Fashion 101: How to Create a Minimalist Fall Wardrobe


"Less is more", truer words have never been spoken.  Let's face it, trendy and I have no qualms but minimalist style is sooo becoming my thang!  Maybe it was the trip to Paris, maybe it was my "No Shopping August Challenge", maybe it's having a son in college, maybe it's being sick of looking at my closet, feeling overwhelmed and like I have nothing to wear or maybe I am growing up a little and feel like I am enough, I am confident and don't need the frills to feel good enough.  Maybe its one of those or all of those but I have been shopping less and curated an almost fool proof fall style palette with things I already own and I thought you might want in on it.  Let's jump in, shall we?  


Blazers

I mean what can I say about a blazer that I haven't already said in this post?  They are awesome and literally finish every look you can imagine.  Dresses? Done. Jeans and a tee? Got you covered. Transitional piece to wear in place of a coat? Did we just become best friends?  The point is your wardrobe isn't complete without at least two blazers (thats going really minimalist there, I own at least 10 in all colors, shapes and sizes but I wear about 4 of them frequently).  White black, blue and tan, two, three or all four of these hues will get you through.  Feel like being adventurous?  Through in a bright red blazer, you wouldn't believe how versatile that color can be especially through the fall and winter months.  
Jeans

Lord have mercy ladies does anyone struggle in the jeans department like I do??  Finding a pair that fit and stay fit (saggy butt anyone) is nearly impossible.  I am currently living in mom jeans these days, mom jeans come up a little high at the waist and skim the ankle.  This fit works really well for me since I have a mom "pooch" extra goodness in my tummy area that just never went away after I gave birth to my son 18 years ago! (Thanks Tyler, lol) High-waisted jeans celebrate the smaller part of your body, your waist and is forgiving in other areas, your tummy.  It isn't about seeking perfection, its about finding what works for you.  I picked up a pair from Zara and H&M, the price is affordable and the shape is long lasting.
Button Down Shirts 

You should have a few, I have three pictured here that are so versatile.  They look great paired with jeans, slacks, skirts over a dress, I mean, versatile.  A white cotton button down shirt is a MUST.  I can't begin to list all the ways you can wear this piece but I will say you can even take it on a beach vacation and wear it over a bath suit while you walk hand and hand with the person you love.  You will always feel chic and timeless in white cotton, you just will.  Don't argue with me! 👅 The other two tops have a pattern which is visually interesting but it is still a very minimal pulled together classic design.  Stripes and polka dots, get your hands on them! The white cotton button down and the stripe blouse are both from H&M and the polka dot top is from Zara, which I got almost a year ago from Thredup, whats thredup? Do you want to save some money with a code?  Read more here.
T-Shirts 

Graphic tees are a bit trendy these last few years but that is because tees, graphic or not, is an American staple, am I right?  Fit, again is everything.  I am loving the feminine, politically charged tees like the #freethenipple tee pictured above.  Check out the hashtag to learn more about this movement, I could talk about it, but to keep with my less is more theme, I will leave it there.  The point is tees are being worn with everything, they are comfy, can be dressed up or dressed down, worn to work and on the weekend.  H&M has a great selection of basic tees that are loose, fitted, long sleeved, cap sleeved and tank top. Get. You. Some. Tees!
Shoes

This is a no brainer, minimalist style is all about chic, comfy, and the I-am-not-trying-to-pull-anything-off-but-of-course-I-am.  Loafers are a girls dream come true.  Now I will say I was a heels, all day everyday kind of girl especially at work.  Not these days, I have invested in a few fun but classic shoes that have literally been giving me life and add a little something special to my looks.







Scarves

Scarves are a chic and minimalist girl's best friend.  It is the easiest way to add a little bit of visual interest to an otherwise simple look.  Scarves also show your fashion chops.  I am telling you throw a gorgeous print scarf around your neck, a button down shirt, jeans, voila! Not only are you cool but you've got a little of the Parisian thing going on.  Timeless!

There are so many others tricks to this minimalist style I could share, for example hats, coats etc but this is the basic starter kit.  Of course you know there is more to you and life than your style.  I never want you to think that style is all that matters, cause it isn't.  Happiness, feeling grounded, having a sense of purpose, love, relationships all of those are important but self love is key.  You must care for your body from the inside out.  I believe that to my very core and I hope that is what I am imparting to you on my blog.  I had a lot of fun putting this together.  Let me know if you want a guide to a minimalist work wardrobe!



With love,

XOXO

By LifeStyledbyErica 

Going Away? Need a sitter for your pet? Read this!




A few weeks ago on Instagram I mentioned that my husband and I had a meet up with a potential dog sitter for Timmy that we connected with via rover.com.  A lot of you had questions about this process and I reached out to Rover and asked about a collaboration and they said yes!  (Great company to work with by the way, shout out to Peter!) Let's dive in.

