Mixing polka dots and florals… again.

Mixing polka dots and florals... again | www.eccentricowl.com Mixing polka dots and florals... again | www.eccentricowl.com

Yesterday morning, Asa woke up hysterically crying and clingy.

This is really unusual for him (I’ve heard some kids just always wake up on the wrong side of the bed, but he usually wakes up chirping “hi! hi! hi!”), so I knew right away that he was sick and expected a day full of runny poops and barfing. All day, though, he just remained lethargic, barely ate, drank lots of water, and only wanted to sleep and cuddle. Throughout the day his temperature stayed around 98 degrees, so I wasn’t too worried. But last night, before my husband and I clocked out for the night, we went in for one more check on him as is our custom, and discovered he was so feverish that he was actually red all over, and the thermometer informed us frantically that he was pushing a 103 fever. Mixing polka dots and florals... again | www.eccentricowl.com Now, we only have a thermometer that takes underarm or under tongue temperatures, and since it’s pretty impossible to get a crying toddler to keep a thermometer under his tongue, we were only able to take underarm, which is the least accurate of the bunch. After sponging him down and giving him water and generally just calming him from the hysteria that erupted when we picked him up (he had just been laying there looking at the ceiling, making not a peep until we touched him with our comparatively cold hands), we re-took his temperature and it was a slightly less alarming (but still very worrying) 102.

So, for the first time in his life, Asa slept with us in our bed. It was past midnight by the time we had him all settled down, and after a failed attempt by my husband to take him back to his own bed (Asa kept handing over his blankie and wanting up, which is usually a sign that he wants his crib), little boy fell into a fitful sleep on my husband’s chest, and we were able to gently deposit him into the middle of the bed. It’s amazing how such a little body can hog so much space; my husband and I both assumed the other had lots of room because we both slept on the very edge — Asa’s head was at my husband’s chest, and his feet were somewhere around my stomach. He knows how to get the most space for himself, I tell ya.  Mixing polka dots and florals... again | www.eccentricowl.com Mixing polka dots and florals... again | www.eccentricowl.com We spent most of the night alternatively checking his head and underarms for temperature changes, knowing that if his fever didn’t subside he’d need a doctor’s visit in the morning, and by 6am when my husband’s alarm went off, Asa’s fever was down to 100. He promptly sat up as soon as the alarm went off, said “hi”, tapped my back (I can’t stay in one position too long right now, so had my  back turned), dropped his pacifier, said “uh oh!” (his current favorite phrase), and, after a little bit of “talking”, handed my husband his blankie, reached out his arms to be picked up, and waved goodbye to me.

This time, he did want to be taken to his own bed, where he slept sporadically until 9:30am. I wish I could say that I slept too, but I’ve discovered recently that if I attempt to go back to sleep after having woken up past 6, I get up feeling groggy and queasy and more miserable than when I just do without sleep.

Thankfully, when Asa finally woke up for good (well, temporarily; he was only up for two hours before he asked for a nap), his fever was completely gone and he was merely a toned down version of his usual silly self — staying put on the carpet where I deposited him to change a diaper for nearly 15 minutes after I’d finished and gone to grab a few things, only truly waking up after he ate a banana, halfheartedly piping up “uh oh” whenever he dropped a toy or a binkie — and I’m pretty sure he’s on the mend. Whatever bug got him yesterday was short lived, and now I’m just hoping my husband and I don’t get it, too. Mixing polka dots and florals... again | www.eccentricowl.com

Shirt, Target | skirt and belt, thrifted | shoes, Modcloth

So today, you get pictures that are nearly a week old now, from a day when I threw on this shirt and skirt and said “why not?” once again — my outfit mantra now when I try on things that are perhaps more bold than I was thinking that day, or more outlandish than I normally wear. I seem to pair this shirt with florals (or patterns in general) much more often than I realized, and it is definitely one of my staple closet basics.

I’m becoming very glad that I’ve shot a few double outfits in the last few weeks, on days when I had extra time and had a few things I wanted to style, because on days like these, when there’s very little chance I’ll get dressed, it’s nice to have a backup plan.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

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Mixing polka dots and florals... again | www.eccentricowl.com

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Vintage floral dress, Thrift Haul #4, and an Etsy shop update!

