austin style blogger gingham winter outfit1 austin style blogger gingham winter outfit3 austin style blogger gingham winter outfit9 austin style blogger gingham winter outfit2 austin style blogger gingham winter outfit6 austin style blogger gingham winter outfit7 austin style blogger gingham winter outfit12 austin style blogger gingham winter outfit15 austin style blogger gingham winter outfit16 austin style blogger gingham winter outfit18 austin style blogger gingham winter outfit20 austin style blogger gingham winter outfit21
coat: Beehive (similar, similar in plus size) // sweater: H&M (similar, similar in plus size) // shirt: J.Crew Factory (similar in plus size) // jeans: AG c/o Shopbop // boots: Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop // purse: Frye c/o Shopbop

While I do actually wear all the outfits I blog, I definitely don't blog all the outfits I wear. Some outfits seem either too basic and boring to share or like things you've already seen on blogs/Pinterest (or worn yourself!). This would have been one of those, except that I had Dago snap a pic of me in it during our Nashville trip (you can see that photo here), and I was like "Huh, that's actually a p cute look." So here you go! An easy go-to outfit this winter for work, errands, brunch, hanging with the in-laws, etc. etc. etc.

Y'all know I'm big on layers, and I appreciate that this outfit lends itself to a wide range of temperatures. When I wore it in Nashville, I think it was in the 20s, I've worn it in the 40s a couple of times when working outside of the home or running errands, and it was in the 60s the day we shot these photos and I wore it for the rest of the day (sans coat). Talk about versatile!

How do y'all feel about bloggers sharing basic versus interesting outfits? I feel like that sweet spot is sharing interesting takes on outfits using pieces most people probably own, but I'm always curious what most people prefer, click on, pin, and recreate.

gingham + plaid


The only inauguration thing I can stand to post today: The Women of Hillary Clinton's Campaign are Not Done Fighting (including one of the most incredible women I've ever had to honor of meeting, Lauren Collins Peterson). Also, after quite a bit of anxiety around it, I've decided to join the Women's March on Austin. Will you be there? Send me an Insta message and we can march together!

Do you have a reading goal for 2017? May I suggest a new book Wonderous, written by a friend of mine from college! If you like fantasy, adventure, and checking in with your inner child, I think you'd love this book. I haven't read it, but I did actually help workshop some of it when he first started writing the story, so I'm super proud and excited that he published a freaking book!

The funniest thing you'll see this week.***

***Update: this Who Wore It Better post made me cackle. You get two funniest things this week!

PSA: Kate Spade has socks now. Yes, they're just as cute as you think.

Loving Veronika's tips for staying motivated when working from home. (I might need to add #2 to my own routine!)

Okay, one more from Veronika because I can't not share it too: how to love your body better this year.

Do you ever make style mood boards? I used to, but I think I need to do one at the end of this shopping freeze with my style intention for 2017 in mind. I'm feeling so inspired by Cathy's mood board for spring!

So appreciate Harper's thoughts on unpaid internships.

I hear it's been an awfully snowy winter pretty much everywhere but Austin. Luckily for you, all these Sorel boots are on sale!

I've been wary of face masks and hesitant to get into sheet masks (though I've enjoyed these far more!), but Fran's three-step facial sounds like the perfect weekend activity.

In case you've never read my personally life changing bra fitting post, Indiana links to it in her own post about discovering her true bra size.

And, as always, a little wishlist: this cutie bell sleeve top, these fun and classy earrings, maybe the prettiest tweed blazer ever, this perfect Valentine's clutch, and this phone case I need right meow.

Be safe this weekend, y'all.

link love

austin style blog tissue turtleneck layered modcloth dress6 austin style blog tissue turtleneck layered modcloth dress2 austin style blog tissue turtleneck layered modcloth dress8 austin style blog tissue turtleneck layered modcloth dress4 austin style blog tissue turtleneck layered modcloth dress11 austin style blog tissue turtleneck layered modcloth dress15 austin style blog tissue turtleneck layered modcloth dress16 austin style blog tissue turtleneck layered modcloth dress13 austin style blog tissue turtleneck layered modcloth dress1
dress: c/o ModCloth (really similar!) // turtleneck: J.Crew (similar in plus size) // boots: Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop // purse: Frye c/o Shopbop // hat: Brixton c/o Shopbop // earrings: gift from Chelsea ModCloth

While we all know that florals for spring aren't exactly groundbreaking, what about florals before spring? The weather has been a little all over the place here in Austin (and maybe everywhere?) so I threw the rules out of the window with some fun color play and pattern mixing.

When I first came across this dress, I knew it would be perfect for remixing, but I hadn't even thought to layer a top under it until recently! I've been sort of treating this black and white striped tissue turtleneck from J.Crew (last seen here and here) like I did my pink Anthropologie off-the-shoulder blouse (seen here, here, and here) in the summer by trying to pair it with just about everything I own, just to see if I can. Every time the temperatures drop, I start searching for dresses to be able to recreate this winter uniform from a couple years back. If I could just get like 10 dresses in this exact shape, I would only wear this outfit equation (top under dress) for the rest of the winter.

Have you surprised yourself in your closet lately? What item can you not stop wearing?

florals before spring

ways to say no

It's January, so I'm good to still to talk about resolutions, right? One thing I've seen on a handful of lists is to "say no more." After years of saying "no," I'm finally ready to start saying yes; however, all that practice has given me some great strategies for declining invitations with no burned bridges or hurt feelings. Whether it's an opportunity that isn't a great fit, a coffee date request that you're not looking forward to, or any other invitation that you just don't have time for, there are ways to make that "no" easier for both you and the person hearing it.

1. Play matchmaker.

Before accepting any invitation or opportunity, I take a minute to think if I'm really the best person for it. In some ways, this has more to do with considering what is a best fit for my brand, but it also applies to other offers. If someone reaches out to collaborate on a project, does someone come to mind who's totally perfect for it? For instance, if someone asks if I'm interested in starting a book club, I know just the girl. Need someone to help you set a clothing budget? My friend has much more experience in that than I do, and I think y'all would get along swell. Want to do a DIY guest post? My crafty friend was just looking for someone to put one together! I love this strategy because instead of focusing on the "no," you get to open a new door for someone (two people, actually) to move forward.

2. Two birds, one stone.

There was a time a couple of years ago when I literally did not have room in my schedule for one more coffee date. Even if it was with someone I wanted to get to know better, my weekly calendar was too booked to fit one in. Instead of declining altogether, I started thinking of one night a week as my office hours. I would post up at a coffee shop while I worked on blog posts or podcast planning and let anyone who asked know that I'd be there if they wanted to come work on stuff and keep me company. If you've got a local co-working group you can join one day a week, that can be a great way to get work done while still engaging in your community. Plus, someone who comes to see you might meet another person in the group, and then step one has taken care of itself!

From a business standpoint, this strategy looks a little bit different. If a brand contacts me wanting to collaborate on a specific feature that doesn't interest me, I'll do my own brainstorm sesh and try to come up with a counter-pitch. Just because the offered opportunity isn't a good fit doesn't mean there isn't a potential collaboration in there that may be more mutually beneficial. Even if there is a specific campaign a company is trying to promote, most are just looking for exposure and to be affiliated with what you've got going on, so they'll be open to what that looks like when working with you.

3. Be honest.

Honesty is always the best policy, isn't it? That's what they say, but there are a couple of reasons it really can be the best way to decline. First, none of us is the only one with a busy schedule. If you can't sacrifice even one night this month for an event, it's not the end of the world. Your time is precious and should be guarded -- no matter what anyone tells you. When you put yourself first, you set an example that saying "no" is allowed, is okay, and is how we all can all strive for work/life balance.

The other reason you should be honest is because, depending on the offer, you may be able to turn a "no" into someone else's "yes." Was something about the pitch way off base? For instance, if they offered way below the industry standard rate, you letting them know could help them reevaluate their ask. Have you ever been turned down for a job and wished you knew why? Giving a little feedback can go a long way!

Do you have trouble saying "no" or wish it weren't so uncomfortable? How do you deal with turning down offers and invitations?

3 ways to say no + why it's totally okay to say it

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