For a Story

Because it’s Saturday night and my work week is over.

Because the light in Florida was kickin’. 
{disclaimer: I have no idea what kickin’ means, but it sounds good}

Because hot pink and black are so very “Natalie.”
Because this outfit reminds me of a story. 
Which reminds me that we are all here, all living life, all trying to find stories.
Happy story-making weekend, friends. Enjoy!

A Week’s Worth

{pretty basics} 

{classy-like}
{making fresh lemonade}

{way toooooo hot out for my liking + retro vibe} 

{flannel + mocs}
It’s a rainy night and the only words I have for you are these:
It will be alright. 
In fact, it will be brilliantly beautiful. 
Just hang in there. 
Keep smiling. 
Live in the NOW. 
It’s coming. 
{whatever it is…but your heart knows, right?}
And when it comes?
It’s going to be glorious-like-woah.
Miracle-big-time.
Bigger-than-I-ever-dreamed-amazing.
I’m talking God-moves-mountains sorta huge, and 
heart-exploding-inside-my-chest kinda awesome. 
So hang in there.
It will be alright. 
It will be God-makes-things-so-much-more-than-alright-crazy-good.

Meet Blowfish Shoes

New favorite shoes alert. But first: a story.
I once had a pair of white and cork heels that I got compliments on every.single.time I wore them. And wear them, I did, until they were completely unwearable, unrepairable, and I tearily said goodbye to them (is tearily not a word?).
Sad story, right?
Nope.
Becaaaaaauuuuussseeeee…look what I found!
I know this will be my new compliments-all-the-time can’t-stop-wearing-em shoe. The Illi Wedge in Faux Straw is just seriously amazingly beautiful, comfortable, and best of all: affordable from Blowfish Shoes.
A perfect wedge, just like the kind Duchess Kate likes to wear. 
The perfect summer shoe, to go with any summer dress. 
The cutest little almond toe shape with a little toe-box pleat.
A really soft interior that’s an amazing shade of blue.
And a real rubber sole to keep me from slipping during summer adventures.
Seriously, I’m in love.

I hope you all know I only ever talk about things I really am crazy about. And these shoes? Crazy about ’em.
Also lovin’ on this beautiful linen Tibi dress, but that’s playing second fiddle to these straw shoes.
{I also just like to say my straw shoes. Giggle.}

Blowfish Shoes has got it down. Great shoes, great customer service, great attention to detail. 

Not to mention…they’re generous too! Giveaway time tomorrow, friends! Stay tuned 😉

Sunnies: local store//Earrings: local store//Bangles: F21 & J.Crew//Dress: Thrifted//Heels: c/o Blowfish Shoes

Sound of Music

Oh my heart is singing a song lately! It’s Springtime and the lilacs are blooming and I love these new shoes and Jesus is just filling my heart to overflowing. 

I’ve travelled a lot lately, and caught up with some dear friends I haven’t seen in years, and I’ve gotten lots of little girl hugs & smiles (I just ADORE my friends’ kids!).

I’m so excited to see what else is on the horizon for the summer. It’s going to be a good one, don’t you think?

Waves & Being Mermaids

This skirt reminds me of waves because of the turquoise swirls and the tiered scalloped edges, topped with a “whitecap” of the white ruffled shirt.

I spent yesterday at the beach with my friends (read my post on how to pack your beach bag here) and really experienced the waves with a heart for the metaphor found in them. Thanks, in no small part, to this song, which has been soaking deeply into my heart this week. 

I’m not sure I can describe it. Not yet, anyway, this experience of ebbing and flowing with the waves, of the physicality involved in trying to avoid the waves, the fear that can so easily overcome us when facing waves. I was struggling to keep my back to them, to close my eyes and mouth and grin and bear it…and then I looked to my side and I saw a beautiful friend, embracing the waves like a mermaid, swimming through them with a purely joyous smile on her face. She was at home in the waves, while I was in survival mode. 
God tells us there will be waves. I repeat: There will be waves. 
We can choose to embrace the waves and realize that they are part of our story, part of our refining, and that God’s hand is always on us. He’s got us. We won’t get lost. When we swim under a wave, let us find the beauty in those waters until we surface again. And when we surface, we’ll take a big gulp of fresh air and feel stronger than we ever did before. Stronger, more full of the beauty of life, and more free. 
Let’s be mermaids, darlings.
Sunnies: GoFish Clothing//Shirt: J.Crew//Skirt: Thrifted//Sandals:F21

Sixties Sunday

I love Sundays for so many reasons. I mean, hello, I get to celebrate Jesus, have a day off, worship with my friends, go out for brunch…and obviously, pull out my favorite vintage dresses.

