Style Recipe: Casual Polished in a Snap

Style Recipe: Casual Polished in a Snap

You probably wouldn't guess it from this blog, but when it comes to being casual, I have it down to an absolute science. Perhaps my love of casual chic is evidenced by the number of button-downs and pairs of boyfriend jeans I own (p.s. - the cheaper the better, no fancy designer jeans when it comes to boyfriend jeans!). Keep reading for the formula on how to look casual polished in under 10 minutes.

Total honesty needed here. How obvious is it that I resorted to the remote+tripod for these photos? I can't help it if my [houston] is busy working in the hospital, up before dawn and home after sunset! Plus these non-daylight-savings time hours are killin' me...

On the plus side, now that I've (sort of) mastered the art of taking my own photos again, I will be able to post my outfits a lot more often than I have been in recent weeks. Yay?

Peep that fiery red nail color I'm sporting! It's a fresh coat of my very first Shellac manicure (which is a long-wearing UV hardened nail polish which lasts 14 days or more). It's a classic jelly-like red with no sparkles, and no shimmer (gasp!) and, yes...I requested it for that reason. It's hard to find a nail color that is simultaneously classic and seasonally festive. And this does the trick! What should my next Shellac color be?

When it comes to looking put-together, coordinate colors for maximum efficiency. Organize your accessories ahead of time based on metal or color scheme. Or, do what I do (the lazy route): wear a hodge-podge of mixed metals all at once to tie them all together. (Witness: cuff, necklaces, clutch, watch.)

The recipe is simple. Throw on a casual button down shirt, preferably one with a pattern but a white one is always classic. Next, throw on a pair of boyfriend, slouchy jeans (here's a great pair), and fold a thin (think: the width of the hem & no more) amount and roll up a few times to expose your ankles. Next, on goes a sweater or cardigan. Haphazardly button only a few buttons on your cardigan. Flip the cuffs of your shirt up and over the sweater, pop up your color a bit (to make it look like you at least tried).

Throw on some chic wedges (heels are kind of a must here for the whole "polished" look). Swipe your lips with a classic shade like bright berry red (mine is MAC's Holiday 2011 in a lovely matte red which is sadly sold out, but here's a great alternative) and grab some shades and a clutch, or just your regular bag. It doesn't matter, right? Because you rolled out of bed like this, right?

Right.