While I’m feeling quite ready for fall weather to arrive, I’m also trying to enjoy the last blast of summer.  Last weekend, the temps were moderate (as in 80′s instead of 90′s) so my boyfriend and I went out for some nice summer bike riding.  I love that I’m learning how to blend style and practicality while out riding my bike.


I ended up with a nice blue, yellow and brown color scheme.  Someone commented a few weeks ago that I seem to like blue.  Yes, it’s very true.  I’m trying to expand my color spectrum now, but I must admit that it’s still my favorite color to wear.  It brings out my blue eyes.


One nice thing about Florida is that I’ll probably get to go riding more often once it cools down.  I find biking much more enjoyable when I’m not pouring down sweat.


See that tree blooming in the background?  That means that fall is almost here.  Whee!


By the way, Keens are the best casual shoes ever!  And so comfy.

Tee: Old Navy
Shorts: Ann Taylor LOFT (re-conned)
Sandals: Keen Sarasotas
Purse: Timbuk2
Bangles: Jill Popowich
Earrings: June Designs

(As I’m adjusting to a new work schedule this week, and as my tripod is broken, this week will be another set of scheduled topic-related posts. Next week, I’ll get back to regular daily outfit posting)

I’m getting into the swing of work again.  I’m starting a new job later this week as a temporary librarian at an elementary school.  This is set to last until Thanksgiving, at which time I’ll go back to my old job if I don’t get a permanent position.  I’m really excited about it, because I’ll be gaining valuable work experience.  I’ll also be working full time for the first time in awhile, so I’ll have to really learn how to budget time.  I’m finding that I’m enjoying my blog reading most when I have a solid block of time to read, which is usually on Thursdays or on the weekend.  So if I comment on your blog several days after you posted, that’s probably why.  I’m still managing to get posts written, but the biggest challenge will be getting good outfit shots.  I have to be at work at 7:00 am, so I leave the house before the sun rises.  I’ll have to adapt to taking pics in the afternoon I guess.

Anyhow, I promised you a beach trip re-cap, and this is it.


This was the view from our hotel room.  We stayed at this beautiful and quirky hotel, the Nordvind at Treasure Island, FL.   Everyone there was super nice, and the location was perfect, because there weren’t insane amounts of tourists on this part of the beach.


We frequently crossed the bridge to Madeira Beach and John’s Pass Village, a fun and somewhat touristy destination.  The above image is a view of some construction debris from the bridge.  For some reason, I find industrial things really beautiful.

beach reading

I love to get in some good beach reading, and this time it was Vonnegut’s Breakfast of Champions.

beach casual
Swimsuit: Target
Tube Top: Target (thrifted)
Skirt: Ann Taylor LOFT
Sandals: Born Savory
Tote: Old Navy
Bangles: Jill Popowich

I try to vary my swim suit top necklines so that my tan lines don’t get too strong.  Normally, I don’t like bohemian styles, but there’s something about the crazy casualness of the beach that makes this paisley top fit in perfectly.

keen sarasota

And you’ve already met my new Keen Sarasotas a few days ago.  Best beach shoes ever.

That’s it for my beach re-cap.  Hopefully I’ll get back into the swing of regular outfit posts soon.

Going with Kim’s wonderful inspiration calendar again, I went with monochromatic blue for Monday.  This challenge surprised me – I figured it would be easy, since I have lots of blue in my wardrobe, but when trying to put something together, I realized that many of the shades don’t work well together.  I finally went with blue jeans (which were fine indoors, but oppressively hot outdoors), a tank and a cardigan (which was indoors only).  I added some contrast by wearing a navy scarf as a headband, carrying a navy tote, and throwing in some brown sandals so it wasn’t too monochromatic.  Neutral silver jewelry topped it all off.

head to toe

That cardigan was a recent Anthropologie sale purchase.  I adore it, but I hadn’t worn it yet because of the ridiculous heat wave we’ve been experiencing in Florida lately.  It was just right for my nice, chilly office though.  What I love most about this cardigan is the gorgeous details, like the fabric covered buttons, the matching placket lining,the adorable pockets, and the contrasting bands.  The texture is also very unique, as it’s a reverse stockinette in fair isle.  This will be getting tons of wear in the fall.



This outfit also lets me debut my new Born Savory sandals.  I got these a few weeks ago, while looking for a comfortable, strappy sandal.  They took a few days to break in, but now they’re relatively comfortable, only giving me blisters if I do lots of walking.  I love them so much, I’m thinking about buying a second pair in orange or blue, since they’re on sale right now at 6pm.


In the afternoon, I ditched the cardigan, traded the sandals for Chucks, and played tourist with my boyfriend and some friends of ours.  We checked out the touristy parts of our city, and then went bowling.   You can imagine my crazy happy dance when I got a strike.


