Tastefully Trendy

A life and fashion blog by Sarah Beth

Tag: sweater (page 1 of 3)

Self-Care: Part 2 – Self-Love

Writing a blog only once a week makes me feel a lot of pressure to actually say something meaningful. Telling you about why I put a certain shirt with a certain pair of pants is fine when I’m producing content several times a week, but if I’m only saying something once every 7 days, shouldn’t it be something worth hearing? Aren’t all the other bloggers saying significant things on important topics, like faith and (successful) relationships and politics? Or even how to ship lap?

But, I suppose that’s the problem – bowing to pressure and comparison. I can only be me. I’ve always only been able to be me, and any attempt to do otherwise has failed miserably (cue awkward memories of high school and college). And you can only be you. Sure, we all want to be the best versions of ourselves, but I actually just read an article about how our culture’s obsession with self-improvement leads to even more depression and anxiety. We’ll never fully arrive – there will always be room to become an even better best, and it can be exhausting trying.

So, I guess that leads me to my second point on the topic of self-care. Self-love. I think you all know me well-enough to know that I’m not what you might call a hippy…. I have a pretty traditional view of Christianity that includes words like “sin” and “righteousness”. I think there are moral absolutes and definite rights and wrongs.

But, I also think there is a lot more room for grace than we give ourselves. I’m not just talking about faith matters – I mean, grace to eat a cupcake if we’ve had a really bad day and just need something to cheer us up. Or grace NOT to eat the cupcake, if we are in a season where prioritizing our health is important. Grace to say no to things that we genuinely don’t want to do, or to put ourselves (our families, our sleep, our health) first, instead of feeling obligated to do what we think society might expect of us.

I don’t pretend to be an expert on self-care, let’s be real. In fact, I’ve never been sick as often as I was the first year I moved to Nashville. I blamed the allergens, but honestly, part of it was learning how 30-something year old me needed to operate. And part of how I need to operate is just to say no. Sometimes, that means saying no to staying out just a little bit later, when I know I’ll be exhausted the next day and more susceptible to getting sick. Sometimes, it means saying no to eating fast food for the 4th time that week, because I know I’m not feeding my body well, for either the short or long-term. Sometimes, saying no is listening to that Still Small Voice who always knows what’s best for me – even when I can’t see what’s up ahead – and making my decisions accordingly.

Do I do this perfectly? Good lord, no. Do I do it well? Even that’s debatable. But I’m trying.

So, what’s the takeaway here? Well, there are a few practical things I regularly try to do to take care of myself. These include:

  • Getting at least 7-8 hours of sleep a night. And sometimes taking a nap in my car at lunch if I need a little extra boost. No shame in my game.
  • Eating healthy foods. I’ve learned what my body likes and what it doesn’t, and in 2018, I don’t think any of us are really confused about what’s healthy. I try to keep this in mind at least 75% of the time.
  • Friendships. I’m such an extrovert, if I’m not around people at some point during a 24 hour period, I start to go crazy. But, even for those who are less extremely extroverted than me, fellowship, laughter, and companionship is always good for the soul.
  • Down time. Because of my extroverted nature, it’s really easy for me to just go, go, go. I’ve learned, though, that a little time to decompress – read, binge TV, do chores, or otherwise just exist – is good for me and gives me the opportunity to be still with my thoughts.
  • Daily devotional time. Spending time in prayer and reading the Bible (as well as other inspirational books) keeps me centered and focused on the things that truly matter, and it’s the most surefire way to find peace in stressful times. Non-Christians can also benefit from a daily reflective practice, but for those who adhere to a faith, I think this step is crucial.

Those are some of the ways I stay healthy – physically, emotionally, mentally, and even spiritually. Yours may be different. You may be someone who needs time in nature on a regular basis. Or maybe you’re an introvert who needs to protect your alone time. Maybe a relaxing bath and a glass of wine is all you need.

But whatever it is, be sure you make time for those things. Self-love isn’t selfishness. Even the Bible compares Christ’s love to how we as humans nourish and cherish our bodies (Ephesians 5:29). By being sure that we stay healthy, we’re then much more equipped to do the things that we need to do, and to be a blessing to other people.

