Hello, Hi! It's been a long time!

I’m so happy to see you again! It feels wonderful to be back in this space.

The last time I talked to you here, Aaron and I were embarking on our nomadic dream life and moving to Seattle. 

Do you ever make big plans, then look back later and think:

“Well … that didn’t work out like I thought.” 

Me too. 

At first, it was the stuff dreams are made of. 

On the morning of May 1st, we squeezed into the car with our dog, Steve, and started off on our 5-day road trip from Texas to Seattle. Along the way, we got to stay in fun new places I’d never seen, like Marfa, Phoenix, Palm Springs, and Portland. 

Total dream.

We made it to Seattle, borrowed furniture, strung up lights, and called it home. We loved it.

Truth be told, our secret plan was to keep moving after that. Six months here, a year there. Just a couple of nomads, living the life.

All that changed about a month later. 

My mom called. She’d found a lump in her breast. 

It was cancer.

I cried on the phone with my mom that day. 

She had lost her best friend to breast cancer not two years before. 

We couldn’t wrap our minds around it—and honestly, we didn’t want to.

After we hung up, I vividly remember standing with Aaron in the kitchen of our apartment, numb. I wanted—needed—to be there for her. 

How are we going to make it work? I was asking. Should I fly back and forth each week to be with her for chemo?

None of my solutions were making much sense. 

And then Aaron squared my shoulders, looked right into my eyes, and said, “The answer is, we move back to Abilene.” 

I’d never been more grateful for him.  

We scrambled, and within a few weeks, we had moved back to our dusty little hometown in Texas—a place I never thought I’d live again. 

A “boring” place to live. 

Ever seen those t-shirts that say “Keep Austin Weird”? 

Abilene has t-shirts too. 

And they say “Keep Abilene Boring.” 

But … slowly … we started feeling intensely drawn to this small-town “boring” life. 

We ended up surprising ourselves—and shocking everyone around us—by putting down roots. We bought a little 1930’s fixer-upper and lived with my parents for three months while we restored it.

Living with my parents had it’s challenges, of course. But I wouldn’t have had it any other way because I got to be right there with my mom through surgeries, chemo treatments, and most importantly, the in-between stuff.

During those long days and nights at my parents’ house, the house I grew up in, I did a lot of soul-searching. 

I struggled. When you watch someone you love suffer, it’s hard to know what to do, how to feel.

Sad? Somber? 

Or,

Upbeat? Hopeful? 

I began to realize the answer isn’t either/or. 

It’s both

As much as we try to organize life into this or that, black or white, something always comes along and bumps into our carefully filled containers, spilling them.

They mix.

All at once, I felt this truth touch almost all areas of life. 

We are a little bit this and a little bit that. 

It made me think of Unfancy. Because that’s what Unfancy is too, isn’t it? It’s a place where two seemingly opposite ideas mix—fashion and contentment.

I love creating my style and finding that beautifully made piece that feels so me

…And…

I also love the peace that comes with deciding I have enough.

I had a feeling that a lot of you could identify with that mix too.

And it was then that I realized I had something on my heart again. Something to say. A conversation to share.

So that’s why I wanted to keep writing. To explore the mix. To move beyond a carefully-contained life. 

...

Aaron and I finally moved into our home right before Christmas. We didn’t have running water in the kitchen yet, and there were a million little things left to do, but we didn’t care — we were home. 

And soon after, my mom finished chemotherapy, and we cried again—this time happy tears—because all tests point to a full recovery. 

I’m so happy to get to tell you that she’s growing stronger and more vibrant every day. She’s like a new person, living more boldly than I’ve ever seen her. Experiencing this new phase with her is golden.

So … when I look back over the past 8 months, I think, “Well … that didn’t work out like I thought.” 

We aren’t nomads. We aren’t living in exciting cities.

But we feel like we’re where we belong—with the people we belong to.

And that was better than our plans. 

Not easier. 

But better.  

A few of you have been reaching out with questions, so I thought I’d go ahead and answer them here:

Q: Are you still living with a capsule?

A: Not in the way you’re used to seeing me do a capsule. I’m not filling out my wardrobe planner every three months. I’m not counting the number of pieces in my closet. 

Instead, I’ve let the structure fade and I’ve adopted the heart of it—smaller closet, intentional purchases, less shopping, and more joy. 

With everything that happened over the hiatus, I have to say that clothes were the last thing on my mind.

But you know what was great?

It was like all of the effort I put into creating an intentional wardrobe the year before paid off—at times I couldn’t focus any energy on getting cute, but I had this wonderful autopilot wardrobe there for me.

I had everything I needed + loved already. So no matter how stressful things were, I got the small joy of dressing + feeling like “myself.”

So it’s still paying off. I’m still wearing—and loving—almost all of the old pieces you saw on the blog before the hiatus. 

But I’d say I’m off the “capsule diet.” Now it’s just part of my lifestyle—like a healthy habit.

Q: What can we expect you to write about now on Unfancy?

