secondhand score: i see red (pear and valiant poppy)


This fall I want to refresh my wardrobe a little to bump up the level of dress – more dresses and polished blouses, skirts, and pants. Polished jeans outfits will always be my signature style, especially for work sessions in closets and shopping sessions, because I need to be able to move with ease. I’d also like to have more go-to outfits to be a little more dressed up.

I always, ALWAYS (except for undergarments) shop secondhand first. I have great results with consignment shopping, and my latest trip to Elite Repeat was particularly fabulous.

Remember Pantone’s colors for Fall 2018? Here’s a little reminder.


This season’s palette is gorgeous. Red Pear and Valiant Poppy are two colors that really suit my complexion and hair color, and I had what I call a secondhand score shopping session – I found several pieces I’ve been patiently seeking, and I LOVE them!

i see red, and a little quetzal green


I have wanted red oxfords for a long time. And I found unworn – meaning BRAND NEW – Cole Haan suede red wingtip oxfords. So comfortable, so stylish. I also found Quetzal Green – Pantone’s fancy name for teal – block-heel pumps. I’ll wear these with dresses and skirts, but also cropped raw-hem jeans, which instantly bumps up the level of dress and style of the outfit.

I’ve been looking for a longer (tea length), flowy red dress since I saw a gorgeous one on someone earlier this summer. This Red Pear geometric print one is perfect – it has a built-in tie at the waist, and sometimes I’ll put a structured belt right over that for more polish. A bonus is the other faux wrap-style dress, which combines fall colors and has flirty, but not too fussy, ruffles. I’ll wear this with my cowboy boots for fun and dress it up with booties or pumps.

The two blouses are perfect for wearing with jeans or dress pants. The contemporary bell sleeves on the solid one are just right for me – some bell sleeves render your hands practically useless with all the excess fabric, which is a total deal breaker for me. And I love the cutout embellishments. The dark floral is just what I was looking for to wear with dark-wash jeans – and the block-heel pumps! – and to pair with slim-leg ankle pants or a fitted skirt.

Happy Fall!

fall already?!

Say, WHAT? It’s back-to-school time! How did that happen? My daughter is starting high school this year (ulp – not ready…) and has already dived into volleyball every day – three weeks before school starts. So not ready.

The weather is still scorching, but here’s a little taste of fall to consider when getting your wardrobe set for the season change.

pantone’s colors for fall/winter 2018


Wearing “colors of the season” can help you feel contemporary and fresh, which leads to feeling confident and great about how you look. As you pull out your fall wardrobe or make choices for new (to you) pieces, look for these colors. Have fun pairing them together as well!

My favorites are Quetzal Green, Saragasso Sea, and Russet Orange. I like playing around with color pairings – all of the colors on the Fall palette work together, and pairing ones that you wouldn’t typically think of can create an edgy, stylish look.

Use prints to try colors you may not have worn before so they aren’t so overwhelming, and pay attention to what works for your complexion and hair color. Orange never used to be a color that worked for me, but since I let my hair go grey, it works, and I LOVE it! Almond Buff is a gorgeous neutral, but would make me look dead if I wore it by my face without a pop of color(s), like Nebulas Blue or Quetzal Green.

Have fun with color, and as I tell my clients, use white to add brightness and black to add contrast to an outfit. Be intentional with the colors you choose – dressing intentionally is the key to feeling fabulous!



8 trends for fall 2017

Many fall trends this year are classic styles, which not only are fabulous, but also will last longer than this season alone. Trends that have longevity are worth investing in, and because they are classic, you can easily find high quality pieces #secondhandfirst. Have some fun with these!

pantone’s palette for fall 2017

Wearing the colors of the season can help you feel contemporary. Mix these gorgeous colors in unexpected ways – Grenadine and Ballet Slipper or Butterum and Neutral Gray – for a more fashion-forward look.


red all over

Red is THE hot color for the season. Red shoes and boots, red handbags, red coats and jackets, head-to-toe red. Add anything red to your outfit, and you can’t go wrong!


classic plaids

Plaid pants, jackets, coats, shirts, skirts, and more. Tartan is the rage.

Photos: 1 and 2, 3

sumptuous velvet

Ankle boots, in particular. Statement coats, slim-leg pants, dresses, and collared shirts partial-tucked into jeans.


‘Americana’ throwbacks

Think western influenced styles – denim on denim, embroidery, patchwork, suede, cowboy boots, and shearling.


edgy black leather

Leather jackets, pants and skirts, and especially paired together – Matrix style.


winter florals

Floral prints continue from the Spring/Summer trends but in deep, rich jewel tones. Dark backgrounds with more negative space in the print on dresses, fluid blouses, and coats.