I had half a mind to chop this late-1960s dress right above my knee (thinking it looked a bit, “I grabbed the shower curtain and made it into a dress” when left long). The next day, I walked by Lilly Pulitzer and saw this dress in the window. Sold! (well not the Lilly dress! but the idea of keeping it long). 

I wore this fun dress to church and to brunch with some friends. We sat outside under a big straw umbrella and chit-chatted about life while eating banana pancakes and drinking orange juice out of wine glasses. Just the way a Sunday should be. 

Into the week, my friends!
PS> Have you entered my Minted.com giveaway yet? There is still time!

Wearing Skirts & Tights in Winter {Updated Version}

{heavy materials, layers underneath, tights, flannel heels}
Layer your dress: A heavy-duty red material, layered with a chambray shirt makes sure this ensemble stays cozy. 
{Merino cardigan, heavy dress, merino tights, Hunter boots}
Layer with Merino Wool: Layer over it with a merino wool sweater and merino wool tights. 
{Velvet skirt, layered top, Bootights, Shearling-lined boots}
Discover Bootights: LOVE these tights with a sock attached. They are made in USA, high-quality, durable, and have a sock attached. 
Find fleece, silk, or cotton tights and leggings: {wool tulip skirt, fleece-lined running tights, high boots, chambray shirt}
Choose Appropriate Dress Materials: Heavy vintage silk, velvet, and wool are all great choices. If you are wearing a lighter-weight dress, be sure the colors say “winter.”
Add lots of layers and color!

You can even do fancy in the winter without being freezing! These tights are a great find (Target, of course!) and pair perfectly with a heavy silk vintage dress ($10 from the ‘needs work’ bin at my favorite vintage store…and I’m happy to work on pretty vintage dresses!). Then I wore my bright red wool coat.

{Dress, merino wool sweater, sweater tights, suede pumps}
I hope this gives you some ideas as we face these last dregs of winter! 
Be well and be warm!

Fun or Frumpy?

I’ve noticed a new trend: over-the-knee pencil skirts, or midi pencil skirts. To be honest, I’m not sure how I feel about them, especially considering I just sold a 90s wool version to the consignment store.
Should I have kept it?
Does this conservative look say cute & vintage, or dated & age-ing?
What do you think?
Fun or Frumpy?

Well Then…

It’s the middle of January. It’s -7 degrees today, actual temperature.
I need some sunshine.
Sunshine in the form of a summer dress?
Why not?
Just layer it up!
So long as the background or floral colors are deep enough to coordinate with some darker winter layers, a summer dress can be a cheerful addition to a winter wardrobe. 
(Gray 3/4 sleeve tee & thermal shorts under dress)

At least, I think so.
When I was trying on a few clothes at the thrift store, another woman looked at me and said, “You look like you’re dressed for the wrong season. Don’t you have any winter-appropriate clothes?” I think she was genuinely concerned for me, bless her heart. I wasn’t quite sure how to respond, considering I had dressed this way on purpose. Oops.

So now that you’ve seen my attempt at this outfit, you can see what thoroughly inspired it, this gorgeous photo from one of my new favorite bloggers:
She’s so chic
I think I look like a middle-schooler trying to look like the cool high-schooler…
Actually, that analogy kind of sums up my whole life, haha.
Happy Monday!
PS. Sharing a bit of my heart about Faith-Based Fashion on Rubi’s blog! Check it out 🙂
PPS. If you have cabin fever, too, check out Modcloth’s mad sale:
And doesn’t that red dress look SO SIMILAR to mine?

Birthday {Part I}

Hi 🙂 
It was my birthday 🙂
I received the most luscious bouquet of hot pink and light pink roses 🙂
My family and friends really went all out to make sure it was a special day…sending flowers, gifts from afar, cards, and bringing pink champagne and presents. They really indulged me, and are ever-so-good to me. Thank you, dears, for making my day so special 🙂

My brother calls this my Neopolitan Ice Cream skirt. I call it my Birthday Tutu! I’ve worn it for my birthday before (see this old-as-the-hills post). It’s just so perfectly pinkly party-y! I wore it with my grandmother’s crinoline underneath. Can you believe she used to wear it under her poodle skirts in the 50s?! I love it so much it’s not even funny.

The feather headpiece was a birthday gift a few years ago from one of my very best friends. I love it so much and have worn it on many birthdays because it is just so birthday-y! I wore some vintage costume jewelry earrings, and my polka-dot tights too.
A birthday only comes once a year, so it definitely requires some party clothes! Don’t you agree? 
Check out PART TWO here, including my green-ombre cake with pink frosting!