Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Month in Review: December 2013

December- that "Most Wonderful Time of the Year"- has already come and gone! It's been a very merry one here on Never Fully Dressed and we hope it was for you and yours too. So here's to looking back- and then looking forward- as we ring in the New Year!

Merry Outfits

Merry Movies
This month we continued the tradition of sharing classics perfect for the Christmas season (or, let's be real here- any time of the year! Great films are always watchable) with It's a Wonderful Life  and Judy Garland's hit Meet Me In St. Louis. The Cinema Style series showed off the contrasting styles of sisters in  A White Christmas and The Thin Man gave some New Year's Eve inspiration.

The Thin Man Outfit
Merry Plans
This month has been a busy one with many bitterly cold days! I've been continuing to find my feet with a new job (I now run a computer lab at an elementary for those who were asking. Because it is a school, you will almost never find me talking much about it in order to respect children's privacy). But there was still time for many of the events of the season- we shopped (maybe you did too, using some of the Gift Guides for Men, for Women, for Mothers, for Last Minute Stocking Stuffers, or shopping for the Greater Good?) and decorated our tree! We also found time to visit many of our dear friends! It is so funny; up until they arrived for our wedding last June so many of my friends I hadn't seen in over a year and now I've seen them all again in less than six months! A day out with one friend, breakfast with others, a dinner party for yet more.  We even attended a Christmas party for The Boy and I met lovely new people too (And it was relaxed enough I wasn't all nerved up and New People. A holiday miracle!).  I am so blessed to know so many to love.

Merry Finds

Inspired by the movie UP

Cleaning out your closet for the new year? Maybe this will help.

Unlocking the mysteries of a newly discovered ancient city

You can be rude, but it will cost you extra.

Women in the Media

Lisa's suspender outfit makes me swoon; Poor Little It Girl's plaid scarf does too.

Beauty of Mathematics

People of Color in European Art History

So, this perfectly sums up MY LIFE

A modern-day woman wears a corset and writes a tell-all book

Carrie is adorable in this, but if you prefer tart over sweet why not look at Anna's post-apocalyptic looks? 

Labels Against Women

Tourism in North Korea! Would you go?

Grammar has a new kid in town- The Prepositional Because. 

The Soubrette Brunette's adorable telephone outfit! <3

Google sums up 2013 in an inspiring video

Finally, start your New Year out right with these Five Ways to Do Good

Monday, December 30, 2013

Remix: Tweed Blazer

tweed, houndtooth, blazer, remix, clothes, outfits,
Hi all! Why don't you scoot on over to Flock Together, where I'm sharing  more of my favorite item to remix. 

Friday, December 27, 2013

Cinema Style: The Thin Man

Comedy and murder? No one was quite sure if it would work, but The Thin Man (full review here) carried it off with style- quite literally. With The Thin Man as only the second pairing out of nine of William Powell and Myrna Loy (six of these nine would be for Thin Man sequels) these two would be towed as King and Queen of Hollywood for much of the 1930s.  Their characters Nick and Nora wined and dined their way to solving murders, all while leading a glamorous life filled with drinks and nightclubs.

the-thin-man, movie, film, pencil-skirt-, green, faux-fur, coat, fox-terrier,
Shirt | Cardigan | Skirt | Coat | Shoes (Similar Here) | Hat

Many thirties looks were more tailored suits; here Nora Charles (and you!) can get that same tailored look another way- with colorful separates. Though this era did not have true pencil skirts, straight, knee-length skirts were popular. This green plaid one adds a touch of whimsy, while the cardigan makes a slightly softer impression than a suit jacket would. Add a hat and era-appropriate shoes to pull the look together. The final touches? Nora never went anywhere without her fur coat or the Charles' trusty companion, Fox Terrier Asta! Today, whether you are looking for vintage fur or faux fur, your best bet is Etsy. As for the puppy- well, whether you looking for a dog of your own or just want to look at cute pictures, why not stop by the Midwest Wire Haired Fox Terrier Rescue site?

plaid, outfit, movie-still, The-thin-man, movie, film, cinema-style,

The Thin Man was all about glamorous escapism to Depression-era audiences. So the film's wardrobe department was replete with evening gowns- and therefore is perfect inspiration for your own upcoming New Year's Eve look. This detective duo typically had their denouement while at a dinner party for extra drama, and Nora wears a black, bias-cut gown to this climatic scene. She might also throw on her new fur (Nick's Christmas gift to her in the film, a present that is prominently featured), and shoes for dancing at a club after the murderer is revealed. She and her husband pretty much drink their way through the film and several sequels too, until the Hayes Code puts an end to their fun. Translated into modern-day, Nora- and you!- would look styling for New Year's with a martini (no one has to know whether it is a virgin drink or not) in one hand and this tongue-in-cheek phone case in the other!

the-thin-man, movie, film, New-year's-eve, NYE, evening-gown, faux-fur, fur-coat, martini,fox-terrier,
Evening Gown | Coat | Shoes | ClutchPhone Case | Glass

Friday, December 20, 2013

Film Flick: It's a Wonderful Life

We're continuing a Holiday Tradition on Never Fully Dressed by sharing some classic holiday films. Some might be institutions in your home this time of year; others might be delightful new friends, but they're all sure to impart some the season's spirit and sense of fun. Consider it my way of wishing you and yours nothing but the very merriest.  

