Weekly Capsule 19.2: Minimal Effort

gray tee navy wide leg jeans flat sandals by 14 shades of grey

As much as I’d like to be a minimalist both in terms of aesthetics and as a consumer, I don’t think I can. Take this outfit, for example – some girls can look striking and chic in it, but on me, it just looks boring and like I’m out of clean clothes. I don’t have the right look to pull off minimalism; I need some patterns or colors. Besides, I know I would get fed up very quickly if I dress like this everyday. So I guess the best I can do is to be smart about it – add the right pops to the outfits without going overboard, and shop for the right things to avoid being bored by my closet.

gray tee navy wide leg jeans by 14 shades of greygray tee navy wide leg jeans flat sandals by 14 shades of grey

And this outfit is not completely boring as it looks. Two points of interest – one, this necklace, which I made myself from a tag on an old t-shirt and two, kitty photo bomb (I have no shame about using cute animals as accessories in my photos :p)

gray tee navy wide leg jeans flat sandals by 14 shades of greygray tee bar necklace by 14 shades of grey

T-shirt: Uniqlo, Jeans: Old Navy, Sandals: gift, Necklace: self-made


Weekly Capsule 19.1: Summer Is Coming

blue striped shirt navy wide leg jeans beige sandals by 14 shades of grey

It’s stupid hot this week. I’m talking about upper 90’s most days, with heat index coming close to 110. So there are not going to be a lot of interesting outfits in this week’s capsule, just my baggiest, most breathable clothes in cool neutral shades, and minimal accessories. When it is that hot, my brain really can’t handle bright colors or loud patterns. Somehow they make everything seem hotter. And it’s not as if I had bright colors or loud patterns in my closet anyway.

I also figured out a way to photograph outfits these days – get up 15 minutes earlier and take photos while it’s still cool enough outside and my outfit still looks (more or less) crisp. I used to do that back in LA when I had 2+ hours of commute and couldn’t get back in time while it was still light out, but since I moved home, I’d gotten into the habit of taking photos in the afternoon. I forgot how much easier it was to take photos before work.

blue striped shirt navy wide leg jeans by 14 shades of greyblue striped shirt navy wide leg jeans beige sandals by 14 shades of grey

navy wide leg jeans beige sandals by 14 shades of greyblue striped shirt navy wide leg jeans watch by 14 shades of grey

Shirt: Mango, Jeans: Old Navy, Sandals: Clarks, Watch: Swatch


SIA Inspiration: Richard E. Miller

For this week’s SIA, I picked “The Green Cage” by American Impressionist, Richard E. Miller:

I’ve never heard of Miller before, but when a reader, Mike, emailed me about this painting, I thought it would make a perfect inspiration for some late spring/early summer outfits, with its soft shades of green, pink, white, and purple. Yes, it’s by a male artist, and we are trying to feature more female artists here, but Miller was known for his sunny, idyllic depictions of women, so I figure it’s still a good addition to SIA. Also, it’s a part of Akron Art Museum’s “Inside Out” program, which displays replicas of the museum’s collection around the city. You can see the painting on location here – how cool is that?

So remember to send me your outfit photos and/or posts by next Monday, May 18th. Enjoy!


Top 10 Round-Up

It was our Labor Day holiday last week, which is why posting has been a little sparse this week (I usually schedule my posts a week ahead of time, so when I worked only two days, there wouldn’t be a lot of outfits to post). In the meantime, I thought I’d do a round-up of my Top 10 challenge:

The MVP – black pleated midi skirt (worn 5 times):

striped tee black pleated skirt beige sandals by 14 shades of greychambray polka dot shirt black pleated skirt mustard heeled oxfords by 14 shades of grey

watercolor tee black pleated skirt black pumps by 14 shades of greywhite lace tee black pleated skirt brown heeled loafers by 14 shades of grey

The runner-ups (3 wears each) – the heeled oxfords, the heeled loafers, and the cat brooch:

black midi skirt yellow heeled oxfords by 14 shades of greywhite v-neck button up black skirt yellow heeled oxfords by 14 shades of grey

navy ikat shirt black skirt yellow heeled oxfords by 14 shades of greychambray shirt navy blazer cat brooch by 14 shades of grey

navy ikat shirt navy linen blazer boyfriend jeans by 14 shades of greylace t-shirt plaid pants by 14 shades of grey

mustard plaid dress blue blazer brown heeled loafers by 14 shades of greyplaid pants brown heeled loafers by 14 shades of grey

