Basic Building: Birdies The Starling Loafer

Birdies The Starling Loafer

Let’s get right to it: I AM OBSESSED WITH THESE SHOES.

We do a lot of entertaining at my house. Nothing formal, but there’s always a lot of wine and many cheeseboards. Nothing makes me happier than challenging my inner Ina, turning on the fireplace, playing music, and hanging out with friends around the kitchen island.

There’s real magic in opening your home and feeding the people you love. Over the years, I’ve learned the hard way: the more relaxed you are as the host, the better the night goes. So I’ve created my own routine when we have guests over to avoid reinventing the wheel each time.

There’s a place for everything, the drinks are self-serve, and the food is yummy but straightforward. I light some inexpensive candles, put out grocery store flowers, and I’m done.

But, the biggest challenge I had was getting dressed, specifically, what shoes to wear.

I want to look casual but not sloppy, and festive but not formal, especially this time of year. So everything I wanted to wear, from skinny jeans to velvet pants, required a shoe not practical for at-home entertaining.

I often ended up in my Rothy’s (which I still love), but I even kicked them off after several hours standing in the kitchen and ended up barefoot. Not ideal.

Then I discovered Birdies, a “stylish flat that’s secretly a slipper” and immediately ordered a pair. They are exactly what you want to wear whether you’re hosting at home, or a guest at your neighbors, or visiting family etc. 

This post is NOT sponsored, I just love them. 

Birdies The Starling Loafer

 

Birdies The Starling Loafer

The Starling Loafer, $95 

Birdies were founded by two moms who shared a passion for bringing family and friends together at home. Frustrated after years of hosting barefoot or in frumpy slippers, they created Birdies. They were initially designed as a comfortable and stylish slipper for home entertaining.

Umm, hello, they are geniuses!

The thing is these are so chic you can wear them anywhere. And I do. 

A Stylish Flat That’s Secretly a Slipper

Birdies The Starling Loafer

They offer so many options; to keep it simple and try them out, I went with The Starling Loafer.

The Starling is my favorite because the profile is slim and elegant, definitely the most versatile of their collection. You can wear them for anything from working to entertaining at home. 

The black velvet is ideal for this time of year. I like them with skinny or straight-leg jeans and a black turtleneck. You can also wear them with leggings (or faux leather leggings!) and a tunic top or sweater. 

If you picked up the J.Crew Factory Velvet pull-on pants from yesterday’s post, these would be perfect for them. I’m planning on wearing that as part of my outfit for Christmas Eve. 


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist View Post and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

 

Reader Five Faves October 2020

October Reader Favs

How is it November

Let’s round the corner of what feels like the fastest and longest year ever, by rounding up your favorites from October. You’ll see these items in up coming posts, so you can continue to build out your wardrobe with mix and match pieces. 

Reader Five Faves October 2020 

October Reader Favs

Long Sleeve White Tee

White Long Sleeve Tee

White Long Sleeve Tee, $8 

It’s hard to find a simple long sleeve white tee that isn’t see through, but Old Navy has one that is only $8. Stock up on these so you have a few on hand and they stay fresh and white. Use them under vests and scarfs, or with casual bottoms and a denim jacket. I even have a few I pair with pajama bottoms. 

Available in regular, tall and petite in a ton of colors up to an XXL. 

Quilted Jacket

Insulated Quilted Jacket

Insulated Quilted Jacket, $139

I am so happy I picked this up at the Nordstrom Sale to replace an old and tired J. Crew barn jacket. It’s lightweight, yet surprisingly warm. Just the thing for early morning walks or waiting for the kids to finish up practice. 

Available in black and navy (also in white but it’s ugly), sizes XS – XL, runs true. 

Peplum Top

Peplum Top

Peplum Top, $40 ON SALE FOR $20

This pretty polka dot peplum top has been on the Fave’s list for a few months now. Today, it’s on sale for $20 (sizing is limited).

Readers have been posting about how much they love it over in our Private Facebook Group. To make it seasonally appropriate, wear dark jeans, a long warm cardigan, and a pair of suede boots.

