A couple weeks ago, I started a new series called model mom style, to show you how working moms can look stylish and cool.
This week, my friend Erin is our model mom. I met Erin about ten years ago while we were in graduate school. I noticed her right away because she always looked fashionable and put together. We clicked because, we share a mutual interest in fashion, food, and education.
I wanted to feature Erin because her style is really modern and layering accessories is her signature. When she showed up for our shoot, I was so impressed with how she layered multiple accessories without looking overdone. Plus, those accessories really dressed up her more casual jeans, sweater and booties.
Erin, thanks so much for sharing your style with us; how do you define your personal style?
I like to think my style is sophisticated with a bit of edge, or at least that’s what I strive for! I can tell you what it’s not: bohemian or super girly. I don’t do lots of ruffles or bows, rarely wear pink, and I do things like wear a lace top under a leather jacket. I love edgy jewelry (I’m really into those “ear jackets” right now) and I’m not afraid of color. Admittedly, some days, comfort wins out. I’m glad the sporty look is on trend right now. I’m an active person and there are definitely days in my week when that’s the most practical way to dress.
This time of year, which is my favorite, I’m obsessed with three things: jeans, boots/booties and sweaters. Cool weather dressing is the best! I would wear jeans everyday if I could, so I have them in a wide variety of colors, styles, lengths– you name it. Most of my jeans are skinny jeans and I love to cuff them or get shorter styles so they stop just above a cute ankle boot. Speaking of which, I love ankle boots. I like something with a chunkier, stacked heel, but that isn’t too busy to keep it sophisticated (no more than one buckle, please!). I also love my jewelry box. I didn’t discover the power of accessories until my thirties.
What is your favorite ‘me time’ activity?
Like I mentioned, I’m an active person. I spend the vast majority of my free time keeping fit. I vary my forms of exercise, but right now I’m really enjoying Zumba classes and have begun experimenting with barre-type classes in addition to lifting weights and strength training. I also run regularly and have completed three half-marathons in the last couple years. I find exercise helps me sleep better, is a great stress reliever, and, perhaps most importantly, keeps me fitting into my ever-expanding wardrobe.
This is actually an area than I’m trying to get better with. I tend to get stuck in ruts when it comes to beauty products, or just be completely naive. (Back in college my mom stuck a pair of tweezers in my stocking and gave me a huge nudge in the ribs!) But, one thing I’ve been using daily for at least the last decade: Neutrogena Hand Cream.
I’ve recently made an effort to try new products. For example, changing from the same mineral powder foundation I’d been using since I was 22 and trying the Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer, which I’m really liking. I also refuse to wash my thin and fine hair with anything other than Big Sexy Hair shampoo and conditioner, and also spritz it with Healthy Sexy Hair beach spray when it’s still wet. It makes a noticeable difference compared to the products I’d been using since, oh, the late ‘90’s. Actually, one of the biggest changes I’ve made to my beauty routine in the last year was that I stopped washing my hair everyday—can’t live without my shower cap!
How do you find balance with working and being a mom?
I’m fortunate to work part-time and have a husband who has the flexibility to work from home several days per week. This ensures that one of us is home every afternoon after school to help with homework, supervise playdates and drive the kids to sports practices and so on. I also volunteer at my kids’ school both in the classroom and with a leadership role on the PTA. My kids are only young once and I’m so glad I’m able to be so involved in their lives.
However, I don’t think I would call what I have balanced at all. It’s far from perfect and not unusual for all these portions of my life to be competing for my time and attention. The best I can do to tame it all is try to keep a routine– always going into the office on the same days, taking exercise classes only in the mornings, driving to swim practice on the same days and so forth.
Most days in my office I need to dress at least business casual, if not lean towards professional. That being said, I HATE dress pants. I only own a couple pairs and rarely wear them. I also bend the rules and wear jeans—I guess I dress them up right; no one has said anything in all the years I’ve been doing it! My typical work uniform though: skirt/top/blazer or shift dress, statement necklace and, you guessed it, ankle booties or boots.
Sweater – Firth (similar)
Jeans – Current Elliot (similar)
Booties: Rachel Comey
Sunglasses: March by Marc Jacobs (similar)
Clutch: Marla London
Earrings: Rebecca Minkoff
Necklace: Stella & Dot
Wrap Bracelet: Stella & Dot
Triple V Ring: Stella & Dot
Gold Bracelet: Stella & Dot
Gold Bracelet: Michael Kors
Watch: Guess (similar)