Fashion/Style

My Favorite Accessory For Looking Put Together (Even When I Don’t Have Time)*

My Favorite Accessory For Looking Put Together (Even When I Don’t Have Time) | Writing Between Pauses

Before I had Forrest, I spent a lot of time on my wardrobe. I shopped frequently and spent a lot of time picking out outfits. However, once the chaos of motherhood descended, a lot of that got pushed aside.

As Forrest has gotten older, I’ve only gotten busier. I blog, of course; I freelance; and I work for a digital marketing agency. Between parenting, working, cleaning my house, and taking time for myself (I have to cross stitch sometime!), I find myself with less and less time every single day it feels like!

That means that usually, I have to pick one area to focus on. If you know me, you know that that’s often my makeup; I feel most put together when I get my lipstick and mascara on… even if I’m wearing my comfy joggers and a hoodie!

Recently, however, I’ve been working on creating simple “uniforms” for myself to wear to work everyday. These outfits consist of:

  • A few dresses that I just feel good in

  • Jeans, flowy tops, and nice cardigans

  • Trousers, blouses, and jackets

A lot of this has been my attempt to stop wearing leggings every single day! It’s hard to dress up leggings, that’s for sure, but I knew for my work, I needed to start focusing more on how I present myself, even when I don’t feel 100% great or I’m running on less than 3 hours of sleep.

JORD Watch Cora Polaris

The time I have for looking put together is often minimal. In the morning, I am usually getting Forrest dressed while I make my coffee, then putting on makeup while I assure him that we will, in fact, get to my mom’s on time. I am often super behind on laundry, which means sometimes I’m running around looking for my favorite black H&M jeans in the middle of letting my setting powder bake.

That’s why having a few set uniforms for myself makes every morning go just a little bit easier. What I decide to wear is basically already picked out--I just have to remember what’s on my roster for the day! If I have a meeting, I might go for a dress or a jacket with my jeans instead of a top and cardigan. If I’m just going to be working in my office, I’ll wear jeans and a t-shirt which I can throw a cardigan on top of if I need to run out.

One thing that makes every outfit pop and look just slightly more put together is a great accessory. And lately, that great accessory has been my new JORD Watch. When JORD reached out to me about writing a post, I was so excited; I’ve been drooling over some gorgeous timepieces recently. I wear a Fitbit Versa most days, which isn’t really the most high end of looks, so I wanted something I could wear to a meeting or a night out that was more functional than jewelry, but prettier than a Fitbit!

Rose Gold Watch

The JORD watch I chose is the Cora Polaris in Koa and Rose Gold. Like most people, I’ve been obsessed with rose gold the last few months, so this was a no brainer when it came to choosing! I love how subtle the rose gold is and the Koa wood is so absolutely stunning. Here’s a little bit about Koa:

“Koa is a species native to Hawaii and is widely considered to be the most beautiful of the native hardwoods. Though softer than several of our used wood species, Koa machines exceptionally well and finishes smooth with a beautiful natural sheen. Depending on the harvest season, Koa wood will produce tones that range from medium gold to reddish brown, similar to Mahogany.”

The color of the watch is gorgeous; the Koa wood is a warm-toned, which goes beautifully with the rose gold pieces of this timepiece, but goes with everything I own. It doesn’t look out of place. I’ve gotten so many compliments on this watch the last few times I’ve worn it to meetings or to work.

The thing I love most about JORD is their focus on sustainable practices when it comes to creating beautiful timepieces. That means you can feel good about your purchase, because you know it’s going to a company that absolutely loves what they do and does everything with sustainability in mind.

Because these watches are made with wood, it does require a little bit more care. Thankfully, every JORD order comes with instructions for care--which boil down to using Tung Oil or Lemon Oil on your watch, as well as ensuring that you store it properly between wears.  

Watch with Red Plaid Dress

Nothing makes me feel better these days than being complimented on my outfit--and I’ve definitely had more of those moments since I started wearing my Cora Polaris watch from JORD. I’m so excited to have the opportunity to receive this watch from JORD-- and I’m even more excited that I have the opportunity to offer this same feeling to one of my followers.

Click here to enter my giveaway to receive $100 OFF a watch from JORD. As well, when you enter, you’ll still receive a 10% off code for any order from JORD as well--which means, even if you don’t win, you still can order a JORD watch!

Disclaimer: As usual, an asterisk (*) in the title of this post denotes that I received this item in exchange for review and promotion. However, all opinions remain my own. Posts like this help Writing Between Pauses keep going! For more information about my disclosure policy, click here.

5 Autumn Sweaters to Cozy Up In

5 Autumn Sweaters to Cozy Up In | Writing Between Pauses

Me: I’m going to buy ALL the sweaters.

Also me: *sees sweater prices* well, let’s see which ones I should prioritize.

I love a good sweater, but sometimes it is hard to sort through all the trendy sweaters (I’m looking at you, Dinosaur Fair Isles that show up at Forever 21 every year) to find ones that won’t just be a good sweater this year, but for the next 5-10 years. I’ve done a little bit of digging and have found 5 of the best Autumn sweaters I can find; these will carry you through not just Fall and Winter, but into Spring as well.

Old Navy Autumn Sweater

1. Classic Boat-Neck Sweater from Old Navy, $20

Who doesn’t love a classic stripey sweater? I love the soft, oatmeal-gray color of this one, as well as the longer, tunic shape. It’s perfect for a quick outfit over leggings; but you can also wear it with jeans or trousers and a blazer for a more work-appropriate look.

H&M Autumn Sweater | Writing Between Pauses

2. Knit Sweater from H&M, $34.99

The big cozy. I feel like I’m always looking for the perfect oversized sweater. For being so popular, they are sure are hard to find. This one from H&M is perfect: soft, cozy, and oversized. It will look great with leggings when you’re running errands. Or with your sweatpants when you’re at home. You know, either one.

ModCloth Autumn Sweater | Writing Between Pauses

3. Play It Cowl Sweater from ModCloth, $59.00

We often think of Autumn colors as purely in the warm family; however, I consider all jewel tones, like emerald and teal, to also be Autumn colors. That’s why I picked this sweater; I love the rich teal color, as well as the comfy cowl neck. It’s perfect for wearing with trousers to work, then going to a Holiday party afterwards. Honestly, it’s just the perfect sweater. This may be one I’ve ordered for myself. It’s that cute!

American Eagle Autumn Sweater | Writing Between Pauses

4. Impossibly Soft Cable Knit Sweater from American Eagle, $44.95

I love American Eagle sweaters and despite being considered somewhat of a “teenager" brand, they hold up really well. This cable knit sweater is such a classic—and I love this burnt orange color! It will look so cute with jeans and a scarf, as well as over a skirt and tights. Plus, it’s super, super soft—that means no itchy wool!

Madewell Autumn Sweater | Writing Between Pauses

5. Crofton Striped Pullover Sweater from Madewell, $69.99

Ah, this sweater. It’s cute, classic, and can carry you through all the seasons, at it is a bit lighter than the others sweaters here. I love the colorblocking because you can wear it with lots of different combinations of skirts, trousers, and jeans. I also love the slightly baggy, relaxed shape. It’s a little expensive (nearly $70 on sale!), but with good care, it will last you several years.

5 Inspirational Autumn Outfits

5 Inspirational Autumn Outfits | Writing Between Pauses

I used to love writing posts like this, but in the last year, it has become increasingly difficult. Why? Because Polyvore shut down! I feel like Polyvore was such a unique, early-to-mid 2000s blogging resource and now, it’s simply gone. I’ve turned to Instagram instead to gather outfits to inspire us in these Autumn todays.

Today is the first legitimately rainy day of Autumn here in Oregon. It makes me want to snuggle up and read, or watch movies. But instead, I have to work (of course). For that reason, the outfits I’ve chosen are appropriate for both the weekend and casual workplaces. In a testament to how much I’ve changed in the last few years, all of these outfits include jeans!

Let me know in the comments your favorite outfit (and what your favorite rainy day movie is!).

1. Burnt Orange

I have always been a little obsessed with this slightly burnt orange color. And lately, I’ve been feeling bell sleeves and (dare I say it?) peplums. I used to be heartily anti peplum, but then I had a baby, and well… a peplum hides a lot doesn’t it? I love this outfit, complete with sensible boots, dark jeans, and a cozy scarf. 

2. Pretty in Pink

If you’re in a colder climate, this is a great outfit. As well, not all autumnal outfits have to be warm-toned! A dusty pink sweater, a thick cozy beanie, and jeans is perfect for a busy weekend. Pop on a coat over the top and it can transition to winter really easily. 

3. Monotone

I love gray. I wear gray more than any other color. This pale sweater with a thick scarf and beanie is great for the weekend when it is particularly blustery. 

4. Striped

Another peplum top! I told you, they are growing on me a bit! I love this simple, comfy looking striped peplum top. Paired with a simple cardigan and boots, this is a great outfit for the pumpkin patch or a work meeting. 

5. Grandpa Sweater

I unabashedly love grandpa sweaters. You know the ones: the thick, homey sweaters that are perfect for tucking tissues into the pockets. (Yes, you heard me. Tissue pockets.) I love this sweater because it is so ornate and yet, so cozy looking. Add a striped top and your favorite jeans and you’re ready to go. 


One last note! Do you have a Blogtober post you want shared? Send me a tweet on Twitter with a link; I’m putting together my first Best of Blogtober post this week!

4 Essential Items for Spring Travel

4 Essential Items for Spring Travel | Writing Between Pauses

It's Spring Break! At least for my husband, Danny. We always look forward to spring break because we spend it either visiting his parents or relaxing. This year, his parents are coming to us. 

I try not to turn trips into excuses to buy a whole bunch of new stuff. But there is something very exciting about treating yourself to a few little things for your trip, whether it's just a new makeup bag or an outfit. I put together a list of 4 great essential items to treat yourself to this year. Whether you're leaving tomorrow or in a few weeks, these will be perfect to take along. 

Spring Essentials Graphic

1. Wet'n'Wild 10-Pan Palette in "Nude Awakening", $4.99

I know what you're thinking: a $5 Wet'n'Wild eyeshadow palette? Listen, I thought the same thing when I first bought one of these palettes (they have them in 4 different color stories). But these shadows are really, really good. The Rose in the Air one is a dupe for Modern Renaissance. This palette is perfect for every kind of look: simple day looks, single shadow looks, and smoky, dramatic night looks. And for only $5, it's a total steal. 

2. ASOS Mix'n'Match Star Print Dress, $23

This dress is so cute: long enough without being fussy. And no weird cut outs. (Trust me, I checked.) I love the mix of star prints, as well as the shape; with the nipped in waist, it flatters every body type, but isn't so cinched that you'll be uncomfortable. 

3. Unique Vintage Hello Sunshine Sun Hat, $32

A sun hat, especially if you're traveling somewhere very warm, is an absolute must. Protecting your skin will keep you looking flawless. (So don't forget SPF either and if you tan, you're still damaging your skin!) I love this one from Unique Vintage; it's almost like it was made for cute Instagram photos. While it's a little spendy for $32, it's very sturdy and will hold up to just about everything. 

4. ModCloth Swan for the Books Make Up Bag, $14.99

Going on a trip means you need a new makeup bag, right? This one from ModCloth is so cute--and sturdy. I love the swan print; it's cute without being "too much." It's the perfect size for carrying everything you need for a short trip. Plus, it's on sale right now! 

Spring Color Series: Canary Yellow

Spring Color Series: Canary Yellow | Writing Between Pauses

It's officially here: the last in my spring color series. (You can read all the other posts here.)

Putting these together every week has been one of my absolute highlights. These were never meant to be all that serious, but rather fun posts for me to explore colors that are trending and that we can all incorporate into our wardrobes (or decor) relatively easily and affordably. 

I saved my favorite for last: canary yellow. 

