travel week is in full swing. on sunday, i showed you my outfit layouts and gave you some packing tips and tricks. in case you missed it, you can read them here. yesterday, i took you with me on my riverboat cruise to Normandy and Château d’Ételan. you can find that post here. today, i want to build on a theme from sunday’s post, namely how to build an essential travel wardrobe

in that post, i focused on three must-bring item types: i) denim, ii) black pants, and a iii) sweater. today, i’m showcasing 2 out of the 3 items much in the same way as i did yesterday’s post.  specifically, i want to show you how you can reuse elements of one outfit successfully in another (potentially) cutting down on the number of items you pack.  

day outfit

the importance of denim 

denim is one of the hardest-working items in your wardrobe. this is doubly true when you’re traveling. for those of you following the blog this month, i hope you got a chance to check out the definitive guide to denim i put together. you can read that post here.  

cashmere turtleneck dress | blazer | similar turtleneck dress | boyfriend jean | skinny jean | low heeled booties | scarf

the sheer flexibility denim provides when you travel is limitless. as i said sunday, dress them up. dress them down. dress them somewhere in-between. there is no single item more essential to pack than denim.  

cashmere turtleneck dress | blazer | similar turtleneck dress | boyfriend jean | skinny jean | low heeled booties | scarf

here, i’ve paired a cashmere turtleneck dress from Everlane with a blazer from Lafayette 148. blazers make my #4 essential items, and i put together a fall guide to blazers here.   you can match this look with a pair of boyfriend jeans or skinny jeans. either works perfectly. and if distressed jeans aren’t your thing, no problem. just make sure to check out these low heeled booties from Easy Spirit. i’m continuing to try to bring you chic but comfortable footwear, and these booties are just that. since September i’ve partnered with Easy Spirit as a brand ambassador, so please be certain to use code BETH25 for 25% off your purchase through November 2019.

evening outfit

the utility of black pants. 

at some point in your trip abroad, you’re going to spend an evening out. maybe you’ll head into town for a quiet dinner, or maybe you’ll spend the night dancing. black pants work in a variety of evening occasions, no matter what city or country you find yourself in.  and much like denim, they pair nicely with a mixture of tops and outerwear. you’re not going to want to forget them.  

cashmere turtleneck dress | blazer | similar turtleneck dress | faux leather pants | low heeled booties

for my evening wear, i’ve kept the cashmere turtleneck dress, blazer, and low heeled booties. i dropped the scarf and denim, swapping the latter for faux leather pants from Ann Taylor. just like that, i was ready to see an evening concert at the beautiful Château de la Roche-Guyon.

 Château de Chantilly

all right, gang! that’s a wrap for the second entry into my travel diary. like yesterday, i want to leave you with some breathtaking pictures.  these are from Château de Chantilly, and i hope you enjoy them. keep the comments coming! i’m loving hearing all about your recent travels or upcoming travel plans. tell me how you build an essential travel wardrobe in the comments below. 

the following photos were taken on our day trip to Rouen, France.

if you’re a regular here on the blog, you know i’ve been obsessed with blazers this fall. they’re fun, fashionable, and flexible. there are so many ways to mix, match, and mashup blazers with your preexisting wardrobe. invest in a blazer or two this fall, and you’ll be able to refresh large swaths of your closet just like that. blazers pair perfectly with denim, pants, blouses or tees.  you really can’t go wrong.  in case you’re looking for ideas or want to see how i’ve worn a blazer this year, take a look here, here, or here. but to make your life simple, today, i’ve compiled 3 ways to wear a blazer this fall.  

with a hoodie

an easy way to spice up a blazer is to pair it with a hoodie.  just like Goldilocks: not too formal, but not too casual. whether you’re headed to work or out to the movies, this look has you covered.  literally. i’ve compiled this hoodie and this one for some great pairing possibilities.  

j.crew blazer, ann taylor sweater, dolce vita booties

 similar blazer (Nordstrom) 


j.crew blazer, ann taylor sweater, dolce vita booties

when temps drop, i pop on a wool blazer for extra warmth. this is one of my all-time favorites by Nordstrom similar here or here. the short blazer, long hoodie, and longer tunic is a perfect silhouette for a cold winter day. if by chance the thermometer decides to inch up it’s easy enough to shed a layer. 

j.crew blazer, ann taylor sweater, dolce vita booties

with a turtleneck

a sleeveless turtleneck is a timeless classic and a perfect layering piece. nothing says “elegant” quite like it. what’s even better, though, is the flexibility of the sleeveless turtleneck. if the temps decide to warm up on you unexpectedly, as they are prone to here in Athens, just take off peel of your layers and you’re good to go.  

target boyfriend blazer, talbots turtleneck, ann taylor cropped flare denim, nine west sock booties

similar blazer 


this boyfriend blazer from J.Crew is my style crush. love the oversized fit and longer length. it’s the perfect jacket when temps are bouncing from the fifties in the morning to seventies by late afternoon. and i have to admit i’m a sucker for the traditional herringbone pattern. 

target boyfriend blazer, talbots turtleneck, ann taylor cropped flare denim, nine west sock booties

with a t-shirt

when i want to dress chic but comfortable, i chose a pair of high-rise jeans and a graphic tee. graphic tees never go out of style, and there are so many fun ones from all of our favorite designers.  (and don’t forget about consignment shopping for some retro tees as well!)

when i want to dress chic but comfortable, i chose a pair of high-rise jeans and a graphic tee. and it’s worth pointing out just how well graphic tees pair with blazers.  

denim | similar graphic tee here, here, & here blazer similar shoes | similar handbag | similar necklace | similar bracelets



again, i’m going to say it: fall is all about the layering. all about the layering. fall days are warm, and evenings are cool. check out this fun tweed blazer you can grab from Nordstrom’s

all right, gang! that’s another wrap. we’re almost to the weekend. but before you go, tell me how you’re wearing a blazer this fall.  any styling ideas i missed? love the ones i have?  let me know in the comments below. 

if i could go back and give my younger self some advice, it would be this:  be bold, be strong, and don’t be afraid to step outside the mainstream and make your own rules.   after all, how much time did we spend in our youths feeling insecure?  afraid to speak up and voice our opinions?  how many of us were paralyzed by the potentiality of being wrong? struck by the fear of articulating an unpopular position?  how many of us have daughters or granddaughters that are currently struggling with these insecurities?  so let’s all throw on a fall glen plaid jacket and a pair of suede pumps and remember, “be bold and mighty forces will come to your aid.”  

as any woman of a certain age will tell you, age begets wisdom, and wisdom begets confidence.  it’s one of the perks of getting older, really.  and as any woman of a certain age will tell you, none of this can be rushed.  a 42 year old can’t transfer to a 22 year old the wisdom and knowledge a successful, mid-life career change brings with it.  a 64 year old can’t make a 34 year old understand the tears of pain and joy raising three children brings with it. 

but what we—the older generation—can do is this:  we can tell our daughters—our granddaughters— it’s OK to be bold.  it’s OK to be confident.  it’s OK to take risks.  it’s OK to make your own rules in this crazy, mixed up world.  because—and here’s the secret—everyone is makes up their own rules.   and if we, as woman with wisdom, are not afraid to instill confidence in our children, then conversations like this will become the norm.  

you want to leave your job as a lawyer and open up an apothecary?  do it!  

you want to forego college for an apprenticeship as a chef?  i’m behind you 100%!

you think your team at work could improve if they just tried this?  tell them!  

when i was younger & now that i’m stronger

last week, we talked about self-expression through style.  a lot of you reached out to me over my various social channels and told me how over the years you’ve gained the confidence to take fashion risks.  so inspiring!   and as you all know, we’re no strangers to those sorts of risk over here on the blog.  yesterday, we showcased flared jeans, last week a skirt and knee-highs, and a few weeks ago, wide-legged jeans.   

blazer (Ann Taylor)sweater (Everlane) | similar denim (J.Crew) 


but today, i’m showcasing my go-to style:  modern preppy.  it’s a fashion sense i’ve developed over 50 years.  and to me, nothing says “bold” and “confident” more than a blazer and a clean pair of denim.  whether i’m headed to a meeting or just grabbing drinks with my daughter-in-law after work, i trust in the style i’ve worked my entire life to develop.

