Leather Weather

Well, hello there. I’m not going to ask if you missed me or my posts, but it’s been awhile. (I missed you!) Not sure what kind of social media funk I was in, but it seems to have lifted with the crisp autumn air that’s finally arrived. Which gave me the perfect reason to pair these amazing black leather jeans (splurge alert!) with a cozy sweater and teddy coat, as well as some covetable accessories. Happy Fall, y’all!

This has been an interesting fall for me. On the professional side, work has been sparse but inspiring, so I am hoping some of these intriguing projects pay off with bigger and better creative explorations in the months ahead. On the personal side, I just attended my 40th college reunion (gasp!) and had a fantastic time meeting up with old friends, as well as confronting some of the ghosts of my past. One of those dear friends suddenly dropped dead of a heart attack in the past year, so you really start to grasp that our time here is not something to be taken for granted but rather treasured. Along with every wrinkle, age spot, belly roll, aching back, fallen arch, high cholesterol or blood pressure. Not to mention even more serious physical and mental issues. We’re here. And we better appreciate — and live — every day to the fullest.

So at this moment it feels a bit silly to talk fall fashion, but for me that is one of life’s pleasures. Whether I’m splurging on a new must-have, finding fab affordable deals I just have to share, or shopping my closet, dressing up or down is a fun, creative, ever-changing outlet for my mood, the moment.

The absolute anchor of this outfit are these sleek, chic leather jeans. Adore might be too low key of a description! They were a total indulgence but are also the perfect example of “Retail Math.” What is that? Per Stylist Susie Wright @ www.sosusie, it’s an interesting way to justify high-priced items that are big initial investments but pay off over the long haul. So if I wear these jeans once a week through October to April, they will be costing me well under $20 a wear. My head is already spinning with all the ways to dress them up or down. And for me, that makes skipping Starbuck’s and bagging lunch totally worth it. As much as I love these black leather jeans, I’ve also linked some more affordable and pleather (vegan) options.

For the rest of my look, it’s a mix of mostly new. Like this cozy, fuzzy, cuddly zebra stripe sweater, one-and-only Gucci loafers (more Retail Math!), sparkly choker, and top-handle leather bag from a new brand, DeMellier, that is a favorite of the British royals. Designed in London and made in Spain, these bags give (IMHO) other extravagantly priced designer bags so many bloggers are carrying a real run for their money.

Topping it all off, my Avec Les Filles teddy coat score from last winter. I was so happy to see it once again when I switched over my closet a few weeks ago, not to mention luxuriating in its plush polish now that temps have dropped. It’s a semi-splurge that has already stood the test of time. Again, I’ve linked some great alternative options below.

Jeans: (Frame, I kept them on my radar and bought them during a 20% off cardholders sale. I also sized up one size.) Super sleek alternatives here, here and here.

Sweater: (Wild Fable x Target) Similar here (25% off with code COZYCOMFY), here (red and 30% off!) and here (40% off with code FAMILY).

Shoes: (Gucci — this Brixton convertible Loafer is so versatile, because the heel folds down to turn them into mules! And they are as comfortable as slippers…but way more cool. I have them in black, too. ) Affordable alternatives here and here (also in a cool snake combo, black and saddle).

Bag: (DeMellier, 14 color options!) Similar here (50% off with code 50NOW and here (now 30% off and lots of colors!).

Necklace: (Loft)

Coat: (old, Avec Les Filles) Loving this (moto style at an incredible price!!!, this and this, too.

Photos by Kristin Moore=Gantz.

Shot on location at Hudson Hall in downtown JC, a draft house serving craft brews and European-inspired fare including smokehouse-inspired meats. Kristin and I shared a post-shoot Reuben, and it was heaven! And totally worth the next day’s extra time on the treadmill!!

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