Yeah, florals are an obvious pick for early spring. But there are so many fun ways to take the old standby of floral-blouse-and-jeans outside the box. This look, for example, feels very non-boring to me.
Let’s take a look at why!
1. Boyfriend-style, cuffed jeans rather than the more expected skinny or bootcut pair.
2. Extra-boho details on that gorgeous Sanctuary blouse (crochet and blousy sleeves).
3. Mixed patterns (snakeskin with florals? Why not?).
4. Extra pops of color, like that grass-green purse (by the way, the Foley & Corinna Mid City remains one of my very favorite picks for an everyday go-to bag. If you’d like to wear it year ‘round, I’d suggest red over black or brown - it’s so much more interesting, and goes with more than you’d think).
5. A mix of rugged and uber-feminine jewelry, like a leather multi-wrap bracelet and a delicate Art Deco-y gold necklace.
So anyway, this is what I wore during the second segment we filmed on Wednesday.
Want to see what else I wore?
But that’s another story.
(You’ll understand what’s going on in this photo, what with the hat and all, when you see the segment.)
And, well, I don’t have many reasons to wear bathing suits generally at the moment, it being March, but what I’m talking about in particular is this retro-ish Freya suit (I wish you could see the cut better in this photo; it’s similar to this one). I love those high-waisted bottoms and fuller-coverage tops when I see them in magazines, but I always thought they would look sort of frumpy on.
Ding ding ding! Style Evolution Moment #2. (Two in one day!)
As it turns out, I felt way better with a touch more coverage than I ever have in the littler bikinis I usually gravitate towards: sexier, more elegant, and even…oh, dear…a little more age-appropriate.
There was this one time that I was swimming on a beach in California with a whole bunch of people whom I really didn’t know very well - they were mostly friends-of-a-friend - and decided to try to body-surf a wave. And you know how body-surfing never really works, and you mostly just end up dog paddling frantically while the wave moseys right on by?
Well, this time it worked.
And I found myself careening towards shore on the crest of a wave - it was all much more “terrifying” than “exciting”, have to say - and was shortly thereafter deposited onto a very hard patch of sand directly in front of all those people whom I did not know very well. Oh, and then? The wave decided to just go ahead and take my string bikini back out into the ocean for safekeeping.
So I was bikini-less, in front of a really enormous lot of people (did I mention that there were a lot of people?), and doing this weird little flailing-burrowing thing while I tried to hide myself in the (inch) of water remaining on the sand after the wave washed back out.
It was not my finest moment.
Anyway, this is all to say that these events likely wouldn’t have transpired had I been wearing a slightly more reasonable swimsuit.
Product info after the jump.
Q. Hey Jordan,
I’m getting ready to move into a new place, and our landlord gave me one set of dimensions for the bedroom…but upon moving in we have found that it is actually a few feet smaller in both directions. I know you have experience with small living spaces, so I figured I’d see whether you have any tips for maximizing storage opportunities but still keeping the room inviting and not overcrowded.
A. You’re certainly right - while our present apartment (pictured above) has a fairly roomy bedroom by NYC standards, I have plenty of experience living in small spaces. In our last apartment (the one in Hell’s Kitchen), you had to actually sit on the bed in order to open either our dresser drawers or closet doors. That was fun.
And although right now our place looks like an episode of Hoarders, what with the boxes that I’m stockpiling for moving day (if it ever comes), baby stuff, and props and such for Jordan In The House, it…well, it usually doesn’t. I’m usually pretty good at keeping even the smallest spaces nice and orderly.
I’ll tell you!
1. First, every single piece of furniture must have drawers, or at least some kind of storage space. Do not buy adorable minimalist nightstands. Buy ones with drawers. Do not buy one of those very chic beds that sits right on the floor. Buy a nice high one that either has drawers you can leave exposed, or at least a space that you can stuff things underneath (packed away in soft bins) and then cover it all up with a (non-ruffly) dust ruffle.
2. Look for interesting storage solutions for every room in your home; the more space you have to keep things, the better. Rather than a coffee table, try an antique (or faux-antique) box that opens to store things like linens and extra pillows. And for extra seating, pick up one of those ottomans with storage space inside. (L to R: Home Decorators Storage Ottoman, Pottery Barn Nightstand, World Market Storage Coffee Table.)
3. De-clutter, but if you must clutter, clutter neatly. Display only what you must, and stash away all your extra bits and bobs in pretty boxes or trays.
4. Think outside-the-box. If you spend a lot of time in your bedroom and don’t want the bed to take up all the available space, a gorgeous day bed might be the perfect option for you.
