OOTD

One Piece: Multiple Looks.

Hello, my friends! Happy Wednesday! This month is second-hand September! For those who don’t know, it’s a month dedicated to buying only secondhand clothing. Bobby and I took a trip to Goodwill the other day, and did some browsing. I tried on a total of three items, and unfortunately, only one of the items worked out, but boy, is it a cute one!

A funny little story: I tried on a pair of jeans that were originally from Old Navy, and they were my size so I was SUPER excited, because they were SO cute. And then when I went to try them on, I couldn’t even get them past my calves, and I was super confused. I looked on the inside of the pants and they said “husky” on the tag, and they had the elastic on the inside to adjust the size, so I’m like 99% sure they were little boy pants… So, needless to say, they were not a win.

I also tried on a really cute striped dress, but it just didn’t fit me right, so I put it back so that someone else could find the striped dress of their dreams!

The dress I ended up getting… oh my gosh, SO cute. It still had tags on it, although I’ve never heard of the brand before.

I wanted to make a post using an item that I bought second-hand as the base of my outfit, and show all the ways that you could style it. While the items I pair with it may or may not be second-hand, what I want to show is that if we buy pieces that are versatile, we’re able to create so many different variations of an outfit, possibly with items we already own!

Is this dress not the CUTEST?
A couple options for shoes.

This pair of white cowgirl boots would be great paired with a denim jacket for a trip to the pumpkin patch. Because as much as I wish the weather was cooling down… it just isn’t so yet! I would also probably curl my hair for this look!

These white sandals, like I wore in the picture above, would be great paired with a tan sun hat for a nice day exploring a cute downtown. I think I would probably do my hair in two fishtail braids because I LOVE that paired with a cute hat.

And the black heels! That are VERY cute but VERY uncomfortable, would be perfect for date night. I’d probably straighten my hair and wear a bold earring!

There are so many ways we can switch up our outfits! Shoes, jewelry, purses, the way we style our hair, hats, and even our makeup, can totally change our outfit!

I only chose to add a couple of ideas, because there really are countless ways to make an outfit feel new, but I love the idea of making each and every time you wear a piece, for it to be completely unique. Fashion is all about having fun, and this is one of my favorite parts of putting together outfits!

Thank you so much for reading!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

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OOTD

OOTD: Reading in the Park.

Hello, friends! A happy little Wednesday to you! This blog is going up a little late — I just couldn’t think of what to write! And then, I thought about doing an OOTD. I have a bunch of photos from a past little photoshoot with Bobby, so I thought I would compile those into an OOTD blog post! A couple of these photos have made it to other blog posts, but I thought I’d do an OOTD of them all together!

It’s so funny how when we get our photo taken and absolutely HATE it, but then we look back at it a couple of months later… and we realize that it wasn’t so bad. That’s how I feel about this set of photos!

And this dress is probably my favorite of all time, so I wanted to feature it!

And here’s a breakdown of the items!

White coverup: Target

Dress: Old Navy

Bag: TJ Maxx

Shoes: BANGS

And that’s all, folks! A pretty short post, but I liked being able to do an OOTD again. Hopefully more to come in the near future!

Xoxo, Mattie Mae

OOTD

Shopping My Closet: Fourth of July.

Hello, friends! A happy Wednesday to all of you! I know that it may seem silly, but as I’ve mentioned in previous blog posts, I used to use holidays, yes, even the fourth of July, as excuses to buy new outfits. I love putting together cute outfits, and even more so when there’s a theme, but there comes a time when you need to realize that it’s really not necessary to do that. Especially when you have so many outfits from years passed… 

As a result of this, I’ve been trying to shop my own closet more. It’s such a simple thing, but it really allows you to look at your closet with fresh eyes. The other week I decided to wear a sweater that I’ve had since middle school. I remember not wearing it a lot because I thought it looked bad on me, and now, seven years later, I think it looks adorable! It’s funny how our perspective can change about such things. 

ANYWHO.

Let’s begin!

Accessories: 

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Sunglasses: I chose this pair of red, heart-shaped, sunglasses because I think they are so darn cute, first of all. Second of all, I think they’re just perfect for fourth of July. I really enjoy wearing sunglasses almost as one would wear a headband. I think it looks so effortlessly chic, not to mention practical, especially if you find yourself in a car with all of the windows down. And, of course, they’re quite useful when the sun gets in your eyes. I also have a pair of cat-eyed sunglasses that are red and white polka dot, that I think would be quite perfect. I think that as far as sunglasses go, it’s hard to go wrong with a red and/or white pair. And as far as where I got these red ones from, I do believe it was at Rue 21, maybe five years ago. Luckily, a pair of heart-shaped sunglasses are pretty easy to come by.

