Back in Black (& Gray)

black and gray, silver bag, studded flats black and gray, silver bag, studded flats black and gray, silver bag, studded flats black and gray, silver bag, studded flats

The backs of knees have to be one of the weirdest looking parts of the human body, don’t you think? OK, now stop looking at mine, creeper.

black and gray, silver bag, studded flats black and gray, silver bag, studded flats

If you’ve been reading this blog for more than a day, you know I’m not one to wear head-to-toe black. We’re just not NYC-chic here in the Heartland. But being one of the chicest people in Indiana (it doesn’t take much), I decided I should try head-to-toe black and gray. It was the closest thing to all black I could handle. It was only Tuesday, after all.

similar Skirt (under $20) // similar Bag (on sale) // similar Shoes // Ring* // similar Sunglasses // Lips  “Please Me”

*Ring purchased with gift card provided courtesy of Shopbop.

5 Ways to Wear a Flared Skirt

This navy skirt was a total clearance rack impulse buy, but it was $10 well spent. I’ve worn it so many times already, and there’s no end in sight. The above-the-knee length is perfect, as is the waist band and cute flared shape. Every girl who knows what’s good for her needs one of these babies.

So let’s get this party started. Here are 5 ways I’ve styled this flared skirt:

1.  For evening

I believe this was actually the skirt’s debut! I wore it with a silky top, a statement necklace, and bright heels to see a Broadway show this summer.


2.  With a belt

Since the skirt is solid, this patterned belt added some pizzazz. Well, maybe pizzaz is a strong word, but it added something. I’m sure of that.


3.  Disguised as a dress

I paired my navy skirt with a navy shirt to look like a dress. It’s only as I write this that I remember I already have a long-sleeved navy flared dress. So this was kind of pointless. But at the time, I was in wisdom tooth extraction recovery and was on some drugs, so I’ll blame that.


4.  For fall

This was the most recent permutation of my ever so versatile skirt. With a sweater and boots, I was ready for some cooler weather. (I’m thinking some bright tights would be another cold-weather addition. Stay tuned!)


5.  On vacation

Florida seemed like a good setting to try a knotted gingham button-up and orange flats with my skirt.


In case you’d like to add a flared skirt to your wardrobe, here are some I picked out just for you!

Flared Skirts

1.  Kirna Zabete for Target, $27.98  //  2.  Dorothy Perkins, $59

3.  ModCloth, $47.99  //  4.  Miss Selfridge, $50.00 (comes in other colors too)

5.  ModCloth, $32.99  //  6.  Topshop, $76

Sporty Spice


While we’re in Florida this week, we’re staying with Kristin’s grandparents in The Villages, the biggest retirement community in the universe. Since retired people have all the time in the world to do whatever they want, they are very into low-impact sports. Yesterday we played pickle ball. It’s kind of like tennis but with a smaller court and wiffle balls. I am utterly inept at anything that could remotely be considered a sport, but I gave it a try. I’m told I only did it for 20 minute, but it felt like 2 hours. I did hit it over the net a couple times, although I prefer a more avant-garde approach where I alternate (1) hitting the ball sideways into the benches and (2) running away.

Anyway, once I finished “playing,” I could put my cute shoes back on. Here’s some more outfit photos…Look forward to photos tomorrow from my first trip to Disney World!





Shirt: J. Crew

Skirt: Webster at Target

Shoes: Unrestricted (similar here and here)

Watch: Anne Klein (similar)

Bracelet: Madewell

Sneakers: Coach

Knot It





20120824-193350.jpgRecently I’ve seen a couple different versions of a chambray top knotted at the waist and worn with a maxi skirt. It looked really cute and I already had the necessary ingredients, so I wanted to give it a shot. I put the outfit together but at the last minute I decided it was just too covered up for August, so I switched my maxi out for a shorter skirt. And there you have it.

Sorry, were you hoping for a funny story like yesterday? I only have so many jokes. I have to use them sparingly. OK, that’s totally not true. If it were feasible for every sentence I uttered (or typed) to be sarcastic, I would totally do it. But then I would have no friends. And then I would have no one to tell me how cute this outfit is (right? guys? Bueller?)

Top from Madewell

By the way, if are a Bloglovin’ user, I would love to get some Bloglovin’ lovin’. Just click here or the button at the bottom of the page to follow. Merci. Gracias. (That was me trying to include my international readers. I hope everyone can read English because that’s pretty much all I got.)

On a Whim






As you know, friends, I am a bit of a planner when it comes to deciding what to wear. Normally I plan my outfits the night before so I have plenty of time and I’m not rushed in the morning. Plus my brain doesn’t function at its full capacity until about 2pm.