5. Let no space go overlooked. I stack my luggage one inside the other so that the pieces don’t take up too much room, but make sure that even if you only have one large rolling bag, you use it as extra storage space (for things you don’t use often, like out-of-season clothing or bedding).
6. Make the most of your closet, adding a row of waist-level rods (so that shorter items can be hung on both levels), shoe organizers, and tiered racks for things like ties, scarves, and belts.
7. Don’t let that laundry pile up. I know, if you’re living in a city and need to cart your laundry down the block to get it done, it can be easy to let it go. But a huge heap of dirty clothes is the quickest way to make your room feel cluttered.
8. And when it comes to decor, try sticking to a simple, calming color scheme, and investing in a couple of pretty mirrors for your walls.
So I left the apartment on Wednesday morning feeling Pretty. Freaking. Chic.
Completely fabulous ’50s-style wrap dress with a full skirt and gorgeous jewelry? Check.
Red lips, all done up with my favorite tips? Yup.
Elegant, retro updo? Oh, yes.
Oh, humidity. Oh, how you undo me.
You see, I had forgotten the cardinal rule when it comes to hairstyling…and on the very day when I advised a reader not to do the same. The rule: do not get into fights with the weather, because you will not win. On days when just stepping out the door turns your clothing soggy, the only way to roll is by embracing - and then working with - all your lovely natural texture. Choose the right products, and then go to town with what you’ve got. Braid it, twist it, turn it, work it…but don’t wrestle with it.
And I lost.
And so what I ended up with was half-wavy, half-straight, and all kinds of messy. (I put it in a topknot after taking these shots.)
But you know…that weird little twisty thing my bangs are doing looks…sorrrrta ’50s…ish?
Isn’t that dress pretty great? I’ve had it for ages, and actually have a sort of funny/sort of sad story about it.
I bought it years ago, to cheer myself up during a time when lots of things were going wrong in my life: my relationship was in tatters, my career wasn’t exactly blowing anyone out of the water, and I felt generally lonely and desolate. I definitely couldn’t afford it - it’s DVF, so it had to be in the $400 range, even back then - but it just made me feel so…I don’t know, capable. Like a dress that a woman who could deal with things would wear. It made me feel like the kind of woman I wanted to be, and at that time I was willing to grab onto anything that might make me feel that way, even if that thing was only a dress.
And so I brought it home. And then just a couple of days later - before I’d even gotten the chance to wear it - an acquaintance sent me a link to some red carpet photos of a movie premiere taking place about ten minutes away from my house featuring my live-in boyfriend of nearly two years, whom I had thought was out of town, and the woman who, as it turned out, he was also in a relationship with.
So that was a nice surprise.
SHE WAS WEARING MY DRESS.
No joke. The exact same one. And the worst part?
She looked so much better in it than me.
More than that: she looked poised, elegant, pulled-together, successful, and more or less exactly like the woman I had hoped to look like when I bought it. Let’s not forget that she was also at the premiere of a movie that she had acted in with my boyfriend…so she also happened to actually sort of be that woman.
So I spent many months picking up the pieces of where I had thought my life had been headed, and figuring out which direction to turn in next, and most definitely not wearing that dress, because every time I looked at it I thought of my (now ex) boyfriend and his new girlfriend.
And really, I had nowhere to wear it to anyway.
But something I’ve learned in the years that have passed since: You don’t need to have the perfect place to wear a dress to in order to put it on. And you don’t need look like the most perfect person who ever wore a thing to wear it. Your hair can be sorta weird because you spaced on reading the weather report before leaving the house that morning. You can forget to shave your legs, and be too pale, and have a wrinkle or two in your skirt, and maybe have chipped nailpolish and dry feet and circles under your eyes because you got up early just to drink your coffee all alone in the quiet.
And you can still feel Pretty. Freaking. Chic. Because being totally pulled-together? That’s for red carpets. It’s for show.
Clothing is for you. For real. And that dress was - is - for me. The real me. Frizz and all.
What I wore during the first JITH segment we filmed on Wednesday: a dress (part of a spring styles collaboration with Very.com), in a silhouette that I have quite literally never worn before…and now plan to wear a lot. I usually go for either no sleeves or 3/4 sleeves over short sleeves, rarely cover up all the way to my neck, and generally don’t favor fitted on top/flouncy on the bottom. But that dress I wore last week, with its nipped-in waist and full-ish skirt, inspired me to experiment.
As it turns out, I really like this look. It’s just as comfortable as the more potato sack-y stuff I usually wear, and felt a lot more elegant.
And even…dare I say it…more flattering?
