About Me

My photo
Kings Mountain, North Carolina, United States
"A mind lively and at ease" is a blog by a first-generation Russian-Ukrainian immigrant Maria K. (Maria Igorevna Kuroshchepova). An engineer by education, an analyst by trade, as well as a writer, photographer, artist and amateur model, Maria brings her talent for weaving an engaging narrative to stories of life, fashion and style advice, book and movie reviews, and common-sense and to-the-point essays on politics and economy.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Look book - running errands in style

I wish I had a dime for every time I said one of the following: casual does not equal sloppy, there is such a thing as comfortable stylish clothes, classy casuals are washable too, and sneakers and sweats belong at the gym (as do yoga pants and sport tops). Case in point - this is the outfit I wore on Saturday.

Just to put it into perspective. It was an 80 degree day, very muggy. I had to do the grocery run, which included loading 20-pound bags of cat litter into the car (in addition to other groceries), then unloading at home - complete with navigating romantic-yet-crumbly rock steps leading to my door. So, it was not as if I sat in an air-conditioned space all day, with hot valets bringing me cold beverages and snacks. While at home, I also ran a couple of loads of laundry, which involved running up and down my plywood basement steps with heavy laundry hampers. I was able to accomplish all of the above, in those clothes, with no excessive sweating or bodily injuries.

The t-shirt is from Hanes. I love Hanes - in the summer I practically live in their soft cool t-shirts and dresses. First of all, Hanes understands the difference between comfortable and baggy. All their tops and dresses are very easy to wear but they have a shape to them. They are not skin-tight - that would be just as bad as sloppy, even for the skinniest of us. No, they are neat and trim, narrowing and flaring out in all the right places. I was having a bad back day on Saturday, and had to wear a therapeutic corset top under the tee (think Spanx on crack - something that is actually strong enough to keep the spine where its supposed to be instead of wobbling all over the place). Despite having essentially two layers on, I was still cool and comfortable.

Another thing I like about Hanes tops is that they are inexpensive, come in fun colors and always have some interest to them. This tee here is basic black, but the scoop neck has braided trim.

The tee allowed me to tie into the skirt (from CATO), that is light and colorful with some black in the pattern. I love pieces like that - pieces involving multiple colors in a good pattern. This particular skirt can be worn with black, white, and various shades of pink. While I love linen, it creases dreadfully, so, I was very glad to find this in a linen blend, where I get the advantage of the cool natural fabric but not the creasing. The bold pattern also helps hide any wrinkles that might accumulate during the day. The skirt has a little bit of decoration and beading to it, which means it can cross over from daytime activities (worn with wedges or ballet flats, if you are taller) to a summer evening dinner or drinks with friends (with a silk cami and strappy sandals).

A lot of women tell me, "I don't like wearing skirts in general, but especially in the summer, because my thighs rub together and it's very uncomfortable." I agree. It IS uncomfortable. I have chubby thighs too. But I also love skirts and dresses, and I think they are way more cool and comfortable than jeans in the summer. So, I have found a workaround - longer knickers. You can get them anywhere from Wal Mart to Dillards. They are very soft and comfortable, very easy to wear, and allow you to wear skirts and dresses even at the height of dog days.

Of course, it wouldn't be me, if I didn't accessorize. The earrings are a part of a set I bought a long time ago at Dress Barn. Incidentally, jewelry set addicts, the sets CAN be worn separately. You will not be struck down by lightning if you wear the necklace but not the earrings or vise versa. In fact, it is advisable to separate them, because wearing both bold earrings and a matching bold necklace makes you look over-accessorized around your face and neck.

The shoes are wedge slides. I love heels, but wedges especially, because they are so easy to wear. They give me a little bit of extra height and visually elongate the leg, so I can get away with wearing longer hems, but they are also very secure and supportive, so very easy to wear when I have to be on my feet all day. The verdict? A+! I am definitely wearing this again.

No comments: