Outfit Post: 10/24/12 (and Halloween Festivities)

Blazer: Target — Skirt: Goodwill (Yili Ren) — Camisole: Thrifted — Tights: Goodwill (Target) — Boots: WomanWithin — Ring: Nervous System — Earrings: Hand-me-down — Necklace: NoMoreRack

Happy Halloween, everybody! (Or Happy Regular Wednesday to anybody who doesn’t celebrate–Regular Wednesday candy for all!)

If you’re going by my outfit from a week ago, my costume was A Slightly-Trendier-Than-Usual Blogger, and I did in fact try to model this outfit after all those fall-ish all-neutral ensembles that seem to be constantly circulating around Pinterest.

All I really needed to complete the illusion was to be texting someone on my cell phone, or possibly wearing a fake Blogger Bun.

Here’s my actual (daytime) Halloween costume, for the record–our office is doing a group costume of Gnomes and Mushrooms, and I picked Gnome. (Don’t ask me, I wasn’t consulted regarding theme.) I’m planning on changing into a secondary costume when I get home, but you’ll have to wait till tomorrow to see pictures of that, because I do not yet have the power of time travel. Yet.

We’re also doing a lunchtime potluck, and I decided to try out this nice seasonal-sounding radish and apple salad. It’s pretty, so I hope it tastes good! I’m a little trepidatious about how well the tarragon flavor will go over with the crowd, but I’m also well known for my performance anxiety in social cooking situations, so I’m trying to ignore it.

To further get into the Halloween spirit (ba-dum-chh) I decided to participate in Eleanor from The Magic Square Foundation‘s Halloween Pinterest Challenge, whereupon participants take one or more Halloweeny pins and try to recreate them and decide if the pin is a trick (a.k.a. dumb bullshit pin that nobody should ever attempt) or a treat (a.k.a. dumb bullshit pin that’s fun anyway!).

I first set my sights on this, one of several pins showcasing oranges carved like jack-o-lanterns. Since I neglected to buy a pumpkin this year, I figured it might be an entertaining change of pace.

The result? A tricky treat–it turns out that it’s really hard to scoop orange pulp out of a top hole without tearing the orange to shreds. I mean, with pumpkins the shell is pretty sturdy, but with citrus you have to have a somewhat gentle hand even with a thick-rinded navel orange. There’s still some goo stuck to the bottom that I wasn’t able to scrape up, but at least I got most of it, and I stuck him in the fridge afterward so that he’d last until tonight.

I am extremely pleased with his face. So much pathos and anguish.

My secondary pin was this papercraft skull from Skull A Day. I figured, you print out the PDF and follow the instructions, how hard can it be?

Man, if only I knew. I have way more respect now for people who make, like, little 3-D papercraft replicas of Stuttgart or whatever, because I had some difficulties with this little fucker. Maybe I’m overstating it a little, since I’m already coming to the table as a left-hander using right-handed scissors  and as someone who has difficulty with spatial conception, so maybe y’all would have an easier time. I think my true downfall was the supposed “articulated jaw,” which requires some internal mechanics which were nearly beyond my abilities, and as it is, the jaw just kind of hangs jauntily to the side, like the skull just got punched or told a cheesy joke. I should put a little stogie in there. I like her, though, she’s got moxie.

So, again, a tricky treat, and I very well may leave her on my work monitor for the rest of the year, if not indefinitely. She brightens up the place.

The Magic Square Foundation

Outfit Post: 10/31/12




Did I scare you? No? Ok. Well maybe owls aren’t really the scariest Halloween creature. But hey, at least I have a costume this year, and one that can easily be worn to school. I made it all by myself!  The hood is made from another t-shirt, and all of the embellishments are felt. I also made Braden a dino hoodie, but I don’t have a good picture of that yet.


My favorite part is just how weird the hood looks upside down. Basically I become that owl who has flipped its head!

Are you dressing up for Halloween? If not this year, what was your favorite costume as a child?

Outfit Post: 10/23/12

Dress and owl pin: Blacklist Vintage — Belt and boots: Thrifted — Tights: Spanx — Ring and earrings: Target

Ahh, this dress, how I’ve been waiting to wear this dress!

I found it on my vintage run during my trip to Minneapolis back in August, and since then I’ve just been sitting on my hands, waiting for the weather to be cold enough to bust it out. According to the tag, it’s from the 1950s, and is basically the cutest semi-sheer long-sleeved brown shirtdress I could ever hope to own. (Does it count as a shirtdress? I can’t remember if it’s supposed to have buttons all the way down or what in order to qualify–correct me in the comments if you know.)

Between yesterday and today, it’s beginning to feel a little bit like Dressopotamia around here, albeit without any of the wacky prints or 60s/70s silhouettes one tends to associate with Dressopotamia. But hey, dresses!

