Friday, August 27, 2010

A perfect fall

It's a gorgeous sunshiny day, but like many of you, I'm already daydreaming about fall. Naturally, I took to Polyvore to design my dream cool-weather ensembles. Today's set includes the perfect dark floral dress (from Rebecca Taylor, no less), an Anthropologie cardigan (practically a fall staple in its own right), Miu Miu Mary Janes for a hint of Italian chic and, while we're at it, a Valentino bag... because, hey, if you're gonna dream, might as well dream big!
Who's that lady?

Who's that lady? by erincathleen featuring beret hat

I hope this fall's throwback to seventies, ladylike-chic is here to stay. I'm loving the return of some Victorian, romantic favorites, too: lace, ruffles, riding boots and structured handbags. A dark floral-patterned dress could easily go from summer to winter (with the right opaque tights), while a slouchy cardigan in a deep crimson is perfect for the crisp Autumn air. The same cardigan could easily pair with a leopard-print mini to create a fun play on proportion. And for the topper? The season's quintessential add-ons: ruffles and lace. Pair with Miu Miu's prim Oxford-Mary Jane pumps, and the look could go from apple picking to apple martinis in no time flat. An animal print scarf ties in all the colors, and would perk up any neutral ensemble, like a few brightly-colored leaves against a gray sky. This scarf, from Mulberry, is only vaguely leopard; I like the subtlety and warm tones. Layering a lace shrug or adding a cute crocheted cap? Totally cute options. To toughen up the look (but only slightly), swap the sweet pumps for studded or lace-up riding boots. And don't forget your must-have autumnal accessory: a sumptuous tote, in a fall-colored pattern or neutral hue, ideal for the lady who lunches and the one who runs the office.

So, it's still a little early, but... What excites you the most about fall?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

New series! Cute or Creepy?

Greetings on a rainy Tuesday in New England. I can't complain, 'cause this is the first real rain we've had all summer. While it's been nice to cool off, a few days of rain is about all I can stand. Since I've been stuck indoors, I probably won't be doing much outfit posting this week...

But I've decided to launch a new "series" of posts here on Ip & Audrey. For a while I was writing about my favorite things each season (and I seem to have abandoned that one! Whoopsies). Now I'm going to try to stick with a weekly "deep" thought. The topic is (drumroll, please)....

Cute or Creepy?

Each week, we're going to take a look at something in fashion or pop culture and decide whether we think it's cute, or just plain creepy. And I will leave it up to you, dear reader, to vote.

Today we're looking at Katy Perry's new album. Her sophomore disc, Teenage Dream, came out yesterday, and the case itself is cotton candy-scented. Katy also opted to appear naked on the cover, lounging on pink cotton candy clouds (naturally). Picking this CD up to give it an innocuous sniff? Um, awkward.

(This is not the actual cover art. Perhaps it should be?)

So! Is the scented cotton candy concept cute? Or does the naked cover propel it over to the creepy category?

Teenage Dream: Is it Cute or is it Creepy?

Cute! Katy may be nude, but it's done tastefully; she looks like a retro pinup. And who doesn't like pink cotton candy?

Creepy! The scented CD is fun and childlike, but pairing it with a nude pic? Not so innocent!

Creepy. free polls

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Hippie hippie shake

Confession: I've been one lazy girl. For months, I've been meaning to sort through my closet and redecorate my bedroom with some proper "spring" cleaning, but spring is long gone, summer is slipping away, and I've done close to nothing. My excuse? Starting a new full-time job in April. Truth: I just don't feel motivated. What's the point in keeping a tidy room when you only use it for sleep? Right? But I have been meaning to give my wardrobe a thorough evaluation and make room for my summer finds... out with the old, in with the new. As I fill up bags of garments to donate or consign, there are always those items that I'm on the fence about. This maxi skirt is one of them:

Ahhh. My hippie skirt. Supersoft cotton, crocheted detailing, a frou-frou tulle hem?!? This skirt has it all. It's the first thing I ever purchased from Urban Outfitters. It was priced something ridiculous, like in the $100 range, and I couldn't justify a three-digit price tag for such a whimsical piece. I mean, it's fun, but not exactly a long-term investment. Then I watched it drop to $75. Then $49.99. I think that's when I snapped it up, then cringed over the coming weeks as it went to $29.99, then $14.99... and, of course, my size was still in stock. I guess not everyone fell for it as hard as I did!

And five or six years later... we're still together. A summer fling that turned into lasting love, if you will. This skirt has been everywhere with me. It even served as a pretty awesome Halloween costume one year; I was "Halfway Cinderella," and my ballgown was on its way back to tatters. I thought this skirt, with its color, woho-chic style and, of course, tulle, had that very "riches to rags" peasant-princess look I was going for.

So the skirt might not have been the most pragmatic purchase ever, and it certainly doesn't go with everything in my wardrobe, but I just can't let go. In the summer, I live in maxi dresses and skirts. Not that trends matter so much, but I'm happy to see longer lengths come back into fashion. I heard a designer describe this fall's major look as "seventies-chic lady" (or, as Free People dubbed it, "seventies groupie") and I'd like to think that sums up my aesthetic. At least, for today. Or maybe it's just "Stevie Nicks decided to introduce pastels into her wardrobe for once." That could work, too.

And oh, yes, I wore this very outfit to the office (but added a cardigan for modesty and warmth!). Most people in my office wear jeans. I like to shake things up.

Behold, "Seventies Groupie"! I so can't wait to copy this Free People look in the fall:

How do you feel about the maxi-length's return? Was it long-awaited for you, or are you ready for it to just go away?

