60s · 70's · styling · Uncategorized · vintage · vintage clothing

Little Bit ‘o Spring

My Spring fever is far more advanced this year than one would expect after a move to such warmer climes (Chicago transplant to Phoenix if you are just tuning in!), so I’m taking advantage of any and every nod to warmer weather that I can– especially now that it’s March!

Of all of the decades of recent fashion history, I have to say that the 60’s and 70’s really take the lead in warm weather wear– I can’t think of sunshine and iced tea without a bright print mini coming to mind.  I currently have several adorable dresses in the shop that fit this description, and will be listing one or two more in the coming week.  Check ’em out!


One of my favorite ways to sport this coy style of dress in early spring is paired with knit tights for warmth and layered up with a sweater and jacket– this makes for a super comfortable and sharp look when the weather is a bit chilly yet for bare limbs.


Outfit Details

{ dress } – vintage 60’s, in the shop!

{ sweater } – U.O.

{ tights } – Modcloth

{ jacket } – vintage 50’s, in the shop!

{ heels } – vintage 70’s, thrifted

50's · Enneagram · God · psychology · Uncategorized · vintage clothing

Nuance + Understanding


Warp speed has been achieved over the past couple of weeks, seemingly without any warning whatsoever.  In truth, this is something that I’ve prayed for– funny how bittersweet answered prayer sometimes is for us fickle humans.  Even after crying out to God for my own things going on here, now that reality is resembling that, I find myself glancing longingly back at my previous overabundance of time.  But then, would any circumstance ever satisfy?  For these reasons I am so thankful that I don’t need to find fulfillment in the temporary (as tempting as it is to try), busy or not.

Somehow I never shared this very cozy, wintery desert ensemble, though these photos are from November (I think?). There’s just something about velvet that is so easy and elegant– I’ve been pleased to see that it fits right in with the ruggedness of Arizona (or perhaps is a perfect balance to it?).  Maybe the fabric brings to mind times long past in these western territories– floor length velvet skirts, laced up leather boots… Yes, there’s something “old world” feeling about velvet.

Sometimes when I have these thoughts, there’s a flash of shame over anyone ever perceiving the above as superficial, because in reality it’s so much more than that for me.  There’s something about the way God designed my brain that seeks and senses balance, and understanding in all things– this includes aesthetics, but also things like relational dynamics, psychology and identity.  I find that my knack for mediating conflict, seeing potential in people/things and spotting missing pieces is fueled by the same part of me that notes the order in beauty, like the perfection that exists in the way soft wildflowers sidle up to hard, jagged rocks, and the way God’s word manifests in our very existence.  Perhaps it’s the logic of truth/balance that God wired into me?  I’ve spent many years sniffing around this natural tendency of mine, trying to pin it down or spell it out, and recently God has been nudging me more about it.  Last week alone I had two separate spontaneous conversations with friends that begged the question, “what purpose has God made you for?”  Even a Bible study that I am currently doing of the book of Daniel keeps peppering my mind with questions about discernment, wisdom and knowledge– the divine kind that only comes from the God of Everything.

Because I am an abundantly introspective person (I bet you couldn’t tell), I’ve spent plenty of time breaking down the mechanics of the way God designed my mind, and the potential of his design in all humans.  Be it through MBTI, Love Languages, Big Five, Enneagram or any other number of good tools, I’ve digested them all.  As they should, the pieces that each of these tools helped me to understand about myself correlate to the next– though measuring different things, they all agree at the end of the day about my general wiring.  These tools have helped confirm some overall truths about the way that I’m distinct from other humans, my sin patterns, and strengths, but they were never meant to determine or confirm something as great as God’s calling on our lives.  This is where I find myself at present.

Despite the fact that I believe God has made me to pursue understanding through the study of human motivations, I’m often frustrated with the way our culture clings to labels– perhaps its because true creation includes nuance; so a label is only a half truth (just the way C.S. Lewis said that Satan best deceives us). Humans seem to be desperate to categorize things into bite sized little boxes, in hopes of gaining control through total understanding.  This isn’t bad in and of itself, but expecting all things (including the supernatural) to fall into these strict categories can be.  As someone who has a radar and a constant thirst for understanding, I know this intimately– that if we are to truly receive these things, we must not make idols of, or seek to control them. This is a conclusion that I reached long ago in regards to Spiritual Gifts– that at the end of the day, we can identify patterns in the way that God uses us, but we must let go of our expectations + need to define in order to fully be the vessels that he desires us to be.

And introspection off. 😉 For now.

Just so you know, you can now also follow my blog with Bloglovin if that’s a thing you do.




{ d r e s s } – thrifted via Goodwill, vintage 50’s

{ t o p } – thrifted via Goodwill

{ n e c k l a c e } – handmade via Etsy

{ s h o e s } – thrifted via Poshmark

30s · outfit · reflection · Uncategorized · vintage

New Thing

Photo Jan 01, 1 06 12 PM

Belated as it may be, I’ve been meaning to write and document some thoughts for this new year of life before it passes me by– January is already half over as it is!  As you can see, I have liked white for New Years day ever since I first had the inkling— there’s just something audacious and fresh about white in winter!  Perfect for welcoming in a New Year.

This New Year has been my first as a wife and my first as a Phoenician (fancy for dweller of Phoenix), really this entire season has been one of firsts.  Change is a wonderful, but sometimes wearying thing, bringing with it new breath– sometimes in the form of balmy breeze, and other times a gale force wind.

I know that God is “doing a new thing” in my life right now, but specifically what lies ahead, I don’t know.  Funny how this impatient culture that we live in, breeds us to demand to know what’s ahead, so that we can control the outcome.  Truly, I find it an amazing relief, in this season of newness, that I do not need to be at the helm of where my life is going.  Despite that and the excitement that this new season brings, I know that in 2018 I’ll need to be on constant guard against my flesh and that easy pitfall of desiring to control my future.  For some that might be anxiety, fear or apathy.  My personal brand of natural sin patterns are frustration and discontent– these are my shortcomings that flare up in times of uncertainty, and I’m doing my best even now to surrender them to Christ.

Oh, the hopes I have for this year!  Some realistic and so close that I can touch.  Others (true to my nature) are quite far fetched and would/will only be realized through divine providence.  I’m learning to engage with both of these kinds of hopes, reaching but keeping only a loose hold– not gripping too tightly, even to the seemingly tangible.

Who knows?  This year may grow my Enneagram work: allowing me to help more people identify and dismiss lies that plague them, and return to their identity in the grace of Christ.

Maybe this year I’ll actually allow more of my mind to flow out on paper in the form of artwork– and have the courage to share it when I do.  Maybe I’ll stop hiding from this and other creative gifts that God has given me, investing them the way I was designed to do.

Maybe I will finally write here more regularly.

I have great hopes for friendship (both old and new), limitless learning, and continuing to grow in contentment and purpose right here where and when I am.  Each year it seems that God underlines the importance of that– finding contentment and joy in every circumstance.  Oh, I am still growing in my natural proclivity towards this, but it gets easier with time– easier to laugh at inconveniences, less hesitation when something goes wrong before I switch gears and allow God to show me the lemonade behind the lemons.  It’s amazing how beautiful this life is when I choose to live in the knowledge that the God that I serve, redeems all things.


Photo Jan 01, 1 48 00 PM

Photo Jan 01, 1 07 16 PM

Photo Jan 01, 1 06 32 PM

Photo Jan 01, 1 07 29 PM

Photo Jan 01, 1 06 40 PM

D e t a i l s 

{ dress } – vintage 30’s, coming soon to the shop!

{ cardigan } – thrifted

{ shoes } – thrifted via Poshmark

{ bracelet } – gift


thrifting · Uncategorized · vintage

Catch + Release {purple}

I have always enjoyed seeing potential in things, and have been told that I’m pretty good at “picking ’em”. This often includes people, situations, places and (yes) clothing– especially in regards to ethical style gems via second hand shopping.  Pertaining to the latter, this can be quite a bittersweet thing, because there is just too much good out there!  Over the years, I’ve often found amazing clothing pieces at great prices that are not my size, and felt a sadness at seeing a great deal go to waste. So recently while searching Etsy, it hit me: I should totally be sharing these not-my-size pieces here on my blog, and maybe somebody out there would score a sweet piece!

So, without further ado, here are some awesome garments (from my ferocious search habits and private Etsy favorites) that I wish were my size! I’ll group these posts around specific color, print or styles and share the gamut of items that wouldn’t fit me (but might fit you)!  PS- I’m kind of a cheapskate, so good prices only will be represented here. 😉


  1. 50’s lavender western, metallic rick rack midi skirt – $54 (currently on sale!)DiffSize0DiffSize0.1
  2. 50’s lavender gingham cotton dress with floral details – $69DiffSize0.3DiffSize0.2
  3. 50’s lavender bucket pocket full skirt – $38Diffsize0.4DiffSize1_28
  4. 80’s-does-40’s purple pocket detail wiggle skirt – $42Diffsize0.5Diffsize0.6
  5. 50’s lavender cotton day dress – $62Processed with VSCO with a5 preset
  6. 60’s lavender tulip embroidered pencil skirt – $60diffsize0.9


7) 70’s Lilac beaded day dress -$62


8) 80’s Metallic Lavender Sheath Dress – $39


Don’t know your measurements or why they matter?  It’s a practice I have gotten into over the years because of the fickleness of vintage-vs-modern day sizing, but all in all is the smartest way to shop!  Why?  Because sizes may vary, but measurements are standard from brand to brand and decade to decade– 29″ inches is 29″ inches.  Got me?  This little bit of info is usually pretty liberating, especially for ladies who normally dread online shopping.

More where that came from next time, as I am always combing for unique and affordable pieces.

outfit · personal style · Uncategorized

Blue skies + time flies


Occasional white puffs in our usually solid blue skies, chillier temps and pumpkin-mania has reminded me lately that time is passing.  Thanksgiving is around the corner, and Phoenix is starting to feel like home.

For some reason, I’m the kind of person that compiles ideas and content, yet never posts it.  Why?  Something to do with being naturally bad at action, and finding musing to be quite a bit easier than moving. 😉  Alas, here I am trying to mend my ways.  I’ve documented a few outfits lately, intending to post them here, but have been wondering if there’s a better way to do so.  Once upon a time, I read this blog called Dear Baby, and found its’ author to be such a humble and genuine person– even in the way she posted outfits (an admirable feat, in my opinion).  So, at least for awhile, I’m going to try to follow her method of posting: not dominating an entire post with just one outfit, but posting a week of outfits together in one post.  Truly, this sounds great because there is so much more that I want to write about than style, yet it’s such a natural way to include it– making it clear that these are actually clothes I wore this week, not an outfit that I put on just to photograph.  That kind of realness matters to me.

And so, this past week:


I really enjoy re-purposing things, and though sometimes I joke that it’s because I’m a cheapskate, it’s really because I love to see the potential in things (and people alike)!  This “dress” is one that I wore as a 10th grader in my dance studio’s annual Grande Ballet– I unearthed it recently and thought what a pretty skirt it had.  A pair of scissors later and I have another great (leotard-less) dress!   PS- These awesome faux Victorian booties are for sale at Novel Nellie, size 7!

{ dress } – old ballet costume, turned dress.
{ cardigan } – thrifted
{ necklace } – handmade, gift
{ booties } – vintage 80’s, for sale at Novel Nellie!
{ bag } – handmade, Rachel Elise



Though I went with “early 40’s”, this vintage cutie of a dress just doesn’t contain enough dating info to be certain of anything more than “late 30’s – early 40’s”.  This period of the 20th century is my favorite for fashion history, so I was pretty smitten to find this dress– even despite it’s sun fading.

Every year, early in the fall, I really enjoy wearing chunky socks with ankle strap vintage heels and bare legs, before the weather gets too cold.  It’s been pretty wonderful this year to be able to extend that (because in Phoenix it never gets too cold), and abandon full length tights all together.  Don’t get me wrong, I love the addition of legwear to an outfit, but I’m really enjoying a departure from the necessity of the climate I’ve long known.

dress } – vintage early 40’s, thrifted
necklace } – handmade, Etsy
bag } – handmade, Rachel Elise
socks } – old favorites, unsure of origin.
{heels} – vintage 70’s, thrifted.

Photo Oct 17, 3 47 27 PMPhoto Oct 17, 5 49 29 PMPhoto Oct 17, 5 49 57 PM

art · create · projects · Uncategorized

Create: DIY block print onesie



I’m that girl who looks at something at Target or World Market or Pinterest and says Whaaaat? $40? I could make that.  Long before DIY was a term, I was doing things myself. Whether this comes mostly from a sick need to individualize everything, a great desire to create, or the fact that I’m kind of a cheapskate, is not entirely clear.  There’s just something about seeing potential in a mundane thing that’s wonderful– literally, full of wonder. 😉

From hand dying my bridal shoes, to creating paper flower decor and upcycling furniture, there are a good amount of projects (both wedding and not) that I’d love to share here in the coming months.  To kick that off, I thought I’d start with a current project, initiated by the birth of my brand new nephew, Killian!  Because my brother and SIL live in Ohio, I wasn’t able to attend their Sprinkle for the little guy, but I knew that I wanted to send him something special.  After much browsing of Etsy, and pondering, I had that aforementioned moment: I could make half of this stuff for way less.  Don’t get me wrong, I am one of the biggest Etsy proponents you’ll ever meet, but sometimes it’s just more personal and special to create a gift with your own hands!

Enter  I N S P I R A T I O N!


And so, I settled on block print as my DIY device to create a onesie for Killian + a separate Big Bro gift for my nephew Gunnar! And so I went perusing Goodwill and Michael’s for these select ingredients:




  • Neutral onsie(s) – solid or subtle print
  • Neutral toddler tee (of same or complementary color) for Gunnar  I ended up switching gears here b/c I couldn’t find one! Perhaps the Matchbox cars that I ended up with were a better Big Bro gift anyway. 😉

M I C H A E L’ S

  • One or two bottles of fabric paint (one of the soft varieties)
  • One sheet of craft foam

You may also need some things that I already had on hand:

  • Exacto knife or scissors
  • Thread + needle
  • Scrap cardboard + paper
  • Small/med paint brush
  • Hot glue gun + glue stick
  • Skinny permanent marker

And then I set to work!


{ S T E P  1. – design + create the block print }

Begin by cutting your cardboard into several same-sized squares, (I ended up using 5) and hot glueing them into a neat stack– this will be your print base.  Know that you can make the width/size of your base whatever works best with the size your stamp/print is going to be– you’ll see that I did one large and one small for an accent.

Now it’s design time! Though you are going to draw directly on the craft foam, I found it most helpful to doodle a bit first on scrap paper, before drawing the final contenders with sharpie on the foam.  One huge sheet of this stuff was literally 99 cents at my local Michael’s, so don’t be afraid to draw different shapes, even if you don’t end up using them.

Once you are satisfied with your shapes (I ended up scrapping the little tree for the big one!), you can hot glue them onto your base– make sure you only have glue underneath your shape. If it’s squishing out around it, that will impact what your print looks like!  I did have some glue squish, but just used my exacto knife to trim it from the cardboard for a flat surface around my shape.



{ S T E P  2. – test + print }

From here, it’s all about playing– trial and error.  I pulled out scrap paper (an old envelope), poured my paint into a little container, and practiced printing on the paper. Through this process, I realized that I achieved a much cleaner (less gloppy) print by applying paint to my block with a paintbrush in a thin layer.

Onward to fabric!  I know this part seems daunting in the moment, because misapplying the block is messy business (though, PS: my paint did come off pretty well with soap and water, if done quickly after application) .  Personally, I think it’s important to just go with your instincts, and know that nothing is going to be perfect with handmade things– that’s part of the charm of them!  Do make sure to insert a layer inside your onesie to prevent paint transfer– I used a doubled paper towel, which worked well.


{ S T E P  3. – dry + embroider }

Once I was finished printing my nephew’s onesie, I allowed it to dry 24 hours and then began work on the little white embroidered outlines of the trees.  You could totally use embroidery floss for a heavier look, but plain thread achieved the lighter accent I was going for. When the embroidery was finished, I sealed the paint with a quick iron, and off it went in the mail to little Killian!

Just a note: take into account the colors you are working with! I ended up mixing a bit of black with my orange, because I realized I liked the color combo of sage + rust better, but this caused my trees to not pop as much as they would have in that brighter hue. Honestly though, I don’t regret it at all because that mistake creative opportunity is what caused me to implement the embroidered outline and the brighter orange triangles! Which, in my opinion, made the thing a whole ton more special.  “Necessity is the mother of invention” indeed!

Even in our currently handmade-friendly culture, I think sometimes people who don’t create for a living are still hesitant to make things!  I don’t think I’d ever sell hand printed onesies on Etsy, but definitely think this is an easy, limitless and cute project that I’ll return to when new little ones come into my life.


40's · change · outfit · personal style · Uncategorized · vintage

Finding + Keeping


Settling into this desert landscape has been both fascinating and frustrating, but as time goes, I am developing a stride of sorts. I’m learning that life has a lot to do with opportunity, finding the right one and embracing it– but how?  In this technological age, we have a plethora of tools at our fingertips, but honestly the process of finding has always been a heavily spiritual one for me.  In order to find remarkable things, one must be all in– willing to lean forward at a moments notice, and not minding a couple of falls in the process.

This past year of life has reflected risk well taken to me in so many ways.  After having experienced the kind of God-provision, interesting experiences, and learning opportunities that life in action entails, you would think this would be an easy choice to make!  It often seems to me, that the most worth ways we can live, require the most guts to continue– backsliding into comfort, especially when facing the unknown, is just so easy.

About two hours ago, I got out a beautiful 40’s evening gown to steam before modeling for my NovelNellie Instagram account, and realized with horror that it didn’t fit.  I have modeled this dress before comfortably, and now I couldn’t even zip it up!  The following thirty minutes were spent trying not to downward spiral– not because of my weight or size, but because I have to be able to model these dresses!  I am all I have (even my seldom used dress form was left in Chicago).  And just like that, my eyes could have been so easily drawn away from moving forward, and stuck on moping and frustration. Thankfully, it only took me about ten minutes to realize that, and onward my day has gone regardless.  How?  Because I know that God always has a plan, even for little things.  I have seen it play out in my life, chapter after chapter– when the skies look dark, there is sometimes a storm, but afterwards, the sun does return.

Hey, especially here in Phoenix. 😉

Outfit Details

{ sailboat skirt } – vintage, 40’s

{ blouse } – thrifted

{ oxfords } – Sole Society

{ necklace } – gift, Etsy

{ watch } – Swatch, gift