Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The blues

So I had all these awesome posts planned in my head, and all these pictures I was going to take, but remember what they say about the best-laid plans? I haven't seen my advisor since Friday (we're due for a meeting tomorrow, after which I'll pick up my husband from the airport) and I've been working like a maniac. Also, my computer decided to go nuts. I went to Hamburg's Alstertal Einkaufszentrum to search out the city's Apple Store and I will be taking it in for a software upgrade tomorrow. Oof. Let's pray that my computer doesn't explode while I'm in Greece. Or, y'know, at all.

Because I wasn't planning to leave my apartment yesterday at all after my run, my trip to the Apple Store was pretty haphazard, outfit-wise. But since I had to go back today, for my Genius Bar appointment and the weather continues to be miraculously warm, I decided to kick it up a notch. Here is the dress I wore, a dress that has become a summer staple for me since I bought it in 2007:

Remember how my favorite pants are seersucker? Well, so is this dress. In the summer, there's nothing I like more than tying on a halter dress, slapping on some sandals, and calling it a day. It's what I did here. You will also note my silly Cretan sandals. As I said, I'm a big fan of this dress. I first wore it the day after I got engaged, almost three years ago, and also on my 26th birthday in Greece:

Look how young and innocent I looked three years ago! Alas, the dress doesn't fit me as well as it did then, because when I work out, I don't get supple and slim, but rather Hulk-like. And now my rib cage and chest has expanded. Awesome. Anyway, see? Same dress, three years.

In other news, I went shopping again. I promised myself I wouldn't buy anything this summer, in an attempt to save money, but after a quick scope-out of the Altertal Einkaufszentrum's H&M, I fell in love with a tank. And then I went back to buy it today.

Um, here it is:

Why, yes, that is a tank top with Lady Gaga's face on it. Why? I think this will look really good with my new leggings. Too bad they're in the US. I'm gonna look like such a graduate student in the fall!

Anyway, that's all for now. Tomorrow is gonna be a big day, academically, romantically, and - hopefully - technologically. Wish me luck so that I no longer go crazy with my computer!!

Seersucker dress: H&M
Silver sandals: some store in Crete, remixed

Friday, June 25, 2010

How I wore it: Lonely Planet


Today the rash of good weather continues in Hamburg, as it is currently past 9:30 PM and sunny and breezy outside. It's quite lovely. I think I've calculated it perfectly so that I won't need an umbrella at least until my husband comes in from Greece, which is good, cuz I didn't pack one.

Today was a very lazy day, but I did have an over two-hour meeting with my advisor amidst all the lounging and MTV watching. Also, I won't see him again till Wednesday, so I thought I'd make a bit of an effort with my outfit. What better to put on my jet-lagged body than my favorite black dress?

The expression on my face is douchey, but I like the pose a lot. So I'm keeping it up there. What do you know? My main staple, a black dress, and boots? Crazy. At least I wore a scarf for visual interest. This outfit turned out to be perfect for the weather: it was warm and sunny, but breezy, and to get to my adviser's office, I have to walk a little by the enormous Alster lake, which added a bit more of a stiff breeze. I didn't need a jacket while walking, although I wouldn't have been overly warm with one, but I'm glad I wore boots and not sandals, and the scarf was a welcome covering.

I like to pack a nice silk scarf during summer vacations. I usually go with a cheap H&M one that's multicolored and matches almost everything, but I love this turquoise one so much (it's been featured here a few times before) that I thought I'd pack it for this trip and clashing be damned. I'm not sure if a pretty scarf really goes with tough boots, but I was very comfortable and felt pleasantly girlish and put-together and tough.

We'll see what the next few days will bring. I'm planning on going running tomorrow, my first real international jog (unless you count the time I went "running" in Sparta with my husband and after 1 km decided to pack it in and watch TV the rest of the day...), as well as working like a maniac on the corrections that my advisor recommended. I'm also hoping to explore Hamburg a little bit as well this weekend.

Bis später!

Turquoise scarf: From a scarf stall in the Prudential Mall, Boston, remixed
Black dress: Gap, remixed
Blue boots: Frye Veronica Slouch, by way of zappos.com, remixed 

Thursday, June 24, 2010

How I wore it: Deutschland edition!


