Tastefully Trendy

A life and fashion blog by Sarah Beth

Category: Business Casual (page 2 of 17)

I’m Gonna Pop Some Tags

Have I ever told you how much I hate thrift stores? Like I HATE them. There are several reasons for this:

  1. They smell bad. Honestly, this is probably the biggest reason. All thrift stores smell the same and it’s gross and I feel like I need a shower after.
  2. I’m not much of one for the hunt. When I shop, I head straight to the clearance section – there are either things I like there or not, and I move on. At thrift stores you have to sort through all the trash to MAYBE find one thing you like. It’s too much work. (On a related note, I refuse to eat wings or ribs or fried chicken for the same reason – too much work.)
  3. I don’t think the prices are actually that great. When I can buy new things for the same price or less (as I regularly do), I would rather. Of course, there is that chance you might find a high end label that is new/barely used for a steal – but, for my opinions on that, see #2.

However, because I do have a limited budget, sometimes I just have to hold my nose and go into thrift stores. This happened recently because I’m looking for a specific piece of furniture and just can’t bring myself to pay several hundred dollars for something I have to assemble on my own. And new, already-assembled furniture is out of my price range at this point. So…hey, Good Will!

Naturally, I did not find what I was looking for, but on the way out, I noticed a sequin dress on the mannequin by the front door. So, of course, I got sucked in by something sparkly. I’m glad, though, because $6 for a sequin dress is a good price, even by my standards

Since I was already hooked, I just gave in and started browsing. Most was nothing I’d be interested in, but I did find the pants below, which are destined to become a new favorite.
Light blue, silk, floral pants with multiple colors in the pattern  to mix and match, and a super comfortable drawstring waist that’s also not frumpy looking? Sign me up.
These pants are actually not my best thrift store find – one time I got a Louis Vuitton garment bag (which, I’ve never used, but I own!) for $10.25. But, I like them a lot.

What’s your best thrift store/yard sale find? Do you like the thrill of the hunt, or are you more of an efficient shopper like me?

A Dress for All Ages

Before I dive into this post featuring a BRAND NEW DRESS!!!, let me give a couple disclaimers:

  1. I still don’t know how to take pretty pictures. Even if I have a fancy camera. I just need to embrace it.
  2. I rarely enhance my photos, other than to adjust the exposure, etc. But, I for sure used an editor to make my legs look not quite as neon. You’re welcome.
  3. I don’t think this dress is quite as short in real life and when I’m not bunching it up on my hip. I say that only because my parents recently talked to me about “dressing my age” (feel free to roll your eyes…believe me, I did much more than that), and now they’re in my head.

With those things out of the way, I love this new dress.

It was one of my Old Navy finds, and although it’s about to go out of season, I’ll wear it another time or two before I save it for next fall. Burgundy/wine/maroon, etc. was for sure my color this winter, and I’m sincerely lacking in fall/winter dresses, so this is a perfect addition.

I’m wearing sunglasses in this picture because I thought I looked cool and they matched. But also because I cried most of my eye makeup off in church and took this right after, so, there you go.
Have you started switching to your spring clothes yet? As you can tell from the leaves and trees behind me, spring hasn’t permanently come to Nashville yet, but it’s sure trying! And as much as I like this little dress, I will not be sad to put it away for a few months, if it means warmer weather!

The Polka Dot Detective

Since we’ve already done the no eye makeup look this week, we might as well continue.

I might have told you this story already; forgive me, if so. But, when I was an extra on Nashville, I was supposed to wear business attire, like a detective might. I signed up for it, promising I had the requisite clothing. But, when I started to look through my closet, I realized that while I do have gray and black suits, they have ruffles on them. Likewise, I do have button-downs in dark colors; they’re also polka-dotted. I’ve never seen Mariska Hargitay wear polka dots on the job. If I were actually a detective, I would for sure bring fun to the office with my wardrobe, but I assumed the costumers on Nashville would not agree with that decision. So, I bought some boring grey pants, wore a plain black blazer, and mostly satisfied their requirements.

But, I’m not going to lie, I really wanted to wear the shirt I’m wearing in this outfit today. Can’t you picture how cute that would have been with a black pantsuit? Oh well. If ever I’m a detective in real life, you’ll know what I’ll be wearing.

Unrelated, I pretty much live in my black jeans. I should probably have more than one pair, because I’m obsessed.  Thanks, Old Navy!

Do you have multiples of the same item because you wear them so much? I mean, of course everyone has more than one pair of jeans…but, two of the very same thing? I am definitely guilty of buying the same shirt in several colors; if it’s a good price and looks good, why not stock up?

Closet A-Blaze

If you follow me on my Tastefully Trendy instagram account, you know I went through an unfortunate period in January where I had a bad cold that required me not to wear eye makeup for about a week. I felt very exposed. And very young – maybe that part wasn’t so bad.