The blue striped shirt, the black striped top, the polka dot chambray, the plaid dress, and the necklace all get worn twice:

striped shirt polka dot skirt black heels by 14 shades of greyblue striped shirt white jeans by 14 shades of grey

watercolor tee black jeans by 14 shades of greymustard plaid dress blue belt black heels by 14 shades of grey

DSC_0105polka dot chambray shirt gray cardigan black jeans by 14 shades of grey

The only surprise here is the polka dot skirt, which is one of the first pieces I picked and yet only got worn once. It’s not that it doesn’t fit my style; it’s more likely that I just plain forgot about it. Another piece I should’ve added is my navy blazer – but then it’s not my style so much as “I don’t have any other blazer that fits me this well”. Anyway, it’s been a fun challenge, and it definitely helps me see my style more clearly. Big thanks to Sarah for putting it together!


Weekly Capsule 18.2: Repeat

navy shirt pink skirt brown heels by 14 shades of grey

When I spring-cleaned my closet last month, I sorted my skirts into three piles – the “to be donated”, which don’t fit me/my current style anymore; the “work horses”, which I wear to work (and are all black/navy and pleated, incidentally); and finally, the “fun” skirts, which are skirts that I still like but are a bit fussy for work. Skirts like this one, basically. I love the pleats, and pink is a good color to add to my closet, but I feel it is too girly, so I don’t reach for it as often as I want. For this, I tried to balance it out with a simple shirt and necklace. I’ve worn something similar to this before, but there is something about the navy + pink combination that I really like.

navy shirt pink skirt by 14 shades of greynavy shirt pink skirt brown heels by 14 shades of grey

pink skirt brown heels by 14 shades of greynavy shirt silver necklace by 14 shades of grey

Shirt: Mango, Necklace: Forever21, Skirt: hand-me-down, Shoes: local shop


Weekly Capsule 18.1 & SIA: The Scream

navy shirt burgundy jeans black pumps by 14 shades of grey

I was in a bind for this week’s SIA. You see, the inspiration, Edvard Munch’s classic masterpiece, “The Scream”, features quite a lot of orange and yellow, but I have no orange or yellow pieces in my closet that would work for warm temperatures. My mustard jeans might, but I’ve already worn it with this shirt. In the end, I decided on these burgundy pair and added a touch of yellow/brown with my necklace. It’s not exact, but I think the outfit captures the dark atmosphere of the painting. But then I realized that I totally forgot to do the pose! Ah well. I’m sure at least one of the lovely SIA participants would do it. Just remember to check Jess’ blog to find out.

navy shirt burgundy jeans black pumps by 14 shades of greynavy shirt burgundy jeans black pumps by 14 shades of grey

navy shirt necklace by 14 shades of greyburgundy jeans black pumps by 14 shades of grey

navy shirt burgundy jeans black pumps by 14 shades of grey

Shirt: Mango, Jeans: Pull&Bear, Necklace & Shoes: local shops


Weekly Capsule 17.4: Age of Ultron

navy ikat shirt navy linen boyfriend jeans black pumps by 14 shades of grey

So last Sunday I saw The Avengers: Age of Ultron (it came out a week earlier in Vietnam). I enjoyed it, but the story definitely isn’t as tight as the first one, and it doesn’t leave as much resonance with me as the first one either. I think one of the problems is that there are all these new characters – I understand why they were added, but I couldn’t care less about Quicksilver or Scarlet Witch or Vision. Or even Ultron, for that matter. Loki makes a much more interesting antagonist, I think.

But that’s to be expected. Out of all the Marvel sequels so far, I think only Captain America: The Winter Soldier has been as good, if not better than the first one, because it’s so different. But, if I know my trilogies well, they tend to bounce back with the last one, so I’m looking forward to Phase 3.

navy ikat shirt navy linen blazer boyfriend jeans by 14 shades of greynavy ikat shirt navy linen blazer boyfriend jeans by 14 shades of grey

navy ikat shirt navy linen blazer cat brooch by 14 shades of greynavy ikat shirt navy linen blazer boyfriend jeans black pumps by 14 shades of grey

Shirt: C-Wonder, Blazer: Atmosphere, Jeans: Charlotte Russe, Shoes & Brooch: local shops

My looks this week – blue, blue, and more blue:

white v-neck button up black skirt yellow heeled oxfords by 14 shades of greynavy ikat shirt black skirt yellow heeled oxfords by 14 shades of grey

mustard plaid dress blue blazer brown heeled loafers by 14 shades of greynavy ikat shirt navy linen blazer boyfriend jeans black pumps by 14 shades of grey