Feeling Kinda Springy

So after my last post’s burst of optimism, the universe decided to even the score, as it always does, with a mountain of service work.  But I’ve clawed my way out of that, for the time being, and now I just need to get through one more week and it’s Spring Break!  And while we’re still a couple of weeks away from the equinox, we’re now at a point at IPF South where it’s light out when I wake up AND when I get home from work — which goes a long way to making things feel manageable.

But, as spring approaches here, that also means that tight and boot weather is fast disappearing — so I’m wearing them while I can.

Dress, Cami, & Blazer: Target; Tights: Hue; Boots: Jessica Simpson

Dress, Cami, & Blazer: Target; Tights: Hue; Boots: Jessica Simpson

This blazer continues to be a workhorse.  And key for making whimsical tights seem serious and important.


In person, the tights are more of a muted berry color, rather than neon pink.  Though, truthfully, I would love them if they were neon pink.

Dress: Old Navy; Scarf: Gap; Tights: Hue; Boots: as above

Dress: Old Navy; Scarf: Gap; Tights: Hue; Boots: as above

This dress is a new addition, and part of my current obsession with all things chambray. Also, the dress wasn’t the wrinkly this morning; this is the result of sitting while my students wrote a mid-term, driving to a coffee shop from the office, sitting in a coffee shop and working, and then driving home.


I bought this scarf at the Gap during their pre-Christmas sale after falling in love with it.  But once I got it home, I’ve struggled with what to pair it with.  This is sort of stupid as I love these colors (seriously I’ve used these paint colors throughout my house) but, for some reason, I’ve got a real block about what to do with it.  Fortunately, everything matches chambray!

How’s everyone (in the Northern Hemisphere) enjoying the increased daylight?  Anyone got any suggestions for the mint/ coral scarf?

Things Later Regretted

Happy New Year, StyleNation – and Happy New Term to the academics in the group!

As it is now the ides of janvier, we had best get this party re-started, n’est-ce pas?

In recent past, the brilliant E-Jo recommended that I read Ruth Ozeki’s wonderfully terrifying novel My Year of Meats. Among MANY other things, My Year of Meats introduced me to the historical Japanese writer Sei Shōnagon and her hilariously ruthless, poetical lists.

In short, thanks to E-Jo, Ozeki, and Shōnagon, I introduce a new feature here at IPF. Over the next while, I’ll use Shōnagon’s titles to create new lists—and I’ll enlist your help in expanding them, StyleNation!

For reasons that may become obvious shortly, I shall begin as follows:

Things Later Regretted

1. To eat mountains of sweets and drink gallons of nog and mulled wine over one’s holidays.

2. To squeeze one’s increasing girth into one’s beautiful, already-fitted leather skirt for the first day of teaching, and to blow out a seam in the process:


Scarf: Smartset; Top: Dalia (via Costco, the evil empire with whom I recently broke up); Skirt: Danier Leather (thrifted, new to blog); Tights: Hue (remixed); Shoes: Fly London

(here’s a shoe close-up):


3. To inform one’s spouse that one of their gifts was gently re-wrapped and re-gifted from the box of last year’s gifts (found recently in the back of his office).

4. To agree to teach yet another new course when one desperately needs more time to apply for grants and publish in order to retain one’s job.

5. To ask one’s favourite undergrad to house-and-dogsit, and to mention that they may help themselves to the wine.

Now it’s your turn, StyleNation.

What might you add to “Things Later Regretted”?


I don’t have much to offer you lovely people today as summer continues apace here with its pattern of working and complaining about the heat moving along nicely.  As I mentioned in my last post, I’ve gotten into a nice little work routine where I meet up with friends to work in coffee shops in the afternoon.  Working with other people helpfully shames me into getting far more work done than I do on my own.  Shame, as always, continues to be my greatest and most effective motivator.

Alongside this work routine, I’ve developed a bit of a uniform.  See if you can tell its constituent parts in the following:

Exhibit A:

White t: Old Navy; Brown shorts: Target; Striped scarf: Joe; Black patent Birkenstocks

Exhibit B:

top and shoes: as above; Brown pants & scarf: Old Navy

These shirts are the Old Navy ones that Ally at Wardrobe Oxygen mentioned a couple of months ago and I’m, more or less, obsessed with them.  I think I’ve got six in a pretty regular rotation right now.  I’ve been wearing them A LOT with the cotton pants in the bottom picture — you guys know how much I love an Old Navy cotton casual pant — which I also have in a khaki color.  The pants are good for the freezing coffee shops but light enough that I don’t collapse from heat stroke the minute I go outside.  This makes for comfortable outfits, but not exactly the most visually thrilling ones.  And, if I’m being honest, the outfit is frequently sans scarf.  It’s a thrilling life I lead here.

Anyone else got a style uniform they develop in extreme temperatures?  Or during periods of non-stop work?