Cargo Jogger

Cargo Jogger

Cargo Jogger, $63 

Perhaps the real hero piece of 2020 is the jogger. This more polished version of a sweatpant is everything you want in a work-from-home staple, but don’t limit them to sitting in front of your computer. I plan on wearing the black version of this to low key holiday gatherings at home, with a cashmere sweater and ballet flats.

Grab these while they are still in stock, either green (above) or black, in regular and petite XXS -XXL.

Sherpa Tunic

Sherpa Tunic

Sherpa Tunic, $40 

To say I love a cozy half-zip is an understatement, and apparently, you do too, because every time I share one, it goes right to the top of the best-seller list. This one from Old Navy is especially nice because it is slightly longer in the back, making it perfect to pair with leggings (we featured it with leather leggings here).

Available in three colors, chocolate (above), black, and “moon door,” which looks like a white/grey in sizes XS – XXL.


Are You An INSIDER? 

Registration closes on Monday, November 9th. 

Photo of Megan Kristel with text 'Become a Well Dressed Life Insider'


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

Basic Building: Long Sleeve White Tee

Old Navy White Long Sleeve Tee

Basics are the foundation of our wardrobes. 

If you struggle with pulling looks together, you may want to see if you have all the basics you need because having the right ones will make getting dressed a breeze. Like today’s feature, the long sleeve white tee, they are not always exciting, but they are essential. 

After searching high and low for something to casually wear with jeans or serve as a layer under vests and sporty jackets, I realized that the options presented to women are ridiculous. 

Most of them are see-through, which makes the top pretty much pointless. It doesn’t matter the price point; in fact, I’ve noticed the more you spend, the more transparent the material. 

And speaking of price points, who in their right mind would hand over $100, $200, or close to $300 for a cotton top? If you think I’m kidding, this simple white boatneck is $278 and almost sold out

The Well Dressed Life has never been about pushing the most expensive or inexpensive items. It’s not a bargain blog or one that focuses exclusively on high-end brands. Instead, my mission is to provide the best possible recommendations, using the current, seasonal retail mix in stores. In my experience, this is how most women shop, with limited time and budgets. 

So guidance around where to spend and where to save can be helpful, especially when price points across all categories seem out of control. 

While I try not to speak in absolutes, I will here; there is absolutely no reason to spend on cotton layering pieces. 

Instead, stock up on a handful of simple basics, like this long sleeve thermal knit top from Old Navy available in regular, petite, and tall from a size XS – XXL for an astonishing $8. 

EIGHT DOLLARS.

$8 Basic Building White Tee

Old Navy White Long Sleeve Tee

 

Long Sleeve Tee, $8.00

These are extra nice this time of year, especially in our current casual climate. Pair with cotton joggers, leggings, or your favorite comfy jeans.

To dress it up, add a denim jacket (with your joggers) or a vest and scarf (with your jeans.)

For $8, I was so impressed with the quality and details. These are thermals, so they have a classic waffle texture. It’s not too heavy, though, so you won’t feel like you are wearing thermal, cold weather underwear. Instead, it’s soft, comfortable, and not see-through.

Another lovely detail is the curved hem, which finishes it nicely, especially if you wear it tucked out with a layer on top.

If this is a hole in your wardrobe, pick up a few of these. Rotate wearing them to keep them white and crisp longer. 

Runs true to size but go up if in between sizes. 


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

 

 

14 Years

Dear Friends,

This month marks the 14th anniversary of the beginning of my life as an entrepreneur and business owner and four years since  The Well Dressed Life became my full time job.

I was 26 when I walked out of my corporate job and I started my first business, Kristel Closets. It was, hands down, the best decision I ever made.

Of course, at the time, everyone thought I was insane, rightfully so, since I had no idea what I was doing and was pregnant with our oldest. But sometimes you have to follow your gut, and trust your instincts. 

Now, I’m 40, with three kids, and feel confident in my work and convictions. But it’s been a crazy, exhausting, overwhelming, and ultimately wonderful experience to get here. 

