Perfect Dress and Luxury Gift: Yana K

I love a good versatile piece, we all know this by know. Versatility is the key to getting the most out of your wardrobe without spending a fortune every single season. So is investment pieces.

I have been following along with fashion designer Yana K for some time now and am even more in love with the designer and her designs after meeting the designer at a local pop up shop and of course, finally investing in one of her pieces. At the meet up, I love her explanation behind her designs. she has created a line of clothing for all women, for every stage of her life, so she can feel amazing. She doesn’t want us to have to think too much on looking amazing in her clothes. She wants us to feel amazing. She wants us to be comfortable. And most of all, she has created her dresses as a one size fits most situation so we aren’t focusing on the number in the tag. All of these are things I can get behind.

I walked away with this dress knowing that I can wear it all Fall, Winter and Spring long with it’s versatility. The quality is going to make it last season to season, and probably my most reached for piece. This piece looks great on it’s own, cinched with a belt, draped with a cozy cardigan or a little more edgy with a leather jacket. I wore this dress after taking photos to a large art and craft show at the agriculture center in Asheville. I got so many compliments and also was as comfy as the women in their sweatpants. Win Win in my book.

Seriously, you want to add one of these babies to your Christmas wishlist now. Or gift one to yourself or someone you really love that loves fashion. I know I have another dress on my wishlist currently like this one. Because if you are going to ask for a piece of clothing for Christmas, make it an investment piece that I can guarantee you will feel amazing in.

Shop The Look:

Dress // Similar Booties // Belt // White Cardigan // Similar Leather Jacket // Bag // Necklace

 

Thanksgiving Outfit #2: Cozy Knits

Comfort food, pie, cuddling by a fire and cozy sweaters; exactly what any holiday should involve especially  Thanksgiving. To top it off, sweater weather is in full force around here! I love that they are tons of ways to incorporate knits in to your wardrobe these days but I have finally bought an actual sweater. Generally, I lean towards knit cardigans because I’m so hot natured, but this year I took a leap and invested in a nicer sweater to get me through the Fall and Winter.

A sweater is just the most simple way to put together an #ootd, making it especially great for Thanksgiving day! To make the outfit look less frumpy, I paired the sweater with light skinny jeans and over the knee boots. Now pass the pie!

Also sweater dresses and cozy cardigans would be great for some fun layering for Thanksgiving. These sweaters will help create some dimension to your look and add some texture, making your holiday style that much better!

Missed yesterday’s post where I styled athleisure for Thanksgiving dinner? Read it here.

Stay tuned for more outfits this week!

Shop This Look:

Sweater // Jeans // Boots // Bag // Similar Necklace

Florals For Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is just around the corner and planning outfits for the day have already been on my mind. Everything about Thanksgiving is so hectic from cooking, traveling and starting the holiday rush, so our outfit shouldn’t be a hassle. I’ve been trying to come up with outfits that are extremely simple yet festive or unique or fun for the day. Something to take you from lounging watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade to traveling to see friends and family to feasting on comfort foods to being in a food coma afterwards to hitting the stores for Christmas shopping after your food coma breaks.

I love the idea of wearing a subtle floral for Thanksgiving. It’s so festive for a day of thankfulness. This is technically a dress worn as a cardigan paired with stripes and skinny jeans for a laid back look. Perfect for staying comfy yet feeling a little dressed up for the day. I paired the outfit with a fringe necklace, hat and mules to kick up the fun factor and to pull everything in the outfit together.

I love that this outfit screams Fall and is great to wear before being decked out in glitter, sequins, plaid, red or green. But this comfy easy outfit is so easy you can wear something similar to this throughout the holiday season.

Stay tuned next week for more Thanksgiving outfit ideas and the real start of the festive season here on 30 Shades of Stephanie.

