Spring Trend - Crafted Pieces

If you have followed my last few posts you know I am doing a short series on some of the Spring 2019 trends. The crazy thing about this whole trend idea is that there are many differing opinions on what exactly those trends are. I tried to narrow it down to some of the more prominent ones, but I may have missed some and picked up on others that I thought were more interesting. Today’s trend is definitely one I like, crafted pieces.

What is a crafted piece, you may wonder. Basically, crafting means that it is or is like home made. Think of pieces that are crocheted, knitted, tie dye or various forms of weaving, beading and so on. These pieces are going to make a statement all on their own, but will easily add pop and pizazz to any outfit. Think sixties hippy meets stylin’ granny. If that sounds a little too funky for you, hang in there and you might change your mind.

Spring Trend - crafted pieces

I grew up with a mom who crocheted and she had numerous sisters, my aunts, that also worked their wonders with yarn and needle(s). Mostly, my mom made afghans and doilies. One of my aunts made bears and clowns and sold them at craft shows. Occasionally something would come across our doorstep from cousins’ and others’ hand-me-downs, that would include a crocheted piece of clothing. I remember a vest, in particular that I really liked made of separate crocheted squares pieced together. I guess it was my exposure to these crafted pieces that has given me the love I have for them still.

This knit ruana is Sonoma brand and I found it at Kohl’s on the clearance rack at the end of last summer season. I like that it is a neutral color and that it has actual sleeves sown into it. Many ruanas merely drape over the arms and down the back, which always makes me feel a little less at ease, for fear it will shift and I will have to keep arranging it to keep it in place. Having a bit of a sleeve solves this problem. You can see another post on a ruana without sewn in sleeves by clicking on the link to this post from last summer.

Spring trend - crafted pieces
Spring Trend 2019 - crafted pieces

I love the mix of open and more closed weaving on this piece.

Another trend that I didn’t do a specific post for is pattern mixing. This spring pattern mixing is bigger than ever. For those of you who still haven’t come on board the pattern mixing trend, the fashion gurus are making it easier by manufacturing pieces that have patterns already mixed on them. We saw some of the last few seasons with baseball type tees donning both stripes and flowers. You’ll see more of it this year and the patterns are going to be bolder than ever. I’ll give you more examples on Thursday’s post where I talk about the scarf pattern trend.

I decided to do some of my own print mixing on this outfit by pairing this subtle paisley print top with my thrifted plaid Mossimo trousers.

Spring Trend 2019 - Crafted pieces

Once again, the key to print mixing is in both color and pattern. Although, I have a feeling this spring we’ll be seeing more pieces with a more Anything Goes feel.

I kept my jewelry minimal since this Liz Claiborne top from JC Penney already has some of its own embellishment. This leaf necklace was a recent find, also from Penney’s.

Spring Trends 2019 - Crafted pieces

My shoes are thrifted and are Natural Soul brand. My cute little clutch was a recent clearance purchase from DSW. Make sure you check out the clearance sections at these types of stores. I found this clutch and three kimono/ruana’s that are going to be perfect for spring and summer. The prices were too good to pass up.

Even though palm print was last spring’s trend I feel that it is one of those that could become timeless, sort of like leopard print. Especially when in a complimentary piece like this that will easily become a go to for summer.

Spring Trend 2019 - crafted pieces
Spring Trend 2019 - Crafted pieces

I guess technically you could say I am mixing four prints in this outfit. Plaid, paisley, palms and the weaving on the crafted piece. What do you know, I styled an outfit that is filled with prints and alliteration. Ha, ha. There is texture also happening in the woven bag, the chain, the crochet, the tassels and metal embellishments on the top and the gathering on the empire waist and sleeves. There is, indeed, much going on in this outfit. Do you think it works or is it too much?

Spring Trend 2019 - crafted pieces

I love to hear you thoughts, so leave a comment or two in the comments section.

Now, to announce the winner of the $30 Target gift card. First of all, I want to thank all of you who are my regular followers, who regularly leave some love on the blog. Your input means so much to me. Secondly, I want to thank all the new subscribers who signed up as part of the giveaway and I hope that my blog will not disappoint you and that you will find inspiration and encouragement on a regular basis here.

And the winner is: Shirley Hulbert

I will be contacting you via email, to get your info, so I can get the card out to you as soon as possible. Congratulations!

I’ve included a few shopping links for crafted pieces. These are affiliate links. All opinions are my own. I’ve included a number of pieces I thought looked fun. Enjoy perusing!

Is it a Kimono or a Ruana? Week 6

This is my final installment in this series on kimonos and ruanas. If you have been following along you know there is a difference between these two pieces, but often the way a piece is put together, makes it more of a hybrid, or something I call a "kiana". A piece like this has both the longer front drape of a ruana, but also the more formed sleeves of a kimono. Today's piece is a kimono and this one is a heavier piece that will take me well into fall. I found this cute little number at a Bealls store in Florida last December, when our whole family spent a few days together in the St. Petersburg area. It was cold, so shopping was a fun alternative to the beach for my daughters and I. 

fashionblogkimonostyle-57.jpg

I decided to pull my outfit colors from the flower embroidered on the front left of the kimono, thus the red and olive green. Here is a picture of the outfit without the kimono.

fashionblogkimonostyle-73.jpg

This olive top is thrifted and Chico's brand. The crop pants are from the Meijer clearance racks and is a brand called Stitch Star. 

Once in a while things get rather interesting when my daughter is taking my pictures. I think she gets bored so she was making rather suggestive comments about the flower on my chest, which elicited this response from me. Of course she had to get it all on camera!

Anyway, you can see the floral embellishment includes the deeper red like my pants and a lighter pink. I just got a pair of distressed pink jeans from H&M and I think they will look nice with this kimono. There is also just a hint of green in the leaves, thus my olive green top. The marled black knit of the kimono is a nice alternative to an all black look. 

kimono or ruana - black floral embellished kimono

i went for brassy gold in my accessories and grabbed my small heart embellished black clutch and black strap block heeled sandals to complete the look. 

kimono or ruana - black floral embellished kimono
kimono or ruana - black floral embellished kimono

Aren't the snaps on these pants a fun addition. I am looking forward to styling these pants more different ways this fall. 

Here is a back view, showing you the hi-low hem line of the kimono. 

kimono or ruana - black floral embellished kimono
kimono or ruana - black floral embellished kimono

What do you think of this outfit? Do you think the red pants are too bold? Would you where bright colored pants? Do you own a kimono? How do you like to where yours? I'd love to hear you thoughts, so leave me some love in the comments section below. If you are not sure how to comment, just read the instructions below. 

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Have a great day!

Photo credit Rebecca Trumbull. Make up Rachel Christensen.

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Is it a Kimono or a Ruana? Week 5

I have two installments left in this series on kimonos and ruanas. I have found that adding a couple of these pieces to your closet will give you miles of extra wear on things that you might consider more plain or mundane. The kimono or ruana is a piece that can stand alone, meaning it doesn't need much help to make an outfit look fabulous. For most of these I have worn the kimono/ruana over an outfit built from simple pieces like a skirt and a tank, pants and a tank, etc. The over piece is what takes center stage, which it should. 

Today's look is a different sort of kimono/ruana. Once again, I am going to call this one a "kiana" because it takes the long drape of the ruana, but makes it more kimono like by sewing the sides together to create a sleeve of sorts. When I first got this open weave piece, it was only sewn at the sides by a few stitches. I liked the way it stayed in place, but soon the stitching came undone and I noticed it was harder to keep the piece from slipping off, so I sewed the sides back together. 

kimono or ruana - open weave navy "kiana"

I decided with this open weave look, I could focus more on the entire outfit standing out, thus the tropical print pants and graphic tee. I got these fun pants at H&M on the clearance rack. I don't wear this loud of a print too often, but I loved the fit and thought it was time, once again, to climb out of my comfort box. 

At first, I tried this on with a number of tank tops, including white and a light blue, but nothing seemed right. It was then I remembered, I had this thrifted tee and the greens matched perfectly. 

kimono or ruana - navy open weave "Kiana"

I chose the pink accessories to pull out the little bit of pink in the pants. Yes, my necklace is wrapped over my boob! Sometimes, I forget to make sure everything is positioned just perfectly. Ha, ha. Oh well, just keeping it real!

kimono or ruana - navy open weave "kiana"

Just a few words about this shirt. If you follow my Instagram feed, then you have seen this before and I said a similar thing then that I am going to say now. It is often hard to see beauty in tragedy. How do we see beauty in school shootings, wild fires, volcanoes, mud slides and things like disease and addictions? The point is not that those things themselves contain the beauty, but that there can be beauty, even amid those difficulties. Communities coming together to help families of victims, amazing fire fighters who risk their lives saving others, and people who come out stronger than ever going through loss and heartache are all beautiful. 

There is a verse in the Bible, which says,

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.
— Romans 8:28 (NASB)

I'm not going to preach to you, because this is a fashion post, but I truly believe this. Gratitude plays a huge part in seeing beauty and in bringing healing when we have gone through difficulties. Finding, even the smallest things to be thankful for, is the first step to realizing exactly what this tee represents. I'll step off my soap box now. Ha, ha.

kimono or ruana - navy open weave "kiana"
kimono or ruana - navy open weave "kiana"

Here is a back view of the "kiana".

kimono or ruana - navy open weave "kiana"

Besides the open weave allowing your outfit to take center stage, rather than the kimono, it also allows air to get through. I have found many kimonos are make of polyester, poly blends, viscose or silk and actually can make you feel more hot and sticky. That's perfect when you are in an overly air conditioned building, but not if you are walking at the fair or an outdoor summer festival. An open weave outer piece is a great option for the waning days of summer. 

kimono or ruana - navy open weave "kiana"

I hope you enjoyed this post. What do you think of this outfit? I'd love to hear your comments on how you style a kimono or a ruana in the comments sections below. 