Vintage floral dress, Thrift Haul #4, and an Etsy shop update | www.eccentricowl.com So, Monday and yesterday I did a MASSIVE amount of work listing all of the things I’ve gotten for Etsy, and now… I obviously have to share them with you! I thought this would also be a good time to share yet another thrift haul, because my husband and I went to several garage sales, my cousin sent me some estate sale vintage, and its becoming a habit to visit Goodwill on $1.49 Monday.

And, of course, I had to try on this pretty 1970’s dress because it’s floral and it came with a belt and a matching detachable neck ruffle (which you can see here) and I wasn’t 100% sure I wanted to sell it. In the end, though, I adore it but I don’t think I’d wear it often enough to justify keeping it, so some other lucky gal gets to enjoy the print, the pleats, the matching belt, and the ruffly neck (which I can’t pull off, my neck is too short!) Vintage floral dress, Thrift Haul #4, and an Etsy shop update | www.eccentricowl.comVintage floral dress, Thrift Haul #4, and an Etsy shop update | www.eccentricowl.com

Looking at these pictures, I am having second thoughts about listing it. It’s so light and airy and dreamy, isn’t it? It would be perfect for spring. And you could wear a multitude of grays, pinks, or browns (or even reds) to match the colors in the pattern.I wish it was easier to capture the delicate gray print behind the roses on the dress; it’s so, so pretty, and it looks like lace.

Vintage floral dress, Thrift Haul #4, and an Etsy shop update | www.eccentricowl.comVintage floral dress, Thrift Haul #4, and an Etsy shop update | www.eccentricowl.com

It’s a good thing I already listed it, because I’m totally talking myself into keeping it, but putting it up for sale feels too permanent to change. The one issue I had was that the button over my chest wanted to pop open, but um… I’ve grown (thanks, pregnancy) in that area, and I was stretching its capacity. Anyone an inch or two smaller than me wouldn’t have that issue, I think. And if they did, it’s easy to take in a stitch or two for that buttonhole to keep it from opening again.

Vintage floral dress, Thrift Haul #4, and an Etsy shop update | www.eccentricowl.com

Vintage dress and belt, available here | heels and ring, thrifted | flower crown, c/o Choies (similar)

How would you style this dress? My mom loves it, and was the one who convinced me to buy it, and doesn’t want me to sell it. Haha!

Speaking of selling, let’s get to the Etsy update! I am so excited about this, because I’ve finally gotten my listings up past 40 (and my goal is to get them up past 50 by the end of the week), and I also just love the way the shop looks now. So many patterns and colors and fun garments (that I would totally keep if I didn’t already have a massive amount of clothes.)

Owl and the Boy Vintage Dresses | https://www.etsy.com/shop/OwlandtheBoyVintage

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I have finally added so many dresses to the shop! And I am just dying over the prints, you guys. Obviously there are a lot of florals, because… that’s what I love, so that’s what I put in the shop, and it is SO hard to let them go! I am also excited that quite a few of them are my size or larger (2, 3, 4, 6, 7, and 9 are all me-sized or bigger), so my shop is officially all-sizes friendly! It’s been my goal to get lots and lots of sizes available so that nobody browses and gets frustrated that nothing would fit them.

Owl and the Boy Vintage | https://www.etsy.com/shop/OwlandtheBoyVintage

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I also added jumpsuits that I’ve been hoarding (I don’t know, am I the only one who cannot resist a jumpsuit even though they’ll never look good on me? Because I love them.), and a mod cat dress that is kind of crazy but also adorable that I’ve had for AGES (I cleaned out my closet), and some really fantastic blouses. Surprisingly, I only had two skirts to add — I’m usually a skirt fiend and I have boxes of vintage skirts I need to put up, but this latest listing run was all about dresses and shirts, apparently. I was especially excited to find that paisley skirt — the other paisley skirt I have listed is the #1 most favorited item in my shop, but the 26″ waist is not adjustable at all, so it hasn’t sold. This one, though, has an elastic band that makes it stretch from 27″ to 31″, so it is definitely more versatile!

