Back To School Night, year 11

I always wear a dress on back to school night. I wore the same one three years in a row, and It was about to be four, but then I spied my blue COS coat/dress thing in my closet. I was convinced I’d get a lot of wears out of this thing – and this outfit was just wear number 2. I’ve really been trying to buy less this past year, and buy more mindfully. But I’ve failed, as evidenced by this blue coat I bought back 9 months ago and have worn exactly twice. I do still like it a lot, I just need to figure out more ways to style it, as its quite the bright statement. I need to get as much use out of it as possible while this weather lasts. Once winter hits, I’ll be living in my Arc’teryx Atom forever.

The sandals on the other hand, have gotten many, many wears over the years (since 2012), and will be a staple in my closet for years to come. They give just enough “fancy” to elevate a simple t-shirt dress into something appropriate to meet parents in.

On that note, I really need to work on my Back to School Night game. I’m terrible at meeting parents. I’m not the best at small talk in general, and I always feel socially awkward around adults. My prepared speeches always disappoint, I get thrown when I get told kids names as if I only have one Jessica, and my words always come out fast, shaky, nervous, insecure, and therefore curt sounding. I always end up with at least one angry parent. This year, I had one parent say, “That’s it?!?” at the end of my intro/welcome to my class talk. Sigh. You’d think I’d have this all figured out by my 11th year, but nope. Every year I get more and more involved parents who want to know things – I just don’t know what it is they want to know! Who has a Ted talk on giving good Back to School Ted talks? I need to watch it.

coat: cos – dress: uniqlo – belt: jcrew – sandals: madewell – earrings: sara boeck – watch: fitbit

Over Analysis: Levi’s Ribcage Jeans

Welcome to a new series on this blog: the Over Analysis.  I spend way too much time going over small ridiculous details about clothes, skincare, makeup, anything else most people consider shallow. This series is about as deep as a puddle.

I love high wasted jeans.  They help balance out my long torso-short legs proportions. So when Levis came out with their new Ribcage Jeans, I immediately had high hopes.  I have a few of their wedgie fit jeans already, so I figured these would just be just as good, if not better.  Well, they are, and they aren’t.

First of all, they don’t stretch, at all.  I like that a lot about these old school Levis styles and that is one of the reasons why I buy them. The thickness of the denim really holds everything in and creates a very streamlined look that I love (just check it out on the model). The problem is that I’ve put on a few extra pounds (kilos) this past winter, and they’re really, really, tight now.  If the denim had a bit of stretch, it would be no big deal.  These on the other hand with a 12″ rise are very unforgiving and will jam into your waistline like no other after a large meal. No food babies allowed, and no seconds at dinner especially when sidelined from anything active due to a shoulder injury.  The only thing that keeps me from feeling like a stuffed sausage is the wide leg, which brings us to the next thing.

The legs are a bit too wide for my liking, and they make me feel like I’m veering into Jnco Jeans territory. I know I’m totally exaggerating here, but I’m really used to my skinny jeans, and straight leg cuts are as wide as I feel comfortable.  These I feel like go a bit too straight/wide, making me look a bit stumpy (admittedly, I’m 5’11” so it must be all in my head).

Now on to the good stuff, things I love about these jeans and why I decided to keep them and wear them.

They don’t stretch. I know, I know, I just complained about that in a lengthy rant above.  But the fact that they’re 100% cotton means you can wear them over and over and they will never bag in the butt or the knees. Saving water FTW! They will never pull/stretch out of shape or get premature holes in the back pockets if you’re a back pocket key stasher like I am. 

I love the color and the lack of distressing or whiskers. I’ve been wanting a pair of plain classic blue jeans for a while now, and these fit the bill perfectly.  I’m a bit over the distressed look and really over the whiskering in the crotch area. They’re like runways pointing straight at the reproductive bits and I just don’t want that kind of attention while I’m teaching physics. These jeans are tight AF right now though so they’re pulling at the hips weirdly and making whisker like folds, so…at this very moment I’m reconsidering wearing these again till I can properly get back to my usual F = ma. Anyways, I get a bit of a 50’s vibe from these jeans, which I love. 

Lastly, these jeans are made of selvedge denim.  I’m not sure what that means, but I think it has something to do with the edging of the fabric.  Other than the white piping on the inside seam, I honestly can’t tell the difference between selvedge denim and regular denim. I guess they’ll never unravel!

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cardigan and shirt: madewell – jeans: levis – shoes: sven – watch: fitbit

Don’t Call It a Comeback

I heard the old school LL Cool J’s song “Mama Said Knock You Out” the other night and it inspired me to pick up my blog again.

