Whether they're skinny or flare, denim or wool, I'm willing to bet that you have a pair of black pants in your closet. And while [yawn], they may not be [snore] the most exciting [zzzzzzz] sartorial choice...just you wait.
What a wild ride this past week has been. But despite the crappy news, we are all doing OK. Like...honestly OK. And Mike and I both have been blown away by the love and support we've received from family, friends, and you. It's funny, so many of your comments start with, "I know we don't know each other but I feel like we're friends" and YES. I do too. We feel your love and support and have read - out loud, to each other - every single word we've received from comments, Facebook, email, and Instagram. And we are in awe.
At one point Mike looked at me and said, "Babe, who are these amazingly wise, loving, compassionate zen-Buddhist-monk-type readers that you have?? Seriously, who??"
I grinned at him. "Moms" I said. "They're Moms."
We went out for some (much-needed) drinks in the city this weekend. We started at a friend's house (I feel the need to explain Raines' bare feet) and then went out (in shoes) for pizza.
Mamas, do you remember Raines' very first nanny, Em? The one he'd refer to as "my Em" and who will forever be part of our family? She's been featured on ANMJ here for belting a cardigan in a really cool way and here because I was totally amazed by her ability to nanny all day in a skirt.
And? She wears necklaces. Multiple necklaces. Around the kids. So when a reader emailed asking about how to layer necklaces, I knew Em was the one for the job. (And it doesn't hurt that she recently started selling Stella & Dot...although, if I know Em, I'm guessing it's more to fuel her own fashion passion.)
Anyway, here are Em's thoughts on necklace layering (and a crazy-fab giveaway just because she's awesome).
I have always had an aversion to spending money on accessories. For the longest time, I thought my hard earned dollars should go toward pieces that would give me the most bang for my buck. For me, that meant dresses (a whole outfit in one!) and tops (who looks below the waist?).
Since then, I've found that a few new accessories will help any tired wardrobe. Necklaces are especially versatile, can be thrown on while running out the door, and hardly ever go out of style. [Note from S: This is a good point, Em - how long have statement necklaces been considered trendy? Uhhh...YEARS, now?]
To take out some of the guess work of layering pieces together, here are a few looks I’m loving, most of which have been tested for wearability (that’s a word, right?) around a toddler or two. Apologies in advance for the overload of mirror shots…my 22 month old assistant will only turn the camera on herself.
Two necklaces of Similar Length
This is my go-to look. I feel pulled together, yet still on trend. When wearing two similar necklaces (in this case they are both thin chains) it helps to vary the shape a little. The pendant on the shorter necklace, along with the slightly different length, helps to keep the two from tangling.
And, mind you, this was a real outing. There were no doctor's appointments, it wasn't a 15 minute errand that anyone drove me to (just to save sanity), it was a real, honest-to-goodness, family outing.
For this momentous occasion, we went to my fav, Sister Cities Park. This park, this genius of a park, has an awesome coffee shop/patio that are located next to a (heavily chlorinated) wading pool....
Readers, I'm beyond thrilled to introduce my friend, OE. I met OE right after the birth of her eldest, and have had the pleasure of watching her blog grow into something truly fabulous. I know you'll love Girl Meets Baby as much as I do.
Hey Fashionistas! My name’s O.E. and I blog over at Girl Meets Baby. I am totally honored and excited to be guest posting here at ANMJ. But obviously, the circumstances are awful. Breast Cancer can suck it.
Shana. You guys. This girl. She literally picked me out at the mall for a ‘mom’s street style’ post ages ago when my first babe was just 5 months. When I met her, I had no idea what a blog was. And really had no idea how to embrace being a mom and being a woman at the same time. This girl introduced me to a whole new world of blogs, fashion, mommy meet-ups, and a cool factor that rocked my world. Wait, you can be a mom and a total rock star? And then, of course, she moved away. So now I just stalk her over the internet. I was (and still am) totally obsessed with her.
Ok, what more is there to say? Let’s talk Fashion!
1. My Most-Worn Item of Clothing
So my personal style is a lot more skater/punk mixed with some high fashion goodies. I don’t know how to describe it. Maybe Mountain Indie Chick? A Counter-Culture Chaser? Let’s just go with teenager going on 30. But in all seriousness, I love introducing some edge into my fashion. No amount of workouts or diets will ever make my body resemble Shana’s tiny frame, so a girl’s got to make up for some things (*cough* thighs, *cough cough* postpartum pooch) by knowing her limitations and accessorizing like hell. My most worn item is actually two items that I consider one. Black skinny jeans with high tops. Black pants hide a multitude of sins and when paired with summer tops they work for the heat. And, if your legs are like mine and aren’t your favorite feature, you can rock skinnies by wearing really large shoes. It helps the proportions. And avoids giving you the piano leg look. My tried and true high tops are Supras. I have this pair. And I just ordered these! The trick is to have the tongue of the shoe flare out. Tie the laces behind the the tongue to add even more volume. I wear this outfit with summer tops, a jean vest, and a whole boat load of accessories almost every single day. So find your inner Bieber and try it out!