Even if you've never seen the film, everyone knows what It's a Wonderful Life is about. A man in dire straights meets an angel, and, after wishing he had never been born, finds out what the world would have been like had his wish been reality. But if you've never seen the film then this next sentence might blow your mind- that's not really what most of the story is about.

Oh, yes, that is the plot, but the majority of this long film actually chronicles the life of that man- one George Bailey of Bedford Falls. The audience meets him as a stand up boy who dreams of seeing the world. As he grows into a young man, circumstances continually throw life-reversals at him, all of which seem aimed at keeping that vital dream out of reach. We see the sacrifices, the joys, and eventually the actions that will eventually drive him to contemplate suicide that fateful night on the bridge when divine intervention steps in.

For a Christmas film with an ultimately bright message- that we all really do have wonderful lives- there are dark undercurrents in this film. Both the audience and George get reminded that we can have wonderful lives even without the dreams we have longed for, but it cannot erased that we have had to leave a dream behind. And perhaps this strong undercurrent is present because there were darker and rawer emotions present in many of those who made this film.

For James Stewart, it was his first film on returning from war, and one he had needed to be convinced to take (though he would later cite George Bailey as his favorite character). He had been especially nervous about whether he still had the chops for those on-screen kisses; it needn't have worried him though. The director shot the scene completely unrehearsed to keep the emotions fresh and he ended with a scene so passionate it had to be severely edited to meet the Hayes Code! Likewise, several scenes show Stewart actually crying. The other kisser was Donna Reed as Mary in her first starring role.
Just as the war had effected James Stewart, American movie-goers had been changed by the war. Director Frank Capra had seemingly had the Midas' touch throughout the nineteen thirties, but It's a Wonderful Life was decidedly a box office failure. Part of this could be attributed to the expense of the film (the Bedford Falls Main Street was a set on a backlot that spanned over three city blocks!), or to stiff competition (The Best Years of Our Lives had open a week earlier). Still, the film never made back what the cost making it had been. Many now saw Capra's bright and wholesome messages in a different light, and the director earned the nickname "Capra-corn" for the corny films he made.

Corny or not though, the film became a holiday tradition for many in the seventies, when the movie came to the small screen. And it is still worth watching today. The film is long, and the quite literal "Dues ex machina" seems a little like something out of a Christmas Card (then again, the story idea originated on a greeting card!) Still, it is surprisingly romantic- even a bit seductive. The chemistry between Stewart and Reed is palpable and the moral is one we all need to hear every now and then. So go and watch this wonderful reminder that we all have A Wonderful Life.


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Gift Guide: Stocking Stuffers for Grown-Ups

Stocking-stuffers, for-grownups, gift-guide, stocking, christmas-shopping, presents, dominoes,coasters, pocket-hand-warmer, phone-case, rifle-co., calendar, bath-salts,
1. Bath Salts | 2.  Literary Tattoos | 3. Stitch Calendars | 4. Rifle Co. Phone Case | 5. Pocket Hand Warmer | 6. Dominoes | 7. Coasters

1. Bath Salts - Give the gift of a luxurious bath. This is the brand of bath salts used by both man and wife religiously in my household, so consider it vouchsafed !

2.  Literary Tattoos- I've a whole gaggle of bookworms to shop for and each one would be tickled by these Jane Austen temporary tattoos.

3. Stitch Calendars - With the new year right around the corner a desk calendar seems like a good plan. This is one of the  most unusual ones I've seen, plus it is from a company that donates for every purchase you make.

4. Rifle Co. Phone Case - This phone case combines both style and function- plus it isn't too bad on the wallet either!

5. Pocket Hand Warmer - If your loved one lives in a chilly climate this handy device might make their day.

6. Dominoes- This gift will be fun for the whole family! Or if they don't like dominoes, why not a pack of cards or travel-sized board game?

