a personal style blog by Lauren Pfieffer

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Lavender Latte, Please.

Red Turtleneck (very similar): Thrifted.
Floral Mini Skirt (similar): Thrifted.
Tan Coat w/ Gold Buttons (very similar to mine & also from F21): Forever21.
Black Boots: Thrifted.
Brimmed Hat (identical): c/o OASAP (old).

Hello everyone!

Hope that you had a swell weekend ♥ Mine was mostly spent doing homework (NINE hours on Saturday!), but I feel accomplished and on top of my game. It's important homework that will affect my post-grad life. Usually when something can help along my job search, I'm all for dedicating time for that! I completed the second part of my senior project that I talked about the other day. I'm proud of how it all turned out and hope to show you all soon! Added bonus: I got to spend all day in the cutest coffee shop in Akron a friend recommended to me. I had the most wonderful lavender latter-- they're life changing, guys!

Doing more homework today but am enjoying the rejuvenating warm weather! A simple breeze and some sunshine can make text book reading not so bad after all. x

With much love, Lauren.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Has Instagram Replaced Fashion Blogging?

Black Turtleneck (similar): Thrifted.
Navy Corduroy Skirt (identical to mine!): Thrifted.
Mini Backpack (similar to mine for a great $48): Thrifted.
Gold Chain w/ Pearl (similar): Thrifted.
Black Riding Boots (high end/ low end): JCP.

I first started blogging in 2009 at its height: bloggers in the front row instead of editors, huge campaigns featuring bloggers, and just a general world-wide fascination with the blogosphere. My blog obviously started out small but grew a lot those first years when blogging was still ardently popular. However, it was also the beginning of blogging's decrease as things became over-saturated and inauthentic. 

I noticed a definite shift in my page views and comments around 2013 or so when Instagram really became an integral part in the social media world. As my Instagram following and likes increased, my blog traffic and engagement decreased. 

I started my Instagram in 2012 and I loved it because it was an easy, convenient way to share my own photos, as well as, view others'. We are an incredibly visual species, and we react best to photos. It's a no brainer Instagram became such a success.

 Instagram makes it easier to curate a brand than traditional blogging does. Anyone can be an Instagram blogger. You snap a photo on the iphone, do some quick editing in an app, post, and BOOM. You can get 100+ likes in a few hours. But actual blogging is different, and a lot more time consuming. It takes time photograph using a tripod or photographer, look through them at home, edit them, resize them, upload, write a post, proof read it, link outfit details, and then promote it via social media. Why do all that when you could do a simple one, two, three step?

 Instagram is more gratifying, as well. It may take a few hours, days, or even a few weeks to get all your readers to look at and react to a post. Followers on instagram can view your photos 10 seconds after you post it and let you know what they like about it: giving you useful, real time analytics. Achieving "insta-famous" status takes a fraction of the time versus the years it takes to establish a well-followed blog. Smart hashtags and optimal tagging get you there in no time.

I've found readers react better to my Instagram posts rather than blog posts, too. In a busy world, people rarely have time to actually sit down and read blogs anymore. I know when I was younger and had less responsibilities I would dedicate a few hours weekly to reading my favorite blogs. Now, I'm lucky if I can even keep up with my few favorites. I find it so much more convenient to check between classes what a blogger is doing on Instagram.

Also, I feel like once I've seen the outfit on Instagram, I no longer need to go to the blog to see the whole post. It's sad, but true. How many of you have seen a preview of my outfit on Instagram, with the outfit details tagged, and thought "why would I go through the trouble to go to her blog just to look at a bunch of photos of something I've essentially just seen the jist of?"

The one advantage traditional blogging has over Instagram blogging is the power of words. It is impossible to write a post of this length and substance in a tiny Instagram caption. With the recent Instagram update to 'view more' it's even a sign that the company is telling us "write less, this isn't the place for a novel." And it isn't. Instagram is meant for snappy, witty captions that catch attention, complimenting the visuals.