I had an outfit planned for this particular day, but I felt crummy in the morning and wasn’t too psyched about wearing the rather snug-fitting pants and heels I had selected. So my options were: wear the uncomfortable pre-planned outfit, or – gasp! – think up something new on the spot!

Maybe the heartburn lowered my inhibitions, but I decided to go for it! I started with this skirt because it’s my go-to piece when I’m not feeling well. The fabric is really stretchy without being tight. I basically can’t feel it. I grabbed this sweater to add some color. Then I realized that I’ve never worn this skirt with a belt. Boom. Done. And the shoes…I wore these because (a) I happened to look at them, and (b) I have feet.

Oh, and may I call your attention to my newest spotted manicure?  If you haven’t already tried this, you can read my tutorial here. For this version, I used a nude color for the base coat, then did spots in a Sally Hansen white and Essie Mint Candy Apple. The only problem is that my nails kind of look like candy so I have to remember not to eat my fingers. I’ve been successful so far.

Risky Business





20120731-203835.jpgSome people climb Mount Everest. Some people gamble their life savings. Some people eat that poisonous puffer fish thing. When I want to feel that rush that only comes from taking a big risk…I order something online – that’s on FINAL. SALE.

Whoa. Take a breather. I know; it’s pretty crazy. It was just a belt this time, but next time, who knows? Maybe I’ll order PANTS on final sale. Just kidding…that’s insane.

Well, I got super lucky with this final sale belt, because I love it even more in person than I did online, and it fits perfectly. Since I wore it over this kind of thick-waisted skirt, it was actually a liiiiittle snug, so I’m not sure if I will wear them together again. But it sure did look cute while it lasted.

Are you entertained by my hilarious musings and adorable outfits (and my modesty)? Please leave me some love in the comments, and follow Sarah’s Real Life on Bloglovin’ or by entering your email below.


Over-Thinking It






20120719-184757.jpgI bought this skirt because I liked how the fabric said “I’m casual” but the structure said “I’m a lil fancy.” The problem? Is the skirt too casual for work (it’s not jeans but it is denim)? and is it too fancy for the weekend? I’ve mostly worn it for those in-between occasions like day-time parties, but on Thursday I wore it to work. Here’s how I rationalized it: the button-up shirt is so quintessentially “workwear” and the pearls and low bun tend to read conservative, so that all cancels out any suspicion someone might have that I just thought it was Friday (although that’s something I would do). The best part? My coworker wore actual jeans this same day. Man, I really over-think things sometimes.

Remember the last time I wore this skirt? It was another workday look.

Belt available at J. Crew

I’m Baaaack (with a new Accessory)






Greetings, dear readers! I come to you bearing good news. Although my face is still a bit oddly shaped and I have not yet advanced to the chewing stage, I am feeling a little better. I didn’t go to work, but I did venture out to lunch with friends. And by lunch I mean frozen yogurt, but the details aren’t important.

In other good news, this bubble necklace that I ordered on eBay a couple weeks ago finally came in the mail, so I decided to feature it in my “lunch” outfit. I don’t usually do the monochromatic thing, but for some reason I was inspired to try it. The lime green looked so nice against my navy top, that I just went all out and wore a navy skirt and navy shoes, too. Why the hell not?

I like how this little ensemble turned out, but of course I’m already thinking of other ways to style this necklace. Here’s a peek into my outfit-schemeing mind:

Against a Contrasting Red Dress…


Fancying up Chambray…


Adding Even More Color to a Bright Print…


Which option is your favorite? I need help deciding how to wear it next…

Bubble Necklace available in various colors at J. Crew or other less legit sources

Shoes are Sperry Top-Sider Authentic Original 2-Eye Boat Shoes

Maxed Out





Right now I am living vicariously through these photos of myself from last Thursday. Look at that unpuffy face that can actually make expressions besides ones of sadness and pain! And, more importantly, look at me all bathed and wearing real clothes. Ah, those were the days. I don’t know how much longer I’ll be stuck on the couch recovering from my wisdom tooth extraction, but you better believe that my first day back in the world will involve a celebratory outfit.

In the meantime, I’ll just try to fool myself into thinking I’m on “vacation.”

Exclamation Point





One time I heard someone say that your outfit is like a sentence and your shoes are the punctuation (if you were the one who said it, please contact me and I will add a footnote with proper attribution). Well, these shoes are an exclamation point. I’ve had these shoes for a couple years and I don’t wear them that often, but once in a while when I feel like giving a simple outfit a funky edge, I bust out these babies.

They make quite a statement…exclamation point!

Necklace is Givenchy, available at Nordstrom

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