So many of you have followed along since the beginning. I hear from countless readers who met me when I started the business while expecting my first baby – who is now 13! And nothing makes me happier than getting a note from a past client – it’s like hearing from an old friend.

I’m so grateful you’ve been with me since the early years – and stuck around as I figured out how to do this. 

More recently, you may have discovered this site on Instagram or Pinterest and don’t have much context about what it’s all about.

Since we also have so many new readers, I thought I would say, “Hi!” (re)introduce myself and answer some of the most popular questions I regularly receive.

Cheers to 14 Years!

HI! This is me. 

The first thing you need to know is that I hate, HATE putting my picture on the internet for all to see. It feels ridiculous and embarrassing.

I know it’s helpful to see the pieces I recommend on a real body. So thank you for being kind and supportive as I stepped WAY outside my comfort zone this past year. 

First, Things First … 

I live in the suburbs of Philadelphia with my husband, Brian, and our three girls Maddie (13), Ava (10), and Vivian (almost 2). Bri and I met in college, and we’ve been together for 21 years, married for 17. It sounds cliche, but they are my everything. 

Life is full, busy, and blessed with two careers and a calendar packed with sports and activities. I’m currently trying to “balance” having a teenager who is slowly gaining more and more independence and a toddler who demands my attention all day long. Needless to say, I hit the pillow really hard at night. 

I’ve always loved fashion and style. In and right after college, I worked as a retail buyer, starting at a private, high-end store, and ending up at QVC, where I bought items and created programming for the home-shopping network. 

I left to start my first business, Kristel Closets (a personal styling and shopping company), when I was expecting Maddie. I intended to create a career that would allow me to be the kind of mother I wanted to be and have a fulfilling professional life.

After ten years of working with clients up and down the east coast and extensively traveling the country working with our corporate clients, I decided to turn all of my attention to this site. I was burning out, traveling so much I barely saw my kids and felt like I was moving away from my original goal of having a career and personal life I found equally satisfying. 

It’s been a tremendous amount of work, with a long list of failures along the way. Even though it hasn’t always been easy, there’s not a day that goes by that I’m not grateful for the opportunities and life I have. I feel really fortunate that I have a career I’m passionate about and one that has brought so much goodness into my life. 

Being a working mom is a big part of who I am, which means our content comes from that perspective. That said, our readers are remarkably diverse and range from stay at home moms to recently retired women and grandmothers; I’m always thrilled to hear that our content resonates with women in all seasons of life.

What I want you to know …

I absolutely love the community that has been built around this site. I pour my heart and soul into my work every day and think deeply about how we can create content that helps, inspires, or gives you a little break amid your busy day. 

Posts can take anywhere from 4 – 6 hours to produce, and we post content five days a week. 

I promise not to fill your inbox with junk and I never create a post as a money grab. On the rare occasion that I miss a day publishing, it’s because I couldn’t get a post together that I found valuable or relevant. 

There’s so much that goes into a site like this that you don’t see. Even I’m surprised by it. 

I so appreciate it when you comment and share our work. It’s the lifeline of our business.

And here are the questions I regularly receive … 

How did you get started? 

I studied business at Temple University Fox School of Business and worked in high-end retail while still in school. After graduating, I spent many years as a women’s clothing buyer for a small boutique and a major retailer. Before starting my business, I was a buyer for QVC, procuring products and developing programs in their Home Decor, Candle, and Christmas department.

In 2006 I started my first company, Kristel Closets, Inc. (KCI), a full-service personal shopping and styling firm. I wanted to take my experience and love of style and help women navigate the often overwhelming retail world.

I ran that company for ten years. At our peak, I had an incredible team of personal stylists who worked with our clients in Northern New Jersey, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C., and all their surrounding areas.

This blog was initially designed to be a marketing tool attached to our business website, as a way to connect with potential clients. But quickly, I realized I could expand our audience and work with women all over the country and now the world. 

After a decade, I officially closed KCI to focus all of my energy on building The Well Dressed Life

Do you have a team? (and) Are you hiring?

