Happy Wednesday, ladies! The week is moving quickly, just as the year is moving quickly. (Can you believe June is right around the corner?) The weather here in Athens has been up and down. We went through a hot spell, but now we've been flirting with the 70s this week. Such a good time to talk about how to dress the Spring-to-Summer transition.
During this transition, it's not uncommon to have to plan for daily temperature changes. Whether those changes are from morning-to-day or day-to-night---layering is the solution. And depending on how much time you spend jumping indoors to out, it's not uncommon to have to bring a sweater to work, even in July. Today's OOTD is great inspiration on how to dress the Spring-to-Summer transition.
Today's featured items are a mock neck sweater from Ann Taylor and a cardigan from Halogen
The outfit is modeled, and I pulled together 2 alternates
The outfit is shoppable via a text or image widget
Today's featured item is a ribbed mock neck sweater shell from Ann Taylor paired with white denim from Mother. The sleeveless shell can easily be paired with shorts or a skirt. And for transition weather, it works perfectly well under a blazer or a lightweight utility or field jacket.
The lightweight cardigan is the perfect third layer for those 60 to low 70s days or indoor air conditioning. It also looks great with a dress! And because the cardigan is neutral, not only does it work with a matching top, but if you're feeling adventurous, it would work great with a pop of red or orange.
Hey, hey! It’s Friday, ladies, which means it’s time to kick off the weekend with a delicious recipe and cocktail. Of course, my favorite sidekick, Oscar is on deck and I’m sporting a laid-back outfit that’s perfect for a chilly Spring day. (Although simple, today's appetizer may be better than Clinton Kelly's shrimp appetizer, maybe.)
Can you believe our temps have bounced from 39 degrees to 75ish in the course of a week? Mother Nature can be a fickle creature this time of year. Lightweight sweaters and third layers come in handy! Rest assured I have one or the other on hand.
Today's featured item is a pair of boyfriend jeans from Kut from the Kloth
The jeans are modeled
The entire outfit is shoppable via a text or image widget
I've got a recipe for an Italian Greyhound and Avacado cucumber shrimp bites
This Spring I’ve been testing new denim silhouettes. The trend for 2022 is a looser fit and I can’t say I’m disappointed. I’ve always loved the slouchy fit of boyfriend jeans so I was thrilled to stumble upon this pair from Kut from the Kloth available at Nordstrom.
1 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped, plus more for garnish
1 tsp paprika
½ tsp cayenne pepper
½ tsp sea salt
¼ tsp black pepper
2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
¼ tsp salt
1 tbsp lime juice, plus more to squeeze over finished appetizers
1 English Cucumber, sliced
How to make Cajun Shrimp
Place shrimp in a large mixing bowl and pat dry with paper towels. Add minced garlic, 1 Tbsp cilantro, 1 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp black pepper, and 1 Tbsp olive oil. Stir well to combine.
Heat a large heavy pan over medium/high heat with 1 Tbsp olive oil. Once oil is hot, add shrimp in a single layer and sauté 2 min per side or until cooked through
How to make the avocado spread
Heat a large heavy pan over medium/high heat with 1 Tbsp olive oil. Once oil is hot, add shrimp in a single layer and sauté 2 min per side or until cooked through.
In a small bowl, mash together 1 avocado, 1/4 tsp salt and 1 Tbsp lime juice until creamy. Divide the avocado mix over 20-22 cucumber slices.
Squeeze fresh lime juice over the shrimp avocado bites and garnish with more finely chopped cilantro. If not serving right away, cover and refrigerate up to 4 hours before serving.
In Case You Missed It
Yesterday, I showed you a variety of different dresses, and additionally, different ways to style each. Click the title or image below to read the article.
I love Spring fashion. From the colors to the sweaters to the accessories—there are so many fun options during transition seasons. But if I had to pick one—the most essential Spring clothing—it would be the denim jacket. Perfect for layering, lightweight, and easy to carry, a good jean jacket goes with just about anything and everything. Truly classic, truly flexible, and worth every dollar. Today, I’ve got another roundup for you—a trip through my recent archives.
Most essential Spring clothing
Today, I’ve put together 5 different outfits all featuring a denim jacket. I pulled the outfits from:
The idea, here, is fashion inspiration—hopefully, one or two items will inspire you to pull out your denim jacket and try something new. And if you’re in the market for a new jean jacket, scroll to the end of the post. I’ve rounded up a little more than 10 different jean jackets you might be interested in.
A graphic tee & matching denim
The first outfit is denim-on-denim. (Yup, it can be done, even with the same basic wash.) I broke up the monochromaticity with a color pop. I went with red(s), but you could do anything here, really. Yellow, orange, green, purple—it’s totally up to you. (I loved the graphic tee from yesterday’s post, I had to feature it again.)
Love, love, love gingham. And while I think most of us wear gingham button-downs, how fun are gingham pants? A medium-to-dark wash jacket goes best in my opinion, but I could imagine putting darling outfits together with a light wash one.
The next outfit pairs a denim jacket with a sweater/pant combo. We’re still having days in the 60s, so layering is a must. I went with a blue combo for my sweater and pant pairing. You could stick with neutrals are experiment with color as I did. Just have fun with it!
Love stripes for Spring. Truly classic. For this outfit, I paired the cutest striped, collared sweater with a pair of white denim. Very few things say “Spring” more than white denim, and they work perfectly with a jean jacket in any wash.
Loving this midi skirt from Talbots. Simple and elegant, it works incredibly well with a denim jacket. I kept things simple with a white popover, as I really wanted to highlight the skirt/jacket pairing. Swap the popover for a button-down or tee. You can’t go wrong.
What a week! It’s been a big week over here on the blog to say the least. Yesterday, we introduced our newest regular contributor: my daughter-in-law, Kelly Djalali. I cannot thank you enough for the warm reception you gave her. It meant the world. We’re both extremely excited for what’s to come, and we hope you are too. In celebration, we thought we’d do something fun today: a joint Fridays with Oscar. Super simple: I’m responsible for the drinks, and Kelly’s making the appetizer. Plus, we’ve both got super fun outfits for you. I’m sporting Oprah’s favorite AYR shirt, and Kelly’s featuring a pair of woven loafers I think you’re going to love.
Oprah’s favorite AYR shirt
My outfit could not be simpler. I’ve paired this button-down, striped shirt (AYR, Oprah’s Favorite Things) with a pair of raw hem jeans (Nordstrom). The shirt is a bit large—looking for that oversized, comfy, casual look perfect for Fridays. But it you want a more tailored look size down one size. Throw on a pair of sandals (Talbots), and you’re headed straight into the weekend.
Kelly and I both share a love of Aperol. And anyone who follows Fridays with Oscar regularly knows it’s one of my go-tos. Today, I’m sharing my recipe for an Intro to Aperol. Cheers to the weekend, ladies!
One of the big advantages of bringing Kelly on to SAACA is that she will get to share wonderful recipes with us. For those that don’t know, Kelly runs a food blog: Djalali Cooks. Thankfully, she’s agreed to revive her Kelly’s Kitchen column over here on the blog, so stay tuned for some yummy, easy-to-follow dishes. Today, she’s cooking up mushroom and goat cheese crostini.
Preheat broiler with a rack placed in the middle position.
In a large pan, over medium-high heat, sauté mushrooms with 1/4 cup water. Stir occasionally and cook until water is completely evaporated.
Drizzle olive oil over mushrooms in the pan and add the shallot slices to the pan.
Season with kosher salt and black pepper.
Continue sautéing, stirring occasionally until the mushrooms begin to develop a little browning and the shallots are softened and lightly translucent.
Stir all but about 2 teaspoons of the chopped parsley into the cooked mushrooms and remove from heat.
Arrange baguette slices on a large sheet pan. Drizzle olive oil over the bread slices and place on the center rack in the oven. Lightly toast the bread slices under the broiler, then flip the slices to lightly toast the other side.
When the bread slices are lightly toasted pull them from the oven.
Use a knife to spread goat cheese on each slice of toasted bread.
Top each slice of bread with about 1.5 tablespoons of the mushroom mixture, adding more or less to each slice, using up all of the mushroom mixture.
Place the cheese and mushroom-topped crostini on a serving plate and drizzle with balsamic vinegar.
Sprinkle the remaining chopped parsley over the tops as garnish.
Shop Kelly’s outfit (click below)
Just the two of us
March is over, and April is just beginning. From Kelly, Oscar, and myself, we’re wishing you an absolutely wonderful weekend!
On Tuesdays, Kelly will be posting an entry to our Daily Looks feed. She’ll post an OOTD and you can shop those outfits easily through the shop widget below the photo. Being of a smaller stature, at 5 feet tall and 105 pounds, Kelly will create fresh looks with a focus on classic style for petites.
Thursday: Featured post
On Thursdays, Kelly will be contributing a full-length fashion-related post. Whether she’s modeling outfits or giving you tips on how to build her capsule wardrobes, you can expect the same great content you’ve come to expect from SAACA.
Saturdays: Kelly’s Kitchen
Kelly will be reviving her Kelly’s Kitchencolumn on Saturdays. Each week, you can expect a delicious, easy-to-follow recipe.
Happy Friday, gang! Another week has come and gone, and so has my beach getaway to Cancún, Mexico. It was a relaxing trip filled with blue skies, sunshine, and a white sandy beach that stretched for miles. Margaritas on the rocks, guacamole, and chips, plus a good beach read are all that’s necessary to keep this girl happy. I am truly my mother’s daughter in so many ways. Now it’s time to switch gears and get back to work. I’ve got a fun one for you today: how to make a charcuterie board.
While I was gone, my garage door was finally installed! Hooray! It’s beautiful. Next up is a paint job outside. Yes, the house is getting a facelift, and I finally decided to paint the brick! The prep work started while I was in Mexico; barring rain, I will have a brand spanking fresh coat of paint (or two) by the end of next week. Black gutters were installed in February, so along with a new garage door and paint job, my 70s ranch will look fresh and modern. Houses need to keep up with the times just like us!
Classic blouse & denim
Today’s outfit is just as simple to throw together as the charcuterie tray! It’s a simple style uniform for spring and summer: denim, tee or blouse, and sandals. When spring rolls into town the rinse of my denim gets lighter.
Yes, it visually adds pounds but I’m totally okay with putting FUN into my wardrobe and nothing says summer than a pair of light rinse denim from Ann Taylor. Y’all know my love of white blouses so it was time to slip into a short sleeve version of this iconic closet staple from J.Crew (old, similar here and here). Add a pair of white sandals from Tory Burch and this outfit is in the bag.
Today’s menu couldn’t be easier or more perfect for a beautiful spring day. Wine and cheese, anyone? A charcuterie board is so easy to put together especially last minute when friends and family drop by. There is nothing better than sitting on my screen porch with a glass of wi e in hand and good company.
How to make a charcuterie board
Today, I chose a savory board for my theme that includes one hard and one soft cheese. I added nuts, cured meats, pickled vegetables, olives, sweet fig jam, and a crusty baguette. So easy, right?
I have a tried and true method to pull together a platter in no time flat! And what’s easier than uncorking a bottle of red and white wine? I always like to keep one of each on hand. So come join Oscar and me, and Ollie whose always in the background.
Make sure to catch up on our DAILY LOOK. We post a dedicated photo to our daily outfit every Wednesday-Sunday. And you can shop those outfits easily through the shop the widget below the picture.
Happy Thursday, ladies! Travel week is wrapping up, and I’m heading back home to Georgia from Mexico today. What a wonderful trip. And I was so glad to be able to share it with you. In case you missed anything, I’ve got links at the end of this post. So make sure to check them out. We’re resuming normal scheduling, today, and featuring one of my favorite items this Spring: a women’s faux leather jacket from Scoop.
We’ve featured this jacket a few weeks ago paired with a skirt, shown below. It was such a hit, that I wanted to show you another way to style it. So, we’ve got a sort of 2-for-1 today: 2 ways to style the same moto-jacket.
I’m loving stripes this Spring. They create visual interest to any outfit, really, and today, I’ve matched my stripes with the jacket. Combined with my red driving mocs, this is truly on-trend for Spring 2022.
Driving mocs didn’t make my 5 trending Spring shoes this year. That’s because, in a lot of ways, driving mocs are trend-proof. They’re such classics, they’re always on-trend. This pair is from Rothy’s, and if red isn’t your style, don’t worry. They’ve got this shoe in a variety of different colors.
Make sure to catch up on our DAILY LOOK. We post a dedicated photo to our daily outfit every Wednesday-Sunday. And you can shop those outfits easily through the shop the widget below the picture.
A statement on world events
The weather in Georgia has been flirting with springtime temps, so it’s time to think about my spring wardrobe. I can’t believe the first day of spring is two weeks away. While our moods may be bright with the infusion of sunshine and blue skies that spring brings, dark clouds are swirling in other parts of the world.
Style at a Certain Age has made it a practice to focus on aging with grace, strength, and beauty and will continue to do so in the coming weeks and months. That’s the purpose of this platform, not religion nor politics—although I have my viewpoints with both.
But I am very much aware of world events that have transpired this past week and have watched the devastation unfold. Horrifyingly, wars have been breaking out for thousands of years, wreaking havoc on the daily lives of innocent men, women, and children. It’s heartbreaking to watch refugees pack their lives in small bags and flee for their lives, not knowing what will come to pass. In the twentieth century, alone, two World Wars were fought with the hope of ending future wars. But it didn’t come to pass.
My late husband’s family lost everything in the 70s when they fled Iran to start a new life in America.
