Tag Archives: nautical

Week 16 :: of jazz, bye bye blues, and Old Navy

[Click on the video above before you read this.  Do it.  It’ll be fun.  I promise.]

I remember growing up in the Philippines and watching Danny Kaye dance his way out of mayhem, enjoying the kibitzing between Jerry Lewis and Dean Martin, and devouring the complete collection of original Nancy Drew books in hardback, specially shipped from the U.S.

Before we’d even immigrated to this country, then, I already had some pretty distinct – albeit dated – notions of what America was all about.

Imagine my chagrin when we moved here and I didn’t get the welcome wagon, the poodle skirts or the apple pie.  It was the 80s so I was inundated instead with Pacman, Rocky III, and MTV.  Not only was it a culture shock, it was an era shock as well.

I’ve obviously survived my trauma none the worse for wear but I do admit to still having a soft spot for all things vintage.  (Remind me to tell you about my year of wearing nothing but authentic 50s dresses purchased via eBay.) And nothing screams vintage to me more than nautical outfits.

Fave Stores Friday

Okay, that might be stretching a bit, but you can’t deny that dressing like a fashionable sailor has been around for decades, as shown here, here and here.  It never goes out of style.  So when Old Navy (Heh.  Navy.  Get it?) pulls out their summer repertoire of striped pieces, you know I’m getting me some.

Fave Stores Friday

I no longer believe that horizontal stripes make me look wide.  Had I still swallowed that baloney, I wouldn’t even have tried this dress on, much less have purchased it.  Horizontal stripes aren’t the enemy.  You just have to know how to work with them.  It’s really all about fit, cut, fabric and attitude.  This dress hits all the right notes in all those categories.  I feel slim, modest, cool and sassy, all at the same time.

Fave Stores Friday

For accessories, I chose a long cobalt necklace (blue, anyone?) and strappy wedges.  Both pieces go a long way in keeping the outfit current without competing overtly with the nautical vibe.  It’s actually quite a versatile dress if you think on it.  As I’ve styled it, it’s very proper and work-appropriate, especially for a casual Friday.  But throw on a pair of white thong sandals, a floral scarf and a floppy hat and the dress would be perfect for a 4th of July party.

And you, my friends?  Do you do nautical?  How do you style your stripes?

:: Just the facts, ma’am ::
everything Old Navy

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Week 13 :: of pastels, stripes and trending spring

So I decided that keeping you in the dark, my friends, actually makes it harder for me to write about the outfits.  Thus, in the spirit of making my life simpler, I present to you:

Spring into Trend Week

Spring Tuesday

The pun is intentional although not necessarily apropos to this blistering heat.  I’d been wanting to address the spring trends because for once, they’re right up my alley.  In the past, I’ve gone into fashion hiatus as soon as that groundhog emerges from its burrow because I don’t do pastels and I don’t do warm weather attire.  I sequestered myself in air-conditioned rooms, threw a muffler around my neck and longed for fall to come.

This year, I’m all over trends like white on rice.  Black and white, bold stripes, florals, neon…it’s as if the style gods have listened to my plea and provided me with more choices than you can shake a stick at.  Yesterday, I utilized two trends (can you guess which ones?) and today I do the same.

Spring Tuesday

I’m loving how the deep navy and stripes of the top prove a tough counterpoint to the femininity of the pastel skinnies.  I’m also digging the fact that, although this top is a titch too heavy for the weather, it does fall nicely.  That is, the fabric is thick enough that it doesn’t cling and yet light enough so I don’t feel completely stifled wearing it.  The three-quarter length sleeve also does a lot to help keep me cool.

Spring Tuesday

I can’t really say much about pastel skinnies except to point out that mint isn’t normally a color I would gravitate toward, let alone purchase, but it does provide a fresh take on the maritime vibe.  Now this is the way pastels should operate!  No Easter bunny saccharine gooey-ness here, my friends!  And if the unorthodox combination of nautical and pastel wasn’t enough, I went ahead and finished off the look with a statement necklace and fiery-red, pointy-toed pumps for that added zing.

What about you, my friends?  Are there any spring trends you would love to or have already tried?  It needn’t actually be a trend, come to think of it.  Just something that, in your mind, signifies spring when you wear it?

:: Just the facts, ma’am ::
Top – L.L.Bean
Jeans – F21
Pumps – Anne Klein @ Community Thrift
Necklace – Charlotte Russe

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Week 6 :: of navy, tangerine and reinventing nautical

Why is it that when I think of midnight blue, I conjure up visions of able-bodied seamen and shiny, brass buttons and anchors away?  Is it because of its alternate name?  I mean, you can’t get any more obvious than “navy”, right?

Anyhow, we cap off Complementary Color Week with an unorthodox nod to the nautical.  (How’s that for back-to-back alliteration?)

cc week navy and tangerine

I’m usually leery of wearing navy because one of two things can potentially happen: you can either look really stuffy and dated and old-fashioned (think Mr. and Mrs. Howell from Gilligan’s Island) or, conversely, you can come off as a J.Crew catalog wannabe.

Since I’m neither, I think it’s totally brilliant that navy’s complementary color is tangerine.


It’s brilliant because the cheekiness of tangerine is a perfect counterpoint to the severity of navy.  Another way to skew tradition is the fact that the top – a cardi/dickie combo I’ve owned forever – feels more varsity prep than Captain Ahab.  Sure, its got shiny, gold buttons, but check out that sleeve stripe and Harry Potter-esque crest.

Also, the stripe of the false-shirt front is vertical as opposed to horizontal, which also minimizes the nod to the nautical.  Throw on a pair of tasseled oxfords, and you’ve got a juxtaposition of fashion niches that is fresh and recognizable at the same time.

Think Ralph Lauren meets Napoleon Bonaparte.


I really had fun with the theme this week.  Not only did I receive the most recognition for my sartorial efforts to date, I also made some valuable discoveries:

  • I don’t do pastel.
  • I like writing copy unhurriedly and thoughtfully the day before.
  • I feel a lot more comfortable in front of the camera when I’m not actively posing.
  • Neighborhood kids make surprisingly adept photographers in a pinch when your daughter is too busy playing teacher with other neighborhood kids.


Have a fabulous weekend, my friends!  I know I will – it’s the start of my spring break.  Finally!  Three huzzahs and a pint of Guinness for all!

:: Just the facts, ma,am ::
Top – F21
Jeans – Rewind at Kohl’s
Oxfords – Kohl’s

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