Falling In Love With Denim Skirts Again

When I first heard denim skirts were coming back big time this Fall, I was like “nope, not happening”. I was persistent on not bring back this early 2000’s trend. Remember the time in middle and high school when you weren’t cool fashion wise if you didn’t own some kind of denim mini skirt. Even cooler if you wore it with a popped collar shirt or with leggings. Yea those were the days (insert rolling eye emoji now). But they are back, in a little more sophisticated way, and I gave in to the trend.

The reason I gave in to the trend was because I had previously just seen short, butt cheeking hanging out, short denim skirts. But I finally came across a longer version, with a high low hem, side slits and distressing in actual good spots. It was the grown up version and I wasn’t mad at it. Clearly I still have some work to do on styling because I wasn’t exactly sure how to, because the only way I know how is for my 14 year old self. And that’s not good.

I just added layers and more layers and threw on some over the knee boots. I was also hesitant on these as well but kind of love them. I’m wondering if tights and booties paired with sweaters would look to unchic for this? I’m wondering if bell sleeves and mules would be too many trendy things at once? But it’s all trial and error so there’s that. I will keep playing with this and let you know what I think.

Happy Monday friends! Did you know the holiday posts started last week? I posted what to expect here and how to have a carefree holiday season here. Stay tuned for later this week because the holiday fun continues with the perfect appetizer for any holiday function!

Your Guide To The Holiday Season

It’s officially the most wonderful time of the year!! Now I know you think I’m crazy because it’s only November 1st but let’s face it, I’ve been planning holiday posts since early October. Plus we all know the moment the clock strikes midnight after Halloween it is full force Christmas. Now mind you my pumpkins are going to stay put for a few more days but I’m ready to dive head first in to the holidays here with all of you.

Now I’ve been in a creative rut for both fashion and the blog lately. I know I’ve said that before but this time it’s a little different in the fact that I’m not seeing or feeling enough diversity in the blogging world. I feel like we are constantly seeing the same things over and over and over again. To the point where I get tired of seeing the same sweater styled essentially the same way by 15 different bloggers. And the holidays are no different. It’s the same decor, the same wrapping paper, the same items in the gift guides, the same necklace to spice up a holiday outfit, the same sales and the same Christmas dresses. So I want to make my mark for something different. Something we may not have seen a million times (okay over exaggeration) over.

So here’s what to expect: unique gift guides leading up to Black Friday, unique and affordable home decor ideas, DIY ideas, style and outfit inspo, traditions, self care ideas, Asheville happenings and so much more. These sound like a million blog posts you have already read around the holidays. But I promise you I have tried to make mine a little different. Also social media is going to play a bigger role this holiday season (thank the phone lords for that new phone this year). I’m wanting to do “special segments” on Instagram Stories like how to shop locally, gifts I love to give, shopping for Secret Santa gifts, day in the life Christmas edition and maybe even trying all the insane peppermint flavored product. Even though I have a bunch of ideas scratched out I love hearing from you! What would you like to see on 30 Shades of Stephanie for the holidays?

My goal is to have 30 Shades of Stephanie be on the top of the list of websites you visit during the holiday season. I want you to feel inspired, feel the Christmas spirit and included! The world is in shambles lately, a lot of negativity going on, and the holiday season is a time of happiness, cheer and unity for me. So I want us all to feel that and share it.

Cozy, Warm Layers + Halloween Traditions

Fall I love you. Layering I love you. Car rides on the Blue Ridge Parkway to peep leaves, I love you. Rolling fog I love you. Scarf season I love you. Chilly temperatures I love you.

I feel like I’m always running around trying to squeeze in as much of seasonal activities that I can.  Lately I’ve been trying to see as much of the autumnal foilage, cross off lists from my Fall bucket list and see as many misty, foggy mornings as possible. But when running around I just can’t fathom getting dressed up for chasing leaves and walking around in the clouds.  So I go for my trusty favorites.