This is one of the outfits from that period. As I talked about last week, I’ve really been lacking in creativity lately, so I can’t afford to not post a look because I’m a little vain about the #nomakeup thing. So, look through a soft filter…

Yesterday, I went through my closet, in hopes of a giant purge. While I did find some things to get rid of, I also rediscovered all of my cute blazers. When I worked at a law school, I wore blazers all the time. But, working for a non-profit and in music, I kinda fell out of the habit. Now that I’m in a more professional dress environment again, and since I’m in a fashion rut, anyway, I’m going to try to reincorporate these into my wardrobe – hopefully I can breathe new life into some of these old staples.

This camel blazer, though, has not been forgotten at all. As you might notice if you scroll back far enough, it’s been on major repeat this winter.

I’m kinda thinking that I might do more of the blazer with a t-shirt and jeans thing in this new phase of my life. Still on-trend and very Nashville, but incorporating the pieces I already own. We’ll see how the Spirit moves me.

Do you wear blazers often? What’s your favorite way to style them? I definitely need inspiration, so if you have ideas, please throw them my way!

Don’t Call It a Comeback

Hey, y’all, it’s been a while!

I have had a stressful couple of months. Many of you may know that I teach online part-time, and whenever I’m teaching a course, the life kinda gets sucked out of me. In fact, this course was so stressful, I had two nightmares about it.

Couple that with a few other things that were weighing on my mind, not sleeping great because of said nightmares/stressors, and being tired of all of my winter clothes, and I’ve just had no creativity left to give.

And, if I’m being honest, guys, I’m a little discouraged about my blog. I really enjoy it, and I am so grateful to all of you who have read it – whether for a long time or who have just recently started.  But, I don’t know how to grow it, and I don’t know how to take great pictures. And, I compare myself to so many other bloggers who apparently have professional photographers as spouses, or at least have beautiful back yards in which to take their pictures. Or, even more discouraging, have worse pictures than me (and in my opinion, since I’m being honest and vulnerable here, not as cute clothes), but way more readers/followers/sponsors, etc.

I realize we’re not supposed to compare ourselves. It steals your joy and all of that. But, in the cut-throat world of fashion blogging, it’s pretty hard not to. (I’m just kidding about the cut-throat part. Most of the fashion bloggers I actually “know” (aka, we follow each other on Instagram) are quite lovely.)

All of that to say, I’m having a bit of a blog identity crisis, and I don’t know exactly what’s going to happen. But, I’m not quite ready to give up. Also, I just paid to renew my domain, so I’ve at least got to get my money’s worth on that. So, if I seem a little off my game over the next few weeks (months?), please forgive me. I’m trying to re-find my blogging self.

And, if you feel so led to offer any words of advice or encouragement, please know that the floor is always open.

For now, here’s an outfit I wore a long time ago, but honestly, I wear these pants about once a week, so it very well could have been something I wore yesterday. If you ever find orange pants in the clearance section at Target, do not hesitate for one second. You will not regret your purchase, I promise!

Happy Birthday to Me!

Y’all, it’s my birthday!

In case you haven’t noticed, I’m not one of those subtle people that hopes everyone forgets about my big day. I like my birthday, and I don’t mind people celebrating with me (even if I’m not excited about the number anymore…)

On my birthday, I always like to wear something really pretty, that makes me feel very girly and fun. Last year, I wore my purple satin skirt with gold shoes (and was very overdressed for an all-day work orientation, but whatever). This year, I’m writing this before my birthday (true confession, I usually write these posts in advance – it’s the only way I can get them done!) I really want to wear one of my sequin skirts, but that’s generally frowned upon in academia. So, I’ll probably wear this pretty skirt again, because I love it, and what’s more feminine than a long tutu (let’s be realistic, that’s essentially what this is).

DSC_0035I’ve talked before about how much I love mixing high and low style – the chambray and the tulle are a perfect juxtaposition to each other. (Side note, does anyone remember that store in the mall? It took me FOREVER to learn how to say that word as a middle schooler. But that didn’t stop me from shopping there!)1 - tulle skirt, chambrayThe lavender-gray of the skirt isn’t something I have a lot of in my closet, but I think it’s a pretty color, and purples are easy to blend, as you can see with my shoes here.

How do you all celebrate your birthday? It may not be with fashion, and that’s okay! But, if you do have something particular you like to wear on your special day, I’d love to hear about it!

Gilded Glory

There are a few items in my closet that I really like, but I never wear – either because I just forget about them, or because I’m not sure what to wear with them.

This golden skirt is one of those. I don’t know what to wear with it, SO I forget about it. But, whenever it does resurface, I really like it.

Gold skirtReally, I like it because it makes me feel like a Grecian goddess. I don’t know why – I don’t think they wore gold-threaded maxi skirts. Maybe it’s the column silhouette.

