There are no shortage of outfit shots all over Instagram, my page included. But the dirty little (not so) secret is that many of them are staged and not exactly what the person wore on any given day.
I’ve definitely been guilty of this myself, but these days I’m trying to keep things much more authentic. Because there are the outfits that look great in theory, but if they don’t actually fit into your life then what’s the point?
Last week we were visiting my family back home in Minnesota. It was so wonderful to be with my entire family, but it was also hard. My dad is once again facing cancer, but this time the prognosis is not good. I keep saying “not good” when I talk about it because that is literally what the doctors have told us. He has just begun a very aggressive chemo treatment which will make him incredibly sick. We’re just hoping that being sick in the short term will give us more of a long term.
So, with that all in mind, I did not feel like doing a fun-loving post on our week in my home state. It felt incredibly inauthentic and to be honest, was pretty much the last thing I wanted to do.
But I don’t want to pretend like it didn’t exist, either. Which got me to thinking… life is real and we should keep it that way. So is fashion, so why not celebrate that. This will be the first post in a series that recaps the actual outfits I wore in the previous week. Yes, there will be items that are no longer in stock, yes, there will definitely be pieces on repeat, and no, not every outfit will look perfect and styled.
But life isn’t perfect and styled, so let’s embrace it.
My goal with any outfit post is to simply provide inspiration. I honestly have no interest in selling you a sweater or dress you don’t love or need. If you see something I am wearing and decide you have to have it, well that makes me really happy because you were inspired by my style. And if you see something I’m wearing and it encourages you to recreate the look or a version of the look from items in your closet, that makes me equally thrilled! Because you don’t have to buy anything I’m wearing in order to be happy or showcase your personal style.
And since we’re keeping it real about the realities of life, I was not able to get a picture of everything I wore while in Minnesota. Some days it just felt really inappropriate, or I was too busy trying to be present with my family. For example, we went with my dad to his appointment at The Mayo Clinic on Friday. I did not take a picture of that look. There’s a time and place and that wasn’t it.
So, I swear this is an actual picture of what I actually wore on this day. And yes, I know it wasn’t necessarily the most practical choice, but I’m not always the most practical person!
I wore this dress to take my niece and nephew fishing for the first time. It wasn’t exactly an expedition worthy of angler glory, but they were certainly thrilled to catch their first sunnies. My brother, on the other hand, wasn’t so thrilled to have a fishy aroma on his hands hours later after his fish capture and release duties.
I provided plenty of moral support while wearing an old sundress from last year. I’ve worn it a few other times including this year in Boston, and last spring. The weather was cooler than normal, so I threw on my trusty old J. Crew denim jacket and was good to go. Which you'll see is a theme with each occasion in the past as well.
At no point did I touch a fish, so in the end I felt I made a very practical fashion decision.
On Monday we went to Como Zoo in Minneapolis. It’s a family tradition to visit this zoo and its carnival rides every summer. My four-year-old nephew would never let us live it down if we skipped a year.
It was a little warmer on this day, so I didn’t need the jacket. I wore this skirt that I picked up while in England last month (also worn here) and tied a knot in an Old Navy t-shirt to complete the look. I wanted to be hands free in case I had to run after the kids, so I went for this old & Other Stories bag.
This was definitely my favorite look of the trip and I could not wait to wear it! I had been eyeing this dress for a while after seeing it on a couple bloggers, so when I found it on Rent the Runway I snapped it up. I mean, it’s pretty, but I couldn’t bring myself to spend over $500 on it. I wanted to! But I mustered some restraint.
On this day Marc and I took my parents to downtown Minneapolis so we could show them a WeWork building. Marc has worked for WeWork for about 20 months now and he will take any opportunity he has to visit a building in a new city. And since my parents had never seen a WeWork and weren’t entirely sure what it was about, we gave them the full tour.
After leaving WeWork in the North Loop we grabbed a drink on the patio of a nearby restaurant. This was our kid-free afternoon, so I felt it was a good time to break out this Chinti & Parker dress. I paired it with the Hermes Oran sandals and my well-loved Clare V. bag. I bought this tote two seasons ago and it is still one of my go-to options. Which is probably why they still make it each year.
Another day, another zoo! My family’s favorite place to go every summer (and every Christmas Eve) is the Minnesota Zoo. We’ve been going since my brother and I can remember and it will always take us back to our childhood.
So, when I found out they had a baby llama and an entire llama exhibit I knew we had to go! You might ask as a joke, who was more excited for this zoo trip, my four-year-old nephew or me. But had you been there it would have been incredibly obvious.
Hands down it was me.
And once again I pulled out a look that was a bit extra for the zoo, but I liked it! Marc said I looked like I was about to go on an expedition, which felt extremely appropriate since I was out to find llamas.
The sun was finally out so I knew I had to grab my Janessa Leone hat to protect my face, and I paired it with this dress that I also picked up in England last month. I love the palm print and how it’s bold but subtle because of the gray and white tones.
Seeing the llamas totally made my day! And I think they appreciated that I dressed up for the occasion.
Wednesday night was date night. My parents stayed home with the kiddos and my brother and his wife, and Marc and I set off for downtown Minneapolis to meet my oldest childhood friend, Lucy.
I wore this J. Crew Factory cami I bought on sale the day before and my new favorite pair of jeans. They’re from Abercrombie and I'm still shocked about it. I haven’t set foot in an Abercrombie since I was in high school and always ignored them after I hit adulthood. But I recently found an amazing (and affordable) bodysuit on their website and as I browsed around I stumbled onto the denim. Not only are these under $40 but they also come in three lengths, Short, Regular, and Long. I ordered a ton of sizes to try them out and was so pleasantly surprised. I needed a size up from my regular size and they are perfect.
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