Thursday, April 23, 2015

This decision is important

Last month, my husband and I went to our usual optometrist for our yearly eye appointment. My prescription has changed a tad, but I don't have insurance for new frames. I was looking at some frames (Prada and Persol), one of which was my husband's favorite (the Pradas), and one that I liked, although so similar to my current green Ray-Bans. Since I was eaten up by indecision AND I didn't have insurance for new frames, I let it go.

Fast forward a few weeks and I am consumed by covetousness for new glasses. The issue is that I love my current Ray-Bans and I honestly thought that they would be my glasses for life, but the truth is that I like a little change every once in a while. And I wanted to go back to a thick frame (I think it's more flattering on me) and I wanted to play with a light tortoiseshell look. Well, I spent all of last weekend researching frames online and I finally - as I told y'all - decided to go for a free trial from Warby Parker to see if the ones that I liked online would translate into a good look on my face. The worst that could happen, I figured, is that I wouldn't like them and I wouldn't have spent any money on that decision. No big deal either way, especially considering that I still am quite fond of my current frames.

So I chose all tortoiseshell frames (most light, but one dark, as they didn't have any other option) and they all arrived yesterday, which I found out right after writing my last post. Tremblingly, I tried them on and...

... Crap. I liked them all. Man, I really must be jonesin' for a change. But the pair that I was most in love with, well, it went well. And I think that something is in the cards. But let me show you, because, yay! Pictures!

So before we start, here's the baseline: me in my current specs, hair not done in any special way, soon after coming home from work/bike ride/daycare pickup. Enjoy:


So first up, the Preston frames in gimlet tortoise. Now I actually tried these on two years ago, when Warby Parker kindly sent me some frames to play with and talk about (first pair). I liked them then and I liked them now. Here's how I look now in them:

... Fun, right? Although they're smaller than what I tend to like on me, I was pleasantly surprised at how much I did like them on. My husband was "eh" on them. 

So then I tried on the Durands in woodland tortoise, which looked promising online. They certainly delivered, with a deeper lens, but a thinner overall frame:

I call this pose "douchey scholar"

Yay, am I right? I liked these. Nothing hugely special, but definitely workable in a pinch and I wouldn't mind wearing these babies for a while. I was pretty happy with these.

The next pair is actually quite similar, the Haskell in burnt lemon tortoise, but there's something about them that I liked even more:

... I don't know. Slightly bigger? Slightly more pronounced shape? When I tried them on in front of the mirror yesterday, I definitely exclaimed aloud over them. These were a super good contender for me and - if I hadn't liked any of the other ones - I would've definitely gone for these. 

However, I reeeeeeally liked the next pair, the Duval in whiskey tortoise. These were the ones that only came in this color and in blue and my time for blue glasses is over. Behold:

In the words of the kids these days, yaaaaaas! I liked these. Their angular quality reminded me of what I love about older-style glasses and my old Wayfarers. I mean, right? So at this point I knew that I would have to make a difficult decision, but I also knew that there was no doubt that I was getting a pair of new glasses. 

I had saved my favorite (online) pair for last, the Kimball in marzipan tortoise. Every time I saw a picture of these frames, either on the site directly or in the margin of my Facebook feed (because of ads), I would drool over them a little. When I showed them to my husband online, he also dug them. So here they were, finally in my hot little hands.

Simply put, yes. What I'd been wanting for the past few weeks were large light tortoiseshell frames. That's exactly what these are. I think that this look is much more "me" than what I've been currently doing for the past two years. Granted, a lot of my enthusiasm comes from the fact that I wanted to like these so badly, but, damn, son! I LOVE them! And they're my clear winner, although I like them so much that I'm worried about making the wrong choice ("Do I really like them that much? Yes, right? Hey, why aren't you answering me?! This is IMPORTANT!"). 

More importantly, though, what do y'all think? Any clear winners for you? Any words of wisdom? I turn to you, internet friends... 

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

How I wore it: she comes in colors

Hello, all!

While enthusiasm is again high, let's see what I can do here.

