Navy Blue Thrifted DVF Dress

I lucked out recently when I spotted this Diane von Furstenberg dress at a thrift store. It’s not her signature wrap style, so I think it went unnoticed by staff and customers. Nonetheless, it’s a pretty dress, with asymmetrical front seams and a bow at the collar. It’s not too frilly or girly, which is nice. I’m not a big fan of over-the-top ruffles–and least on me.

DVF dress

Dress: Diane von Furstenberg
Tights: Target
Shoes: Poetic Licence
Cuff: Shop in Issaquah, WA

Navy will go with about anything, but I had to try it with muted purple tights. The same purple tights, in fact, that I wrote about for my latest New Year’s post. This time, I also matched my tights (always elongating) with my shoes–velvet and sparkly peep-toe heels. A little girly is fine, right?

navy and purple

So this outfit is actually the same as my New Year’s one, with one simple swap. I traded my jumpsuit for a dress to change things up completely.

sparkly shoes and muted tights

I wore this to a double-date dinner with hubby and a couple of friends. It’s looking spring-like, but nights are still cool so I appreciated the sleeves and tights. The 3/4 sleeves let me show off my “diamond” cuff. Well, it looks luxe. But at $10 I’m guessing it’s not diamond.

diamond cuff with blue dress

I’ve joined Life of the Party and Passion for Fashion. See what everyone else is wearing!


Filed under Fashion, Thrifty

Leopard in the Olive Garden

I referenced my olive jeans in the title of this post and my mind kept reading “olive garden.” I changed the title so it included “leopard” instead and it sounded like there was a leopard in the garden. I give up. I’ll embrace the humor!

Spring is almost here. I can taste it. Usually, the only hints are rain, rain, and more rain, but a bit of warmth from the sun never hurts.

leopard top with red belt

Top: Old Navy
Jeans: Just USA
Boots: Novacas
Belt: Couch Guitar
Watch: Timex
Bracelets: Various shops
Purse: Crystalyn Kae

I’m always one to cover up with sunscreen but after so much gray, I was happy for a few rays. A little Vitamin D is good this time of year.

olive skinnies

I took advantage of the sun and warmth to have a look around my garden. It’s going to need a lot of work, but surprisingly, a lot of things live throughout the winter. And many flowers will start blooming on their own. I’ll fill in whatever’s missing with plants from the nursery.

in the garden

This isn’t a gardening outfit, but it worked just fine for a peek at the garden for a pre-spring assessment. I’ve worn this shirt with red pants before, so I knew a red belt would work. I wore my olive skinnies because I love olive and red and because the olive was another neutral to balance out the top. The boots pull in shades from my top too.

neutrals and red

An arm party is a fun way to accessorize. I wore my Timex and threw in a few stretchy beaded bracelets in colors that matched my outfit.

watch and bracelets

I’m joining Monday Bloom today. See what everyone else is wearing.


Filed under Fashion

Head to Toe Gray

Today I’m wearing gray. Usually I like wearing color to contrast the gray Seattle winter but I don’t mind blending in sometimes. Call it camouflage for the Pacific Northwest.

hat, boots, jeans

Hat: Forever 21
Sweater: Wet Seal
JeansSonas Denim
Flannel boots: Groupon

Every winter wardrobe needs a beanie (or toque, as we call them in Canada). I usually wear one to keep warm, but it’s a fun fashion item too. I ditched my jacket to show off the velvet skull on my shirt.

skull shirt

My jeans are from Sonas Denim and I got them as part of a Kickstarter campaign. Sonas was raising funds for their new line so in exchange for a donation, I got these. Sonas is a vegan-run company intent on keeping their environmental footprint small. They recycle everything (even scraps of denim), give 10% of profits to animal welfare groups, and have plans to fund an animal sanctuary.

Sonas Denim

When I contributed to the Kickstarter, I got to communicate with the founder himself, Gerry Kelly. I can’t say that happens very often!

all gray outfit

I love my Sonas (I bought a second pair in black waxed cotton for a dressier, almost leather-look) so even on a gray, day, I’m happy–which is what Sonas means in Gaelic!

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Stripes and Khaki

Here’s a blast from the not-so-distant past. A striped, floral and khaki number I wore in the fall and never added to the blog.

stripes and khaki

Top: Marshall’s
Pants/belt: Macy’s
Shoes: Payless
Scarf: Shop in Portland

I’m looking for spring outfit ideas and this will work now, just like it worked in October. In fact, in Seattle, it works about nine months of the year. There’s only a few months in winter when open toes are too chilly for me. Even in summer, a light 3/4-length top and loose pants are fine, especially in the evening. Only the red leaves on the tree date these pictures.

floral scarf

I squeezed in a bit of pattern mixing with my floral scarf, and the red in the scarf picks up the color of my shoes. These shoes are so comfortable! The platform means the heels isn’t as high as it looks, and the pleather is soft and not at all sweaty.

khaki pants

I’ve worn these pants a lot! Definitely got my eleven dollar’s worth. They were on sale in the junior’s department and even came with the belt. I wanted a loose, casual look so I went up two sizes.

fall to spring look

My grass is still green–we’ve had rain and only two days’ of snow this winter–but my herb garden is asleep. I can’t wait until spring so I can cook with freshly picked chives, parsley, basil and rosemary!

