11.14.2014

GET ME DRESSED / CAPSULE 02 : VARIATIONS ON A THEME



Hey happy Friday! So here's what I'm wearing these days.

My capsule has suddenly turned very school girl-ish on me. I feel like an off-duty Hogwarts student a lot of the time. It could be the particular botch of my self-botched haircut, or the fact that I seem to have this perma-twelve face . . .  or it could be the fitted sweaters. After an entire summer of wearing oversized tees, I've been gravitating toward the fitted sweaters this season. They feel fresh and sweet.

A few readers + Instagram followers have been requesting that I do outfit posts more often this fall as I play around with this capsule idea. It makes me nervous. I don't consider myself a fashion plate by any means. Nor am I terribly symmetrical or natural-looking in photos. But, you know, some people sky dive, other people post pictures of themselves on the Internet. Who am I to judge? ;)

And so, in this post, three variations on a theme.
(If you read that in Ira Glass's voice, hey high five!)





I call it "The School Girl Theme." British, 50s Beatnik, and All American Girl Next Door, if we're choosing subheadings.





Taking outfit photos is really, really awkward for me still. Especially self-timer outfit photos when my four-year-old is looking at me funny.

So here's something I've been pondering. Is the point of a capsule to get you out of a rut? Or to better define your rut. Because I like my rut. It's cosy in here. Or maybe you try to utilize all 40 pieces by mixing and matching? You know, maximize all the style options inherent in each piece; be creative; keep things from getting boring. Personally, I haven't enjoyed any self-imposed pressure to get creative with the items I chose, and I don't know if that strategic aspect of a capsule is really for me. The limiting part is great, keeping a look simple and consistent has been really rewarding + has made me enjoy other parts of getting dressed so much more--jewelry, lipstick, shoooooooes. But the maximizing of the minimization, I don't know. That not so much.

I think what's fun about a capsule is seeing what parts of you come out of it suddenly making more sense to yourself. This whole deal has gotten me even more excited about the idea of a uniform, which is a whole other ball of lint and something I'm excited to hash out next. And it's made me rethink the fashion industry, too. You know, Coco, Anna, Karl Lagerfeld, Jenna Lyons, they all have looks. Those weirdo Olsen twins (I love those weirdo Olsen twins), there's not much of a variation there. They all work in fashion, creating clothes or promoting designers or analyzing trends and interpreting them for their own audiences, and yet, they don't really change their own overall looks much, if ever. They just sort of . . . tweak it. Variations on a theme. I suppose the more you're aware of the industry, the more you become aware of who all is making the kinds of clothes you like and how they're varying things subtly. This capsule exercise led me to appreciate my clothes on a micro level. The tiny details; the seaming, the darts, the fabric choice. It's made me think more about my mom's good friend Lisa, who is probably the most sophisticated woman I've ever known, and who owns approximately five million articles of clothing that are all completely identical: black, and drape-y. Every single one. So she literally looks exactly the same, every time I see her. She shops a lot. It is completely making sense to me now.


For instance, trench coats.



This is what I call my *starter trench.* I got it at Target a few years ago, it's made by Converse. It was thirty bucks, it came with a hood that was cute when it was up but silly and lifeless when it was down, so I snipped it out. I keep looking for another trench like this, but nicer. Better materials, lined maybe, maybe water resistant because this one is not and doesn't that negate the purpose of a trench coat? But I haven't found it yet. Many times if I'm in an area with good shops I'll swing into one, in my trench coat, to look at trench coats. The whole thing strikes me as rather indulgent and silly. I have a trench coat. But also, it is fascinating to compare all these slightly different trench coats against each other. The more trenches I try on, the more of the artistry and craft behind each design I'm able to appreciate, the more I start to understand about the fashion houses behind each design, and the more I start to understand about myself, and my relationship with my clothes.



So, uh, seen any good trench coats lately? I need a slim cut shoulder and a real good back vent. Longer than the knee, shorter than the shin. 

And now please enjoy my classy "Deep In Thought" pose. Doesn't it go nicely with the introspective theme of this post? By this point I was completely over this self-timer nonsense and Huck was getting really curious about things. Like, What are you doing, mom. This is weird. What are you looking at? So these were for his benefit. It was really funny. I don't know, I guess you had to be there.



The End.

32 comments :

  1. girl, stay in this rut. it's a good theme.

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  2. The loafers are very Hermione Granger, I must say.

