29 March 2011

To Show You What's Behind the Curtain

Like most personal style bloggers, I sift through dozens of pictures before each outfit post to find the chosen few that are worthy of sharing with you, my bloggy community.  (wait we ALL do this, right?)  I pour over each image agonizing (that might be a bit dramatic) whether or not it will make the cut.  There's cropping and tuning and the occasional retouch all to ensure that the clothes and I look our best.

Well, today's post is going to blow all that work out of the water.  What I have for you (for only the 2nd time in Leaving the House in THIS?!? history) is a batch of unedited outtakes.  Every so often, a picture is so awesomely BAD I stick it in a little folder entitled "bloopers." I keep that folder around for the days I'm getting a little too big for my britches.  It ensures that I remain humble.  

Today, I share a few of those gems with you.
Consider it a Giveaway where EVERYBODY wins!



Occasionally after smiling for 20 something pictures, my face starts to look plastic.  This is me trying to relax the muscles in my face so I don't look weird.  Mission accomplished.



Oh, wait, you wanted me IN the picture? My bad.

"Snow Diva"


Apparently winter weather makes me bossy!

"Just Plain Unattractive"


This is my attempt at "blue steel." To me it looks a bit more like "something smells really bad."

"Not so AUTO Focus"


Move on, this one makes you dizzy if you stare at it too long.

"Narrow Escape"


BLOGGER EATING SHRUB!!! Man, I barely got out of that photo session alive...



Enough. Said.

Favorites? Anyone?

28 March 2011

The Muse Project - Volume 4

Remember back here, when I wondered how I had stumbled onto my last muse, Caitlin? Well, Emily sweetly reminded me that I discovered Caitlin's blog through her blog Ruby Slipper Journeys!!!! Well, duh. That makes total and perfect sense because Emily is one stylish lady herself. Of course she would introduce to me to other stylish ladies! It got me thinking, why haven't I featured Emily in my Muse Project? The answer was, "Gosh, I just don't know." Today I change that.

Emily is a writer, a world traveler and fashion forward blogger. Not only do I visit Ruby Slipper Journeys to beg, borrow and steal from her eclectic and feminine stylings, I'm also curious where her pictures will be taken. You never know where she'll be next!! I have to admit, I've been known to live vicariously through her travels.

Emily is not one to shy away from color and that absolutely inspires me. I love her collection of beautiful brights. She styles vintage pieces with ease and always looks fresh and fun. Emily has a way of putting an outfit together that's feminine and flirty but completely practical and appropriate for real life.
Thankfully she agreed to answer a few questions. Here's what she had to say:

Q: What motivated the creation of Ruby Slipper Journeys?
A: I had just moved to Mexico for six months, I was a bit bored, I didn't think it was worth working for very little money for such a short amount of time so I was writing a book instead... and obviously I needed a way to procrastinate! I'd only discovered personal style blogs a few months before, and it seemed like fun, a creative outlet, a way to maximize my small suitcase and get a bit more techy all in one.

Q: With so many personal style bloggers around the Internet there's never a shortage of inspiration to be found. Which style blogs do you find most inspirational? Any "hidden" gems you'd be willing to share?
A: I read a ridiculous number of blogs, and the "most inspirational" ones are always changing depending on the season and how I feel about fashion. At the moment I'm loving two opposite extremes, Liebemarlene for being 100% true to a very simple but pretty style all the time, and The Dainty Squid for a rioutous rainbow of colour and awesomely cute animal pictures. And I'm also loving Idée Géniale at the moment which I guess fits somewhere in the middle.

Some "hidden gems" I'm recently loving are Lion Heart Vintage and Tipa Tipa.

Q: How have your globetrotting influenced your sense of style?
A: By limiting how much stuff I can accumulate--or ensuring I have to pay loads of money and throw my back out trying to get it home. Bah! (Can you tell I'm grumpily contemplating a move)? On a more positive note, I would say that living in other countries expands your ideas of "normal" clothes for any given activity. For instance, in Canada, cyclists are usually all kitted out in sports clothes, whereas in Europe it's quite normal to ride in a pretty dress. I've probably become dressier on the whole as a result of living abroad.  You realize that other cultures really haven't embraced the culture of sweatpants the way North Americans have!

Q: What's the best piece of advice you've ever received?
A: Oh dear. My best friend's mom, who's from Peru, once told me "Never marry a Latin." I never did, but after a few "entanglements" I can see why that might have been good advice!

Q: Congratulations! You've just won a totally fictional, all expense paid, month long trip to the destination of your choice. The only catch is that you'll have to bring everything you plan to wear in a backpack. Where would you go and what are some of things you would pack?
A: I would go to Berlin, which is a city I've always longed to live in and never even visited. Luckily, I think they're pretty cool and laid back there, so I'd take a couple of dresses (black and white), some yellow sandals, a few slouchy cardigans and some black lace up ankle boots. And a straw hat. And looking back at that list, I've realized that I don't own any of those things, and that's why style blogging is pretty bad for people on a budget! However, this "totally fictional" holiday sounds like fun, so I may need to plan for one!

Thank you so much, Emily, for willingly participating in the Muse Project!
More importantly though, thank you for your fearless style and fabulous blog.

Have you checked out Ruby Slipper Journeys yet?

27 March 2011

New in My Closet

On Friday, six girlfriends and I spent three hours shopping in our brand new Forever 21 finally.  We were celebrating a birthday and getting a little bit of retail therapy together.  It was a complete and total blast. But even with all that time, I still feel like I haven't gotten my fill of the enormous new store.  I plan to spend a little bit of time there to tomorrow on my own... I tend to be a more productive shopper when I'm shopping solo.  But there's no way I'll have near the fun I had with my girlies on Friday.

