Sweater Fever

Today, I wanted to talk about a topic that’s very near and dear to my heart: sweaters. It seems the past few years I’ve had an obsession for, traditionally, one category of either clothing, accessories, or shoes. Nevertheless, it seems to be a seasonal fix each year. Last year it was scarves, the year before coats, and before that booties. This year just so happens to be sweaters. I can probably point a lot of blame at a blogger or two, but we don’t need to get into the dirty details of influencer marketing.

As promised, I mentioned on the gram (give or take a week or five) that I would share a few from my own collection and some favorites that I have refrained myself from purchasing. So without further ado, here are my favorite sweaters this season, and links on where to snag em!

Mock Necks

Lucky Brand Mock Neck

The mock neck is sort of in-between a full-on turtleneck and a crew neck, and is probably one of my favorite trends this season. And while the mock neck has been around (here) for much of 2017, the style definitely dominated the sweater category this past fall and I’m so glad it did. My favorite mock neck sweater pictured above, was a steal from a Lucky Brand outlet store in Colorado. But you can find similar items here:

 

  1. White Nep Pullover – Target
  2. Button Side Tunic Sweater – Target
  3. Donegal Northfield Mockneck – Madewell 
  4. Cropped Turtleneck – Target
  5. Knit Sweater – H&M

More favorites here:

 

  1. Let’s Link Up Cable Pullover – Free People
  2. Patchwork Mock Neck Sweater – Nordstrom
  3. Knit Wool-Blend Sweater – H&M
  4. Links Links Mock Neck – Free People
  5. Cuddle Up Pullover – Free People
  6. Ottoman Slouchy Tunic – Free People

Power Sleeves

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Ah, the power sleeve. Not an official style title, just my own personal feeling about them. They are big, they are bold, and you sort of have to have a bit of confidence when you’re wearing such ridiculously large, ballooned-sleeves, amiright? But let’s be honest, all I think about when it comes to a power sleeve is Jerry. But if you’re bold enough to flaunt the power sleeve, more power to you.

 

  1. Ruffle Sweatshirt – Lucky Brand
  2. Wrap Sweater – Treasure and Bond x Something Navy
  3. Cocoon Sleeve Oversized Crew Neck – Target
  4. Wide Sleeve Sweater – Nordstrom
  5. Her Turtleneck – Free People
  6. Park City Pullover

Ok, to be fair, none of these options are too much power puff—maybe except you green.


Colorful Knits

 

  1. Dundee Fringe Cardigan- Anthropologie
  2. Kaylee Pullover – Anthropologie
  3. Marled Wool Blend Turtleneck – J. Crew
  4. Shelley Pullover – Free People
  5. Castles In The Sky Sweater – Free People
  6. Knit Sweater – H&M

There seemed to be no shortage of spectacularly embellished, bright and colorful sweaters this season, and I can’t say I hate it. Just pure awesomeness. In a closet full of mostly black and grey, I could seriously use a pop of color. I had loads of candidates for this category that unsurprisingly, sold out. 😦


Over-The-Shoulder

image2I tried to find one of the sweaters pictured below in-store at Free People, but the St. Louis store has a lame buyer—sorry, not sorry—I did, however, find this gem at a fraction of the cost of the sweater I initially wanted to buy. You win some, you lose some.

 

  1. Off The Shoulder Sweater – Target
  2. Cold Shoulder Chenille Sweater – Lucky Brand
  3. Off Shoulder Sweater – Lucky Brand
  4. Alluring Sands Pullover – Free People
Turtle Neck

Fear not of the traditional turtleneck. Albeit, a popular and modest style for 80s-90s moms, and classicly paired with a jumper, the turtleneck has made a big and cozy comeback with sweaters this season. No undershirt necessary.

