April 23, 2017
I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! I had a great time catching up on the #Spring10x10 Challenge feed and reflecting on this latest experience. It seemed to go by in such a flurry that I hadn’t really had a moment to let it all sink in. Today my co-host Caroline of UnFancy and I will be recapping our experience with the challenge and sharing some of the key takeaways we’re keeping in mind as we move ahead with our style and closet intentions.
It wasn’t until I started re-reading through the #Spring10x10 posts that I realized the true extent of this community and how honest, positive and supportive it really is. I’m honoured that so many of you have been open to giving my random idea of picking 10 items, to wear in 10 looks over 10 days a try. Personally, I find the world of social media and blogging can be quite isolating but seeing how this challenge brings people together, from all over the world, in such a fun way feels inclusive, friendly and genuine. So thanks for trusting me and anyone else who encouraged you give it a go! From the looks of things it’s been a helpful exercise for many of you and I couldn’t be more appreciative of your participation! If you didn’t try it this time, no worries, maybe we can convince you to give it a go next time around!
Today’s recap post will cover:
- My 10 Items + All 10 Looks (In + Out)
- 5 Bonus Outfits
- My Personal Style Findings + General Takeaways
- 15 Fabulous Looks from the #Spring10x10 Feed
- Standout Insights from the 10×10 Community
- What’s Up Next on Style Bee
MY 10 ITEMS
These are the 10 items I chose to style into my 10 different looks.
1 | COGNAC SUEDE FLATS | L’Intervalle (2 months old) | $138 CAD | Made in Spain
2 | LINEN BUTTON DOWN | c/o Power of My People (new) | $165 CAD | Made responsibly in Canada | Today is the last day to receive 20% OFF sitewide! Use code: STYLEBEE. If your size is sold out, hang tight! Power of My People is working to restock the Wayward Shirt and when it’s back I’ll let you know so you can still use the code!
4 | SLIM BLACK PANT | c/o Nicole Bridger (new) | $194 CAD | Made responsibly in Canada of Blue Sign Certified fabric.
7 | SILK MIDI SKIRT | c/o Elizabeth Suzann (1 yr old, sold out) Check out the Clyde Skirt (raw silk broadcloth) | Made responsibly in USA | Linked to similar by Base Range ($210 USD) and similar in linen by Black Crane ($229)
8 | JERSEY TANK DRESS | c/o Eileen Fisher (4 months old) | $278 CAD | Made responsibly in USA
9 | MARS BOOT | Rachel Comey (6 months old) | $426 USD | Made in Peru
ALL 10 OUTFITS
10 OUTSIDE LOOKS
Check out the Outfits Archive for the full post on all these looks!
5 BONUS OUTFITS
Here’s a look at 5 bonus outfits I put together from my 10 Items. Now that the weather is warming up these are great options for the higher temps in the forecast. Honestly, I could have easily created another 5 looks in addition to these! I think that’s a really good indication that the pieces I chose were highly versatile and interchangeable.
PERSONAL STYLE FINDINGS
In general, this was my favourite challenge so far! I had so much fun with these looks and yet they still felt totally practical and wearable. Not to mention the fact that the weather was much more agreeable that during Winter. In past challenges there have always been a couple looks that felt off or uncomfortable in some way but not this time. I really enjoyed them all. In fact, I was so stuck on choosing my top 3 faves I decided to forget about it and just be happy with all 10!
You know what else is funny? After most challenges I’m desperate for full closet access and the day it’s over I dive back in. But this time, I actually kept wearing my 10 x 10 items for most of the weekend. In fact, I’m wearing my suede flats and vintage fit jeans right now with a button-down and a duster. I think this means I’m more content than ever with my options and it feels wonderful!
Here’s a quick snapshot of some of my personal style findings:
1 | LESS IS BETTER | I know I say this every time but I believe more than ever that having fewer options to choose from is a true stress reliever. Plus I felt as though all 10 items in my closet were being well utilized and it gave me a chance to really appreciate them more.
Going Forward: I’m inspired to pair my closet down even further. I did another closet edit this weekend and it already feels better to be rid of some ‘extras’ that I now know for certain I don’t need.
2 | A LITTLE OUTFIT PLANNING GOES A LONG WAY | I planned my outfits ahead of time each week since I needed to shoot them and I wanted to be sure I wasn’t missing any opportunities to try certain items a couple of ways. Knowing what I was going to wear in the morning was great and just like every challenge before, this was one of my favourite daily benefits.
Going Forward: I’m going to take a look at the forecast on Sunday and pull out some items I’m excited to wear for the week. I know I won’t have time to plan every detail but having a general guideline each week will be a huge help for sure.
3 | LAUNDRY IS A NECESSARY EVIL | I did have to do laundry more than normal but you know what, it wasn’t so bad. It meant that the pieces I like to wear weren’t spending a week or more crumpled in the base of a hamper. Instead they were getting refreshed and reworn right away. I washed everything once throughout the challenge.
Going Forward: I hate doing laundry because I leave it for too long and then it’s a huge task. My goal going forward is to try to take care of laundry as soon as I have a full-load worth of a certain colour. We’ll see how that goes!
4 | COAT OPTIONS MAKE LIFE WAY EASIER | Having a good selection of coats to choose from has been such a pleasure this Spring. It’s the first time I’ve felt like I really have a few that are functional and suit my style.
Going Forward: Coats are one category of my closet that gets a lot of use. I’m happy with my selection currently but going forward I’ll remember that investing in this area won’t go to waste!
5 | MY DAILY UNIFORM | I’ve known this for some time but my true go-to uniform is a simple top, a pair of pants, cute (comfy) shoes and a coat. No need to mess with that! I might throw a dress or a skirt in the mix for fun which is more than enough to keep it interesting.
Going Forward: I’m going to let my instincts guide my style choices for a while and see how it goes. I tend to try to ‘change it up’ for fear of boredom but I don’t think I will get tired of my go-to faves for a while yet.
You guys absolutely KILLED this Spring 10×10 challenge! I think it’s safe to say this was one of the best one’s yet. I was (and still am!) seriously so impressed with your brilliant styling and how you put pieces together. I was so honoured to see a few of my own style tricks making their way into your outfits too! Honestly I was agonizing over how to choose photos for this grid and had to literally set a timer for myself or I would have spent the entire day on it. So really, this is not my ‘favourites’ or necessarily the ‘best’ outfits, they were just the ones I managed to screen grab from the dozens of open tabs before the timer went off! That said, these looks are pretty freaking great.
Thanks again for putting yourselves out there and taking outfit photos for this challenge. I know it’s not exactly within everyone’s comfort zone but I truly believe it makes a big difference to see how our clothes are working on us and in action. Your candid opinions and thoughts on the challenge were so helpful too, as always. I love that this group is a place where we can share how style influences our daily life (for good and bad), ask for feedback and share openly. Not a space you come across often on the internet (esp. Instagram)!
Ps. I’m not exaggerating one bit when I say this is a seriously stunning feed of smart, stylish and thoughtful women. There were over 2000 posts from all over the globe during just this short 10 day span and it was so fun to see lots of familiar faces and discover many new ones too!
10 STANDOUT INSIGHTS FROM THE 10×10 COMMUNITY
1 | Pieces that are not team-players reveal themselves quickly. This challenge is a great way to test the versatility of different pieces. Those with too many conditions stick out like a sore thumb right away. This doesn’t mean they need to go, but it’s a good thing to keep in mind when adding new items. I got this one from the lovely and talented Elena Rosa Brown (@randomly_happy).
2 | Creativity Loves Constraint. This one comes up a lot every time and it’s so true. When we limit the number of things we have to work with, the more inventive we must be! This forces us to change things up and play around with new solutions.
3 | Shoe Options = versatility, practicality and more style freedom. I get it, trust me. I’m a shoe girl at heart and having my options limited to just 2 is non trivial for me. Many people chose to leave shoes out this time and that’s not cheating, it’s making the challenge guidelines work for you. Spring footwear is especially hard to predict!
4 | If not for the challenge some looks would have never happened. I loved reading that so many of you came across new combinations you love and might never have discovered otherwise! This another guaranteed result that makes this challenge so worthwhile.
5 | The 10×10 Challenge is a fabulous exercise for sewers. I was SO impressed by how many ‘me made’ and ‘sewn by me’ pieces there were in the challenge this time around. As it turns out it’s a perfect opportunity to test out your work and see how you might improve it or change your approach next time. This insight about white shirts from Morna (@style_of_constructing) was brilliant and she used it to improve her own design.
6 | Full Closet Appreciation. Sure, I might not have been dying for full closet access this time, but I certainly have on previous occasions and I know lots of you were this time. The great thing about the challenge is that when you do get full closet access back, it feels like you suddenly have unlimited options and clothes that may have been feeling ‘meh’ are suddenly much more appreciated.
7 | Style Rut Remedy. I personally love this challenge because it really helps you get out of a style rut and it seemed to do the same for many of the other people who joined in. Instead of turning to shopping for a momentary relief, it lets you reinvest in your existing closet and find new ways to work with and appreciate what you already have.
8 | Uncovered New Closet Heroes. I loved reading how many people were surprised by how versatile some items ended up being. Pieces you might have included on a whim end up being more wearable than you thought! Ally Hird (@allyhird) had a great note about this when she said:
‘It just shows that sometimes pieces that may seem a bit too ‘fashion’ to be readily or frequently wearable may quickly become wardrobe workhorses.’
9 | The Weather Makes All the Difference. This is true. The more temperate your climate the easier it will be to plan looks and deal with layers. But it’s called a challenge for a reason right? Personally, I loved that I still had access to coats and think it’s worth considering a contingency plan like that when you start out. Then there’s no feeling of ‘cheating’ or having to make drastic revisions to your options.
10 | Increased personal style confidence. I was thrilled to see how many of you felt that your confidence in personal style had increased throughout the challenge. That’s truly what it’s all about! Margaret (@river_margaret) put it so well when she wrote:
‘Most importantly, my confidence in my personal style increased, and my apprehension over what other people might think decreased. Kind of ironic in this forum driven by “likes”, but a lovely outcome for me.’
What was one (or more) of your main takeaways from the 10×10 Challenge?
If you’ve done more than one challenge, how did this one differ from your previous experience?
I’d love to read your thoughts on the experience!
THIS WEEK: I’ll be taking it easy as far as blogging this week but I’ve got a fun collaboration with ETSY Canada on deck for Friday!
DURING MAY: I’m looking forward to starting the month off with a Closet Mission Check-in and following that up with lots of outfit posts! Each week I’ll be picking 1 item and styling it into 3 outfits. Not to mention some other Closet Mission ideas I’m currently cooking up! There will also be a Style Bee Closet sale soon! Follow @stylebeecloset for updates.
If you’ve got any post requests I’d be more than happy to hear them, so let me know in the comments.
SUMMER 10×10: A Summer 10×10 Challenge is happening! Logistics and timing are TBD but I’ll be sure to let you know as soon as that’s worked out.
Thanks again to my amazing co-host Caroline Joy Rector of UnFancy for wonderful 10×10 Challenge and to all of you who joined in and followed along!
You made this challenge the best one yet!
Here’s to the next one!
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