Laura Rennie

look for less

look for less: colored cords

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Even though the afternoons here in Maryland continue to be warm, the mornings and evenings have been blissfully cool. I started my fall shopping this weekend at LOFT and walked out with a few cozy items, including these purple cords (which I got for around $36). I can't wait to wear them! Would you wear purple pants?

from What I Wore
Jessica used purple, white and black as her color scheme and made it interesting by playing with patterns and adding a slouchy leather bag. For my look, I used purple, white, navy and brown.
look for less - colored cords

Nordstrom BP bag - $42 (I also like this $30 tote from Target)

Total outfit: $214

look for less: peplum

Laura R.Comment
What do you think of the peplum trend?

Emily at Cupcakes and Cashmere was skeptical of peplums at first, but after giving it a shot she noted, "When balanced properly, like with a fitted floral skirt, an understated ruffle creates a surprisingly sleek silhouette."

It took me a while to warm up to peplum tops, but now I'm itching to get my hands on one! Here are a few affordable options:


Piperlime navy skirt- $49  is this even a peplum? whatevs it's cute.

I like the shape of the leather tank and polka dotted tee better than the other tops. The leather would be my pick, but in my dreams I'd hop across the pond and grab this gold sequined top.

look for less - scalloped shorts

Laura R.Comment
After taking several weeks off from doing a "Look for Less," I'm back with one of my favorite trends - a scalloped hem! Ah. J'adore. Anything with a scalloped hem is undeniably adorable. I decided for this look that I'd do a loose interpretation of the pic below combined with some of the ideas I received on Pinterest.  I was surprised to see how many types of tops you can pull off with scalloped shorts: polka dot, chambray, striped, loose, structured, etc.

Free People model
scalloped shorts

Depending on the dress code at your work, you might be able to get away with wearing these shorts to the office. If not, swap them out with your skirt or pants at the end of the day for a summery evening out. The top I chose is longer than the one in the inspiration photo, so it would look best tucked in (my fav). Wouldn't it look amazing under a blazer? When the weather drops you could slip on some tights or leggings under the shorts and swap out the sandals for flats or booties.

Do you wear oversized rings? I can't stop admiring the yellow one in this set.

H&M top - $13
Total - $124

look for less - color blocked blazer

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Olivia Palermos, granny style
I'm a little disturbed that I know who Olivia Palermos is. I think this pic of her is such a great example of the belief that women dress to impress other women. IMO, most guys would not find this look attractive. It's those granny pants! Even though I don't love the pants, goshdarnit if that girl can't pull them off!

I adore color blocking, but it seems so overused. I originally went into this post thinking I'd just match Olivia's outfit, but then I decided it would be more fun to design an outfit around a blazer using a similar color palette. Blazers make such a statement, don't you think? They add a touch of class to whatever you pair them with. 

colorblocked blazer
H&M blazer - $25
JCP lace tank - $18
Target ankle pants - $25
Nordstrom clutch - $16
Nordstrom initial watch -$18
JCrew bangle -$28
NY&CO slingbacks (not pictured) -$24

Total w/ bag - $126
Total w/ bangle - $138

I would go with the clutch or the bangle - not both. I'm all for adding color to an outfit, but I also think a toned-down look can be refreshing. The bangle isn't cheap, but it packs a punch and it could be worn nearly all summer long. I think the watch on one wrist and the bangle on the other would be adorable, so I'm leaning towards the bangle. I'm bummed I couldn't include the shoes in the set! They are so sexy and practical at the same time. The leopard printed ones would be pretty amazing too.

look for less - chambray skirt

Laura R.Comment
Girl, get yo'self on the chambray train. I bought this skirt from LOFT yesterday and, after spotting this cute fashionista, decided to design a "look for less" around it. Every time I do a "look for less" post I realize just how much one outfit can cost even if each item is budget-friendly. Don't be discouraged! A simple skirt like this one can be paired with just about anything - oxford shirts, soft tees and tanks, cardigans... depending on the color and material, a skirt can get you through all four seasons. The same can be said for the red bag, the sunglasses and the gold jewelry, too.

a not-so-cheap but super cute outfit from Penny Pincher Fashion
The navy and white top I've included in the look is clearly more similar to the inspiration photo than the coral stripe (and it's cheaper), but I wanted to show another color that would look great with this look (minus the purse - go with white or leather). The navy and white version of the coral top is absolutely adorable, too - I want it in both colors! This top is cute too.