 

  1. Flecked Turtleneck – Madewell
  2. Knit Your Love Turtleneck – Chic Wish
  3. Grid Turtleneck Sweater – Chic Wish
  4. She’s All That Knit Turtleneck – Free People
  5. Heart and Soul Patched Knit Sweater – Chic Wish
Cardigans

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A staple necessary for everyone’s wardrobe if not only for their cozy, casual, and cocoon-like qualities. Here are some of my favorites:

 


That wraps up some of my favorite sweaters this season! Any favorites you can’t stop wearing this winter? Share em with me in the comments below or tag me on the gram! Thanks for peeking!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Moving Forward in 2018

Reflecting on life over the past year and steps I’m taking to move forward in 2018, to improve my skills, capabilities, and my peace of mind.

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2018, I couldn’t be happier to greet you. 2017 was off to a tumultuous start, but on a personal level, made a turn for the better. Josh and I bought our first home, I got a new job, my sister and my future brother-in-law got engaged, several of our wonderful friends got married, I made multiple (mind you) pie crusts from scratch, plus their innards. I was gifted a kitchen aid mixer 🙏🏼, we bought a vacuum cleaner that is the best vacuum cleaner I have ever used, and this past fall, I started planning and working on my garden, which I’m so stoked to really cut my teeth into this spring. Now, if that isn’t a successful year (and super adulting), I don’t know what is.

But all of these accomplishments didn’t come without their hardships. In all my years of life, I don’t believe I have ever been this stressed, riddled with anxiety, fear, and uncertainty. I have been challenged, tested, broken, renewed, re-energized, and reconsidered my life decisions more often than I care to admit.

But now I feel (at least today), that I can finally get a grasp on my life, my job, my goals, and finally take a deep breath in, and let it allll out.

I have been reflecting on life over the past year; the accomplishments, the failures, and steps I took to move forward and this year I’d like to take more strides to improve my skills, capabilities, and my peace of mind. To do so will take much persistence and practice, but here’s what I want to focus on in 2018:

Eliminate Stress

Sure, I won’t be able to cut-out all of the stress in my life, but accepting that life happens and continuing to move forward may help reduce some of that pressure. One thing is for sure, I don’t have the energy to deal with stress in 2018.

In addition to continuing my practice of yoga, another way I plan on relieving stress is through meditation. There are so many health benefits of meditation. My only problem is, I can only sit still for about 6 minutes max, and my mind is a mile per minute. Any pointers from anyone who practices? 🙋🏻‍♀️

Preparedness

Not surprisingly, a lot of my stress was a direct result of my lack of preparedness, which had me constantly struggling to keep up. This year I want to focus on seeking opportunities to plan ahead, improve my knowledge and skills, and improve my overall confidence by being prepared.

Being Present

Ironically, it’s difficult to be present in a digital age, especially when your job is social media. However, this year I’d like to be more present to the people who mean the most to me. While I don’t believe I was particularly terrible at being present/communicating before, I think there’s room for us all to improve here. Let’s all put down the phones and have some solid discussions with each other (unless you’re reading this post ;)).

While there are multiple goals/changes I’d like to focus on in 2018, these preceding goals are most important to me. What goals are you setting for 2018? What steps are you taking to achieve them?

Hello? It’s me.

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Hello, world. It’s me again. Pardon my hiatus, as a lot has happened since we last spoke. Oy vey, adulting is serious. Seriously, here’s a quick update on what’s been happening for the last (gasp!) 6 months. I moved in with Josh in November. We (mostly me…ok only me) welcomed 2017 with great concern of the catastrophes that laid ahead. I decided to pay off my debt as quickly as possible, therefore cutting costs spent on my little addiction called, clothing, therefore no new material (literally).

Gretch left me for an epic adventure across the country and left her cat (bean dip) for me to nurture and love as my own. All of the sudden she loves me. Couldn’t be that I feed her every day…

The same weekend Gretch left for her transcontinental voyage,  Josh and I casually decided to look for a house. So then we found a realtor.

In March, I decided to join Ready + Willing again, jump ahead 7 weeks or so, busier than ever at work, under contract for a house, still regretting committing to an 8-week volunteer program and still trying to keep a blog running. Gosh, it’s exhausting just writing about it.