The Return

You know what’s awesome?  Being away from the Southern heat for ten days.  After a brief respite where I wore both pants and long-sleeved things (though, don’t worry, I didn’t take a single outfit picture to commemorate this), I’m back in the trenches of the blazing North American heat that many of you are currently “enjoying.”  Though I do derive some small comfort from others suffering through just a few days of that which I get for five months out of the year.  Schadenfreude over.

These outfit pictures today come from before my trip.

Cardi: Gap Outlet; Cement-colored tank: Loft Outlet; Blue mullet skirt: Target; Black patent Birkenstocks

This is the blue version of my mullet skirt.  It was way too hot for a cardigan but this tank is both a touch of a neckline offender and, because it’s basically the same color as me, can appear pretty naked-y up top.  I believe I was going on campus that day so the cardi helped make the outfit less of a problem.  Because, clearly, just changing my shirt wasn’t an option.

I’m not usually a wearer of multiple different tones of the same color but, I have to say, I liked this pairing.  The light dove grey between the two certainly helped too.

Like I said above, I didn’t take any outfit photos while on my travels but I do have the following partial, not-super-flattering-when-cropped photos that give a reasonable snapshot of my trip.  Not coincidentally, both are wine-related.

Sweater: Gap; Jeans: Old Navy; Tan striped & be-sequined shirt: Joe Fresh; Sneakers: Grey Chucks; Faux-leather messenger bag: Jo’s Totes (it’s also a camera bag); Giant bottle of wine: sadly not brought home with me. Also, it’s made of stone.

This one’s in Oslo.

Shirt: Old Navy; Awesome infinity scarf with birds on it: somewhere in Berlin that I can’t remember

This is from Paris, right before some fabulous steak frites and, even later, a pretty amazing pistachio creme brulee.

How’re your summers going so far?

Monday, Monday

Man, does it ever feel like November here (apart from the fact that I still can’t completely turn off the air-conditioning): I spent the weekend grading, it’s gray and blustery today, and I just want to stay in my pjs all day.  While I work out some way to dress today that’s basically pajamas but still teaching acceptable, here’s a couple of things I was wearing last week.

Black faux-wrap shirt: Joe
Black tank: Target
Jeggings: Old Navy
Gold flats: Nine West
Feather print scarf: France

Here’s an outfit built around the scarf I bought in France (detail shot below).  It’s silk and gorgeous, and subtly the colors of the tricolore.  The rest of the outfit didn’t photography well here but it’s really beside the point: it’s merely a background for feathery goodness.

Dress: Old Navy
Cardigan: Gap
Gold flats: Nine West
Purple tights: Target
Scarf: Germany

I love this dress.  It’s the perfect piece for showing off things like scarfs or bright blue cardigans.  This is also my first foray into the colorful tights arena.  I love a dark purple so this seemed well within my comfort zone.  

Inspired by M. of An Epic Battle in High Heels, I went for a long overdue head suit alteration.  I didn’t get a shot of it when doing these outfit pictures, but one’s coming…  My hair’s the longest it’s been in years so I find that haircuts appear less significant but there’s something to be said for the psychological effect of having a tidied up head–even if just externally!  

The Final Push

I just realized that this week is the first of the final third of the term.  Yikes.  Also, how has this term gone by so quickly?  I get a bunch of assignments in today that really kickstart the unending pattern of grading, returning assignments, receiving more that characterizes the end of term.  It’s also the part of the term where students who’ve previously treated things lackadaisically begin to realize that they’ve been doing so and want to try and wheedle extensions out of me.  I’m kind of a hard ass on the topic of extensions, though, right now, I’m kind of feeling their pain a bit as I could use an extension or two myself.  At least the weather is finally cooling down…

Coral tank: Addition-Elle
White tank: Target
Black & grey striped pencil skirt: Old Navy
Scarf: German find (better detail shot here)
Gold flats: Nine West

These outfits are from before the temperature began to drop. As part of “Operation: Wear nothing but Pencil Skirts,” this skirt is a recent addition.  It’s made of really stretchy jersey so it’s actually somewhat difficult to walk in, at least until it stretches out a bit (it’s kind of like a jersey covered elastic band).  It’s also quite a bit longer than I might like — I’ve got it really hiked up here (wearing it at my waist puts it several inches below my knees) — and so I’m deciding whether I want to get it hemmed or leave it with a somewhat flexible length.

Tank & Jeans: Old Navy
Flats: as above
B&W bracelet: Gift from my sister’s trip to Morocco
Pink bracelet: World Market

This was from a non-teaching day.  And, confession time, I’m pretty sure these are actually jeggings.  However, they’re flared and made of denim, rather than denim-printed spandex so I’m ok with this.  They’re super comfy and replace, for the time being, my jeans of a heavier denim.  I also enjoy how the mini-FR is all blur, all the time in his most recent appearances.  This is probably a fairly accurate representation of him.