I didn't notice until after I'd already published the set that the girl in the inspiration shot is also wearing a chunky gold bracelet. It's a gorgeous bracelet, but I think it's too heavy to pair with the heavy link necklace.

look for less - chambray skirt

Coral striped top - 29.99
Navy striped top - 6.80
Chambray skirt - originally 54.50, then 39.99, now on sale for 20.99 (discounted price in store was 12.50, w/ LOFT card it was 10.62!!!!)
Sunglasses - 5.80
Necklace - 7.80
Wedges - 39.95
Purse - 35.99

Outfit cost (w/ coral top) - $140.52
Same outfit w/ in-store skirt price - $132.03
Outfit cost (w/ navy top) - $117.33
Same outfit w/ in-store skirt price - $106.96! (this striped top alone costs $105)

I love Penny Pincher's shoes, but I couldn't find any like them - let alone look-alikes under $50. The wedges were the cutest shoes I could find, and even though I rarely spend over $25 on anything other than jeans, $40 is a great price for shoes. If only I could walk in heels! I'm such a flats girl.

I got a stain on my skirt literally minutes after putting it on. Thank goodness for fels-naptha - the stain came right out.

look for less- city sophisticate

Laura R.Comment
Yes, the inspiration photo for this look is of a toddler. But just look at this kid! I die.

the always fabulous Evie

You wear that cute trench coat and you're standin' and posin'
You got soul, you got too much soul
Ideally I'd know the cost of an inspiration outfit so I can make an outfit that costs less money, but my guess is this lil gal's miniature sized trench and pants cost just as much as the adult version.

Each of the components of this outfit are in trend right now, so you can easily find them at a variety of stores if you don't own some of them already. I originally picked these blue legging jeans from Gap, but found these $44.99 pants at Land's End. The trench is from Forever 21 and is $32.80. There are two choices for shoes and head scarf. The top options mimic the photo better and is less expensive, but the bottom options create a more grown-up look. The blue zig zag scarf is only $3.80 and is another Forever 21 find. The dark brown Mary Jane's are $19.99 at Payless (they got great reviews and probably look cuter on than they do in the pic). I'd personally go for the $4.95 hairband from H&M and the $40 bronze flats from Zappos. I think Evie would approve.

between seasons

view all details here
outfit 1 total cost- $101.58
outfit 2 total cost- $122.74

look for less - short wedding dress

Laura R.1 Comment
If you've seen my fashion posts, you know I love putting outfits together. Most of those outfits are craaazy expensive though, so I'm mixing things up and putting together budget-friendly ones instead. I'm going to start publishing weekly "looks for less" - inexpensive looks based on pictures I find on the Internet. Drop by each Friday to see what I've put together and let me know what you think!

lace dress - $698 from this Etsy shop
(the bride got it right. the groom, not so much.)
How cute are short wedding dresses? The one above has two of my favorite wedding dress details - lace and scalloped edges. For many brides, the $700 price tag (not including shipping) is a steal. But $700 isn't chump change for someone who is maybe paying for her own wedding. To recreate the look, I chose a $179 dress from Macy's (love the back) and paired it with $50 fuschia heels from DSW. The pop of color is fun and unexpected, but it's not for everyone. The earrings are from Charlotte Russe and they're only $6! No one has to know... Finally, give your almost-kissed-by-your-husband lips a swipe of $8 drugstore lip gloss. I tried this stuff the other day and loved the way it felt on my lips. It really does give you a fuller pout - perfect for pictures!

short wedding dress

cost of dress and shoes combined - $229