Another way that I take care of myself is by fostering my creative side through clothes, so with no further ado…

It’s already that time, y’all. My first sweater of the season, although I paired it with white jeans to help ease the transition from summer to fall – never an easy task for me.

The sweater is actually a sweater dress, I think, and at some point in the season, I may wear it with leggings or tights. But, for now, I just did a half tuck in the front to make it seem like it’s a normal length.

I’m also trying to work on my poses, and this not-looking-directly-at-the-camera thing seems to be the way to go. How am I doing?

What are some of the ways you stay healthy by taking care of yourself first? Let me know in the comments – maybe we’ll all get some other good ideas!

<3,

SB

On Wednesdays, We Wear Pink

In honor of last Friday’s showing of Mean Girls at a local brewery (seriously, if you want to sit outside, eat a delicious pizza, and watch a recent classic movie, come visit me! This happens every Friday. Because, Nashville is the best), here is my best pink outfit.

Pink striped pants, pink sweater, and some silver accents to keep me from looking too much like the girl’s toys aisle. The thing about my office is that there is no predicting whether it will be hot, or cold, or completely seasonally appropriate. So, I just wear whatever I feel like (a sweater when it’s 85 degrees outside. Sure, why not!), and hope for the best.

If you can, zoom in on the pants – they’re pink and white striped, and I love them.

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!

Sweaters in Summer

I’ve been into this whole “not-washing-your-hair-too-often”, thing. They say it’s better for your hair (not sure why, but “they” say it, which is good enough for me), and I think it probably helps my color last a little longer. Also, hashtag lazy.

But, now and then I stretch it a little too long… even the headband isn’t helping hide my poor decisions today. Oh well.

I can’t tell you what prompted this outfit inspiration, except to say that the dress isn’t work appropriate without a sweater (too much shoulder), so I went trolling my closet for something that wouldn’t look frumpy, and I kinda love the long-cardigan-over-a-dress look. I don’t think I’ve ever tried it before, but this one is a winner!
1 - white dress gray sweaterHow do you style long sweaters, or are you not into that trend? What do you think of them over the dress? I’m really into it, but also open to differing opinions. Let’s talk sweaters in summer!

Pineapple Fields Forever

A lot has changed since this photo was taken. My hair is longer; my waistline a bit thicker (insert sobbing emoji), I no longer own that sweater…and I don’t live in Georgia any more!

But, the outfit is still cute and in-season again, so here we go.

I so love a good pineapple. It’s always so weird to me what shapes become trendy. A couple years ago, everything had swallow (the birds) on it. Then we went through a really big owl phase. Cherries have had their moment. Now it’s pineapple’s turn.

And I can’t explain why I love them so much – is there anything inherently cute about a pineapple shape? Honestly, not really. But, I do. Marketing gets me every time.
1 - pineapple shorts, white cardiganDo you get into particular objects as trends? What are some of your favorites? In 6th grade, I went an entire week wearing a different smiley-faced theme outfit. Just because I could. Have you ever done anything similar?

Rubber Ducky, You’re the One

I really like working in a “creative” job environment, because my fashion risks and quirks are appreciated, and I have a little more freedom in expression.

This duck sweater, for example, was a HUGE hit. I mean, I get why – it’s one of the cutest pieces in my closet. But, it’s not exactly traditionally conservative.

I did make it a little more conservative and less lounging-around the house, by adding pumps. My distressed jeans do not meet my parents’ approval, but they add some edge to the whole look and keep me from being too cutesy.

1 - duck sweater
What do you think of the ducks? Would you wear it, or do you just like it from afar (because, I know you like it – it’s not possible to think this sweater is anything other than adorable)?

Holey Knees

In the spirit of moving on from winter, here is another outfit I won’t be able to wear anymore. Although I prefer the warmer weather, I do love a good cozy sweater (and scarf!), so I’m a little sad to put these two away.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but distressed jeans are all the rage now, and I kinda love this pair I have from Target. My only complaint is that I wish the holes weren’t right at both of my knees. It just kinda feels weird, and my favorite part of the distressed look is the white “strings” or whatever from the denim, and with holes at the knees, you don’t really get that look.