Earrings: In my opinion, pearl earrings — even if they’re fake, are a classic, and can be worn for just about every situation. I bought a pack of three from Kohl’s for my engagement pictures, and haven’t stopped wearing them since. In fact, as I type this, I’m wearing the middle pearl earrings right now. Again, effortlessly chic.  Now that’s the classic pearl earrings. I also have a pair of dangly-ish ones that would be adorable as well. I like to wear the original pearl ones if I have my hair up, and then the more dangly ones if I have my hair down, as they’re a little easier to see through my hair.  (Unfortunately, they were a gift, so I do not know where they are from. Sorry, friends.) Now that blue pair… these are so gorgeous and just deliciously gaudy. They remind me of the earrings that are really trendy right now, the big ones made up of fabric. I think these would be so cute if you had your hair up, maybe a white dress, and then a really fabulous red lip. And alas, these ones were a hand-me-down from my momma, so I do not know where they’re from. 

Watch: Again, a piece of jewelry from my engagement pictures. I think that any sort of white watch would look especially darling, because they’re just so classic. Especially if you were wearing an outfit that only had a touch of white, this would be perfect in tying in the whole look. I don’t have a brown watch, but I do think that would look very cute and polished as well. Especially if you chose to wear an outfit that was predominately navy. The brown would serve as a neutral to the outfit. Especially since black and navy don’t always seem to get along in an outfit.

Lipstick:I am probably one of the world’s biggest advocates for a good red lip. The lipstick that I do have is generally red. And on the fourth of July, what could be better? I envision a nice red lip with a really sleek bun, or perhaps some 1940’s movie starlet curls? I love a red lip with super minimal eye makeup, it really helps draw the eye to the red lip. The one I have featured is a Besame one, Victory Red is the name. It looks really nice paired with a gloss, especially if you don’t want it to feel as lipstick-y. There are so many different wonderful shades of red, and I know that everyone has a preference. This lipstick is more of a blue-red, which I find to be very flattering on me. I would definitely recommend trying different shades of red lipstick before writing it off completely… 

Bag: I’m not one who buys bags very often. I have two. This one, which I got from TJ Maxx, and a black one that I got from Kohl’s two years ago. Again, I will suggest a brown bag, instead of a black one, as I think the brown is a better neutral for red, white, and blue, and also a really great neutral for summer. I also absolutely adore the whicker bag trend that’s been really popular as of late. I think that it looks so precious, and like you’re on a perpetual picnic, and who doesn’t want that? Of course, if you’re spending your fourth on the beach, a nice, sturdy, canvas tote would also do. We love frivolity here at Midwest Mattie Mae, but practicality definitely has its time and place. 

Outfits:

Okay, so for this first outfit, I thought it would be a fun idea to make a swimsuit part of an outfit, as I typically find myself in a swimsuit during the fourth. I  generally opt for one piece bathing suits, but I’m sure you could pair some cute overalls with any swimsuit that you may have. I bought this swimsuit last summer from Target. I’m quite partial to polka dots or stripes for swimwear, and I think that either of them would be perfect for the holiday. Stars too, of course! And I’m quite fond of overalls. I’ve been wearing them since I was a little baby, thanks to my momma’s love of them. This pair was from Zumiez last winter. I, of course, would suggest going to a thrift shop to look for some overalls, I know that a lot of people have great luck finding them at thrift shops. Regardless of where you find them, they’re adorable and perfect for any summer event.

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The outfit below is probably my favorite. It features a hand-me-down red sweater that I’ve had to fix many times, as its quite prone to snags and holes. I remember going to church camp and thinking that the older girls who wore shorts and long sleeved shirts/sweatshirts/sweaters looked so cool. The pairing of shorts with a long sleeved top is the perfect look for later in the day, when it starts getting a little colder out. Watching the fireworks while being snuggled up in this sweater…and these shorts! They’re a pair of Levi’s that I found at Goodwill. They were actually jeans, but I cut them into shorts two summers ago. I really like that I was able to cut them into shorts, so that I could make them into a length that I feel comfortable with, as I don’t tend to like shorts that are too short.

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This outfit’s focal point is the shorts. They’re the cutest little pair of striped shorts, combined with a navy turtleneck. The top I found at Goodwill, and the shorts were another hand-me-down from my Momma, two years ago. I think that any pair of statement piece shorts would be perfect paired with a plain top.  Again, polka dots, stripes, or even stars, with a mixture of red, white, and blue. I generally don’t mix prints, but that’s of course just a personal preference of mine. I usually go for a statement top with a plain bottom, or vice versa. That being said, it can be quite fun to mix patterns, and I think that the fourth of July would be a perfect excuse to do so!

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This outfit is the perfect mixture of casual and dressed up. The delicate white top, paired with a more relaxed maxi dress. They’re both from Goodwill, from years ago. I think that a maxi skirt or dress is perfect for the summer. I think that they’re even more wonderful to wear to the beach, paired with a dainty sandal. I love the floral print of the skirts, because it’s not so fourth of July that you couldn’t wear it on just a regular ol’ day. And I definitely wear this skirt quite often. It’s one of my favorite pieces, and has been in my closet since high school. And I think that the top is not only adorable, but super practical as well. The material is quite breathable, so you won’t get so sweaty on these hot summer days.

