It’s Fall! …Kind Of.

80 degrees? Meh.

Blue on Blue - Sarrandipity blog
Similar Glasses: NordstromTarget // Tank: Free People // Bralette: Amazon // Similar Jeans: Neiman Marcus; Nordstrom Rack

It happens every year: Labor Day hits and almost everyone (myself included) immediately transitions into fall mode. Sweaters! Scarves! Boots! Coziness! Halloween Decorations! But here’s the thing: While we can hang all the Halloween decorations we want (and, believe me, I have); here in Chicago, we usually have to wait several weeks after Labor Day before we can break out the fall clothes. Though we’ve had a couple cool-ish days this fall so far, mostly it’s been annoyingly warm—or even hot. In fact, just yesterday it was in the mid-80s. Today, we’re looking at a high of 80. It’s October 6. Listen, I love summer. I love sunshine. I love warmth. But, I also love fall. And being cozy. And wearing sweaters. (Therein lies the beauty of seasons.)

So, what does that mean for my outfits? At this point, despite the heat, I just can’t bring myself to wear shorts anymore. I can’t. Instead, I compromise with my closet; when the temps soar above 75, I throw on a pair of cropped pants to feel kind of fall-ish with a tank top to avoid overheating. This Free People tank was one of my favorites all summer—I’m really into the trend of semi-open sides, and this one is seriously comfortable—and if you’ve read any of my blog posts, you now know I’m obsessed with AG jeans, the crops included.  These pictures were taken during an actual summer day in Boston, but I wore this exact outfit yesterday. If you’re lamenting this too-warm weather like I am, and looking for an in-between type outfit to wait out the heat, I highly recommend a get-up like this one. 

Blue on BlueSimilar Glasses: NordstromTarget // Tank: Free People // Bralette: Amazon // Similar Jeans: Neiman Marcus; Saks Fifth Avenue // Similar (almost the same!) Sandals: 6PM

If you ever want to feel tall, just find an old, tiny door in Boston to stand next to.

Blue on BlueSimilar Bag: Nordstrom; Bloomingdale’s // Bralette: Amazon // Similar (almost the same!) Sandals: 6PM

I’m obsessed with my nylon crossbody bag. It’s so much more lightweight than leather, and it’s seriously durable. This bag has been through the ringer, including multiple rain storms—major point for nylon. Sadly, mine (Marc by Marc Jacobs Natasha, nylon version) is no longer available, but I found a couple similar options, above.

Blue on BlueI shall call this series…Picture-Taking ADD.

Blue on Blue

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This post contains affiliate links. You won’t pay more by using them, but Sarrandipity may receive a (very) small commission if you click on a link and purchase something. Please check out my policies for more info. 

Because It’s Not Labor Day Yet

White pants FTW.

The most classic summer look. - Sarrandipity blog Similar Glasses: NordstromTarget // Similar Jacket: LOFT; Gap // Tank: Old Navy // Similar Tank: Nordstrom Rack; Nordstrom // Similar Jeans: Gap // Similar (almost the same!) Sandals: 6pm

Okay, so the title of this post very clearly makes it seem like I don’t approve of wearing white after Labor Day. In reality, I’m all for it: If you want to wear white, wear white (except to someone else’s wedding, because that’s just rude…unless it’s a whole thing they’re doing where they turn their wedding into a white party and ask all of their guests to wear white, too…but I digress). So what’s up with the title? Well, I thought, “Hey, here’s a cheeky title for this blog post that’s partially about my white jeans,” so I used it. That’s it.

