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! 

Monday, November 25, 2013

What I Wore: Glimmer and Shine

Sequin, Shirt, Outfit, Wyoming, Never Fully Dressed, Withoutastyle, flock together,

What I Wore: Shirt (Via Ashley; Similar Here), Tank Top (Forever 21), Jeans (Wet Seal; Similar Here), Scarf (Gift; Similar Here), Boots (Similar Here)

With only the last dredges of autumn, the days can sometimes get a bit dreary. So I added some sparkle to my days by borrowing this shirt from Ashely of Southern California Belle. Come stop by Flock Together for a closer look! 

Shop for the Great Good

This Holiday Season, as you are doing your shopping and gift giving, why not look at a gift that keeps on giving? Today, there are many companies that aim not just to make a profit but to give back- whether that is through donations, through working with charities, through employing artisans with fair wages and safe working conditions, or through a combination all three! Below are just a handful of such companies who also specialize in women's clothing and accessories. And best of all- every one of these stores provides quality goods at very reasonable prices. Get out and get looking- maybe the perfect gift is waiting for you! 

Given Goods
Items from Given Goods
Can I just say, I find this an amazing and inspiring online site? This online store sells women's accessories as well as many home decor items. What sets is apart is that all items are made by local artisans making a living with an ethical wage, or by companies who donate to charities, or both. When you click to view any item in their story, you will not only get excellent information about the product, but also about who makes the item, what impact the production of the item has, and how it makes that impact. Beyond that, there is also a blurb about the company at the bottom of the page to give you more information. Gorgeous goods and great, sustainable causes? People I'm shopping for might just be finding something from this store under their Christmas trees!

In their own words this company "ethically source(s) every product in our line. We actively seek out arisans in imporverished areas, giving them access to a global market and encouraging their craft through technical training and design assitance. We treat all our artisans with respect, providing them with good working conditions and livable wages." They also strive to be as eco-friendly as possible using organic or recyled material and cruelty free leather. They sell cute clothes, great accesories and home decor. 
I've mentioned this company before, but for any who has somehow missed their presence on the web, this company makes women's clothing that is vintage-inspired and is always modest and beautiful. Many of their items are made in the United States, and five percent of their profits are donated to Accion, a non-profit that provides micro-loans and education to help people get out of poverty by building their own businesses.

Just as the name implies, these people make Ts- as in T-shirts. These are not the T-shirts of band concerts or college parties, though the prices are as reasonable. Made mostly of solid colors and with elegant draping, these are shirts that are perfect for a professional setting and a variety of ages. A portion of this companies proceeds are donated to help two charities (The Nepal Rescue Project and Restore NYC) to help rescue victims of human trafficking. They also employ women who were rescued, both in New York and Nepal, helping to give them good jobs and restore their lives and independence.

Items from Toms
Toms is a company that makes high quality shoes and eyewear. Their names seems to be a by-word for quality, which makes me eager to try out their goods. They run what they call "one for one programs." Basically, for every pair of shoes or eyewear that you purchase, they give a pair to a person in need. On their site, they share the processes of how and what they give, when working with  seventy-five plus "giving partner" charities. They give their own Toms shoes (including snow boots for those in need in colder climates), and also will sometimes provide entire school uniforms, which are often mandatory for school attendance in certain areas. Likewise, when you purchase a piece of eyewear, Toms provides money for someone in a third world country to have their eyes checked and get prescription eyewear.

Mata Traders focuses on ensuring that their clothing- mostly cute dresses and other apparel for women- is Fair Trade. This means, that though their items are made in India and Nepal, instead of factories, they are made by small cooperatives comprised mostly of women. The women are paid a fair and livable wage, have safe working condition and reasonable working hours. They do their sewing in studios or even at home. Mata Traders also has a focus on more sustainable living, so that the quality of the items are higher because they are built to last longer. Amazingly enough though, their prices are not any higher than most stores. 