A: It’ll be pretty similar, except I won’t be posting my capsule wardrobes each season. I know—it’s a bummer! But I’m excited to share my real journey with you—you know, the continuing story. And right now, for me, that means talking about what life + style looks like outside of the capsule structure you're used to seeing here.

You can still expect to see “unfancy” outfit ideas with every post. And we’ll still talk about a lot of the old things we used to talk about: clothes, confidence, creating your personal style, and building an intentional closet.

One thing will be different though, and I'm super excited about it: I’m really excited to start exploring slow fashion, introduce you to some small makers, and let you in on my inner journey with it all.

...

I'm just so glad to see you again. I know this post was super long—thanks for reading it. :)

Now, tell me, how have you been?!

(And hey, what do you think about the new site? If you catch any glitches or typos, email me at unfancyblog@gmail.com)

 

6.20 the unfanciest outfit

So here we are, the last post  ... for a while at least. I don't think we could have finished on a more "unfancy" outfit. A white tee and jeans. Finished out with a front tuck, rolled jeans, "no makeup" makeup, and kinda-messy hair. So plain -- so awesome.

I had big plans to end this post with something like, "Now, let's not get all sappy ..." but that's not going to work now. :)

I don't even know what to say after all of your kindness yesterday. Goodness.

From the warmest place in my heart: Thank you.

The words seem so flat as I type them, but I hope they jump out of the screen and land somewhere in your heart. It takes a pretty great human being to spend their precious time encouraging others -- thank you for being that person, yesterday and all along this entire journey.

Your words yesterday had me thinking:

Any time you use your words to add value to another human being, you are making the world better.

It sounds a little Pollyanna, but think about it.

When you feel loved + valued, it's easier to love + value others, right?

So every time you add value to a human being, you're starting a chain reaction. You're making it easier for them to love the next person in their path. And who knows -- that chain reaction might make it really far down the line, affecting people whose name you don't know, whose face you've never seen.

And it started with you.

So today, I hope you'll visualize that chain reaction, every time you share a kind word. Here's to starting more of them and making the world better, one person at a time.

See you in a few months.

Sending you so much love,

6.19 a time to reinvent, reimagine

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Scarf: Madewell / Jacket: Madewell / Tee: J.Crew / Shorts: old from Madewell (this year's version) / Shoes: old from Converse (similar) / Bag: Nordstrom

We're boxing up our house and getting ready for our big move to Seattle. Adventure is calling and the energy around our little apartment is contagious!

You know how when you move, you come face to face with all your stuff? Some of it you see every day. Some of it you haven't seen in months. You have to decide: Am I bringing this into the next house? Into the next season?

It's a refreshing time. A time to reinvent, reimagine. A time to get lost in possibility.

I didn't expect this to happen, but as I've been wrapping up our belongings and carefully fitting them into cardboard boxes, I've been reimagining things here at Unfancy too.

Have I ever shared the story of how I started blogging? 

It all started on my living room floor. I had just dropped my husband off at the airport for a three week business trip. We're close close, and the thought of not having him around for three weeks had me wiping away tears.

It also had me wondering: What could I do with my three weeks?

I knew that those weeks were an opportunity to do something. I wanted to do something meaningful. Something creative. Something fun.

I'd been playing around with capsule wardrobes for a few months, and the alone time seemed to be an awesome opportunity to share this idea that had so radically changed my life.

I remember Gilmore Girls was on TV in the background as I bought my domain, picked my template, and started tinkering around on Wordpress.

I wasn't sure how long I'd blog. My goal was simple: Start a conversation about contentment.

I made a pact with myself: The moment I feel like my part of the message is complete is the moment I step away ... at least for a little while ... because we grow and change and so do the messages we're supposed to carry. It's good to make room for that growth.

It's been one amazing year.

And ... at the moment, I feel like I've said all I need to say. In my heart, I know that my part of the message is complete. I want to honor this space and let it be -- instead of adding noise.

So for now, I'm taking a blog hiatus for about six months, while we're in Seattle. Tomorrow we'll say goodbye for a little while.

I wish I could tell you this news in person over coffee or a big ol' glass of wine. So I sat down with Jess Lively to talk more about the hiatus. You can hear that interview right here.

My hope is that it'll help you understand exactly where I'm coming from. In it, I share the deeper reasons behind the break, what's next for me, and my plans for when I come back to blogging.

Want to know what excites me most about this hiatus?

Stick with me here:

Capsule wardrobes are awesome because they are all about spending less time on clothes. I knew that starting Unfancy would mean that I'd actually spend more time on clothes, but I was happy to do that for a while because the concept is powerful + worth sharing.

But now, I'm really excited to devote less brain space to my closet. :)

Want to know the toughest thing about this hiatus?

Saying goodbye to you for a while.

You've been a part of my life every day for the past year. I'm going to miss sharing life with you.

Even though things will be quiet around the blog, let's keep hanging out on Instagram, okay? I'd love to connect with you there.

I want you to know: I'm so grateful for you -- thank you for hanging out here, spending your time with me, and joining in conversations. It makes me so happy that you were a part of this.

Thank you for seeing the best in me, and sharing the best in you.

See you tomorrow for one last outfit post.

Love,

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