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  3. I love the crayons in the corner :).

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  4. I'm so on board with more outfit posts and introspection on this whole capsule concept! I'm so inspired to do one myself (after I lose this baby weight and feel like shopping again...). You are so stinkin cute btw :)

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    Replies
    1. Jennifer WoodNovember 14, 2014

      Why would you mention your baby weight? Don't you know Natalie is suffering from infertility? I'm sure you didn't mean it, but you're comment came off as very insensitive.

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    2. What a rude comment Jennifer. Why would you guilt someone over something so benign? I guess no one can mention the word "baby" again.

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  5. I love all these outfit posts. -Hanna Lei

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  6. I also need a good trench. My starter trench was on sale at Old Navy for maybe $15. It works for what it is, but the sleeves are an awkward length. A good trench coat is a beautiful thing.

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  7. This is the first time I've ever commented and it feels kind of silly, but I have to say: you have beautiful eyebrows!

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  8. I like London Fog trenchcoats. Affordable but nicer than Target!

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  9. you are so adorable. and your eyebrows, your eyebrows are so fantastic.

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  10. I love your outfit posts. Keep them comin' please :) Have you tried www.ayr.com for a trench coat? They have what looks to be a nice selection of essentials. Their clean chambray shirt and high rise skinny jeans are on my Christmas wish list *fingers crossed* :)

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  11. love your capsule. you are so lovely :)

    I'm running a "Naked pallet" giveaway, if you're interested, check this link:
    little taste of heaven

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  12. and you've managed to do a great job!

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  13. Color! I have to admit I like these looks way better than the hipster things over the summer. But that's just me. I love classic looks and generally hate anything too trendy. Anyway, this stuff looks great. I have a bunch of Zara trenches but they are rather disappointing in quality and on the more expensive side. One of these days I'm going to go for gold and get a really expensive trench but I'll wait until my kids are old enough not to be constantly smearing peanut butter all over it. :)

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  14. YES >> three variations on a theme = ira glass.

    Valentina
    Valentina Duracinsky Blog

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  15. Whether you're in a rut or in a groove depends on your point of view. Go with the groove. It suits you.

    My favorite photos were at the end when I could tell that your boy was off-screen, making you laugh. Happiness is a great look on you.

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  16. Your outfits are amazing. Great style! x

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  17. HI there! I am really enjoying your blog! I especially enjoyed the birthday/Halloween post about your precious son!!! Your posts make me smile!
    joanwpage.com
    Pages From Joan

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  18. ohhh those rag & bone boots. I daydream about them. If only they didn't cost as much as my rent...

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  19. I had an H&M trench that was perfect for a few years but it was cotton and not water proof and not particularly useful. It just looked cute. I upgraded to a London Fog petite classic trench and its MUCH better. Removeable liner, waterproof, washing machine safe and detachable hood. I feel like, at some point we move on from the "cute one" to the "utilitarian one" with clothes.

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  20. I also have a London Fog petite classic trench that I love, and has everything you're looking for trench coat wise. It has the added bonus of a removable hood and being waterproof but still matte (it doesn't have that shiny raincoat look). Although you might have to brave the macy's to get one :(

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  21. Nice shots!

    http://www.bluelabelsboutique.com

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  22. Hi, Natalie! Love the post, but the link to the necklace doesn't work. Any way you could re-post it? I'd love to see it up close. Keep these capsule posts a' comin'... they're fab!

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  23. I own 1/2 the things on your body in this post, we must have very similar styles :) or we shop at the same places. Ha! Cute pictures.

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  24. I finally found my trench on eBay. It's a Banana Republic one, which surprised me, but it's lined, nicely cut, waterproof, and comes in petite sizes so I didn't have to pay extra for tailoring. :)
    I've been pretending I'm doing a capsule wardrobe, too, inspired by you! I totally agree with you that I feel like I know myself better now (all snow leopard print forever), but I have been surprised that the capsule-ness of it all has made me want to shop more rather than less. I've been "trading up" things, but feel like I'm constantly scanning for various items. Not bad, necessarily, but still surprising to me.

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  25. So have you seen the trench coats that Everlane has? They aren't long, but gosh they're cute. Also, you are so petite I think you'd look great in a shorter one, practicality be damned!

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  26. Have you seen the trench coats that Everlane has right now? They aren't long, but gosh they're adorable. Also, you're so petite that you would look great in a shorter cut, practicality be damned!

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