It’s already been a year since my capsule wardrobe experiment began! Just to recap,last fall, I decided to do another closet cleanse to get back on track and out of the mindless shopping rut. Although, not as quite as drastic as Fashion for Freedom. Capsule wardrobes are often around 30-40 pieces of clothing, 37 seems to be a very popular number. The idea is that you have a set of basic pieces that can mix and match, and then you rotate in 5-6 new pieces for different seasons.
Over the last year, I’ve changed out my capsule for each season, ranging from 30-40 pieces in my closet each month (not counting workout clothes, pajamas, etc.). For this fall, I knew I wanted to shop the clothes I’d packed away last year, but I also wanted to add some updates for this fall’s trends.
Here’s eight trends I wanted to incorporate into my capsule:
I love sharing these little lists on occasion of things I’m loving. Here’s some things I’ve recently discovered, purchased, found useful, or been inspired by:
1. My exercise pants – with pockets!
I’ve long envied my sister-in-law’s workout capris with side pockets, and she got them for me for my birthday! I love capris, because they’re not as hot as pants (not wearable most of the time here) but they obviously provide more coverage than typical exercise shorts. But my pet peeve was not having any pockets. These Champion workout capris have a long pocket down the side of each leg that can easily fit a phone, tissues, keys, whatever you need to take with you when working out, or just lounging around the house. And they won’t break the bank.
These have become my got-home-from-work uniform, my working-from-home uniform, and my weekend uniform. Versatility!
2. Face primer
I recently got on a kick of watching YouTube make up tutorials. There’s something facinating and weirdly relaxing about watching other people put on makeup – although most routines are far too high maintenance for me. I was intrigued by the primer concept, especially since so many YouTubers swore by their face primers and claimed that they made their foundation last longer, their make up stay in place even on hot and sweaty days, and generally made their skin look smoother. Since I’m closer to 30 and no longer have the skin of someone in their early 20’s, I decided I would give this a try with the very cheapest one I could find, ELF face primer at Target.
It’s an extra step to my morning routine, but it actually does live up to the hype! Next, I want to try one with “illuminating” properties and see what that does.
When this book first came out, I dismissed it after reading some of the criticism leveled at it. I reconsidered after I watched Sheryl Sandberg’s interview at the Global Leadership summit this year. I was kind of blown away by how vulnerable, strong, smart, and successful she was, and so I bought her book. Every chapter I find myself nodding along, thinking, “Me too!”
Also – I might have a bit of reading to do this fall – my stack keeps growing.
4. The Marie Kondo folding method
I realize how random and nerdy this is – but yes, I’m a big fan of a particular way of folding clothes. Marie Kondo is the New York Times best-selling author of “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” and she has a specific method of folding that when done correctly, the piece of clothing can stand up.
I don’t know about the whole “communicating your love and gratitude” through your palms thing, but I do know that my drawers look SO much better, and it’s so much easier to see what I have and find what I want after folding my tees, tank tops, and workout clothes using this method, instead of rolling or stacking them. And seeing Marie’s joy in folding and tidying is just infectious.
5. This mom’s massive home de-cluttering videos
I wanted some inspiration for my post on 155 things to de-clutter from your life, and I found this mom vlogger, Joanna of The Nesting Story, and her first installment of her major house de-clutter. Talk about inspiring! If a mom of four kids (including twins!) can do it, we’ve got no excuses.
To my joy, she posted a part 2 video where she tackles her closet too, and I’m waiting expectantly for the next installments!
In other news, over this Labor Day weekend, I think I’m finally going to take the plunge and try to move this little blog of mine to WordPress (Whaaaaaaat!). Only about 5 years after everyone else – I know. I’m not 100% sure it’s going to work, but if anything funky goes on – that’s why. Wish me luck!
So, that’s what I’ve been loving lately. What about you? Any fun finds to share that have made your life better? Labor Day plans? Let me know in the comments below.
P.S. If you’re looking for a challenge this long weekend, it’s a great time to tackle the de-cluttering checklist I posted!
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September is the new January! I’ve told that to Brian so many times in the last week as he’s questioned why I’m de-cluttering, he now just rolls his eyes. Going back to school has permanently ingrained in me the feeling of fall being a fresh start, a time to refocus on old goals and make new ones. Maybe that’s why they say “turn over a new leaf,” because fall … leaves… MIND BLOWN.