2. A Fall Piece I'm Currently Coveting
I cannot wait until Fall. I seriously look 10 pounds thinner in winter clothes. No joke. I am loving all of the upcoming trends for Fall. I especially pay close attention to London’s Fashion Week. And since my general vibe always leans more towards the Euro street trends, I tend to watch the street style happening off the runways. And y’all, there’s so much cool stuff to get inspired by. The crazy thing is that it almost feels like anything goes right now. One of my favorite trends I’ve been seeing is the awesome mix of fabrics. It started with this years “Punk” theme at the Met Ball and continued its party straight onto the runways during Fall Fashion Week. Short jackets were especially huge on the streets in combinations of every material imaginable. I love bombers and it’s looking like the varsity jackets are here to stay. But I loved seeing biker jackets with everything from denim sleeves to built in hoods. So I am totally crushing over this jacket. A biker jacket on its own just feels so serious, add in the hood and you’ve got cozy casual mixed with badass statement piece!
3. Something That Makes Summer-With-Kids Easier
Ok, let’s talk kids. I live in the heart of the city and drag my three kids (all under the age of four) all over this town. We hit up Museums, parks, zoos, coffee shops, and the list goes on. My one life saver is my backpack! I gave up on the over the shoulder diaper bags once my third child was born. I started to feel bad with how many times my bag would swing and whack one of my littles in the face. By strapping a bag on my back I can avoid that. Also, my arms are totally free. I know, I know, they retrofit diaper bags with backpack straps. But trust me, it’s WAY better to retrofit a backpack into a diaper bag. This Herschel bag is my favorite and makes life so much easier. I love Herschel. And, on long days out, I even outfitted my boys with their own. Brooks has this one. And Lucas has this one. If you’re tired of seeing Herschel everywhere, you can go check out some similarly rad bags like Ada Blackjack and Colorado’s own Topo Designs.
4. My Fav Summer Recipe
Let’s talk Food. Ok, when Shana first asked me for a summer recipe I kind of cringed. Cooking is not my thing. I was wondering if I could just link to a to-go menu from our favorite restaurant. Does that count? But, after giving it more thought, I remembered this gem. These meatball sandwiches are so good and my kids LOVE to get messy helping make the balls. They’re quick, easy, and oh so yummy. Giada does it again.
5. The One Make-Up Product I Can't Live Without
And saving the best (read: most important) for last: Makeup. I start every prayer thanking God for makeup and caffeine. Those two things are what keep me feeling and looking alive when my kids have been up all night (someone please tell me that they will eventually all sleep through the night — sob). So I was stoked when Mac Cosmetics made an eye cream that contains caffeine. My two loves! It’s the Mac Prep + Prime Vibrancy Eye Cream and it’s the ONE makeup product I can’t live without (besides the obvious mascara and under eye concealer). It reduces puffiness from sleepless nights and preps the skin around the eye to really hold onto the concealer. My dark circles stay covered hours longer when I prep with this cream. Which, as a mom, is all we can hope for, right?
Well guys! It’s been fun. It’s been real. Hopefully I’ve inspired you to introduce some rock and roll into your wardrobes, drink some caffeine, and for goodness sake, cover those damn circles under your eyes! It’s the edge you’ll need to take on your long day and look damn good doing it.
This is our monthly series called How We Wear It, where *we* show all of the different ways to rock a wardrobe basic. And by "we" I mean...all y'all. If there was One. Thing. our readers have communicated again and again, it's this: You want to see a wide range of body types represented here on ANMJ.
So. I'll show you how I've been styling my old standbys, and so will Cam. And then, dear readers, we want to hear from YOU. You can play along via our Linky party at the bottom (you can sign up at the bottom of this article or on Cam's page), you can send us an email (send it to either Cam or me), upload a pic to ANMJ's Facebook page, or use Instagram with the hashtag: #howwewearit. As reader pics come in, I'll be keeping this page up-to-date.
Since I do the majority of planning and gift buying in the family, Mother's Day sometimes feels....overwrought. I'd rather skip the brunch crowds, skip the garden teas and just stick to something low-key. Something easy. Something...and this is the key...that doesn't require my involvement to plan.
Wake me up late with some coffee and a pastry, and maybe a little handmade something from the kids. (I already gave Mike this box from Kiwi Crate to make it easy). But I'm not gonna lie: I do want a little token of appreciation from my husband. It doesn't have to be big or expensive...just...thoughtful.
So here are my gift picks for Mother's Day...whether you are looking for a little token of appreciation for your own mum, or ideas to send to your hubs.
