OOTD: Pencil Skirts and Stripes…

OOTD: Pencil Skirts and Stripes…

Good Morning and Happy Monday, everyone!

It’s hard to get back to work this early in the morning- especially when most of my weekend was spent working on other projects, too- because I don’t really feel particularly rested or recharged from my “days off”. Although I’m so excited and so grateful to be productive and in demand for so many different things right now- I have to admit it’s going to feel very nice to come home after work tonight, put on some sweatpants, wrap myself up in blankets and just do absolutely nothing for a few hours!

I digress- this past weekend saw me sneak a *little* time away (35 minutes, to be exact!) to take a brisk stroll in Thompson, Connecticut’s historical district- where I struck a pose outside one of my favorite abandoned buildings in the area. This dilapidated mansion, left to essentially rot by the owner/architect who purchased it to fix up years and years ago- and then gave up shortly thereafter- is one of my dream projects. I’d love to build it back up and restore it to it’s former glory if ever given the opportunity. It’s breathtaking- even in it’s current state.

Since I was in “work mode” while out and about- I was sporting one of my favorite olive green, horizontal striped pencil skirts with a black, long-sleeved thermal top, black tights- and a black, bell-sleeved sweater/cape since it’s been ridiculously chilly as of late.

I know my Winter wardrobe consists almost entirely of black, grays and dark browns- and it has for years- but I’ve been trying to incorporate more colors into the mix without going overboard (I know neon is really in right now- but I need some time to prepare myself before I just jump right into something like that!) 

This green, while definitely on the safer, neutral/Earth tone side- still breaks up the dreariness of my otherwise all-black ensemble and makes me look less like I’m going to a funeral and more like I’m going to a meeting on a painfully frigid day.

Also, this cape/cardigan combo is another piece from my closet I love to wear as often as possible this time of year. The buttons are so big and over-the-top- and it’s so unbelievably cozy!

Over the next couple of days, I’ll be sharing some of my upcoming projects (more in-depth, of course-) as well as a really delicious potato recipe before the end of the week reaches us and I prepare to launch into my birthday celebration(s) next week- so be sure to check back for all the tasty goodness!

Until then, here’s wishing you all a wonderful start to your week! I hope it’s an easy and painless one for you!

xx

– Ashley –

OOTD: Let’s Talk Shop…

OOTD: Let’s Talk Shop…

Good Morning and Happy Friday, everyone!

What a busy week it’s been- and while Friday nights are typically the perfect time to unwind with a bubble bath, a glass of wine and some serious binge-watching on Netflix- my schedule rages on through this weekend!

Tonight after I leave my office, I’ll be throwing on a pair of comfortable shoes and heading over to Down The Road Beer Co. in Everett to catch a set by Salem Wolves (who are unveiling their very own IPA they’ve created with Down The Road!) and Radio Compass as part of indie617’s newest venture- indieBrews! I love good bands and beer- so this is one collaboration I’m particularly excited for.

And then tomorrow, it’s off to Northampton to get started on my work with the lovely folks at Paintbox Theatre before I meet up with friends for dinner and drinks.

With all the traveling and commitments- I don’t have much time to change my wardrobe and usually have to wear something that is both comfortable and chic as I maneuver my way between work, meetings, parties, and events throughout the day/night- all while making sure I stay warm since it’s very, very cold where I live right now.

My current go-to ensemble with busy days like the ones I’ve been having lately are lightweight cotton dresses paired with heavier cardigans or chunky sweaters, thermal tights/leggings, and either ankle boots or modest heels to give me a little more height and accentuate my legs.

When I’m sporting a cardigan over a dress, I tend to only button the very top one so that the sweater doesn’t make me look “boxy” or sloppy. By leaving one button fastened, the sweater frames my body like a cape and doesn’t stifle my shape. It’s very flattering- and keeps me warm!

And, side note- but how lovely is this wool cardigan? I’ve had it for a few years now- and the design is inspired by some of the older Chanel cardigans of the same colors/cuts. It’s very cozy- and matches nearly everything in my Winter wardrobe!

Finally, there’s two things- apart from my keys, wallet and phone- that I never leave home without during these frigid New England months when my schedule is packed- and those things are a heavy beanie hat and my trusted Kate Spade notebook holder so that I can keep all of my paperwork, notes, ideas, etc. in one easy, convenient and cute carrying case.

And as for the hat? I think the little poof ball at the top really ties the whole thing together- don’t you?

