Casual Glamour

Dec 20, 2013

DRESS: Zara's (similarish here and here)| HAT: c/o Fall Code (get the same one here)| BOOTS: Macy's (similar here)| SWEATER: French Connection (similar here and here)| BACKPACK: c/o La Poule Noire

I wanted to thank you guys for all the sweet comments and hugs you sent my way yesterday- it's so awesome to know I have such amazing friends on here that are quick to console me when I'm down :) And this week has been going pretty well where I'm basically forcing my whole house to get into the Christmas spirit. I armed myself by stocking the kitchen cupboards with hot chocolate and marshmallows, cramming our DVR with both holiday classics and cheesy Hallmark Christmas movies alike, and leaving scraps of wrapping paper here and there to let them know presents are being wrapped and addressed. And while I'm spending loads of time with my family, I also have a friends' Christmas dinner tomorrow which I'm so excited about! We decided to pretend to be adults and made a formal potluck dinner where we can drink copious amounts of spiced wine while simultaneously eating what we hope to be a non-burned decent feast haha. Hopefully my ham won't give anyone food poisoning...

And while I'm still (im)patiently waiting for my boxes of clothes to arrive from the move, I decided to flex my styling muscles and played with the measly amount of clothes I had hanging in my closet. One look I have always loved was combining super fancy pieces with casual ones- the contrast is just so playful and cute! So I took my formal Zara's maxi and shrugged on a loose fitting grey sweater and swung my leather La Poule Noire backpack onto my shoulder to bring the glitz and glamour down a few notches. I love how it turned out! And if you like my backpack make sure to check out La Poule Noire here- they have hundreds of boots and bags and bohemian inspired clothing :)


And here are some of my favorite picks from La Poule Noire to give you an idea what they have: 


dressed-dark cut-and-chic

Follow Messages on a Napkin on:



  1. Love how you combined such a casual sweater with that stunning dress! xx

  2. That is a GREAT dress, it is just so cool looking.

    Allie of ALLIE NYC

  3. oh Marlen, you are the queenie of mixing formal with casual! seriously, makes me wanna get out some fancy dresses and throw a sweater on 'em. Mine are so bedazzled, though... 8th grade prom anyone? I looked like a mermaid.

    I love the pattern on that dress. HAPPY ALMOST CHRISTMAS AH!!!

  4. Awesome pics :D
    Great job!
    Your outfit it's cool too

  5. That dress is simply beautiful.
    Loved the outfit♥

  6. I love this dress and sweater combo!
    Lisa | c/oMKE

  7. Oh man, I love everything about this! The bright red with the watercolor-y neutral tones, the combination of glam and casual that you mentioned--it all looks great!

  8. it kind of sounds like a no brainer now that you mention it, but i'm not sure that i've ever dressed down a formal dress. i think i'm usually taking a "normal" piece and trying to make it work for something fancier usually. i love that beanie & backpack w/ it! and now i'll have to get caught up and check out this post from yesterday.

  9. The backpack is awesome! I just checked their website, they have some rad finds *_* This is probably my favorite outfit in the whole world! I love mixing fancy pieces with casual ones and this just kicks butt! :D

  10. Ahhhh yesss, gotta love mixing formal pieces with more casual ones! And nothing like a sweater to make this gorgeous dress perfect for day wear :)
    So glad to hear you're in such a festive spirit - nothing like being surrounded by loved ones! Best wishes to you and your family Marlen. I can't believe it's almost Christmas already! Then 2014 around the corner 0_o

    The Dragonfruit Diaries

  11. nice!:) xo

  12. Oh wow, there's something about this outfit that I just love! What the beanie and sweatshirt do for this dress creates such an interesting look!
    This Ever Evolving Life

  13. I love the idea of dressing down a glamorous dress- and you've done it so nicely! The pleats are stunning and the contrast with the sweatshirt is ultra cool. Creative and fun, as always! xo


  14. that is the coolest dress! You make me want to dress better!

  15. You look lovely, Marlen! Glad you're getting some Christmas cheer in your household. Keep it up! You'll be glad you did.

    Love, Amy

  16. I love how you layered a sweater over a that dress! :) It`s great way to wear a dress during winter and autumn, isn't it? :) Cute beanie too! Happy holidays dear and hope you're feeling better! xx

    Chic Nikkie
    Bloglovin' | Facebook

  17. What a great dress! Love the pattern and colors.

  18. This look is stunning! I love how you mixed the more glamourous dress with the casual piece. And that red hat is such a great colour on you!

  19. I love the awesome layering you've got going on here. I would have never have guessed that you didn't have your whole close to work with. You look gorgeous.

  20. This outfit is amazing! You totally look like a New York City girl! Your red beanie is adorable paired with your neutral-toned outfit.

    Xo, Hannah


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