If I’m going to be doing any type of hiking of course I dress accordingly and will wear leggings, etc. But when I’m not going on a lengthy hike I go with my trusty skinny jeans and a common pullover. I actually acquire a few of these pullovers every season. I wear these fore everything from work, to adventures, to lounge wear. For this particular day, I knew I needed to run a few errands afterwards and was also having a lunch date so I threw on my favorite leather jacket I purchased from Nordstrom a few years ago and a scarf to keep my neck warm. I’m loving all the different earthy colors, textures and layers I have going on in this outfit. And though it may not look the warmest, it kept me warm in the below 50 degree weather.

Stay tuned to next week because I will actually share in more detail how I love styling basic pullovers for every day wear so it doesn’t look like you haven’t changed from pajamas all day.

 

HALLOWEEN TRADITIONS

Like most holidays, we all have our own traditions. Some times they change, some times we don’t stick to them and some times we are trying to find something new to add to your traditions. So I thought I would share my old and newer traditions.

When I was younger we always had typical family traditions. My family was big in to Halloween. We always went to my grandparent’s house where we had some kind of homemade soup. Oyster stew, chicken stew, chili or chicken noodle soup. No matter which one it was always soup. We always went trick or treating in the same neighborhood and always ended the night with scary movies. As I got older, the soup remained a constant but the activities changed, like parties and haunted houses.

As I’ve gotten older, live on my own and start my own traditions, I have tried to incorporate some old things and some new. Every single year I no longer do the trick-or-treating but instead am the lady who passes out candy and comments on each costume. All while each child asks about my cat and some kids have even just walked in to my apartment. It’s interesting to say the least. It never fails, I always try to make a soup I like because honestly I’m not the hugest soup fan (even though I had it every Halloween, still doesn’t mean it was my favorite). So I have a few recipes for soups (love this one) I actually like or I try to make a crock pot meal (Winter staple in my house) or a casserole of some kind (easiest one I have ever made). Some thing easy but warm and hearty. After the trick-or-treating is over, I make a wicked cocktail or have a pumpkin beer and put on a horror film. But no Halloween night is ever over without watching Hocus Pocus. Since moving to the mountains I have actually stayed up extremely late on Halloween to wait for the first snowfall of the season, it has happened a few times since moving here.

Let me know what your traditions are in the comments!

This Is Halloween + Spooky Playlist

The week leading up to Halloween is amazing! If you are a die hard Halloween lover the whole month of October could be amazing for your wardrobe. But leading up to Halloween you can literally just about get away with wearing anything. If you look crazy no one even bats an eye.

So since you can get away with just about anything I wanted to test out a few new items and see if I was going to keep them. Like these striped pants! A very bold statement piece. A very funky piece. So I threw on a blazer, mind you that I didn’t pair with a top or bra because testing out y’all. And two things I’ve come to realize. I love these pants and will be wearing them to a few events this winter. I can’t wait to style these for the holidays. Yes I love them. And secondly this blazer cape thing needs to be altered before I wear it again.

But I got to try out an insanely wild outfit and if anyone had said anything at dinner I would have simply told them I was Beetlejuice or Jack from Nightmare Before Christmas.

So since Halloween is a little under a week I also wanted to share a “spooky” playlist. Play this to get in the mood, play it while your passing out candy or play it while your dressing up. Either way it will add some Halloween fun to your life.

 

Styling Summer Dresses For Fall + Fall Playlist

So I think it’s officially time to start packing away all the Summer clothes here in the Appalachian mountains. Or is it? Starting this year, I had this genius idea to start buying pieces I actually love. More quality over quantity kind of pieces. And for the most part it actually worked out. So I’m not wanting to pack up every piece of clothing I bought for the Spring and Summer because I invested more money in these pieces than I ever have before. Including this dress I picked up from a local boutique.

The dress is essentially sleeveless, but I love the long line and the added fringe detail on the side. And the neutral color doesn’t scream Spring or Summer like a lot of seasonal dresses. So while I’m packing away some shorts, tanks and really seasonal dresses, some are not being packed away like this number.

The easiest way to transition a dress to cooler temps is with layers. But since this already has some added fabric and texture from the waist down I wanted to keep it more simple. Like with a leather jacket. It creates a block in the heaviness that could be added to this outfit, it keeps the outfit a little more edgy and city chic and it adds a great component of warmth.

