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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

Little Red Boots

Dress: c/o ThredUp | Scarf: Vintage | Boots: Joules | Purse: Vintage Coach



I've always loved the idea of red boots (also worn here, here, and here) and right before I went to New York in January I finally got a pair. Granted, I don't wear them all that often (NY was the one time I wore them a LOT) but I do love how they add such a fun pop of color to a look...plus they always remind me of all of my favorite classy/preppy East Coast & Southern bloggers and I can't help not loving them.
I received this dress from ThredUp recently, as I shared about my collaboration with them in a recent post and I have to say that I am absolutely OBSESSED with this dress! It is a Banana Republic dress and it is the classiest thing I have ever had...from the timeless shirtwaist design, to the light blue cotton fabric, all the way to the dainty scallped sleeves and hem what isn't to love! As soon as I saw the dress I knew that it was one of the items I wanted to get from ThredUp, and I love that I got it for such a great price (because on a regular day I don't shop at Banana Republic). This dress reminds me of so many things...it reminds me of The Astronaut Wives Club, Julia Hengel from Gal Meets Glam (just add pink and your set), and Sarah Vickers from Classy Girls Wear Pearls.

Because this dress reminded me of so many style inspirations I decided to go for classy prep as it was a rainy day and I decided my red boots would pair perfectly. With that I wanted to add another pop of color so I pulled out this vintage paisley scarf and I quite like how the whole look turned out.
I have decided that since this dress is such a classic staple I am going to bring it back a few other times throughout the coming months, styling it different ways:)

- Madison

Staying Cool & Cute in Summer Humidity

Top: Made | Shorts: Thrifted DIY | Sandals: Marshalls | Purse: Thrifted 
Earrings: Five Below | Sunglasses: Urban Outfitters
Here in Texas we are in full swing of the 100 degree days....though with the humidity here it often feels ten degrees hotter than it really is. Thankfully I am not all to affected by heat as some people, sure I will feel hot and sweat, but I will never feel unbearable (thankfully). Nevertheless, with the sweltering heat that us Texans struggle with I have learned over the years what works and what doesn't work to wear outside and be the most comfortable and cool!
With that here is a list of my tips and tricks for staying cool and cute in the summer:

  1. Less Layers - I am one of those people who always wears and tank top under most shirts and a slip or shorts (or both) under many dresses and skirts. However, in the summer this isn't possible. I have started grabbing pieces from my closet that don't require me to wear a tanktop underneath or a slip under a skirt. The less layers laying against your body makes you so much cooler!
  2. Pay Attention To Your Fabrics - As a slight "textile nerd" (thanks to that textile class I took in college) I have always paid attention to my fabrics in the summer. Many synthetic fabrics that our clothes can be made of are not breathable and make us quite hot. Thus, choosing more natural fibers is your best bet. I often reach for cotton pieces or cotton blends because they are very breathable in the heat. I especially LOVE wearing Rayon (which is actually synthetic) in the summer because it absorbs more liquid than cotton and tends to stay cool in humid weather. I actually wore a cotton skirt and rayon top when we were in Alabama (in this post here) and was outside for 3 straight hours and felt perfectly comfortable.  
  3. Loose Fit - Loose fabrics and styles of clothes are so much cooler than fitted pieces! I have a ton of dresses that I love to wear in the summer but many of them have fitted bodices and often can be quite hot. However, when I wear loose dresses or tops, like the top above in this post (which is also cotton) I am always very comfortable and cool. 
  4. Sleeveless - I am not one to wear spaghetti strap tops, but I don't mind straps that are two inches or more and often make many of my summer dresses without sleeves. Sleeves are restrictive in the heat, thus removing them not only makes your feel more comfortable and mobile, but also lets your arms breath. 
  5. Light Colors - Don't wear black or dark colors! I like to wear neutral colors in the summer sometimes, but I have found that when I wear darker colors they absorb more heat and thus make me feel hot. I often times wear white shirts and blouses frequently in the summer because white reflects more light and keeps me cool. After all, summer in the perfect time to wear your bright and light colors so why not take advantage of it. 
  6. It's Okay To Wear Shorts - I am the person who would avoid shorts at most costs because I don't always think they fit my style very well, unlike skirts that encompass who I am. However, when I know that the day will be hot and I will be outside for a good amount of time I give in and pull out my shorts (that I always DIY from thrifted jeans). Now mind you, I don't pull out "short shorts"..... the length won't affect your coolness much so no need sacrificing modestly for comfort. 
  7. Hair Up - I hate wearing my hair up....like I really hate it (I don't like how it looks). At home I wear my hair up only because I am always in "comfy clothes" but when I go out I always like to wear my hair down or half up. However, with my hair now growing out it can be quite hot wearing it down in the summer time. Thus, I sometimes give in and put my hair up in a pony tail, braids, or my new favorite bubble braid. Having your hair off your neck truly makes all the difference. 
  8. Open Toed Shoes - You know in the summer when you have to sleep with your feet peaking out of your comforter so that you can be cooler to sleep? The same idea/theory goes into play when going out in the heat, letting your feet breath in sandals or open toes shoes keeps you cool. When we cover our feet it warms our body (like putting on socks in the winter), thus keeping them open to the air is our bodies air conditioning in the summer (kind of).
Do you utilize any of these cool strategies in the summer?
What summer dressing strategies work to keep you cool?

