I don’t talk much about fashion. That’s not what this blog is about. It’s not that I don’t LIKE fashion or don’t CARE about fashion.. I like trendy things. I don’t want to be a SLAVE to fashion, I don’t NEED to be in the height of fashion, and I should NOT care so much about fashion that it takes priority over other things or is a cause of financial stress. Over the years I have gone back and forth about how much attention to pay to stuff like that. I mean, obviously I don’t want to be overly concerned about it but I don’t think I should ignore it completely, either. It can be a fine line to walk.

Ever wonder if you stopped walking that line completely? Like you don’t really know what your style is anymore, or better yet, your current style could be summed up as a cross between a hobo and a bag lady?

At one point in time, I really couldn’t afford to buy a lot of clothes.. but even then I tended to wear things well beyond the point I should have and I didn’t really make it a priority to go out of my way to find things that suited me well. These days I still don’t have bunches o’ bucks to spend on clothes (and even if I did I don’t think I SHOULD) but I still have kept a very small and sparse, mostly well worn, wardrobe. I guess old habits die hard.

Recently I was talking with another homeschooling mom friend and we decided, “You know what? We almost take better care of our husbands and children than we do ourselves! We need to start taking better care of US, too. And part of that includes clothes that fit WELL, look attractive, and suit our style, without breaking the bank.” Think about it: when we leave our homes we’re representing our family, our husbands, and if you’re a Christian you’re representing your faith, if you’re a homeschooler you’re representing homeschooling, and so on. Does your look say “I’m a mess and frazzled” or does it say “I’m not perfect but I feel good about my life.” I don’t know about you, but I feel good about the decisions I’ve made to follow after God, to marry James, to homeschool our children… I don’t want to give any other impression than that I’m happy with that.

Thinking that through and taking the decision to start dressing myself better seriously.. I started doing some “research.” Also known as “Online window shopping.”  It’s sad but I really wouldn’t have been able to describe my “style.” I just started looking and finding things I liked that went together. There are actually a *few* things I already own that I really like and that I kept in mind while I was looking. I wanted to keep things really mix and match.. and I wanted to keep things as affordable as possible so I kept both of those goals in mind. Online shopping carts are awesome because you can take things in and out of your cart a bazillion times while you change your mind. ; )

So anyway… after settling on a certain number of items that I’d ideally like to purchase over the next few weeks, I sat down and put it all together like this:

Click to embiggen.

There you go, my ideal fall mix & match wardrobe. I figure the jewelry and scarves will be the last and least likely to acquire but I threw them in for finishing touches. You like? I LOVE. Here’s what I’ve got so far:

  • The tapered jeans above are Old Navy plus-sized “skinny” jeans –those and some Old Navy black leggings arrived today! I recently bought a well fitting pair of very dark wash straight leg jeans and I also have a pair of dark gray “yoga” capri pants for warmer days.
  • I just bought one black and one blue long sleeve tee – actually cuter than the tees pictured here because they have a little gather at the neckline. With a long sleeved dark gray sweater, a short sleeved silvery gray sweater “jacket” and a handful of short sleeved graphic tees and semi-nice shirts that I already have, I won’t be nekkid while I slowly collect the rest of the things on my list.
  • I haven’t bought any of the sweater dresses or the skirt yet. I have ONE skirt that I really like- a knee length, straight lined, black satiny skirt. No dresses. So I’ll be wearing mostly pants until I can get to the sweater dresses, etc. = p
  • I recently bought the red flats. (On clearance! LOVE THEM.) I already have a pair of black ankle boots similar to the ones above, and today I tried to buy the gray boots but they didn’t have them at the store that I went to. I have my fingers crossed for Thursday!
  • Accessories: I just bought a lovely turquoise blue scarf and I recently bought some jewelry at a Park Lane party my sister in law hosted. I can’t wait to get the dangly earrings and the wide, bangly bracelet that I ordered. = )
Of course this is still a very small and basic wardrobe, even considering the mix and match factor. But I don’t really feel the need to have a HUGE wardrobe, just a decent one! One that fits! And flatters modestly. And suits my personality and style. I think I’m on my way to achieving that goal.
One more thing…  it’s about more than just nice clothes, isn’t it? I mean.. taking care of yourself is more than a cute shirt. My friend and I agreed there was more to it than that. We’ve decided to start taking better care of ourselves in other ways, too. Not neglecting hair cuts or nail trimming or what have you. It’s not so much about pampering ourselves as it is about NOT NEGLECTING ourselves. It doesn’t have to cost much.. you can learn to trim your own hair, do your own manicures,.. if you don’t know how to do something there’s a youtube video for just about everything these days. OH! Speaking of… that would be a great way to finish this post. How about a few YouTube videos?
So there you have it. If you’re a stay home mom like me, are you making sure that you’re fed/bathed/clothed/trimmed as often as your kids are? Or have you found yourself stuck in a shaggy rut (like I was?) What are your thoughts on balancing a well kept appearance and not getting caught up in materialism or vanity? Do you feel like you need to convince yourself that it’s OKAY to look well groomed and NICE? It’s okay! Whattya say, fellow scruffy moms.. shall we use our available resources to look clean and happy for our families? Who’s with me?!
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Hey, y’all! I’m Amber and I wear many hats. I drink a ton of coffee and I’m constantly sweeping crumbs off the floor. After 18 years of homeschooling, I’m getting close to graduating my third child and now we are starting over at preschool with our fourth, Lil Miss Mouse. She keeps us young and she’s the main reason for my excessive coffee consumption. Drink up!