Anyway, onto the goods. True, Labor Day is next weekend, and true, that always makes it feel like summer and its warm temps are DONE, and true, I may be secretly harboring wishes for fall and Halloween, and lighting candles, and dressing cozily inside pretending that it is cool outside…but it’s not. Summer and, more specifically, summer weather, is still here and going strong. Which means outfits that involve things like white pants and tank tops and sandals are totally fair game. This summer, I really went back to basics. Aside from my new favorite graphic tees and tanks, I’ve worn almost exclusively solid colors. This outfit, which I wore on an extended weekend trip to Madeira Beach, Florida earlier this summer (okay, it was in April—I know, I know, it took me forever to post these pictures, bla bla bla), was a perfect storm of some of my favorite basics, old and new. I strongly feel like a good pair of white pants (I’ve had mine from Gap—most similar to these, I imagine—for at least three years), a good jean jacket, and a good pair of sandals that can be dressed up or down, are essential to any summer wardrobe. And this look, I believe, is case in point.

The most classic summer outfit - Sarrandipity

I got these sandals last summer, and they remain one of the best shoe purchases I’ve ever made. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve worn them, dressed up, dressed down, and everywhere in between. I can’t find this exact style anywhere now, but these ones (both Steve Madden) are almost exactly the same, and I cannot recommend them highly enough. If you like easy, versatile footwear, girl, get these.

The most classic summer outfit - SarrandipitySimilar Watch: Amazon // Bangles: Nordstrom // Similar Necklace: Nordstrom

I say, why do a boring, awkward, I’m-taking-pictures-for-my-blog pose every time, when you can dance instead?

The most classic summer outfit - Sarrandipity

Really digging split back tanks for a little pizzazz.

The most classic summer outfit - SarrandipityThe most classic summer outfit - SarrandipityThe most classic summer outfit - Sarrandipity

Fun fact: Looking down is a great way to differentiate your outfit photos.

The most classic summer outfit

100% pointing out dolphins. They were really there. And I was obsessed.

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This post contains affiliate links. You won’t pay more by using them, but Sarrandipity may receive a (very) small commission if you click on a link and purchase something. Please check out my policies for more info. 

Black Is The New Black

Black is the New Black - Sarrandipity                         Hat: Amazon // Jacket: Nordstrom // Sweater: Nordstrom // Jeans: Nordstrom //                              Boots: Nordstrom // Bag: Lo & Sons

Sometimes when I shop, I guilt myself into buying colors. I tell myself, “All you ever wear is black and grey, and you need to branch out and brighten up.” Then, I buy the colorful clothing—and it largely hangs unworn in my closet while I continue to don black and grey. Because here’s the thing: Not only are those neutrals timeless and generally flattering, but they’re also what I like to wear. I like how black clothes look, and I feel good when I wear them. That’s not to say I walk around all day every day looking like Wednesday Addams; I spice things up with fun jewelry, and do occasionally don colorful clothing (I tend to gravitate toward blues and greens). But, I’ve decided to stop feeling guilty when I don’t, and embrace my overwhelmingly black wardrobe, because really, black will always be the new black. 

Black is the New Black - Sarrandipity Necklace: Nordstrom

Black is the New Black - Sarrandipity Similar Watch: Nordstrom // Gold Ring: Catbird 

I love this bag for multiple reasons, particularly the fact that it has three main compartments (two zippered), the strap adjusts so that it’s short enough to be a shoulder bag, and it comes with a second, smaller wrist strap to convert the bag into a clutch. 

Black is the New Black - Sarrandipity Sunglasses: Amazon

Black is the New Black - Sarrandipity

Photos by Meghan Residori

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Going Green

Going Green - Winter Shift Dress - Sarrandipity Blog
Dress: Nordstrom Rack // Similar (Waterproof!) Boots: Nordstrom // Similar Tights: Target // Similar Necklace: Amazon