Even though it’s still devilishly hot here in Arizona, I’m not going to let it get me down or chill my autumnal instincts. I’m preparing for one of my favorite fall traditions – the purge. Before I can cozy up for winter, I first have to get rid of all the stuff that’s creating disorder, stress, and holding me back from clarity and purpose by its mere existence.
This is a little different from my usual Friday Finds lists. As is probably obvious, I’ve never been too big on the whole Southwestern decor look, despite living in the Southwest.
But last month, as I looked for birthday party themes for Edison, I found so many lovely cactus/boho/southwestern decor items with a little feminine flair, and I just loved the contrast. I wasn’t on the cactus trend before, but now, I’m definitely stuck on it … too much?
I’m looking for creative ways to incorporate touches of it into our house, and put together this little inspiration board.
No, I’m not moving, at the moment. But in the seven years we’ve been married, we’ve moved six times. The first year after moving into our house, it felt almost weird to not be scouring for boxes, busting out the packing tape and sharpies, and uprooting again. But now we’ve happily lived here for over three years, moving is a distant nightmare.
With all that relocating, I do feel like I have some expertise in making moves … of the home kind. So when I noticed Casper (the mattress company) was sharing home moving tips, I thought I’d get involved. Sometimes it’s the simplest things that make a big difference. I’m not sure moving is ever totally easy, but at least we can aim for easier.
What a crazy last few weeks! Celebrated Edison’s first birthday with family in Iowa, which I’ll get around to posting about eventually. Then we decided for a fun weekend project, we’d just tear out our upper kitchen cabinets and replace them with open shelving.
“Quick weekend project.” Famous last words.
It just so happened that Brian also scheduled an appraisal for refinancing our house on Thursday. It also so happened that that was my birthday. So we had until Thursday to get our house looking good, and cleaned, and we had cabinets and tools and dishes EVERYWHERE. It took many late nights, trips to Home Depot, and maybe a few tears, but Thursday morning, we were as ready as we could be.
And after the appraisal, I came home from work early, and took a three hour nap. Happy birthday to me!
Although it’s not how I would have liked to spend my birthday week, it was nice to have a deadline for finishing up several things around the house and motivation to do some de-cluttering. I took a trunk load of things to Goodwill, sold some furniture on Craig’s list, and we took our old cabinets to Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore.
We’ve done a lot to the inside of the house, but the outside is a different story. Of course, curb appeal makes a big difference in an appraisal, but our house is lacking in that department. Aside from a new plant, with all the work going into the kitchen, we didn’t have time to do much of anything to the outside. But it has motivated us to start making progress there – we have a painting company coming on Monday to give us a quote.
Before the appraiser arrived, I took the opportunity to take photos of every room in the house, and the outside. Here’s our before:
That’s the view looking out from the French doors, and below is the view looking toward the doors from the side of the pool.
To the left, we have these massive garden beds. I’m not a gardener, although I’ve tried. The basil above is still barely hanging on, but succulents are the basically the extent of my gardening ability. I’m pretty sure I can see the plants trembling when I walk past that section at Home Depot.
To the other side, is this massive section of patio.
That’s where I’d like to create our outdoor living room – a comfy sectional, coffee table, and fire pit. Under the overhang, I’d like to create the outdoor dining room, right by the grill.
So basically, we’ve got a blank slate. Just imagine instead of beige and brown, our house is white with navy blue trim. My favorite patio of all time is Emily Henderson’s blue and white patio at the top of this post, and here’s a picture of it from another angle:
It’s pretty much perfection. Arhaus asked me to share inspiration for what I’d love to do to our patio to make it into a cozy, comfortable extension of our living room, and it was just the push I needed to make a plan.
First things first – lights. We have one string of cafe lights on our patio now, but I’d love to add more, especially draped over my dream fire pit and couch area. The patio above is actually a restaurant, and I love the white fireplace and touches of copper, the blue and white cushions, and amazing chairs.
This patio space is small in size but makes a splash with bright colors. The lanterns hanging in the corner are super cute, and I’m a fan of the navy and white striped curtains and complimentary orange. I think, based on the sign with street names, this is somewhere in Ames, Iowa, where I went to college for a couple years!