One of the many things that is unique about this shop is that it is a small business- a one woman show. Fellow blogger, Dus of Cuddly Cacti, felt so strongly that Mexican artisan clothing and goods needed to be sold at a fair price that she created her shop, Mitla Moda. The store sells embroidered shirts, belts and accessories like bracelets. The artisans set the prices for their goods, and the store owner is working out how to reinvest any profit into maintaining the store and reinvesting back in the rural communities the artisans live in. If southwestern or Mexican handicraft is what you are looking for, you could not do better than buying here.  

Items from Out of Print
If you're anything like me, you love to read (or knows someone who does)! Celebrate your love of literature by uniting it with a love for fashion. This company makes stylish T-shirts with great book's iconic images, quotes, and designs for men, women and children. Not a T-shirt person? They also have a plethora of other goods, including phones case, tot bags and even stationary! Best of all? For every item sold they donate one book to a community in need with their partners Books for Africa. 

Want more shops that give back? Read up at Shop With Meaning to find  more stores and sales that give back, provide ethical wages and working conditions for employees, and/or use recycled or organic materials.

P.S. No compensation was given to review these stores, nor did any of these stores ask for a review. The opinions here reflect my own thoughts and values. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

Cinema Style: The Ghost and Mrs. Muir

I first saw The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (full review here) last year when a friend suggested it as the evening's entertainment at our outdoor movie party, and it remains one of my favorite films. At once romantic, and sombre; serious and comic; it tells the story of a widow who moves into a house rumored to be haunted.  I won't say anymore less some of the surprises are ruined, but it is a film with a historic setting. The movie was made during Hollywood's studio era in the 1940s, but set on the Atlantic coast at the turn of the century. So the costumes are from the 1900s as filtered through the lens of those living almost fifty years later. But don't think that means you can't get fashion inspiration this (or any historically set) film!

The Ghost and Mrs. Muir outfit

Shirt, Skirt, Cape, Shoes, Hat

Gene Tierney as recently widowed Lucy Muir wears some gorgeous costumes. Rather than directly copy any certain outfit and risk looking like you're off to a fancy dress ball, take inspiration from certain elements of this great wardrobe. Many of Mrs. Muir's clothes, naturally, are black for mourning,  but that color flatters almost everyone. I also looked for blouses with high necklines and feminine details like lace at the collar, bodice or sleeves. Skirt hems were also quite long at this time, and living near the Atlantic also meant many were wool. The skirt above incorporates both of those elements. Over this ensemble why not try a plaid cape like the one Mrs. Muir wears so well? Add a (black) hat and some retro-inspired shoes for a look that brings the previous century into the current one, and is both at once windswept and put-together.

The Ghost and Mrs Muir Costumes

Whenever looking to the films for outfit inspiration, don't limit yourself to the ladies' costumes! For example, the house's previous owner was a seafaring captain. Why not try his outfit on for size? Slip into a fisherman's sweater (preferable in a dark or earthy color) and juxtapose the loose fit of the top with sleek cigarette pants. Add further menswear-inspired touches with a pair of oxfords, a cap, and an oversized blazer to stylishly emulate the Captain's look. A simple gold chain necklace adds just the right amount of feminine sophistication to keep the look feeling pulled together rather grubby. It is an outfit that's ready for anything- just like you!
The Ghost & Mrs. Muir outfit

Blazer, Sweater, Pants, Shoes, Hat, Necklace (Similar Here)

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Remix: Slouchy Sweater

grey-sweater, pink skirt, plaid, jean-shorts, annie-hall, classic, outfit, remix
grey-sweater-remix, outfit, scarf, golden-skirt, white-skirt,
grey-sweater, remix, outfit, red-jeans, shorts,

This slouchy grey sweater is a workhorse in my wardrobe (though it has been absent these recent months. Not sure why. Still wear it all the time. Wearing it right now, in fact!). A few years ago, if you had asked me about clothing items- or tops at least- that were not more or less form-fitting, I would have have looked at you askance. But I've come to embrace the mystery the well-draping item can bring. It reads as easy and as confident. I like to think this means I'm a bit more secure with my body (or maybe I have more to hide?) too. 

