Weekly Capsule 15.4: That Silver Necklace

chambray polka dot shirt black pleated skirt mustard heeled oxfords by 14 shades of grey

The other day I saw on Tumblr a text post that says “I want to look like an Arctic Monkeys song”, and that got me thinking about how fashion can be linked to specific kinds of music. I’m not talking about entire cultures like punk or goth, but rather how some songs can conjure up  images of a certain style, you know? For example, Ray LaMontagne’s Empty always makes me think of boho lawn dresses and loose hair with flowers woven into them.

And then that got me thinking, if I were to say “I want to look like a [band/artist] song”, who would I pick? Well, Lisa Hannigan is kind of my style icon, but I wouldn’t describe my style using her music, which is a bit too folksy. I wouldn’t pick Snow Patrol either, whose sound is much too expansive (is that a word you can use to describe music? I mean the kind of the music you’d play in a stadium), not Belle & Sebastian, who is too twee, and not Kasabian, who is a bit too edgy. Then I have it: Tired Pony. Their music just the right mix: simple, streamlined, a bit hipster, a bit quirky. And the fact that they have a song called That Silver Necklace is just perfect.

Is it weird that I actually spend time thinking about this?

chambray polka dot shirt black pleated skirt by 14 shades of grey chambray polka dot shirt black pleated skirt mustard heeled oxfords by 14 shades of grey

chambray polka dot shirt black pleated skirt mustard heeled oxfords by 14 shades of grey chambray polka dot shirt silver necklace by 14 shades of grey

Shirt: Gap, Shoes & Necklace: Forever21, Skirt: thrifted

This week’s look (not very cohesive, I admit, but I like them):

striped top black midi skirt yellow heeled oxfords by 14 shades of greystriped top wool blazer black jeans brown booties by 14 shades of grey

polka dot chambray shirt gray cardigan black jeans brown booties by 14 shades of greuchambray polka dot shirt black pleated skirt mustard heeled oxfords by 14 shades of grey


Weekly Capsule 15.3: Shades Of Blue

polka dot chambray shirt gray cardigan black jeans brown booties by 14 shades of greu

Here’s what to do when there was a power outage so you couldn’t iron your shirt and you were already running late: just throw on a cardigan and move around a lot so people don’t notice the wrinkles. It works for pictures, too.

Also, this may come as a shock to you guys, but I actually have more blue than gray in my closet, despite my blog name (it was the name of a Staind album; I wouldn’t have picked it I’d known about the whole 50 Shades business. Too late to change it now.) Oh and, I’m adding this shirt to my Top 10 as well. That means I have only one more piece to go before rounding up my Top 10 picks. What’s it going to be, I wonder?

polka dot chambray shirt gray cardigan black jeans by 14 shades of greupolka dot chambray shirt gray cardigan black jeans by 14 shades of greu

polka dot chambray shirt gray cardigan necklace by 14 shades of greupolka dot chambray shirt gray cardigan black jeans by 14 shades of greu

Shirt: Gap, Cardigan: Zara, Jeans & Boots: hand-me-down, Necklace: local shop


Weekly Capsule 15.2: Autumn In Spring

striped top wool blazer black jeans brown booties by 14 shades of grey

The background looks like fall, my outfit looks like fall (I tried making it more spring-appropriate by adding the scarf, though it didn’t help), but I swear, this is what spring is like for us. Spring weather is absolutely psychotic here – last week was super warm and sunny, almost summer-like, then this week the temperature just plummeted. Also, around here the trees don’t start shedding leaves until spring, when the spring rain allows them to put forth new leaves right away, so you’ll find brown leaves on the streets of Hanoi around March – April instead of in the fall.

Anyway, this blazer: I’ve been looking for a tweed/woolen blazer since forever, but the local stores never seem to carry one, so when my mom handed this down to me, I was excited. And I was excited when the temperature dropped because that meant I could wear it now instead of waiting until next fall. But then my dad said it looked like I was wearing one of his blazers (thanks, Dad) and now I’m not so sure anymore. Is it too boxy, too big? What do you guys think?

striped top wool blazer black jeans brown booties by 14 shades of greystriped top wool blazer black jeans by 14 shades of grey

striped top wool blazer floral scarf by 14 shades of greywool blazer black jeans brown booties by 14 shades of grey

Blazer, Jeans, Scarf & Boots: hand-me-down (yeah, I’ve pretty much replaced thrifting with raiding my mom and sister’s closets), Shirt: Forever21