Here's what I brought home.

Forever21 Bed of Florals Top

I found this top in taupe, and plan to tie the sash in much less of a bow-in-my-belly-button kind of way.

Forever21 Peacock Teardrop Earrings

I had to get on the peacock bandwagon with these lovelies.

Forever21 Shimmery Beaded Top

I actually bought this top in "nude" which is an ultra pale pink.  It's beautiful but it might get returned because I'm not sure it works the rest of my closet.

In other news... da, de, da, da, da, daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.
And the winner is:

Congratulations, Olivia!

Be sure to check out Miss Olivia's fantastic Fashion Wednesday Feature!  Who knows, you may see the prize featured around there sometime soon??

22 March 2011

To Play Paper Dolls Again

Happy Paper Doll Tuesday!!

I threw my striped skirt into the mix and here's how the whole thing turned out:


Paper Doll Project
When it comes to playing paper dolls, I got very, very lucky.
I was paired up with Miss Lisa of Sweet Laundry Loves.
Not only was she was full of lots of amazing ideas, she gave me multiple options and was super sweet and complimentary throughout the process.


Even with all the options she gave me, I still went off book.
Here's my excuse: It was nearly 80 degrees here yesterday and final look we chose just would have been WAY, WAY, way too warm.
So, instead I went with an earlier idea.

Sorry to not stick with the plan, Lisa.  
But, I'm loving this blue top with my skirt. It was much more temperature appropriate.  Thanks for picking it out!


It's that weird time of year where it's too warm to wear tights but my legs are too butt white not to.
Enter gray tights simply being worn to protect your eyes from temporary blindness.


Now, before you hurry over to Miss Vinyl Ahoy to see all the other paper doll bloggers, you must first pay a visit to Sweet Laundry Loves and see how beautiful my partner is looking.
I was incredibly excited when I found out that she chose a shirt dress to be styled.  I just so happen to have a colorful shirt dress on "must have for spring" shopping list.  And after seeing how cute she's looking, I'm adding a pair of nerd glasses to the list too!

What's on YOUR "must have for spring" shopping list?

18 March 2011

To Model The Giveaway Goods

After the bloggy blah that settled in during the late stages of this last 30x30, I've decided to take a bit of an outfit-post hiatus.


But, I thought I'd leave you with one last post (you're welcome) mainly because I've got something to give away!

Yellow Striped T (Old Navy); Lilac Cardi (Old Navy)
Denim Mini (Express); White Knee Socks (Target)
Boots (Victoria's Secret); Scarf (Courtesy of The Vintage Scarf)
Rhinestone Flower Earrings (gifted)

When The Vintage Scarf offered to provide one of their scarves for me test drive and then give to you, I was very flattered and very grateful.
I was a bit worried though when I wasn't given the chance to choose the scarf for myself.  EEEKKK!!!
What if they sent me something that I couldn't style?


As you can imagine, I was thrilled when this adorable, polka dotted little number arrived in my mailbox.  Its yellow, purple and navy dots were exactly what I needed to accessorize my new yellow striped Tshirt. Perfect.

Want to make it yours?


To Qualify:
You must be a follower of Leaving The House in THIS?!?
You must visit The Vintage Scarf and report back with your favorite scarf


I'm going to be honest with you.  I would love to keep this pretty pretty for myself.
But, I promise to give it to one of you lucky readers next Friday, March 25th. 

On an unrelated note: 
What do you think, how old is too old for a mini skirt??

17 March 2011

To Show Off my Irish"ness"

Yesterday, Helena over at A Diary of a Lovely posted what she might find if she opened up her "Ideal Closet."  I simply loved the idea. So, I've done what we bloggers do and paid homage to her brilliance by creating my own take on her Ideal Closet concept.  
{Helena, I hope you are flattered and not offended by my imitation of your ultra creative post!!!}

If I were to open my ideal closet on this greenest of all days, here is what I would find:

Please, oh please tell me you aren't already tired of this green striped Libertine dress!!  It has been on my mind  (define obsessively for me, just in case...) lately.  I think it would be perfectly paired with a school boy-esque blazer like this one from Topshop.  Finish it off with these subtly sexy navy lace up platforms, "mod dot" tights to fight the Spring chill and the most Irish inspired dainty necklace and I'm ready to celebrate - pinch free!!

Best part?  There's no cinched waist so I can eat as much corned beef and cabbage as I'd like! 

Will you be sporting the green this St. Patty's Day?

15 March 2011

To Close it Up

There you have it and there you are.
{If you're super duper observant, you've already noticed that number 4 is missing.  Read HERE to remember why}

It is no secret that I am incredibly glad to be finished with this challenge.  I've mentioned before that I was less than enthused with my 30 pieces as I got into the mixing.  However, looking back at the full, finished catalog of outfits, I'm pleased with how the whole deal turned out.

This time I ended up wearing a bunch of outfits (using these items of course) that didn't get photographed.  If I ever decide to participate in another 30x30 challenge, I would not do that again.  Because I did, the challenge seemed to (and did) drag on waaaaaaaaaaay longer than it needed to.  In the end it became more of a chore and less of an adventure.  It sort of zapped my creativity.  Eeek! I for one do not ever want blogging to be a chore.  Boo to that idea!

I had aspirations of waxing philosophical in this post, but as I sit here at the keyboard I just kind of want to be finished with this whole thing.  I have indeed learned some lessons (good and bad) about my closet and myself through this challenge.  I still really believe in the 30x30 concept and find Miss Kendi to be a sheer genius with a giant sized brain for conceiving of such a thing.  I'm ultra glad I finished.  But now I am just extremely ready to have some quality time with the rest of my closet... So, if you'll excuse me I'm off to give my other clothes a little attention.