2 more holdovers

Black and white polka dots and classic trench coats carry over from Spring. Pair a black and white polka dot dress with a red trench for a stunning look.






5 trends for fall 2016

While I don’t advocate for wearing trends that don’t resonate with you, it is helpful to know what’s in to keep your wardrobe feeling contemporary and fresh. Simply adding a color of the season to your outfit or embracing a trend full-on both add intentionality to dressing, which looks great and feels great. Check out 5 trends that are hot this fall.

1. jewel tones and blushes

Rich jewel tones and neutral blushes are the colors of the season. There’s a broad array of exquisite colors – experiment with some you’ve never tried before and be adventurous with pairing them. If one appeals to you, but doesn’t suit your complexion, wear it away from your face.


Source: Pantone

2. Victorian/Edwardian-style blouses

Think high collars, ruffles, bow-tie necklines, and statement sleeves. Pair these blouses with jeans and loafers or dress them up tucked into a pencil skirt.

Sources: image 1, image 2, image 3


3. floral dresses

Floral print dresses have been making the rounds on runways and red carpets this season. There are plenty of ready-to-wear choices as well – pair them with booties, tall boots, or heels.

Sources: image 1, image 2, image 3, image 4

4. embroidered/embellished denim

Embroidered denim jeans and jackets are making a huge comeback, as are denim garments embellished with patches. This trend is an easy do-it-yourself way to make an old pair of jeans feel fresh.

Sources: image 1, images 2 and 3

5. loafers

Classic loafers, as well as heeled and open-heeled (mules), are a comfortable and polished shoe for casual and dress. Wear them with cropped jeans, dress pants, slim-fit ankle pants, and knee-length skirts or dresses. Timeless style!

Sources: image 1, image 2, image 3

Which trends will you embrace this fall?

3 outfits for transitioning to fall

The shift to fall clothing is always hard for me, and I can get a little irritable (my husband might say a lot…). The weather is still warm, but it’s September, school is in swing, and it doesn’t feel overly summery anymore. What to wear? It’s too hot for true fall clothing – fine-gauge sweaters, blazers, big scarves, booties and tall boots – but sundresses and shorts don’t feel right either.

Here are three outfit ideas to help ease the transition. Adapt them to your personal style using these basic guidelines.

shift from summer brights to neutrals and darker colors
wear cropped pants and jeans – cooler, but suggest fall
use lightweight silk scarves to add polish, but not warmth
replace sandals with close-toed shoes like flats, mules, and sneakers – still great for warm weather, but not too summery

Almost all of the clothing in these outfits is new-to-you. I’ve included where I purchased each item to give you a sense of the breadth of selection you can find when shopping consignment. Practicing sustainable consumerism rocks!

pair a summer dress with straight-leg jeans and flats


Dress: Second Début | Straight-leg Jeans: Turn Style | Flats: Elite Repeat

This darker summer dress works great as a tunic over straight-leg jeans, giving it a little more mileage before I put it away. This makes me happy, because it’s one of my favorites. I can even layer a lightweight long cardigan over it and switch out the flats with booties as the weather gets cooler.

add a classic silk scarf to a short-sleeve tee and culottes


Scarf: Second Début | Shirt: Turn Style  Culottes: Second Début | Mules: Elite Repeat | Belt: J Crew – US made

Neutrals work really well for fall transition. Add a pop of color with a silk or faux-silk scarf – they are lightweight and comfortable – and all the rage. For tying ideas, see this post. Open-heeled mules are on trend as well and add polish. My Cole Haan pair from Elite Repeat were a score – brand new and 85% off the retail price!

wear a lightweight jacket over a cami with cropped jeans


Scarf: Second Début | Jacket: Turn Style | Cami: Intimissimi | Cropped Jeans: Turn Style | Sneakers: ThredUP

For casual, pair fun sneakers with flared or wide-leg cropped jeans. Add a fitted lightweight jacket – over a cami to stay cool – and a neckerchief. I typically shop at local consignment stores to be able to try things on and to support our local economy. Occasionally, I buy through online consignment venues like thredUP if I can’t find something. I had been looking for a pair of classic Adidas sneakers for awhile and couldn’t pass them up when I found them!

your turn

What are some ways you manage the fall transition? Share your outfit ideas (and pics! 🙂 ) in the comments below.


trends for fall 2015

As the weather becomes crisp and the idea of layering and cozying up in sweaters becomes appealing, it’s time to take stock of your wardrobe to shift into fall. While retailers would like you to purchase a whole new fall wardrobe, there are likely many items you already own that can be paired in new ways to create outfits that feel new and contemporary.