All in all, this outfit makes me feel cute, confident and toasty warm- and is easy to wear to my office, post-work events, or to my plans with friends/family out on the town since it’s not *too* dressy but still looks sophisticated enough to command a little respect and attention!

But for now, I’ve got to get some work done before I head out and get started on my very busy weekend. You can follow MY INSTAGRAM for updates from the road as I go!

Here’s hoping you all have a wonderful couple of days ahead- and I’ll be back on Monday!

xx

– Ashley –

OOTD: For The Birds…

Good Morning and Happy Monday, everyone!

As you’re reading this, I’m flying across the county to meet my BFF in Henderson, Nevada and embark on a week-long vacation in Las Vegas and San Diego! This post in particular was drafted yesterday- in-between packing and some prior engagements.

One of those prior engagements was my good friend Stef’s bridal shower and brunch earlier in the afternoon at Galliford’s Restaurant in Mendon (right next to Southwick Zoo!) The gathering was so much fun- and thankfully indoors- since it was a lot hotter out than any of us had anticipated!

That’s really the only downside to early/mid September here in New England- the temperatures are pretty unpredictable. Some days are stifling hot, others are brisk and chilly- and it’s hard to decide when it’s appropriate to wear a sun dress or a sweater since it can be raining and cold one minute- and then sunny and sweltering the next!

I opted for this billowy, loose-fitting, button-up chiffon shirt to stay cool (while still looking dressed up) with a cute crane print that I had recently picked up at Primark. I paired it with a simple pair of black slacks and black flats- since I felt the shirt was the focal point of the entire ensemble!

My main goal, of course- was to stay comfortable while I sipped mimosas, nibbled French toast, and ooh’d and aaah’d as Stef opened all the wonderful gifts that had been brought for her as she gets ready to embark on her new ‘Wife Life’ in just a few short weeks (and also while we ironed out the details for her Bachelorette Party!) so this blouse was exceptionally convenient- both outdoors in the sun and inside where we’d retreated to eat and enjoy the air conditioning.

I think my favorite part of this shirt, however- is the black ribbon tie around the high collar. I’d tied it into a loose bow (that thankfully stayed in place all day!) and I thought it completed the look. I felt very prim and proper- even though my friends and I are anything but!

And for those of you wondering how much this cute number was? $10. That’s right- just $10! What a steal, right?

But now, Sin City awaits! I’ll be posting updates from the road- both on here and my social media- throughout the week, so be sure to check in to follow along!

Enjoy the rest of your Monday, everyone! Here’s hoping you all have a wonderful week!

xx

– Ashley –

OOTD: Midweek Pinstripes

No, despite first glances- I did not cosplay as a mob boss the other day while I lounged around Bunker Hill Monument with my friend. The outfit pictured above was my post-work-pre-dinner-plans ensemble for when the weather is hot, dry- and I don’t have enough time to change into shorts and a t-shirt after darting out of my office to beat traffic and meet with my party at the designated location. The pinstriped capris, courtesy of Primark– and the black patent leather Steve Madden heels say “I’m a professional just trying to keep cool, comfortable and chic in the Summer heat”- while the black tank top and wide-brimmed hat from Jack & Lucy say “I’m going to make him an offer he can’t refuse,” or “leave the gun, take the cannoli.”

All joking aside- this is one of my favorite Summertime workday outfits because of how comfortable it is. When it’s as hot or as humid out as it’s been lately- I just want lightweight, breezy and breathable fabrics that let me move around and perform my job with ease- but I also want colors and patterns that are easily interchangeable from daytime to nighttime if I make plans after work and can’t stop at my place to raid my closet for a different aesthetic in-between engagements. Pinstripes, like polka dots- are really easy to work with and style around!

I felt like a savvy professional walking around Charlestown in this outfit during the day- and still thought I pulled off a put together and cute, fun-with-friends-appropriate look when I stopped for dinner at Sweet Rice on Main Street for some steamed vegetable gyoza and the best Pad Thai in town later on in the evening. Save your pencil skirts and frocks, ladies and gentlemen. Right now I’m all about a sharply tailored pair of trousers that show off just the right amount of leg and a practical, yet classic pair of heels to give me some height and perfect my posture!

And while I could have easily accessorized this outfit with a rose gold necklace or some bangles to give what little skin that was exposed a bit of extra flashiness- I let the hat speak for itself. It’s really the only accessory I need when I go out because it pretty much draws all the attention to itself!

xx

– Ashley –