I love Instagram. I love blogging. But it makes me sad to see blogs becoming less relevant as our society demands more convenience, speed, and instant gratification. Blogs are a defining element in our generation and represent a pivotal point in media's history we can't take back. I know technology changes and that excites me. I just hope that blogging remains an important medium for self expression, connection, and inspiration for years to come. 

With much love, Lauren.

P.S. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this topic!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Styling a Red Trench Coat.

Red Trench Coat (similar red trench coat, higher end red trench coat) : Forever21 (super old).
Cream Turtleneck (similar from ASOS): Thrifted.
Light Wash Skinny Jeans: Aeropostale.
Pointed Kitten Heels (similar from Michael Kors): Payless.
Black Patent Envelope Bag (very similar to mine): Thrifted. 

Hi guys!

Sometimes I want to put aside all the try hard, show stopping pieces in my wardrobe and stick to the basics. I almost always feel more comfortable & confident in my outfit when I don't have a mish mash of competing pieces vying for attention. This classic red trench coat is a favorite item I've had in my wardrobe over the years. I bought it when I was in high school (so probably around 6 years ago!) and it has been a loyal staple ever since. Red trench coats are just so flattering & the color adds sophisticated personality without being over the top.

I thrifted the cozy cream sweater about a month ago & live in this thing! A skirt seemed too fussy for this outfit so I opted for my worn in pair of skinnies I bought while working at Aeropostale. These low kitten heels are also wardrobe piece well worn. They were a steal from Payless and I wore them throughout the summer at my internship, & continue working them into my outfits to dress things up.  Bella Hadid kind of inspired my outfit with this look of hers. I've always wished I could work that model off-duty look, so this outfit is a college student's twist on that. 

Hope you are having a great week so far! Oh, and thanks so much for the encouraging words on my senior project. I'm going to try to keep you all updated with my progress as the semester continues on! x

With much love, Lauren.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Rustic Reminiscence

Orange Lace Dress (similar one from H&M for $35): Figleaf.
Striped Mockneck (similar): Thrifted.
Brown Boots (similar): Thrifted.
Chain Fringe Necklace (very similar to mine!): Thrifted. 

Hi guys!

Seniors in college usually take a final course called a"capstone" that demonstrates the knowledge we've accumulated over the past four years. For my fashion merchandising degree our capstone class is called senior seminar. In this class we work on a 60+ page portfolio over the semester that recreates everything we've learned. The premise of the project is picking a publicly held retailer to extensively report on them as though they employed you.

The project starts out with conducting market research on the company: background, logistics, manufacturing, brand mission, and company revenues, ect. You then take this information and compare it to their competition to identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunites, and threats your retailer has. Next is performing customer research on everything from the average salary, age, interests, occupation, and living situation. 

The part I'm working on now is creating a line for my brand (I'm doing Anthropologie!) where I study reports from fashion publications like WWD, Pantone, Donegar, and WGSN to see what is trending and how I can adapt this to fit my target customer. Creating a line isn't playing make believe: it's quite extensive. I have to come up with flats (technical designs of products), fabrics, trimmings, and make style sheets for a 9-10 piece collection Anthropologie would essentially launch. I'll be going as in depth as even looking at the exact fabrics I would purchase online and calculating how much each garment would cost based on the price per yard.

After this part I'll work out a six month plan for my line. This includes an assortment mix and style plan calculating how many of each product I would buy in what colors, styles, and sizes.

Finally, I will do a floor plan for my collection and a mock planogram of how I would display my collection in the store according to Anthropologie's aesthetic.   

I'm still in the beginning stages of my project, but have a concept board for my line inspired by corroding rust (but in a beautiful way). It focuses on hand-crafted artisan elements, 70's inspired styling, and menswear silhouettes.

 Fashion school is extensive and difficult just like any other major! Don't let your parents, peers, or even yourself devalue studying fashion if you're interested. It is a very rewarding major & I've loved everything I've been lucky enough to learn the past three years! x

With much love, Lauren.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Black and White is Timeless.

