To Clown or Not to Clown

Nov 19, 2012

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This is one of my most absolute favorite, cuddly fall sweaters… as well as one of my most frustrating, un-cooperating sweaters. It’s over-sized, looks like something a grandpa would shuffle around in, and has a patchwork of colors. All that is right up my alley, which is why I snagged it off the rack and ran to the cashier like a madwoman, never looking back.

But because it’s over-sized, looks like something a grandpa would shuffle around in, and has a patchwork of colors, it makes it super hard to style.

 It’s a fine line I toe between looking cute and looking like a homeless, train-hopping runaway clown. All I need is a stick that I could shlep over my shoulder as I walk the dusty roads around the tracks.

So as you can imagine there were many a days where I’d walk out into broad daylight, thinking I looked adorable, and I’d come home shaking my head, thinking just what possessed me to whip up such a combo.  But I think I have finally cracked it! The trick is less is more. Which is usually impossible for me. Disaster.

But I tried it and kept the outfit totally neutral with beige ad black colors, and I toned down the pop of interest from the collared checkered shirt by layering a colored sweater over it. And there you have it! A Marlen off to play board games with her brothers, not a Bob the Runaway Clown Down on His Luck.

Success! Anyone have any super hard pieces that you keep trying with? I'd love to hear your triumphant, fist-pumping success stories. And yes, they have to be that dramatic.

Amazing sweater- UO
Beige sweater- H&M
Shorts- F21
Booties- Topshop
Hat- UO
Belt- CK, thrifted (50 cents what what)





37 comments :

  1. i think it's such a fun/interesting sweater! and i love the hat :)

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  2. Like your sweater!

    xx
    Christina Klein
    http://bychristina.blogspot.com/

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  3. haha! I love how you write! The outfit looks great on you,wish I can pull off something like this..It is definitely and eye catching outfit!

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  4. SO SO cute! One of my favorite outfits, of yours. :)

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  5. OH stop, you are way more adorable than a runaway clown. Those things are scary. And I love the drama because that is kind of how I feel about his polka-dot cardigan I have. It is funny because you would think that a a simple polka-dot cardigan would be easy to mix and match but NO! I love polka dots on everybody else, but on me it is just too difficult to not look like 1950's housewife. and 1950's housewife my friend, is not my style

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  6. I LOVE IT. You are a genius, it turned out so good! I have a green and purple checkered sweater in my shop right now that I have been meaning to style on the blog, and I am pretty sure you just gave me a great push in the right direction of how I should wear it! Have fun with your board games :)
    xo Hannah

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  7. Great layering in this post! Love that hat and the cardigan :)

    xo,Amy
    itwasloveat.blogspot.com

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  8. you are so funny! i have so many clothes it's crazy. most of them fit into the category of "i have no place to where that right now" or the category that you speak of "i love this but why doesn't it ever feel right when i wear it?" i think you hit the mark and you look totally creative, not homeless at all! xo

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  9. fun layering! Glad you found the way. I have some pieces. Statement items that are finally just worn in the same combi with neutral piece. That's quite a challenge anyway and will make styling fun :)

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  10. So many wonderful layers!!! You look so warm and cozy, i am the worst at thinking "less is more" but then adding more and more and more. I love thick grandpa sweaters like this, so awesome!
    xJennaD

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  11. you are so right! this sweater is SOOO amazing i am seriously jealous :D :D love your style and look. Thanks so much for the lovely comment today and for visiting my blog! xoRachel

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  12. I love your cardigan. The design is so cool! You styled it great :)

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  13. Your writing is so fun and funny. Speaking of fun (but not funny...more like cute) is this outfit.

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  14. I love your amazing sweater!

    Carmen Ri.

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  15. Oh I like! Looks like a super cozy sweater!

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  16. You look so cozy here! I definitely need more grandpa cardigans in my life.
    I always have a hard time wearing bright red in my outfits. That might be a little weird, I guess. The only fist-pumping triumphs regarding this involve my red heels. Small doses, small doses.