Cardigan: Anthropologie
Tank: Old Navy
Jeans: Express Stella
Sandals: Born Savory
Scarf (worn as headband): Vintage
Earrings: June Designs
Necklace: June Designs
Bangles: Jill Popowich
Tote: Thrifted and re-conned

Sometimes you find an item in your wardrobe that is made from good fabric, but doesn’t fit you in exactly the way you want it to.  When something like this happens, it’s best to either take the item to a good tailor who can understand your vision for what the garment should be, or if you’ve got the sewing skills, re-con it yourself.  I had worn this (formerly) strapless dress with tops layered over it, but for the most part, I found it difficult to wear.  Having that much khaki close to my face washes me out, and because it was super casual, I didn’t have many opportunities to wear it on its own, other than the beach and Busch Gardens.  When trying to figure out what to wear with a pair or brown leggings I recently purchased, I started to try wearing the dress in different ways.  And then, I started to figure out exactly how I wanted the dress to look.  Lots of sewing, spare fabric, elastic, and seam ripping later, and I had a brand new dress.  


Unfortunately, I didn’t take any pictures while re-conning it and I think a tutorial might be really confusing without images.  To quickly describe what I did, I flipped the top over itself, making the dress shorter and placing the elastic under the bust.  I stitched it down like this, and removed some fabric from underneath to created the straps.  I took some scrap brown jersey knit fabric, made a tube with elastic encased in it, and stitched that to the top of the dress.  I then added the straps, and tacked the brown section to them so it wouldn’t fall down.  I realize that might not make a lot of sense.  Tutorial writing doesn’t seem to be my strong point.


By adding that strip of brown at the top, the khaki doesn’t overwhelm and wash out my face.  The neutral of the khaki and olive green print allows me to pair beautiful, bright accents with it, like my jewelry and purse.


Dress: Target (thrifted and re-conned)
Leggings: Target
Purse: Easy Spirit
Flip flops: Columbia
Necklace: Express
Bangle: Gift from friend
Earrings: June Designs 

Last week, I finished up my comprehensive exam for my Library Science degree.  Basically, I was given a choice of three topics, and had one week to write a well-researched 8 to 10 page paper.  This meant lots of sitting in coffee shops while drinking vanilla lattes and reading research articles.  Hence, most of the outfits I wore were what I consider “study chic”, very casual and comfortable.  For some reason, this also meant wearing my favorite pair of jeans all week, which is weird because up until a few weeks ago, I was rarely wearing jeans at all.  But with the discovery of the ability to peg and the loss of a couple pounds (which makes them not as painfully restricting as they were), I found myself wearing them constantly while studying.

I didn’t get very many outfit pictures, mainly because I was too busy frantically studying, but I did get a shot of one outfit that pretty well sums up my study uniform: pegged jeans, knit blouse, cardigan and sandals.


Today I’m taking the Florida Teacher Certification Exam, and if I’ll goes well, I’ll begin applying for media specialist positions within the next few weeks!  Wish me luck!

Polo: Old Navy
Cardigan: Ann Taylor Loft
Jeans: Express
Sandals: Clarks Rime
Bag: Timbuk2
Earrings: June Designs
Bangle: Vintage

Today, it was rainy and blah.  This type of weather usually makes me want to stay inside all day.  But I think if I had a nice pair of Wellington boots, a pretty umbrella and a stylish raincoat like the lovely ladies of academichic have in these three posts, I would be ready to take on the rain and jump in every puddle.  With that in mind, here’s a selection of wellies that I’ve found lately:


Printed Critter Wellies from JCrew  $49.50



Sperry Top-Sider Pelican Boots  $74.95 (on Zappos)



Cougar Fauna  $84 (on Zappos)



Gabriella Rocha Tall Checkers  $45 (on Zappos)



Hunter Original in Yellow  $114 (on Zappos)



As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I went on a biking expedition on the Pinellas trail earlier this week.  I went with my boyfriend, Carlo, and a good friend of ours, Chris.  The day started slightly chilly, but we warmed up with riding.  Thus, I kept switching up my layers to adjust to the temperature.


(Me demonstrating the effectiveness of layers)

We drove into downtown Tarpon Springs with our bikes on the back of the car, and then started off by riding to the sponge docks, a popular tourist attraction.  There’s lots of kitschy Greek shops there selling sponges, shell jewelry, and other nautical delights.  I got an awesome sea captain’s hat at one.  I’ve got a hunch that this could be the next newsboy.  I also paid a visit to my favorite soap shop, Get a Guru, where I purchased some lovely rosemary and poppyseed olive oil soap.