And from Arhaus’ blog, I’m a big fan of the row of tropical plants behind the sectional, the neutral rug, the chevron chair, and most of all, that coffee table! It’s actually made out of resin, but it looks just like the real thing. I love the rustic touch that balances the modern.
For my dream patio, I’d love to carry the navy with coral accents from inside, to the back yard with some accent pillows. I’d use a big sectional with navy fabric, anchored with a neutral gray rug, and add some fun with the chevron armchair and blue swing. I’d bring some greenery up around the patio in the form of succulents – but no cacti. That’s too much of a risk with curious boy and dog!
What would you include in your dream patio space? Share your #patiogoals in the comments below!
This year, I started a new habit. When the Sunday night blues start to creep over me as the sun sets, and the anxieties about facing the next week of work begin to rise, I retreat to our hallway bathroom for a bubble bath, magazine and candles in tow.
It works wonders for my mood, and I always feel relaxed and recharged to face the next week. But of all the rooms in our house, we’ve spent the least attention on the bathrooms so far. Probably because they’re adequate. They all work, and other than the master bath, were painted normal colors.
Yes, it’s painted brown. Not a great color for a bathroom.
And the idea of tackling a bathroom remodel is more than a little intimidating. In addition to the brown walls, which we repainted a light aqua, the shower floor is a good two feet lower than the bathroom floor. The configuration of the shelves in the walk-in closet create a lot of wasted space. The sink has an actual hole in it, and the countertop is a weird tile. That’s why the hallway bathroom is my bubble bath destination – even if this is supposed to be a shower/tub combo, it’s just too weird.
Brian’s idea is to not do anything until we can tear everything out and start over, which somehow (inexplicably to me) includes moving some of the bedroom walls. My idea is to start small – a new light fixture, perhaps. Then a new sink and countertop, followed by flooring, and a new shower/bath situation.
But Brian and I do share the same dream of a sliding barn door separating the master bathroom and closet from the rest of the bedroom. And I’ve noticed a few other reoccurring themes in my dreams for the perfect bathroom:
So, on our honeymoon, we stayed at the fanciest hotel we’d ever been to in our entire lives, and it had a glass shower, AND a bathtub. Since then, that’s symbolized the height of luxury to me. In the bathroom above, Glass, the Lucite support for the sink, and white marble tile and walls make a very small bathroom feel spacious.
2. A Variety of Textures and Contrast
First of all, I like the the pendant lights in the bathroom above. Secondly, the cowhide rug is a surprise touch on the floor. I’ve read that they are easy to maintain, and I’m guessing water resistant maybe?
Fluffy towels and a robe = must haves. I’ve noticed that many of the images that caught my attention use black and white tubs, black and white flooring, or a black ceiling, or even further down in this post, a black wall. I like that the black and white contrast feels a little retro and yet, modern. Plus, it’s minimalist and simple, and allows the gold accents or pretty marble to really shine.
Several weeks ago, I spent some time with some girls, one of whom was shopping for a first home, and one of her “must haves” was two sinks in the bathroom, because she’d never lived in a house that had only one, and wouldn’t know how to function. I realized that I’ve never lived in a house with two! Although I do know how to share a sink, having two in the master bathroom would be ideal.
For several years after moving to Arizona, I thought only one decor style existed: Southwestern. The only acceptable color scheme was brown, beige, gold, terra cotta, orange, and maybe olive green if you’re really adventurous. Basically, most homes and places of business were brown, light brown, yellow-shiny brown, red brown, bright red brown, and green-brown. You did have the choice between going more South of the Border Southwestern, Native American Southwestern, Elegant Spanish Southwestern, or Full-on-Cowboy Mode Southwestern, but there your options ended.
Then, thanks to Instagram, I discovered an entire community of vintage lovers in the valley. They made and sold everything from art to jewelry to home decor in styles like Shabby Chic, Victorian, French Country, Retro Modern, Mid-century Modern, and Full-on-Hipster-From-Portland.
Unfortunately, soon after arriving, we encountered a problem. There was no possible way I could fit the stroller into the booths. I could only peruse the very edges of the displays, and even then, there were so many people, I felt like I was blocking traffic. After a few laps around the building, looking longingly at all the cool things I couldn’t reach, Edison got cranky. As the crowds grew, so did his displeasure. Outside, he was fine, but as soon as we went indoors, he started crying. So, Brian ended up coming and rescuing him. Of course, he fell asleep just before Brian arrived.