This remix digs back pretty far, almost to the beginning of my blog. Though my style has changed quite a bit, the outfit with the green shorts was one of the first on the blog I was truly proud of. My first "Style Blogger" look, complete with tights and shorts in one outfit! It is not horrible; but it might be a bit blush-worth. Just a bit. While I'll still indulge in the occasional trend, I think this is a prime example of why you need to choose which trend to try carefully, rather than just what a style blogger tells you- except me, of course. You should always follow my advice to the letter ;)  

Anyway, with winter almost upon us, (according to the calendar anyway. Snow is already here) it seemed like the perfect time to look back on different ways to style up this sweater. Do you wear slouchy sweaters? Any styling tips to share? 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Letter-Writing: Holiday Letters

Getting mail is a ton of fun, but in an increasingly digital world, writing it can sometimes be hard. This blog post series about Letter Writing aims to make it easier.

letters, writing letters, holiday letters, christmas letters, how to write letters,
photo credit: Lauren Manning
Holiday letters were a family institution growing up. We'd all take part- in the licking of envelopes if nothing less. A special box had place of honor on the table for keeping the cards and letters received, and really pretty cards might even become decorations later on. As the years go on, the number of letters in that box have dwindled. Some find holiday letters too time consuming, or too boring, or perhaps even think that Facebook and like are keeping us in touch well enough without the help of letters. I beg to differ.

Holiday Letters (or Family Letters, might also be a good name) tell the story of your years; they can help keep connections with family and friends strong, which is important as our society is more mobile and families more spread out than ever! They allow the writers of the letters (and their families) moments to recollect over the time that has passed- what lessons were learned, what challenges tackled, what laughter was shared? They also give the letter recipients insight into loved ones' lives and let's them know they are remembered and loved in turn.

Holiday letters can be tricky to write though! There are several approaches you can take to writing them, but each style does hold several things in common. Here are some general Dos and Don'ts of Holiday letter writing:

Don't stress about holiday letters! While traditionally, most families write holiday letters for the Christmas/Hanukkah season, that time can be very busy and stressful. But that doesn't mean you have to sacrifice these yearly communications. I have a friend who instead sends out a holiday letter around Valentines. Make when and to whom you send these letters to work for you. 
Do write about everyone in your household. Also make sure that each person (even children!) have a say over what is shared about them. You might think Jane's grades are worth sharing; she might prefer to tell about her scoring a goal in a soccer game. This also means each person is only sharing what they are comfortable with, so no accidental faux paus happen (How awkward would it be to mention Steve's great girlfriend when the couple may have just broken up?!) 
Don't be boastful. To be clear, this is especially important when talking about your children and your travels. Share the highlights (Bobby graduated from the University!), but you can skip some of the details (Bobby graduated with honors in X,Y, and Z). Say it humbly. 
letters, writing letters, holiday letters, christmas letters, how to write letters,
Photos by Lauren Manning
Do share details. This might seem like a contradiction to what I've just shared above, but it's not really. Keep in mind that those reading your letters might be more distant connections who only hear from you from time to time. Share the details that will keep clear who everyone is, and what they are doing (For example, "Johnny has been cheering for the Cowboys all season!" might not be as clear as "Our son Johnny graduated high school and this fall moved to Laramie to attend the University of Wyoming.")
Do keep an upbeat attitude, especially when starting this letter, and remember even small things can change the tone of a letter ("It is a joy as I sit down to write to you all, to be able to reflect on this past year" vs. " Wow! The year has flown by, it is just too busy!") 
Don't make your letter a medical report. Sometimes people do get sick, and sometimes there are deaths in the family. Definitely share these events if they are big parts of your year. However, keep it general. We don't need to hear how each test came back. Such details don't mean much to those unfamiliar with the terminology, they generally aren't very cheering to hear, and it is not all that respectful of the ill or deceased person's privacy. Even in these times, focus on what positive there is- the person's strength and the support you and your family received. 
Do try to at least sign your name, even if the rest of the letter isn't handwritten. Handwritten letters do lend a sense of personalization, but if you can't write all your letters, don't sweat it! People know holiday letters usually are sent to many people. 
Don't worry if you are focussing more on your family's news than inquiries about the reader. A holiday letter is a little like a newsletter- you are not generally expecting a reply; the goal is instead to inform. 
Three common approaches to letter writing are just sharing highlights, sharing lessons learned, and sharing humorous moments. When I say Holiday letters are like news letters, it really is true! You could share just a few highlights of each family member's year. A twist to this many people employ is to share highlights by sharing what lessons they learned from them (Judy joined a soccer team. Though she played well, we were even prouder of the perseverance it taught her and the hard work she put into the sport). This is also a good way to keep things humble and positive! Others might feel that an entire year is too much to focus on, and will instead share about one or two humorous incidents. This could be a humorous story from each member of the family or just one story with all contributing details and reactions. These can be a great fun to read and to write, but be careful to make sure everyone is comfortable with the details shared. No one likes being embarrassed!

