You have to stop and smell the roses!
I’ve found that trying to tell people about how it was to grow up and live in China is pretty difficult. A lot has to do with the fact that there isn’t just one China. There’s the China of Shanghai and Beijing that most westerners think of. Huge skyscrapers, designer shops, expensive cars and the country’s rich and famous show up in movies and TV shows on a regular basis. But it’s a big country and there are a lot of places that are quite different. Where I grew up in the northeast part of the country there was and still is a lot of dirt. Farms are everywhere and in the old small villages even some of the houses still had dirt floors. So growing up I was constantly trying to clean dirt out of somewhere. My fingernails were always hiding reminders of our garden or helping on the local farm. As soon as I graduated I got away as fast as I could. Give me the concrete and neon of the big city! I loved the malls, subways and paved streets of Shanghai. So I’m still surprised at myself when after moving to America and having my own yard that I found out I love to garden! Now I can spend hours pulling weeds or pruning and planting flowers. Even during the winter I have lots of indoor plants and am always tending to them. I guess it’s different when it’s your garden and you get to enjoy the sights and smells as your reward. Maybe a bit of dirt under my finger nails isn’t the worst thing that can happen. And of course it just gives me a better excuse for a nice manicure!
This week I’m continuing with my Valentine’s Day suggestions. As I’ve stated before, my go to choice for an instant dinner worthy outfit is a dress. You really can’t beat it for a quick one stop shop. There’s no need to coordinate skirts and blouses or tops and pants. This time I wanted to create a very happy and sweet Valentine’s Day vibe, so picked a colorful floral pattern sweater dress. For non-supermodel women like me who haven’t been gifted with a perfect body, a good fitting dress is a great choice. A sweater dress has a lot going for it, in addition to keeping you warm in the February weather. These pieces have their own structure and still let you catch your breath by not fitting too tight. This actually helps to compliment the figure you do have.
A bright colorful floral pattern on a dress attracts the right kind of attention while it helps to conceal any imperfections. When choosing any pattern for a small frame, you should try to make sure it’s not too big. If it is a large pattern, then the key is to not have it cover the entire piece. A petite person like me could look like they’ve disappeared in a sea of flowers or some other design. As you can see, my dress features large flowers but also has a lot of open white space to keep the look elegant and clean. Since the floral pattern is already pretty bright and bold, I didn’t need a lot of other color. As always, I like to let the pattern on my focus piece give me my inspiration for the rest of the outfit. The dominant color in the floral design was blue, so I grabbed my bright blue velvet bag and blue suede heeled pumps. This dress gave me lots of choices and I could just as easily have gone with purple, red, orange or yellow. I wanted to keep a warm and happy vibe, so covered up with my bright yellow coat. After all, there’s nothing that flowers love more than a cheerful ray of sunshine! And if this coat looks familiar you may have see it with other outfits here, here, !
Yellow coat @Macy’s
Sweater dress @China Trip!
Purse @Saks 5th Avenue
Blue pumps @Nordstrom Rack