breaking all the rules & suede pumps

oftentimes, when we think of “breaking the rules”, we think of societal rules imposed on us either implicitly or explicitly.  but sometimes those rules are self-imposed.  whether they be fashion rules, or professional rules, or general how-i-live-my-life rules, it’s always good to step back and reevaluate how and why we do what we do. 

shoes | shoes (similar Ann Talyor) | handbag 1handbag 2 | handbag 3 (similar)


what fashion rules do you live by?  and are they worth breaking? 

fashion confidence with age 

depending on the year; depending on where i’m living; and depending on who i’m with, modern preppy may be “in” or it may be totally “out”.  doesn’t matter to me, though.  it’s my go-to, and i’m sticking to it.  i might spice up my style with frayed denim, a pair of suede pumps (but see also) and a statement bag (but also here and here).  but i’ve been shopping at Ann Taylor and J.Crew for years.

blazer (Ann Taylor)sweater (Everlane) | similar denim (J.Crew) 


alright, gang!  the week is in full swing.  i hope you played hooky yesterday and are fully rejuvenated.  we’re gonna need it, as we’re heading into the holiday season.  now, before you go, let me know in the comment section one piece of advice you’d give to your younger self.  i’m not a big believer in regrets.  but i am a believer in learning, growing, and evolving through the ages.  what words of wisdom do you have for the next generation of women?  


yesterday, i spoke to career women.  i want to continue in that trend and talk today about modern women influencers—women trailblazers.  we’re all familiar with historically great women like Marie Curie and Susan B. Anthony  their contributions to the modern science & medicine and women’s suffrage are profound. but what about (potentially) less-known women like Grace Hopper, who profoundly changed computer programming and STEM more generally.  women have and continue to shape the world each and every day in all domains and industries.  and with each and every day, their stories are coming to the forefront more and more. 

i take it we all have women in our lives—some we know and some we don’t—who have influenced us.  i take it that we all have women in our lives who set an example and showed us that, although scary, we too can venture down less trodden paths.  who are those women for you?  your mother?  sister?  Grace Hopper?  someone else entirely? 

modern women influencers

those of us interested in fashion—and i take it all my readers are—are no doubt familiar with the modern female titans of industry:  Vera Wang, Donna Karan, and the like.  women like these not only shape the way we dress, but oftentimes, the direction of our society more generally as Miranda from The Devil Wears Prada reminds us.  


blazer |sweater | boyfriend jeans | similar belt 

denim is one of the most integral parts of our wardrobe.  and it’s difficult to get right.   this fall, i’ve broken out of comfort zones and (potentially) norms and sported everything from wide-legged jeans to skinny jeans.  however, one of the most versatile pieces of denim to incorporate into your fashion repertoire is the boyfriend jean.  you can wear them lounging at home.  or you can roll them up, throw on a pair of pumps, and head out for cocktails. 

fall blazers 

fall is all about the layering. and one of the best ways to layer is with a blazer. you all know how integral blazers are to my wardrobe.  they’ve been featured heavily on the blog over the years.  (see older posts here, here, and here.)  and they’ve also made several appearances on this month’s fashion flash over on YouTube.  (also see the above video.)  

 i’m sporting a regent blazer from J.Crew.  but i’ve also compiled a list of blazers i’m in love with from Ann Taylor and the like below.   

which one is your favorite?  tweed?  plaid?  a more neutral black? 

blazer |sweater | boyfriend jeans | similar belt 

versatility is one of the keys to any wardrobe with longevity.  blazers are perfect because you can throw them over anything from a tee to a sweater like the one from Nordstrom i’m sporting today.

those shoes! 

shoe 1 | shoe 2 | shoe 3 | similar handbag (similar, high-to-low) 

i’m a big believer in neutrals—blacks, whites, grays, and beiges.  but i’m also a big believer in color pop.  oftentimes, as we get older, we stop wearing a lot of colors and err on the side of neutrals.  but there’s a lot of ways to introduce color into your daily outfits.  i’ve chosen to accentuate my black sweater and blazer with a pair of blue-stripped pumps.  (similar shoes here, here, and here.

all right, gang!  tell me about your influences:  personal, professional, or fashion.  who has been a trailblazer in your life?  are you one?  what ways do you like to leave the beaten path and try something new?   



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