I stayed home from work yesterday to take care of a minorly ill Baby Boots. Today we had a baby-sitter, but I had to rush home from work in a cab (no biking, and it was perfect weather, too! Boo!) to make sure the baby-sitter could get to her rehearsal on time...

Anyway, since I realized I wouldn't be biking, I decided to go in a pencil skirt - I don't know. This combo spoke to me and I went for it:

Those were not the pajamas Baby Boots was wearing when I left the house this morning

I decided to pull on my newest Fluevogs and wear a color combo that I enjoy, dark blue and forest green (the first time I wore this anchor top, I wore it with my dark green pants). In terms of tights, the best ones I could think of were these royal blue dealies, which I'm not sure how well that worked out, but oh, well. 

I don't really like this grey cardigan I'm sporting (despite being made with some silk!), but it gets the job done. I think I ordered it last year around this time, or maybe even later in the spring/early summer because I've always wanted a plain, light, grey cardigan. This one checks all the boxes, but it's very unstructured/non-stretchy (it's hand-wash, too, so it never really "snaps" back into shape after getting washed). It's super unflattering on me, but it's one of those things that I bought more for usage than for style. Because of that, I don't mind scrunching up the sleeves, which I tend to do all day long.    It looks awful buttoned, let me tell you that for darn sure...

Anyway, that's it on my end. I'm a little distressed, personally. Right after I wrote my post the other day, I got an e-mail from my contact at the university where I want to teach offering me some part-time Hindi courses...that meet in the morning. So I can't really take them without quitting my job, and it's not worth it for two sections. GRRRRR.

Hopefully my Warby Parker free trials (supposed to come tomorrow!) will make me feel better about everything. I think you'll be surprised by the ones I chose to try on...

Grey cardigan: Gap (online)
Anchor tank top: J Crew Factory (online), remixed
Green pencil skirt: Old Navy (online), remixed
Blue tights: Gap (online), remixed
Boots: Fluevog, remixed

Monday, April 20, 2015

coming out of hibernation


Sorry, all.

It's been a while, huh?

I think I can be forgiven, though, no?

In the months that I've been absent, a lot has happened.

Namely, the Boston area was walloped by its snowiest winter ever. EVER. Let me get that through to you. I've had five snow days. It has snowed and snowed. I basically wore my yeti-Sorels every single day. I went to school in two pairs of pants more than a few times. Gross.

In the meantime, I also chaperoned a school trip to Quebec (for just two nights), went to my yearly nerdfest (academic conference), this year in New Orleans, gave a talk at an illustrious local university that has made noises about hiring me in the future, and continued living my life.

The weather has started to get a lot better over the past couple of weeks, so I've started tentatively biking again. I even commuted via bike twice last week! Of course, now it's rainy and will be so forever, so who knows when the next time will be.

In the meantime, my husband and I bought a hardcore rowing machine, so I've been keeping relatively in shape with that. It's a good excuse to watch 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' every night, which was my favorite show back in the day, but I haven't watched since it finished.

Do y'all remember that a few years ago, I was just down in the doldrums and felt myself to be in a fashion rut? Cutting off my hair helped a lot, but I got bored again and then I had no time to think about it because I got pregnant and got a job quite precipitously. Well, I'm back in the rut.

I desperately want to do something new to my hair, but I don't know what. I'd love to chop it again, but it's too expensive to maintain. I kind of, but don't, want new glasses. So I actually today ordered a free five-pair trial from Warby Parker again to see if I can find a relatively cheap way of changing my look.

So that's what's up! I hope to start posting more again...

Friday, January 23, 2015

How I wore it: second day at school

Yay for Friday! I will admit to having been at an emotional/psychological low point over the weekend, but this week really picked up: I got my hands on some books that I've been wanting for YEARS (I spent way too much money on them, but they're MINE. As soon as they ship from England.); I've been reading some really delightful Sanskrit; my draft for the talk I'm giving next month is going well (I think); I discovered a band that I didn't know (The Devil Makes Three) and I'm loving listening to them. pretty rad.

Today promised to be the last nice-ish day before it gets snowy and deadly cold again. So I decided that I'd wear my new Fluevogs again, but this time with a more unusual pant silhouette:

How good is Baby Boots' mustard sweater?!

