Friday, February 28, 2014

In Them Cut-Off Jeans

"When woman find the right person, they just ... disappear for six months, and then resurface, eyes shiny, and usually six pounds heavier." - How To Be A Woman by Caitlin Moran. 

First of all, if you happen to love clever, witty, intelligent and funny women, you must run - not walk - to get How To Be A Woman. It's a similar vein to Tina Fey's Bossypants or Mindy Kaling's Is Everyone Hanging Out With Me? - part memoir, part essay and a full-on lady who doesn't take (too much) bullshit.

But I digress. This post isn't about one of my favorite books, it's about my favorite pair of shorts. Before I met my boyfriend, I could shimmy into these suckers no problem. But then, well... I disappeared and resurfaced too chubby to wear these. If I had to choose a trade-off, I'd always always choose fat and happy over distressed denim. Luckily though, I don't have to! When I came to Singapore, I picked back up one of my favorite hobbies - swimming. Once I realized I had lost a little weight these puppies were the first things I tried back on. They don't fit like exactly like they used to but I'm pretty darn pleased all the same! 

These shorts were a Goodwill find that were once very frumpy mom 1990's Calvin Klein shorts. Exhibit A below. I totally distressed the crap out of them and am so thrilled how they turned out!   
I got to admit, I sometimes feel a little funny wearing them, though. I think I look pretty darn good in them but I worry that someone will think, "Her thighs are too chubby to be wearing that." And then I just think... 
and I wear 'em anyway. 

P.S. I HAVE to tell you about my shoes even though I was a naughty blogger who didn't get a photo of them (I was rushing to do these photos before work). You can see a better shot of them on my instagram. They are not only so cute, and soooooo comfortable (they weren't kidding when they said these were made for barefootists), they're ethically made! 

Shorts: Goodwill | Top: Modcloth | Sweater: Korean Thrift Store | Shoes: Flips Bare (similar) | Sunglasses: H&M | Rings, Earrings, and Bangles: all old 

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Ask The Belted Pear: What Do I Add to My Wardrobe to Make It More Vintage-Inspired and Adult?

"Hey Lindsey! I love your fashion blog and I have a big favor to ask of you. I am looking to start building a new wardrobe from the very beginning. I am looking to build a wardrobe that is more adult than my usual jeans and T-shirts and has a 50s and 60s flair while maintaining a classic and timeless look. Does this exist? What pieces should I start buying? I appreciate any help you can give! Thanks!"

My answer for practically any question is: research (I guess it's been ingrained in this English major's mind). Here are some of my favorite fashion blogs that are heavily vintage-inspired. My favorite thing about all these ladies is that even though they truly love vintage clothing, nothing in their wardrobe is entirely true vintage. For one's entire wardrobe to be all vintage, it takes a lot of time, money, and effort that I think most people don't have. These ladies easily incorporate vintage styles, accessories and silhouettes into their wardrobe while still playing with that modern and classic line. Also, take a look at actual photos from the time period. What is it about the 50's and 60's that draws you in? 

6 Tips to Get You Started on a Vintage-Inspired Wardrobe: 
Sometimes starting a new wardrobe can be overwhelming, even with lots of inspiration floating around on the web. I think to really create feminine 50's looks and groovy 60's ones, it's all about the dresses, skirts, and small details. 

Vintage Inspired Dresses & Skirts

1. Fit-and-flair dresses - You're in luck! They are EVERYWHERE. They flatter anyone's shape and they're easy to throw on and yet add that instant pulled together look. 

2. Full and A-line skirts - For a vintage look, remember everything goes at your waist. Swim suit bottoms, shorts, pants, and especially skirts. Even skirts that are not particularly full. I can find tons of skirts like this at Goodwill. 