Regardless, I went a little more mono-chromatic with this outfit than I usually do. Or, rather, I should say more neutral. The gold is consistent throughout, but I let the metallic color do the heavy lifting, and kept everything else toned down. Except my lipstick, of course. 1 - gold skirt, olive shoesAlso, how cute are my little bumble bee earrings? I bought them at Christmas time because they were too adorable to pass up. I thought I’d find someone to give them to. Obviously, you can see how well that went.

Boots and Baubles

I’ve been trying to do this style challenge on Instagram, and y’all, it’s hard! I didn’t realize how much of my outfit choices are completely spontaneous. When I have to fit a certain prompt, I end up trying WAY TOO HARD, and it shows.

I’m still going to try to do it, but only when what I was planning to wear anyway matches up. So, this likely means I’ll be much more sporadic in it. Some people do like 5 challenges in one outfit. This blows my mind. I would probably end up on every worst dressed list in America (which, you know, is pretty hard to do if you’re not famous) if I even attempted that.

Today’s prompt, however, was pretty easy: Boots and Baubles. Now, I don’t wear true baubles often, but I do wear a lot of boots. And, I guess giant round earrings can count as baubles, right?

DSC_0058This was my attempt at an interesting pose. Clearly, I need to work on that.

I almost returned this poncho (or cape – there is some debate about the appropriate term) because it was $20. That’s not a lot, but I was expecting it to be $10, and I was annoyed on principle. But…I’m so glad I kept it because I’m obsessed! Who wouldn’t want to wear a wool blanket when it’s cold? And, it’s reversible!

1 - plaid poncho, white bootsI bought these boots in college for $30, which was a lot for me back then (let’s be honest, it still is – I like a good bargain). But, they were worth the investment, as over 10 years later, they’re still going strong! They may not be the most stylish toe, anymore, but they still work, and a good winter white boot is hard to find!

Do you have any items in your wardrobe that have more than given you your money’s worth? What are some of your favorite buys?

My Favorite Things (rn)

I’m not going to lie, this jacket is on major repeat this winter. It’s just so multi-purpose. It makes casual outfits more professional, professional outfits more wearable, and it’s wool and I’ve been freezing for two weeks straight.

So, if you follow me on Instagram, you’ve already seen it once this week…oh well. Hashtag real life.

dsc_0022There’s just something about a camel blazer that is so universally classic. I dig it. And this skirt, because I’ve also worn it a million times recently – occasionally with less static, but again, #reallife.1-camel-blazer-wool-skirtDo you have pieces you’re basically living in this winter? What’s seen the most play from your wardrobe?

2016 Rewind

Well, I’ve basically taken the month of December off of this little blog, but don’t you worry – I’ve been thinking of ways to grow it, and I’m excited about 2017!  (Please note, I think I say this every year, but I mean it this time. Really!)

I’ll talk more about all of that when we actually get to 2017, but as we wind down this crazy year (frankly, I’ve had a fantastic year, but I’ll be respectful of those who hated 2016 and not rub it in), I thought it would be fun to do a little year-end review of Tastefully Trendy.

Thanks to Google Analytics, I know that y’all really like when I wax inspirational, particularly when I talked about entitlement and being content in any circumstances, and when I reflected on God’s faithfulness to me over my first 6 months in Nashville.

You also really like stories about my dating life. My awkward dating proposition to my chiropractor came in as my 2nd most read post of the year, and my woeful tale of the Bradley Cooper look alike that I almost dated apparently made quite a lot of people feel sorry for me (incidentally, he and I started talking again. And he read that post…  But, those are stories for another time.).

As far as strictly fashion posts were concern, this maxi skirt won the day, and is one of my favorite pictures I’ve ever taken of myself. I billed it as such, which might be part of the reason it was so popular.

1 - blue blouse maxi skirtYou all celebrated my first day of work at the Country Music Hall of Fame, and allowed me to be one more voice in the post-election chatter, which really, might have been the biggest grace of all.

So, thank you, friends for such a great year in my little blog world. It means so much to me that you share in my life in this way, and all of your encouragements, kind words, laughs, and “likes” on facebook brighten my day every time.  Here is to a fantastic 2017 for all of us, filled with more successful dating experiences than awkward ones, inspirational words and events, and, of course, great fashion! <3

And just for fun, here are a few more outfits from the year that I just really liked.

My killer 80’s party look:

1 - 80s neon with makeupWhen I celebrated my birthday in sequins. Naturally.

1 - sequin skirt, blanket scarfI combined black and yellow and DIDN’T HATE IT!!

1 - black and yellowBad camera, great outfit (and makeup, TBH).

1-denim-jacket-floral-dress And of course, when I wore sequins to work like NBD.

1 - chambray and sequinsOh, and I was on TV one time. That was cool.

Happy New Year, y’all! Let’s make it a great one!

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