What to do when you’re bored with your winter clothes

This happens every year. Every single year I get prematurely pumped for Spring and take my sundresses out of storage, pack up  my heavier sweaters in a box in the closet, and start browsing pastel sandals online, only to be hit by a blizzard. 

The mild December weather always tricks me into thinking that we’ll “skip” winter this year, and even though I know this always happens, I still can’t help but get my hopes up. I am so over all the sweaters and lumpy layers and Hunter boots. Even my favorite black coat is starting to drive me crazy-the sleeves are made of a faux-leather material that squeaks when I move my arms, and every time I hear it I am again filled with rage that I have to wear my heaviest coat in March, post-daylight-saving. 

If you are also bored by all of your winter clothing options but unable to buy an entirely new wardrobe to wear for the few remaining weeks of winter weather, this is for you. Here are my best tips for ~spicing things up~ without ~spending all of your money~. 

Borrow clothes/do a clothing swap

Featuring: my roommate’s Madewell coat that doesn’t squeak when I move 

I am lucky enough to have very cool, well-dressed roommates who are also very generous when it comes to sharing closets. We often swap items for the day when we’re feeling exasperated with our own options, and it is so refreshing to wear someone else’s clothes instead of your own! If you don’t have roommates (or if your roommates aren’t cool, bummer) then find a friend with a similar style and swap a few items. I do this several times a year with my best friend. I purge my closet and let her go through the clothes that don’t fit or aren’t really my style any more, and she does the same for me. Anything unwanted gets donated. 

Buy inexpensive transitional accessories

Featuring: Forever 21 sheer polka dot tights

The whole point of this post is that I don’t want to spend tons of money on clothes that I’ll pack away in approximately four weeks and trade for sundresses and sandals. But accessories are an inexpensive way to give some interest to your most-worn outfits. Add fishnets under pants, a silk scarf around your neck, or a belt to change up your go-to outfits. 

Experiment with layers

I know. Duh. There is not a single blog or fashion magazine that hasn’t mentioned the importance of layering when it’s cold. I’m just suggesting you change things up and not wear the same old layers. I have three or four go-to outfits that I know look good and are flattering, and I can put those together in my sleep–usually because I am half-asleep when I race out the door for work before I’ve had my coffee. When I have extra time, I like to change things up. I wrote a whole post about this, so if you want to read more, you can here


– Hannah 

What to wear when you’re ready for spring but it’s still snowing 

If you’re anything like me, you have those moments where you look at your closet in despair and cry, internally or out loud to anyone who will listen, “I have nothing to wear!” 

I find this is even more true now that I am trying to curate a capsule wardrobe. I’m not quite there yet, but I have significantly pared down my closet in the past several months. 

When I get into a creative rut like this, I often borrow clothes from my very cool roommates. This gives me the small thrill of wearing new (to me) clothes while keeping true to my goals and not buying too many new clothes.

I hit one of these ruts last week, and instead of giving in and buying something new, I decided to take a page out of Rebecca Jacob’s book and layer one of my favorite warm weather shirts over a turtleneck. I loved the pop of color and spring feel, with the warmth of several layers. I think this outfit would’ve been a bit more successful if the sleeves of the blue top were flowy, but I like how it looked with my jacket on, and it was such a breath of fresh air to wear something different! 

Top: H&M (last season, similar here) // Boots: Old Navy // Earrings: Bing Bang NYC 


– Hannah

New Blue Shoes 

I don’t know how you decide what to wear, but for me it varies every morning. Sometimes I plan an outfit the night before, and sometimes I’ll wait for inspiration to strike in the morning. Other times I wake up, check the weather, see a number below freezing, and wonder if it’s inappropriate to wear my pink fuzzy robe and comforter to work. 

This outfit was all about the shoes. They were a Christmas present from my mom. I asked for them back in November, and she spent the entire month pretending she hadn’t bought them, making me even more excited to open them on Christmas day. I immediately tried them on and found that they were not only cute as heck, but also comfortable, which is like hitting the shoe jackpot. 