The final two steps to transitioning a Summer dress to Fall is with booties and a hat. So simple and effortless. There are countless other ways to transition a dress like with tights, leggings, scarves and even more layering. But if you have a jacket, booties and a hat, you have your bases covered and can keep that dress in your closet for longer; even until next Summer.

 

SIDE NOTE!!! I have been really in to transition my closet for Fall and have been spending a lot of time at home prepping for the craziest two months of my year (more on that after Halloween). So I have needed a soundtrack for all the evenings spent at home that make me feel warm, cozy and at ease. So here is my Fall playlist. Hopefully you get some Fall isnpo from it.

 

White Jeans After Labor Day

It’s an age old fashion rule that we are “supposed” to follow. No white after Labor Day. But I’m here for breaking rules. And I’m here to help you break that rule.

White denim has become more and more popular the past two Spring and Summer seasons. The “IT” denim if we will. But now that you have invested in some good pairs of white denim how are you going to transform these jeans in to the colder months? It’s actually pretty simple.

To transform your white denim to Fall and Winter all you have to do is add darker colors or neutrals. Pretty simple. In order for white denim to work, I would try adding darker heavy tops like chunky sweaters, oversized cardigans, moto jackets or even utility jackets or vests. I paired mine with a very neutral top and a long line utility vest this past weekend when it was still a little warm in the afternoons. There is no way I would have been able to wear this #ootd this week, but I have also paired a chunky rust colored sweater with these exact jeans HERE.

For you to be able to rock the white denim now I would avoid lighter colors unless paired with something darker to avoid looking like a Spring chicken. I would avoid light colored sweaters. Save those light greys, blush pinks, oatmeals and cream colored sweaters for your regular wash of denim.

So not only is it a little intimidating to wear white denim in the Fall and Winter months but it can also be an extreme challenge to find the perfect white denim. And I’ll just tell you it’s going to take hard work and lots and lots of trying on. And denim shopping is like bathing suit shopping. Denim will fit each person differently. So here are four options for white denim investments that work for me, but they also work for a lot of size ranges and women:

  • Good American White Denim– I got to try these on at an event while on vacation and fell in love. These are amazing and I can’t believe I’m saying that about a Kardashian product. These are investment pieces (only reason they didn’t come home with me that day) and carry a hefty price tag. Great thing is there is a full size range!
  • Levis– Did you know Levis carries a full size range in denim as well? Levis is a love it or hate it pair of denim. But I like their fit.
  • Nest– My white pair of denim is from Nest Boutique + DIY Studio in Asheville. They have a full size range and these jeans are from their plus collection.
  • Old Navy – I think Old Navy is a love or hate denim as well. But I love it for an affordable option. And they have a few great white denim options in a full size range!

 

 

The Color Of the Season: Rusty Orange

Denim- In Boutique Only // Sweater

The must have color of the season is floating around everywhere. In bottoms, tops, sweaters, cardigans, dresses and even booties. And there’s a good reason. This rusty orange is the perfect Fall color. Just enough to remind you of changing leaves and pumpkin patches. But the great thing about this popular color is that it works so great with every skin tone and there are so many varieties of this hue. I’ve seen more coppery colors, more orange based colors, more sienna (brown based) tones and even more peachy hues. And since it’s the color of the Fall season, there are so many patterns, textures and options for just about everyone.

I found this sweater this past week for under $30.00 in the hue. Since I’m not a huge chunky sweater person (more a cardigan girl) I decided to go for it because if it’s over next season oh well. And I’m in love. So glad I picked this up. Not only is the color perfect for Fall and all my apple picking and apple cider drinking needs, but the shape is amazing with the high low feature and it’s not itchy. Yes, a sweater that isn’t itchy! So even though I’m not a huge sweater wearer this may be getting some good rotation this Fall and Winter season.

I hope all you had a great weekend!