Monthly Archives: May 2012

100 posts – things we’ve learned and loved

First off, can we just all agree that Brad Pitt is not hot anymore:

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I mean, that just wreaks of middle-aged man past his prime still trying too hard to look hip and cool. So, so sad Brad. But since this is a fashion blog, I guess I should also comment on what he’s wearing. I actually like this gray suit paired with the white v-neck tee. Very French-chic (which is appropriate because this was taken at the Cannes film festival). What I do NOT like is that white belt. I am firmly anti-white belts on men. And on women for that matter. A nice cognac-colored belt would look much more sophisticated and not like he swiped it from his oldest son’s closet.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way… as you can probably guess by the title of this post, I am officially 100 posts into this little bloggy adventure of mine.* So I thought now would be a good time to look back and reflect on some of the things I’ve learned and loved both about myself and about you kids over these past several months.

*I’ll confess I was v sad to realize – after the fact, obvs – that my actual 100th post featured a picture of Britney Spears at her near-lowest. So to make up for it, here’s a picture of Ryan Gosling at his smoking-hottest. You’re welcome.

Thing I’ve Learned No. 1You kids agree much more often than I expected you would. There have been 6 unanimous loves, including my very first post about this shoe:

And apparently you guys weren’t alone because this shoe sold out before I could buy a pair for myself. I think of them often and weep for what will never be.

Also, surprisingly, there has only been one unanimous “no” vote – on this skirt:

And to that I say well done.

I was convinced this post would elicit a second unanimous “no” vote, but two of you actually like this swimsuit:

I demand that you identify and explain yourselves immediately.

Thing I’ve Learned No. 2 – People are really passionate about clothes with animals on them. This post about the Charlotte Taylor camel dress has gotten the most comments of all of my posts so far. Including this comment which is ostensibly from the designer herself:

Charlotte Taylor
October 21st, 2011 at 9:17 amedit

Hi Shea, thank you for your honest post on one of our dresses from the CHARLOTTE by CHARLOTTE TAYLOR collection for Anthropologie. I am sorry that you do not appreciate the irony and quirky, clash factor of the Camel Print dress – I do not think that a collection can ever appeal to everyone and I fear that you will never become a CT customer, much to my disappointment. Good luck with your blog.
All the best, Charlotte Taylor

And even though the original post is from way back in October, I still get comments on it fairly regularly. Including this one from earlier this week:

anthrolover
May 23rd, 2012 at 10:05 pmedit

you’ll never know until you try it. i never saw it on the website, i saw it in the catalogue and LOVED it on the model. tried it in the store and just had to have it. i’ve gained over 20 lbs and the dress hides them! i don’t know how, i don’t even need spanx. it was gorgeous then, it is still gorgeous and ironic. can be styled many different ways but you must be creative. i’m actually glad anthropologie failed to photograph it well on their website, that’s how a $228 dress became affordable at 50% for everyone who was willing to take a risk.

And while I’m not really sure why she felt the need to confess her 20-lb weight gain, I really do appreciate her and everyone else taking the time to share their opinions about a BRIGHT ORANGE DRESS WITH PINK CAMELS ON IT.

Thing I’ve Learned No.3 – Having a blog that requires you to spend large amounts of time looking at clothes and shoes is bad for your wallet. I’ve purchased quite a few things that I’ve featured on the website. Like this skirt:

Which was so gorge but I ended up returning because it turns out I was justified in my concern that my non-defined waist would ever fit into that shape. And this dress which also got returned because it did, indeed, look like baby poo. But I have been more successful with some of my other purchases featured on the blog. Like this tunic:

Paired with black leggings, knee-high boots, an open, swingy plum-colored cardi and a fun pendant necklace, this tunic became a staple of my Fall/Winter 2011 wardrobe. But I think my favorite item from the blog that I ended up purchasing was this coat:

Now I didn’t get the yellow one because I could never pull the trigger on spending $258 for a yellow peacoat, and by the time they went on sale they were out of my size in the yellow. (Of course) But while doing some pre-Spring shopping sometime in February, I came across one last peacoat in my local J Crew in this gorge purple color:

Between an end of season markdown and an additional 30% off sale that weekend, this coat was priced at $96, and there was literally one left…. and it was in MY SIZE. Huzzah!! Needless to say it came home with me immediately. Lesson learned: good coats come to those who wait.

Thing I’ve Learned No. 4 – I really do love to win. And I am happy to report I am still winning this war.

And now for the most important thing Thing I’ve Learned since I started this blog: how much I appreciate and LOVE each and every one of you kids who takes the time to read, comment and vote. Without y’all this would just be “Things Shea Loves and/or Hates and Writes About but No One Ever Reads” so thanks for keeping that from being a reality. Here’s to 100 more posts full of fashion and judgement. Happy Memorial Day Weekend, kids!!!


