Wednesday, August 28, 2013

creative layering: back bows

Early last month, I won $100 gift card to a local boutique called Gladiola Girls.
It's super cute and I fell in love when I happened upon it while walking downtown, so I was overjoyed to get the gift card from a Facebook 4th of July outfit contest!

It's a store I'd most likely have drooled over often, but never actually purchased from, except for a few perfumes and accessories - they carry higher-end clothing brands and most of them are out of my price range (I spent almost the whole gift card on this dress!).

Spending the gift card was a similar experience to my first Anthropologie purchase.
Freshman year of college I was introduced to the joy that is Anthro window shopping, and received a 15% off coupon for my birthday. I was so excited. I waltzed right in, grabbed the cutest mug I could find, and saved a whole $1.50 with my coupon.
The sales lady was completely baffled, maybe even a little irritated.
" know this is 15% off, and you can only use it once. You should probably save it for a more worthwhile purchase."
I stuck to my guns, "Oh, trust me. This is worthwhile."
That mug is still my absolute favorite, for being my first Anthropologie item and for being a special treat on my birthday as a poor college student.

My time in Gladiola Girls was no different. "'re getting a $100 dress for free. And you're not buying anything else?"
Sorry, Girls, for being the worst customer ever and ruining the whole point of these kinds of giveaways...

I took these photos shortly after I got it:

...but didn't actually end up wearing it, so I left the photos unblogged. I always try and blog things that I actually wear for a full day or for a specific event, and this outfit wasn't quite right yet.
I was trying to scheme a way to wear it in cooler weather, because we've been having so many rainstorms and it feels like Fall is trying to sneak up on us a little earlier this year. While it's an adorable summer dress and has this great back bow, that makes it really tricky to wear during any other season.

I was determined to find a way to successfully layer it, even with the tricky back bow, before I posted the outfit.

So, voila! Thanks to some advice from Rebecca of The Clothes Horse (who also owns this dress in another color), and some searching around online and within my own closet, I managed to put something together.

Dress: Dear Creatures (shop, shop), Blouse: Ruche (similar), Cardigan: J. Crew

I honestly love this outfit.
It's completely different from anything I've worn before, and makes me love this pink bow blouse even more for its endless versatility!

I felt a little overdressed for work (especially when corduroy pants are my coworker's go-to clothing item), but didn't care too much because I was covered in bows and completely comfortable.

I even grabbed a cardigan to help with my occasionally freezing office, and just let the bow peek out the top (which, in case you didn't follow the link earlier, is how Rebecca styled it).

What do you think?
Sound off in the comments below!


  1. So cute! I think it looks even better with the blouse underneath.

  2. Cute cute cute! I love that dress! And such a creative way to make it last more than just one season!