Only time and distance can really test shoes, though, so I wore these to get brunch with one of my best friends a few weeks ago.

On their first public appearance, my shoes got coffee spilled on them, but also received a sincere compliment from a stranger, so ya win some ya lose some. Perhaps more important, the shoes were able to stand up to my personal Good Shoe Test™ meaning they didn’t hurt my feet after 4 miles of walking in them. 4 miles is not an arbitrary number, but one I have arrived at after years of research and tracking my average walking distance on my phone. I usually average 4 miles of walking a day, and shoes that can get me through the day without giving me blisters or aching arches are A+ in my book.

Also, if that hasn’t sold you by now, they are on sale for under $20 right now, which makes me want to buy another pair just to get in on such a good deal. I’m not being paid by Zara to tell you this, I just get aggressively excited about a really good sale. If you do too, you can buy the shoes from Zara’s website << by clicking that link. Happy shopping! 


– Hannah

New Years Resolutions + Thoughts on Personal Growth

Image via Tumblr

Happy New Year! I hope 2017 is treating you kindly. 

There is something about a new start, even one as arbitrary as a changing year, that makes me feel so optimistic. I am not usually one to write out a list of New Years resolutions, mostly because I am afraid I’ll aim too high or too low and set myself up for failure. For example–if I set a goal to work out every day and I can’t make that happen, then I’ve failed. But if I set a goal to work out once a week, am I selling myself short? Or worse, what if I can’t even manage my “safety” goal and then really feel like a failure? 

Yeah, I’m probably over-thinking it. So I don’t set resolutions. But I am participating in 21 days of prayer and fasting with my church, and I notice that I have been praying for specific things and ways I would like to grow this year. Which I guess are resolutions in their own way, just not ones that you could quantify in a list.

One realization I’ve had during this time of daily prayer and scripture is that I’ve been living my life with a spirit of fear. This isn’t really news to me or anyone who knows me well. I have always been anxious, since I was a child, and it’s something that I struggle with. There are good weeks and bad weeks, but there is always that anxiety lingering just below the surface even on the good weeks. 

BUT God really revealed to me just how much I have been letting fear consume me and determine my decisions in ways that I didn’t even realize. I have been dwelling on my regrets lately, and looking back on decisions I made out of fear and distrust, rather than making the decision that was best for me. I don’t want to live that way, so I’ve been taking small steps to live without unnecessary fear and anxiety–especially over things that don’t matter. This is just the start of a long process, but I already feel great about it and excited to continue to grow.

Do you make resolutions, or do you have a theme for 2017? In what ways are you hoping to improve this year? Leave a comment below and let me know!


– Hannah 

Casual Christmas

My dad’s side of the family has a tradition where we all get together, usually the week before Christmas, and have a nice meal together and open presents from our grandparents. Many of my cousins are now in college and we’re spread out over the country, and I love that most of us are still able to gather together once a year. 

This Christmas party is more on the casual side–cozy sweaters, jeans, t-shirt dresses–and most holiday blog posts I’ve seen are geared toward very dressy events. I thought I would share my laid-back, casual Christmas outfit if you are looking for a way to wear Christmas colors without looking like a Christmas tree. This olive green is more muted than the bright green usually associated with this time of year, and this dress is so comfortable and inexpensive! 

Dress: H&M // Tights: Uniqlo // Shoes: Nasty Gal // Bag: Fossil 

– Hannah

Trends Two Ways: Fishnets

Every year on Black Friday my goal is to get Christmas shopping done and not get caught up in buying things for myself. I did a decent job this year (I actually bought most Christmas gifts online) but I couldn’t resist a new pair of jeans from H&M. And then, on a whim, a pair of fishnet tights. 

I’ve been toying with the idea of getting a pair if fishnet socks for some time, but I don’t have the right pair of shoes to wear them with. So then I would have to buy new shoes to go with them. And probably some cropped pants to show off the socks. And by that time it’s a downward spiral like that children’s book, “If You Give A Mouse A Cookie.” 