So, Good Luck and Happy Holidays!

Love Noel Joy, letters, writing letters, holiday letters, christmas letters, how to write letters,
Photo by Lauren Manning
For more tips on writing holiday letters, take a peek at these articles:

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

What I Wore: Captured on Film


What I Wore: Sweater (Similar Here), Pants (59th St. via; Similar Here), Shoes (Old; Similar Here), Pearls (Vintage; Similar Here), Coat (Etsy; Similar Here)

This outfit was actually chosen for its ease and connivence, but once it was on, the utter Audrey-ness of it was inescapable. How Funny Face-d I was!  Without even thinking about it, the movies had once again influenced what I was wearing.

If you read Never Fully Dressed at all, you've probably already been long aware that I love films. I also really love to talk about films. I love people talking about films. Which is probably why I'm sitting here watching the fantastic documentary These Amazing Shadows: Movies That Make America. It is discussing the National Film Registry and how they pick films that are culturally, historically or aesthetically significant works for preservation in the Library of Congress. From Citizen Kane to Michael Jackson's Thriller (added in 1983 and 2009 respectively), looking at how and why these films have shaped us culturally, why they are worth considering as art is fascinating. Do we love To Kill a Mockingbird because of the father we want, the message it brings or the way it acted as a barometer for that time?

The emotions, the reactions of these people to the films- the ones they have just discovered through the nomination process, or those films that they saw that took them into the movie industry- is moving and gorgeous. The way they talk about the ideas behind these films (films that are pure entertainment versus ones that are that but also something more) makes you think. They all contain something for the viewer to experience, perhaps things that cannot be experienced any other way beyond watching them. And these are not just Hollywood films on the Registry. There is animation, shorts, newsreels, music videos, documentaries- even home videos.

What are films that are your favorites? That moved you or changed you?

P.S. Did you know you can nominate films for the National Film Registry?

Monday, November 18, 2013

Dogeared Page: The Velveteen Rabbit

The Skin Horse had lived longer in the nursery than any of the others. He was so old that his brown coat was bald in patches and showed the seams underneath, and most of the hairs in his tail had been pulled out to string bead necklaces. He was wise, for he had seen a long succession of mechanical toys arrive to boast and swagger, and by-and-by break their mainsprings and pass away, and he knew that they were only toys, and would never turn into anything else. For nursery magic is very strange and wonderful, and only those playthings that are old and wise and experienced like the Skin Horse understand all about it.

"What is REAL?" asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. "Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?"

"Real isn't how you are made," said the Skin Horse. "It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real."

"Does it hurt?" asked the Rabbit.

"Sometimes," said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. "When you are Real you don't mind being hurt."

"Does it happen all at once, like being wound up," he asked, "or bit by bit?"

"It doesn't happen all at once," said the Skin Horse. "You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand."

-The Velveteen Rabbit by Magery Williams

Friday, November 15, 2013

Film Flick: The Shop Around the Corner

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.  

"It's just a quiet little story, not a big picture. It has some charm,” the director told reporters when the film opened.  The Shop Around the Corner is indeed a quiet, little story and very charming for it- a far cry from the glamorous and uproarious films director Ernst Lubitsch was generally known for.