When I say canary yellow, however, I don't mean just bright yellow; I mean shades of chartreuse or lemon, mustard or rusty. All shades of yellow apply here, as long as it's beautiful, bright, and sunny. 

Let's jump in and talk about yellow--and what's inspiring me for this color! 

Inspiration

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Yellow is one of those colors that is simultaneously always in fashion, but feels difficult to wear. When we talk about "yellow," some people imagine it as a sickly color or a childish color. Baby nurseries are butter yellow or sunny yellow. I once read a poem that described hospitals as smelling yellow. 

Some have mixed feelings about yellow... but I love it. 

A few years ago, mustard yellow everything was the trend. I had a mustard yellow skirt that I ended up shrinking in the washing machine (RIP yellow skirt) and a mustard yellow cardigan that I wore to my first ultrasound appointment. Mustard yellow was everywhere. 

Yellow can be one of those colors that's a little bit of everything; it goes with neutrals, but it can be paired with other bright or primary colors for a little bit of fun. It can be sunny, or preppy, or athletic. It can be whatever you want it to be. I specifically like it in these two color palettes because you can see how well it pairs with other neutrals (with gray for a more modern look, or with brown for something that's a little 1970s reminiscent). 

Top 3 Picks

Forever 21 lemon bag
Modcloth
Forever 21 shoes

1. Lemon Wedge Cross-body Bag

The cross-body bag trend isn't going away anytime soon. I know novelty bags are just that--novelties, a little impractical for day-to-day life. But just imagine wearing this lemon wedge bag with jeans and a gray cardigan to brunch. It's big enough to carry your essentials and cute enough to remind us that, despite the fact that it's snowing in places it really shouldn't, spring is coming! 

2. Ikebana for All A-Line Midi Skirt in Saffron Floral

This skirt reminds me so much of the mustard skirt I had... I almost ordered it. Almost. With a bright, pretty floral pattern and a gorgeous, buttery yellow color, this skirt is perfect for wearing to the office. Pair with some flats or kitten heels and a sweater for a perfect early Spring outfit. 

3. Faux Patent Leather Slide Sandals in Yellow

These sandals (yes, sandals, spring is going to get here, I promise) are the perfect addition thing to wear when you want to look trendy, but don't really have the cash. (They're less than $25. Really.) I would pair them with a striped skirt and a cardigan; but they'd also look great with skinny jeans or shorts. And their somewhat muted canary yellow color is great for the season and goes with just about every neutral. 

Spring Color Series: Shades of Grey

Spring Color Series: Shades of Grey | Writing Between Pauses

Welcome to part 3 of my spring color series: all about grey. Grey is the most popular neutral out there at the moment, so it felt stupid to not include it. And just like millennial pink, there are lots of shades of grey out there (including my favorite, lavender-grey) to choose from. Don't forget to read about forest green and millennial pink

Grey has been definitely having a moment, just like millennial pink. Last summer, I painted a pretty significant wall in my house lavender-grey (and got so many compliments I ended up sending out paint samples to more than one person). Grey is definitely considered a neutral this day, meaning you can pair it with almost every other color out there--but especially the other three colors in this series. 

Inspiration

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There are so many shades of grey and it's so easy to pair with just about everything. Whether you're looking at adding it to your decor (grey statement walls are very in, as are grey accessories) or incorporating it into your wardrobe, there are lots of directions to go without changing your entire room or wardrobe. An example: Danny and I have a brown-green couch; our lavender-grey wall goes really well with it, something I really needed because we didn't have money for a new couch; and we added dark green curtains to the window recently that really tied the room together. Whether you go for a cool-toned grey or something more brown-toned, there is a shade of grey for every use. 

Top 3 Picks

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1. Minimalist Bliss Ballet Flats from ModCloth 

These flats are so cute & the perfect piece to add to any neutral wardrobe. These chic ballet flats have an interesting silhouette (better than the standard rounded toe), meaning they will look good about anything. I read once that showing more of your foot creates a more "feminine" look: so pairing these with rolled up jeans and a t-shirt would be super cute. Or pair them with your favorite winter dress and a jacket for a breezy weekend look. They are effortlessly cute! 