Don’t call it a comeback
I’ve been here for years
I’m rocking my peers
Puttin’ suckers in fear

I initially stopped blogging for a couple reasons – I fell into a style rut, I started working out regularly straight after school (time when I’d usually spend blogging), and I felt like I had run out of things to say. I found that I wanted to spend more time outside and unglued from the computer, and I’m generally an introvert. I like to observe more than I like to speak, which I know seems counter intuitive considering my chosen profession.

It’s been over a year since my last post, but I’ve been here this whole time, still teaching, and still putting clothes on my body every morning. I still fall into ruts where I wear the same thing or similar things over and over, but I’ve also had weeks were I’ve been super inspired by a look or an aesthetic that I see on someone else or on the interwebs. Sometimes I look back at my old posts and cringe a bit at how I used to style myself, and other times I get super reflective about how my style has changed over the years. If there is one cool thing about having a fashion blog, it’s the record keeping I have of what I’ve worn over the past 6 years.

I’m still getting regular comments from kids about my sartorial choices, which always makes me miss blogging a bit. Recently, I’ve been fielding an abnormal number of questions from kids about my fashion choices. They range from “where do you go shopping miss” to “Hey miss, nice fit” to “what the ___ are you wearing miss”.  The most memorable comment this past year has been when I wore an Iron Maiden shirt to school at the start of the school year, and a student asked me if I knew the name of the album that was on my shirt. I didn’t, and the kid roasted me a bit for being a poseur. This kid is now one of my favorite humans.

So I’m back! Here is what I wore on Monday. I’m sticking to more and more basic items lately. I figure the less color there is, the easier it is to look put together but still effortless (I hate how overused that word is, but I can’t seem to think of a less cliche way to describe my sentiment). The printed boots and earrings make me feel like I have a bit more oompf to an otherwise plain outfit.

That being said, to me the star of this outfit is the blue shirt/coat/dress thing I picked up last December from COS. I liken it to a french chore coat, and I like it because it gives me a bit of a Bill Cunningham vibe without having the real thing. B says it looks weird, but I love it anyway and that’s what counts right? Chore coats are trending pretty hard right now, everybody from J. Crew to Huckberry (really cool men’s versions!) are carrying one now, and I can’t blame them.  I kind of want a real one in addition to this long wannabe one. I’ve been eyeing ones from Urban OutfittersEverlane and Stussy (I love the bone white color) and Topo Designs but really I am holding out to get one from Carhartt WIP.  I love the 4 front pockets and you really can’t go wrong with the durability of the real thing (work clothes that is) even if you’re just getting it for the fashion. I can’t wait to check out the store in NYC when I go this summer.

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earrings: unbranded, but picked up from a small shop in nashville over spring break – jacket: cos – tshirt: jockey via costco – belt: gap from more than 10 years ago – jeans: uniqlo – boots: madewell

 

 

A Mild December

One week ’till Winter break!  It’s been surreal though – we’re quickly approaching fall final exams, and it’s still 63˚F outside. It’s been a mild December. I’m still fall dressing, and my winter boots are still stored away. Except for that one freak weekend near the end of November, Denver has been darn pleasant! It’s still “no-socks” weather, so I’ve been wearing the crap out of these leopard print slides and cropped jeans. To winter-ize, I painted my nails last night with a holiday theme using nail art pens that B bought me years ago for Christmas. Also, I’ve been digging my new coffee thermos B bought me for a recent Sinterklaas party our Dutch/American friends hosted. It’s kind of the best coffee thermos ever, and if there is ever a stereotype about teachers, it’s that they drink a lot of coffee. I am one of those people.

These jeans are a new purchase from black friday when Urban Outfitters was having a buy one get one half off promotion. They are worth every penny though, because I’ve been wearing them over and over. I usually wear my denim about 3-4 times in between washes, and these are thick without stretch. So they hold up really well wear after wear without getting too baggy in the knees or the bum. Also, I’ve been digging looser fitting jeans with straight leg cuts lately. Maybe it’s getting older, or maybe it’s the changing denim trend, but I’m slowly getting off the skinny jeans train. Maybe this cut isn’t the most flattering or curve hugging, but I love the high waist (long torso/short leg strategy) and the little flare at the hem. My only complaint about these jeans is that they can cause a bit of cowboy crotch, and that they are just a tad bit too cropped. Either way, I’ve decided I’m over being weird about the crotch region with my pants. It’s just how my body is built, and its ridiculous to expect anything else.

THLT kent cardigan

THLT madewell kent cardigan

THLT Zojirushi coffee mug

THLT BDG kick flare jeans

THLT madewell cardigan

THLT HEMA soft matt lip balm

THLT urban outfitters kick flare jeans

cardigan: madewell – jeans – bdg – tshirt: f21 – belt: gap – shoes: banana republic – lipstick: hema (purchased in paris) – thermos: zojirushi

Spring Sprung

These photos are from last week.  I broke my shopping ban in Toronto over spring break and picked up a second pair of Blundies.  Seriously, I need another pair of Blundstones like I need a hole in my head.  But these are black, and the pair I already have are brown. That is my thought process here, I’m not even kidding. But ALSO, they were cheaper because I was in Canada, another Commonwealth country, and I have more buying power with the current exchange rate. Justification of a ridiculous purchase! All jokes aside though, these boots will last me literally forever. One woman I know has had her Blundies since college, and I’m pretty sure she’s at least a little bit older than me.  This means my Blundies will last untill I’m dead. Just like this dress from 2012, this sweater from 2015, and this scarf from 2013.

On the school front, there are only 4 (or 5, depending on the positivity of the person) weeks till school is out!  Our kids have been testing these past 2 weeks, and the teachers have been feeling the testing fatigue. Testing at our school means 100 min blocks, all day every day for 2 weeks. I love my kids, but these blocks have felt extra long these days. I have also been planning these class blocks packed with super relaxing and chill activities such as annotating scientific texts, structured discussions/debates, argumentative writing, and synthesis.

It’s funny – every year I think I’m sooooo done, I’m just going to show movies for the rest of the year! But then a super interesting topic comes around and bam, I spend heaps of time really working to develop their thinking skills.  This year, they will be studying the potential future US/Mexico border wall, but through the lens of the ecological impacts a large physical barrier would create. These past 2 weeks I’ve been busy working on the build up – not even the juicy part! We’re still just working on learning ecological relationships (trophic levels, disruptions in food webs, etc), and I got evaluated this past Tuesday.  Ugh.  My lesson was pretty good – I had spent hours working on it myself and elicited the eyes of no less than 4 other people, which means it was “effective”. Evaluations really have a way of feeling punitive as opposed to a learning experience. It’s to the point where I have been trained to just be thankful that I’m “effective”. SAD!

THLT blundstones

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THLT blundstones3

THLT blundstones2

glasses: warby parker – scarf: topman – cardigan: madewell – dress: gap – leggings: target – boots: blundstone 510

Miss! Are You Wearing Makeup?!

I started this post about 2 weeks ago, and then promptly forgot about it.  So here it is…2 weeks later!

This past Tuesday, I wore makeup to school – like I do every day. On this day, however, it was a big deal to 3rd period. The “Do-Now” conversation turned into “Miss! Are you wearing makeup today?” “Miss! do you have a date tonight, is that why?” and “Miss! you look pretty.”  Thanks for the ego boost kids!

The truth is, I wear makeup every day, but that morning, I decided to add bit bit of eye liner – one extra step that I don’t normally do. My everyday morning routine consists of hitting the snooze about 4 times, dragging myself out of bed to brush the teeth, wash the face, moisturize said face with SPF, and get dressed. Once those things are done, it’s makeup time. I slap on a light skin base of some sort, stave off the inevitable oily sheen with some powder, run some brown goop over the brows, and dab some life in the form of blush onto my cheeks. Then I head downstairs to pour about 32 fl. oz. of coffee into travel thermoses (I set the coffee maker the night before), grab a snack bar for lunch and head out the door.  20 min later I’m on my way in to school.

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sweater: j.crew – blouse: madewell – jeans: j.brand – boots: h&m – belt: banana republic – everything old and not currently in stores

Spring Forward

I’m already looking ahead to Spring, and it’s not even really here yet.  B and I started plannning our new and expanded #discoverygarden in the middle of February, with snow actively falling.  In the fall, B and I broke up our front yard (old dead lawn) and right-of-way to make room for more garden space. We’ve now tripled our previous garden square footage! I can’t wait for when we can finally plant at the end of April and the start of May.

The weather here in Denver is still frigid though, so I’m still dressing the part with dark colors and wool. The bright late 2000’s J.Crew style lipstick is still going strong, today with Nars ‘Funny Face’.  I’m also still on my shopping ban though, so everything here is old or a hand me down from my sister. I did break my shopping ban to back this kickstarter project though – It was just too good to pass up!