I know I know, its been over a month since the Spring 10x10 has come and gone so I'm a little (a lot) behind in the times. But even then, I still want to catch up with a post since it was my first one.
Lets start with a little backstory. The Spring 10x10 couldn't have come at a more inconvenient time. I had just moved from Portland to San Francisco into a tiny, already full of things, bedroom at my boyfriends grandmas house. I went from having a full walk in closet to having a single clothing rack and six Ikea garment bags stuffed full of clothes under our bed, but I'll get into all of that later along with how the transition inspired (and slightly forced) me to finally take the plunge and get rid of half of my wardrobe and strive toward an ethical lifestyle. All that to say, I didn't have the chance to unpack at all before the 10x10 started. I was still dedicated to trying my best to complete the challenge anyway, even if I had to alter the rules a bit in order to get going on time. I'll break down my process below:
Events to consider for the 10 days:
New city, new lifestyle - First week in our new home = life without a car for the first time and lots of exploring and learning about our new climate and environment
Easter Sunday - Traveling by train to family for the weekend and a nice Easter breakfast = easy commute clothes/shoes but something nice that wont wrinkle in a backpack for Easter
Best friend coming to visit toward the end of the challenge - Make sure to have comfortable clothing for all the walking around/exploring we'll do and look nice while doing it
Brunch with parents and their friends in the city - casual but polished look
Birthday on the last day of the challenge - Make sure to save an outfit I actually want to wear for the end (not just whatever I have leftover)
These conditions made me realize quickly that in order to feel confident, I needed to figure out where my comfort zone was and how to stay close to it without being too dull. I decided that I wouldn't include shoes, mostly because I knew that we would be doing A LOT of walking, and I wasn't sure what shoes were going to make the most sense for style and function. I also decided to start with 8 items, because I knew that as I unpacked I would find a couple more things that I realized I needed or just simply wanted to include. Lastly, I decided to stick to a very neutral palate and not take any risks with any items that I chose for two reasons. The first being that this was my first challenge and I wasn't quite sure what to expect, and second I wanted to feel comfortable since there were so many things going on during the challenge. In order to not feel like I was taking the easy way out, I did decide to try to style my tops differently than I usually would in order to keep my creativity flowing and inspire me to see my clothes in a new way.
The 10 items:
1/ Uzi Button Down Top // old
2/ Madewell embroidered tee // old
5/ Amour Vert shift dress // similar
7/ American Apparel denim button up // similar
10/ Levi's 550 raw hem // thrifted and cut
For day one I thought I'd jump right into styling my shirts in new ways. I usually wear this shirt with the buttons down the back and tucked in the front, so I flipped the buttons to the front, tucked in the collar, and tied the bottom to see how I liked the front tie trend. Paired with my high waisted jeans, I liked the way it turned out. The shirt is oversized so I didn't love how the sides would poke out in weird ways as I walked around, but overall I was happy with the look.
Day 2 was by far my most "uniform" look. I've worn this outfit multiple times this spring so far and I love everything about it. The shoes are stylish, but super comfortable to walk around in, the hat is perfect for days I don't feel like doing my hair, and I love the color of the denim with the white shirt.
I honestly didn't love the way day 3 turned out. It was Easter and we were out in the burbs spending time with family, and it was HOT that day. My hair felt messy, I wasn't sold on my shoe choice, and I think a solid color purse would have complimented the busy pattern of the dress. All of that, along with not getting a great photo throughout the day just ended up making this day feel "blah."
Day 4 felt a little boring and uninspired. I'm not sure if it was because of the backpack or because I was too lazy to do my hair, but this combo left me feeling a bit young, like something I would have put together in high school. The patterns of the backpack and the shirt clashed, and I felt very one note. I think like day one, if I would have put on a more colorful shoe I would have liked the outfit more. But overall it was fine, and honestly I'll probably wear it again.
I LOVED this look! A bad shopping habit I've always had is that I buy dresses and then never wear them. I've never figured out how to fully add them into my daily wardrobe without feeling overdressed or inconvenienced. I took this dress to the test by wearing it all day through various activities of walking around and exploring and I felt great all day!
I spent most of day 6 at home cleaning the house and doing other chores so I was in workout clothes for most of the morning. I decided I needed to head down to the grocery store, and I usually would have just stayed in my comfy clothes, but I took going out as an opportunity to continue the challenge. I realized on this day how easy it is to get dressed and look nice without having to put in a lot of effort. I felt more confident and put together than I would have if I stayed in my workout clothes so I was very happy with how the challenge has pushed me out of my comfort zone and helped break old habits.
On day 7 I really wanted to try to layer something over my dress. This isn't a style I would usually do, but recently I've seen the trend floating around and I've loved the look of it. It took me half the day to get used to it, but by the end of the day I ended up loving the look. It was comfortable, perfect for the weather, and totally out of the box from what I would normally wear.
On day 8 my best friend got to town! And of course it was the rainiest day we had since we moved. I decided to keep my outfit pretty basic and tuck my Uzi top in like I usually do so I didn't have to think about my clothes at all since we were out and about while it was raining. This is another easy go-to outfit of mine, so it was nice being able to throw it on in the middle of the week and not put much thought into it.
The feeling of day 9 was not-quite-right. I wanted to try the half tucked denim shirt during the challenge, and I wasn't super thrilled with how it turned out. I didn't feel put together, I didn't do my hair or my makeup, and my feet were KILLING me because I'm still in the break in process with my new boots and I wore the wrong socks. I ended up tucking the shirt fully in on the front halfway through the day because I was tired of having half of it out. I might try the half tuck again on a day where I feel more put together, but on a day I didn't feel like getting ready, it was just the icing on the lopsided cake.
Day 10 was my birthday so I saved this easy outfit for last. I realized that these Levi's are perfect for days that I want to look nice but still be comfortable. I wore the outfit through the first half of the day, but ended up changing for my birthday dinner.
To sum it all up:
What I liked:
trying new things
seeing wardrobe pieces in new ways
opened my eyes to realize less really is more items got much more use than usual
What I didn't enjoy:
lack of variety
picked difficult items to pair
started missing certain go-to pieces as the week went on
Overall, I think the challenge went really well, it was almost too easy. There were even more outfit combos I could have kept mixing together, but I think that was mostly because I didn't include shoes. Ten items actually ended up feeling like more than I thought it was going to, so I think if I would have had 8 items of clothing and 2 pairs of shoes, it would have been a bit more of a challenge. I think next time around I'll include shoes which will be great for helping me learn how to match my shoes to different kinds of outfits, and I want to include more color because I got a little bored by the end of the challenge.
What do you think? Do you have any recommendations or suggestions I should keep in mind for the next 10x10?
Let me know in the comments!