Spring, come she will

Hello, hello! This week we’re conducting a little interview with Josh covering all things fashion, personal taste, and an attempt at our first themed week.

The unseasonably warm weather had us yearning for budding trees, bare foot strolls, and naps in the sunshine. So we started the week by heading to Longwood Gardens! It was Josh’s first time, and my nature lover thought he had died and gone to horticulture heaven! He instantly grabbed the camera and started snapping pictures of the stunning colors, shapes, and bizarre plants… Only to find out, as many photographers do, that capturing nature is one of the most frustrating photography experiences one can have. It’s pretty hard to capture the splendor of God’s handiwork with a middle-of-the-line Canon T3.

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But we still had fun trying.

I also had fun blending in with my surroundings… Like a flower ninja.

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But the best part…

img_1217… My Balenciaga leather sneaks which are NEON YELLOW. As you can (blindingly) see.

These were one of my Joan Shepp purchases from last week, and I’m pretty sure I might wear them to my grave I love them so much.

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So, after this garden trip, the rest of the week was fairly boring.  So, in leau of having very little to write about, I’m calling in Josh for a brief interview… After I get a glass of wine.

Hi, thanks for joining me. Pleasure to have your company on this fine night. So, Josh. What single word describes your style?

Thank you for having me! It’s an honor just to be in your presence. My style? Oh boy… one word?? Lively. 

How do you think other people would describe your style, say, in college?

In college I was “That guy that’s always barefoot and has a bone in his ear.” I think in general I kind of looked like a street urchin mixed with a tree hugger. Lots of color, layers, and jewelry. Typically unclean… much to the chagrin of my roommates.

And whilst we’re on the subject of your style, where do you get inspiration?

A few places I suppose. Nature is one of them. I love clothing and outfits that remind me of either creatures in nature (birds, beetles, moss) or specific locations with extreme natural beauty like Moab, UT. Another “inspiration” of mine would probably be different people groups throughout history. Examples would be European gypsies, Mayans, and Native Americans. 

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What tip would you give to anyone looking to improve their personal style?

To start? Just let go. Sit in front of your closet and forget the “rules” of what is normal or “fashionable.” Let yourself be creative and make weird combinations of clothes just because you like the way it looks or feels. Because of this blog I have had to do a lot of research to figure out what types of style there is out there. People wear some WEIRD stuff. And it seems like those “weird” things are often what end up coming into style eventually. So… go out on a limb and make something that’s yours!

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Are there any styles or eras of fashion you’ve wanted to replicate, but haven’t had the inspiration or resources? 

Oh probably more than I can think of right now. I ought to start writing them down. One that immediately comes to mind is the 1920’s flapper look. You know… sequin dress, fancy hat, bright red lipstick, and elbow length gloves. I would have to find the right pieces to make sure it didn’t just look like a Halloween costume but I think it’s a great, sassy/elegant, look.

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What three outfits have you been the most proud of?

 I love the outfit with the camo pants and leather vest. I liked that it mixed masculine and feminine attributes (the baggy pants along with the heels). I wanted to create an outfit that combined leather, denim and camo, and this is what I came up with.  I also love the outfit that had the blue patterned vest over the blue striped pants with the floppy brown hat. I liked the different patterns on that one. I worried that the vertical stripes paired with the southwestern pattern would be too busy, but I think they matched well together. And I’m partial to the outfit when I combined my Mom’s oriental robe with the black beret and fur collar. Obvious sentimental reasons there but I also thought it looked dang good on her. 

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What’s your least favorite part of this blog, and why?

HA. Taking the pictures. I have ZERO experience with photography and, now that Megan works around great photographers for a living, she knows what constitutes a great picture and I am just working as fast as I can to catch up. I’m not fast enough. This leads to a lot of frustration from  both of us. The pictures we put on here are decent though, right (please say yes)? But for each one of these there are 50 or more that had to be discarded. 

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At the start of this week, we decided to try having a theme.  In your words, how would you describe the overarching theme?

Wonder of wonders! Over 70 degrees outside in February? That sure screamed “Spring” to us. Because of the glorious weather and the fact that I am starting a new job tomorrow (and we’re moving next month, etc.) we decided on a “Spring” theme. We recognize that we are moving into a new season (literally and figuratively) and we are very grateful for the change. We believe it will breathe new life into our relationship and our every day existence. Kind of like how the flowers push up through the frost. I tried to capture some of that imagery and feeling in this week’s outfits by emphasizing floral prints and bright colors. Two of the more neutral colored outfits have very intentional splashes of color in them which, in my mind, was a nod to life springing out of the clutches of winter. 

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Sounds cool, but follow through was kind of tough for you… Want to elaborate on that? 

Yeah it was stinking hard some days. First of all, Megan and I had different ideas about what qualifies something as “spring” from a clothing perspective. I didn’t actually sit down and clearly define what dressing for a spring theme looked like. Because my thoughts on spring were so abstract there was a lot of frustration. I would have an idea for an outfit that I really liked only to have Megan point out that it would work great if only it were being worn on a bleak January morning… or on a boardwalk in August.

 

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If you could have access to any (male) person’s wardrobe, who would it be? 

For my own use? Keith Richards. Or Johnny Depp. Or Saul Goodman from Breaking Bad. 

And finally, what skills or uses do you think this blog will lend you after the year is over? 

I think it’s going to help me keep my creative juices flowing, out of habit. It’s also teaching me how to be a better photographer. I also truly believe this project is and will strengthen our marital bond (via grace, patience, persistence) in a way we didn’t expect. Plus, it’ll be wild to share this unique project with our children and prove to them that we weren’t always so lame.  

We love you, readers! Thanks for your comments, and feel free to share our post. We’d love to grow our audience. Makes it more fun for us 🙂

Tune in next week for Josh dressing me for a brief trip to LA! Sunshine and shorts, here I come. (After I shave.)

Love,

Meg

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By Design.

A home can carry as many memories, security and familiarity as a person- as can a city. If you’ve ever had to say goodbye to a place you’ve loved dearly, you can relate to the painful nostalgia that comes with such a departing. In a month, Josh and I will be parting from both our little apartment and what has become one of our favorite cities: The City of Brotherly Love. Good old Philadelphia.

This is bitter sweet. The move is stemming from a job change for Josh (yay!) which has us relocating to the small town of Parkesburg, PA (tears and gnashing of teeth). We’ve already found a lovely apartment complete with wood floors and tons of natural light. To top that, we discovered we’re in walking distance from Victory Brewing (YASSS) and we can keep all of our pets! God is good.

To commemorate the move, we headed to the city to shoot the weeks’ set of outfits. But the primary reason we went was to visit a very special boutique… And one eclectic designer.

I was first introduced to the world of high-fashion through Joan Shepp and her boutique. It started with an opportunity to model a private runway show at the boutique. When an opportunity for a second show came around, I knew I had to bring Josh. As much as I had begun developing a deep appreciation for fashion, I knew Josh would love the wide selection of avant-garde designer items even more.

Long story short, when Josh arrived separately,  he was greeted by Joan Shepp herself. Unaware that Josh was my husband, she greeted him warmly and asked: “How long have you been in the fashion industry?” After Josh told her he wasn’t, she responded by saying, “Only an artist would wear that,” pointing to the scarf tied around his waist.

When Josh recounted this interaction to me later that evening, I tucked Joan’s compliment away for future use.  knew Josh had style, but apparently, so did a iconic fashion designer.

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Joan Shepp and Joshua

 

Josh has a deep fear of losing his underutilized creative gifts. Working from home has meant a staple of gym shorts and a band shirt as opposed to the costumes he so frequently wore during our college years. Our limited living space kept him from playing his beloved drum set, and work-related apathy stood in the way of the usual joy he took in exploring other art forms.

 

 

As much as I would encourage Josh to pursue any form of expression to get his creative juices flowing, he was truly in a rut. Joan’s compliment affirmed what I knew to be true: Josh couldn’t stop being an artist even if he wanted to. And gosh darn it, I was going to find a way to make our own outlet.

This blog has provided just that. So, to come full circle, two months into our creative venture, we headed to Philly to say a fond farewell, thank the designer who saw Josh as the creative soul he is… and to do some shopping.

 

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My QVC model friend, Ade (the woman who introduced me to Joan), joined us and definitely had an influence on our favorite buy of the day. Josh insists I can’t show you, because he’s saving it for a specific outfit. So these are just some shots of the outfits we might have bought had my store credit been a bit beefier.

 

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Style icon and friend, @adejaiye

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I cannot wait to show you what we purchased! But I (begrudgingly) must submit to Josh’s timing. If it were my choice, I would wear the contents of that bag for the next two months straight. Which is why it’s good that it’s not up to me.

We’ve had a few people ask to hear from Josh more often about the outfits he’s picked for me, so I’m handing him the mic, metaphorically speaking. Enjoy!


Wow. So this is what it’s like to write on our blog huh? Yikes. I’m a bit daunted right now to tell you the truth. And yet… I’m suddenly filled with an unmistakable surge of power. FEAR ME! Just kidding… But that IS what I say to Megan every day as she puts on the day’s outfit that she has no choice but to wear. I am Caesar as far as the closet is concerned.

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So this little number above? To be honest, I don’t have too much of an explanation for it. It has the flowy skirt, gypsy-ish belt, and the cool, heavy, necklace of a common hippie/bohemian look. But it’s also more winterized and form fitting then some boho outfits. Also I wanted the purple/mustard combo.

The following outfit is brought to you by New York City Fashion Week. I was inspired by the classy street-style I saw when we were there and I wanted to give it a shot. What do you think, eh? I love these pants on Megan, but since they’re wide-fitting, I wanted to make sure she had a more formfitting top. Gold and white belt? To match the gold chain mail necklace of course.

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Have you heard of color blocking? If not, you should definitely look into it to add some funk to your style. It can be beautiful, wild, and fun all at once. This outfit was meant to be a baby step in that direction. Denim on denim is already cool by itself but then why not add a blast of firetruck red?

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Okay I hate to toot my own horn here but… look at this shot. “But wait, I thought Josh was a pretty inadequate photographer” you say? Well… Josh is blossoming. 

These last two outfits are my favorites from this week. This next outfit I called “western boho.” I loved how simple it was and yet how stunningly she pulled it off. I feel like she needs a six shooter on her hip though. Next time…

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I have a pair of baggy camo pants that Meg’s brother gave me and I was determined to make them work on her. So what do you pair with camo? Denim and leather, baby. It helped that the two jackets were tight because that offset the baggy pantaloons. And the studded heels? Uh… everyone knows that baggy pants with heels is babeilicious. 

*Drops the mic*

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Well, well. Josh might have to take this over more often.

The changes coming down the pike will definitely effect how we approach this blog. I have no idea what that will look like, but Josh will be working longer hours, and we won’t be seeing as much of each other as we have this past year. Improvise, adapt, and overcome!

As we reflect on the move, this blog, and our shared love of creating together, I cannot help but believe that it is all by design. I’m grateful for a Creator who’s plans are bigger, better, and so, so intricate.

That’s all for now folks! Thanks for reading, and tune in next week for who knows what. We don’t really plan ahead.

Love,

Meg

Do geckos mate for life?

It started off as a normal Monday in the Morken household. I woke up super early to head to D.C. to do a runway event, leaving Josh to plan an outfit for the day post-show. The show was and in-and-out event, and I was on my way back by 2pm. At some point during the three hour drive home, I got a text from hubby.

“I need you to pick up two things if you can… Gecko food and a plunger… Haha.”

Knowing that there is only one reason to ever need a plunger, my mind instantly swirled with images of the inevitable travesty waiting at home. I was interrupted by a call from Josh.

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Suffice it to say that after the initial toilet clogging, Josh finished off the leftover buffalo wings from the Super Bowl. This resulted in a panicked rush to the bathroom and some quick decision making.  Faced with an already overflowing toilet, he did what any desperate man would do. He grabbed a trash bag.

In between my laughter and groans, I couldn’t help but fall deeper in love with my husband, his self-deprecating humor, and resourcefulness.

And that was only Monday!

 

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Tuesday was also filled with unwanted bodily functions, as my all-black snazzy outfit was puked on by a baby. After this mishap, I realized our blog rules don’t specify a need for two outfits in the event of unforeseen spillage. So sweatpants it was.

 

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It was an impressive start to the week, and it only got better when Josh and I caught our Crested Geckos in the act of… Creating new life.

Yeah, so in case you didn’t know what that looked like, I figured we would provide you with documentation. Bow-chicka-wow-wow.

 

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Ah… The Circle of Life.

In the midst of all this hilarity, I was doing some serious thinking. I had had a wonderful conversation with my parents about our blog last Sunday, and they gave me a challenge: To nail down the  purpose of this blog.

 

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We jumped in to this year without much time to prepare a mission statement. For the first few weeks, the lack of direction didn’t really matter- we were excited, having fun, and figured it would develop direction as we went along.  And it has, through a process of elimination. We know why we’re not doing this blog. We’re not doing it purely because it’s fun. It’s actually pretty not fun. It takes a lot of effort on Josh’s part, time, which we don’t have a ton of, and grace for each other. That last one is probably the biggest hurdle, as is true to marriage in general.

 

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We’re also not doing this because Josh has a burning passion for fashion, styling, or clothing. Josh has an eye for style and is one of the most creative individuals I know. But we’re not here to compete with fashion bloggers, up-and-coming designers, or showcase our knowledge of latest trends.