But lately, I’ve been really into these challenges; see how many projects Caitlin can juggle before she burns out. No really, challenges are very attractive to me as of late. Tiny victories feel tremendous and there’s just something about crossing out a task on your to-do list.

I’ve been creating challenges for myself in all areas of my life, such as, what I eat, exercising, skin care regimen, creative challenges, writing challenges, photography challenges, reading challenges, styling challenges, cooking challenges, financial challenges, communication challenges. You name it; I’ve probably turned it into a challenge. And why? Simply to improve my body, mind, soul, discipline, and edge. If there’s anything I’ve learned from these challenges, and/or Grit, is that passion and persistence are key to success.

My latest and greatest challenge is keeping this blog going. I have so terribly missed writing here, and I’ve got some tricks up my sleeve to keep me coming back. So for all of you who have been wondering, I am back, and man it feels good.

Curious about all of my challenges? Leave a comment to learn more. Signing off with these inspirational words from John F. Kennedy.

“We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.” — John F Kennedy

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Sayonara Summer

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Sweet, sweet, summer. What a time for exploration, adventures, and new discoveries. Knock the temperatures all you want, but I LOVE summer; lake trips, floating, laying out by the pool, sun-kissed skin, lightened locks, minimal clothing, and ice cold beer.

Yep, I will take scorching temperatures for all of this. Sadly, summer is coming to an end; so to send off summer on a stellar pump, I decided to visit one of my favorite places, dressed head-to-toe in some of my some of my summer favorites.

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Location: Bowood Farms Dress: Urban Outfitters Shoes: Pitaya Wallet: Target

Unfortunately, I found this dress at Urban about 3 months ago, and it’s no longer available online, however, you might be able to find it in-store. The shoes I purchased from Pitaya last year. Although, they are no longer available now, I highly recommend browsing their stores. Awesome, super cute clothes, accessories, and shoes, for incredible prices. I also got my sunglasses from Pitaya and they were $8.

 

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Bowood Farms remains one of my all-time favorite brunch destinations in St. Louis. Not only are the food and cocktails excellent, but in the spring and summer, the nursery is abundant with plants, herbs, blooms, and magnificent florals. It’s an exceptionally charming nursery and cafe and I highly recommend checking it out; at least just to peruse and wander because it’s just simply  a beautiful boutique.

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I hope you enjoy your last weekend of summer by soaking up the sun, and taking some time to reflect on all your accomplishments and finally relax with a big ol’ margarita, chips & salsa, and maybe some shrimp tacos if you’re feeling really spicy. I’m definitely not craving Mexican food…not at all…

Stay tuned for my fall fashion predictions coming soon! Sayonara summer!

Work Wear Tips to Break Business Casual

Oh guys. This has been a long time coming. The next time I have the bright idea to pick up an eight week volunteer program, and freelance writing gig, someone just slap me. So, I thought it would be a wonderful opportunity and great experience to get involved and do free advertising for non-profits in St. Louis, and then in the midst of that opportunity, take on a freelance copywriting project that needed to be complete in oh, a week. No, not a great experience. Let’s try, most awful experience. Needless to say, I’ve been slacking on my blog, and I do apologize…again.

Now let’s move on to the actual purpose of this post: office attire!

So business casual and I don’t really get along all too well. Being one of two female employees under the age of 30, I’d say I’m the most “adventurous” when it comes to work wear. But like I’ve said a hundred times before, balance is everything. If you’re like me and strive to stretch the definition of business causal, make sure you damn well find a balance, otherwise you’re going to find yourself in a rather uncomfortable conversation with your supervisor.

So how does one achieve balance between business causal and fashion forward? With an exceptionally high credit card limit!

Just kidding. I create balance utilizing accessories, semi-casual tops, layers, shoes, hair styling, and of course, the loose/fit rule.

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Madonna, Prince, Jerry Seinfeld?