I really, really want one of these log coffee tables. And the orb light fixtures.
In addition to shops, they also had fresh flowers from The Florette, a farmer’s market, and food trucks. Plus, the proceeds from the ticket cost went to the school in Tanzania that Scottsdale Bible founded and supports.
Fruit of the Spirit baseball tee for me, and Phoenician tee for Edison from Dovetail Vintage
I’ve found a home for everything – the frame and key are part of the new gallery wall soon to be revealed, the vintage books are on display, the plant stand is in place by the fireplace, the bowl and heart are on the mantle. I’ve worn my baseball tee maybe a little more than is socially acceptable, and while Edison’s might be a little big on him still, I’m very excited for us to be sort of matching.
I discovered so many great vendors that I’m looking forward to visiting again! The future over here is definitely not looking brown – more like white, mint, and chipped, and maybe a little rusty.
Imagining Edison in this outfit makes me so happy! Mustard yellow is one of my favorite colors, especially in January, when we have a few more cloudy days than usual. Although, I’m not really complaining about the weather, since I know most of the country just dealt with Blizzard 2016.
I should mention that as of right now, Edison doesn’t own any of these items, and also this post isn’t sponsored. These are fun finds on my wish list, not only because of how adorable they are, but also the stories behind the products.
This year, one of my resolutions is to get back to shopping ethically. It used to be difficult to find very ethical children’s clothing, but I’ve found so many great shops on Instagram that I can’t wait to share with you!
The slouchy beanie is from NOXX, and is handmade locally, in Scottsdale Arizona. They make beanies of all sizes, with new colors and fabrics all the time. Since he has practically no hair still, I’m thinking that some hats might be a good idea for Edison.
The jersey leggings are from Alexandra Rose, and are also handmade. I wish they came in grown up sizes!
I love the truth on this tiny baby sweatshirt from Camplight Apparel. Every purchase from Camplight Apparel helps feed malnourished children.
These leather loafer shoes are from Potato Feet, a handmade family business in LA. I’ve put several pairs of their moccasins on my wish list.
The colors and patterns in this quilt are stunning! It’s also handmade, from a local company in Mesa called KB Cute Designs. They also make bedding, changing covers, swaddle blankets, and beanies.
Have you found any great local treasures lately? Give them a shout out in the comments!
Happy Friday! Just a handful of things/blogs/shops/articles that I found inspiring, encouraging, or entertaining:
1. The Happy Hour Podcast with Jamie Ivey. Disclaimer: I’ve only listened to one episode so far. Disclaimer to my disclaimer: that’s all it took for me to know that this podcast is excellent. It really is like sitting with your best girlfriends for happy hour, except that in this case your girlfriends are all the authors, bloggers, artists, and creative women you admire from around the whole internet. So you should gather the real life girlfriends you admire, and tell them to listen to this podcast with you, during happy hour.
3. “Make Room” Advent Calendar and Devotional from Naptime Diaries. I love Advent. Well, I should say, I love the idea of Advent. Don’t we all want to slow down and savor the true meaning of the Christmas season? I’m just really bad at it. This advent calendar and devotional would provide that motivation and accountability. Plus, it’s just pretty.
4. Life Lived Beautifully Fashion Week with Gretchen. I so enjoyed Gretchen’s series last week on fashion from a Biblical perspective. This post especially, Fashion and Real Life, is chock full of practical advice. Gretchen has a four month old, and I have an almost three month old, so if she can get dressed every day, I can too! She introduced me to several new ethical fashion brands that I’m excited to check out.
5. New and improved Decor and Storage Ideas for Your Dorm Room (And Other Small Spaces) Part one and Part 2. Can you believe that Pinterest wasn’t even really a thing when I first wrote those posts?! I’m almost considered old in blogging years. So this week I took some time (actually, a TON of time, like, days) to fix all the broken links and images for things that no longer existed, and added brand new thrifty decorating and storage ideas that you can try out really anywhere you need to maximize your storage or add a little flair.
That’s what I found this week! What about you? Let me know in the comments or on Instagram.