What I Wore This Week: My Summer Uniform Goals

I feel a little…conflicted about all the summer clothes I just unpacked.  I’m starting to have to serious doubts about the whole puffy skirt situation.  So I’ve been thinking about “the Summer Uniform” and I have a few goals to work on this season.

1. I’d like to try to wear everything at least once to decide if I like it or not before I put it back in the dresser drawer on hang it in my closet.

2. I think I’d like to try to get a little bit less dressy, but I’d also like to buy more dresses.  This sounds counter intuitive  but I can just thrown a t shirt dress over my head and be good to go.  Although I can add heels and a belt and earrings and a necklace, I don’t have to.  A dress can be casual or pretty dressed up.  But most of the skirts I have need a tucked in shirt and heels and a belt and a necklace and a jacket before they look anything but sloppy, and all that…stuff just doesn’t say “relax in your backyard” to me.

3. I’d like to reduce the amount of clothes I have but I’d like to increase the percentage of winners in my closet.  I’d rather have five great skirts than 20 that are only ok, so hopefully by wearing EVERYTHING and taking a picture of it, I can really figure out what looks GREAT and just keep that stuff.  I have no idea what to do with the old stuff though – I feel awkward asking people if they want my old clothes that are too big for me and I don’t really have the energy to sell it on Ebay, especially because it doesn’t really seem that profitable.  I was thinking about selling it at a used online consignment but they usually only take higher end stuff and even when it is good stuff, you only make about $3-5 dollars an item. I’d rather just give it to someone if I’m only going to get $3 for it.

4. I’d like to get more green in my closet and less orange. I have A LOT of orange clothes, which is cool, but all of a sudden I am really feeling the kelly green/white/navy/gold combination.  I’m in the market for straight green cotton skirt, if anyone sees one. I know just what I want, which means no one will have it until next year, when everyone will have it.

5. I’d like to figure out how to make the ironing situation work.  Our house is so small that we keep our ironing board in the garage, which means we never iron anything, but unfortunately a lot of this summery stuff is also wrinkly. It just doesn’t make sense not to be able to work out some solution so I can quickly iron a skirt in the morning – it makes such a difference in how things look and I need to find a workable solution to this.

Anyway.  This is what I wore this week.

Home Depot OUtfit

{J. Crew Factory Bermuda shorts (on super sale!), Gap tee, Gap Outlet sweater, Havaianas}

Erik and I are working through the world’s longest list of boring house tasks.  It’s not fun, like “shop for stuff”, it’s the truly terrible stuff we’ve put off for five years like “fix loose outlet cover”. It involves a lot of trips to Home Depot, and like I said, I just can’t see doing this stuff in a skirt and a belt and heels and a necklace.  I think these shorts still look nice though! I feel good about this, it just doesn’t photograph “fancy”.

kate spade necklace target skirt

{Allegedly Kate Spade Necklace via Ebay, Gap tanks, Mossimo Skirt, Havaianas}

Now here’s what I mean about the poofy skirts. I would NEVER have picked out this skirt for myself – it’s so short and tight and fitted! My sister in law Emily found it on super clearance at Target and sent it to me because she is awesome, and I LOVE it, and it looked SO much better than any of the poofy skirts I tried on and rejected this week.  Yes, it was a little sexy pants, but it just seemed like it fit better and looked more put together and less juvenile than a billowy cotton skirt.  But it was also simple and totally suited to sitting around doing nothing in the sunshine.

This skirt plus my polka dotted pencil skirt has me really rethinking the skirts I wore so much last summer. I still think there’s a place for a very well fitting well ironed poofy skirt, especially worn higher, maybe belted and with a tucked in shirt? But I am definitely thinking I need to break out of my “this is the silhouette that works for me” ideas I have had ingrained for so long.


{Green Target cardigan, AE Artist Crops, Havaianas, Gap tanks}

I have gotten so many compliments on this cardigan! I really love it.  It makes my preppy soul very happy with the navy and the green. Also, I finally found a ribbed tank available in navy AND petite sizing! Yeah! Now I need a kelly green one, if anyone sees one out there, please let me know. J. Crew does have a green one but they don’t sell petites, annoyingly.

These crops do not give me muffin top but they DO slide down.  Lame. I am seriously wondering where I can get some grippy underwear.  Doesn’t that sound like a good invention? I think so.  That and a Lego Sweeper and a Flushable Toilet Paper Tube. Get on it, peeps.


{J. Crew Tippis Sweater, Gap Scarf, Gap Perfect Trouser Pants, Franco Sarto Wedges}

And then it was freezing cold. But I got to wear these pants again, and after I wore them last week and washed them (apparently for the first time?) they shrank a bit, and now they fit PERFECTLY and are the absolute correct length.  So happy about that.


{Loft tee, Garnet Hill skirt, Havaianas}
See what I mean? This outfit is not the greatest, and it’s because it needs about four more things to be great. A belt, a jacket, etc.  But I don’t want to wear ALL THE THINGS when it’s 87 degrees out and I am sitting by a kiddie pool all afternoon.  So that’s why I think – dresses.  Dresses have to be the answer. I am still sure I can do better by this skirt, and this t shirt needs…something else, but the skirts…eh. Whatever.


{Canvas Dress, Handmade scarf, Target cardigan, Toms Prison Wedges}

Finding a cardigan that worked with this was a feat of epic proportions, but then I found this combo and it really worked.  There’s something about the length of this dress plus the heels that is very flattering to the old yegs. Also, as the day went on, I just took of all the extra layers (it was super hot this day) and it worked really well but still looked nice because it was a dress.  So there you go.