I have great in-laws that help us out with our kids and Timmy, who they consider to be their third grandson, so when we plan trips, Timmy stays with grandma and grandpa.  Its perfect for us because Timmy is familiar with their home and its less traumatic for all of us! (I am referring to my husband and I).  Now my in-laws are retired and they travel A LOT.  We normally work around their schedule but as it happens last year we booked a trip at the same time they were traveling.  We tried to set up a sitter with another family member well in advanced but as it happens a little over a month before we were scheduled to board the plane, our sitter bailed.  I sent an S.O.S. on Facebook and after I had no takers I turned to good ole google to help me find someone!  I stumbled upon a site called dogvacay now rover.com .  At first I was skeptical, I mean yes we find so many solutions to our problems on the internet but a sitter for our Timmy in the vastness of the world wide web, no way!  Well we did!

Super Easy to Use 

Which comes first, the egg or the chicken?  So as soon as you entire the site, you can enter a search criteria for the dates you need a sitter and narrow done the available sitters using your zip code.  The site pulls up a list of near and available sitters.  It includes photos, brief description, rate and client testimonials and ratings.  All of this is accessible before you enter any information at all, which is a plus in an age of data collection.

Rover Understands the Dog Owner 

What I really love about this service is the "meet and greet" option before you book and commit any money to a sitter.  You are able, via the site, to set up an appointment to meet a sitter before you book a stay.  This gives you an opportunity to see how your furry friend feels around this person and also how you feel about this transaction.  After all, you are entrusting this person with the love and care of your best friend while you are out of town.  A bonus is to see the neighborhood the sitter lives in and even his or hers home.  Now this is important and different for each dog, but for example, Timmy is use to a very quiet environment and it is already traumatic for him to stay in a home he doesn't know, trying to account for the environment he is accustomed to is important.  I had a meet and greet with a lovely young lady who was a nursing student, she lived on the second floor of a five floor walk up.  That meant there was a lot of traffic passing by her door and the whole time Timmy and I visited he  was on super high alert, barking and circling around when someone was coming up the stairs.  She also lived by an elevated train with a nosey train passing by once every five minutes, another red flag for me and Timmy.   This may or may not be your concern but the service allows for this consideration and that is a plus.  Another thing to consider are the dog sitter's preferences, do's and dont's, for example, in our home Timmy sleeps on our bed, sofas anywhere he pleases really.  There is no reason to believe that your dog won't expect that same freedom at anyone else's home.  If those details aren't available on the sitter's profile, be sure to bring it up and see where they stand.

Cancelation Policy and Reservation Guarantee

Rover.com allows the dog sitters to set their own cancelation policies which is located in their account using flexible, moderate, and strict you can find what that means here.  This is important to consider, life happens and if something comes up and you need to cancel your reservation and get your money back you want to be able to do that.  It just so happens that was the case with the family vacation we took this past August.  We booked a sitter and then a friend offered to care for Timmy while we were gone.  We canceled the sitter a month before we were scheduled and received a 100% refund.  It was super easy and all done on the site.

Now, on the off chance that the sitter has to cancel a reservation (yikes) don't worry, again Rover has your back.  Check out their Reservation Guarantee here.

Creating an Account

This part is pretty self explanatory and it is important that you are as honest and upfront about what your dog's routine.  For example, I reached out to a potential sitter last year and my profile mentions that Timmy is walked an average of three to four times a day, that is more than average.  The sitter was in shock that Timmy was walked as often as he was and the bottom line for her was that she couldn't do that many walks and thats the point of the account and these meetings.  Not every sitter is a match to your particular dog's needs, knowing that upfront is key.  It saves time and energy.

What Happens Next  

After you meet the dog sitter of your dreams and confirm they are available and want to sit for you all you have to do is log on to Rover.com complete your account and book the stay!  Once you book and you board your plane, train or automobile you and your sitter can communicate via the site or exchange numbers so they can send you photos and updates on your pup.  Last year my husband and I were in Mexico and did not want to run up our cellphone bills, our sitter was nice enough to download WhatsApp and send us the cutest pictures of Timmy enjoying a walk, a treat and playing with his temporary adoptive family.  It was awesome!



Bottomline

I would use this site if I would ever need to book another sitter, if available, you can use your sitter more than once which is a plus.  I would also very highly recommend it to anyone who finds themselves in a similar dilemma.  BONUS!  I have a link that credits new accounts $25 that can be used on your first booking. Please click here  to reap those benefits and comment below if there are any questions you have that I didnt cover.


With love,

XOXO


by LifeStyledbyErica

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