Lauren, my dearest friend, creates all of our graphics and designs and helps maintain the backend of our site. Which means when I break the backend, she fixes it.  

I work with a fantastic local photographer, Ashley Griffin. She’s made all the difference in the look of the site, and my marriage since trying to force my husband to take suitable pictures of me was a losing battle. 

At the end of 2019, I was planning on building out a team because other than Lauren and Ashely, I am running this operation solo. Of course, 2020 is a dumpster fire, so hopefully, I’ll feel more confident bringing in more help early next year. 

Typos and Spelling Errors

The grammar police are not my biggest fans.

If you see an error, it’s not because I’m an idiot; it’s a typo my tired eyes missed. All posts are run through the premium version of Grammarly multiple times before going live, but sometimes there are errors. Everything gets fixed eventually. So, give a girl some grace; I’m doing my best.

Are your posts sponsored? 

No, they are not. 

When I worked with personal clients, I refused a commission from retailers and never sold a brand of clothes, make-up, or jewelry because I wanted to be independent. 

Today, I take that same philosophy.

While most bloggers’ revenue comes from sponsored posts, I’m not comfortable with it. Over the years, people have said I was crazy for leaving that kind of money on the table, but the longer I stay away from it, the happier I am with the decision. It’s a slippery slope.

It took me years to build a loyal following; I’m not going to chip away at that by filling your news feed and emails with ads disguised as content. 

You need to know when I make a recommendation, it’s a sincere one.  

How do you make money?

Our blog revenue comes from on site ads, affiliate links, and our Insider program. 

Affiliate links mean that when you click one of our product links and make a purchase, we make a very small (very, very small) commission. I’m a part of Shopstyle Collective and rewardStyle networks which helps me connect with retailers. 

I am also part of the Mediavine Ad Network. Mediavine works as a liaison and sells space on my site to advertisers. These ads do not influence the content in any way. 

Finally, over the summer, I launched our WDL Insider as a way to work with readers more personally at scale. It was a great success, so I’m launching our Fall Insider this Friday. 

How do you balance work and kids? Do you have childcare?

Typically, Bri and I feel like we are hanging on by a thread all day, every day. 

Thankfully, the big girls are back in school after being home for almost seven months. Like everyone who lived through various lockdown levels and managing schooling at home, we were an absolute mess.

We do have a wonderful babysitter for Vivi, who comes over three days a week from 9 – 3. So I have a chance to work while all the kids are occupied during the school day.

My parents are also a huge help and take care of Viv the other two days.

Weekends are insane because our big girls play sports, including travel softball, so it’s hours and hours of practice and games.

During the week, I usually work between 9 am – 3 pm, then get back online from 7 pm – 11 pm, and try to squeeze in some hours over the weekend, but lately, that hasn’t been possible.

Honestly, given how bad this year is, we’re blessed to have good health and thriving kids. 

Any advice for starting a business?

I have two very simple pieces of advice. First, you won’t love every aspect of running a business so you have to love your mission and keep that top of mind. 

Second, I really believe a good part of my success is thanks to my pure stubbornness. So just don’t stop moving forward, even and especially when you fail epically. I’m not the smartest, or most skilled, but I will out work everyone. 

How tall are you? 

I’m 5’10 in bare feet. 

What size do you wear? 

I’m a solid medium or size 8. 

How would you describe your style?

Casual, modern, classic, and feminine. Our style posts are heavily influenced by what I like, but I also appreciate all kinds of styles. 

Do you follow a budget when you shop?

Not in the sense that I sit down and figure out a number I can spend each season or year. But that doesn’t mean I have an unlimited budget. I know what I can afford and try my best to be prudent with my purchases; remember, I still have three kids to put through school.

Do you buy what you say you do?

Absolutely. If I say I bought it, I bought it, but I don’t purchase everything we feature. Often, our outfit posts are inspired by either questions you post or my experience dressing clients. 

Is that really your skincare routine? (and) Why do you spend so much on skincare products? 