What parts of spring are you looking forward to?


Filed under Fashion, Thrifty

My Vaute Couture Traveler Coat

It’s rare that I double down on shopping, but when my Vaute Couture Emily coat arrived in mail a couple of months ago, I tried it on, fell in love, and jumped on Vaute’s site so I could buy the other coat I’d been eying: The Traveler.

Vaute Traveler coat

Coat: Vaute Couture
Skirt: Thrifted
Tights: Target
Boots: Cri de Coeur

I was initially drawn to the color of this coat (dolphin), and the great tagua nut buttons. I also knew that this was the type of coat I’d wear a lot in Seattle (not too warm, not too bulky, but cozy enough to protect me from chilly weather).

dolphin coat

The Traveler is made in NYC from recycled materials, and it’s vegan. No down or wool in this baby!

pink and blue

Top: Express
Cuff: Swapped
Necklace: Fremont Sunday Market

What better to go with my new coat than my Cri de Coeur booties! These are leather free, fair trade, and I adore the subtle sheen. The soft gray shade goes with everything too.

outfit details

To offset my investment pieces, I wore a top from the Express sale rack and a skirt I found at a thrift shop.

high and low

You can almost make out the new tattoo I have on my calf in this last picture. I’ll save the big reveal until after the color is added.


Filed under Ethical, Fashion, Thrifty

Studio Museum in Harlem

One of the first things I did when I went to NYC last summer was head to West 125th Street to the Studio Museum in Harlem.

The museum is a contemporary art gallery focusing on African-American works. It offers an artist-in-residence program too, so it not only reflects and showcases art in the community (and for the community) but it gives artists a space to practice their craft.

In addition to an impressive permanent collection, there is a constant rotation of exhibits. Here’s what I saw.

Robert Pruitt’s exhibit Women featured a collection of large-scale conté-on-butcher-paper drawings of women. There are pop culture and political themes in the work, which feature models of women in Pruitt’s life. They’re embellished with gold leaf.

wall of Robert Pruitt's drawings

Robert Pruitt framed drawings

Robert Pruitt woman

Robert Pruitt drawing

I saw a high school photography exhibit featuring wonderful snippets of student life, from family and home scenarios to perspectives on high fashion. Here are just a couple of the 30 or so images from the collection.

I enjoyed Jennifer Packer’s work, which was varied in theme but related in its textures and painterly-ness.

Eric by Jennifer Packer

Jennifer Packer

Cullen Washington Jr.’s Untitled (Mondrian #6) echoes the geometric aspects of Piet Mondrian, only Washington’s are created entirely with found materials.

Jennifer Packer

Another geometric piece was nearby, this one by Steffani Jemison.

steffani jemison

Shooting without a flash indoors is limiting, but I did capture a few other pieces, including these from the Body Language exhibit.

The Studio Museum is a gem and I highly recommend visiting if you’re ever uptown.

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Color-blocked Eco Dress

When I went to Snohomish, WA a few months ago, hubby and I wandered the old town, grabbed drinks, and window shopped. My window shopping turned into the real deal when I found the Natural Clothing Company.

The store features a diverse range of styles and sizes (men’s and kids’ stuff too) with a common theme: organic, chemical-free clothing. The footprint of making the clothes is smaller, and the clothes themselves are healthier to wear. Not everything is vegan (wool was among the natural fibers), but I found lots of great pieces in cotton, hemp, linen, bamboo and even soy!

tricolor dress

Dress: Natural Clothing Company
Pleather boots: MIA
Cardigan: Thrifted
Necklace: Shop in Ft. Lauderdale

As usual, I thought I’d just “try on” this wonderful organic cotton dress, but it fit so well and was really comfortable. It’s lined and has pockets! So I did the economy a favor and picked it up.

dress with red sash

I love the pop of red the sash provides, and the three neutrals give me lots of options for shoes and accessories. If I turn from left to right, you’ll think it’s a completely different dress!

dress and boots

If you’re ever meandering through Snohomish (it’s the type of town that you really need to meander through), take in the sights, grab a bite to eat, and check out the Natural Clothing Company. If you don’t get to Snohomish, don’t worry–they have an online shop too!