I was pleasantly surprised to get so much versatility out of this top, wearing as a v-neck crossover, and as pictured, button-up crew neck. However, every time I wear this top this way; although I act confident in my style decision, I still feel like Jerry Seinfeld in ‘puffy shirt.’

Tip #1: Wear pieces with versatility.

I bought this top specifically for work and while I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with it at the time of purchase, I found several ways to wear this top; even coming up with a few new outfits. Whether you’re rummaging through your closet for something to wear or shopping around, think about what ways you can wear an item differently. Can you wear it with pants? Shorts? A skirt? Can you wear it outside of work? Would you want to wear it outside of work? Does it look good as is? Does it look better tucked in?

Think about the added benefit, besides it just being really effing cute.

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Tip #2: Give your traditional work wear a twist.

Making simple styling changes to your  traditional styles can really add some wow to your work wear. E.g. Instead of just tucking in (or instead of not tucking in at all), try tucking in the front of the button-up and leaving the tail out. It’s simple, subtle, and totally hip in my opinion. Jazz-up your outfits with different heels, booties, and accessories for fresh looks (when you don’t want to buy clothes for work, you have to get creative to refresh an outfit).

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Tip #3: Let loose.

If traditional collared-shirts don’t tickle your fancy, try flannels, plaids, or patterns and prints. I also do this style with long t’s when I’m feeling extra casual (which, let’s be honest, is everyday).

Side Story:

At the time of this shoot, I wasn’t feeling very enthused or excited. So when Taylor Swift’s ‘We Are Never Getting Back Together’ came on, I started to forget concern with what looks good and just groove. All of the sudden this shoot didn’t seem so staged, and I was happier with just being myself. Hence, the ‘what-the-hell-is-she-doing?’ pose.

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Tip #4: Layer

I will never forget my discussion with my mentor about women’s “fashion” (quotes because he doesn’t understand fashion, especially women’s, but I digress). He said, “The older women get, the baggier their clothing becomes.” I shot him my skeptical brow and he countered, “It’s true, just wait, you’ll be wearing baggy shawls too.” I hate to admit that he was right, because it was much sooner than I would have expected, although not for the same reasons as he explained. Perhaps it’s because of a long-standing trend, like the skinny jean phenomenon; but I am totally drawn to loose fitting, flowy, comfortable tops, paired with skinny jeans or leggings. And it’s not because I can’t wear the tiny, tight-fit, “young” clothes anymore; like yeah, I’ll still rock that shit. But what I’m attracted to is the harmony and the balance between the loose and the fit. I love layering these tops and I love creating different looks with them.

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Tip #5: Let loose part two.

You know the scenario, you see something on Instagram, in the store, on some 16 year old, and you think, I could never wear that. And then you move one. But I say experiment. Even if you think it’s going to be funky, just give it a try. This dress, I saw it and I was like omg, that’s really cute. But I also worried, will that look terrible on me? Will I get shit because I’m wearing a dress with massive roses on it? And I did, Pete called me Jezebel for the better half of the evening that I first wore this dress. But then something happened. I started receiving compliments from co-workers about my dress, and even though I loved the way the dress looked, it was just that extra support that really made me happy that I made the purchase and took the risk. Anytime there’s a new trend, or a style I’m just not really sure about, I try it out, because why not? There’s only one of two outcomes. You’ll either confirm that a look is totally ghastly or surprisingly on-point. Not only does this mentality apply to your style senses; the same is true for life. We’re so confined to what we know and what we’re used to and comfortable with. Try just to see what happens, experiment, let loose, and learn.

#lifelessons y’all.

Side Story Two: I ordered a ton of clothes that I’m super stoked about wearing to work these days, however, I received them post photo shoot, so I will just post  those outfits on Instagram as they come along. Holler if you see something you like!

 

How To Get Your Body Caftan-Ready For The Summer

Article originally published in New York Magazines, The Cut. Written by Véronique Hyland. Title is the same as the original article.