Adding “on trend” accessories, shoes, and colors can help outfits feel fresh in an economically and environmentally sustainable way. And many accessories or statement pieces can be found new-to-you.

Fashion designer Caroline Herrera’s statement, “Fashion has always been a repetition of ideas, but what makes it new is the way you put it together,” is one of my favorites (here and here). I keep coming back to it because it is so. very. true.

what goes around comes around

When you follow fashion trends, you see things come around again and again. Style tweaks or different pairings make them contemporary for the time. Take jumpsuits: very on trend right now, as they were in the 70s and again in the 90s.

trends for fall 2015: jumpsuits across the decades

Jumpsuits – 1970s denim, 1990s floral, contemporary denim : Photos – Pinterest: terrebella*moda; Etsy: Twitch Vintage; Young at Style

The contemporary jumpsuit on the right is full body denim on denim, a trend that is still going strong. I love the trend, but the jumpsuit gives me pause. Perhaps it’s because I rocked both the 70s (good times grade-school fashion) and the 90s versions (remember, Amy?? I know you do), and three times around is just one too many. But that’s just me – if you love the jumpsuit look, go for it! And if you have one from the 70s hanging around in your closet, you’re golden – the contemporary versions are channeling that vintage look.

The same goes for culottes and flared jeans: both big in the 70s, flares again in the 2000s, and both big again now. Denim flared culottes are the ultimate mash-up. Wear culottes with a heeled ankle boot, ankle-strap pump, or loafer and flares with wedges or heels to highlight the cut.

trends for fall 2015: flares and culottes

Denim on denim flares, camel culottes, flared denim culottes : Photos – Style is my Pudding; Mango; Anthropologie

fall colors

Burnt orange, oxblood (a very dark burgundy), olive and navy paired together, and neutrals are hot colors this fall. A scarf, handbag or shoes in one of these rich, saturated colors can bring an updated look to a classic outfit, or a single statement piece highlights the trend.

trends for fall 2015: fall colors

Fall colors – neutrals, burnt orange, olive and navy, oxblood and camel : Photos – Memorandum; Always Becoming; Pinterest: Mamabee; Catherine Nicole

Neutrals like winter white, taupe, camel, grey, and oatmeal can be paired with any of the bolder colors or worn on their own in a soft mélange of knits and other fluid fabrics. Be careful to complement skin tone and hair color when wearing neutrals, as they can wash out your complexion if not the right mix for your coloring. Gingham (another classic that’s come back around) continues from spring and summer; navy, oxblood, or black gingham pair well with olive and camel for fall.



Tassels on necklaces, handbags, and shoes. Rope belts (with tassels too). Blanket scarves, silk scarves, and bandanas. Surprisingly, brooches. All are hot accessories this season. Again, many of these are retro – pull out your mother’s vintage silk scarf or brooch to change up the look of an outfit. Tie a scarf or bandana in a classic knot around the neck or wrist or wear a large silk scarf rolled and draped from the neck loose and long. And the stylish Panama hat of summer has morphed into the wide-brimmed fedora for cooler weather.

trends for fall 2015: accessories


trends for fall 2015: scarves

Bandana, classic silk scarf, burnt orange blanket scarf : Photos – WhoWhatWear; Pinterest: Style Spy; Still Being Molly


Ankle-strap pumps, sandals, and flats, ankle boots with a slightly taller shaft, and classic loafers and brogues (aka oxfords) are all over the style blogs right now. Ankle straps that buckle or tie (tassels show up here as well) add a lovely embellishment to classic styles. Ankle boots with a slightly taller shaft and chunkier low or mid-heels appear in classic colors and in fashion-forward prints. Loafers and lace-up brogues in non-traditional colors riff on menswear for a sleek, sophisticated look.

trends for fall 2015: shoes


There is a lot of room for expressing your own personal style with this season’s trends. You can go for a classic, clean-lined tailored look, a retro look – both mod-60s or retro-70s, or a softer look with neutrals combined with black or white. And don’t be afraid to mix it up a little and try a color or pairing you haven’t before or even embrace a trend full-on – vintage and new-to-you finds are the perfect way to be bold with styles you’ve never tried or want to wear a second (or third) time around. Maybe I will too.

Yeah. I rocked it.

Yeah. I rocked the jumpsuit.