I’ve joined Lena B Actually and Rachel the Hat for Passion for Fashion. Check out what they (and everyone else) is wearing!

organic dress

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Filed under Ethical, Fashion, Healthy Living

An Owl Sweater is a Real Hoot

When I bought my fox sweater, I also picked up this owl sweater. It’s just so cute! The fox has glasses and this guy has a bow tie. Aww.

owl sweater

Sweater: Old Navy
Skirt: Forever 21
Tights: Roots Canada
Booties: Old Navy
Ring: Roberta Oakes

I will be able to wear this with everything but, creature of habit that I am, I wore it with a pencil skirt–just like I did the first time I wore my fox sweater.

pencil skirt

The main differences between the two looks is that this time I have on tights and short boots. Last time I had bare legs and knee-high boots. Color combos and accessories really change things up so I don’t think anyone noticed that I was repeating a “formula.”

gray and blue

I’m a big fan of pencil skirts now. I wasn’t when I’d only had experiences with stiff, uncomfortable ones. But these stretchy skirts are great! I like how I can wear them high-waisted as a mini or on my hips for a knee-length option.

sweater and skirt

I’m joining Fashion Informant, Elizabeth Nygard, and Passion for Fashion for Friday Linkups. See what everyone else is wearing!


Filed under Fashion, Thrifty

Blue Camo and a Classic White Shirt

I joined the Navy. Old Navy!

blue camo

Shirt: Old Navy
Pants: Old Navy
Belt: Couch Guitar Straps
Shoes: Soda

Until this pair of pants arrived from, I had zero camouflage in my closet. Or maybe I did. Maybe it was just so good at being camo that I couldn’t see it!

I like the unexpected color of these pants. (Well, blue camo is worn in the Navy, I think of the olive/khaki color combo when I think of camo.)

red white and blue

Camo reminds me of hunting, and hunting makes me sad, so I’ve steered clear of this pattern. But the blue camo seemed like a nice variation.

I’ve since seen professional wildlife photographers wearing camo (they even have camo cameras) so if I do get some green camo clothing, I’ll pretend I’m on assignment with National Geographic. Seems reasonable, right?

classic white shirt

And to offset the military vibe, I’m wearing a belt made of vinyl from a VW Bug. You can’t get more hippy than a Bug!

For once, I’m actually wearing a “classic white shirt.” For years I went without this wardrobe staple because I thought it would get dirty and wrinkled (and it probably will). Nevertheless, I’m glad to have a timeless item.

casual look with black wedges

I’m joining Style SessionsVisible Monday and Monday Bloom today. See what everyone else is wearing!


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Ten Years of Roller Derby

This year is the 10th anniversary of the Rat City Rollergirls, Seattle’s roller derby team. I can’t believe it’s been a decade. I was a founding member and it seems like yesterday.

It all started in 2004, when my friend Lilly asked a group of her friends (myself included) if we wanted to start a roller derby league with her. She’d fallen in love with the sport after watching the Texas Rollergirls play in Austin.

Meeting One was between Hurricane Lilly and two of her friends, Rae’s Hell and Dixie Dragstrip. Meeting Two expanded to seven. I remember meeting in a living room and planning what would become part of the fabric of Seattle–although we had no idea at the time.

founding members

We researched locations, looked into things like insurance and marketing, and planned fundraisers, media strategies and recruiting events. The league needed uniforms, coaches, managers, players–everything! It was almost a full-time job, and we all had jobs!

We were engineers, writers, developers, baristas, managers, you name it. We combined our skills and passion and built up the league from humble beginnings in a rink in White Center to Key Arena! I never played at the Key though. I played at the hangars at Magnusson in front of 1500 screaming fans, but after season one, I retired.

I’m Jean of all Trades, and I didn’t have the commitment to devote to one thing. I was busy with motorcycles, art, animal rights, and I had a boyfriend and friends to fit into the mix (not to mention a new job).

skates and helmet

But I’ll always remember the year and a half that I was Lady Die #83. I met powerful women, made great friends, and reached a level of athleticism I didn’t know I had.

Lady Die 83

I’d highly recommend catching a bout and celebrating season ten. Roller derby has exploded onto the scene in the last decade and there are other leagues in Washington State, the country, and all over the world. There’s probably one near you. If you go to a Rat City bout, you’ve got to cheer for Grave Danger, my former team.

grave danger season one

(starting back row, left to right) Edie Brickwall, Daisy Mayhem, PamOpticon, Lil’ Hateful, Sake Bomb, Bruise Lee, Lisa Lawless, Rettig to Rumble, Lady Die, Darcy Rant, Tashya Round, Ann Munition, Jinx (Photo by Lilly Warner)


Filed under Events, General