Something Bright

Chambray shirt - Gap; skirt - Old Navy; lace up boots - thrifted; necklace - Kohl's; tights - DKNY via Marshall's
It appears I've developed a sort of formula for getting dressed, one that I can fall back on when I have 5 minutes before I have to leave for class and am standing in front of my closet in a pathetic, blank, decaffeinated stupor mumbling to myself: "What do I wear?" Sometimes my roommate is there to remind me that I have a million clothes and that I'm stupidly over-thinking things and to hurry up or I'm going to be late again and probably miss the attendance sheet. Pick out a skirt, add a button down, choose weather appropriate leg wear and shoes, then I'm good to go. When I picked up this shirt last winter I didn't even consider how versatile it would be, but it's currently my favorite thing to wear when I run out of ideas.

I also won't deny being very much inspired by this outfit. What better way to ground a hot pink skirt than with a men's-inspired button down? She nailed it. I've also paired this skirt with my beige silk blouse as a similar interpretation, and I've very seriously considering going all-out bright and pairing it with this neon yellow sweater. This outfit was also a big hit with customers at work but I think that all of the Christmas music playing in our store was just inducing a bit of holiday season giddiness. If I didn't like my job so much I'd probably be complaining a lot more about how tired my feet are and how I had to clock in at 6 in the morning to help feed the shopping frenzy. Our store also finally received a set of radios with little microphones and earpieces, which on one hand makes me feel like I'm a secret agent who's part of a covert operation and who holds entire conversations in ten-code. On the other hand I'm still getting used to hearing little voices in only one ear, so sometimes I forget to hold the button on the microphone and I end up just talking into the air. I'll get the hang of it eventually.



scarf $6, dress $30 - H&M; tights - Hue; boots - Bass
I can't seem to detach myself from this scarf. Each day I wear it I discover one more of its many uses, some of which include an impromptu hood to protect myself from a sudden shower, or as a shawl to tuck my hair into as a guard from winds that threaten to mess it up. This particular scarf only comes in neutral shades, so over the break I'm going to crochet one for myself in a more vibrant hue, like a bright royal blue.

I wore this on the train home Tuesday afternoon and I was reminded just exactly why I prefer this coat over the several others I own. The length is flush with the hem of most of my dresses, which not only keeps me warmer, but it prevents my skirts from being blown up! It appears that the wind blowing off of the Schuylkill is my greatest enemy as of late and I've had to take care to plan my outfits around it. Last week I even wore pants every day (and everyone I knew had something to say about it!).

So I'm currently wrapped up in a blanket in front of the fireplace, just waiting for this rain to pass. Tomorrow I'll be celebrating Thanksgiving with a bunch of relatives over dinner, and then I'm up bright and early to work on Black Friday. I have work all weekend, followed by one week of regular classes, four days of final exams, and then Winter break! Best wishes to everyone celebrating this holiday weekend!


Fall Into Place

Lace and chiffon dress (gift) - American Apparel; sandals $7 - Payless; vintage Liz Claiborne belt - mom; green satchel - Urban Outfitters
Can you even believe that about one month ago it was warm enough to wear sandals? I can't, not one bit. I remember walking over to the Penn museum with my friend Shannon and having to take off my scarf because we were so warm in the sun. Where did fall go? What happened to that lovely intermediate period where the sun sets at a reasonable 6 o'clock, where the leaves are a bit golden, and where a leather jacket is just right?

I made the mistake this morning of leaving my dorm wearing just a motorcycle jacket over a sleeveless dress and I was chilled to the bone. I'm currently recuperating, scolding myself on my lack of better judgement and sipping on a hot mug of coffee (with whipped cream!). I'm also working up the nerve to actually show up at my hair appointment tomorrow. I've been trying to grow out my hair for years, but it's clearly not making any progress, and at this point it just doesn't do what I want it to. I'm thinking of completely reshaping it, which admittedly is something I haven't done for years, and I'm bringing with me this photo as a reference. I just have to keep reminding myself that a bad haircut isn't the end of the world, and that there are more pressing matters that deserve my attention, like my Art History paper revisions that are due tomorrow. Speaking of...


Reconstruct Moments Lost in Time

"The challenge of archaeology is to reconstruct lost moments in time."

On Saturday I ventured over to the Penn Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology to meet my Architecture & Society classmates as our professor gave us a guided tour. I've heard it referred to as one of University City's best-kept secrets; perhaps in comparison to the art museum it's not much of a tourist attraction. I had been to the museum recently, on a quiet Sunday back in early October, and this trip reminded me to go back and edit all of the photos I had forgotten about.

We started in the first Egyptian room, which, according to my professor, is home to the third largest sphinx that has ever been excavated. A bit of wandering brought us to the museum's collection of Mesopotamian artifacts, understandably one of the largest collections in the world, seeing as the University of Pennsylvania made up half of the archaeological team that excavated the ruins of Ur. 

What I found to be most moving, perhaps because I simply wasn't expecting it, was the "Excavating Ground Zero" installation. I had forgotten that ten years have passed, and perhaps such a milestone warrants a bit of reflection. A timeline of the events that took place that day alternated with back-lit panels that displayed quotations from the likes of Colin Powell and Tony Blair. Shards of broken glass were illuminated in two glass towers. One case held a pair of crushed eyeglasses, another displayed an office keyboard warped beyond recognition. What I found most heartbreaking was a wall covered in individual memoirs. Most of them seemed to written by mere children. No one spoke, we all assumed a kind of reverent silence. When I went back this weekend the exhibit had closed, though I was curious to see if any more paper had been posted to the wall.

Speaking of Architecture, I should probably get to work on my study guide. How did it become Week 9 already? I feel as though fall has passed me by.


DIY Inspiration

A fringe necklace seems like a perfectly simple DIY. This tutorial demonstrates exactly how I would have done it!

(via The Sartorialist)
I've been busy with midterm projects, but as soon as I get the chance next week I'll be sure to pick up some suede (or faux suede) to get my elbow pad projects started.

This beaded collar from Free People is stunning, isn't it? Absolutely out of my price range, yes, but I'm confident I could find some way to recreate it.

Urban Outfitters
A brightly colored thrift store skirt would be the perfect candidate for an asymmetrical hem DIY. What I like most about these skirts is that you can wear them any which way, with the shorter hem in the front or off to the side.

I've never been more excited for Thanksgiving break. Some time off from school and a couple creative projects is just what I need. I know for a fact I'll be working on Black Friday (eep!), so at least I know it will be a productive break. I hope everyone else's holiday goes just as well!



Dress and scarf - H&M
I've essentially been living in this gray knit scarf.  It's draped and cozy, perfect for shielding myself from the bitter gusts of wind that barrel through the streets on campus. To walk down Market Street one must face the blasts of Mother Nature head on. Sometimes I feel like I'm caught in the middle of an action sequence straight out of a science fiction program, where the air locks on the space ship have begun to malfunction and the dark vacuum of space is threatening to suck all of the passengers out into the abyss. Did I mention that I'm hooked on Doctor Who? I've watched 3 series in about a week and half's time. Sometimes, for only a second or two, I'll swear I hear the TARDIS engine outside of my window. But perhaps that's just my imagination and lack of sleep getting the best of me.