I am so, so happy with how my shop looks right now, and especially with all of the sizes now available. I have everything from an extra small to a size 20, and I’m excited to keep adding more items and more sizes as I work on the piles I have in my vintage boxes. Also, rearranging the items into a rainbow was incredibly satisfying. It’s the little things.

Last of all, the thrift haul video!

I hope you all made it through this massive post. Thank you for reading, and watching, and perusing, and whatever you do! And as always, if you like something on Etsy, don’t forget to use OWLREADER for 15% off!

Happy Wednesday!

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Polka dots, red lips, and real mom confessions

Polka dots, red lips, and mom confessions | www.eccentricowl.com Polka dots, red lips, and mom confessions | www.eccentricowl.com

I always wonder how the lives of other mom bloggers go. What do they do day-to-day; what is their routine like; do they actually get dressed for all day???

Because I have a confession: I am usually not dressed until Asa goes down for his nap. Which these days is around 1pm. I don’t generally feel like putting pretty things on, doing my makeup, wearing shoes, or getting hair all done for most of the morning, when there are two meals to be had that could potentially stain clothes, a toddler to be chased, and no clear sightline to the living room from anywhere in the house. And when you’ve got a 16 month old climber who can get up onto pretty much anything by himself, it’s risky to leave the room. Even if you can hear him.

Polka dots, red lips, and mom confessions | www.eccentricowl.comI always wonder how other mothers do it. Up early before the baby to get ready? Do they wait like I do for naptimes to get things done (or clothes on)? Given, living with people who are remodeling makes it harder; if it was my own house, I’d probably be able to multitask, as we’d only have one floor and no construction areas for curious little fingers to get into. Polka dots, red lips, and mom confessions | www.eccentricowl.com But naptime comes around and I usually have time to clean myself up, put on real clothes, throw on my usual makeup, and take outfit pictures before Asa wakes up. It’s a nice little reprieve from watching him and attempting to do what housework I can. (And yes, I do wear the clothes I post for the rest of the day after I’ve gotten them on.)

Although, I still haven’t figured out how to get a shower in there. Which is confession #2: I don’t shave daily unless it’s a really fancy date and people might care if my legs have 3 day old stubble. Not to mention armpits. And with the body hair movement going on right now (which, by the way, is pretty great; I don’t think any woman should feel she has to shave uless she wants to. I generally want to. My body hair is not soft.) I’m pretty sure nobody cares anyway. Polka dots, red lips, and mom confessions | www.eccentricowl.com Polka dots, red lips, and mom confessions | www.eccentricowl.com Which brings me to confession #3: I am not an active go-to-the-park, teach all the time, play with the baby type of mom. I know I’m not the only one – I have seen a rash of blog posts about moms who have felt the pressure to be the “fun” mom but just aren’t – and I do play with Asa, and always make a point to put down my phone or computer if he comes up with a book or wants to cuddle or comes over with toys for me — but I have a hard time figuring out what to actually do with a baby this age. Stacking blocks and spreading Duplos around the room and holding paper down so he can learn to scribble with Crayons is only entertaining for so long, and who doesn’t get tired of reading the same book 50 times in a row?

Don’t get me wrong: I love motherhood. Asa is happy and easy and funny and so, so busy all the time, and he’s so efficient at entertaining himself that… I suppose I don’t feel I have to engage him constantly. And of course, being pregnant does give me excuses for not being super active, but still. Mostly, this confession is for those moms out there who are like me, because… it’s okay. Not all moms are super moms. I’m guessing most moms probably aren’t play-with-the-kids-all-the-time moms.

Polka dots, red lips, and mom confessions | www.eccentricowl.com

Dress, headscarf, and earrings thrifted | belt, from this skirt and heels (similar), Modcloth | glasses, c/o Firmoo

I see a lot of pictures of blog moms who are dressed beautifully and post pictures interacting with their children, and I always wonder: is that real life, or is that staged? I certainly don’t have time to take pictures of myself playing with Asa (I tried, it’s hard) but as well on any given day I am either cleaning house or on the couch in my yoga pants while he plays by himself and explores his limited area of reach. (We also go outside when it’s nice, where he explores the yard and climbs toys and I watch and ensure he doesn’t damage himself.) Maybe when he gets older and more communicative, I will play with him more. Or maybe I’m going to be one of those moms who lets her kids play and imagine and entertain themselves as long as they’re not breaking stuff or beating up other kids.