 7. Coasters- Grown-ups have grown-up furniture. Help them to protect it with coasters. This mushroom dotted set is stylish but gender-neutral enough to make it into almost any living room.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

What I Wore: At The North Pole

Flannel-02 copy

What I Wore: Sleeveless Top (Gap; Similar Here), Shirt (Target), Jeans (Gap), Belt (Hand-Me-Down), Shoes (Hand-Me-Down; Similar Here), Necklace (Stitch+Adorn; Similar Here)

The past week has been busy, busy, busy! Though still chilly, the bitter cold had let up, leaving in its wake lots and lots of ice and dirty snow. That still didn't stop us from jaunting up to Billings over the weekend to see a friend who was passing through for breakfast. We also looked at Christmas decorations in a few stores, even heading down to Red Lodge. Though we'd missed their Christmas Stroll, Red Lodge still had a strong Christmas feeling. It's a ski town and the snow proved it. In fact, there was so much it felt like the North Pole.

Speaking of which, are you getting excited as Christmas draws near? With the new job and Thanksgiving being so late many of our favorite Christmas traditions have been left undone. But thee are always new ones too. In Church on Sunday we listened to a Christmas Cantata which was was breathtaking, for example. Are there any Christmas Traditions you loved doing this year? Or ones you wish you had or kept as a tradition?

Monday, December 16, 2013

Bouqs Flower Company Review

White, Ranunculus, Bouqs, flower company, online flower, review, product review, Never fully dressed, without a style, withoutastyle,
This is nothing so charming, so likely to enrich you day-to-day life and make you smile as flowers in your home. I know some big cities have flower markets, but for most of us, flowers are a more rare treat.

That was why, when the Bouqs Flower Company approached me about receiving and reviewing their floral services, I knew it was a must! They are a rather unique online floral business. They have a very limited (curated!) selection of bouquets for customers to buy from. Bouqs doesn't believe in the fuss and added expense of guilt-tripping the customer into decided whether they want extra ribbons, extra filler, a teddy bear, balloon or what have you. They believe in beautiful, fresh flowers at affordable prices. All bouquets from this company start at forty dollars. Most of the time a standard bouquet is a dozen flowers, but the number can increase (usually for spray flowers) or decrease (usually for larger blooms like Ranunculus). However, you can double the amount of flowers for only ten dollars more and QUADRUPLE the number of flowers for only only thirty more than that; so a doubly large bouquet would be fifty dollars and their largest offerings are seventy dollars. This includes the cost of shipping, no matter where you are in the United States. All flowers are grown by the company themselves in two different locations- from a South American farm and from one in southern California. Flowers grown out of country will take six days to make it to your door, because they must go through customs. Flowers from their California farms can get to you overnight, and you can easily shop by flowers' growing locations on their website too.  No shipment comes with a vase, which is a plus to me as  I think vases add to the cost, especially when everyone already seems to have a ton of vases.
White, Ranunculus, Bouqs, flower company, online flower, review, product review, Never fully dressed, without a style, withoutastyle,
Bouqs only cut what they sell and the flowers are sent directly to you- talk about fresh! This way, because the locations are both sunny and warm, they can ensure fresh flowers, not hothouse plants. Plus, this company uses energy efficient means to run their company and ensure all their workers have living wages, places to send their kids to school, and health insurance. To me, a company that treats its employees right as well as its customers is important!

Knowing all of these facts just made me more excited to try out the company, but would it live up to the hype? This story has a happy ending- the company totally lives up to its reputation.

 I chose to get a double sized bouquet of white Ranunculus blooms, thinking they'd feel fresh but Christmasy in white. Since these flowers are grown out of the country, I'd had to wait for them to arrive. When you order your flowers from Bouqs, you can choose the day of the delivery and whether the recipient needs to sign for the flowers (so they are not left sitting on a cold stoop). Sadly, where I live doesn't allow for the signing option (FedEx's fault, not Bouqs), but I was able to pick a day I'd most likely be at home, and the flowers arrived fine. As you can see, they come very securely wrapped, and with very clear instructions on the box. The first day the blooms seemed small. Overnight they opened up much more fully, so much so I had to get a larger vase to give them more breathing room. I think it seems very typical that shipped flowers might take a day to start looking their best, especially since we are experiencing such cold weather here. The first day, I was a little bummed that there wasn't more greenery and had considered going to get some more (maybe pine branches to keep with the season). So glad I didn't! The next day I even took out some of the greenery to make room for everything! These people clearly know what proportions to send. My bouquet looked great for the first three days; started to look a little peaked by day day four, which might have been due in part to its' journey in such bitterly cold temperatures as they were delivered to my house.

White, Ranunculus, Bouqs, flower company, online flower, review, product review, Never fully dressed, without a style, withoutastyle, Basically- the company was easy to work with when ordering, everything shipped fine, and the flowers are beautiful. So would I recommend this to you?

Well, personally, I like shopping from local florists since they are local businesses. But I'd still recommend using Bouqs, especially if you want to give flowers to someone far away and especially if you don't know of a good florist already (as with any small business industry, some florists are great to work with and others have horrible customer service). Here's why I'd recommend using Bouqs- They are easy to use, and the flowers are fresh (some florists order arrangements from larger companies which means the flowers might sit in a warehouse). Plus, the prices are pretty great- especially if you double  the size of your order. Where else could you get 24 red roses for only fifty dollars?! I like that they don't fuss with vases or balloons or such (the only time I think a you might want a vase is if the flowers are for a funeral service or they are going somewhere like a hospital where there might not be vases handy). Plus, Bouqs has gorgeous flower choices!