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This outfit would be perfect for a day where it may be extra chilly for the entirety of the day. I paired some stretch pants from Van Heusen and this top from TJ Maxx. Again, I’ve had these pants since high school, and I’ve had the shirt for about a year and a half. I like this one as well because its a noncommittal pattern that can work for many an occasion. And how nice does light blue look with a tan? Or in my case… a sunburn.  And the pants look effortlessly chic, and are SO comfy. I know that not everyone wants to wear a pant that is closer to a jegging, but I absolutely love them, and find them to be quite flattering.

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Thank you so much for reading, my friends! Happy “shopping”!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

A Journey into Self-Love

How I Dress to Impress (Myself).

Hello, friends! Happy Friday to you! I hope that it’s going well so far. I’ve had three cups of coffee today and I feel on top of the world, haha! I just hope that I can fall asleep tonight. I didn’t go to sleep until quite late last night. I found a new Instagram account for this woman who has the most impeccable style. It really inspired me this morning when I got dressed. I chose to wear a smart little vintage dress. It’s short sleeved with the most darling collar. It’s red and white striped on top and then it flares out to a skirt that goes beneath the knee. I bought it at an antique shop when I was in high school and haven’t really worn it since. For some reason, I thought that it wouldn’t suit me anymore, but I was pleasantly surprised when I put it on.

Which brings me to the topic of today’s blog: figuring out ways to dress that give us confidence. I think that I could make a little series of this, maybe go over accessories, footwear, jewelry, makeup, and hair. I feel that dressing in a way that makes you feel confident goes hand in hand with self-care. I’m sure I’m not the only one, but I used to wear clothing sometimes that didn’t make me feel good, just so that I would be encouraged to lose weight. Which is not nice to do to yourself, nor is it effective.

I think it’s wonderful that people are experimenting with fashion and trying styles that, until recently, may have been deemed “unflattering” to their body shape. I think that one should dress in a way that makes them feel confident within themselves. Clothing can bring out what one feels like on the inside and that confidence can come from many different styles of dress.

I thought that for this blog, I would go into detail about ways in which I dress to feel confident.

First things first, the shape and silhouette. I have fairly strict rules for the silhouettes that I choose to wear, but I’ve sort of honed in on which of them make me feel my best. For example, when I choose to wear a skirt or dress, I tend to lean toward a-line ones. The smallest part of my body is my waist and I like to emphasize it. In addition, I prefer my skirts and dresses to be an inch or two past my knee. I have fairly short legs, so I find that maxi skirts or dresses kind of swallow me whole, but the midi skirts, or skirts a little bit shorter flatter me the best. I know that for some shorter girls, they prefer a shorter length as it makes their legs seem longer. This would also be a good approach, I just personally don’t feel my most confident with too much leg showing. It’s all personal preference!

Another thing that I find to be very important is the color of what I’m wearing. I prefer to wear more muted colors, one of my favorites being baby blue. I also really enjoy wearing a light pink or a lilac. I find that lilac compliments my green eyes quite nicely. I  also enjoy wearing an intense red color, as it goes nicely with my skin-tone and compliments my blonde hair. I wear a lot of dark green as well, which, again, goes well with my green eyes. I also like going quite neutral with black, white, navy, and creme. Some colors that I find myself avoiding are neon ones, I don’t care for them on me. I also don’t wear much grey. I don’t find it suits me whatsoever. You just have to figure out what you find to flatter yourself, because what flatters you may not flatter others and vice-versa.

I also tend to balance out the fit of my clothes. If I wear a tight top, I’ll wear a looser bottom. And vice versa. I think that for me, this gives a nice balance to my outfits. If I wear a dress that’s more flowy, I’ll pair it with a tight cardigan. If I wear a tighter shirt, I’ll pair it with a looser skirt. For my personal style, I like a real classic look, I find that utilizing this method embraces that. Again, that may not be what makes everyone happy, but for me, it works.

As someone who likes a more classic look, I tend to stay away from more trendy pieces. I try to fill my closet with timeless pieces that I know work for me. I suppose I’m a little boring in that regard. I used to be much more wild in my dressing when I was younger, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized what pieces work for me and what makes me feel the most confident. I like a very classic style, most of my inspiration coming from Audrey Hepburn and even some from Grace Kelly. Both very timeless and simple. I like to dress simply, but put-together. I admire those who are a bit more funky with their looks and I love following them on Instagram!

I think it’s important that we are not so strict with fashion rules and we instead listen to ourselves. I think that fashion rules are good for guidance, especially if you don’t know where to start. I just want to tell all of  my lovely readers that they need to express themselves in clothes that feel right. Confidence comes from within and clothes are such a small part of it, but I do feel as though they’re an important part. It’s important to like what you’re wearing, otherwise you won’t feel confident. You could be wearing the most expensive outfit in the world, but if you hated it, you wouldn’t look your best, because you wouldn’t be feeling your best. And the whole point of fashion, besides making sure we’re not strolling around naked, is to feel our best!

Thank you so much for reading my friends, I hope you have a lovely weekend!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae