20 Days of Christmas - Velvet Floral Top

If you saw my post on Tuesday you already heard me talk about velvet. It seems, for a while, velvet only hung around on fancy drapes and a few relatively expensive clothing items. Now, velvet is every where. I have even seen men’s suit coats made out of velvet.

I mentioned in Tuesday’s post that many of the pieces we now have in our closets are made of a velvet that is manufactured from fabrics like polyester, nylon or viscose. These fabrics give the velvet the characteristics of ease of wear and stretchability. My jacket on Tuesday was more of a traditional velvet without much stretch. This type of velvet is perfect for a more structured piece like a jacket, but for a top we want something that moves with us. Today’s outfit features a piece that is just that.

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I have featured this top on the blog before. You can see those posts here and here. This Notations brand top was a thrift store find. I fell in love with the soft, silky fabric, the floral print and the bell sleeves.

For this particular outfit, I thought it would be fun to veer away from the traditional Christmas colors and throw on my blush colored distressed jeans from H & M. These were a clearance find at the end of the summer. I had to make a gradual move into the distressed trend and personally like less rather than more. These jeans are perfect.

20 Days of Christmas - Velvet floral top

I thought gold would be a good choice for contrast with the dark back drop of the floral top.

20 Days of Christmas - Velvet Floral Top

I grabbed my gold clutch and added a few bracelets in complimentary colors.

20 Days of Christmas - velvet floral top

These LifeStride ankle boots have a bit of a reddish tinge to them, so I thought they were the perfect accompaniment for the outfit.

20 Days of Christmas - Velvet Floral Top

What do you think of this outfit? Do you think this works as a Christmas outfit? What about it works or doesn’t work?

20 Days of Christmas - Velvet floral top

I think what makes this outfit work, is the combination of a dark floral print on a velvet fabric, embellished with a classic gold pendant necklace and a gold clutch. You could have chosen black pants or even a burgundy or maroon for a more elegant look. I was going more for biker babe meets princess. Ha, ha.

i hope you all have a great weekend. I’m not sure how much I’ll be posting over the next week or two as we will be celebrating with family, both in and out of town, but I’ll try to get something up here or there. How are you going to be celebrating? I love to hear from you all so leave me a little love in the comments.

Until next time.

Photo credit Rebecca Trumbull.

Here are a few floral velvet tops to look over. These are affiliate links. All opinions are my own.

Layering Love - Wearing a Vest over a Cardigan - Another Look

After last week's post on layering a longer vest over a longer cardigan, I got curious to see how a shorter vest would look over a shorter cardigan. Finding different ways to use the pieces we already own, not only gives us more choices, but it helps our brain to stay active and learning. In the same way we benefit from learning a musical instrument, solving puzzles or taking on a new activity, figuring out how to put outfits together, helps keep our brains healthy. Check out this older post from Jodie of Jodie's Touch of Style, about how restyling our clothing can help our brains. 

I decided to give you two outfits for today's post. The Rock and Republic jeans are the same for both outfits.  I just bought these for my birthday in January. Kohl's was having a buy one get one 50% off, which doesn't happen too often, so I took advantage of it. 

Look 1: Monochrome

Just like last week's post, I decided to do a matching sweater and matching vest. For this look, I chose black. I chose this shorter A.M.I. cardigan with the big buttons and bell type, 3/4 length sleeves as something different from the usual standard cardigan. Since this was thrifted I had a hard time tracking down the original brand. There is an AMI out of Paris featuring Alexandre Mattuissi designs which are mainly for men, although he is launching a menswear for women this year. There is also an AMI Clubwear, which features more sexy and cute styles for going out, dancing and parties. If you click over there, just be prepared for a bit of skin. All that being said, I am not sure where this sweater originally came from. Ahh, the beauty of thrifting. Ha, ha. 

Layering love - wearing a vest over a cardi - short

I used my Selene Sport (older brand-thrifted) quilted faux leather vest and added my Ralph Lauren leather ankle boots and my sparkly clutch to go with the bling on my necklace and pants. 

Layering love - wearing a short vest over a short cardi
Layering love - wearing a short vest over a short cardi
Layering love - wearing a short vest over a short cardi

Look 2: Not Matching

For this outfit, I switched out the black cardi for a leopard print version by Karen Scott. Karen Scott brand is sold at Macy's. Once again it has 3/4 length sleeves, but a more traditional cardigan shape. The vest is Christopher and Banks that I got a few years ago. I thought the burgundy denim was a perfect compliment to the print of the sweater. 

Layering love - wearing a shorter vest over a cardi

I swapped out my black ankle boots for my knee high Unisa shearling ones. I thought these pulled out the brown in the cardi quite well. You can see how I styled these boots in another post from fall, here. I grabbed a simple burgundy clutch and threw on a few silver pieces of jewelry to go with the silver buttons on the vest. 

Layering love - wearing a short vest over a short cardi
Layering love - wearing a short vest over a short cardi

Here are the two outfits side by side.

I think this is a fun way to get more wear out of both your vests and your cardigans. It is also a perfect way to add an extra layer of warmth around your core. 

I hope you enjoyed this post. Leave me some love in the comments section. I love to hear your thoughts. If you ever have a suggestion for something you'd like to see me feature on the blog, please let me know. 

Have a great weekend!

Here are a few shopping links. This post contains affiliate links. All opinions are my own. 

Friday linking up with Nancy of Nancy's Fashion Style, Jennie of A Pocketful of Polka Dots, Shelbee of Shelbee on the Edge and Jo-Lynne of Jo-Lynne Shane

Holiday Outfit - Casual - Jeans

Welcome to my series on holiday style. I hope that these next few weeks will take you from Thanksgiving through the New Year in creative and inspirational ways. I grew up in a family that rarely dressed up, except for church on Sundays. Holidays were typically ultra casual, in fact sometimes on Christmas we stayed in our pjs or most comfortable sweats all day long. When I got married and we had children our holidays were always spent traveling so that we could spend time with our extended families. Living out of a suitcase for a week was always a challenge, not because I couldn't fit everything in, but because I had to plan ahead! What was I going to wear on each and every day of our time away? And how was I going to look presentable, but still be warm and comfortable?

Now that I am a fashion blogger, I want to dress in a more festive way, but still stay true to my comfortable, relaxed roots. For this series I decided to take a look at three different approaches to holiday dressing, (No! I do not mean stuffing.) The first two weeks will look at a casual approach, the second two weeks a dressy casual approach and the last two weeks will be devoted to a dressy approach. I will follow that with a post on a New Years eve look. So let's begin.

Holiday outfit - casual - jeans

Certainly all of you own a pair of jeans. Some of you may even own a pair of cropped jeans, and/or a pair of distressed jeans. Jeans are a part of my style routine. I wear them all the time, for work, play, dressing up or down and everything in between. Maybe you are not a jeans kind of girl. but whether you are or aren't you can create a casual style using the following simple guidelines.

1. Pick a pair of jeans or casual pants that you enjoy wearing. For this outfit I chose my Vera Wang cropped distressed jeans. Here is a cute pair from Lord & Taylor. You could just as easily choose a pair of mom jeans or a pair of skinnies and just roll up the bottoms for a similar, fun look. 

Holiday outfit - casual - jeans

2. Pick a fun sweater. It doesn't have to be a holiday sweater. I think it is fun to wear something with a holiday motif after Thanksgiving, but until then, any warm cozy sweater will do and over sized is even better. Here is one from Old Navy, Nautica and Target

Holiday outfit - casual - jeans

I found this fair isle sweater on the clearance rack at Kohls. It is amazing the treasures you can find on the clearance rack for just about any season. This is Chaps brand, which is on the higher end of what I like to spend, so finding it on clearance with a good coupon was a win. I tucked it away knowing I would be able to use it this winter. 

If you are not familiar with fair isle, it is a knitting technique that uses multiple colors to create patterns. This sweater also has some silver threads knitted in, so it gives the fair isle pattern some subtle bling. My fave and perfect for a holiday gathering.

As you can see I had a tank top underneath, but it works because the pinky red of the tank matches the pinky red in the sweater. I am always cold in the winter, unless I am moving around, so I like to have an extra layer or two, but more on that Thursday in my Layering Love series. Ha!

3. Add a few statement jewelry pieces. Jewelry can be such a wonderful outfit booster. A fun piece of jewelry can take an outfit from dowdy to divine.

Holiday outfit - casual - jeans

This pendant was another Kohl's clearance find. The bracelet I found on my first visit to Chico's. The two matched perfectly to one another and to the light blue in this sweater. Plus the silver trim goes well with the silver threads in the sweater. 

This brings me to another style question that seems to often come up...to match or not to match? This really is a matter of personal taste. I personally love to have at least a little bit of matching going on in an outfit. I feel that it makes the outfit look polished and gives it a classic, pulled together feel, BUT that is just my personal taste. There are many fashion bloggers who take pride in not being matchy and do a fabulous job at it! Do what is best for you. After all that is what this blogging thing is all about, helping you find your own style!

4. Grab a great bag. Since red is big this fall, I couldn't resist pulling out this Arizona Jeans brand Buffalo plaid tote. A Penney's clearance purchase last year, I got this as a possible Christmas gift, but decided to keep it for myself. Ha, ha. Here is an adorable one from dressbarn

Holiday outfit - casual - jeans

A tote bag is a great way to transport things, especially if you are going to visit family at the holidays. Whether you are going just for dinner, for the day or for an extended weekend, a large roomy tote will give your room for all your essentials, a few little gifts and that book you are planning to read in the car while someone else drives. Oh, and don't forget that water bottle! The holidays can be a hard time to keep hydrated because there are so many goodies and fun drinks occupying our hands 

5. Don't forget the shoes. Just because you are going casual doesn't mean you have to wear sneakers, although a cute pair of hi-top Converse would be perfect with this outfit. I chose my wedge heel ankle boots from Impo. Here is a very similar pair from Macy's

Holiday outfit - casual - jeans

I love these gray suede boots. They are super comfy, but also stylish. I wear these over and over during the cold weather. 

Holiday outfit - casual - jeans

This is a look that I will most likely be wearing over the next few weeks as the holidays begin. It would be a great casual look for a holiday gathering, movie night or a day out Christmas shopping. I hope the tips I gave you will help you come up with your own casual holiday outfit. 

I would love to hear about what outfits you came up with. Leave me a note about them in the comments section, or leave me a picture on my Facebook page. I'd love to see your looks.

Photo credit Rebecca Trumbull

Below are a few shopping options. This post contains affiliate links. If you click on a link, I get a few cents. If you buy an item through a link I get a small commission. All opinions are my own.