Set in Budapest, the film exudes an Old World milieu. Hard to imagine how it achieves this, since most of the action takes place within the bounds of one store which is populated by actors with American accents. And yet- perhaps it is the slight melancholia that tinges this sweet love story or the way everyday problems- money worries, living situations, even adultery and depression- are dealt with in such a practical manner. They are not there for fantastic plot twists (though many of these concerns do indeed propel the plot forward); they are there because such problems exist in life. The director grew up in a very similar store in Germany, which is perhaps what led him to share that, "Never did I make a picture in which the atmosphere and the characters were truer than in this picture.”

Likewise, the love story perhaps has a ring of truth to it because stars Margret Sullivan and Jimmy Stewart were the two main players in one of Hollywood's most famous real-life, platonic love stories. Close friends, Sullivan gave Stewart's career the jumpstart it needed by requesting him to be her co-star.  They would seem an odd mix, with him towering over her and both being so soft-spoken (Margret Sullivan was famous for her husky delivery). But somehow, it worked. Shop Around the Corner was then the third of four films the two did together, and the only one with a happy ending. In real life their ending was just as bittersweet- because it never got off the ground. Years later Stewart's wife, whom many felt bore a strong resemblance to Sullivan, would comment that both stars did love one another, but that Sullivan had been more interested in her career. Whether it was love or mere friendship, that quality is present on the screen.

Matuschek and Co. is  a small leather-goods shop that is just around the corner of a main thoroughfare in Budapest. It's days are enlivened by the store personnel who all work under their exacting employer Matuschek, played  Frank Morgan, better known as the Wizard in a certain MGM film. The store's most senior employee, Alfred Karlik (played by Jimmy Stewart), has been exchanging anonymous letters with a young woman and is, he believes, well on his way to being in love. Most days he is long suffering as  he attempts to soothe the increasingly short nerves of Matuschek. Meanwhile, a young woman named Klara (Margret Sullivan) manages to secure herself a a position at the store after selling an unsellable piece of merchandize. The two sale clerks are constantly at one another's throats, but are in fact each other's romantic pen-pals! This is Jimmy Stewart's story, with the action and emotional gravitas clearly centered on his clerk Karlik, but star-crossed lovers is not all the film has up its sleeve. Trouble is brewing in a different part of the shop too.

If this story line seems a touch familiar to you- well, that's because it should. The Shop Around the Corner was based on a play, Parfumarie, and was later  remade twice, as the Judy Garland vehicle In the Good Old Summer Time and the more recent, email-centric You've Got Mail.  With the story being retold so many times, one might fear the original film would be dated or less smooth than those that came after. But that is simply not true. The film feels fresh even decades after it's release, with moments of genuine humor and genuine pathos. You will find yourself wanting to perusing the shelves, talk to the clerks, and buy into the charm of  The Shop Around the Corner.


Thursday, November 14, 2013

What I Wore: Wait for the Right One

river, wyoming, red, skirt, pencil skirt, brag vintage, white sweater, november, blue, cherche scarf, scarf,
river, wyoming, red, skirt, pencil skirt, brag vintage, white sweater, november, blue, cherche scarf, scarf,
river, wyoming, red, skirt, pencil skirt, brag vintage, white sweater, november, blue, cherche scarf, scarf,
river, wyoming, red, skirt, pencil skirt, brag vintage, white sweater, november, blue, cherche scarf, scarf,

What I Wore: Sweater (via Stich Fix; Similar Here), Skirt (c/o Brag Vintage), Boots (Gift; Similar Here), Cheche Scarf (Paris; Similar Here), Necklace (Vintage; Similar Here)

If you've been around Never Fully Dressed for any amount of time, or  read any sort of style blog at all really, you'll probably notice a  lot of advice about to wear, and, sooner or later, also a lot about how people shop and how they dress themselves. Here's my own two cents: know what you want,  and what your wardrobe needs for you to be able to function in your life (of course, what every woman finds is a necessity for clothing might vary, but if you're unsure, I've posted about 20 Items Every Woman Needs.) Then, keep an eye out; shop often, but buy rarely as a friend of a friend would say. Don't buy unless the stars align and everything- color, feel, style- are all truly what you want. 