Would you try Bouqs? What bouquet do you like the best from them?

Friday, December 13, 2013

Cinema Style: White Christmas

White Christmas - has there ever been a more perfect Christmas movie? Not in my view! It is a holiday institution in our household, and part of that might be- just a little bit- the gorgeous outfits showcased on the screen. You can read more about the film in the full review here, but when singing and dancing are needed to help save a Vermont inn from finical ruin, our heroes call on none other than these two impeccably dressed sisters. Will they be able to save the inn- and themselves- from heartache?

White Christmas Cinema Style

shirt (similar here), sweater, necklace, skirt (similar here and here), shoes, belt

Famous for her dancing, actress Vera Ellen, who played sister Judy Page, had an impossibly tiny waist that was even more accentuated with full skirts that swished as she moved. In this film, she also had high necks on every costume. Taking a slightly different twist on her outfits we've inverted some of the colors, but the nineteen-fifties flavour still comes through beautifully while still maintaining a 21st century feel.

In contrast to Judy's looks, Rosemary Clooney's character, older sister Betty, could be seen in pencil skirts and lowers necklines rather than full skirts and turtlenecks.  To imitate this casual look from Betty, add a brightly colored top and knot it. Add in some colorful bakelite bangles for that extra fifties flare!

White Christmas Cinema Style

shirt, bracelets, belt, skirt, shoes

Are you more into the sleek lines of Betty in  pencil skirts and wiggle dresses, or the full skirts Judy sports?

Thursday, December 12, 2013

What I Wore: Build It Up

What I Wore: Dress (Elana; Similar Here), Cardigan (Old; Similar Here), Scarf (Target; Similar Here), Sweater Leggings (Similar Here),  Hat (Vintage; Similar Here), Shoes (hand-me-downs; Similar Here)

I'm over on Flock Together today, remixing this Building Print Dress from Elana of Room 334. Stop on by!

Film Flick: Meet Me In St. Louis

With the month of December well on its way, we're continuing a Holiday Tradition on Never Fully Dressed by sharing some classic holiday films. Some might be institutions in your home this time of year; others might be delightful new friends, but they're all sure to impart some the season's spirit and sense of fun. Consider it my way of wishing you and yours nothing but the very merriest.  

Step back into a nostalgic rendition of Americana when you Meet Me in St. Louis. Today, it might be considered a bit of an odd duck- both as a Christmas movie and perhaps as a film in general. Told in four segments -one for each season of the year- only a few scenes take place at Christmas, though that is where the iconic song "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" is first introduced. Instead, the film undertakes to chronicle the lives of a close-knit and perfectly ordinary middle class family living in St. Louis in 1904. As everyone in the city is excitedly anticipating the opening of the World's Fair, the audience gets a peek into the Smith family home. We see the older girls' love lives through their trials and rewards. We watch the younger children's antics, and the neighbor's comings and goings. But tensions rise when the father announces they are moving to New York! It hardly sounds like a scintillating plot. In fact, back in 1944, when the film was being made, it didn't sound to movie executives like anything an audience would pay to see either.

The film is based on a serial story by Sally Bennson, which was semi-autobiographical. Once purchased though, the story languished through several bad attempts at making a screenplay of it. Not until Arthur Freed, creative force behind most of the musicals of the 40's and 50's, got ahold of it, did it become something. In fact, it became so much of something that, when it hit theaters, it would be MGM's biggest grossing film to date!

Part of it's success was due to the talent brought on board. Vincent Minnelli was a little known director who made his name with this technicolor musical. He was a perfectionist who understood understatement. Of course, things were not always smooth sailing for the director. The star of this ensemble film, was Judy Garland, but she was not happy to be there, at first. Though she'd become a big name through Wizard of Oz some years earlier, MGM had typically cast her as the plucky teen- the little girl with the big voice. Meet Me in St. Louis would be the first technicolor movie she'd made since Wizard of Oz, but, at twenty one, she desperately wanted to move on from playing teenaged parts. Added to that, the endless retakes demanded by the director drove her nuts. Still, after seeing the dailies, she realized this film portrayed her as more beautiful than she'd been allowed to be on film before. Perhaps this was the first step that lead to her relationship and eventual marriage to Minnelli.

Garland wasn't the only one causing problems on set. Margret O'Brien was the child actor hired to portrayed the youngest Smith daughter, Tootie, but her mother wanted more money. They considered casting a light man's daughter to play the role instead, but ultimately, O'Brien got the role- and the raise. When a light fell and nearly landed on top of the young girl, that same lighting man was admitted to a psychiatric  institution!