Despite my having turned on every light in the house, you still can't tell that I'm actually wearing my new Fluevogs, but I promise you I am. I liked wearing my short new boots with my forest green ankle pants - I think it added some much needed balance to these particular pants. I love them, but they're definitely not the most flattering article of clothing I own. In the mirror, I think they look great, but when I see photos of myself, it's...not great. Especially, as usual, my generous thighs. I think the boots balanced out the whole shebang. 

The striped top with the charcoal cardigan was just a bit of fun and nonsense. 

While we're on the subject, my Fluevogs continue to get more and more comfortable, although they by no means are the shoe I'd choose to take a long hike in. Today I had a "normal" winter day: I walked a couple of miles from home to the train station, then (after a full day of work) from the school bus stop to daycare, then from daycare back home. I was definitely ready to get the boots off my feet by the end of the day, but there was no pain at all. The leather, I hope, will mold around my foot and be like buttah soon. 

Funny story: I have a couple of colleagues who are big Fluevog fans. I showed one of them my new boots today and she fell in love - she's planning to copy me and try to get a pair over the weekend...

All right, mes amis. I'm off to lounge in bed, as I have to be up early tomorrow... Happy Friday!

Charcoal sweater: Gap, remixed
Striped top: Old Navy (online), remixed
Green pants: Old Navy (online), remixed
Boots: Fluevog, remixed

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

How I wore it: school début

Hi, all! Woof, what a week. I feel as if I'm doing a thousand things at once, between preparing for next month's guest lecture, working on an independent study (badly) with a student, doing my job, and maintaining some sanity. It's ... not working.

After the past couple of weeks' bad weather (bitter cold and/or gross precipitation), I decided that this week I would début my new Fluevogs to work. I had a couple of reasons: a) I wanted to show them off and b) I wanted to ensure that they were comfortable enough to wear on a typical work day.

So today was the day! I wore a very warm and textured outfit that called for a neutral boot with a pop of color:

As usual, my color's all skewed. Dammit, poor camera-->computer skills! At least y'all can see the outline of the boots and the fact that I'm wearing a textured, nubby skirt along with a wooly sweater. 

As much as I love this sweater, its short length is awkward for me. The modesty top I wore underneath (a brownish tube top, in fact) can sometimes create a weird juxtaposition with the length of the sweater, so it makes me look pot-bellied. The other issue is, of course, since the sweater is so thick, it's not the streamlined shape I tend to prefer. Oh, well. I did enjoy the outfit, though.

The boots held up pretty well. The instep is still an issue and, while I wouldn't say that the shoes are small on me, they on my foot. I think a couple more wears will make them perfect, although I feel a little foolish, as one of my cardinal rules (especially with Fluevogs, as I've been burned before) is to not leave the store without the shoes being absolutely perfect. But they did hold up well after a long walk to the train station and they were fine throughout the day. They have a bit of a tendency to eat my socks, but we'll see how they hold up...

Here's a more flattering look at the whole look, despite the weird angle and glasses-reflection:

I...think my fatigue is coming across in these pictures. I'm sorry that the boots look like amorphous dark lumps at the bottom of my legs. I swear that in real life and in my iPhoto they looked really good. 

Oh, well.

Pink sweater: Old Navy, remixed
Olive tube top: Express, remixed
Skirt: H&M, remixed
Grey thigh-high socks (yes, that's what I'm wearing): American Apparel, remixed
Booties (I promise): Fluevog, remixed

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

How I wore it: busy!

I was excited today to have clear skies and a chance to wear boots that were not my huge-ass Sorels. Granted, it was very chilly all day, but hey - I'm getting *sigh* used to it. My big motivation today was wearing the gifts that my husband brought home from Greece on Saturday. At the same time. Let's see how I did, shall we?

I really liked this look when I thought about it, but in execution it was a bit ... much:

I mean, bright sweater, vest, novelty scarf, leg warmers, and what else?! Granted, it was under 20 degrees Fahrenheit all day, so I definitely needed all those clothes, but when I was hoping for "layered," I think I emerged as "boxy." 