Monday, August 9, 2010

Emily & Erin Part Deux: Playtime in Plymouth


Emily posted some fun photos taken in Plymouth during her visit last week. I agree with her reflection, how sad it can feel to look back, a mere week later, and realize your shortlived vacation has ended... and it already feels like it happened long ago. For me, well, it's been a few years since I've taken a proper vacation (i.e. at least a week long), but when one works several part-time jobs, you never earn any personal days or paid time off. Now that I work full-time, I plan to remedy this by taking a week off next month to read, write and frolic... I can't wait!


But back to last weekend... Saturday was a wee bit hectic, since we daytripped up to Portland, Maine. Sunday was a little more laid back, and we took our annual Summer stroll around America's Hometown, Plymouth, MA. Plymouth might be smaller than Portland, but it's every bit as cute. And, as Emily pointed out, it's jam-packed with tourists! It's easy to blend right in with the crowd... and, that way, no one looks at you funny when you and your friend are taking goofy or pose-y photos!


Plymouth may get crowded at times, but it's definitely a picturesque town where one can find a little serenity. I'm a greedy little nature lover, and like getting to have my greenspace and ocean views all in one spot! Just give me some ponds, trees and sea... I'm one happy little hippie!
Even if I don't exactly dress like one... at least, not all the time.


This look reflects my typical daily style: easy dress, comfy (but cute!) footwear, biiiig bag (if it can't fit an Olsen twin, it's not big enough!), and some kind of floral adornment (like my giant necklace, here). Lately I fear I'm falling into a bit of a style rut, since this is what I wear nearly everday... and in the colder months, I just add tights, boots and a pea coat! Is it lazy or just plain efficient? A sartorial point to ponder...

Full disclosure: my workday "uniform" is even more boring: Embellished tank or tee with a cardigan, jeans, maybe pumps if I'm feeling energetic, and my huuuuge black bag from Aldo that goes with everything. I started out wearing dresses and skirts to work every day, but my office is just too freezing for that! So the jeans that used to hang, ignored, in the corner of my closet are now back in daily rotation. Yeah, good for them.


I thought Emily's Sunday outfit was really cute! And practical for roaming around town. Her style is so sweet and refreshing. She's like a walking Victorian tea set! I especially love the fun, rockabilly touch her minty green "Wayfarers" lend to an otherwise prim ensemble. Ok, so she's a Victorian hipster. Betcha never heard that one before. I dub it "Austen indie-chic."

As for me, I guess I'd call my look "polished bohemian." As in, a hippie who showers (sometimes). And puts on peep toes.

Well, I'm already looking forward to my next joint adventure with Miss Emily! Where, oh, where will we turn up next?

Summer's still got another month left! What are you dying to squeeze in before temps dip and leaves start to fall?

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Emily & Erin Part Une: Pret-a-Portland


Emily of Resplendent Tranquility and I had a smashing good time over the weekend. We spent Saturday rambling and roaming about Portland, Maine, searching for thrfited treasures, tasty treats, and some good old-fashioned American architecture to photograph and admire. Our mission was happily accomplished... Despite four-plus hours of lovely Boston-New Hampshire traffic. We passed the time blaring some old school cassettes from our nineties childhood (back when we first became friends, aw!)-- everything from Mariah Carey's Daydream and Ace of Base's The Sign (getting fellow travelers stuck on I-93 to dance and clap along made for quite the roadtrip party!) to a pretty hilarious acoustic demo of mine (ouch), even the soundtrack to Sailor Moon. That's right. We two Sailor Scouts enjoyed scouting a relaxing weekend in a nautical town... and were quite suited for it, I think...









Portland is certainly a quaint and beautiful city. I loved visiting but don't know if I could ever live there... it's a little too far north for my tastes (this weekend I was sooo cold in my little cotton dress!), and I like the size of and pace of life in Boston. NYC is my favorite, of course, but Boston is a close second in my heart.

You can view more photos like these on my Flickr account, if you are thus inclined. Stay tuned for Part Deux of our epic weekend adventures. There may or may not be a video! But I'll never tell...

Are you having fun adventures this summer?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Gratuitous Hair Shots!

hair today

Some of you have already seen my Flickr page, and therefore know that I went ahead and cut my hair. Ok, this isn't exactly newsworthy, but it counts as news in my little world: I got my bangs back! Truthfully, I loved 'em for about a week... now they're kind of a pain. They get a little fluffy and frizzy in the heat... My stylist warned me! But that's ok, I just pin them back when they annoy me; no biggie. At least it's nice to have options.

So here is a little "photoshoot" of my haircut, taken shortly after my salon visit. Doesn't your hair always look its best when you're fresh out of the salon? This is why I took a ridiculous number of photos-- I need a reminder of how good it looks on those days. It's always good to document your best hair days, I think... just like how we fashion bloggers document our favorite outfits!

by candlelight

translucent bangs!
My head is transparent!

Moving on... Our CSN Stores giveaway officially ended last night/this morning at midnight. I'll be reviewing your submissions and selecting a winner later on today. The winner will be notified via email. Thanks to those of you who entered! I've really enjoyed reading about your favorite fall ensembles; it actually makes me look forward to a little chill in the air... I can't wait for chunky sweaters and boots! It will be a welcome respite from all the humidity we've had lately, though I will miss the fun and freedom of summer.

Oh, and I've got some fun pictures to share from my weekend rendezvous with Emily! So stay tuned...