Sorry for the lack of posts: I landed in Germany yesterday afternoon after a whirlwind three days with my family in New York, during which time a lot of stuff happened, very little of which was cute-outfit or style-related. Anyway, I got to Hamburg yesterday and have been here for about twenty-four hours. I saw my thesis advisor for a bit yesterday and plan to see him again tomorrow, giving me the day off today to do some shopping, errands, and exploring of my new neighborhood (St. Georg, for those of you following along).

Because the Hamburg weather is suspiciously good for this summer, I decided to go crazy and wear a skirt. Actually, I couldn't do anything less: I was way too hot even on my morning quest for groceries with a skirt, tank top, sandals, and light jacket. Let me remind you all: this is unusual for Hamburg. This city is touted as the rainiest city in Germany (I can't remember where I read this) and it rains all year long, even (if my last two visits were any indication) in the summer. The raininess is accompanied by relatively cool temperatures, even in the summer, because it's so north (on the other hand, of course, it gets dark really late at night in the summer). My first summer there, I definitely learned to pack a raincoat/jacket/sweater with every outing because it was quite cool (end of July - early August). Last summer, there were a few really hot days (early - late July), but most of the time, my husband and I were shivering and rain-soaked. However, yesterday and today, and seemingly for the foreseeable future, if my Dashboard isn't lying to me, it's been sunny and really warm - mid-high 70s, which is, again, unusual in Hamburg, even in the summer. My friends here told me that it's a welcome anomaly.

Whew: that was a long justification for wearing a skirt. Here I am!

You've seen elements of this outfit before: I've owned this skirt for almost ten years. And this tank top is what I usually wear it with, although not so much over the past year because of my modesty-insistent job. You can also note my flip-flops, stolen from my childhood closet year after year for home and beach activities over vacation. I'm not showing you the shoes I *actually* wore outside because no one needs to see how far my true love of Birkenstocks actually extends.

Not bad for so little sleep, right?

In other news, today was the first day, since March 19th, that I've not dried my hair with a hair-dryer. Because of getting the blunt bangs, I didn't trust the air to dry my hair correctly. As I tend to have crazy-big/wavy/frizzy hair naturally (it used to be stick-straight once, guys, what's up with this?!), I've always been very careful to comb out my bangs while drying so that they look awesome and not ... insane. Anyways, as luck would have it, my hair-dryer doesn't convert to European voltage (I could've figured that out before taking it to New York, but whatever) and so I was forced to air-dry. I made sure to comb my bangs while drying, and the REST of my hair is a little over-curly, but what can ya do... it didn't turn out too bad!

The bangs are a little wavier than I would like, but nothing out of the ordinary of how I normally look. Wow. You an really see the jet lag effects in this picture. I'm gonna need to slap on a little more make-up tomorrow. I'm pretty!!

Anyways, that's about it for me. I've done a tiny bit of Sanskrit work and I have lots more to do before my conscience dies down.


Black tank top: H & M, remixed
Red skirt: Dickie's brand, via a boutique in Philadelphia, remixed
Black flip-flops: ??? Had for decades, stolen from home for European shenanigans

Saturday, June 19, 2010

¡Goooooooooooool! (And shopping...)

On Friday, there were two soccer games that my husband and I cared about on the World Cup, namely Argentina (vs. South Korea) and Greece (vs. Nigeria), so we decided to have people over to watch the game(s) and try out our new grill. Which was delicious. The day ended up being an impromptu twelve-hour playdate with a colleague from my school, later her husband, and some friends of ours from Greece. Yay for summer vacation!

Although the weather wasn't fabulous, my house is pretty warm when the A/C isn't on, and we were by a grill, so I decided to just put on a dress and that's it. I took a couple of walks for a hamburger bun emergency mission as well as a short stroll with friends, so I slapped on some shoes for that:

I bought this dress from Ann Taylor Loft soon before the trip to Greece where I got engaged. I wore it a fair amount that trip, but not really since then. I can pretty much pinpoint when the last time I wore it before yesterday was (and the year was 2007...). It's pretty and comfortable, but the tie at the neck can be painful and I get frustrated with strapless dresses: even on Friday I was yanking the top of the dress up to make sure I didn't inadvertently flash my bra at a hapless colleague.