Yes, that’s what I use every night. As I said in the post, my skin was a problem for a long time and crushed my confidence, so I will spend time and money to keep it clear and healthy. One of the reasons I didn’t initially post pictures of myself on this site was because I was dealing with terrible skin.

That said, I don’t spend in lots of areas, so it all works out in my book. Many of the products I featured are expensive, but they last a long time. The main point of that post was to talk about applying your products to get the best results. 

Can you please feature petite and plus sizes?

I think people skim through the posts and assume we are only featuring “regular” or “missy” sizes. We include petite and plus sizes in almost every single outfit post if there is an option. We also prioritize retailers that are size inclusive and call out their size offerings in the text. 

By the time I read your post, items are sold out. Can you check inventory before posting? 

Unfortunately, I do not have access to the retailers’ inventory levels. I do make every effort to make sure sizing isn’t limited or already sold out before posting. When something does sell out before a post goes live, we quickly change out the item. 

Why don’t you feature more discount retailers? 

I’m not a great sale shopper. I don’t make good decisions in discount stores, and what I buy almost always turns into closet clutter. That doesn’t mean I don’t love a good deal, but I don’t go looking for them.

Additionally, inventory levels at discounters are notoriously low. There is usually no inclusive size scale, limiting me in terms of giving plus and petite options.

My focus is to help you build a wardrobe, share inspiration, and, most important, I want you to understand why certain pieces go together so you can dress confidently.

Of course, when something great goes on sale, I’m the first to share it. 

Can you feature UK based retailers?

I’m shocked at how international our reach has become, especially since I don’t think my next-door neighbor knows what I do for a living. I wish I knew more UK based retailers but being US based I don’t have much exposure to them. As we grow, I’m trying to figure out how to make recommendations to readers outside the US, so please stay tuned. 

Basics Building: Leopard Print Transition Blazer

Ann Taylor The Hutton Blazer In Leopard Print

Need a piece to spice up your wardrobe as we move from the warm to chilly weather?

The Hunter Blazer in Leopard from Ann Taylor hits all the marks.  

If you happen to be new around here, welcome! Every Wednesday, I feature content specifically for work, and work these days is all over the place, so versatility is key. 

It’s rare that I find a piece and think most of our readers could wear it, but this might be it, if, of course, you’re down with the print. 

First, the print is fun but not in-your face thanks to the colors being slightly muted. You can wear it with black, brown, cream, ivory and any blue or black based denim. 

It has a nice amount of stretch so you can move in it comfortably and it will pair nicely with most of your business casual basics. 

Ann Taylor Transition Blazer 

.

Ann Taylor The Hutton Blazer In Leopard Print

 

Blazer, On Sale, $89.50 in missy and petite up to a size 18 

Let’s talk specifically about what you have hanging in your closet that you can wear with this. 

The Spanx Perfect skinny black pant is an ideal pairing because the fabrics complement each other. Wear this popular shell in black or ivory underneath.

Wear your Wit & Wisdom Absolution Skinny Jean, with a simple white tee for a day working from home, and add the blazer when you hop on a video call. 

Did you pick up a pair of joggers? Don’t be shy, use them to create an edgy, polished look and wear with either a slim profile loafer or a heel. 

If you are in a warmer weather part of the country, and picked up these AT cropped pants, throw this blazer on top to bring them into the season. 

Shop this Post


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

 

September 2020: Readers’ Top Five Faves

September readers' Favs

Our Reader Favorites Series rounds up the Top Five Favorite items our readers purchased from the previous month. I use these items throughout the season to help you build a chic and classic wardrobe filled with versatile, mix, and match pieces.

Think of this round-up as recommendations from our community of like-minded women.

If they love it, you probably will too! 

As we navigate through the end of this bizarre year, our focus here at The Well Dressed Life continues to be providing you with practical style tips and advice. This month, I’m trying to strike a balance between looks that make sense for staying in and close to home and also help us move back to a pre lockdown life. 