 

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The purpose of this year is to have fun exploring our talents as a married couple. We both wanted to develop creatively: For me, in the form of my writing, and for Josh, exploring fashion as a means of artistic expression. This blog idea was born when we realized how perfectly this project combined those interests.

Bonus: the amount of grace and forgiveness we’ve needed to give and receive from each other has already deepened our marriage. Which is honestly enough to make the whole year worthwhile.

Along the way, we’re sure to make some crazy memories! This week, we’re enjoying a weekend in New York City for some fashion shows.

 

 

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We went with some dear friends, and met up with the designers and creators of Urban Southern (check out that market tote… O B S E S S E D.) It was an honor to support them at their first fashion show!

 

 

 

The rest of the weekend was mostly filled with trips to China Town to drink bubble tea and visit fish markets.

 

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Can we all agree that Joshua’s New York City outfits were a stellar success? It was a wonderful weekend, but we are ready to be back in our cozy home, where we can relax, pet our cat and watch for lizard eggs show up.

Love,

Meg

P.S. No. Geckos do not mate for life.

Paris -> NYC

Happy Super Bowl Sunday!

Personally, I’m more inclined to watch the Kitten Bowl. Josh did not know what this amazing phenomenon was, so I had to interrupt my blogging to show him a clip from the 2016 Kitten Bowl.

Nevertheless, thank you, football lovers, for giving us ball-bored others an opportunity to partake in basically a second Thanksgiving. Can I get an amen, and pass the wings, please.

 

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Although we’re freshly unpacked from our Paris trip, Josh is re-packing my suitcase for New York City Fashion Week! We were graciously invited by Urban Southern to join them for their shows. It’ll be a first time experience for both of us, and although we won’t have access to the fashion shows I’m dying to attend someday,  we’ll be there.

 

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But the best part? Josh is going shopping to dress me for NYCFW. Oh. Yeah. Seriously, this blog is the best idea I’ve ever had. I can’t tell you how many times Josh has said, “I really want to put together this look for you, but we need to get you…” fill in the blank.

Oh, twist my arm. You’re so right, babe. “We” really do need to invest in a leather bomber. And yes,”we” really do need a whole new wardrobe if we’re going to a fashion show together.

Obviously he takes this year-long challenge pretty seriously.

 

 

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Because you need to know that my scarf has pockets.

 

NYFW isn’t until next week, though. And after we were graciously invited, we still had to get through this week… and we were seriously ready for the weekend. Taking pictures every day is stressful.  Seriously considering putting an ad for a full time photographer on Craigslist.

 

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Just a minute ago, I was scrolling back through my first and second blog posts, curious to see any changes in Josh’s styling then and now.  He’s had 30+ days of having to plan ahead, envision looks, and piece together my outfits. It’s been a trial and error process, to be sure.

One characteristic stood out: Josh has a keen interest in the little details. He shows the same attention to detail with his hobbies and own style, so I shouldn’t be surprised. But not everyone notices interesting subtleties. I didn’t even catch how he matched the blue yarn and feathers in this hat and necklace until I was looking at the picture.

 

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Ah, this outfit… It seems a bit underwhelming for Josh’s style, doesn’t it?

That’s because I influenced his choice for this day. Now, before you jump to conclusions, technically we didn’t break any rules for this day! I had a fitting in D.C. that morning, and I was running late and without an outfit (it was a busy week).

 

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While Josh was scrambling to put something together, I was nosing around him, suggesting ideas: “Use my black pants, they’ll go with anything. No, not those shoes, I need heels for a fitting! No not those, I have to be able to walk for awhile! Not that shirt, I have to get out of it easily without getting makeup on the shirt. Button-down, Josh, I need a button-down!”

Well, my “suggestions” severely limited his choices. So guess what? I ended up looking like I had dressed myself. ‘Cause… I kind of did. And guess what else? It was functional for my fitting, but as an outfit belonging to a fashion blog, it was meh.

 

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So, we’re a month in. All is well, but we’re running low on blog ideas. I’ve started compiling a list of potential future posts, but I’d love to know: What do you want to see more of in these weekly posts? Some options include…

  1. Having Josh co-write and add his thoughts on each outfit
  2. Weekly themes (50’s week, how-to week, etc.)
  3. More live videos of Josh putting outfits together, being interviewed, etc.
  4. Insight into the creative process behind this blog
  5. Fun give-aways/contests

Comment below and let me know what you think!

Okay, back to fashion. This was our collective favorite outfit from this week.

 

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Who wore it better? 😉

 

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Josh and I have been staring at the screen for ten minutes trying to think of a conclusion to this post. That’s just the type of week it’s been.

I give up. Time to put this away and go watch the commercials.

 

Love,

Meg