Anyway, the games went well. Argentina won 4-0 and Greece won 2-1 (the first goals it's ever scored in the World Cup, let alone won a game!)...

Yesterday I went shopping at the Gap. I wanted a dress that I coveted from the website and then I bought some, um, other stuff. I held myself back from buying overalls, at least.

THESE ARE MY NEW LEGGINGS! I've not owned leggings since the mid 90s, when they were still fresh and hip. When the leggings trend first re-started, I was pretty proud that I had lived through a trend that had cycled back. Then I wanted to go around telling people that leggings weren't pants. Then I just decided to let people be, but privately thought "Nope. Not gonna happen." for myself. Then I started buying skinny jeans, wearing tunics like it was my job, and falling in love with boots. Then I dithered for years about whether to buy leggings or not. Then I started feeling bad about myself. Finally, I decided to go for it...at some point. But yesterday, at the Gap, I was looking for the dress I wanted to try on and there was a stack of leggings (with a sign that read, simply, "Leggings") in black and grey. I went for the grey, tried them on a wee bit bigger than my actual size, liked the effect, and bought them. So, voilà! I now own a pair of grey leggings with a zipper up the back leg. They pretty much reach right at my ankle and they're gonna look adorable with boots. I'm not packing them this summer - this is strictly a fall/pants weather thing. But I'm very excited to look like an unemployed graduate student again!

The other thing I bought was a maxi dress. Yes, I know, long dresses are in this year. But here's the thing - they've been big every year for the past couple of years. I do own one very long summer dress, which I love, and I wanted another. Also, I was playing mental packing chess and I decided that if I found another dress I liked a lot, I wouldn't pack my black hemp dress for the summer. I mean, it's a great dress and all, but I'm definitely gonna take my black jersey dress, it's hard to zip up on its own and I don't like the shoulder ties. Hmmm, now I'm rethinking my decision. No, it still stands. Anyways, here's my new jersey dress!

Doesn't it look graceless and gross when hanging there? No matter. I love it on and my husband adored it when he saw it. It just skims the top of my feet, so no need to wear heels with it. It's simple - just throw it on; it's flattering - loose enough to not make me look fat, but clingy enough so that I look as if I have a shape... it's not black, which is exciting (navy and grey stripes); I also like the racerback back. I look forward to slipping it on over my head in Greece, zipping up my crazy gladiator sandals, and hitting the road.

In more exciting news, I'm off to New York today to spend some time with my family before leaving for Europe on Tuesday! My husband will go straight to Athens, but I'll be going to Hamburg and he'll join me at the end of June for our wedding anniversary and the rest of my research trip. Then, in early-mid July? GREEEEEEEEEEEECE! I can't wait.

Checked dress: Ann Taylor Loft
Moccasins: Minnetonka, via Lord and Taylor, remixed

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Schooooooool's out for! Ever!

So as you can imagine, today was my last day of work! Yay! I didn't miss too much of the World Cup and my colleagues got to see what I looked like in pants for three days. Today I opted for total comfort and wore my very favorite pants (see me waxing rhapsodic about them here) along with a tank top commemorating my husband's favorite Athenian team (Olympiakos all the way, baby!). Although you can't really see them peeking out, I also wore my Birkenstocks. I was very comfortable and very ready for the announcement dismissing us all for the next three (or in my case, forever) months. 

I'm having some dilemmas about packing these pants to Europe this summer, despite swearing that I would. While they are comfortable and wearing them feels like wearing pyjamas, that's...kind of the problems. I may feel crisp and New England-y while wearing them, but when I see them in pictures (such as the one above and some from last summer in Athens), I feel as if it actually looks as if I were wearing PJs. And I want to present a more polished image when I'm on the streets of Hamburg and Athens. Also, on the one hand, when I'm in Greece I tend to only wear dresses and skirts and so having any pants aside from jeans is kind of overkill. On the other hand, Hamburg is famous for its fickle weather and packing all sorts of pants might be necessary. Furthermore, for the hot days in Greece that I don't want to wear a dress, lightweight pants are also a good thing to have on hand. Arrrgh! Decisions! 

I'll take them to New York with me this weekend (from where I'll be leaving for the summer) and make my decision last-minute. Then I'll just have to live with it. 

... That's how I roll.

Red/white top: Bought from an Olympiakos merchandise store in Athens
Seersucker pants: Gap, remixed
Sandals: Birkenstocks, via Tip Top Shoes in New York, remixed 

Saturday, June 12, 2010

How I wore it: Babies!!!

So today was a very low-key day at Boots headquarters. I went out for a couple of hours in the afternoon to run some errands. And I basically watched soccer all day long. I love the World Cup, have I mentioned? In other news, my husband and I went out with last-minute planning and saw that movie, 'Babies,' about...babies. [Mongolian baby ftw!]

This is what I wore - I let my legs take center stage:

Although the colors are fouled up, I'm wearing my blue boots with blue stockings to match. Everything else I'm wearing is neutral, as you can see, with a plain grey t-shirt and a neutral beige skirt. I wore the exact same outfit in the afternoon, minus the tights, so I just decided to update it for a rainy, cool evening.

It may not have been the most flattering outfit, but it was relaxing to wear calming colors and bright legs. It's also nice to get a chance to wear boots, even in mid-June. I'll probably be packing the blue boots with me over the summer, not for Greece of course, but for Germany. It's very cool and rainy in Hamburg, even in the summer, and a good pair of boots wouldn't be overkill, I don't think...

Uninspiring today, but what can ya do?

Grey t-shirt: American Apparel
Beige skirt, Gap outlet, remixed
Blue tights (footless!): Gap
Blue boots: Frye Veronica slouches, by way of Zappos.com, remixed

Friday, June 11, 2010

Hint of summer vacation

Yesterday was (finally!) the last day of school for every single student at my place of work. I can't believe I attended four last-day ceremonies (two for high-school students, two for everyone else). The cool thing is that, despite faculty meetings next week, we were allowed to leave with the kids yesterday and we get today off. Which is very important, because the World Cup begins today.

I woke up feeling pretty gross yesterday and the weather agreed with me. It got cooler, by a lot, and drizzled most of the day. So despite rebelliously not wearing stockings for the past three or four weeks, I put some on yesterday as a final hurrah:

I told you guys that I could live in this dress! Since I was feeling ill and it's kind of my staple dress, it was the perfect last-day outfit. Although you can't really see them, my stockings are the bottle-green patterned ones that I've worn many times before (e.g., here). I of course wore a modesty cardigan for work (plus a jacket, to be quite honest, because cold).

I actually stayed in the dress well into evening because we invited a trustee of our building -- who happens to be a retired music professor -- for refreshments and chatting. I really needed to be in warm PJs and fuzzy slippers, but I kept it together. I even baked in this outfit! In fact, the picture above was taken after putting a batch of something sweet and delicious in the oven.

Apart from being the last day of seeing students (ever, in my case), yesterday also marked the last day I have to wear a dress/skirt to work! I plan on wearing pants every single day next week, even if it gets too warm.

So yeah, despite still feeling pretty ill, I'm quite psyched about summer vacation (almost) starting:

(I approve)

Black dress: Gap, remixed
Green patterned stockings: Gap, remixed
Black flats: Me Too by way of DSW, remixed

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Back to black

So two days ago was the boys' graduation at my school and I also decided to dress a little more fancy for that. Instead of going brightly colored, the way I had for the girls, I went for my more comfortable color palette: black.

I bought this dress at a store in Boston called The Hempest. It's 100% hemp and feels like a sort of scratchier linen. I got it right around my wedding two years ago and it's become a summer basic since then. I packed it to Greece last year and it was definitely a staple for any event: I could dress it up with shoes and jewelry [my baptism, my mother-in-law's name day, dinner out with friends] or dress it down for a hot, dusty day of walking around Athens. The only thing I don't like about the dress is the strap situation -- I like a slightly less fussy strap instead of the ties. They're never even and if I wear a sweater (the way I did for work, bien sûr), I feel as if the bows' bumps are very visible. I do love the neckline of the dress and the way it makes me feel slim and pretty. My husband, who can sometimes make amazing fashion analyses of my outfits, says that when I wear it over the summer, I look like a theatre actress on her day off.

