Things I Bought That I Love highlights the (hopefully) rare, carefully considered new purchases that spark joy in this aspiring minimalist.
My style has changed a lot since we KonMari'd our condo and I stopped posting outfits. It's more casual, streamlined, neutrals-heavy—and I'm almost always wearing denim. With denim playing such a crucial role in my everyday looks, it seems inevitable that I would be replacing and adding a few basics to give my spring/summer wardrobe much more mileage.
Old Navy is pretty hit-and-miss, but the thrill of finding a gem at a great price keeps me coming back. These denim boyfriend shorts (
$26.94 on sale now for $21.50) are one such find—and, if you can believe it, they're also my first ever pair of denim shorts. The boyfriend fit is relaxed yet flattering; the light blue wash and slight distressing give these a worn-in, summery vibe; and the 3.5" rise provides coverage but still flatters short legs. I've already worn these on weekends with Breton stripes and loose-knit sweaters and Birkenstocks on some of Vancouver's warmer spring days. I'm already looking forward to working them into many more summer looks.
I had to go much more high-end for my second denim purchase, white jeans, which I've been searching for on and off for the last two years. As soon as I got over the fear of stains enough to want a pair (very logical considering how often I splash/drop/spill while eating), there was the frustration of actually having to shop for them. They had to be well-fitting, not see-through, and they had to flatter and elongate my relatively thick legs.
A tall order indeed, but AG 'The Prima' cigarette jeans ($235) ticks all the boxes. The mid-rise is just right and the denim feels thicker than other white jeans I've tried, which means they won't cling and highlight lumpy bits. I got mine at Nordstrom, where I sized up for a loose straight leg fit rather than a skinny one, and took advantage of the in-house alteration service for free hemming.
As much as I want to be one of those "Buy less, choose well" minimalists who hangs on to the same denim pieces for 5+ years, the fact that my body is changing—a combination of a slowing metabolism in my 30s and building muscle through more exercise—has meant this is sometimes an impossibility. I can still wear the same jeans I wore 3 years ago, but this spring I found that the bulk of my jackets and coats were suddenly a very tight squeeze across the chest and shoulders. And as much as I wanted to hang on to last year's denim jacket, I finally had to call it quits when I tried to tie my shoes one day and the simple act of bending towards my toes made my arms and shoulders feel like I was in a strait jacket.
A good minimalist would try to see if she could do without before plunging ahead and buying a replacement. I tried, I really did, but I missed having that layering piece for the brisk days that was a jacket, not a cardigan, and that was versatile enough to go with everything. So I picked up the Banana Republic distressed denim jacket ($124). The petites sizing is just right in terms of sleeve and jacket length. I went up two sizes so it'd feel roomy and comfortable enough through the shoulders if I wanted to layer it over a sweater. Despite the larger size, the jacket is close-cut enough through the torso to look nonchalant, not sloppy, with just a tee.
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