Despite these set backs, this film became one to be numbered among many of the actors' favorite roles (yes, even Garland!) Its subtle and beautiful use of technicolor and camera angles makes it visually a treat to see. For modern audiences, the pace might be a bit unexpectedly slow at times. A second viewing was much more enjoyable than the first, because I went into the film anticipating that slower pace. I was able to drink in the details- and, of course really enjoy Judy Garland as she crooned that classic Christmas song.  So come on, you'll Meet Me in St. Louis, won't you?


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Gift Guide: For Your Mother 2013

mothers'gift-guide, gift, present, holiday, Christmas, books, clothes, iPad-accesory,women-over-forty,

1. Scarf | 2. Crafting Book | 3. Necklace | 4.  Embroidered Pullover | 5. iPad Accessory | 6. Jane Austen Book Set | 7. "Multi-Topper" Cardigan (Similar Here) | 8. Flowers

I know what you're thinking.

"Kristian, you just shared a gift guide for women. Mothers are women too! What gives?" And you're right, obviously. Your mom may like things from that gift guide and other woman may enjoy these gift ideas too. But this isn't for just any woman, nor just any mother. It is for your mother. She's a special woman, and as the mother of a grown woman, she's aging gracefully and moving into a new part of her life than she was when macaroni necklaces cut mustard. So whether you are shopping for Mom, for Grandma or some other female mentor your life, here's some tips on getting them that something extra special. 

1. Scarf- These make fantastic accessories and the rich velvet texture adds interest for the eye. 

 2. Crafting Book - My mother-in-law loves to craft. Just about anything and everything- if you can make it, she will. So this ultimate book on crafting is a great tool for her and the crafter in your life too.

3. Necklace - Older woman are not only more replete with wisdom and experience, they are also more able to pull off larger, statement jewelry without being overwhelmed. This necklace has large beads, but the western wear style keeps it a classic that will last her years. Plus, it is made fair trade so you give a gift that keeps on giving. 

4.  Embroidered Pullover - Like with necklaces, women in their forties and beyond may be more adept at wearing pieces with more structure to their shape. The embroidery adds interest but the like-color on like-color keeps things classic and classy.  She could wear it with jeans for a more casual look or paired with slacks and a jacket for work. 

5. iPad Accessory- Not all mothers are tech-savvy, but my mother could read books on her iPad for hours. The unfortunate side effect? Sore wrists! This makes comfortably holding your iPad a snap! 

 6. Jane Austen Book Set- Thank goodness for paperbacks, but this Christmas why not gift Mom with beautiful hardbacks of classics, such as this set of Jane Austen's works? Whether she's a hardcore Austen fan, or would be picking them up for the first time, the quality binding is sure to please.

7. "Multi-Topper" - Draped items like this can be a valuable asset to any wardrobe, especially for women beyond their twenties. They work great in both work and casual situations and hide areas we are insecure about without losing the wearer in the folds. This clothing item is not only able to act as a cardigan, but can be worn multiple ways. If this seems too avante garde (or too pricey), I've also linked to another great cardigan in beige

8. Flowers- What woman doesn't love flowers? They are sure to brighten not only her day but everyone's as they're sure to look lovely on the table at dinner too. Bouqs is an online flower delivery company that wants to make ordering flowers online simple. They have two locations where they grow flowers and you can order from either one. Those flowers grown in South America will take six days to arrive and will be forty dollars (fifty for double the amount of flowers and seventy for a triple sized order) including shipping. Those from Southern California can be overnighted and are fifty dollars. The bouquets are simple, tasteful and affordable. It is hard to beat that! 

P.S. Looking for more ideas for gifts for Moms? Click here!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

What I Wore: Petticoat Parade

What I Wore: Petticoat (David Bridal), Tights (Target; Similar Here), Shoes (Old Navy), Dress (Flea Market in Paris; Similar Here), Sweater (Similar Here), Belt (Vintage; Similar Here)

I'm going to level with you- this outfit is actually one I wore a few weeks ago for church. But though I've been so excited to share it with you, I'd been waiting for the perfect backdrop (you would be surprised how many conversations in your house revolve around where we will be shooting- is the lighting right? What about he mood? Is it too windy?) and then, last weekend, when we knew bad weather was about to plunge us into negative temperatures, we went on a photoshooting spree to get outfit shots to last for the next little while. So how lucky was it then, that the perfect backdrop should appear, right? It's a vintage mural for a vintage look, but keep reading to see how it was a Goldilocks moment (Just Right!) even beyond the obvious!

Now, I love petticoats (as can be seen here at our wedding). I also love not having to wear them everyday; driving in them means a poof of epic portions under the steering wheel. But they are so utterly ladylike and make the day feel like a Special Occasion when you wear one. They also remind me of winter. Maybe it is because they are an extra layer (albeit one we don't usually see), but they give a skirt such fullness.