I grew up with the nightly news reporting the casualties of the Vietnam War. The Gulf War broke out when I was a young mother, and the Iraq War followed on its heels. Then there was the Afghanistan War…
Please know that my heart aches for all the innocent men, women, and children caught in the crossfire of the latest conflict in Ukraine. My hope and my prayers are for peace.
Talbots Spring collection
If it’s spring, then it’s time to lighten and brighten my wardrobe. What better way to do just that than with a nautical vibe from the Talbots Spring collection. Shades of navy and white look crisp and clean and perfect for a warm spring day. I couldn’t resist this pair of white wide-leg denim from Talbots (fit TTS—I’m wearing a size 8 for reference) and striped funnel neck top (I’m wearing a size medium for reference) that’s helping me feel a bit nauti.
But if you want to add a pop of color certain to brighten your day and daresay your mood, then pick a color of your liking. Me? I’m a firm believer every woman should own a pair of red shoes (old, similar here,here, and here), so I chose red as my accent color. In for a penny in for a pound, as my mother liked to say, so I added a red handbag (old, similar here, here, and here) into the mix.
We just posted a new DAILY LOOK, so make sure to check it out. Daily Looks is a really simple feature: a dedicated photo feed of my daily outfits. And you can shop those outfits easily through the shop the widget below the picture.
Welcome to our first preview guide of the year: 2022 denim trends that you will love (and potentially hate). But don’t worry, that’s the great thing about fashion. If you love something, wear it; if not, don’t. Today, we’re gonna take a look at 5 denim styles that are in this year. They are:
patchwork (or embellished);
boyfriend & baggy;
flared & bootcut;
For each style of jeans, I put together an outfit you can shop, similar to our new Daily Looks. In addition, I’ve gone through the archives and found different ways you can style each pair.
Definitive denim guide (excerpts)
Like any fashion trend: the 2022 ones will come and they may go. But what remains constant is how to shop denim. That doesn’t change. In case you missed it, we’ve put together a definitive denim guide over here on the blog. Below I pulled out, and am reprinting some useful tips that always apply when shopping jeans.
Fit & feel
Nothing is more important than the fit and feel of a pair of jeans. And you’re never going to know how something fits or feels without a) trying it on and b) having several points of reference. I can’t recommend enough carving out an afternoon, physically going to a store like Gap or Nordstrom, and working with one of their stylists to try on a full range of jeans. They’re there to help! They’ll walk you through the full spectrum of what’s available to give you that reference point.
When you’re trying on jeans, focus on how they fit on your waist. Always ask yourself the question, “Does the jean sit on the waist where it is supposed to sit?” Also, focus on the length of the jeans. Ask yourself the question, “Are these jeans going to drag given the shoes you currently have in your closet?” And remember this one crucial fact worth pointing out again and again: just because you’re a size 6 in brand X does not mean you’re a size 6 in brand Y.
All well and good. But what about those of us who are shopping exclusively online? Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. Below, I’ve linked to some of my favorite denim retailers, including their online denim guide.
Roughly speaking, the “wash” of a jean refers to the extent to which a pair of denim has undergone a washing and treatment process prior to sale. The washing and treatment process affects the color and softness of denim.
Below, I’ve put together a scale of various washes beginning with “raw denim” and ending with “bleach wash.” Raw denim is very stiff, dark and has not been washed to soften and remove dye, whereas bleach-washed denim is very soft and light, as most of the dye has been stripped away. Most of us are probably going to stick in the rinse-to-light wash region of the below scale, but some of us may deviate to either end of the spectrum.
Jeans don’t exist in isolation. You’re going to pair them with what you currently have in your wardrobe. It’s pointless to buy a pair of jeans that don’t work with a single top or single pair of shoes you currently own. Always have a game plan. When you are looking to buy a pair of denim, a good rule of thumb is this: have at least two tops and two pairs of shoes that the jeans you’re eyeing actually go with. That will give you the flexibility and versatility to successfully integrate a new pair of denim into your closet.
Proportionality based on use
If you have ten pairs of jeans, it usually doesn’t make sense for 8 of them to be white if you only wear white jeans one month out of the year. Are your go-to jeans boot cut, but of your five pairs of jeans, only 1 of them is actually boot cut? Seems obvious, but it’s worth pointing out: a) know what denim you love, b) know what denim you actually wear in practice, and c) base the proportionality of your denim on (a) and (b). a + b = c.
2022 denim trends
Just when you got used to high-rise jeans, low-rise jeans are back in a big way. I featured them heavily between 2016-17 and have begun reincorporating them into my wardrobe this winter. Low-rise jeans or “low-cut jeans” sit low on the hips and a few inches above the navel.