I remember when I was twelve or so, and all about the Paris Blues bellbottoms (remember those?), saying that I would never ever evereverever be caught dead in “tapered” (by which I meant “skinny”) jeans. The horror! And my mom said, you know…styles change. But NO. I WOULD NEVER CHANGE AND WOULD NEVER EVEREVER WEAR TAPERED JEANS AND YOU COULD NOT MAKE ME. Ever!
Well, we know how that went.
And when I was eighteen, I swore up and down that my low-rise jeans would be dragged from my cold, dead fingers, because there was no way that a high-waisted cut could ever be flattering.
And then there was that time that Francesca made me throw away my Western-y button-downs partly because they were ugly but mostly because I had been wearing them nearly every day for a good year and she was probably sick of looking at them, and I almost cried, because I couldn’t imagine ever thinking that they weren’t just paisley, pocketed style perfection.
But once that habit was broken, I realized that there were lots of other tops in my closet just sitting there, waiting to be worn…and if I was telling the truth…well, those shirts were kinda ugly. (And also kinda awesome. Just saying.)
Anyway, this is all to say that I am someone who gets very worked up about my commitment to one look or another and simply can’t imagine ever changing my mind. I usually wear dresses like this…so it was a little tough to imagine what this blue, buttoned-up dress would look like on - forget about how I would feel in it.
But I felt great.
Sometimes being open to a little style evolution is just what you need to keep on moving in the direction you want to go.
GANT sunglasses, vintage belt.
I know, you’re thinking, “Bad purchase what? That’s what you wear every day, Jordan!”
And you would be right. Which is why the Sold Design Lab neon shorts (which I picked up in three colors during Saturday’s shopping trip) and the perfectperfectperfect grey t-shirt (it’s Vince, which I usually find too expensive, but not at an outlet mall!) was such. a bad. purchase.
Because I have this tendency to be very lazy about what I wear on a day-to-day basis, and if I have nowhere to be and no cameras to prattle into tend to more or less default to variations on the same outfit. In the winter, it’s black skinny jeans and black t-shirts, and in the summer it’s short shorts and relaxed-fit tees.
And I’ve been trying to break that habit mostly because, you know, my other clothing deserves some love, too.
But now I own these things. And they are every single thing that I like about getting dressed in the summer, and now I’m not going to wear anything else, ever.
Look at those. You might as well glue them onto my legs right now, and scrape them off come September.
Q. Jordan, I’m having major issues with my hair. It’s not doing anything, just super duper flat. I’ve decided to try and invest some TLC to get things back on track and am going to see Karmela at John Sahag Workshop.
Since this is going to be a spendy endeavour - do you have any advice on how to get the most out of a haircut/salon visit?
A. Hey Megan!
I actually gave Karmela a ring to get her tips for how to make the most of a salon visit, and above all, what she emphasized is being totally honest and open with your stylist. For example, let him/her know the following:
- Whether you feel comfortable using products on your hair.
- How often you exercise (you may want a style that allows you to pull your hair back if you’re big on exercise).
- If you have time to blowdry/style your hair in the mornings, and how handy you are with styling tools.
- How much time and effort you feel comfortable putting into your hair on a daily basis.
To that, I’d add that you should feel free to ask your stylist to show you a couple of tricks when they’re blow-drying and styling your hair post-cut. Some won’t be particularly into giving you a mini-tutorial, but my feeling is hey, you’re paying for the service, and if you’re gracious about your request I don’t see why they wouldn’t. At the very least, pay attention to what your stylist is doing; don’t just sit there through the whole process with your nose buried in your magazine.
For ensuring that even when my child finally starts passing out for ten hours straight (!), I don’t get too good of a night’s sleep.
Way to keep me on my toes, guys.
On Saturday’s trip to the outlet mall, I spotted these at Christmas Tree Shops and obviously came very, very close to buying them.
But then I realized: no need!
Because I ordered a whole bunch of enormous Mason jars in preparation for my blue Mason jars tutorial, but since I ended up deciding to use regular-sized ones instead, I now have…well, too many Mason jars.
But as it turns out, there is no such thing as too many Mason jars. Endless uses, I tell you. Endless.
DIY CHALKBOARD STORAGE JARS
Start with your basic twist-top jars. If you’re using them for things like flour and sugar, go ahead and get the big ones. If you’d like to use them for spices or smaller-scale things, the regular-sized ones should do.
Pick up some chalkboard paint in either black or green; whichever you prefer (your local Home Depot should carry it, or you can get it here).