September 2020: Readers’ Top Five Faves

 

September readers' Favs

Our Reader Faves from September are pieces that help us transition back to some level of normalcy (please???) and into the chilly season. 

J. Crew Factory Button-collar Pullover Sweatshirt

 

J.Crew Factory Button-collar pullover sweatshirt in green, pink, and ivory

Sweatshirt, $29 

An easy-peasy, under $30 sweatshirt, with details that elevates it just enough so it doesn’t feel sloppy. Available in three colors online up to a size 3X.

See original post here

Cole Haan Margo Leather Sneaker

Cole Haan Margo Leather Sneaker

Sneaker, $90 

Buy. These. Sneakers. If you need a new white pair for the fall, look no further. Cole Haan makes a fantastic shoe and these sneakers are no exception.  I LOVE them. They are sleek, crisp, and sophisticated. They look great with jeans, or with a casual dress. They run true to size. 

J. Crew V-neck Peplum Top in Jacquard Dot

how to wear a polka dot top in the fall

Peplum Top, $20 (ON SALE)

You know you’ve found a must-have piece when it makes the Fave’s list two months in a row. Right now, this peplum top from J.Crew is on a super sale, marked down to only $20. Readers have raved about it, even posting pictures of them wearing it in our Private Facebook group. Above is a simple way to style it in the cold weather, or if you’re lucky enough to enjoy the warm sunshine still, you can pair it with your favorite white bottoms.

Available in sizes 00 – 14. Runs true. 

Madewell Texture & Thread Front Knot Jacquard Top

Work From Home Outfit

Front Knot Top, $40 

I picked this Madewell top up at the Nordstrom Sale and have already worn it so many times. It’s textured like a thermal top, with front knot detail, that makes it feel better than a basic tee.
It is short (not cropped), so it works well with a high waisted jean. Available in five seasonal colors, including plus sizes.

You can see me wearing this over on Instagram

SPANX Perfect Black Pants

How to Wear Spanx Perfect Black Skinny Pants to Work

Black Pants, $128 

Finally, these black pants by Spanx round out our top five list. They are a Ponte pant, so not a legging and not a traditional dress pant. The material is thick, stretchy, and cut like a skinny pant. We featured a couple of ways to style them, one if you are back in the office another if you are working from home for the rest of the years. 

My favorite way to wear these is with a cozy sweater and a ballet flat (like these insanely comfortable Birdie’s I mentioned yesterday). 


Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist View Post and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

The Ten List: October 2020

The Ten List October 2020

The Ten List was our most popular series in 2019. This year, it moves from being a weekly to a monthly post to make more room for style focused content.

Here I share a thoughtful quote, a little insight, and some products (that don’t require their own post), articles, and other conversation starters that I’m enjoying. As always, I hope it’s a helpful bit of inspiration for your day and love to hear from you in the comments below!

Does anyone else wake up and wonder, “How is this still going on??”

Over the last six months, I’ve used every ounce of energy to keep life moving forward. The “balance” of keeping our family safe while maintaining their mental health, managing the kids’ education and preparing for their future, running a business without staff, trying to protect our careers, all while attempting to stay optimistic, is wearing me out.

Today, life feels the most normal it has in months (my kids have been back to school in person for four weeks now!), but there is this enormous heaviness hanging over everything.

I feel tired in my bones. When I finally get a minute to sit down and work, it’s like my brain can’t click into gear.

But I’ve always found the Fall magical. Something about watching the beauty of the season change every day gives me comfort. It feels like a new chapter, or a rebirth. 

While waiting for this chapter to close, focusing on staying grateful has been the singular thing I’ve done to keep my head on straight.

 

The Ten List October 2020

I was reminded recently of the importance of actually writing down what you are grateful for. It’s one thing to think it, but it’s an entirely different experience when you take pen to paper. These days, I can’t make a production out of anything. So I simply scribble words into my notebook: happy kids, health, community, excellent school, etc.

Especially in those moments of total overwhelm and exhaustion, it’s often the push I need to reset and refocus.