3. Blouses - Adding ladylike blouses to your wardrobe instantly add a more adult, feminine look - exactly what you want for a vintage-inspired closet! A simple button-up is great; make sure you button it up all the way. Puffy sleeves, lace detailing, bows, and collars are other little things that make your outfit go the extra mile. 
Ladylike blouses
4.  Wiggle dresses - These were worn in the 50's and 60's. Think Marilyn Monroe is a slinky, sexy number. Wiggle dresses are a nice change of pace from the full skirt silhouette. And again, this is something tons of clothing companies still create. 

5. Mod shift dresses - These are dresses that just hang straight down via Twiggy. Almost like a carefully-crafted box. While the focal point in the fit-and-flair and wiggle dresses is the waist, with shift dresses it's all about the legs! To jump right into rad retro 60's styles, get a shift dress with a peter pan collar, with a bold geometric print, or daisy or plaid print. Again, you are in luck! The 90's are back in full swing and guess what? A lot of 90's fashion was inspired by mod 60's. It's all full circle in fashion, isn't it. 1960's dresses
6. Details, details, details - Now that you've got the silhouette's down pat, you might want to add extra details to pump up the vintage volume. For the 50's, think pearls, scarves around your neck or your hair, hats, hats, and more hats, cat eye glasses, gloves, structured bags, and curls (so many great vintage hair tutorials on youtube!) For the 60's, add knee-highs, mary janes, beehives and wide headbands. 

I hope this helped, Lauren! Thanks for asking The Belted Pear and happy hunting! 

Friday, February 21, 2014

The Secret Garden

Ya know when something feels right, it just... feels right? Dressing more consciously to my favorite style just makes me happier than a kitten with catnip. I feel like in Korea I was given so many clothes that weren't my exact style but still amazing, it was like a personal challenge to make it work. But after giving away most of those clothes (and having not yet establish a clothing swap group here - although if anyone in Singapore is down, email me!!!) I was left with only my favorite clothes. And the clothes I've bought in Singapore I've chosen a lot more carefully. For as long as I can remember, I've loved 1950's fashion. I can't be one of those who dresses up every single day in honest-to-goodness real vintage dresses. It's too expensive and my tastes vary too much. But I plan on adding more modern vintage-inspired pieces to my closet to mix and play with. Like this ModCloth crop top! It looks darling with this high-waisted full chiffon skirt but I am definitely going to switch things up and wear it with my maxi skirts and maybe some high-waisted denim shorts. 

And we must, must, must talk about these shoes. It's almost ridiculously scary. Do you remember me talking about my current obsession with low block heels? Well, son of a billy block if I didn't literally find the same exact shoes as the Kurt Geiger heels at my first trip to the Salvation Army for S$20! It was like Christmas came early! 

Another surprise gift was this little garden area. I knew there was a garden area on the 7th floor of my condominium, but when we went down there to take pictures, I gasped! I can't believe this is for me to use! It was like walking into Alice in Wonderland's garden - perfectly manicured green pathways and bright orange flower bushes. With my outfit, I felt like I could have been at some old-timey Southern picnic - expect for the palm trees, of course! 

What style feels right for you? Have you found any exciting little nooks and hiding places recently? Or the perfect fashion find? 

Crop Top: ModCloth | Skirt: Korean Thrift Store | Shoes: Singapore Thrift Store | Scarf: Comma (Korea) | Sunglasses: H&M | Necklace: Premier Designs | Earrings: Naughty Cat (Korea) | Umbrella: 7-11 

Friday, February 14, 2014

♥ Dino Darlings: Valentine's Day ♥

We knew Friday was going to be super busy for us, so my boyfriend and I decided to have a day date on Wednesday. It was the most imperfect perfect day. I had this ugly cut on the back of my foot so I couldn't wear my cute new heels that would have been magnificent with this outfit. My hair was falling out halfway because of mega winds, and my camera battery died on me (these are all shot with my phone). But tiny things!  We had so much fun going into the city and seeing the Dinosaurs: Dawn to Extinction exhibit at the ArtScience Museum in Marina Bay Sands. 

