common threads challenge: week 3

I’ve got another round of outfits from the Common Threads Challenge to share with you today! The further along we get in this challenge, the more I’m relying on Pinterest and other bloggers for styling ideas–my own creativity is just about tapped out at this point. But I’m actually enjoying looking to others for inspiration!

Monday: black knit blazer

Chilly fall temperatures arrived rather abruptly last week, so I struggled a bit with how to wear this blazer. It was a typical fall day in that it started out in the 40s, but was in the mid-70s by the afternoon, so I decided that a thick knit dress with knee-high boots was a good compromise between the two temperature extremes. It’s difficult to see, but I also added my elephant necklace for fun. (You can see a closer picture of the necklace in this post).

black knit blazer: Caslon, similar // striped sweatshirt dress: Merona, similar // cognac knee-high boots: Timberland, similar // gold elephant necklace: Ann Taylor, similar

Tuesday: cognac booties

I actually stole the outfit for this idea from Alex–I loved how the navy gingham, olive, and white denim looked together, so I pretty much copied the look exactly. I hope she doesn’t mind 😉 I liked the way this outfit turned out, and it makes me want to incorporate white jeans into more of my outfits this winter.

navy gingham shirt: J.Crew Factory, almost exact // olive utility jacket: Old Navy, exact // white skinny jeans: Loft, similar // cognac booties: Jessica Simpson, almost exact

Wednesday: olive tee

I’ll be real here and say this is my least favorite outfit of the week. I didn’t have a whole lot of time to devote to planning this outfit (or photographing it…) due to a sick toddler and a gynecologist appointment I really didn’t want to skip. The cardigan has more of a burgundy hue to it than these pictures suggest (this seems to be a recurring problem with my camera). The cardigan is also just not in good shape and shorter than I prefer…so it might be destined for the donate pile.

burgundy open front cardigan: Merona, similar // olive tee: Banana Republic Factory, exact // skinny jeans: BP, similar // taupe booties: Dolce Vita, exact

Thursday: burgundy skirt

For this outfit, I turned to Pinterest for a little guidance. I found this pin, and I liked the look of black heels with the blue shirt and burgundy pants. I tried out the color combination myself, and I think it works! I went full-on preppy with some pearl earrings and my Kate Spade watch.

blue button-up shirt: Lands’ End, exact // burgundy skirt: Loft, similar // black wedges: Jessica Simpson, exact // pearl stud earrings: gift, similar // black leather strap watch: Kate Spade, exact // gray tortoise sunglasses: Warby Parker Banks, similar

Friday: chambray shirt

I decided to get a bit more creative with how I wore my chambray shirt this week by layering it under another tee. It’s hard to go wrong with stripes, right?

striped boatneck tee: Merona, similar // chambray shirt: J.Crew, exact // black skinny jeans: Loft, similar // cognac suede wedge booties: White Mountain, almost exact // gold locket necklace: J.Crew, similar


So, I think I’ve reached the sweet spot of the challenge–the point when I’ve exhausted my “standard” combinations and start trying new things. It’s at this point that I start to realize the versatility of each item in my closet. Here’s hoping the trend continues for these last few days of the CTC!

If you’ve been participating in the Common Threads Challenge, please link up with the button below–we’d love to see your outfits!

Linking up with Thursday Moda. 

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common threads challenge: week 2

I’m back for another Common Threads Challenge check-in! (If you have no idea what I’m talking about, this post should help!) I’m really starting to enjoy the challenge, as it simplifies getting dressed in the morning. Evidently, limiting my options is key to streamlining the process.

Monday: cognac booties

I just recently got this chambray shirt dress, so naturally, I’ve been eager to wear it. I knew I wanted to wear the dress with my cognac booties, but those two items alone seemed a bit too plain. It was really too warm to wear a scarf, but I wore one anyway. I’m just going to pretend it’s fall now, OK?

chambray shirt dress: Old Navy, exact // blue tapestry scarf: Old Navy, similar // cognac booties: Jessica Simpson, almost exact

Tuesday: olive tee

Once again, I knew I wanted to wear two specific pieces together: my olive tee and this black + ivory skirt. Technically, I wore those two exact pieces together last summer (during my first Take One, Pass It On challenge), so I tried to “fall-ify” the outfit a bit with some booties and a light jacket. I really liked the end result–I think this might be my favorite look from the week!

olive tee: Banana Republic Factory, exact // denim jacket: Old Navy, exact // tribal skirt: Loft Outlet, similar // taupe booties: Dolce Vita, exact // gold locket necklace: J.Crew, similar

Wednesday: burgundy skirt

As predicted in my last week, I struggled with this item a bit this time around. I like the combination of ivory, burgundy, and cognac, but I couldn’t quite find the right pieces to execute what I had in mind. Next time, I might try mixing in camel and blue, as shown in this pin.

ivory tee: Banana Republic Factory, exact // burgundy skirt: Loft, similar // cognac wedges: Jessica Simpson, exact // pearl tassel necklace: Loft, similar