I don’t know. I just know I’m much more laid back as a parent than I thought I would be, and I think it’s okay. And I want other moms to know… hey, it’s okay if you’re not playing with your kid 24/7. They need to discover and learn for themselves sometimes. It’s okay if you don’t get dressed until 2pm when the baby is sleeping and you finally have 30 minutes to yourself. It’s okay if you don’t shower all week, or shave, either. You’re a mom. Do what you need (and WANT) to do to survive.

What are your mom confessions?

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Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse

Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.com I am one of those people who gravitates towards prints, as we all know. And most prints, I find pretty easy to style — patterned skirts? No problem! Floral dresses? I have and wear about 40 (#noshame). Patterned tees? Generally basics, to me. But when I happen upon an unusual patterned vintage button up blouse, suddenly… I’m stumped. It’s a piece I don’t often style, even though I am drawn to and own at least 7 of them. I used to think collars fought with my hair (when it was long), and somehow pattern in this type of garment got intimidating rather than fun.

So today I decided to grab one of my latest thrift finds, this 1980’s purple patterned button up, and style it four different ways. I thought it was going to be hard, but pulling these four outfits from what I have was actually surprisingly easy. And I could have gone on and on pairing this top with many other items of clothing. I hope this inspires you to grab those pieces you don’t normally go for just to see how well they will actually work with your closet!Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.comFour Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.com For the first look, I went towards a combination I only recently discovered I loved when I bought this black and white striped top, though currently my belly is slightly too big to button the blouse at the bottom. It’s a super easy retro way to style pretty much any longer blouse, especially if you’re trying to wear jeans in a more vintage way. Jeans tend to be the hardest thing for me to style to my personal aesthetic, but now I’m thinking I just need more oversized button up blouses like this!

Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.com

Jeans, Motherhood | booties, Kohl’s | headscarf, thrifted | earrings, grandma’s/vintage

Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.comFour Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.com Second time around, I wanted to get girly and add a bit more of a modern flair, for those of you whose aesthetic is not super vintage. Tying up a blouse over a high waisted skirt is one of my favorite ways to wear button ups, and adding a statement necklace to a buttoned-up-to-the-neck look is my favorite way to highlight a collar and keep it all from getting too stodgy.

Confession: these are the heels I wore for my wedding, and this is the first time I’ve ever paired them with an outfit. I think I need to do this more often, no?

Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.com Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.comSkirt, thrifted | heels, Macy’s | necklace, c/o Oasap | ring, old

Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.com Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.com This is what I would look like if I was a hipster. (insert winky face)

For the third look, my main object was to style the blouse under a dress as I have seen so many bloggers do adorably. Originally, I was going to style a different blouse for this post, until I discovered it didn’t button over my stomach at all, and the dress styling would have been completely different! But, hipster called, and I went. Haha! I’m particularly fond of these earrings; they look like fireworks, and they’re made up of stars. You can bet I’ll be wearing them for fourth of July!Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.comFour Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.com Dress, Target | flats, earrings, sunglasses, and belt, thrifted | hat, husband’s (Target?).

Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.com Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.com

And last but not least, in an outfit that is probably most “me” of the bunch, I decided to try pairing the top with one of my patterned skirts. Usually, when I mix prints, I go for black and white together, or black and white with color — rarely do I mix two colors and two opposing prints. But I adore how this one turned out, and will definitely be wearing this combination a lot! Possibly minus the petticoat, because… let’s just say from the side it isn’t that flattering on a 24-weeks-pregnant woman.

Four Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.comFour Ways to Wear a Vintage Printed Blouse | www.eccentricowl.com

Skirt, c/o Cut and Chic vintage | petticoat, Garbo’s Vintage Wear | belt and heels, thrifted | earrings, grandma’s/vintage

So, which one is your favorite, and which combination would you be most likely to try? I had so much fun trying to style this shirt in four unique ways (and did you notice they all mix patterns? In #2, it’s hard to see, but my shoes are lightly patterned) and it also boosted my inspiration of outfits to try now that I’ve started adding more vintage print blouses to my wardrobe.