I started using Aden+Anais linen swaddling wraps for the boy's towels, and I'll never go back to terry. Linen absorbs water, drys quickly, and fits into a beach bag so much easier. I'd love to add to a big 'ol family blanket for the beach.
Did I mention that I was featured in Glam Canada's roundup of Moms? So freaking cool. Anyway, like I told them, high on my wish list are cool sunnies. Madewell's Hepcat are my current favs - the apricot would look gorgeous with a tan, but paleface moi should go for the mint.
3. Linen Tote, $134 from Independent Reign on Etsy
I'm dying over this gorgeous bag. Perfect color, perfect shape.
I really love to fly kites, but I'm sick to death of flying the assortment of frogs/planes/crap that the boys like. Mama wants a pretty kite. I actually think this would be an amazingly perfect Mother's day - going to the beach to fly kites. Into the Wind actually sells kites in assortments of three to save some money...and OOO!! This assortment has my butterfly, a jet, and a easy triangle flyer for the littlest one. It's like it was made for us.
Sadly, these bad boys are out of stock. But they will be back by the end of May (you can sign up to be notified), and I would be happy with an IOU for Mother's Day. Because OMG picnic perfection, right???
Mike and I bought this 13 years ago. It is AWESOME. It's awesome for picnics in the park, for backyard lounging, and even for entertaining city kids on a balcony. Incidentally, after 13 years of use, we now need a new one.
Have you ever tried these? Williams-Sonoma overnight ships these to you, frozen. You store them in your freezer, and when you are ready to eat, you put them on a baking sheet to let them rise overnight. In the morning, pop them in the oven and voila! The best chocolate croissants I've had outside of Paris.
In order to play music - properly - in our house, it involves something like 24 different remotes and 2387497 button pushes and 9820985792348283 swears words emitted by me as I attempt to wield said remotes and push buttons. So when Mike's not home, I usually just play music on my phone. The boys and I currently rock out using a little lego speaker I got for free at a bank...but this gorgeous Bloom amplifier would KILL IT.
And Mamas: A huge, huge, HUGE thank you for all of your thoughts and comments on the MILF campaign. I am blown away by your support, your words of wisdom, and your respectful commentary. Words cannot express how honored I feel that women like you actually take the time to read this blog. MWAH!
Mamas. I ran into Paola at the playground a few days ago, and loved her take on a playground-momiform. You know how enamored I am of neon + army green....but with chambray? Genius!
Best of all? After I struck up a conversation, she revealed to me that she is a pretty die-hard bargin shopper. "You don't need to spend a ton of money," Paola shrugged. "Just choose the right pieces....carefully."
Even her small details were thoughtfully picked: pink lipstick, cool Ray-bans and starfish earrings (which are safe from grabby hands, but still blingy).
But don't expect to find Little Batman's gorgeous Mama in sneakers. "Augh! So many big sneakers....everywhere. Never! I cannot." She fixes me with a look. "You do not have to wear sneakers just because you have kids."
Luckily, I happened to be in my desert boots that day...rather than my usual Converse. But I'll bet Paola was really talking about actual running shoes - the big, soul-less ones that appeared to be the footwear-of-choice at the park. On that front, I'm with her whole-heartedly. My real running shoes aren't even all that comfortable unless I'm actually, you know, running. (And then I'm uncomfortable all over...but for a whole different reason.)
Paola, thanks for being such a good sport, and providing us all with some neon inspiration! I don't know about the rest of you, but I might need to make a Target run....
Mamas, after our statement necklace round-up, a few of you commented/emailed that you found statement necklaces tough to pull off. You weren't sure when to throw them on (only with fancy dresses? T-shirts? What?), or how to get the necklines right.
I get it. As someone whose style veers to the minimalist, statement necklaces can seem like...a whole lotta necklace. So I turned to one of my BFFs, Becky McBride, who happens to be a stylist for Stella & Dot. Helping women figure out how to wear statement necklaces is part of her job...and Beck often wears them herself. Like...every. day. (Just about, anyway.)
Anyway, Mamas, it gets better: It just so happens that Stella & Dot is coming out with a new line in ONE MONTH. And Beck is selling her gently used sample pieces at 50% off...to us. Keep reading for some adorable statement necklace (maternity!!) style inspiration...and some crazy-awesome deals. Instructions for purchasing are below.
Gang! I love getting emails from readers who successfully used one of our styling techniques. And Lisa was kind enough to include a pic!
Lisa had emailed me a few weeks ago, asking if I thought the Gap shift dress (originally mentioned here) was fancy enough for a work party. We both thought that with a bit of glitz and fabulous shoes...it would be.
I wore it [the gap shift] to a casual Christmas party last night and here's how it looked. I was happy with it and it was super comfortable! Most of the women at the party were in jeans and black or sparkly tops so I'd like to think I was one of the best dressed. :)
Lisa, you look gorgeous. Thank you so much for taking the time to send in a pic!! (And love the intense look on your little one's face!)