Anyway, that nice bright sweater was a gift from my husband/mother-in-law. They went shopping for it on the last day of my husband's trip. Naturally, the computer isn't translating the color well, but it's a pure hibiscus: not red, not orange, but rather a tropical shade in between. I actually have a lipstick that color! 

My other gift was from my aunt-in-law/godmother. She sent my husband home with a big, honking watch, which I love:

Professional office shot!

Drool, am I right? It's huge and I love me a huge watch. I've been on an unofficial big watch hunt for some years now and I think it might be time to finish the search. I mean, at this moment, I have four watches on rotation when - until a few years ago - I only used to have one. I don't know if it's progress or not, but I think it's time to stop...

Speaking of things stopping (see what I did there? I'm a master of segue!), I think it's time for me to hop in the shower and start the long process of getting to bed, as I have a lot to do tonight. Happy Tuesday, y'all!

Vest: Desigual, by way of, remixed
Scarf: gift from my best friend, remixed
Hibiscus sweater: Benetton (Athens), gift from my mother-in-law
Black dress: Old Navy (online), remixed
Black leggings: HUE, by way of Lord and Taylor (Boston), remixed
Leg warmers: TJ Maxx, remixed
Boots: Frye, by way of, remixed
Watch: Ferendi, gift from my aunt-in-law

Monday, January 12, 2015

How I wore it: sophisticated yeti?

Today was above freezing! For most of the day! It was pretty magical. You wanna know what else was magical? Having a normal schedule again. I mean, don't get me wrong, it's nice to have my husband home because I like him, but the fact that I am sleeping in my bedroom again, showering in my bathroom, and just living my usual life (I was bunking with my daughter while my parents were in town helping out while my husband was out of town) has felt pretty awesome today. I look forward to more amazing revelations about having access to one's own beauty products at any time...

Although today's temps were above freezing, it was still rainy/snowy/wintry mix...y. So I knew I had to pull on my yeti Sorels. However, I also wanted to pair them with a sleeker outline than usual, so I did...this:

The pose is stiff as hell, but it was the best photo of the lot. I've tended to wear my big Sorels with pants or thicker leggings and a tunic of some sort, but I have to admit that I kind of loved them with the ladylike silhouette of pencil skirt and fitted sweater. Again, not really sure why I liked this so much, but I really did. I tend to feel very self-conscious in this stretchy pencil skirt, but something about balancing it out with my clodhopper boots made feel like a conquering hero. Also, I liked that it made my usually-muscular legs look delicate and girly! 

On a related note, I'm freaking out about the Quebec trip I'll be chaperoning next month. Last week the temperature dipped to -26 degrees! Fahrenheit! I...will probably not be documenting my outfits while I'm there. Snow pants, anyone?

In other news, I'm very happy today. I've just confirmed with the head of the Asian Studies department at a local university that I'll be giving a guest lecture on Indian love poetry later next month! I randomly contacted a few department chairs to ask to be put on South Asian-related mailing lists and this one guy took a look at my CV and invited me to give a talk! As you can imagine, I'll be cultivating these contacts most assiduously. Sigh. It would be so magical to work at this one particular college. It's also close to where my husband works and not, you know, in a suburb 12 miles away from home...

Anyway. You wanna know something funny about my navy top I'm wearing? I've worn it before, here (and apparently before, too?). It was my dad's. If I remember family lore correctly, my mom got it for him in the 70s and he thought it was too tight (by which he thought it was too effeminate), so he never wore it. I think I inherited it in high school, when I was wearing a lot of my parents' stuff from that decade. It's very stretchy and fitted, true, and it's pure wool, so I wear it sparingly. It's not too itchy, but some days are better than others. You can't tell from the picture, but the lapels are something else. They almost reach my shoulders. It was pretty bothersome with my hair length, let me tell you...

Happy Monday, y'all! I look forward to showing you my presents from Greece in the near future!

Navy top: my dad's, Saks Fifth Avenue label, remixed
Green pencil skirt: Old Navy (online), remixed
Blue tights: Gap (online), remixed
Boots: Sorel Joan of Arctic, by way of, remixed