Polar Express

Polar Express

It’s been quite a fast and excited holiday season so far! I’ve barely had a chance to catch up after an amazing and much needed respite in the tropics and heading right back into work full steam ahead before Christmas. Coming back from a island vacation means fasting the harsh reality that freezing temperatures are here and here to stay. The only thing that’s a positive is that that means layers and more looks.

Processed with VSCO with e3 preset

I  got a chance to work with both Express and Banana Republic to come up with a winter look that works perfectly as a transition to these colder days ahead. I’ve been loving these dark floral patterned prints as a way to nod to fall but in a color palette more appropriate for winter. They’re great for layered with dark tees as well! This shirt pairs perfectly with these black fitted black chinos from Banana Republic Factory.

I  cannot stress how great these pants fit! Slim but not too slim, and give a lot of shape through the hips and back! I  think it’s easy to go for jeans when it gets colder, but a great fitting pant should be the next best option sitting in your closet.

Processed with VSCO with e3 preset

An easy bomber, this one is TopMan, in a charcoaled navy color, makes for an easy throw on peace to make this outfit more nighttime friendly. I’m looking forward to digging into my closet for more winter looks with plenty of layers and patterns coming soon.

Happy Friday,

TW

Out & About

Out & About

2018 is proving to be quite overwhelming, wouldn’t you say? It’s been a pretty heavy year full of social and political issues rising to the surface on what seems like a daily basis, I mean, we’re living in a time where Colton is the next Bachelor!

Jokes aside, in times like this, its sometimes nice to have reflection on something positive. Just a few years ago, I wasn’t even aware that today is National Coming Out Day, set aside to celebrate the process of coming out in the LGBT community and at a time like this, I  figured it’s nice to take a day from all the negativity we’re seeing and appreciate that I’m fortunate enough to be out and have so many great friends and a loving family that support me no matter what.

Coming out is a very personal experience, and no two stories are the same, but they are all equally important! For some people it’s painless, others, traumatizing, but each is just as brave as the next and deserves to celebrate that part of their journey of identity and self acceptance.

Let’s face it, coming out isn’t a one time gig, it happens many times, over many years. Even in 2018, given everything we hear and see on the news, it’s not exactly a welcoming environment to come out. There is a still a lot of ignorance out there, and I’ve always admired my peers who handle it with grace. I’m glad we have days like to day to celebrate such a big personal milestone for LGBT people. So thank you to all of those who support their friends and remember that you play an important role in the process. Here’s to appreciating everyone celebrating having come out, or those finding courage to come out in the future.

More posts to come soon, thanks for reading!

TW

 

 

Suiting Up

Suiting Up

Mayday, mayday! Truly it’s a crisis that all May long I’ve been so swamped and haven’t had anytime to post. I figured it’s better late than never and I  finally have the time (and looks) to share some spring style!

In my line of work, wearing a suit everyday has never been and probably never will be a part of my requirements. With that said, I  always envied my dad for having the chance to wear a suit and tie each day. There’s something about a suit that says “I  run sh*t” and it’s an attitude I’ve started to adopt with more work confidence.

CallieCraigWAS05152018-41

Since taking on more responsibility, I  figured a spring suit would be the perfect blend of business and casual. With a spring-summer suit, choosing khaki was a no brainer. Khaki suits work for this time of year because they can go with anything.

Need it for a wedding? Check. Need to use the blazer as a sport coat? Check. Need to have a pair of khakis on hand? Check. Although you can use these pieces separately for so many events, my goal is to try to wear it as a set the most. In this look, I’ve given it a springtime twist with a floral print from Zara. By choosing white sneakers and holding off on a tie, it feels more laid back.

CallieCraigWAS05152018-48

The most important tip of all though has to be fit. Having a suit custom built just for you is definitely more of a splurge. This piece is from Banana Republic Factory and was 40% off, a deal I couldn’t refuse. (Pieces here and here, and discount is even better now) Upon trying it on in store, I  knew the blazer worked, but the pants needed some help. Investing in having the pants tailored was a must.

Suiting up requires you to invest in something that’s going to be used over and over again, that can be mixed and matched with a lot of your existing pieces and to wear with the best accessory of all, confidence!

-TW

Garden Guy

Garden Guy

Remember when I said I’d be manifesting spring through my wardrobe…. well it’s not working. (case in point, it snowed on Monday :/) Although it might not be as warm as I’d like, I’m still feeling inspired by florals with another look, similar to the one from last week. 

Shooting these pictures at Garflield Park Conservatory, with hundreds of botanical elements surrounding me, was a fun and new take on camouflage for me. To me it speaks to a larger concept when it comes to my fashion choices, wanting to blend in while simultaneously standing out. 

Processed with VSCO with e3 preset

The lesson here is to work on finding a personal style that feels uniquely you, while also following more conventional style rules. (if you so choose) I  always have to keep in mind that fashion is only fun if I allow it to be. With such a “loud” print comes a lot of responsibility, mostly in the form of confidence. It’s the best accessory you can possibly wear with any outfit. My advice is to take a risk and be bold, especially as we (try) to transition from the winter blues and into spring hues.