Speaking of yesterday, you may have noticed that I employed a similar color scheme for both Monday and Tuesday of last week. It was pretty much coincidental at first, but when I noticed the similarities, I decided to go ahead and declare it Neutrals Week over here at Mia’s little half of Reading in Skirts! I figured it would be a good challenge, since I find all-neutrals outfits more difficult than loud and colorful ones.

Of course, I still needed a few blips of color in the form of a chunky ring, some gigantor earrings, and Eulalie the owl pin, who you may remember from our last Tia and Mia Take a Look and Do It Together challenge.

When I asked him after getting dressed in the morning, Mike was of the opinion that my outfit was a little too on-the-nose and looked costumey, which may be true with the dark tights and ankle boots. How would you style this dress to bring some more modern elements in?

Tuesday’s Reading Recs

Hey all!

I hope you’re all safe. Braden and I got back to Chicago before Hurricane Sandy shut down flights from Florida, thank goodness. I haven’t had too much of a chance to do outfit pictures though, so instead, some reading recommendations!

This map tells you why it was so hard for me to get to work this morning – southbound winds of around 25mph while I was heading northbound. This map is from here, and it uses national weather data to graph wind patterns. This is a really neat show of the sort of work we’re doing in my Informational Aesthetics class, even if no one from my class did it. XD

This article about how the author came to understand the lie of the Pro-Life Movement blew me away this morning. It reminded me of the humanity of believers, but also of how hard the Movement has been working against its own stated goals. The notion that Obamacare, by providing free contraception, is going to reduce abortions in America by 75% was both shocking and understandable.

On the flip side, this article about the personal decision of the author to abort a child that would have lived a life of incredible pain out of love for that child reminds us that not all aborted children are unwanted. Some are deeply desired and cared for, and that empathy for a fetus does not always mean bearing that fetus to term.

Honestly, both of those articles are so heavy, I think two reading recommendations are enough for today. 🙂


Outfit Post: 10/22/12

Dress: Gift — Camisole: Old Navy — Crochet tights: Sock Dreams — Boots: WomanWithin — Necklace: Gift — Earrings: Vendor on campus — Bracelet: ABC Store

Hello and happy Monday to everybody! I hope y’all on the East Coast (and anybody else who’s being affected by Hurricane Sandy) are able to keep safe, warm, and dry. That, or come to California, where all we have to worry about is the occasional earthquake!

Some years back I had an online friend who lived in Texas. She wanted to move to California to further her career, but was scared enough of earthquakes that it was holding her back. To that I say: hurricanes are way scarier than earthquakes!

And besides the occasional gigantic world-ending earthquake we get here once in a while, don’t hurricanes happen way more frequently and cause more damage? (Not to, you know, borrow trouble for those of you currently in the throes of one. I’m truly wishing the best for all of you! Anybody who’s lived through a natural disaster or weather catastrophe has all my respect.)

Maybe it’s just a matter of fear of the unknown. And I personally haven’t experienced a major earthquake in my lifetime–just a very few bookcase-swaying floor-shakers–so maybe if I’d lived through one I’d be singing a different tune.

Things I Did Not Buy 10/26/12: Bones Edition

Oh man, y’all, can you even believe Halloween is next week? I am ~jazzed~. And, you know, to get in the spirit of things a lot of blogs and websites are doing Halloween-themed posts, and who am I to refuse the call? Thus, here are some possibly-spooky, possibly-bony accessories that I’ve been resisting the call of recently.

(Just click on the picture to be led to the original source. OooooOOooooooh, spooky use of technology! Or something.)

Skulls have been super-stylish recently, thanks in part to Alexander McQueen, and also the natural macabre proclivities of the fashion-forward. They’re not usually my speed, but there’s something about the expression of these little skull studs that I find undeniably charming. I hear ya, fellahs. I hear ya.

Possibly the classiest choice of the bunch, I was tipped off about this cool silver linked bone bracelet by a friend’s Tumblr. (No, I don’t have a Tumblr account yet. Yes, I still follow other people’s anyway. Leave me alone.) I dunno about you, but I’d wear this any time of year.

If you’re interested in something a little cuter, how about these little plastic sparrow-skull earrings? They even glow in the dark, you guys! They even glow in. The. Dark. Why are you still here?!

If you happened to be admiring my new Erica Weiner hummingbird skull necklace last week, but birds aren’t really up your alley, how about an Erica Weiner bat-jaw necklace? It’s a little eerie but not immediately recognizable, which gives the wearer an air of mystery.* I can vouch that my necklace is of gorgeous quality and would get another piece of jewelry from them in a heartbeat–yes, even a bat-jaw necklace. (Are you kidding? Especially a bat-jaw necklace.)

*Air of mystery not guaranteed in the states of Michigan, Florida, or Rhode Island. 

For something a little more obviously Halloweeny, leg bone OTK socks are fun and would also look smashing with a red dress and a wide black belt. Wear with tall boots for a little peek of patella, or with heels or flats for the full tibia-and-fibula experience. (Is that weird? That sounds weird. I think it’s pretty obvious why I’ve never been hired to write advertising copy.)