Weekly Capsule 15.1: A Tall Child

striped top black midi skirt yellow heeled oxfords by 14 shades of grey

This has nothing to do with the outfit, but recently, I’ve turned down an offer for a temporary but potentially exciting gig, in favor of my sometimes tedious but steadier job. Although I feel, ultimately, it was the right choice, I still wonder. Admittedly, if I took that offer, I doubt I’d be anything more than a glorified errand-girl, but it may open up doors for me… or it may not. And then, as I was wondering about this, I thought to myself, is it adulthood? Having to make decisions on your own and live with the consequences, whether you like it or not? I guess so. Once again, I have to turn to my favorite comedian, Dylan Moran, who has so many great quotes about adulthood:


And of course I never missed a chance to insert a Dylan Moran gif

OK, serious talk over. Back to the fashion: I’m adding this striped top and these oxford heels to my Top 10. The heels are a bit beat-up, but they are my favorite, so I want to give them one last hurrah before retiring them to the Big Shoebox in the Sky.

striped top black midi skirt by 14 shades of greyblack midi skirt yellow heeled oxfords by 14 shades of grey

striped top necklace by 14 shades of greystriped top black midi skirt by 14 shades of grey

Top & Shoes: Forever21, Skirt: thrifted, Necklace: local shop


SIA Inspiration: Katherine Cameron

This week’s SIA is curated by Jen, who picks this lovely watercolor painting, “Snowdrops”, by Glaswegian artist and illustrator, Katherine Cameron:

 Jen was inspired to pick this by the TV series, Outlander (I’ve heard great things, but I’m way too lazy to check out yet another series, what with Game of Thrones and Mad Men coming back). Even though snowdrops are out of season now, she believes there are enough colors and patterns here to be interpreted in an outfit, and I agree. So if you want to participate, send your outfit photos and/or post to Jen (librarianforlifestyle@gmail.com) by next Monday, April 20th. Have fun!


Weekly Capsule 14.4: Cat Lady

chambray shirt navy blazer white jeans black heels by 14 shades of grey

My brooch collection has been sadly stagnant ever since I moved home, because not a lot of people wear brooches here and there are even fewer people who sell vintage brooches. So that’s why when I saw this brooch at an accessory shop, I had to grab it right away – who knows when I’ll find another one. I know it’s not vintage, but for a self-proclaimed cat lady like me, it’s perfect, so who cares. Oh and, I’m adding it to my Top 10 as well (I have now picked two skirts, one top, one dress, and two accessories, which means I still have 4 more pieces to go.) Come on, a cat-shaped brooch? That is so me.

chambray shirt navy blazer white jeans black heels by 14 shades of greychambray shirt navy blazer white jeans by 14 shades of grey

chambray shirt navy blazer cat brooch by 14 shades of greychambray shirt navy blazer white jeans black heels by 14 shades of grey

Shirt: Esprit, Blazer: Atmosphere, Jeans: Calvin Klein, Shoes: hand-me-down, Brooch: local shop

And this week’s looks:

striped shirt polka dot skirt black heels by 14 shades of greymustard plaid dress blue belt black heels by 14 shades of grey

blue striped shirt white jeans brown sandals by 14 shades of greychambray shirt navy blazer white jeans black heels by 14 shades of grey


Weekly Capsule 14.3: Adventures In Shopping

blue striped shirt white jeans brown sandals by 14 shades of grey

I miss thrifting. We do have thrift stores in Hanoi, but they vary wildly in terms of price and quality, and there is no organization like Goodwill, so it is a process of trial and error to find a trusty thrift shop, which I don’t have the time for. I know I’ve said it plenty of times since moving home, but I’ve never really articulated what exactly that I miss about thrifting. Then the other day, while I was looking through my brooch collection, I was reminded of when and where I got each of them, and I realized – I miss the sense of adventure that comes with thrifting. Now when I shop, I usually check the store’s inventory online first, then I go to the store, get what I want, and that’s that. With thrift stores, you have to do a bit of digging, and you never know what treasure you’re going to find.

But then again, maybe it’s a good thing that thrift stores are less accessible here, because I have enough problem with shopping as it is :P

And besides, sometimes you can find treasure while shopping at normal stores. I went accessory-shopping the other day, intending only to buy a couple of brooches (you’ll see them soon), but then I saw this necklace. It’s quite similar to this necklace that Jen picked for my “Jewelry Idea” Pinterest board, so of course I snatched it up. I’m including it in my Top 10 pieces too.

blue striped shirt white jeans by 14 shades of greyblue striped shirt white jeans brown sandals by 14 shades of grey

white jeans brown sandals by 14 shades of greyblue striped shirt copper necklace by 14 shades of grey

Shirt: Mango, Jeans: Calvin Klein, Necklace: local shop, Sandals: gift