I’d also love to make “Four Ways to Wear It” a series, so if you enjoyed this and there are garments or patterns you’re feeling stumped to remix, please let me know!

Have a wonderful Thursday!

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Marvel skirt, gray tee, and a detachable collar

Marvel skirt, gray tee, and a detachable collar | www.eccentricowl.com Marvel skirt, gray tee, and a detachable collar | www.eccentricowl.comIf ever you were to look through my (very sizeable) wardrobe, there would be one thing you might notice is in glaring deficiency: basics.

I have read every “must have in your closet” or “basics for every woman” article there is, and every time I take the handy checklists to my closet, I find that I am missing about 85% of the recommended basic garments. I don’t own a black blazer, a pair of dressy slacks, a neutral cardigan (unless mustard yellow counts), a white button up blouse, or even a wrap dress. I’ve never found the need to wear black tights when there are so many other colors out there, and I don’t even own a basic pair of black flats. (And why is black the basic color when silver, white, navy, brown, and red go with almost everything too?)Marvel skirt, gray tee, and a detachable collar | www.eccentricowl.com Marvel skirt, gray tee, and a detachable collar | www.eccentricowl.com Even a great little black dress is hard for me to find. I have one, and it’s pretty, but in the five or so years that I’ve owned it, I think I’ve worn it maybe twice, and it currently doesn’t fit me (not for the reason you might think — my belly, no problem. My boobs, however… it’s a whole new situation this time around and I’m pretty sure that’s the area that is going to grow out of everything I own far before my stomach does.) And I guess I also have an LBD from the forties.

Every other black dress I own, though, has pattern, buttons (insert: I just thrifted this exact dress for FIFTY CENTS. More on that later), collars, embroidery… you name it, it’s embellished somewhere. Marvel skirt, gray tee, and a detachable collar | www.eccentricowl.com And the one thing that I own from a “must have” list is, as you might guess, patterned: a striped tee, and I own in multiples. But only one of them is basic black and white stripes. The others have sequined collars, bows, or peplums.

The thing is, I’ve never really thought those lists made a lot of sense for any wardrobe outside of an office-wear one. This outfit contains probably my most basic of items — gray tee, silver flats — and I’m okay with that. I don’t think you necessarily need a set of basics to mix with the rest of your wardrobe, as long as you’re okay with clashing patterns or mixing great colors together. I rarely stare at my closet and think “Oh man, I wish I had ___ basic item because then I could make a real outfit!” Usually, I stare at my closet and wonder which fantastic colors and prints I should wear that day. Marvel skirt, gray tee, and a detachable collar | www.eccentricowl.com Marvel skirt, gray tee, and a detachable collar | www.eccentricowl.com Don’t get me wrong — I think in certain situations, basics can be helpful. If you work in an office-like setting where professional wear is required, it’s good to have a blazer, a pair of slacks, a pencil skirt, and a great pair of flats to tone down your wardrobe into work-appropriate.

But I have never felt that basics apply to me, or to anyone with a more retro/vintage wardrobe. Sometimes, I wonder if basic lists apply even to most women who read and snap up those garments in hopes that their wardrobes will be transformed into something wearable because of a few simple garments. Or if they just find themselves with more clothes they will never wear.Marvel skirt, gray tee, and a detachable collar | www.eccentricowl.com

Shirt and flats, Target | collar, thrifted | skirt, self-made | glasses, c/o Firmoo | ring, mom’s/vintage

I think basics fluctuate depending on your lifestyle and style preferences. Mine are far different from what InStyle professes they should be. The black and white prints that I can match with any other pattern or color in my wardrobe, this gray tee that I inevitably wear with everything, the multi-colored floral skirts that go with almost any top, polka-dot everything, and the nerdy graphic tee collection that grows monthly — those are my basics.

Perhaps pattern is my basic black. Silver is as neutral as my shoes get. Florals and polka dots go with everything. And as I’ll never be required to work in an office, I am 100% okay with that. But I’m pretty sure I could still pull office-appropriate attire out of my cacophonous wardrobe. Though I would probably be known as the loud dresser.

And that’s just fine with me.

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