Mark off the area that you want to paint with tape (I used the writing on the jar as a sort of ruler to make my edges straight). Be careful to lay your tape against totally flat areas, because if you lay your tape over ridged spots the paint may run into the cracks.
Apply two coats (use a good-quality brush to avoid streaks), allowing to dry in between, and gently remove the tape.
Final step: Pick up some pretty colored chalk, and label however you desire!
This is also a neat little trick to use for weddings (write guests’ names on clear votive holders and use them to indicate the seating arrangement) and parties (paint chalkboard squares onto stemless wine glasses so that guests don’t lose track of which drink is theirs).
Q. Hi Jordan,
I know so much about you from your site that I feel I am writing to an old friend. So, dear friend, I’m Delia and I have a dilemma.
I’ve been invited to a wedding, and after church [there is] a late lunch in a beautiful location by the sea. The theme is “tea party.” I have a beautiful emerald body-[conscious] dress that I’d like to wear…but what accessories would you recommend? How do you feel about gloves?
Abu Dhabi, UAE
A. Fun question! And what a fun-sounding wedding.
Of course the more traditional attire for a tea party-style wedding would be florals and/or pastels, but I love that you’ve chosen something different. With an emerald, knee-length dress I think there are two ways you could go:
1) Slightly over-the-top, Alice in Wonderlandish, and dramatic (in which case, hey: do the gloves. How many chances in your life do you get to wear something like that?)
2) Refined and elegant with a retro twist (I love pink with emerald, provided you choose the right shade).
Product info is after the jump…along with a few more budget-friendly suggestions.
Dress: Alberta Ferretti
The DIGS Channel (and my own show, Jordan In The House), launches April 2…one week from today!
(Can you tell I’m excited? I’m excited.)
(Kendrick would like to let you in on his very special “secret recipe”)…
Wonderful Richard Scarry…
Weird rattling turtles…
And late, late brunches after an early, early rise.
And naps. Lots of naps. (I don’t even remember laying down for that one. It was a face-plant situation.)
I, like everyone else on the planet, love outlet mall shopping. I mean, obviously. But, because I live in Manhattan and do not own a car (yet! I’m gearing up for a guys-tell-me-what-kind-of-car-to-lease - cheap! and good mileage! and safe! - post), I never get to do it.
On Saturday, I got to do it, at the Tanger Outlets in Deer Park, where I went in search of fun spring-y stuff for upcoming segments. (I look so serious in that shot! So Matrix-y. It’s the sunglasses.)
Want to see some of my favorite finds?
First, this Patterson J. Kincaid dress that I really wish I had bought, after looking at this photo. Ah, well. Maybe they…deliver?
Tell me these DVF clutches aren’t incredible.
Hanky Panky! Always good.
Obviously an essential purchase. (If any of you know some great baby apps, by the way, would love to hear about them. The only ones I’ve downloaded are extremely weird and make terrifying noises, and are all sorts of not-entertaining.)
And why has no one ever told me about Christmas Tree Shops before? Has everyone secretly been sneaking off to this place except for me? Is it somewhere that everyone else in the world has heard of, and I’m about to get made fun of for being all shocked and awed that it doesn’t sell exclusively ornaments and such? I have a feeling that the answer to the latter to that is a big old Yes.
Anyway, it’s more or less The Store Made Exclusively For Jordan’s Enjoyment, so I spent awhile there. I got too overwhelmed by the options, though, and ended up only purchasing a bunch of baby wipes (really), so…I need to go back. For furniture. Because I spotted a wrought-iron patio set for fifty bucks, and almost bought it despite the fact that the only place in the apartment with space to put it would be actually inside the baby’s crib, along with the baby.
Here’s my feet and my spoils. (The baby wipes are on the left.)
Tanger Outlets is a sponsor of Ramshackle Glam.
For Friday’s JITH shoot, we camped out at One Stop Beer Shop, in East Williamsburg.
One Stop Beer Shop is a fairly new addition to the neighborhood, offering Growlers-to-go, Kombucha on tap, and one hell of a light fixture (seriously).
Also? I just looked them up on Yelp! and realized that I missed the opportunity to have my first pickleback in nearly two years. This makes me sad.
I wore a pretty ring (from bamboopink)…
…and tried Moonshine for the very first time (hey, it was after noon).
This is me with bartender Pamela trying out their house specialty, the Margabucha. It has Kombucha and tequila in it, a salted rim, and tastes kind of like spiked pink lemonade. Recommended.
On the (longer than expected) walk from subway to bar, I passed this amazing place. What is it? Don’t know. But it was too neat not to show you.
Can’t wait for you to see the finished product!