Thursday: chambray shirt

This look is the most boring one of the week, for sure…but at least I tried to add some interest with my gold flats.

chambray shirt: J.Crew, exact // black ankle pants: Banana Republic Factory, exact // gold flats: Summit by White Mountain, exact// black leather strap watch: Kate Spade, similar // gray tortoise sunglasses: Warby Parker Banks, similar

Friday: black blazer

I always like looks that involve a chic blazer with jeans, but I’m not terribly at pulling off such looks myself. I gave it a go for casual Friday, adding in some red stripes and leopard for fun. The outfit kind of fell apart by the end of the day though–I had to take off my blazer once the temperature reached the 80s, and I traded my heels for flats after work to go grocery shopping. So I guess this type of outfit is not terribly practical for my current lifestyle.

red stripe tee: J.Crew Factory, similar // black knit blazer: Caslon, similar // skinny jeans: BP, similar // leopard pumps: I.N.C., almost exact // black round sunglasses: Amazon, similar


Except for the burgundy skirt, I haven’t had too much trouble generating new outfit ideas. One thing I am conscious of is mixing up which day of the week I wear each item, as I tend to see the same people on various days of the week. For example, I attend a weekly seminar every Tuesday, and I want to be sure I’m not wear the same skirt four weeks in a row! I doubt anyone would notice (or care!), but I’m just a little obsessive like that.

If you’ve been participating in the Common Threads Challenge, please link up with the button below–we’d love to see your outfits!

Linking up with Thursday Moda.

common threads challenge: week 1

It’s been awhile since I last posted! My husband accidentally broke my tripod (not really sure how–I just know that the pressure washer was involved…), and I’m entering into serious writing season for my PhD; the combination of the two has put blogging on the back-burner. All that being said, I am still participating in the Common Threads Challenge, and I wanted to be sure to share my first few outfits with you.

Monday: olive tee

olive tee: Banana Republic Factory, exact // black skinny jeans: Loft, similar // black leather flats: BCBGeneration, similar // leopard scarf: Joe Fresh, similar

To be honest, I really wanted to copy this exact outfit, but I decided I should try to put my own spin on it. Plus, I was just really in the mood to wear a scarf! Olive + leopard is definitely a go-to around here.

Tuesday: burgundy skirt

black stripe 3/4 sleeve tee: Merona, similar // burgundy skirt: Loft, similar // black leather flats: BCBGeneration, similar // black leather strap watch: Kate Spade, exact // gray tortoise sunglasses: Warby Parker Banks, similar

I think this look is the winner of the week. I say that because a stranger stopped me on my way in to work and said, “You look cute!” I almost wish that I had a neck scarf or something to give the outfit a little French girl flair.

Wednesday: chambray shirt

chambray shirt: J.Crew, exact // mustard jeans: Loft, similar // two tone wedge sandals: b.o.c., similar // reversible tote: Street Level, exact // cognac leather strap watch: Wristology, exact

I’ve actually worn some version of this outfit several times, although I most often wear it with my striped chambray popover. I was tempted to wear my cognac booties with this outfit, but ultimately decided I would go one CTC item at a time, at least for this first week.

Thursday: black knit blazer

black knit blazer: Caslon, similar // spotted blouse: Loft, similar // olive pants: Banana Republic, similar // black wedges: Jessica Simpson, exact // gray tortoise sunglasses: Warby Parker Banks, similar

I’ve had this pin sitting on my “must re-create” list for a long time now. I finally got around to it, but I’m not so excited about the end result. For starters, why does my blazer look lopsided?! And perhaps I should have left the top untucked. Oh, well.

Friday: cognac booties

plum tee: Banana Republic Factory, similar // ivory cardigan: Merona, similar // skinny jeans: BP, similar // gold pendant necklace: J.Crew, similar // cognac booties: Jessica Simpson, almost exact

Let me just be honest and say that this outfit was completely weather inappropriate. The day started off cool, but by mid-day, it was up to the 80s–not exactly sweater and bootie temps. This sweater is gigantic (and hence, not very flattering), partially because I bought it when I was pregnant two years ago…but I think I love it a little more just because it’s so over-sized.


This first week hasn’t been too difficult–we’re just beginning with our five pieces! That being said, I think the item I’ll have the most trouble re-wearing is the burgundy skirt. Any suggestions are welcome…

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If you’re following along in the challenge, please link up your posts below!

Also linking up with Thursday Moda!

the balding shoes

Well, I learned something new this week: apparently shoes can go bald. My beloved leopard flats are showing their age these days, most notably by the fact that there are a few areas where the calfhair is missing. Not to worry though–I have a back-up pair that I bought with Amazon rewards points last spring. I know you were concerned.

I still managed to get one more wear out of them though. This outfit ended up being quite comfy for my day of manuscript writing, cross-campus treks, and grocery shopping. To be repeated, for sure!

chambray button-up: J.Crew, similar, similar // red skirt: Loft, similar, similar // leopard flats: Dr. Scholl’s, exact, similar // gold mesh strap watch: BP, similar, similar // black round sunglasses: Amazon, similar, similar