I didn’t realize it until recently, but my dress collection consists almost entirely of shift dresses. Whenever I’m shopping, I subconsciously gravitate toward their loose, comfortable shapes—who knows, maybe I’m drawn to the feeling of being breezy. (Side note: You’ll rarely see me in any super form-fitting tops and dresses — they’re just not really my jam. Bandage dresses: never.) That said, it’s hard to find a shift dress that is just loose enough, without looking like a muumuu. I’ve purchased far too many overly baggy dresses, only to desperately try cinching them with a belt without, causing them to bunch up weirdly and hideously in all the wrong places. This green shift was one of my successful purchases, and I’m so in love with it. I wore this outfit to interview Anthony Bourdain at an event a couple weeks ago and felt confident, comfortable and, yes, breezy. (Please, someone appreciate my Friends reference. I linked to it a few sentences ago; have a look.) I had so much fun with my jewelry that night, too, layering the necklaces and mixing metals and colors. I love pairing gold and silver and, though I’m really not much of a pearls person, the Dear Miss J bracelet and earrings have a level of edginess that really speaks to me. I think they balanced out the sharp edges of the necklace perfectly. The compass necklace was a birthday gift from a friend of mine, who I lived with in London back in the day (grab a similar one here or here), and it’s so special and perfect for any travel lovers—so if you’re doing any last-minute gift shopping, you’re welcome. 

Going Green - Shift Dress & Layered Jewelry - Sarrandipity BlogBack cut-outs are a definite “yes” in my book. 

Mixed Metals Jewelry - Sarrandipity Blog
Similar Statement Necklace: Amazon // Similar Compass Necklace: Lord & Taylor // Bracelet: Dear Miss J // Earrings: Dear Miss J

Green Shift Dress & Layered Jewelry - Sarrandipity Blog

Photos by Meghan Residori

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2015 Gift Guide: White Elephant Gifts That Don’t Suck

Please, think outside the nearest drugstore.

White Elephant Gifts That Don't Suck - Sarrandipity's 2015 Gift Guide

To be honest, I’m not a huge fan of the whole “white elephant” thing—usually because the whole buying-gifts-for-unknown-recipients means that everyone receives cheap, random tchotchkes that they’ll never use (but will collect dust and add to stressful household clutter). That said, if you’re part of a group who commits to doing the blind gifting tradition right, it can work. In my opinion, that means setting a budget of at least $15—but ideally $25—and making the effort to find cool, usable gifts rather than frantically shopping the “As Seen On TV” aisle at CVS. Here, my second-annual list of suggestions (I still stand-by the first annual round-up, too) for some quality white elephant gifts you can bring to your next exchange. (Just use your judgment: If the exchange is with your officemates and half of them are dudes, probably don’t go with the jewelry dish.)
White Elephant Gifts That Don't Suck - Sarrandipity's 2015 Gift Guide

1. Telestrations
This game is AMAZING. I recently bought it and tested it out with my (sometimes difficult-to-impress) friends at our last game night, and it was a hit. I’m obsessed.

2. Wine Glass Writers
I bought these because I have stemless wine glasses and thus can’t use the typical wine charms, but I love them more than the charms anyway. The metallic colors are pretty, they’re fun and easy to use, and three pens suffice for any number of people.

3. Umbrella Ring Dish
White Elephant Gifts That Don't Suck - Umbrella Ring Dish - Sarrandipity 2015 Gift Guide
These little trinket dishes are endlessly handy for anyone who wears jewelry (PSA: it holds more than just rings).

4. Ponytail Holders (Set of 15)
A slightly prettier, snag-free alternative to those ribbon hair ties that are everywhere (and that sadly, lose their elasticity too easily for my thick hair…).

5. Silicone Popsicle Molds
I know, I know, the listing says “For Kids.” But trust me, these things are awesome. Fill them with some mashed up fresh fruit (I highly recommend watermelon), or any other food and/or drink you want to experiment with, pop ’em in the freezer, and get some tasty treats out of it.

6. BeeSpa Hand & Foot Cream
This stuff is a dream, especially for those of us who live in cold-weather climates and have to deal with dry air and dryer skin for multiple months out of the year.

7. Country or State Slate Cheese Board

White Elephant Gifts That Don't Suck - State or Country Cheese Board - Sarrandipity 2015 Gift Guide

Go state-specific if the whole group is big on local pride, or keep it general with the USA version.