One such item I've been on the lookout for was a pencil skirt in red or houndstooth. Not as simple as it might sound, sadly. Every one I'd found was too stretchy (Was it Edith Head or Coco Chanel who first told us our dresses should be "tight enough to show you're a woman but loose enough to show you're a lady?") or too long, or both. Then Brag Vintage contacted me about working together. 

Perusing their site, I found a great red pencil skirt, which they kindly gave me. You can bet you'll be seeing this baby over and over.  Guys- this skirt fit perfectly, just skimming my form without, shall we say, allowing others to be too intimately acquainted with my curves. Admittedly, online shopping means fit can be a bit of a gamble, but unlike many online vintage sellers, this UK-based business does do returns! Plus, their prices were pretty incredible, even after factoring in the exchange rate from pounds to dollars. But what I liked most about this up and coming company was the selections themselves. They had a lot of other items I'd consider fall basics (including two sweater very like the one I paired this skirt with, a blazer, a vest and a houndstooth skirt!) The thing about buying vintage is sometimes it can be a gamble, but you know the clothing is quality to have lasted as long as it has. Oh, yeah. You will be seeing this skirt again and again this winter.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Unusual Mail Post (3rd Ed.)

  • Get romantic with Love Letters illustrated by the duo behind 40 Days of Dating
  • Mailift helps businesses bring back the handwritten note. Is it great to personalize or is outsourcing handwritten letters missing the point?

More Unusual Mail here and here

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

What I Wore: Horsing Around

equus-6 copy

What I Wore: Shirt (New York and Company), Sweater (borrowed from Jenn; Similar Here), jeans (GAP), Necklace (Popbasic; Similar Here), Shoes (Old Navy)

After spotting this sweater on Jenn of Jennifheish (see her posts here and here; so stylish!), the irony was not lost on me that this was a horse print being worn by a girl living in New York City. Can you get any more urban than that? And here I was, probably the most polar opposite you can get while still being in the United States; I live in Wyoming. I mean, the entire state is barely over 500,000 people. Instead, it is all about wide, open spaces, telling people to cowboy up*, and, you guessed it- horses. I wanted to get that sweater out here and give it a real Western Twist.

Ha. Ha. Ha.

While Jenn was kind enough to lend it out to me, I'd forgotten one BIG thing. Horses? Me? I've never even ridden a horse (well, if you don't count riding when too young to remember it). Besides that, I don't really do the fashionable cowgirl look either with its bejeweled everything, tight jeans and black cowboy hats. Or traditional Western with boleros, prairie skirts, and decorative fringes come to that.

What I do do though, is classic. So here's a slightly preppy look with a collared shirt and a few bright pops of color. Giddy-up, y'all!

*Along the sentiments of "when the going gets tough, the tough get going," it's another way of saying put on your big girl/boy pants and deal with it and/or don't whine about the pain and get to work. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

Q+A: How To Organize Your Closet

One thing I've noticed over and over as a truism when it comes to my closet- out of site out of mind. If I don't see it, it often remains (hidden beneath of clothes? Sitting in the laundry room? Wherever it was I last had,  suppose) less worn than items I see hanging in a closet. So I asked turned to some experts- style bloggers, that is!- and asked them what their tips and tricks were when it came to organizing a closet. Plus, we get a sneak peek at where the magic happens and they make those outfits you see on their blogs each day! Read on and don't forget to share your own tips in the comments below!


My closet has grown in leaps and bounds since deciding to blog about style. I've had to come up with some innovative ideas for keeping it contained. When you go into a storage solutions store keep your mind open. Think about other possible uses for the products in the store. I have used an over-the-door shoe organizer for my vast jewelry and scarf collection. This works brilliantly since I can see everything I own. 

Never throw away any of the storage solution pieces you buy. They will always work somewhere else in the house. I'm now using a the old jewelry storage solution for some of my scrapbooking brads in my home art studio. 

