Fashion

It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year?

August has arrived, and that means summer vacation is pretty much over. Waa waa! Aisles of markers, pencils, and notebooks popped up at Target on July 5. Department stores have been filling the racks with denim, jackets, and sneakers. My inbox is full of daily discounts on crisp, new backpacks and lunch boxes. That’s right, you guys… it’s back to school shopping time!

My first back to school shopping trip was in the summer of 1983. I was a cute little, sandy-blonde haired girl ready to start my educational adventure. As the oldest child in my family, and the oldest of 17 cousins, that shopping trip was extra special because I was the only one filling the cart. I remember going to K-mart with my mom and picking out crayons, scissors, and Shirt Tales folders. And we went to Sears and JCPenney to pick out a nifty selection of dresses, shoes, and play clothes that would make up my kindergarten wardrobe.

My Kindergarten style… Fall 1983

Right before school started we had a special fashion show. The whole family sat in my grandparents’ back yard, while I walked the catwalk through the grape arbor, all while being filmed on my aunt’s super 8 camera. The funniest part of the video is my three year old sister, with one new sweater, repeatedly following me. Each time, she would carry a new prop with her. A wax apple? A tissue? You know, she was quite creative.

This year, I am beginning my 36th consecutive year in school and back to school shopping is just as exciting as it was in 1983. Honestly, it’s one of the reasons I became a teacher! I love freshly sharpened pencils, colorful pens, and adorable paper clips. Plus, it is awesome to have an excuse to refresh my closet every summer. I still start the first day of school in a pretty new dress every single year.

My autumn obsessed heart quickens when the sweaters and boots hit the sales floor. I want nothing more than to start wearing it on the first week of school. But let’s be honest, as much as I love fall fashion, the temperatures in Missouri are like Satan’s front porch till the middle of October. This year, I finally wised up and tackled summer clearance for my back to school outfits. I snagged some amazing deals from ModCloth, Anthropologie, Torrid, Dress Barn, and A’Beautiful Soul.

The super 8 camera and the grape arbor are long gone and my family lives hundreds of miles away. But, gosh darn it, school starts next week and I want to have a fashion show. Join me as I share my fresh new looks for my 20th year teaching…

As a winter, I love wearing jewel tones! This office chic, cobalt blue dress is a clearance find from Dress Barn, paired with garnet jewelry from Shane Co.
Channeling my Hufflepuff vibes in black and yellow. I paired this houndstooth skater dress from Torrid with a yellow cardigan from Loft, my trusty black Tieks, and custom Hufflepuff jewelry from The Compton Company.
I absolutely love this satin, scarf print dress that I scored on the ModCloth Outlet, along with this retro-fab blue handbag.I paired it with sparkly sandals from Torrid, and amber jewelry I received as a gift.
I have had this autumn, vintage-inspired dress in my ModCloth cart for over a year. It finally hit a super clearance price. I can’t wait to wear it for fall festivities. I paired it with pearls, raspberry truffle Tieks, and my heirloom topaz ring.
Sometimes you just need a party dress. Feeling pretty makes a bad day better. This beautiful blue floral dress is from Dress Barn. I love it with fuchsia Tieks, and my silver bow jewelry from Kate Spade.
I have been dying to try the A+ brand by Anthropologie for a while, but it way beyond my usual price point. I got this one for $25 on a special sale. I love how breezy this dress is! A perfect weight for warm days, and a perfect color to transition to fall. My jewelry from Collections by Joya and Cuffs That Inspire go so well with this dress.
Paris chic is always my favorite! This adorable sweater and skirt are both ModCloth clearance finds, and my red diamond Tieks give the outfit a nice pop of color.
“Me and Jenny was like peas and carrots!”
Agriculture is a huge part of my school. I thought this sweater would be perfect for casual days with jeans from Loft and my floral Keds.
This kimono from A’Beautiful Soul is so boho chic. I like it with the mint sweater I picked up from ModCloth, jeans from Loft, and a fair trade headband from Trade For Freedom.
Most teachers just wear a school shirt, jeans, and sneakers on Friday. I like to elevate that by dressing my jeans up. Blazers can add a lot of professionalism to a casual outfit like this one from Torrid.
Torrid makes some beautiful items in this color every year. This top was super cheap and looks great with black skinny jeans and flats.

Trust me, my love for autumn style knows no bounds, and I am here for all of it once our absurdly short fall season arrives. For now, these new threads, paired with my current closet, will kick off a fabulous year.

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