8. ‘Maison Holiday’ Petite Candle Set
Voluspa candles are my absolute favorite. They smell so good; they’re pretty much impossible to resist.

9. Wood Appetizer & Dip Tray (With Glass Bowl)
Who doesn’t need a good chip-(or appetizer)-and-dip vessel? Even non-entertainers can use it to class-up their post-work snack times.

10. 90s TV Trivia Game
May as well buy one for yourself while you’re at it because, come on.

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This post contains affiliate links. You won’t pay more by using them, but Sarrandipity may receive a (very) small commission if you click on a link and purchase something. Please check out my policies for more info. 

 

My Summer Uniform

easy summer outfit - sarrandipity blogSimilar Tank: Off 5th or Nordstrom // Similar Shorts: J.Crew // Sunglasses: Amazon 

I love a good sundress, but in the summer I’m most comfortable in a pair of shorts and a loose, silky tank top. On any given summer day, chances are I’m wearing some variety of the outfit above: Sometimes it’s cut-off jean shorts or my absolute favorite, can’t-get-enough, lightweight Lululemon shorts, and sometimes it’s a solid-color tank instead of patterned, but the basic idea is the same. I’ve actually had the outfit in the above picture for years, and both pieces are still two of the favorites in my closet (partially because the top is racerback, which I always love); I can’t imagine getting sick of them anytime soon.

Summer accessories - Sarrandipity blogSimilar Hand Chain: Nordstrom // Similar Watch: Nordstrom or Amazon // Similar Bracelet: Amazon

Sunny summer look - Sarrandipity blog Sunglasses: Amazon // Similar Earrings: Bloomingdale’s // Similar Necklace: Lord & Taylor // Lip Stain: Sephora (Watermelon Slice)

Easy summer outfit - Sarrandipity Blog Similar Sandals: Amazon or Nordstrom Rack

Easy summer outfits - Sarrandipity blogSimilar Blue Tank: Nordstrom // Similar Jean Shorts: Amazon // Similar Tan Tank: Revolve Clothing

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This post contains affiliate links. You won’t pay more by using them, but Sarrandipity may receive a (very) small commission if you click on a link and purchase something. Please check out my policies for more info. 

Gift Guide: Unique White Elephant Gifts That Don’t Suck

White-Elephant-Feature-Image

I used to hate white elephant gift exchanges, because I was under the impression that the only inexpensive gifts you could get that would be universally appealing were, well, terrible ones. But, thanks to the Internet and stores’ increasingly creative check-out line displays, my eyes have been opened to the endlessly creative and awesome products out there. Here, just a few white elephant gift ideas that unique and not at all lame, all under $25.

Cocktail-KitOld Fashioned Carry-On Cocktail Kit
Making crying babies on flights more manageable for everyone. $24, Nordstrom

Maps

Scratch-Off Mini Wall Map
Perfect if you hang out with a bunch of globetrotters. $24, Flight001

Selfie-Remote
Bluetooth Camera Shutter Release
Because it’s a selfie-obsessed world out there. $10, Nordstrom

Picture-Display
Photo Clip String Set
The selfie-obsessed need somewhere to put all those snapshots. $14, Urban Outfitters

Fruit-Infuser
Ice Ball Flavour It
Because flavored water is the jam right now. $16, Brookstone

Spot-It
Spot It
I swear to you, everyone will love this game. It’s addicting. $9, Amazon

Smart-Phone-Lens
Smartphone Macro Photo Lens
It’s time your friends up their Instagram game. $20, Urban Outfitters

Balloon-Kit
Balloon Modeling Kit
I mean, who hasn’t dreamed of becoming a balloon-animal expert? $12, Uncommon Goods

Ice-Cream-Sandwich
Mini Ice Cream Sandwich Maker
Um, yum. $15, Amazon

This post contains affiliate links. You won’t pay more by using them, but Sarrandipity may receive a (very) small commission if you click on a link and purchase something. Please check out my policies for more info.