P.S. Suzanne has more information on closet organization here! 

Amy of A. Loos' Closet:

I know it's probably hard to believe, but even as a personal style blogger, my wardrobe is not very extensive. Growing up, we would pack up and/or pass down our summer clothes and stock our closets with winter-appropriate clothing and vice versa. Truth is, I haven't practiced that type of organization since childhood when my mother made me do it. This is partly due to the fact that I don't have enough clothes to do that; I've learned to be creative when styling spring/summer pieces for the cooler weather so I get to keep ALL my clothes in my closet!

Our bedroom gives my husband and I each a small, walk-in closet. I have three racks in my closet -- one long rack and two short racks. I use the long rack for my tops, and I organize them by type and sleeve length. My tanks and t-shirts are first, blouses next, then sweaters and cardigans, followed then by blazers and jackets. On my higher short rack, I have my bottoms organized by type and length. I hang my jeans and pants folded neatly over a shirt hanger, which begin my line of bottoms. After pants and jeans come my shorts, shortest length to longest, and then my skirts, shortest to longest. On my lower short rack, I have my dresses (a couple of rompers and overalls are in there, too) organized by sleeve length. It's just easier for me that way, just as organizing by color might be easier for another (I tried that, and I had a wretched time trying to figure out which color green went before that other color green, and I almost lost my head.)

I'm very weak when it comes to organization. I'm a messy person – even my art is messy. Over the years I've come to embrace that my type of creativity also comes with the inability to be neat. But I still try, and I do have a system for keeping my wardrobe in order – some of the time! I should start by explaining my space. My husband and I share a chest of drawers (three drawers each), I have a tiny end table with two small drawers for knits and accessories, and a shallow closet of my own that's 60 inches wide. There's also a wall where I can hang hats, and a small hat rack for draping scarves and more hats. On the bottom of my closet is a shoe rack. All of my clothes and accessories live here year 'round. I know a lot of folks store their winter clothes in summer and summer clothes in winter, but my clothes never move – including winter coats. This actually works out well for me. There's just enough space for everything, I more or less know where everything is. When I receive something new, something old or worn out usually goes. I've never been able to focus on many things at once, so I make sure my wardrobe has a limited number of clothes I love, rather than an unwieldy number of clothes I like. Keeping things simple is a system that works for me, but I believe everyone has to find their own way of wardrobe management.

Ashley's closet. 
Her daughter's clothes are below her own.
Since moving from a two bedroom apartment to a four bedroom house I've had the pleasure of organizing my clothes into two closets. I share the first one with my husband so I keep "less important" clothing like jackets, fancy tops, skirts, and the few pairs of pants I own. The second closet is twice the size so I obviously saved it for my true obsession: dresses. I love having them all together in clear view so I can choose my outfit with ease. I also put my everyday wear shoes on the floor below for the same reason. I still haven't decided if I'm going to keep it like this, but it's been working quite well so far!

If there's one thing most people would probably never guess about me, it's that I'm actually a really messy person. I try to do a good job of keeping my life in order, but when it comes to things like my living space or just eating in general, I'm a bit chaotic. That said, the one part of my room that actually has some organization to it (aside from my movie collection) is my closet. With so many clothes, I feel like I have to be particular about how they're stored in an effort to making getting dressed in the mornings a little easier. I have everything separated by style (dresses together, sleeveless tops together, sweaters together) and then by color. I live in a tiny dorm with an even tinier closet, so I use skirt hangers and and hanging closet organizer to make the most of my space. The only problem I have? Finding space for all of my shoes. It's a constant struggle.