2. Small Glass Vase from H&M 

When it comes to decor, sometimes less is more. I've been eyeing a few of these glass vases from H&M for a while; imagine them with a single flower, or a single fern leaf. Eye-catching, without breaking the bank. (They're only $3.99!) This one is a lovely, slightly lilac grey color that will look great on anyone's desk. 

3. Mid-Rise Distressed Girlfriend Grey Jeans from GAP

These are GAP's Girlfriend jeans, a cult favorite for their slightly relaxed cut with a narrow ankle. I said I never would, but I've been really wanting a pair of these slightly "mom-esque" jeans (I am a mom, after all) for a while and these ones fit the bill. Plus, since they are a beautiful grey color, I feel like it's less repetitive since you're not just buying another pair of blue jeans. I would pair these with a blouse and jacket for work, or a cozy sweater for the weekend. 

Spring Color Series: Millennial Pink

Spring Color Series: Millennial Pink | Writing Between Pauses

Millennial pink has been on the radar for at least the last year. I definitely noticed a sharp uptick in people dying their hair a really pretty shade of pastel pink last year. As someone with naturally almost-black hair who, even with professional help can't bleach my hair beyond orange, I was really, really jealous. I also remember reading an article around the beginning of last summer about how millennial pink was "the" color of millennials.

It's a pretty fair assessment. Look at the packaging for Kim Kardashian's KKW Beauty line. The packaging for Fenty, too, is a pale, pale pink. We're seeing pale pink--and all it's variations--in packaging, flat lays, everything. Rose, dusty pink, rose gold... they all fall into the millennial pink family and it's hot

To read last week's take on forest green, click here

Inspiration

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Pink Collage
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Pink Pantone

Millennial pink is an almost universally flattering color because it's come in so many shades. Can't pull of baby pink? Try something a little more lavender. Want to go bright? Millennial pink has your back. I mean, look at these Pantone swatches! Prefer a little more coral? It's there too! And this is just a single screenshot of what Pantone considers millennial pink. There are so many options! How isn't this a perfect color for Spring? 

Top 3 Picks

Adidas Gazelle
Jacket
ColourPop

1. adidas Gazelle Shoes

When I was around 12, I wanted nothing more than a pair of Adidas Gazelle shoes with pink stripes. My mom got me white and blue ones instead (shout out, mom). But I'll be honest: these ones really tug my heart strings. Millennial pink!? Suede?! I'm in. I'm there. Paired with rolled up skinny jeans and a plain t-shirt or sweater and you've got the cutest outfit on the block. You're welcome. (And they're only $60! Why do I remember them being more expensive?) 

2. Snap Button Denim Jacket from Forever 21

I've been looking for a denim jacket for ages. They tend to bounce between too fitted and too boxy. This one seems to hit the sweet spot (at least on the model) and, of course, the millennial pink color makes it perfect for dressing your standard late winter outfit for spring. Over dresses and tights? Yes. Layered with a sweater and leggings? Absolutely. 

3. ColourPop Super Shock Highlighter in Parallel

I knew I wanted to include one makeup item here--and let me tell you, millennial pink is way easier than forest green when it comes to makeup! This ColourPop Highlighter is only $8, to start, and the sunset-reminiscent millennial pink color makes it perfect for almost all skin types. (I've seen it used as a blush too and it's absolutely beautiful!) The perfect way to add a pop of pink on even your dreariest days. 

Spring Color Series: Forest Green

Spring Color Series: Forest Green

When I first set out to take on this Spring color series, I wasn't sure exactly how I was going to do it. I knew I wanted to include not just style, but beauty items; and I knew I wanted it to be more than some kind of wish list post (which I love, but aren't the most original). I had a hard time really pinning down what I wanted this post to look like, but after a lot of hard work... I got there. (And it should be said: I'm writing this Tuesday evening. Since November, my posts have been scheduled 1-2 weeks in advance, so I've really been spending time thinking on this one!  