Also, I can’t wait for this year to be over; hang in there, everyone. xx

 

2. Two- Tone Earrings 

Two Tone Earrings

Earrings, $68 

Want to update your earring game for the fall? These two-tone hoops are just the thing. You can easily switch from gold to silver to keep your look cohesive. They are light but still substantial, perfect for Zoom meetings, and an excellent value at under $70.

3. Amazon Sweater 

Amazon Sweater

Amazon Sweater, $29 

I was looking for a “house sweater,” something I could throw on with cute boyfriend jeans and a white tee shirt. I landed on this cozy and slouchy under $30 option from Amazon. It’s available in 6 seasonal colors and runs true to size (I purchased the medium). 

4. Triple Cooling Rack

Triple Cooling Rack

4. Triple Cooling Rack

Perhaps I’ve been living under a rock, but discovering this cooling rack blew my mind. It has three tiers! With the holidays right around the corner, I’m so looking forward to baking with the kids, and packing up treats to send to neighbors. This will make big baking days a lot easier to manage. 

5. Monogrammed Pouches

Monogrammed Pouches

Monogrammed Pouches, $45 

I have three daughters. My oldest are 13 and 10, and they steal each other’s everything all day long. So I ordered them these pouches to corral all the things they use daily like chargers, air pods, deodorant, lip balm, etc. They keep them on their desks in their bedrooms, and it gives them a place to keep all the things. Does it work? I would say enough that they are not continually searching for missing items and bickering about who stole what, so yes. 

6. Pumkin Spice Candle

Candle

Candle, $25  

I’m not a pumpkin spice fangirl, but I found this candle on Etsy by Basic Bee Candle Co., and I LOVE it. So much so I ordered 5 of them. They are non-toxic, smell amazing, and burn clean. I light one every day in the kitchen, and it fills the space with this warm and comforting fragrance that’s not too sweet. I’ve even given a few out as thank you gifts to friends, and they all have raved about it too.

7. Knit Pumpkins

The Ten List October 2020

Knit Pumpkins, $8.00 + 

Another Etsy find is these adorable knit pumpkins. They come in a variety of sizes and colors and are so cute in person. I have them piled around the fireplace in a basket. I love the texture they bring into our fall decor. 

Sherpa Pullover

 

Sherpa Pullover, $30 

Over the years, I’ve purchased so many versions of this pullover from J.Crew; one could argue that I don’t need anymore. But I love that I can throw this on over a pair of joggers and get through our busy and chilly mornings. You can keep it casual and sporty with leggings and sneakers, or layer over a button-down with jeans and ballet flats. Available in four colorways up to a 3X

Manicure Tool

Manicure Tool, $16 

Influencers everywhere are singing the praises of LA-based nail company, Olive & June. They claim their tools provide salon-quality at-home manicures. 

I say the products are just okay. I’m not a fan of their nail polishes, and the hype around their tools is just good marketing. However, this little gizmo called  The Poppy is pretty great. You pop it onto the top of your nail polishes, and it helps keep your hand steady for a smooth, professional-looking application. Available at Target online and in stores. 

A Well Dressed Life Insider Logo

Our Fall Insider Membership will open on Friday, October 23rd

The Insider Membership mimics the 3 – Step Process I created for clients back in my personal styling days, but at a fraction of the cost.

It’s designed to help you create a classic and chic seasonal wardrobe.

Membership is seasonal, for three months at a time. The 2020 Fall Membership includes October, November, and December, with wardrobe offerings reflective of the season and year-round basics.

With membership, you’ll receive access to our new password-protected ad-free member portal.

You’ll find a seasonal shopping list, a wardrobe capsule, and over 50 outfit combinations.
The shopping list and capsule work together, and each month I’ll add a few new items and outfit combinations so you can continue to build your wardrobe. 

Plus! I’ll host LIVE monthly style coaching sessions in our Private Insider Facebook page so I can personally answer your questions and provide guidance. 

The cost is a one time payment of $59.95. 

To get on the waitlist and be first in line for membership, please add your email below. 

Stay tuned for more details coming this Monday, October 12th. 

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