Guess I’ll just have to buy another pair with holes elsewhere! (Also, can we talk about how I was in elementary school the last time holey jeans were in, and I begged my mom to let me cut holes in the knees of my jeans? I’m old, guys – trends are circling back.)
1 - plaid scarf, sweaterHow do you feel about distressed jeans (or cozy sweaters)? Did you wear them the last time they were in, or is this a first for you?

Twofer Tuesday Returns

Y’all, I’m struggling with my blog this year.  For one thing, I have three jobs at the moment, which means my free time is super limited.  When that happens, my blog begins to feel like more of a chore that I have to squeeze in than something fun, and I don’t want that to happen.

For another, I just can’t find the right place in my new house to take pictures. I think my backyard might be pretty, but then it’s cold, and sometimes it rains…

And, I don’t really like my hair right now.  I can’t figure out my bangs situation – someone good with hair give me advice on bangs in 2016.

All that to say, please bear with me as I try to get a routine back up. It may be slow going, but I’m not ready to give up, if you all are willing to not give up on me. <3

With that, here is a favorite outfit from sometime before I even moved to Nashville.  I don’t remember now why I needed to change my shoes, except that I wanted to transition from day to night, and this was my way of doing it.  Also, I’m counting this as a twofer Tuesday.

1 - purple skirt, flats, heelsHope you all are doing well.  Give me your thoughts on my hair dilemma, Grammy’s fashion, or whatever else you want to talk about.  Let’s get this party started again!

Twofer Tuesday: The Unrelateds

Hey everyone!  Hope you all had a wonderful Labor Day weekend (ideally, without laboring, but I know we’re not all so lucky).

Today’s two outfits are completely unrelated, but since I already have an excuse to post two looks on Tuesday, I thought I’d take advantage of it.

The first prompt was Distressed but Well-Dressed and it happened over the weekend; but, the outfit really was too cute not to share (please note: this t-shirt will appear again shortly…don’t judge!)  You all know I love my acid-washed jean jacket!  Other than a pair of distressed jean shorts, it’s really all that I have to fit the prompt.  I’ll probably invest in some ripped jeans at some point, but I’m typically a little more of a tidy dresser than to really embrace the distressed look.

1 - Distressed but well-dressedNext up is today’s prompt: Boho Beauty.  Boho also isn’t really my style – I just feel like an imposter when I wear it.  But, I happened to very recently snag this cute poncho sweater for $12 at DressUp, so I thankfully had something to wear.  Really, this isn’t how I’ll probably style this sweater most of the time – I envision it with leggings and booties and something long sleeve under it.  But, for now, it works.

1 - Boho BeautyHow do you feel about the distressed and Boho trends?  Have you tried them – are they all you ever wear or just an occasional change-up for your wardrobe?  What would you have worn for these two prompts?  I’d love to hear from you!

Goodbye, Snow Queen

As I was going through some of my older outfits to see what I hadn’t yet posted,  I found this last look from winter, and I figured I’d better blog about it now.  I don’t want it sitting in my picture folder as a bad omen welcoming winter back for one last final breath.

So, here is a look I wore when it was particularly frigid a few weeks ago.  I usually reserve my knit headband for outer wear, but that just means I hardly ever wear it.  So, on this particular day, I decided to stop wasting the cuteness and wear it all day.  Other than being a little itchy, it worked out great.

I matched it with one of my knit infinity scarves (that I would love to loop, if only it were a little longer/less suffocating), and my light weight sweater with the golden thread woven through it, with gold jewelry accents.  To finish off my neutral look, I added a pair of taupe boots.

Now that I’m thinking about it, I kinda wish I’d worn winter white pants with this outfit.  I like all monotone in winter; it looks so snow queen  But, oh well – maybe next year.  I’m definitely putting these bad boys away for at least the next 8 months.

1 - knit headband, infinity scarf

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