    Rachel

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  17. Aw, I'm sad to hear that you find styling grandpa cardigans so difficult!! I actually love styling them and find them quite easy to slap on top of an outfit :)
    I wish I had some dramatic fist-pumping story to share... but I guess I just fist-pump my way through each day with the outfits I choose; no regrets!!

    Cassie
    thriftthick.blogspot.com

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  18. Great job triumphing over the sweater! You look adorable, that hat is perfect on you.

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  19. Oh, I just love the title to this post... and that sweater. I'd wear it even if I looked like a "homeless clown". lol! I can see how it would be hard to style, but I think you nailed it. Simplicity is key when a grandpa sweater is stealing the show. ;)

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  20. Gah, I love the plaid with the sweater SO much! I have a ton of trouble toning it down, as well. I always think of that Coco Chanel quote where she says to look in the mirror before you leave the house and take off one thing. I can never do it.

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  21. Your hair in this is just beautiful - I wish my hair would hold curls like that. I also love the outfit, especially the boots!

    Hebe xx

    http://thesehappyplaces.blogspot.com/

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  22. Haha- it's hobo clown grandpa chic! And it works so well! The cardigan is especially great- it really pulls everything together :)

    -Jen

    www.vibrantbeautyblog.com

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  23. This outfit looks so cute and warm!

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  24. your ensembles are always so cool. i especially love your hat!!

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  25. Love your outfit, less is more is definitely a mantra I try to stick by with my outfits as well. I have a gorgeous coat with a potentially obnoxious fur collar, and when wearing it, I have to keep the rest of my outfit neutral or I'd look too overdone.

    sartorialconnoisseur.blogspot.com

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  26. I'm obsessing over the cardigan! I can see how it might be a little hard to style, but you've pulled it off perfectly!! Hmm, I recently got a new pair of printed jeans, but they aren't quite as easy to match as I thought they would be. Hopefully I'll hit a stroke of genius soon! And I just now realized, but, dang!, 50 cents for a CK belt!?! You have just fired up my motivation to go thrifting!

    http://flyelephantfly.blogspot.com/

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  27. i love oversized jumpers!! i think you have pulled it off!! I love how you have pieced together all these items!!

    It has been awhile since I've posted or done a youtube video so please give me a lovely comment on my blog :) it would mean the world to me
    http://mrmrswalsh.blogspot.co.nz/2012/11/returning-back.html

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  28. I think you did a great job in styling it! :)

    x

    Marielle

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  29. You know, sometimes I kind of hate you for pulling off the things you do. I could never get away with wearing a sweater like this, yet on you it looks completely effortless (no one has to know you had trouble styling it) and makes me want to go out and buy one just like it. So not fair.

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  30. Love your blog!! Would love if you can check out mine,

    If you want to follow eachother will follow straight back on bloglovin' & GFC!

    www.kellyjade.co.uk

    xox Kelly

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  31. Love the sweater and your story!

    Yes I know how this feels too. In fact, last Saturday I scrambled around my room finding the perfect thanksgiving outfit to wear to my sister's for our early celebration. I had a great ribbed tank top I knew I wanted to wear some how, orange with yellow and brown flowers, all Autumnly delicious. I also had some mustard yellow tights I thought could be incorporated. Denim skirt light bulb! Nope, didn't work, ribbed tank top created the most hideous of muffin tops in the universe, skirt tossed aside, among another wreck of clothing ideas, like a polka dot skirt, three cardigans and pair of brown heels. What did I end up wearing? Black skinny jeans, ribbed orange floral tank top with an off-white open knit sweater over it. Kind of hid the pretty Fall colors up it peeked out the bottom just enough to satisfy my need to match the holiday. Besides, wearing tights to a pig out of your gourd function was just plain silly...

    xomando

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  32. I love your style! so cute.. and thanks for commenting on my blog! I'm following you now.

    iambornlippy.blogspot.com

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  33. Oh my gosh, you are sooooooo cute. And you have some mad layering skills! The pattern mixing is subtle, but yet, not so subtle. I don't know, but I love it. And the tights with the shorts are adorable.

    May the force be with you.
    Emily

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