White Blouse (identical to mine!): Thrifted.
Black Corduroy Jumper (very similar & on sale): Thrifted.
Black Lace Up Boots (similar): Thrifted.
Black Brimmed Hat (identical): c/o OASAP (old). 

 Hello guys!

There's nothing I love more than I good black & white outfit! Somehow black & white always looks put together and never boring. My eye continually on the look out for the perfect white blouse at thrift stores. It must be a good weight, quality fabric, and a flattering shape that lays nicely. Some white blouses are too boxy & stiff: others make you feel like you're a huge, white marshmallow. I was incredibly pleased to snatch this one up at the thrift store last week. I have literally been searching YEARS for something like it. Proof that persistence is the key to finding gems! Have a running list in your head of items you're looking for each time you go thrifting. It makes things a little less daunting. For example: I've been searching for a light-wash denim wrap skirt and a hunter green sweater for a few months now. Although I might not set out specifically for these pieces, I always do a quick flip through their respective sections at the thrift stores just in case. It takes going many times and being thorough to find what you want at the thrift store, but it IS possible! 

Don't think thrift stores are just for classic or retro pieces either. You can actually find a lot of on trend, fashion-forward items. These boots are a great example! People are always shocked I found these edgy, trendy boots that tie at the ankle. Usually what is currently trending is a repeat style from years prior, so it isn't as hard as you think to find modern pieces at a fraction of the price.

I just love thrifting & it has become a true passion and hobby of mine. I hope to be able to inspire others to develop a love for it, too, and pass along any advice I've learned to help you along the way. x

With much love, Lauren.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Everything You Want's a Dream Away.

Plaid Skirt (similar): Thrifted.
Cranberry Pussy Bow Blouse(identical!): Thrifted.
Black Lace Up Boots (similar): H&M (super old).
Camel Beret (similar): AA.

You won't be seeing this wintery scene for much longer in my photos. Lots of sunshine & warm weather is forecasted for the coming weeks and I am h-a-p-p-y. Truthfully, this winter hasn't been terrible in the least bit, but dressing & taking outfit photos is 10 times easier when the weather cooperates. It seems like (and this photo set is proof!) every time I get my tripod out it manages to start snowing while I'm taking photos, then ~magically~ stop as soon as I'm done. Hmm.... -___-

As I've been getting dressed lately I've noticed hardly any of my wardrobe isn't from the thrift store any more. This makes me quite proud! Studying fashion in college inspires me to take steps towards being a more ethical consumer by cutting down on fast fashion and unethically manufactured purchases. I have remnants in my wardrobe left over from when I would shop at Forever21 or receive items from wholesale websites, but really I haven't bought anything from these types of stores in a long while. My wardrobe feels more "me" than ever by having a completely closeted collection of one-of-a-kind thrifted gems that I've hand picked over time. 

With much love, Lauren.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Something In the Way You Move.

Silk Nightie (similar & only $12, also similar) : Thrifted.
Green Military Jacket (similar): Thrifted.
Black Infinity Scarf (similar chunky one like mine): H&M.
Black Boots (similar): Thrifted.
Grey Textured Socks (identical to mine): Thrifted.

Hi guys!

We got a huge dumping of snow a few days ago and really it's the first of the season: so I'm quite enjoying it! 

I've written a lot in my last few posts, so I'll keep this short & just share some things I've been enjoying lately: maybe you'll enjoy them too!

--These illustrations of girls who revel in being alone.  
--Just the A Clothes Horse's blog in general: she is my blogging idol! 
--The new Liberty collaboration with Modcloth. My family is going to Puerto Rico for spring break so I've been looking at swimsuits non stop!  
-- The movie Love Story. Really, Really recommend watching it if you have time!  

Other things I've been enjoying: reading, white chocolate mochas, toast with strawberry jam, and this foundation.  

With much love, Lauren.
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