But fishnet tights reminded me a bit too much of the Hot Topic years. They seemed like more of a committment than just the socks. I was a bit intimidated. And I received a lot of questions from frienda and family, because I wore the tights in Pennsylvania over the holiday and not NY, where I could wear a paper mache bird on my head and no one would bat an eye. Are fishnet tights trendy again? Can they be worn on nice occasions or are they still “grungy” and “edgy”?  And, my favorite, “Oh, were you out fishing before you came to this party?” 

So I wore the fishnets with two very different outfits, not with the intention of writing a blog post about it but because I’m obsessed with them. 

Outfit 1: This outfit is one of my all-time favorites. It’s all a little bit baggy, maybe edgy, and very comfortable. I really like the look of patterned tights under ripped jeans, and what seems like an intentional fashion statement doubles as a trick to keep your legs warm. If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time you’ve probably picked up that I am all about comfort, or functionality if you will, so I love everything about this outfit. My best friend complimented it but also made fun of it, so the jury is still out on how cool it actually looks. 

Top: Zara / Jeans: H&M / Fishnet tights: H&M / Boots: Nasty Gal / Bag: Fossil

Outfit 2: Same boots and tights, paired with a velvet skirt, black sweater, and my mom’s jacket for a mom of color (but actually because I couldn’t find my own black jacket). This outfit is more festive and less edgy, and I was surprised by how much I liked the tights even when there were no pants covering them. 

It’s safe to say I’m sold on this trend. What do you think about fishnet tights and socks making a come-back? Which outfit is your favorite? Let me know! 


– Hannah 

My go-to brow products

Before I start this post, let’s get one thing straight. By no means do I think I have perfect eyebrows. I have a long history of brow problems, starting when I was thirteen and wanted to “shape” my brows because I had read something about it in Tiger Beat magazine–which, for those of you who don’t know, was the authoritative guide on how to get Zac Efron to fall in love with you–and I wanted to be desirable to the likes of Zac Efron. I decided to use small grooming scissors to “trim” my eyebrows, which I did right in the middle of my arch (???? Baby Hannah what were you thinking ????) on the day I was getting my annual pictures taken probably at Sear’s (School Picture Day for homeschoolers). 

So when I present you with these brow products, I need you to know that I did not just pick these willy-nilly because Glossier packaging is perfect (even though it is) or because Kiss NY Professional so kindly sent me their brow pencil to try* (even though they did). I have agonized over finding the perfect brow products for years and I am finally at a place where I feel pretty darn good about how my eyebrows look. Yes, sometimes mistakes are made and I imagine that I could be Brooke Shields and I draw them on a little too heavy and I look back on pictures and cringe because even though bold eyebrows are trendy I don’t think anything on your face should be a “trend.” But most days my brows frame my face and I get compliments on them and people ask me what brow products I use and how I use them. So without further ado, here we go. 

Here is my baby face without eye makeup. As you can see, my brows are trying their best to frame my eyes, but they need a little bit of help. I fill them in using Top Brow from Kiss New York Professional. I’ve tried several eye pencils from high end and drugstore brands, and this is my favorite because both the pencil and the spoolie (the end that looks like a mascara wand that you use to comb your brows) are very thin, which gives you a lot of control and precision when filling in your brows. The consistency of the pencil is also not too powdery or too waxy. 

Here is what my brows look like after filling them in with the Kiss NY Pro pencil and combing them through. I tried to take a few pictures of how I fill them in, but I look way too intense. Clearly I take eyebrows very seriously. Sometimes I leave them like this, but often I go over them with a coat of Boy Brow from Glossier to darken them. 

I’m not sure if the difference is discernable to you, but to me the addition of Boy Brow makes my brows just a little more defined and a bit darker and closer to my hair color. 

I’m not kidding about how much I love these products. The Kiss NY Pro pencil has gotten so much use that the writing is almost completely smudged off. Let me know if you’ve tried either of these, or your favorite brow products are! 


– Hannah 
* I am not paid to write about any products mentioned in this post. The Kiss NY Pro pencil was provided for me to test. All opinions are my own.