Add my vintage dress I picked up at a French flea market on our honeymoon, and a vintage belt from my grandmother, and it all felt very fifties indeed! Likewise, I also felt very...wife-y in this. Not only is the dress a gift from The Boy on our honeymoon, but the petticoat is the one I wore at our wedding and Coca-cola bottles played a very prominent part in our reception. Which is where it all comes full circle- a perfect backdrop, indeed!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

What I Wore: Winter Whites

Winter Whites, winter, white dress, dress, long sleeved dress, fur, scarf, outfit of the day, coat, wyoming,
Winter Whites, winter, white dress, dress, long sleeved dress, fur, scarf, outfit of the day, coat, wyoming,
Winter Whites, winter, white dress, dress, long sleeved dress, fur, scarf, outfit of the day, coat, wyoming, Winter Whites, winter, white dress, dress, long sleeved dress, fur, scarf, outfit of the day, coat, wyoming,
Winter Whites, winter, white dress, dress, long sleeved dress, fur, scarf, outfit of the day, coat, wyoming,
What I Wore: Dress (Modcloth; Similar Here), Tights (Target; Similar Here), Scarf (Vintage; Similar Here), Coat (Etsy; Similar Here), Socks (Modcloth), Shoes (Old Navy), Belt (Similar Here)

My favorite line from the children's book The Phantom Tollbooth is "I'm the Whether Man, not the weather man. After all, it's more important to know whether there will be weather than what the weather will be!" And I'm sure that is what reading the blog feels like sometimes. You know there is weather and that is enough.

But it is not enough. You guys, the high for today is ONE. So, clearly, that is all anyone can talk about, can think about. Just as clearly, these photos were not taken today, or even yesterday. They are from this weekend. So, while I am bundled in a ski jacket and layers and layers, I'll be dreaming of this outfit.

I've actually styled this white dress several times before, but this might be my favorite reiteration of it. Something about the simple and subtle color scheme reads as sophisticated to me, and the bows on the tights lens just the right amount of whimsy to keep it fun.  Clean and bright feeling, Winter Whites are almost enough to trick me into believing that winter is as fun and romantic as all the Christmas song make it out to be.


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Gift Guide: For Women 2013


1. Teapot | 2. Betty Goes Vegan | 3. Pajama | 4. Magnetic Scrabble | 5. Shirt | 6. Purse | 7. Bracelet

Whether it is a co-worker, a childhood friend, your favorite roommate from college or even a sister, we all have beloved ladies in our lives. But it can be tricky finding something that is cute, fun and their style (not yours) as well as in a decent price range (no one likes feeling like someone over spent on them, especially if they are not in a place to reciprocate). Fear not- here are some ideas that should be perfect for your best friend!

1. Teapot - Isn't is a delight to imagine your dear friend curling up with a good book and a pot of tea, all thanks to you?

2. Betty Goes Vegan- One of my best friends really knows her way around the kitchen, and now that she's experimenting with a vegetarian and lactose intolerant lifestyle, this book might be just the thing!

3. Pajamas-  I discovered the indulgent luxury that is comfortable loungewear when a friend gave me a pair at my Hen Party this summer. Now, I want to convert the rest of my friends too!

4. Magnetic Scrabble I love words, but my friends love them even more and can probably all handily beat me at this game. How fun would an on-going game be, where you make your next move each time you hang out in her kitchen?

5. Shirt - clothing for other people can be tricky, but a basic like this works (nay, looks great!) on just about any age and shape.

6. Purse - My sister loves a good purse. Maybe you know a lady like that? This dainty offering could be dressed up for church or a night out, or make its debut in a more casual setting too, like on errands (paired with a classic trench, perhaps?) or even the office.

7. Bracelet- So, I got my first rope bracelet from Popbasic (And, let me just say, while on the more pricey end, a Popbasic Box would make a fantastic gift too!) and I'm now hooked on 'em. They are soft and this one has an adjustable chain so they won't jangle and get in the way. Plus, this particular one comes from Given Goods, a company that only uses fair trade artisan goods and/or companies that donate. This this will really be a gift that keeps on giving!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

What I Wore: A Cherry on Top

red-hat, mustard-sweater, skinny-jeans, pussy-bow, outfit, never-fully-dressed, without-a-style, wyoming, december,
red-hat, mustard-sweater, skinny-jeans, pussy-bow, outfit, never-fully-dressed, without-a-style, wyoming, december,
red-hat, mustard-sweater, skinny-jeans, pussy-bow, outfit, never-fully-dressed, without-a-style, wyoming, december,
red-hat, mustard-sweater, skinny-jeans, pussy-bow, outfit, never-fully-dressed, without-a-style, wyoming, december,
What I Wore: Hat (Montana Vintage; Similar Here), Shirt (H&M; Similar Here), Shirt (Gap; Similar Here), Jeans (Gap), Shoes (Hand Me Downs; Similar Here)

The Boy sent me these images with the title "Cherry on Top." It made me smile. It's talking about the hat, of course (which I have been over the moon about), but even the phrase is so bright and cheery.