Patchwork jeans were definitely a DIY, 70s thing. Take a couple of pairs of denim (or any garment) and patchwork a new pair of jeans. I featured patchwork jeans heavily back in 2018—even on my 60th birthday!
OOTD. Today’s OOTD is comfy-casual. My jeans are old but you can find similar from Ralph Lauren. I love patchwork jeans because they give you so many highlights to pick up with your top. I went with a pink mock-neck sweater from Ann Taylor) and a pair of platform sneakers.
True-blue baggy—or barrel—jeans are in this year. (Not quite the same as sizing up Levis 501s to get that 90s Seattle look.) If you’re not into that look, you can certainly stick with boyfriend or girlfriend-style jeans. But I’ve been having a lot of fun styling my barrel-fit ones.
Flared and bootcut are back to the point where I’m regularly seeing bellbottoms on the streets of Athens. What I love about this particular style is that there is a spectrum of flare. Simple bootcut all the way to flower power, it’s easy to find and style a jean you’re comfortable with.
Ahh, the denim skirt. It never really goes out of style, does it? It’s certainly one of my all-time favorites, and I’ve featured it heavily on the blog since its inception.
OOTD. Classic look here. I’ve paired an Everlane skirt (limited sizes similar here, here, and here) with a striped sweater and bomber jacket. (Gotta be honest with you, I love any excuse to pull out a bomber jacket.)
Today week, we’re going to deep-dive into the essential jackets you should have in your wardrobe:
puffer vests; and
(True, scarves aren’t jackets, but I couldn’t resist.). The continued purpose of this column is simple: we’re here to help you establish a wardrobe that’s built on top of the basics. Think of it as building the backbone of your wardrobe.
We’ll dig down into each category, and I’ll give you examples of essential trench coats, for example. The way to read this post is simple: in each section, I’ve given you photos of different ways I’ve styled that coat, with an assortment of links from tried and true retailers to shop the item. So let’s get started: here are the most essential jackets any woman should have in their wardrobe.
The most versatile jacket you can own, you can wear a jean jacket in any season. They’re the perfect transition-weather coat. Wear them with:
Pair them with:
And layer them with other coats. It’s hard to think of something a denim jacket does not go with. Get one in a classic wash, or pick one up in yellow, red, or orange. You probably don’t need another jean jacket in your wardrobe, but then again, you just might. Some retailers that consistently stock denim jackets:
Field jackets, or military-style jackets, are generally multi-pocketed. Traditionally olive (or drab) green, long-time readers will know of my love for the quilted field jacket. The first quilted jacket came into existence in the mid-’60’s thanks to an American living in England. Mr. Guylas introduced a quilted vest in a timeless palette of olive and navy for hunting expeditions. Wear a field jacket with:
And make sure to give them a pop of color with a colorful sweater or button-down. Make sure to check out:
Add a little spice to your wardrobe with a classic leather moto jacket. Perfect with your favorite pair of denim and a pair of Frye boots, the leather jacket is a staple in any classic wardrobe. But don’t be afraid to go modern chic with a dress and heels. Nordstrom always has an excellent selection of women’s leather jackets.
Burberry reigns supreme when it comes to a khaki trench. Historians claim Thomas Burberry invented gabardine fabric in 1879. In 1901 he designed and submitted an Army Officer’s raincoat to the United Kingdom War Office, and so the military trench began.
I absolutely love trenches and wear them in khaki, but also keep a lookout for fun prints. Pair them with a sweater and denim for a classic preppy look. Or, if you want to class things up a bit, dress them up with your favorite evening dress and a pair of strappy heels. You can never go wrong with Burberry for a classic trench, but retailers like J.Crew have more cost-effective options.
If the north winds are blowing in your neck of the woods, then a wool overcoat is a must. This is the coat that you can throw over your jeans, trousers, skirts, and even dresses. A wool overcoat is one of the hardest-working items in your closet if you live in a climate that faces freezing temps and snow all the way through March. Choose a classic style in a flattering neutral shade, shoulders that fit well, and mid-size lapels.
Practical and warm, the puffer vest is a casual staple of my wardrobe. Ranging in different types of colors, they come plain or can be adorned with, say, faux fur. Puffer vests are perfect transition-weather outerwear like denim jackets and really shine in the fall. I mostly lawyer them with sweaters, but they really shine with a crisp, white button-down. Orvis and Northface are always well-stocked with puffer vests and jackets.
And then there are scarves. I absolutely love scarves because they are literally the easiest way to inject color and visualize interest into your wardrobe. Scarves come in every shape and size, from a cashmere scarf to quilted merino wool. Simple advice when buying a scarf: have fun. Talbots and Ann Taylor are always my go-to for scarves.