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About a month ago, I was eating at a restaurant in West Hollywood with a friend. We’d already devoured faux In-N-Out burgers, the contents of the dim sum and sushi carts, and a generous helping of fries. She didn’t seem particularly concerned about our Falstaffian night of consumption. “I’m getting ready to go to a caftan party,” she told me. Instead of a bachelorette party, a friend of hers was having a house party with caftans as a required dress code. When I returned to New York, I saw thatChristina Hendricks is also a fan of caftan parties (and even got Jimmy Fallon to wear one). One can only hope that, like juicing, injecting vitamin B-12, using hella as an adverb, and doing those weird IV drips, caftan parties are a chill West Coast trend that’s headed east very soon. That’s how it always starts: Your much-cooler-to-the-point-where-they’re-slumming friend tells you about it, then a minor celebrity raves about it, then everyone is suddenly doing it.

It’s now late May, which means that women’s publications are in full bikini-body crisis mode. A Vogue headline blares, “How to Get a Beach Body in Two Weeks.” Self magazine might as well display a visible forehead vein: Get that bikini body or else! (“SUMMER SEXY STARTS NOW,” screams their current cover.) These articles emphasize a Spartan regimen of salt-reduction, dry brushing, and tiny, fishy meals. Perhaps there’s the occasional Pyrrhic “cheat day,” but overall these prescriptions do not spell “summer fun.”

But getting a caftan body — now, that is far more pleasurable. Below, the Cut’s steps to getting yourself caftan-ready for the warmer months. (The best news: Literally every step but the first is optional.)

1. Select a caftan of your chosen gauge and length. Stroke its gauzy fabric and whisper into its folds.

2. Let your flesh settle into the crevices of your comfortable, comfortable caftan.

3. Crumbs? Let them fall where they may, swaddled in your caftan.

4. Throw out your razor.

5. Throw out your bra.

6. Throw out the aloe vera lotion you bought last summer. You will not be getting sunburned this summer.

7. Release your inhibitions. Feel the rain on your skin.

 

 

5 Easter Sunday Looks

Ah, I adore spring! So happy, refreshing, and renewing. Easter Sunday has always been a special occasion for me, particularly in the dress department. Growing up, even though we weren’t very religious, we always dressed for the occasion. At least, that’s how my mom would have it (then again, maybe that’s just the way I had it). Since then, it has just sort of stuck with me. In spirit of all of this wonderful spring weather, finding inspiration from my favorite Instagramer’s and of course the almighty, Pinterest; I’ve come up with a few outfit ideas for Easter to share with you.

Classic Stripes

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Feeling like Jackie O with a bad hair day, mmm but I love that jacket!

Alteration of a Favorite

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I wore this skirt on Easter last year, and it is truly a favorite, so I had no issue recycling it with a different top. I’ll admit, I felt pretty house-wifey, and I do recommend not using an over-sized polo. You can basically wear any sort of top with this skirt and my go-to last year was a black crop top.

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Deets n’ such.

So the romper is, well, how should we put this? A little risqué. However, I think it’s a classic and wonderfully comfortable, albeit revealing, hence the light trench. This romper also pairs well with a blazer. I only have a white blazer, so I killed the photo because it was a little much, but the couple were great.

Casual Chic

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At the time of this photo, I was really regretting throwing out my iron when I moved. I wanted to include my bohemian spirit and something that was simple and comfortable. Kimonos + loose tops + skinnies = yes.

Free Flowin’

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Again, the damn iron [insert emoji with face-in-palm]. It turns out I can fit into my size 2 pants, however, I seriously don’t know how that’s possible. Originally, I was going to pair these with a tight-fit v-neck tee, but I just had the thought to try out my green tube top and BAM! Magic happened and I am obsessed with this look. Seriously, I cannot wait to wear this like every weekend…or so. I usually hold onto clothes for a very very long time, like years, and it’s because of reasons like this. Recycle magic. The best.

So there you have it, 5 Easter Sunday looks to get your style senses tingling! Thanks for peeking!