P.S. Don't forget, if you would like to share your insight on a future Q+A post, give me a holler via comment, tweet, email, FB message or even the pony express. I'll get right on it! 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Cinema Style: Bonnie and Clyde

When Bonnie and Clyde (full review here) came out in 1967, no one had seen anything quite like it- that slapstick, glamour and violence all melded into one film like that. Critics and audiences alike were divided on what to think of it. What people were sure of though, was the clothes. As the films' writersd had put tit, Bonnie and Clyde " about style and people how have style. It is about people whose style set them apart from their time and place." Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty brought to life the thrilling tale of the two real-life bank robbers in clothes that started a fashion craze. The film's distinctive 1930s-as-filtered-through-the-1960s look has been elevated into a classic, timeless look that can easily be placed within a modern wardrobe.
Bonnie and Clyde 2

Skirt, Sweater, Beret, Clutch (Similar Here), Shoes

The above outfit is modeled after one of the film's- and indeed all of film history's- most iconic looks. A vintage, short-sleeved sweater is paired with a pencil skirt and topped by both a beret and scarf. As a result of the film, hemlines dropped back to mid-length skirts, and the sales of both berets and scarves shot up. In fact, Faye Dunaway even took to wearing the look in her everyday life too. She was even photographed as an example street style by a magazine- but the style by then was so pervasive no one quite recognized it was Bonnie herself they were snapping pictures of!

As Dunaway described it, these are " masculine looks in a feminine way."  There is a plethora of silks and tweeds with the earth tones that being very prevalent, so it's a look perfect for fall and winter. As such, our second Bonnie and Clyde inspired look has a slightly more professional look that the two bank robbers aspired towards once the money started coming in. A tweed blazer is paired with another long skirt and, as always, with a beret and scarf- this time in a wine color and feather print respectively. The slightly vintage vibe is finished with low-heeled shoes. As Dunaway described it,  
Bonnie and Clyde 1

Thursday, November 7, 2013

What I Wore: Beautiful, Open and True

plaid shirt, mustard yellow cardigan, grief, mountain, wool socks, never fully dress, withoutastyle, plaid shirt, mustard yellow cardigan, grief, mountain, wool socks, never fully dress, withoutastyle,
plaid shirt, mustard yellow cardigan, grief, mountain, wool socks, never fully dress, withoutastyle, plaid shirt, mustard yellow cardigan, grief, mountain, wool socks, never fully dress, withoutastyle, plaid shirt, mustard yellow cardigan, grief, mountain, wool socks, never fully dress, withoutastyle,

What I Wore: Shirt (Target; Similar Here), Camisole (Old Navy), Cardigan (H&M; Similar Here), Jeans (GAP), Socks (Similar Here), Shoes (Hand me down; Similar Here)

After sharing my plaid shirt remix, I'd been itching to try out a new way to wear the shirt. Surprisingly I'd never worn it open like one would a jacket. That became the basis of this look, with an added cardigan over it (stolen from The Boy's closet) for added warmth. In fact, I was so toasty in this, I went part of the day out of doors with no coat. That's saying something since we were in the mountains with snow on the ground! Makes for a nice blog post background doesn't it, all that snow? 

The real reason we were in the mountains was not snow though. This past month we haven't been going much of anywhere, except over one town and back to visit my grandmother in the hospital and try to help as we looked at moving her to a nursing home (she had been in an assisted living home, but wanted to see about moving somewhere with more care). Unfortunately, the only nursing home that was accepting new people was a bit of a drive, where my uncle lived, and on being discharged, she did make the trip. However, she passed away that next morning after arriving. 

Our family has lost someone very dear to us, and so many have lost a sweet friend; she always made friends easily. But as someone who has helped day in and day out to take care of her for the past few years, my feelings are so very mixed. It seems strange to think I won't ever walk into her home, see her resting on her couch, or that I'll never get to ask after her day,  or hear a family story from her again. Until marrying and moving, I literally visited every day for years (unless traveling of course), and even after, I was still seeing her several times a week. But that proximity also showed the true pain she was in, the hardness and frustration of what were once simple tasks. And she was someone who had lived with several lifelong diseases, so she was no wimp when it came to pain. My heart is heavy with grief- for my own loss and my family's- but I know with certainty that she is somewhere that is a true home and she is without pain. 

The last week I'd been helping to orchestrate funeral arrangements along with my parents, but Saturday no family had arrived yet and and all the phone calls were finally done with (at least until Monday). We had a day, an afternoon, to be somewhere else, to be somewhere beautiful, and open, and true. 
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