In all honesty though, it might be something of a lie. I haven't really been all sunshine and cherries. Oh, I should be. The holiday was, in many ways, wonderful. We celebrated with family friends, the same ones I grew up celebrating with but with whom we'd been unable to for a few years. It was wonderful, like being reunited with family. My sister visited and two other friends who have been like sisters to me visited as well. And I, lucky girl, got to see them all. And now it is that Most Wonderful Time of the Year with Christmas carols, and cocoa, and things all tied up with pretty bows. It is the time to be counting your blessings instead of sheep.

And I am.

But I am also starting a new job, which while good, is also always going to be stressful because it is change. And I seem to be struggling with feeling unwell, and there is a deep, persistent sense of something... off, some days. Some days feel like you ought to be even happier, that you are not being happy enough, especially with the holiday hype. I am never one to nay-say the season, for I love it all, but...do you ever feel this, from time to time yourself? Some of this is probably a lack of vitamin D from not enough sunshine (December 22nd cannot get here fast enough, I think!), but I am looking around trying to find both where I fit and where I am happy- what makes me happy.

I wasn't really sure I wanted to write about this. It is the holidays, after all, and many joyous things happen to me. But I also thinks it helps to know, if you have been down, that you are not alone, and to remind myself of my own remedy. Like Bing Crosby croons, count your blessings. Put things into perspective. That's real cherry on top, I suppose- that I have so many to count; it might be better to say that I've a whole bowl full of cherries, if only I remember to look at it that way.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Dogeared Page: The Silver Chair

The Silver Chair

"I wish I was home," said Jill. 

Eustace nodded, saying nothing and bit his lip. 

"I have come," said a deep voice behind them. They turned and saw the Lion himself, so bright and real and strong that everything else began to look pale and shadowy compared with him. In less time than it takes to breathe Jill forgot about the dead King of Narnia, and remembered only how she had made Eustace fall over the cliff, and how she had helped to muff nearly all the signs, and about all the snappings and quarellings. And she wanted to say "I'm sorry" but she could not speak. Then the Lion drew them toward him with his eyes and bent down and touched their pale faces with his tongue and said:

"Think of that no more. I will not always be scolding. You have done the work for which I sent you into Narnia." 

- The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis

In December, Why Don't You...?

On the lake, tuxedo (LOC)

Photo from the Library of Congress

Attend a  vespers concert

Hang a garland

Have breakfast in bed

Roast some chestnuts for a healthier holiday treat

Go iceskating

Make a glitter house

Learn to make a Tom and Jerry's

Research your family tree

Prepare a dinner for a sick friend or new parents you might know

Drink hot cocoa with abandon

Friday, November 29, 2013

Month in Review: November 2013

November was one of those months where I was still saying, "I don't know where October went!" until suddenly I was halfway through November and confused as to how I lost six weeks of time! Regardless of this though, there were still some pretty unforgetable things happening around Never Fully Dressed.

Unforgettable Outfits

glitter-shirt, scarf, red-pencil-skirt, plaid, yellow-cardi,wyoming, outdoors, never-fully-dressed-without-a-style,

Unforgettable Mail

I shared tips on How to Write a Holiday Letter, and, speaking of the holidays, if you're looking for a special present or two this season, why not take a look at these Subscription Packages for Women? For other things you can get in the mail, here's the third edition of Unusual Mail too.

Unforgettable Movies

Sultry Mae West slinked her way to fame in She Done Him Wrong and the sweet duo of Jimmy Stewart and Margret Sullivan fell in love in The Shop Around the Corner. Meanwhile we took style cues from two period films with The Ghost and Mrs. Muir as well as Bonnie and Clyde. 
The Ghost & Mrs. Muir outfit, outfit, movie, cinema-style, november,2013

Unforgettable Plans

Much of this month was tangled up with the passing of my grandmother, whom I helped care for; her funeral; and then with catching up on all we had put on back-burners when dealing with that. Then later this month, I got a new job (I had been substitute teaching previous to this) at an elementary. So still won't be saying a whole lot about work for children's privacy, but I'm looking forward to getting to know this bunch of great kids. Like so many others, we also got to enjoy many friends and relatives visiting over the holiday and lots of yummy food.