Anyway, for the rest of the outfit, I just pulled on the bright red wedges and some matching carnelian jewelry and called it a day.

Because of wanting to fancy it up, I wore contacts both that day and the day before. I wear contacts so infrequently now that it was kind of a big deal for me, but go figure -- no one else noticed. When my husband and I first met in early 2006, I looked pretty different. I had very short, Mia Farrow-esque hair and never wore my glasses, only contacts. As you know, I only started wearing glasses regularly when I got my last pair in February of 2008. I sometimes felt as if I had tricked my husband by turning into a four-eyes who deviated a lot from the girl he met two years earlier. However, Thursday night, my husband -- who claims not to prefer contacts over glasses or vice versa: he just likes variety, he says -- complained that I'd been wearing contacts too much and that he missed my glasses. I'd like to point out that I wore contacts only twice this past week and once the week before, for his birthday. Before that, I hadn't worn any since late April. I'm glad that he said it, though. I'm starting to feel as if I look a little naked without my big Ray Bans now.

With that, I'm off -- bye!

Black dress: The Hempest, a hemp-oriented store in Boston
Red wedges: CL by Laundry, by way of DSW, remixed

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

I wear colors when I want to

Today the girls of my school graduated and I decided to pull out a dress that I wear very infrequently. I had wanted to wear it at least once before school ended and I thought that the girls would appreciate it more than the boys, who graduate tomorrow, and would even appreciate the sentimental value behind it:

You see, I got married in this dress about a year and eleven months ago. [The sharp-eyed among you might also recognize the pattern from my header] My husband and I got married in Boston's City Hall in June of 2008 and I wore this cool patterned dress that I had bought on a whim a few weeks earlier for the first time. That day I wore bright orange sandals and very minimal jewelry. Today I decided to keep it simple with the shoes [we're not allowed sandals at work and heels are tough for me], but go crazy with the jewelry. So I wore my turquoise earrings, necklace, and ring, which matched the light blue flowers on my dress perfectly.

Although you cannot see my head or feet in this picture, you can, however, see the jewelry in all its glory. Cool, huh?

(Both pictures were taken at my place of work: shocking!)

Alas, today in the subway, the turquoise stone fell off of my ring, but I caught the noise as it fell, slid it back into place, and have resolved to get it glued back on or something. A bummer, but what can you do?

It was nice to dress colorfully today--everyone said something and I loved being able to respond, "Thanks! I got married in this dress!"

[Funny story: when I suggested wearing this dress for the wedding, my husband did not approve at all, although he thought the dress was cute -- he thought it wasn't "formal" enough for our civil ceremony. I got mad at him, he got mad at me, and when I wouldn't budge, he bought some fancy clothes that wouldn't be too overdressed for the ceremony and I wore this dress and rocked the hell out of it. Which he agreed with. That is all]

Flowered dress: Ann Taylor Loft
Mustard flats: Nine West, by way of DSW, remixed
Turquoise earrings: Banana Republic, remixed
Turquoise ring: anniversary gift from my husband, remixed
Turquoise pendant; Macy's

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Schooooool's out! For! The summer!

...well, not really. But today was the last day of classes and the last day that I see a few of the kids. Sad face. After school, I stayed behind because we had a dinner honoring the senior girls, who graduate tomorrow. So I thought I'd dress somewhat pretty:

You've seen this skirt a lot before. I decided to wear it again with a simple black color scheme. The only pops of color I allowed were my necklace, my shoes, and my bracelet, which all matched in their shared color of red.

(Barely seen, my shoes are my patent-leather red wedges--you've seen 'em before, like here.)

I was comfortable all day and felt vaguely flirty, with my red accents and black/white color palette. I look forward to wowing the students all next week with my planned graduation outfits. I'll keep you posted!

Black and white skirt: Gap, remixed
Red shoes: Chinese by Laundry, via DSW, remixed
Black cardigan: Ann Taylor Loft
Black tank top (underneath): H & M