Wednesday, October 03, 2012

The Wide Lawns Fashion Blog

If you actually know me, you're laughing hysterically at the title of this post because you know I'd never start a fashion blog. The very idea of me with a fashion blog is outrageous because I have no sense of style at all. None. 

When I worked I wore dresses a lot because they were one piece things that I could just put on with some brown or black shoes and call it a day. Now I mostly wear jeans and tee shirts and cardigans. I am obsessed with cardigans, especially living in Florida where it's hot as blazes outside and freezing cold inside from the AC no matter where you go. Oh, and flip flops.

But see, I like fashion and I want to look cute and polished. I want to be that well put together mom and I don't want to look like a slob slouching around in my yoga pants with a stained tank top and chipped toenail polish. Chipped nail polish is a gigantic pet peeve of mine, although I am currently guilty of it, though not for long. So, lately I've been trying to get my act together and look better and learn to put together better outfits and I think it's been working because the other day another mom told me I always look cute (I'm tricking her! she thinks I'm the polished mom!) and then my friend told me I should start a fashion blog because she loves how I put together my outfits. I'll never do all that but I will share my secret with you here.

Pinterest y'all. I have a fashion board on Pinterest and I pin all those Polyvore outfits that other people put together. Then I look at them and nearly have a heart attack at how much the clothes actually cost. I kid you not, I pinned a basic cable knit sweater that costs almost $1,700. You'd have to be insane to spend that on a pullover. Dear God you could buy a car. Or go on a really great trip. I don't know who's paying these prices, especially in this economy, but I can tell you it's not me. I am cheap. I don't like to buy anything much over twenty dollars. I consider a fifty dollar shirt expensive but I guess most people don't.

Since I am cheap and still want cute outfits, I look at the things I've pinned and then I go to Ross, Marshalls, Old Navy, Target, Goodwill and consignment shops to find similar items and I recreate expensive outfits for next to nothing. I also tend to pin outfits that have pieces that I already have but combined in new ways, because I have no style and don't know how to combine things very well on my own. I've had a lot of success doing this.

I also like What Not to Wear and I have memorized Clinton and Stacy's rule that every outfit needs color, pattern, texture and shine. It's like a mantra. I chant it in yoga. OM COLOR PATTERN TEXTURE SHINE OM.

Now I used to look at the J Crew catalog and go to all the discount stores to recreate their outfits, but sadly, as of late, J Crew seems to have lost their damned mind and none of their outfits match. Most of their outfits now look nice in the pictures, as if they are artistic photography, but one can't get away with looking in real life how one looks in an artsy photograph. I'm sorry. Some of those mismatched items would look ridiculous in real life and would have people whispering about if you looked in the mirror before you left the house. And that's not even taking into consideration that their models are six foot tall, hundred pound, gorgeous fourteen year olds, who can get away with looking somewhat ridiculous. We forty year old, frumpy housewives don't have that luxury so there will be no purple skinny jeans with leopard blouses and turquoise cardigans and red shoes in my future. Alas. I find that plainer, classic stuff works much better on me. 

I'm going to share my most recent outfit win. I saw this very autumnal ensemble a few weeks back on Pinterest and it was total preppy WASP apple picking material. I have WASP fantasies. Anyway, there was a blue gingham top, a burnt orange cardigan, jeans and leopardy looking flats. Something about this outfit really appealed to me, so I set out to recreate and couldn't find a similar blue top anywhere but at J Crew where it cost WAY more than twenty bucks. But lo and behold, I found the cardigan at Ross for $19.99 (expensive for Ross) and the EXACT blue gingham shirt at Marshalls for all of $16.99. I already had jeans from Old Navy, a belt from the late nineties and leopard flats that I bought also at Ross but four years ago. Hell yeah. Outfit recreated and all I spent was $36.99. Woo! So there's my secret.

If you guys like this, I will share more recreated outfits in the future. Mostly because it will give me an excuse to recreate outfits.

Here is the original outfit.

And here is my discount version, although I'm not entirely convinced that the shoes match, although Stacy and Clinton would probably say they did. What do you all think?


Mary Giannone said...

You definitely nailed the recreation! But I'm skeptical of the pattern on the shoes matching the pattern on the shirt as well. But that's because I also have very little fashion sense and I tend to play it safe. If I had to guess, I'd say the dueling pattern situation just needs a dash of confidence to pull the whole thing together. If you have the right aura about you, then, you can be more adventurous. :-)

Caroline said...

i'm a jeans and cardigan kind of girl too! i love that you can make it look so nice :) and i'd love to see more recreated outfits in the future.. i've already taken a look at your pinterest board for some ideas. i work from home, so it's pretty difficult for me to be inspired to get dressed nicely.

Caroline said...

i'm a jeans and cardigan kind of girl too! i love that you can make it look so nice :) and i'd love to see more recreated outfits in the future.. i've already taken a look at your pinterest board for some ideas.

Melanie said...

I think that "fashion" blog posts are a terrific idea!

Also, I took a look at your Pinterest page and I think you have a very classic sense of style, of which you should be proud.

Alison said...

Too funny--Pintrest is my fashion secret weapon, too! I was happy to learn I actually OWN most of the separates they usually show--I just have no clue how to put them together! Pintrest is such a life saver!

mantherthepanther said...

I think the shoes are great! They are far enough away from your tops that the mixture of the leopard and the checks won't clash.

I love Pinterest for the fashion too. I play it safe as well, but I'm trying to branch out into new looks!

Steph said...

I'm a total bargain hunter, too, and I LOVE me some Ross!

I can't tell you how many $20 and under dresses I've bought at Ross and gotten compliments galore.

I think your outfit looks great, btw. Would love to see more of your creations. :)

kerry said...

I like it!

Anonymous said...

Maybe it's the scale of pattern that relates. And don't forget the sparkle!

Dawn said...

Nice work. We seem to have similar style, so of course I think all your choices are fabulous! I am the queen of mixing and matching cheap and expensive (Hermes with Target, always a favorite).

Heather said...

Your style is adorable. I do not have the interest level to keep that up. My version of this is to buy everything at the same two stores, Anthropologie and Athleta. The only flaw in my plan is if I gain any weight I'm screwed.

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