Joe’s Jeans Cut Off Short with Exposed Pockets – do we love it?

So apparently this is a thing now:

Joe’s Jeans Cut Off Shorts with Exposed Pockets – $135

Like a thing that people are paying a lot of money to do on purpose and not just a thing that Britney Spears does when her thighs are on fire but her feet are apparently freezing:

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I do not understand this thing. And I’m pretty sure I don’t care how cute the fabric for the pockets is (and credit, credit to Joe’s for at least picking a cute fabric to dangle out of their daisy dukes), I should not be able to see it. Because I think pockets should always be hidden inside of your shorts, and not hanging down like some kind of deranged saddle bags.

But maybe that’s just me.


Neon pleated skirt – how to love it

Happy, happy Monday kids!*

*My grandmother has a theory that you can “speak things into being” so that’s what I’m going for here.

And what do we do on happy, happy Mondays when we can’t get motivated to do any real work? That’s right – we turn to Pinterest. And what did our old friend have in store for us today? This:

Image from Cupcakes and Cashmere – great blog. Go check it out.

But this is not our usual Pinterst re-do. This is a Pinterest adore-a-thon. Because this outfit is SO FAB. I love everything about this  – the black moto-jacket, the tiny bow belt, the sparkly clutch, and most importantly, I love that skirt. Love. It. So I gave myself the challenge (and we all know how much I love a good challenge) of finding a few more ways to possibly incorporate a neon pleated skirt into my own wardrobe.

Here’s what I came up with for work:

Neon skirt for work

Now obvs this isn’t the same neon skirt our adorable blogger is wearing above. But I thought a longer version might be more versatile, especially if I wanted to be able to wear it to the office. Would I wear a neon yellow skirt to court? Probably not. But I think pairing this bright skirt with more neutral-colored pieces makes it totally appropriate for a day spent in mediation or taking depositions. You could even lose the blazer, add some showier earrings and maybe a few bangle bracelets and wear this outfit to a fun summer wedding.

But I wouldn’t want to confine my neon skirt to the work week, so here’s what I came up with for play:

Neon pleated skirt cazh

I love the idea of royal blue paired with this neon yellow. For some reason it just makes my heart smile. But because that’s a lot of bright color in one outfit, I kept the belt and sandals neutral and added the striped bag for one fun pop of pattern that doesn’t compete with the rest of the outfit.

And now here’s where I tell you that while you’ll probably see me add lots of  cute, straw fedoras (like the one above) to my theoretical online looks this summer, you will probably never actually see one on my head. That’s because try as I might – and I’m pretty sure I’ve tried on every fedora in the state of Tennessee and quite a few in Alabama and Florida, as well – I just can’t seem to get one to look right on my giant noggin. Sad.

I’m definitely in love with the idea of a neon pleated skirt for summer. How about you?


This woman could have used our help – a crime of fashion

The date: Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The place: The Putnam County Justice Center in Cookeville, TN

The crime:

The description: That, kids, is a mini-backpack of the Vera Bradley variety. Neither of those are things that I particularly enjoy. I especially do not enjoy them when they are brought into a courtroom.

As a purse.

By a female attorney who I’m going to guess is in her mid-forties.*

*This is not to say I would enjoy it being brought into the courtroom by a female attorney of any age. Unless that age was 5 and then I would be way too busy being astonished by the Doogie-Howser-esque child prodigy in my midst to be concerned about her handbag choice.

Now I have a firm rule that if I am in a courtroom and in front of a judge, I am wearing a blazer. I’m not always wearing a matching suit (because I hate them), but I am always wearing an appropriate jacket with a skirt, pants or dress of some sort. The female attorneys of Putnam County, Tennessee have no such rule. In fact, the first time I made an appearance there I saw a female attorney wearing a turtleneck sweater with a mini-skirt and knee boots – and no one asked her to go home and change. I was floored.

The attorney carrying the offending backpack above was wearing an outfit virtually identical to this one:

(Head chopped off to protect the innocent blogger from whom I stole this photo who probably doesn’t want to be used as an example of bad fashion on a judgmental stranger’s website.)

There’s nothing inherently wrong with this outfit. There’s nothing particularly great about it, but there’s nothing super-terrible about it either. The difference is that this nice lady is not wearing her cardigan and casual black pants while she is representing clients for pay in front of an elected judicial official. And therein lies my point.

The lesson: Bright orange mini-backpacks are not for grown-ups. Actually let’s make that mini-backpacks of any type, shape, material and/or color are not for grown-ups. And they are certainly not for use in a professional setting. Of any kind. Ever. If it’s quilted and printed, save it for the weekends, kids.


Non-hideous yellow dresses – do we love them?

