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7 Tips To Style Denim For Fall

Sweater: c/o Influenster+Kohls | Jeans: c/o Influenster+Kohls | Shoes: Thrifted

Sweater: c/o Influenster+Kohls | Jeans: c/o Influenster+Kohls | Boots: Target


I don't know about you but I tend to wear the most denim in the fall. Maybe it is the cooler temperatures that make me reach for my favorite pair of jeans or the fact that they are the perfect piece to style with a cozy sweater:) While I am often known as a "dress" and "skirt" girl I can't help loving a classic pair of jeans, especially after checking out all the fall styles Kohl's has this year!
When I was growing up I used to shop at Kohl's all the time with my grandmother! It has been years since I have shopped there for seasonal pieces and I am soooo glad that I decided to see what they had for this fall!
Not only did I find two styles of jeans that I LOVE, but I also got to try out two new brands that I have never actually worn before. I have to say that this wide leg denim style from the Jennifer Lopez collection are my new favorite piece! They are the comfiest pair of denim ever (perfect for dancing and teaching) and I love the style, plus they are high waisted:)
As for the second style, it is definitely more modern, but I love the cut, wash, and distressed fray hem! I have always loved Levi denim as a brand, but never actually owned a pair, so I am happy to say they live up to the hype!

However, when it comes to wearing denim I truly believe it is all about how you style it....sometimes it is all about creating an allusion that makes an ensemble perfect and something you love and feel confident in!
So keep reading for some of my denim styling tips:
  1. Play With Shapes: As someone who not only loves fashion but teaches design classes, I am often focused on paying attention to elements of design and pairing things that offset each other in a cohesive way. My best advise is to wear a different shape on the top compared to the bottom. For example, when wearing wide leg denim I either pair a fitted top with it or a top that has a wider collar or sleeves (like an inverted triangle). I like to create hourglass shapes or elongated triangles with wide leg jeans and long inverted triangles with skinny jeans. 
  2. Chunky Sweaters: I am a huge fan of chunky sweaters! When it comes to wearing them I don't mind pairing them with wide leg jeans, but this can sometimes drown you. Thus, my favorite way to style a chunky or over sized sweater is to pair it with skinny jeans. This balances the focus between the legs and the torso and doesn't accentuate so much of your upper body. (so often people pair fitted tops with skinny jeans which often seems unflattering because it is all the same shape). 
  3. Tuck The Waist: I have always liked the idea of tucking in the front hem of tops and sweaters into the waist of skirts and pants, but after following Rachel Martino I have grown to love it even more! This works well with chunky sweaters or loose tops because it recreates shape and a focal point. Often times we wear over sized tops with jeans and leave them be (which sometimes works), but this tends to overwhelm our shape, thus tucking in the front hem of a top or sweater into the front of jeans creates a focal point at your waist and gives you a flattering shape. 
  4. Dark Wash First: I have always liked skinny jeans, but haven't always felt comfortable wearing them. However, when I started wearing dark wash jeans I realized they seem less revealing than light wash, thus I started becoming more comfortable in them. If you are like me, I would suggest trying out dark wash skinny jeans before you wear light wash....it makes a world of difference. 
  5. Longer Hems When wearing skinny jeans (or really any jeans) you can sometimes be uncomfortable with how tight they are at the back. My trick for this is to style them with tops that have longer hems. This doesn't mean they have to be tunic tops, but tops with longer back hems or sweaters that are longer. Then tuck the front in! This gives a focal point for the front of your look and coverage in the back. 
  6. High Waist Is Your Best Friend: If you haven't tried High Waisted jeans you are missing out! They might have used to carry a stereotype of being "mom jeans" but they are so instyle now and are not only comfortable but flattering! High waisted jeans fit at your natural waist and actually give you shape, plus smoothing out any unflattering lines. 
  7. Style Up or Down: Don't let yourself get stuck in a box that jeans are only casual. Play around with styling them up or down. The best way to do this is changing your shoes to heels or a statement shoe, but you can also do this with accessories. 

Are you a denim Fan?

- Madison 

**This post is in collaboration with Influenster & Kohls, all opinions are my own**

Little Women

Skirt: Thrifted (vintage) | Shirt: Thrifted | Bow: Thrifted | Shoes: Forever 21 
Purse: Thrifted (Coach) | Earrings: Forever 21

I don't know what it is but there has always been something about Little Women that has always drawn me in! Maybe it was because I grew up knowing the story, or that I watched the movies (all versions) regularly, or that I would always played "Little Women" with my two friends (who were sisters) growing up. Somehow we decided that every time we got together we either had to play Little Women or watch it (the 1994 version).
At some point when I was younger I finally read the book and then read "Little Men" and "Jo's Boys". I always loved the story of Little Women because it is one that I could relate to and be inspired by. I even managed to visit Louisa May Alcott’s house in Concord Massachusetts when my family and I visited Boston the Summer after I graduated High School.
I recently heard someone say that "Little Women is a story about nothing, but  about everything" and I couldn't agree more! Because when you look at it, it really is only a story about a family, but yet it is about love, loss, forgiveness, dreams, family and so much more!
Earlier this year PBS came out with a Little Women mini series that I absolutely fell in love with (I've seen it multiple times and could easily watch it again). Then this weekend a new modern adaption movie of Little Women came out and it was soooo good! It reminded me once again how much I love the classic story and why, and since it was a modern retelling it truly did show how the story applies to our modern day just as much as it did to the days when Louisa May Alcott wrote her famous book!