Marina Bay is very quickly becoming my favorite area in Singapore. The skyline is stunning, it has the Gardens by the Bay on one side, the ferris wheel off in the distant, the parliament building in front of you, the architecture of the ArtScience Museum and huge bridges that allow you to take the whole scene in, and of course, the bay.  It's exciting to only be an hour and $1.50 subway ride away from it all. We had lunch outside by the museum to take in the view. 

The dinosaur exhibit was also pretty stellar. I'm not super huge on dinosaurs but Stephen loves science. His curiosity and excitement was infectious. And the exhibit itself was well done; it was more like an experience than just looking at old bones. They had a soundtrack of mosquitos and wind and rawrs playing in the background and mist coming down from the ceiling - created this creepy feel in the jungle. Fantastic stuff! 

And let's talk about this dress, shall we? How perfect is it for a Valentine's date?! I had been eyeing it from Modcloth for a while and eventually I just had to have it. And no regrets whatsoever. It fits like a dream and then to be able to wear it with my red cat eye sunglasses, my strawberry necklace and style my hair in a pompadour; I honestly had too much fun! 

But the best part of the day was being to spend time with my Valentine. We've been so busy trying to settle into our new lives and he has to do graduate work on top of that so we don't get to spend a lot of quality time. It truly was the perfect day. 

What's your plans for Valentine's? Hope you have a cherry-cheery one! 

Dress: Modcloth | Sunglasses: Modcloth | Cat Watch: Eunhang Underground | Bangle: Vintage | Purse: Goodwill | Necklace: Gift  

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Take me to the Bus Stop

Ya know when you see something and you just gotta have it? That's what happened with this dress. Outside my new job are a bunch of little vendors that sell cheap clothing, shoes and bags. I always walk by there practically breaking my neck perusing. While I see a lot of things I like, nothing has compelled me to pull out my wallet. Until this dress. It's pretty near perfect and is something I've been wanting for a while. Last week, I saw a girl on the street wearing a white and red striped dress and I instantly fell in love. The dress looked so fresh and polished but yet casual. When I was walking past the vendors on Sunday, I saw this and instantly bought it (for $15!) 

Another reason why this dress is so perfect is the functionality. Dressing in Singapore (my new home by the way!) presents some new challenges: 
1) finding work-appropriate-wear that's not skimpy but still keeps you cool. 
This dress is sleeveless but still covers my bra, isn't too low in the front, and covers all my back. Check! 

2) finding work-appropriate-wear that is acceptable to sit the floor with kids.
It's just past my knees making it very comfortable to sit and play. Check! 

3) finding work-appropriate-wear that I would love even if I didn't wear it to work! 
I absolutely love the retro-nautical feel to this dress. I'd wear it with heels, to the beach... Yes, check! 

In Korea, I was a university professor; I could dress up pretty snazzy and because I was standing lecturing in the front of a classroom, I wasn't as limited in clothing choices. But now I teach little children and I'm running around all day. For the first few weeks, I was just wearing whatever worked. My thinking was, "Why am I going to get dressed up for 6-year-olds?" But then I realized I started not liking how I looked, I'd get this blah attitude. Then it occurred to me, I just need to do me for my own sake. Dressing up and feeling polished makes me feel better. And it worked! But man, wearing the jewelry, the make-up and the outfit really threw some of my little ones for a loop. One little boy stared at me for a while and kept pointing to his ears, lips, cheeks and hair saying, "Teacher... what... why? What... is... that...?" Like he couldn't decide what issue to address first. Finally he got out the question, "What is that on your ears?" Lol. Too cute. 

How does the way you dress change your attitude at work? Or does it?

Dress: Outside vendor, J-Cube | Tote Bag: Chinatown | Belt: Charlotte Russe (old) | Shoes: Goodwill | Scarf: Clothing Swap | Hat: Daiso | Earrings: Naughty Cat | Sunglasses: (red no longer available) 
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