-Madison 



Why I Love To Thrift

Skirt: c/o ThredUp | Top: Thrifted | Shoes: Thrifted | Bag: Thrifted (Vintage) 
Earrings: Five Below | Sunglasses: c/o Sunglasswarehouse  

If I were to do the math I would say that at this point 95% of my closet is thrifted.......and its a good sized closet (like 1/3 of my room). Thrifting has always been something that I loved to do and I think it started when I was in middle school. When I was younger I was really into fashion, I liked following the trends, seeing what was in the stores, sketching outfits on any paper I could find, and trying to copy the trends for myself. However, I never could swing buying the latest trends so I started thrifting. I loved that I could buy a whole outfit for $20 at the thrift store when $20 would barely get me a dress at the store....$20 used to seem like $50 to my younger self and my love for thrifting has carried over into the present and influenced my style today. 
Everyone who knows me knows that I either make my own clothes or thrift them! 75% of the conversations I have with people are about what I am wearing and them asking me where I got it or if I made it. It's always seemed crazy to me that people don't consider thrifting to get good deals and find unique pieces and I think sometimes people don't thrift because they don't think the clothes would look good on them (yes, people have already worn them but that's half the fun of it). Part of the art in thrifting is knowing what you like, understanding your style, and using your imagination. 
When you thrift you don't have models showing you how to style a trend, you have to use your imagination to come up with how to style a piece and that is why I love it! The pieces I find at the thrift store don't become a pieces from a brand but become a piece that is 100% ME, they become part of my brand and style and not the name they carry on their tag....I make them my own. 
When it comes to thrifting there are sooooo many options today! A lot of the time you can easily narrow your thrifting options by your style preferences. For myself personally, I LOVE Goodwill, Family Thrift Center, and other small thrift stores because I know they will always have unique pieces and often times find vintage pieces or brands. However, when I want pieces that are a well known brand or a brand with amazing quality that I could never afford to buy at full price, I always love checking out Thred Up!
I love perusing Thred Up because I don't have to sort through racks of clothes but can easily narrow my search by brand, style, size, color, you name it and it makes thrifting so much easiar on me (plus you can do it in your pajamas...WIN)! Thred Up was lovely enough to reach out and let me choose some pieces from their vast collection and this fun and summery leaf skirt was one of the pieces that I chose. I have been wanting a leaf print skirt and knew this one would be perfect as soon as I saw it and I loved styling it with all of my other latest thrift finds including this lovely eyelet top, strappy eyelet cork kitten heels, and vintage straw bag. 
I've never been one to live by the "status quo" or how the world "says" I should be, dress, act, or shop which is probably why I LOVE thrifting all the more! Plus, it's also fun to tell someone "Oh, I got it at the thrift store!" and them to just look at you shocked:) 

Are you a fan or thrifting?
Have you ever shopped at ThredUp?

-Madison