I've included a few shopping links for you to look over. These are affiliate links which means if you click on a link I get a few pennies. If you purchase something through my site, I might get a little commission. I appreciate all the clicks you can give, but even more I appreciate hearing from you. 

Have a great day everyone!

Photo credit Rebecca Trumbull. Make up Rachel Christensen.

Is It a Kimono or a Ruana? Week 4

Here I am, once again, taking a look at kimonos versus ruanas. Both of these over pieces are excellent additions to your wardrobe. They help spruce up a more plain outfit and add a lovely, interesting, layer to a work outfit or a date night look. The lighter layers not only add interest, but a little extra warmth for those overly air conditioned offices and restaurants. If you didn't see my previous three posts you can look at those by clicking on the link. Week 1, Week 2 and Week 3. Week 2 gives a good overview of the difference between the kimono and the ruana, if you were wondering.

This week's post centers around a hybrid piece that I am going to call a "kiana", as I feel it has both the cut and fit of a ruana, but the essence of the kimono. This is another online purchase from Christopher and Banks that I got for a good deal. 

Kimono or ruana - green and blue striped "Kiana"

For this outfit, I wore a pair of Sonoma olive trousers, a cream colored St. John's Bay tank, and my blue SO flats. 

Kimono or ruana - green and blue striped "kiana"

I am calling this a "kiana" because it is shaped like a ruana, but is sewn on the sides, creating the illusion of sleeves, thus the kimono. Once again, you can see that the outfit by itself is rather plain, but adding this sheer over piece makes the outfit really pop.

kimono versus ruana - blue and green striped "kiana"
Kimono or ruana - blue and green striped "kiana"
kimono or ruana - blue and green striped "Kiana"

I received this fun textured clutch for Christmas from my younger daughter a few years ago. I love the color and the texture. Texture is another way to add interest to an outfit. Think about adding texture in the form of a jacket, a scarf or a bag like this one. Jewelry can also be a way to add more texture. Think pendant necklaces with fringe or even a beaded bracelet like this one I am wearing that I found in a clearance basket at Chicos

kimono or ruana - blue and green striped "kiana"
kimono or ruana - blue and green striped "kiana"
kimono or ruana - blue and green striped "kiana"

Here is another look at the entire outfit. 

kimono or ruana - blue and green striped "Kiana"

What do you think of this piece? Do you think calling it a "kiana" is a good name? What are some ways you style your kimonos or ruanas? What are some ways you add texture to your outfits? I'd love to hear your feedback in the comments section below. 

I've included a few shopping links below for you to peruse. These are affiliate links. All opinions are my own. 

Have a wonderful day. 

Photo credit Rebecca Trumbull. Make up Rachel Christensen

Is it a Kimono or a Ruana? Week 2

Last week I styled a short kimono. You can see that post here.  This week I am styling a ruana. What exactly is the difference between these two outer layer pieces? A kimono is more of a jacket. It has sleeves that can be narrow or wide, long or short. It is usually open in the front, but can come with or without a belt or tie to keep it closed. A bathrobe is really a heavy weight kimono. A ruana is one large piece of cloth that falls down the back, over the shoulders and down the front. It has no sleeve closures, rather just drapes over the shoulders and is kept in place with your arms, although I have seen and heard of people using a pin or a pretty brooch to keep them in place. A ruana is usually worn open, although the fashion police won't put you away if you wear it with a belt for a more cinched in look. 

Is it a kimono or ruana - striped ruana

This tasseled ruana was a spring purchase from Christopher and Banks. To make the look more streamline, I went with a tank top and a dark gray pencil skirt. Here is the outfit before adding the ruana.

Is is a kimono or a ruana? - Striped ruana

You've seen this blush tank with bling before on my blog. I am an avid proponent of shopping and re-shopping my closet. The tank is Relativity brand and the pencil skirt is Liz Claiborne. Both of these pieces were thrifted. The black heels are Comfort Plus brand and the straw bag was thrifted as well. I opted for minimal jewelry with the beaded choker and a few beaded bracelets. 

Kimono or ruana - striped ruana
kimono or ruana - striped ruana
kimono or ruana - striped ruana
kimono or ruana - striped ruana

The next two pictures show you the width of the ruana, which is typically a wider silhouette than a kimono.

kimono or ruanan
kimono or ruana - striped ruana

Do you own a ruana? How do you like to wear it? Is it more of a summer weight or a fall weight? I am seeing fall styles beginning to fill the racks at most retailers. Kohl's was having some good sales on kimonos and ruanas and right now, you might find deals on the lighter weight ones that you could use for the rest of the summer and next season. 

kimonos or ruanas - striped ruana

I'd love to hear your feedback on this outfit. Would you wear something like this? I think this outfit is a great office look and the ruana would add a light layer for those overly air conditioned buildings. 

I've included a few shopping links for you to peruse. These are affiliate links, but all opinions are my own. 

Thanks for stopping by the blog and be sure to check back on Thursday to see what I am featuring on my Old Becomes New column. 

Photo credit Rebecca Trumbull. Make up Rachel Christensen