My Halloween plans include teaching this evening, and bribing my students with candy.  As I’m a bit of a Halloween grinch, this works for me.  Any of you got big plans?

Coming Home

Hi all!  I’m back, States-side, after a lovely excursion to France and Germany.  It was a packed 10 days, full of baguettes, nutella crepes, wine, schnitzel and giant beers.  So, in other words, pretty awesome.  I even managed to keep my spending to only-slightly excessive, going on a bit of scarf-buying binge.  But now I’m back in the world of reality, made all too real by the stack of mid-terms I had waiting for me on my return.

When I was in Berlin, my sister was there, helping organize a conference for 3000+ urologists so I got to tag along to the banquet dinner.  My sister kindly took my single outfit picture from the trip.

Sweater: Gap Outlet
Ruffle-y top: Joe
Charcoal pencil skirt: Lane Bryant
Tights: Target, I believe
Gold Flats: Nine West 

I wasn’t really expecting to go to this, so I had limited options for dressiness.  However, it gave me a chance to wear my new pencil skirt which I hadn’t worn during my conference because it was so freezing in the conference room that I wore pants the whole time.  

Black t-shirt: Gap outlet
Gray pencil skirt: Lane Bryant
Multi-colored circle scarf: Vero Moda (part of my German haul)
Blue suede shoes, obscured by mini-FR blur: Jessica Simpson 

This was my outfit for yesterday’s return to the classroom.  There’s a lot going on with the scarf so I thought a neutral backdrop was probably necessary — and allowed the scarf to be the star.  Be prepared for a number of similarly scarf-centric outfits from me in the next little while to showcase my purchases!

Detail shot of scarf and shoes.
Now for a couple of pictures from the trip itself…
Baguette, Boursin, Macarons: dinner of champions.  (Not pictured: the bottle of Cote du Rhones that accompanied this) 
An Alp
My sister and I on the train to Potsdam (I’m wearing another new, German scarf)

How’ve you guys been?  

30 for 30: Catching Up

Hello Style Nation on this glorious Thanksgiving-eve. Mostly it’s glorious here because I cancelled my class today (fortunately, unlike for Rad, it’s not a problem here) so I’ve got effectively a week off. And then only 4 teaching days left! Woohoo! I’ve also booked my ticket home (sort of — we’re doing Christmas in Montreal with my two sisters this year) for the holidays (which are going to be sadly A-Dubs and D-Med free) and I fly out in exactly three weeks. Things are looking up! There’s something about the end of term where the insanity becomes manageable because you know that it’ll be over with soon (mostly). Also, I’ve lucked out this term and have non-complaining students (though, that’s one of the benefits of my (very) conservative students: they tend to cave in the face of even a modicum of authority).*
Anyhow… to the outfits!
Black top & purple flats: Joe
White t-shirt: Gap Outlet
Grey pants: Target

So, it’s decided to get weirdly warm again here which has made working with my 30 items a little difficult this week as I’ve got lots of sweaters and very few short sleeves. Thank god for a single teaching day.

Dress: Old Navy
Gold flats: Nine West
Gorgeous purple scarf: gifted from A-Dubs
One thing you might not know about A-Dubs and D-Med is that they are two of finest gift givers around. This scarf is one such gift. The photo doesn’t do justice to the gorgeousness of the purple — it’s both brighter and richer. It helped punch up this dress nicely and made the chestal arena SFW.

Top: Gap Outlet
Skirt: Gap, ages ago
Purple flats: Joe
Scarf: Old Navy
So you’re probably all getting a little sick of these gold and purple flats. I know I am, just a little. The last weeks have been busy in a way that has me reaching for easy & comfortable footwear — leaving my lovely heels languishing in my house. Next week, however, I promise to wear them, setting them free from their gilded cage.

*Apparently, I’d should be giving thanks for whoever invented parentheses. They can consider themselves thanked.

So, American readers, what are you looking forward to making yourself sick on in the next few days? And for our Canadian readers, what wisdom can you pass on to us in terms of digestion aids?

Not Red and Black

D-Med got me thinking about tights, and I’m trying not to wear so much red and black. To quote a Style Nation citizen’s recent post*, “that’s all I’ve got.”

Except that I don’t like these boots anymore. But I had to talk about commodity fetishism in this morning’s lecture. The boots are integral to this discussion. Ok. Now, that’s all.

Wool dress: Calvin Klein (via Melanie Lyne)
Silk giant-rose-print scarf: no clue (I hate tags on scarves, so like a dummy, I cut it off & threw it away)
Swirl-pattern tights: Hue (via Winners)
Boots: Feet First

This is about as short as I can comfortably go, skirt-wise, in the classroom. And I ALWAYS wear this dress with black tights. It’s too short to wear with coloured tights for teaching, right?

What up, Style Nation? 

Americanos, when are you offline for the holiday, if at all? 

More importantly, when can we expect you back?

* I’m sorry that I can’t find your name, but if you comment below, I’ll edit to credit