The Refined Woman

Scroll to Info & Navigation

OUTFIT | Tailor Made

Y’all I am a changed woman; it was 48 degrees the past three days + it was glorious.  With the snow melted and the sun out this city truly comes alive!

Sunday afternoon my friend and I walked through Central Park for hours before walking to church; it was heavenly.  

Most of today I spent inside on my taxes (ugh…April is coming up fast friends!), but I made sure to leave time for a run at Prospect Park.  I was beginning to truly doubt my affections for this city over the past 2 months (a.k.a the Polar Vortex nightmare!), but the past few days reminded me how much beauty, energy, and life take place in New York.  

Now switching gears.  Today really belongs to the tale of conquering my most coveted Ralph Lauren Blazer.  Le’sigh.  I adore this blazer.

My friend purchased this same blazer probably about two years ago.  As soon as she took it out of the bag, my mouth was watering.  The gold buttons + the Ralph Lauren crest + not to mention it is navy blue (which is my black!).  I hunted this baby down for months with no luck, and then ONE DAY friends.

One day I hopped into TJMaxx to grab something random, and there hanging on the final sale rack for $60 was my blazer.  I may have squealed, and ran over to grab it, only to find that it was two sizes too big.  For an instant I wanted to cry,  but like most every investment piece in my closet it goes straight to the tailor so I figured I’d buy it and my tailor would work her magic.

I had her let out the sleeves 3/4 an in., tuck the sides, and bring in the shoulders a bit.  While having a good tailor can be a bit pricey (it actually cost more to get the blazer tailored than what I paid for it); it is well worth the investment.  Now have a classic blazer that will surpass the trends of the season, and last me for years.

Photos by: F.E Castleberry + I was honored to have him feature this outfit on his wonderful blog Unabashedly Prep (be sure + check it out!).

Ladies (and gentlemen) if you do not have a tailor, you must get one.  Here’s why:

  • I’m 5’10, have a 36 inch inseam (yes you read that correctly…my legs never end) + I have an athletic build.  Unless you are a true sample size (which lets face it, 95% of us aren’t), then the clothes that we buy simply were not created to fit our bodies.  (All ladies should let out a huge sigh of relief at this!)  We all have had those shopping experiences where we leave feeling discouraged that nothing fits quite right, and we feel like something is wrong with us!  (Don’t even get me started on jean shopping!).  However, take heart this is a normal experience when we take into consideration that all of our bodies are different + unless you’re going to put on a one-size-fits-all spandex body suit there’s no way clothes can fit all of our beautiful and unique body types.  We simply have to have the eyes to see which pieces are worth taking right on over to the tailor.
  • Always your investment pieces!  Your super trendy shirt that you bought for $20 or your mass produced denim skinny jeans that were $35 probably aren’t what you’ll be taking to the tailor.  However, that blazer that you want to wear to work, those trousers that you’ll wear for the next 5 years, your winter jacket…yes those are all pieces to take into your tailor to get that perfect fit. 
  • Think of your tailor as an investment.  Your tailor will take a blazer that you could wear for one or two seasons, and make it a blazer to last 20 seasons.   Here in the city I go to Sullivan’s in Manhattan + I went to the same tailor in Newport Beach on 17th st. for almost 4 years.

Happy Tuesday Friends + Cheers to finding your Tailor that is the perfect fit for you! (yes…that pun was actually intended!)

XO,

Kat

OUTFIT: Put a Flag on It

Happy Memorial Day Folks!

I’m about to leave my house to grab food for a little bbq at my place this evening with some close friends.  I’m dying to make homeade whipped cream + cobbler!

To me Memorial Day means Summer is OFFICIALLY here!  There are so many sweet memories that come to my mind when I think of summer:

running barefoot.

fresh watermelon juice dripping down your hands as you eat it.

fireworks.

barbecues.

beach days.

RED WHITE and BLUE.

Outfit Details:

Top:  Ralph Lauren

Skirt:  Anthropologie from a few years ago (similar)

Shoes:  GH Bass

I’m thankful for this day, and for the many men and women that serve our country so sacrificially.  We would not be where we are today if they were fighting for our freedom!

Go outside today.  Bake a cobbler with fresh fruit.  Hug your family and friends, and stay up too late telling stories!

XO,

Kat

OUTFIT: Navajo + Denim

As I shared with you last week, I fell in love…with thrifting.

This lovely navajo wrap dress is fabulous!  (I’ve worn it 3x in the last 7 days…oops #sorryimnotsorry)  

What I love about this dress is that it’s a classic A-line silhouette (universally flattering), and I just think wrap dresses are a wardrobe staple!

Now that I’ve got the thrift-ing bug I’m dying to know some good spots in LA + NYC.  Join our conversation on instagram, we’d love to know your thoughts!

Photos by:  Michelle Kim

Wrap Dress: Thrift (similar + similar)

Jean Jacket:  Zara (similar)

Shoes: [old]  Urban Outfitters (similar)

OUTFIT: That’s a Wrap

  Image and video hosting by TinyPic

A few weeks ago we talked about wardrobe staples.  The Little Black Dress was our topic of conversation.  Have you found yours yet?

Today I bring to your another wardrobe staple: The Wrap Dress.  I am a dress girl through and through, and here’s why:  they are so easy!  You slip a dress over your head, and you are instantly more put together.  People always ask me how I can photograph in a dress. My response:  it is so easy, I can move around in it, squat, bend.  Dresses are moveable and with ease knock up your dressiness a few notches.

In fact, last Saturday I was shooting a wedding in Dallas, TX., and I wore this dress the entire day shooting; it was fabulous!

A few things to note on wrap dresses:

  • Length:  notice mine is just about knee level.  That’s a good rule of thumb.  Any shorter, and it turns into a night out with the girls and not work appropriate.
  • The Wrap:  Make sure when you try on your wrap that you do a few twirls in it.  Make sure that wrap is going to stay closed.  To be safe with mine I safety pin the wrap midway down just in case a gust of wind comes through.
  • Quality vs. Quantity:  This wrap dress was definitely an investment piece, but our wardrobe staples should be.  I found it at the Kate Spade outlet on sale thankfully!  

Dress:  Kate Spade Here + Similar

Wedges:  Tory Burch + Similar 

Burberry Purse:  Vintage (Gift from my mother) Similar

Refined at Fashion Week: Day III

image

There has never been a post this long in the history of The Refined Woman because there has never been a day so epic to recount.

Though I am a fan of the Hyperbole I promise I am not exaggerating when I say yesterday was the day that all the dreams our little hearts could hold were fulfilled. 

Lest you think I still exaggerate. Let me begin with some images. I keep looking at them to remind myself it was real. 

But first, what I wore. Because that’s important, right? Maybe not as much as all the aforementioned dreams being realized, but I am happy to say that after yesterday, all the money I spent (3x more than the pants themselves!) to have these thrifted leather pants tailored seems like it was worth it.

image

Cardigan : JCrew / Blouse : Lush by Nordstrom / Leather Pants : Thrifted (similar) / Heels : Louboutin  / Camera Satchel : ONA

image

From Kat : What is on my bucket list you may ask?  Among sky diving and being fluent in another language is attending a JCrew Presentation at New York Fashion Week.

When Em and I found out we had tickets to the Fall 2013 JCrew Presentation there may or may not have been squeals, tears, and a little dance party.  

(Spoiler alert : we screamed like girls.)

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

Here’s a shot of THE JENNA HERSELF with Anna Wintour.  NBD. (REALLY BIG DEAL.)

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

From Kat : What I love about JCrew is how each season they push the envelope with their mixture of patterns, textures, and colors with classic silhouettes; it’s why they’re able to appeal to the 18 year old hipster, the 30something business woman, and Anna Wintour.  You can’t beat class, and you cannot beat Jenna Lyons innovative mixture of all things new with all things timeless.