{Banana Republic Striped T-Shirt Dress, Handmade scarf, J. Crew wedges}

Dear Banana Republic: Please make five more versions of this dress so I can buy them all. Thank you, Elizabeth



[J. Crew sweater, Some random polo from Marshall’s because finding a white polo shirt is like trying to find ice cream in the desert, J. Crew Factory shorts, Havaianas}

Today I will be dragging all the crap I have hoarding for years out of my garage and listing it on Craigslist, so this is my “Seriously? Thanks for telling me you’d be here at 10 AM and then not showing up and not emailing me, you asshole.” outfit.



16 Responses

  1. Love that Banana Republic t-shirt dress! Here is what I do with the clothes that require ironing: I put them on hangers in the guest room closet so they are not mixed in with the other clothes. Ideally, once a week (HA!), I iron everything that is in there. What actually happens is that they stay in there for a few weeks, and then it takes me an entire evening to get through the whole lot. But- I don’t iron every day and everything in my closet is ready to be worn. Also, I get a chance to clear off the DVR while I do it, and I don’t feel guilty for shutting myself in the bedroom since I am doing “chores.”

  2. I like that Garnet Hill skirt; to me, it’s perfect for a sitting-around-the-kiddie pool day. A solid color t-shirt or tank might look cute with it, maybe in black, with a long pendant necklace?

    As for the clothes you end up weeding out, I have had great luck taking mine to a local consignment shop. I end up getting $5-$10 for each piece that sells, and if I use my credit in the store (instead of getting the sale money back in cash) they give me 10% off what I buy. I end up feeling like I got to go shopping for free, which is the best kind of shopping.

  3. thanks for the tip, I just bought 2 pairs of the Jcrew bermudas. i really like some of the knit dresses from Boden, i have one and really really like it. FYI their sizes run big.

  4. I am loving your hair pinned back from your face in the Red Tippi Sweater picture. Very cute.

    I love skirts, but I swear by dresses for the exact reason you mentioned: it’s easy to throw one on and be done with it. Dresses make my mornings infinitely easier.

    Off to now eyeball those 10″ shorts at J. Crew.

  5. ironing problem (take this with a grain of salt, as I have ironed nothing in the past fifteen years): buy a steamer?

    I am also sort of off the skirts for the same reason. I have a few but don’t wear them often. Actually, inspired by you and your “tuck it in” post a while back I have started wearing them more often, but I feel like I get a more flattering look from dresses.

    • People whose opinions I trust often recommend steamers for just the type of ironing you describe! Plus they don’t take up as much space as an ironing board standing up so it could live in a corner somewhere.

  6. There are so many good things here. I’m loving that navy with the peach, and also the striped dress with the yellow cardigan. And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to stalk the BR page for a 40% code so I can order that striped t shirt dress.

  7. Ok, they may not have it anymore, but if you have a BR outlet near you, I got the most adorable little green skirt there during the last friends & family event. It’s a straight cotton skirt in bright beautiful kelly green. Worth a shot if you have one nearby.

    Also, I never iron. I should, but I don’t. I cheat and do the “throw it in the dryer w/a damp towel for 10 minutes” thing, unless it’s a delicate fabric. That being said, I’m really contemplating a steamer, because everyone I know who has one raves about it.

  8. For ironing, you might consider an ironing board that hangs over the back of a door – it’s not quite as long as a regular ironing board but it folds up flat against the door when you’re not using it. I’ve had mine for 15+ years and I got it at (where else) Target.

    I love love love that sexy pants skirt!! So cute. Also, I wonder if the poofy skirts aren’t doing it for you any more because you’ve lost quite a bit of weight since last summer.

    • I love dresses for the summer but I am on the ground / floor doing stuff with my kids all day, how do you avoid crotch shots? I haven’t figured that out yet.

  9. This is the only true green skirt I’ve seen recently (LOFT: http://bit.ly/16TrMAL) but green is making a pretty strong statement in a lot of window displays so I think you’ll get some more options in the next couple months.

    Another thought for the clothes you are getting rid of- check and see if there is a local women’s shelter that takes donations. If they don’t take items, they might be able to recommend a community thrift shop that uses the proceeds to benefit the area.

  10. I iron everything before it goes in the closet. I have a hanging bar in my laundry room and that is where the “needs to be ironed” clothes go. When it gets to full to walk past (hah!) I iron it all in one marathon session, usually while watching a marathon session on tv.

    As for clothes I no,infer want, I just donate to goodwill. It’s easy and painless and I get a tax deduction!

  11. I am sending you two dresses and a tank once I can finally get to the effing post office. (One is gray, one has lots of green and blue on it and is super flattering and truthfully, I am kind of pissed off it no longer fits.)

    I am keeping the slide-y AE crops forever since I talked the salesperson into giving me a good discount even though the 40% sale was over, so they are a win. A win I hope did not get that poor high school girl fired.

  12. So, not that you really care, but I’m so bitter that you’re talking about “summer wardrobe” when there is f****** snow on the ground outside my window. I really want to put my down coat away for the season, but it’s just so cold! 😦

  13. underwear with grips? Soma. I have lots

  14. Thanks for doing this. I have been trying to be more adult in my clothing choices (at least for leaving the house), and your site has introduced me to shops that I might not have seen otherwise. Furthermore, I might not have tried them if I HAD seen them. I wore the GH skirt with a heather orange t-shirt and colorful thong sandals last night with a long colorful necklace and received a lot of compliments. Just a thought for you!

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