Just because life was going full-throttle, doesn't mean Never Fully Dressed wasn't up to fun new things too though! We caught up with several bloggers to get their secrets on how to organize our closets. Things got a little sentimental with this month's Dog Eared Page, but who wouldn't tear up- just a little- with The Velveteen Rabbit? And now that the holiday season's officially begun, here is a Gift Guide for Men and a list of shops that give back to help you with all your present-buying needs.

out-of-print, shop, shops-that-give-back, stores-that-donate, november, 2013, holiday-season,

Unforgettable Finds

A fascinating new series about sustainable fashion from the blog Windward Wearables

Ke$ha + The Little Mermaid = Awesome

After reading Lean In, this article seemed especially pertinent

Which Feminist shirt is your favorite?

An app to make Pinterest even more addicting

Telephone Boxes become Libraries

What are we looking for (when we're looking at our phones)?

Tippi of Africa

Why do you comment on blogs? 

This skirt looks like a picture book you can wear.

Famous Women as Disney Princesses

Not sure this is true for every blog, but it is for mine!

Elana rocks the Polka Dot and I'm digging this golden look from It's Not Her, It's Me.

These photos show the art in the everyday object

Agree or disagree: "I Like Myself More Online and I Think Everyone Else Does Too"

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Gift Guide: For Men 2013

Men, Gift guide, gramophone, book, dog, doorstop, soap, sweater, valet, boy, present, gift,

1. The Monocle Guide to Better Living | 2. iPhone Gramophone | 3.Dog Doorstop | 4. Cedar Soap| 5. Sweater | 6. Survival Kit | 7. Valet

1. The Monocle Guide to Better Living If you're not familiar with the magazine The Monocle, you probably ought to be-  it is aimed at those interested in International affairs, culture and travel. Though either gender can enjoy both the magazine and this book, this Guide to Better Living will be an interesting read to enrich a man's life.

2. iPhone Gramophone- based on designs from the early nineteen hundreds, this gramophone requires no electricity or other power to work. Simply set an iPhone or iPod in it and the natural resonance the wood and horn create will amplify the sound. Eco-friendly and very stylish too!

3.Dog Doorstop- So almost every man I know either owns or at least loves a Wired Hair Fox Terrier Dog. This doorstop is perfect though, even if your man has never set eyes on one. Heavy, well made and full of personality, this is sure to look good in any office, den or home.

4. Cedar Soap- Soap might seem a bit tame for a gift, but wether it is soap on a rope or something from Bath and bodyworks, women love getting bathing supplies. Men are just the same. This soap boasts a clean, "manly" scent and is sure to be of use.

5. Sweater- A Sweater in winter is sure to be a no-brainer and this one from Landsend is classic and should last years. Plus, no matter his style this is sure to fit in with a basic pattern and color.

6. Survival Kit- My father-in-law loves to escape to solitude in the wilderness every so often. if you know someone who's the same, why not get them this handy survival kit. It has everything you need in case something goes wrong in the woods (and, heck, is fun to tinker with even for when everything is going just dandy!)

7. Valet- The Boy teases me about how "man pockets" hold everything. I don't know about everything, but men seem to have their whole life stored away in those pockets. This handy valet gives him somewhere to empty those pockets at the end of the day. No more searching for those lost odds and ends that got misplaced the night before!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

What I Wore: In Snowfall

layered-outfit, snow,snowfall,winter-outfit, winter-clothes,wyoming, never-fully-dressed-without-a-style, tweed-blazer, tweed-jacket,
layered-outfit, snow,snowfall,winter-outfit, winter-clothes,wyoming, never-fully-dressed-without-a-style, tweed-blazer, tweed-jacket,
layered-outfit, snow,snowfall,winter-outfit, winter-clothes,wyoming, never-fully-dressed-without-a-style, tweed-blazer, tweed-jacket,
layered-outfit, snow,snowfall,winter-outfit, winter-clothes,wyoming, never-fully-dressed-without-a-style, tweed-blazer, tweed-jacket,

What I Wore: Coat(Etsy; Similar Here), Blazer (Old; Similar Here), Sweater (Stitchfix; Similar Here), Jeans (Gap), Boots (Old; Similar Here), Scarf (Gift; Similar Here)

As if the weather gods sensed people would be traveling this coming week, Winter Has Come. And come to stay by the look of it! Though that was not keeping people inside- Saturday alone was a-buzzing with a fund-raising Zumba class, a following benefit lunch, a craft bazaar, and the annual turkey shoot (You do not shoot turkeys. You shoot bebe guns to win fowls) all downtown. I found the cold a bit more intimidating with a scarf layered over a coat layered over a blazer layered over a sweater. Instead, the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special far more enticing, though we did make it to some of the other listed events too.  Of course, a sinus infection was also a great motivator for staying bundled and safely inside... 

Still, it is pretty, all that snow. So long as all My People get through the roads safely, I'll even say it is delightfully appropriate to the season, and turn up that Bing Crosby song "Snow." In the meantime, safe travels, don't forget to pack emergency supplies in your cars and have the Happiest of Holidays this week! 
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