From me : That about sums it up. This collection rocked my world in every way possible. 

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

(JCREW SHOW BONUS : The guys. ) Sorry to state the obvious here, but these gentleman I mean how good looking can you get?  Really?

From Em : I think Kat may have found a husband. I saw them making eyes.

image

image

image

image

image

image

Now, while it would have been MORE THAN ENOUGH to just see Jenna Lyons in the flesh, we were able to say hello after the show and she was so gracious and lovely to us. We may have even handed her a business card and snapped her photograph before swooning. She kissed us and the cheek, complimented our outfits, and was super sweet.  

Truly, Jenna, you are THE Refined Woman. Thank you for inspiring women in fashion everywhere.image

WAIT.

That’s not all.

At the J Crew Presentation I was able to introduce myself to a woman who really inspired me to follow my passion for fashion blogging and photography… Garance Dore. I took a photo of her at the presentation (the lighting was just OK… but Kat took this one later on which I just adore. Go Kat!)

Garance, thank you for being so gracious in person. You do not know how much it meant to me.

image

and THEN. (then!!)

I took a photo of the man, the legend, the Sartorialist himself. 

As I bent back to photograph him in my heels and ridiculous leather pants I almost ATE it on the concrete of Lincoln Center. I imagine that’s where this little smile came from…

image

And then I died of embarrassment and I am pretty sure I ran away. I guess it’s a good to have some moments to keep us humble, am I right?

If you looked at and read this whole post, bless you. More good stuff to come tomorrow.

xo,

Em

OUTFIT: Hunter Boots to the Rescue

image

This outfit was clutch for the last wedding I photographed in San Francisco with Emily Scott.  Literally from the moment we drove up to the Bride’s house until we left the reception it was RAINING.  Not misting but pretty much pouring buckets, and need I remind you that it is winter?  My hunter boots were one of those purchases that I was not so sure about because of the price, but over and over again they have come through to shining victory for me!

Blazer:  Zara

Top:  Similar (Zara)

Skirt:  Anthropologie

Tights:  H&M

Infinity Scarf:  Handmade by a friend find one Similar

Boots:  Nordstrom’s

OUTFIT: Holiday Parties

It’s that time of year when we get to bust out our Party Dresses for those annual Holiday/Christmas parties that our friends, families, work, etc. host.

Holiday parties is the time when we women photographers actually can wear super high and uncomfortable heels, bright colors, and short-er hems because we know it’ll only be a few hours and we know we’re not having to blend into the background  at a shoot.   Emily and I were chatting, and we both just wish we had super fancy lives that we could wear fun one-of-a-kind party outfits everyday.  Either that or be on the show Gossip Girl.  I’ll take either.

Enjoy our Christmas outfits.  Which one is your favorite?  

Miss Emily Scott a.k.a Em the Gem

image

Noteable Pieces from Emily’s Look:  Dress:  Thrift Store $5.  I cannot EVER get over this fact.  Necklace:  Kate Spade, Shoes:  Christian Louboutin

image

Noteable Pieces from My Look:  Gold Vintage Dress and Bow Bracelet:  JCrew; Belt:  Thrift Store; Tights + Earrings H&M; Shoes:  ColeHaan

OUTFIT: Blazers + Chinos

Fall is my favorite time of the year for fashion.  I love browns, blues, greens, and warm colors and I can wear them all the time in the fall.  This outfit is not only a go-to for shooting, but even in my everyday life.  The chinos are a little casual, however I think my blazer and red lipstick makes it a little more fancy.  This look is clean, classic, and the 31 Bits necklace adds that boho flare so I feel as though I’m staying true to my brand all in all!

image

image

Photo by:  Sarah Shreves

Blazer: Zara (this is my go-to place for blazers!); Top: Forever 21 (old); Pants: JCrew; Belt: No Rest for Bridget; Shoes: Tory Burch; Necklace: 31 Bits