Color Series: Forest Green Inspiration

Forest green, to me, is a neutral. As a color, it can vary from the darkest shades to the lighter, olive tones, but it always recalls a deep, dark forest. It's a natural color and one that it almost universally flattering. Green has always been one of my favorite colors. Forest green pairs well with gray, pink, white and cream, black, and coral. 

Inspiration

When it came to finding inspiration, I picked anything that really inspired me to incorporate forest green into my style for the upcoming season. You know I love woodsy chic anything, so the forest green enamel mugs are right up my alley.

I'm looking to add forest green curtains to my living room to go with my lavender-gray wall, so decor pieces have been inspiring me lately. In terms of fashion for spring, forest green is a great color for cable knit sweaters; for those of us who have late summers, we're still wearing sweaters into April and May, and they pair well with skinny jeans and ankle boots. I think it's safe to say the world has been obsessed with palm print in the last few  years & it's probably not going away; I'm on the hunt, personally, for a palm print scarf that doesn't break the bank. 

(Click each photo for their source!) 

Top 5 Picks

Too Faced
Body Shop
ModCloth
Fenty
H&M

Now, what 5 items are perfect for adding to your spring wardrobe or makeup collection to add some forest green? Let's talk. 

1. Too Faced Chocolate Gold Palette

Controversially, I love Too Faced palettes; I know some don't love their eye shadow formulation, but I find it's easiest for me to use. This palette is particularly attractive to me--and that pop of forest green in the corner is making me think of ways to save up money for this palette! This palette also contains other complimentary colors, and a super bright pink for the days you aren't feeling so green. On my Spring Color Series Pinterest board, I pinned some ways to wear forest green eyeshadow. 

2. Fenty Beauty Mattemoiselle Plush Matte Lipstick in Midnight Wasabi

It's a green lipstick. You heard me: a green lipstick. Midnight Wasabi from Fenty is really causing waves and for good reason: it looks good on nearly everybody. It's a grey-toned green, almost olive, but still forest-y. And it's really pretty on. If you want to be adventurous with green with spring, Midnight Wasabi is where it's at. 

3. ModCloth's With Only a Wink Dress

It's been a long time since I genuinely wanted a dress from ModCloth so bad it hurt--but this dress is definitely giving me fashion-blogging-circa-2012 vibes. The lattice panel across the shoulders. The high waist with a bow. The floaty skirt. And in a toned down forest green, it's perfect for any special occasion (like a spring wedding!) and with a sweater & tights, you can wear it to work too. Once summer is here, a light cardigan on top and your favorite wedges make it a great weekend dress. Listen, I just planned this dress for every season; it's clearly the best. 

4. A Classic Fine Knit Sweater from H&M

I wear sweaters almost constantly. I rarely leave the house without a cardigan and my go-to outfit is jeans, ankle boots, and a sweater. So obviously, this sweater from H&M had to make the list; it's a classic shape with no surprises. Have you ever spotted a cute, lightweight sweater in a department store, walked over to it, and discovered it has some random cut out on the back, or some weird design on it? Yeah, that's the worst. That's why I like this sweater: it's the perfect, low-key sweater that you can wear casual on the weekends (jeans & ankle boots, natch) and style up for work (add a blazer & a pencil skirt). Plus, it's just under $20. That's a score! 

5. The Body Shop's Fuji Green Tea Exfoliating Scrub

You deserve a treat. A forest green treat. A green tea treat. I love the Body Shop & I recently found out they are officially cruelty-free again (a.k.a., no longer owned by a parent company that tests on animals). That means we can all enjoy their products guilt free. Like this Fuji Green Tea exfoliating scrub: forest green and smelling delicious, it gives you a much needed pick-me-up. Plus, we're all going to be wearing sleeveless tops soon (believe it and it'll be true, right?), which means we need to make sure our skin is looking snatched. 


Have something of the forest green variety to add? Let me know on Twitter & don't forget to check out my Spring Color Series board on Pinterest, where I've pinned all my inspiration, favorite items, and more!