I think that Little Women will always be one of those stories (and books) that holds a special place in my heart because of all the lessons it teaching and the heartfelt inspiration it brings to life!

For this look I can't help but say I was a bit inspired by Little Women, especially because of this vintage skirt and the buttons on the side....it's very 1800's meets 2018:)
Are you a fan of Little Women?

-Madison

The Perfect Wrap Dress

Dress: c/o eShakti (similar)| Shoes: Wallmart | Headband: H&M 

Being a teacher I find that my style has expanded a bit these last few weeks, if anything it has definitely become more diverse in the styles that I wear on a daily basis. Before teaching I did love to put together fun and creative outfits for daily events, but not that I am in a field where comfort and professionalism are at the forefront in what I choose to wear, I find that I often reach for simple staple pieces to get me through the week. 
eShakti has always been one of my FAVORITE brands and through the years I have had the immense pleasure of working with them on a number of occasions. I always look forward to seeing the new styles they come out with or tweaking a style to fit my needs (because all of their dresses and various pieces are customizable) and this dress above is no exception. Over the years I have discovered that I quiet like wrap dresses! I sadly don't own very many, but the few that I do own are some of my favorite pieces because they are easy to wear, very comfortable, and quite versatile. 
When I stumbled upon this striped dress while browsing the selection on eShakti I was drawn to the classic wrap silhouette and the fun colorful stripes. I decided that it was the perfect dress to add to my collection and it has quickly become a new favorite! I can't tell you how comfortable wearing a wrap dress is, and with my somewhat high energy job it is the perfect dress for teaching:) 
I especially love the pop of color in the stripes, and like that they are actually a bit more muted colors which makes them the perfect colorful addition to my fall wardrobe. 
I decided to go "comfy" with this ensemble and paired it with my new favorite shoes, these slip on black loafers. I am all about the YELLOW right now and this gorgeous yellow headband that I picked up at h&m has been the perfect accessory to many of my latest looks, including this one (not to mention it reminds me of Noelle Downing and Steffy every time I wear it). 

Are you a fan of wrap dresses?

-Madison

Thoughts On My First Week of Teaching

Dress: Thrifted (Vintage) | Shoes: Thrifted | Purse: c/o Gamiss | Earrings: Target

Well, I survived my first week of school as a teacher!!! To be honest I don't think it really hit me till Tuesday, then Wednesday I hit a wall of tiredness and Friday was officially the shortest day ever! Needless to say, my first week in the classroom as a teacher was nothing like I expected it to be and everything I hoped it would be:)

For two weeks I had been counting down the days till the first day of school when I would finally get to meet my students, and the Thursday before the first day (when I got my class rosters) it all started to get a little more real because I could put names to my classes. 

The first day seemed like a whirlwind! All my class periods went by so fast and it was all I could do to take in all the many faces, names, personalities, and abilities that walked through my door. After Monday I got into more of a routine as I got used to the daily schedule and slowly got to know each class better and each student more specifically. 

Within our school district we are always encouraged to take the first week to build relationships, so my first week of teaching was spent getting to know my students, doing icebreakers, practicing teamwork, and getting to know different aspects of my students and each one of my classes. 

What I learned and realized:

I've always heard teachers say that when you start teaching you will be the tiredest you have ever been, and apart from many other things, I can definitely agree that is true! While I might wake up at 4:45 am every morning its not necessarily the early mornings that get me (I have become more of a morning person), but rather the busy schedule and 24/7 energy! My personality and personality weaknesses as an Introvert have definitely been challenged since starting my job and I think it is more so my "Introverted" personality that causes me to feel EXHAUSTED when I get home every day....it's not that I am necessarily tired, but more so that I feel drained (which is understandable considering the environment that I work in). But I've heard it gets better so here's to pressing forward! 

I've never drank this much coffee every day (well except for when I was student teaching). I now have two cups of coffee before 7:20 am every morning and some days make another cup around 10:00 am with the Keurig I have in my classroom:)

I don't think I have ever talked this much in my life!!! I went from talking maybe 2 hours total a day to talking close to 6 hours every day... that has been something to get used to. I don't mind talking in front of my classes, in fact I become a completely different person when placed in a teaching role (very animated and loud) and I haven't actually felt myself start to shrink into my "Introvert Shell" while teaching (now when I am with other co-workers that can be a different story). 

Building relationships with your students is soooo important! While I have definitely only skimmed the surface of each of my students personalities, I can see, going into the second week, just how vital everything I did the first week was in creating the class atmospheres that exist currently. I also love that I had my students create their own class values, because they have actually started to keep each other accountable to behaving well in class, so I am curious to see how that continues to go:) 

High Schoolers are awesome, crazy, & at times a mystery but I love the variety of personalities I have in my class every day and the variety of students ranging from athletes, band members, color guard, student council and more! 

I can without a doubt say that my first week of teaching was probably one of the most CHALLENGING things I have done in my life (even more than my RA job in college), probably because it's just me & my students and I am in charge and the go to person.  However, despite all of the craziness and at times overwhelming "to do" list it has been amazing! At times it still seems like a dream and at other times it seems like I am simply doing what I was always meant to do, but whatever my daily feeling I can't wait to see what else this adventure has in store!

Outfit Details: 
So this isn't an outfit that I taught in, but a fun summer outfit a wore a few weeks back. I picked up this dress at the thrift store because it reminded me of Jessica Day from New Girl, which considering she is a teacher, and at times an unconventional one at that I can't help but look to her for "teacher style" inspiration:) 

- Madison