Wish I could say “Happy Friday” to all of you, but today is not a happy day for me. Instead it’s a day of mourning  – because today is my last day working with my co-d friend and work spouse Emily. She had the nerve to accept a new job at an office that is TWO WHOLE BLOCKS AWAY so clearly I will never see her again.

You know what would make me feel better? Tequila. But since that’s not an option right now, you can all make me feel better by going to my last post and voting for my side to make sure I keep winning. Because I love winning.

Also, as an addendum to my last post I should note that Emily actually sent me that Pucci dress in an e-mail, telling me she loves it, and asking me to find her a more affordable option. Well try as I might I couldn’t find anything exactly on point. But I did find some more affordable options in the “yellow dress with interesting details” category. Let’s take a look:

Trina Turk Rosemarie Pebble Beach Textured Dress – $298

I do love a good sheath dress. But do I love a good sheath dress with a keyhole and a bow? I actually think just the keyhole would be okay, but the giant bow pushes this dress dangerously close to clown costume territory. So here’s a dress that eliminates that problem:

Banana Republic Chartreuse Jacquard Dress – $140

Dear models, Please stop putting your hands in the pockets of these dresses. It makes your hips look wide. And if your tiny size zero hips look wide, it makes me think my normal-sized hips will look positively gigantic leading me not to purchase the dress thus defeating your entire purpose in this world. Boom – lawyered. Love, Shea

Notwithstanding the model’s unfortunate posing, I do like this simple yellow sheath with the “interesting” detail of the jacquard pattern. And yes, I recognize that calling the jacquard an “interesting” detail is a bit of a stretch but I wanted to include this dress because I like it. And it’s my blog so I can do what I want. (Insert me sticking my tongue out here)

This dress actually DOES have some interesting details:

Traipsing Through the Tulips Dress – $70

While not an exact replica, I feel like this one is at least similar in spirit to the Pucci dress. It has lacy details and an embroidered neckline, but it’s also missing those hideous sleeves – which is a good thing. It also, however, reads as a little young – which is a bad thing. So here’s a yellow lace dress that is probably more age-appropriate for most of us:

Nanette Lepore “Vamos” Floral Eyelet Dress – $348

I think this is super-cute. And if I looked good in bright yellow I would own this dress because I love it. But I do not look good in bright yellow so one of you who does will just have to buy and wear it so I can live vicariously through you. Speaking of bright yellow:

Catherine Malandrino - $345

I can’t decide if this one is cute, or if it looks like a highlighter. I’m pretty sure it can’t be both. What I do like about this dress is the crochet-detail emphasizing the natural waist. What I’m not so sure about (in addition to the super-bright shade of yellow) is the crochet band around the thighs. No woman wants to emphasize those.

And finally, I really, really like this one:

Collective Concepts Emily Colorblock Dress – $89

This one is probably my v. fave of all the yellow dresses. Imagine how cute this would be with a wide tan belt and some fun platform espadrilles. Unfortunately, this one is also the v. hardest shade of yellow for anyone to pull off. I think it’s no coincidence the model’s head is chopped off on this one because this shade of lemon yellow has a tendency to make both blondes and brunettes alike look like they are dying from consumption.

So that’s what I think about yellow dresses – how about you? (And yes, you can only vote for one of them so you’ll have to pick your fave.)


Emilio Pucci Appliqued Silk-Charmeuse Dress – do we love it?

Alright kids – it’s time to talk about my friend Emily again. Emily and I are pretty much the same person. Except she has brown hair and mine is blonde. That’s just about the only difference. Seriously.

So I was EXTREMELY surprised to receive an e-mail from Emily today expressing her love for this dress:

Emilio Pucci Appliqued Silk-Charmeuse Dress – $6,000

Emily’s love for this dress was surprising because this same dress causes me to have a violent physical reaction deep within my fashion-loving little heart. This dress more than hurts my eyes – it hurts my feelings. Like I am deeply troubled to know I live in a world where this dress not only exists, it exists with a price of $6,000.*

*I’m sure many, many Belgian nuns hand-sewed every stitch on this dress with such precision they ultimately went blind from all of the tiny, detail work.

In Emily’s defense, she did say she was “not in love with” the sleeves.  I, on the other hand, would prefer to light everything from the waist-up on fire and start over. Okay, that’s probably a bit of an exaggeration. I could maybe see this possibly working if you cut off the sleeves just below that band on the upper arm and open up the neckline somehow with a little crew or scoop neck. Maybe.

Whose side are you on?*

*And please, do not let the fact that I am the author of this blog who has brought you many, many helpful fashion tips and hopefully a few laughs over these past many months, sway your decision in any way**

**Also, you all look super-skinny in that outfit you’re wearing today.***

***But no pressure.


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