If you’re not done reading about creepy/crawly/otherwise eerie accessories, go check out this week’s extremely horrific edition of Estate Jewelry on The Hairpin! Not gonna lie: I want that scorpion necklace so bad it hurts.

Are y’all excited for Halloween too? Are you hosting/attending a party this weekend? Do you have children to take out trick-or-treating? Do you have any good Halloween stories from years past? I’ll share one of my own: when I was in probably 4th grade, I decided to dress up as Wishbone the dog–not only that, but I was determined to be Wishbone who was himself dressed up as a jester. So meta, so ahead of my time. Thank you, Mom, for humoring me.

Outfit Post: 10/25/12


Guys. THIS. OUTFIT. Do not ask me why I love it so much, but I do. Maybe it’s the awesome skirt from Gracey that matches my shoes perfectly?

SAILBOATS. It’s such an adorable pattern. The length is a bit touchy: I had to wear my shorter-under-skirt-shorts rather than my preferred ones, but I’m digging it. I’ll have to try wearing it with tights when it gets a bit cooler again for sure.

I also want to point out that a year ago, putting together a pattern with a bright that wasn’t in that pattern would’ve weirded me out. And a skirt with tennies. But this outfit is helping me feel like I am werkin’ it, so thank goodness for personal fashion blogging y’all.

I feel like I’m forgetting to mention something. Something…important.


Oh right. I got a haircut. 😉 I have not yet figured out how I feel about it. It’s out of my face, which was the big motivation for finally going in, but I had sort of hoped for something even more asymmetrical. But it’ll grow on me (Hahahaha, get it? Cause it is. Growing on me. Literally.)





Outfit Post: 10/21/12

Top: Marty May — Jeans: Nordstrom Rack — Flats: Thrifted (Born) — Belt: Thrifted — Earrings: The Wood Merchant — Necklaces: Hand-me-down, thrifted, and Etsy

See that dust on my shoes? That is bona fide CORN DUST.

Okay, well, maybe not, but I did get it all over myself at the Dell’Osso Family Farm in Lathrop. Last Sunday Tia’s family (minus Tia) invited Mike and me to meet them at the Central Valley’s hoppin’-est corn maze for pumpkin blasting and good times, and we were only too happy to oblige. That place is going to become a legit theme park some day–it seems to get bigger every year, and there were families and children covering every square foot. There was even a depressed-looking dog dressed like a bumblebee.

All in all, it was definitely a three-necklace affair. (You guys should have seen how confused and distressed Michael was when I was getting ready: “Why are you putting another necklace on?! You’re already wearing two!!”)

It was a grand old time; we shot miniature pumpkins out of air cannons, ate delicious pie, and watched Mike almost break his neck on the dubious “Bucking Pumpkin” attraction. I took video, but I think Mike would rather spend a month in an ancient Roman garum factory than allow that footage to be released into the wilds of the internet. Ah, well, just imagine it with me.

Outfit Post: 10/24/12


One thing I miss about earlier this year is having a backlog of outfit pictures and posts. Ever since I took my big month off, I’ve had a horrible time remembering to get pictures and trying to get ahead of myself. However, not having a backlog means I’m definitely talking off the cuff about the day before.


Yesterday it was definitely t-shirt weather, after a few weeks of absolutely needing at least a hoodie, if not a proper coat. I wanted to wear these teals tights, because yay, tights! From the tights, I decided I wanted to wear this shirt, since the teals match pretty close. I always struggle with this shirt…it’s just a touch too loose for my personal taste, but belting it disrupts the pattern that made me take it home.


So I tried a partial tuck. I’m not sure I loved it, but it helped me feel more put together in any case.


I’m going out of town this weekend for a wedding so I will yet again fail to build up a backlog. Do y’all operate off of backlogs of images (like Mia!) or are you putting your posts up almost the same day you take the pictures(like my sorry butt)?

Outfit Post: 10/20/12

Tank top: Goodwill — Shorts: Nordstrom Rack — Sandals: Goodwill (Aerosole) — Necklace: Gift from Katie! — Bangle: World Market

Saturday may have been the last day of shorts-appropriate weather here in California, and I took full advantage of the situation to bust out the shortiest shorts I’ve got. (Man, with all that bare leg plus the wedges, don’t I look mad tall? It also helps that I had the camera a little too close and kept cutting off the top of my head. That’s a little-known photography secret for tallness that I’ll let y’all have for free ‘cuz I’m just so generous.)

I don’t know how the rest of the world will survive without seeing my thighs again for four or five months.

Then again, maybe I’ll layer them up with some tights and continue to wear them through winter. They’re just too comfortable to forego entirely.

In any case, this necklace is fully year-round material, and I’m looking forward to styling it with some of my chunky sweaters. C’monnnn, sweater weather!

Do you have any warm-weather clothing that you plan to adapt for the colder months?