(My fav soap shop)

We got a tasty Greek lunch of dolmades, spankopita and saganaki (opa cheese), as well as some fantastic Greek rose wine.  After that, we hopped back on our bikes, took a quick stop back in downtown Tarpon Springs, and then started on the trail.  


(Carlo and Chris on the trail)

We rode all the way to downtown Dunedin, which is about a ten miles ride, give or take a bit.  The trail is gorgeous, and you get to see some amazing scenery.  In Dunedin, we stopped for about an hour or so to get some refreshments and relax.  Then it was back on the bikes to watch the sunset on the way back to Tarpon Springs  All in all, a fantastic day.


(Carlo and I on our bikes)

Note: For those interested in bike info, my bike is a 1979 Schwinn Suburban, manufactured in Chicago.  Carlo’s is a new Schwinn Collegiate 7.

The weather has been terrific in Florida lately, perfect for a day of bike riding.  My boyfriend and I are both avid bicyclists, so we and a friend decided to tackle a portion of the Pinellas Trail, a gorgeous paved bike trail  in Pinellas county.  The temperature was just chilly enough to need a long sleeve, so I decided to use layers to my advantage and be prepared for the changes in body temperature that come with exercise.


Long sleeve: American Eagle (thrifted)
T-shirt: bought at a theme park
Shorts: Ann Taylor Loft (hemmed by me)
Shoes: Converse
Purse: Timbuk2
Earrings: June Designs
Bracelets: Jill Popowich

The long sleeve layering was an item I got on my recent consignment trip, so I was happy to get to use it.  The t-shirt is from a theme park

The shorts are some hand-me-down dress pants that I hemmed, because I have a lot of trouble finding shorts that fit me in the stores.  Shoes are plain ole’ Chuck Taylors, which are pretty comfy for cycling.  The bag is Timbuk2, and I bought it in New York.  It has lots of handy compartments, and the added benefit of being relatively water-proof, which is important for outdoor activities.  I kept my jewelry and make-up simple, because I knew that I would be getting a bit sweaty, and I didn’t want anything getting snagged on my helmet.

Be prepared for a post tomorrow on all the details of this super-fun day trip!  Stay tuned for part 2!

This week is vacation week for me, and the weather is beautiful.  Aside from some rain and cloudiness yesterday, it’s been sunny, windy and cool.  Perfect weather for me to break out this light-weight jacket that I love for casual days.  I bought this jacket at a consignment store years ago.  I altered it considerably, taking out the hood, bringing in the sides to make it more fitted, creating slits at the bottom to accommodate my  hips.  It really is a fabulous jacket, and it’s perfect for days like today.


That cuff bracelet comes from a recent shopping trip to a consignment shop I used to go to all the time in high school.  I hadn’t been there in awhile, but I’m trying to explore more used clothing stores because of my temporary ban on mall shopping.  I found this lovely $3 bracelet just as I was checking out, and immediately scooped it up.  I’ve been looking for a silver cuff bracelet for awhile, but haven’t been able to afford the ones I find.  This one was definitely in my price range, and I love how the patina can work with both my oxidized sterling silver and my regular, brighter sterling.

Be prepared for some casual outfit postings, as well as re-caps of the fun adventures I hopefully will have on my vacation.  I see the possibility of a good bit of sewing and biking, so I’ll be sure to take pics.


Jacket: The Limited (altered by me)
T-shirt: Target
Jeans: Express
Shoes: Born Codders
Purse: Dickies
Necklace: Kira Ferrer
Bracelet: ?? (consignment)

Friday I had a lecture from 10 – 4, so I wanted to make sure that I dressed in comfortable clothes.  My go-to ensemble for things like this is a jersey dress with flats.  Comfortable and put together.  Layer a belted cardigan over that, and you’re ready for even the most frigid Florida air conditioner.  Not to mention the fact that this style is seriously flattering on me.

I got this necklace way, way back, in my high school days.  One of my neighbors was having one of those home jewelry sale things, and I bought it.  Which is funny, because I really didn’t wear a lot of dressy jewelry back then.  Somehow, I’ve managed to hold onto it over the years.  Truely, pearls are a classic, timeless item to have.


That purse is an oil-cloth tote that I got from a thrift store and re-covered with polka dot canvas.  It is able to hold everything I need for a long day in class.  And it lets me continue the polka-dot them of the bracelet.  I like how the necklace gently echoes this as well.


Dress: American Rag (via Revolve)
Blue Cami: Old Navy
Cardigan: Ann Taylor Loft
Belt: Vintage (via Sherry’s Yesterdaze)
Shoes: Clarks Rime
Bangle: Thrifted
Necklace: ??
Purse: Thrifted and re-covered

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