Keep the base of your outfit, in my case jeans and brown leather boots, simple, so the print is the focus. Florals have really been inspiring me lately, but so have other colors. I’m excited to share more spring looks as it slowly warms up.

Happy Friday,

TW

Flower Child

Flower Child

I know what you’re thinking… flowers for spring… groundbreaking. All joking aside, flowers do feel pretty groundbreaking, especially when it’s still snowing here in April. Again, I’ve got to manifest spring in my wardrobe in order to get in the spirit.

This shot was actually taken at Chicago’s Garfield Park Conservatory because it’s one of the only places in full of florals right now. Usually I’m wearing florals that are more Hawaiian inspired or pastel in nature. This past winter, I started investing in what I considered “winter florals”. That basically means the base of each print is darker, like black, navy or even this evergreen.

Processed with VSCO with e3 preset

I’ve found this approach to be a good one. I snagged three floral print tops from Zara over the holidays, on sale no less, that I’ve been able to hold onto all season long. I’m loving this new take on florals because it feels a bit more modern. Each print (you’ll see the others here soon) goes with everything from dark jeans to cords, and of course your summer shorts! I’ve found some great options here, here and here.

In city like Chicago, I’m made it my mission to make even the most trendy of prints or styles work for as long as possible, even florals. Think about longevity, the material, and how many pairings you can make with a floral print top. Hoping this style gets your spring wardrobe to blossom!

TW

Spring Forward, Fall Back

Spring Forward, Fall Back

As I mentioned earlier this month, spring is all supposed to be all about rebirth and having that awakening that would cure me of that funk February put me in. The month of March is almost over and let’s just say… I’m still in need of that cure.

We recently just experienced Daylight Savings Time and the saying goes “Spring Forward, Fall Back.” I’ve come to realize that’s basically the way I’ve been feeling recently…. falling back while trying to spring forward. I keep asking myself, how can I  stop falling… and the simple answer is… I can’t. Falling is a part of the process.

Embracing this mantra has really come to help me succeed professionally. Over the past year, I “fell” so many times as I struggled to find meaning and purpose in a job that wasn’t working for me. It was finally when I  fell the hardest that I started to spring forward and find a new path.

Now that I’ve gained great professional security, the other component of this is social security of course. (The harder of the two) I  find it so much harder to accept the falls that will come with making new connections, friends and dating. For anyone else who has had difficulties in similar areas, just know that sometimes falling only means you have another chance to get right back up.

Right now I’m feeling a little like I can’t get up, and quite frankly, like I don’t really want to, when it comes to social media. I’ve touched on this topic before but it can never be said enough. I’ve noticed myself withdrawing from posting and viewing Instagram as much because it’s all becoming too much! The constant oversharing, the daily night cream posts, the templates on your favorite things, I’m loosing my mind!

With a place like Instagram, it feels like there’s a lot of noice, but no one’s really talking. I’m working to step back on the daily mind suck of perfection I’m seeing online and focusing on the voice within to spring forward these next few months. I’ve been reminded recently that posts like these are helpful for others just as they are for myself so as always, thanks for reading along!

Life is too short to live in inauthentically, falls are going to happen, it’s about how we get up that helps us spring forward.

-TW

De-Briefing

De-Briefing

One of my favorite things about fashion and clothes, is that with each new step in life, comes a new stylish privilege. Moving to Chicago from Florida meant getting a new coat, snow boats, and other winter friendly items. With a new job, came the valid excuse to finally get a work bag or in my case a briefcase. Ever since I could drive, I wish that I could have a bag to house keys, phone, wallet, and other essentials that wasn’t a purse or high school backpack. In Chicago and in my travels, I’ve seen so many great bags, backpacks and briefcases out there that have given me serious bag envy. Today I’m “de-breifing” you on the best bags and where to find them.

Briefcase:

Sometimes when you know a brand that kills it, it’s hard to go anywhere else. Fossil is that brand for me when it comes to leather! My bag(shown) is an older model but when it came time to find a work bag, I  only needed to check out Fossil! For your first work bag, black or dark leather is best. A lighter leather will eventually darker, keep that in mind! Similar style here. 

IMG_6689.JPG

Back Packs:

I’m seriously loving the fact that backpacks are no longer just made for the hallways of high school with Jansport emblazoned on the back. Leather backpacks feel like they’re everywhere, and my favorites are from Coach.

Although I  don’t have a a leather backpack now, it’s on my fashion bucket list.

Travel:

I  remember back in the 6th grade, walking past the TUMI store and seeing a backpack that I was ready to die for. $250 later, the bag was mine and lasted me 4 years. The point of this anecdote is that TUMI is a great place to look for a travel bag needs. Look for brands that either have a great warranty package, since travel bags are put through the ringer. Lululemon also has a great travel bag my friend recently turned me onto! Similar Style for Tumi. 

Tip

Customize your look by monogramming your bag or adding a tag (my friend gifted mine from Coach) which is a super fun way to add a personal touch to your bag or backpack! Many bag companies can monogram for you, but so can many local shops.

Alrighty, maybe that wasn’t a “brief” post, but it sure was helpful, right? Now you know what to grab next time you need a bag! Enjoy the first week of Spring, hopefully it’s warmer than mine is here in Chicago!

-TW