Well, I’ve officially stepped out of my living room! I’ve never taken outfit photos “out and about” — until now. This is a fun day. :)
Indulge me for a second. Did you know that when I started Unfancy in 2014, Aaron and I shot all the Unfancy photos in our tiny, one bedroom apartment? Yep, we’d set up a backdrop that took up the entire living/dining/kitchen space — it turned our apartment upside down for days. Hah! Good times.
When we moved to Abilene a few years later, we ditched the backdrop and decided to shoot in a pretty little corner of our living room.
It worked fine at first, but after a little while, I started to feel stiff, standing in that same little corner again and again. On top of that, the only way Aaron could get me in frame was to squish into the corner opposite me. Since neither of us could move around freely in our small living room, the photos started to feel a little … stale.
So, a couple months ago, we started tossing around the idea of taking photos outside.
Honestly, it took me a while to warm up to the idea, because while most style bloggers take “out and about” photos, I always felt good keeping things simple and shooting in the living room. I liked that I was doing my own thing.
But, we humans change over time, and that means “doing our own thing” starts to change too.
Lately, I’ve been drawn to a more lighthearted, carefree vibe — and I want to reflect that spirit in my photos. So this weekend, we took photos out in the fresh air!
Yes, I feel like the world’s biggest goober, posing for pictures when random people can see me. But on the upside, there’s plenty of space to move and play. And plenty of opportunities to learn to laugh at myself when I feel awkward or nervous.
You’ll still see some living room photos here and there, but for the most part, we’re going to try this whole “out and about” thing for a while and see how it goes.
So here’s to trying new things, getting out of comfort zones, and even feeling like a goober. :)
Thanks for indulging all my storytelling.
Now onto this outfit! Since we’ll be looking at this dress all week, I’ll be brief today.
You can see the dress in it’s natural state, above. Long sleeves, loose shape, wild pattern. It’s awesome. But here’s what I love about this dress: even though it’s short, it can work for a wide range of temperatures.
For example, take a look below to see how I styled it on those 40 degree nights in Santa Fe. I put a long sleeve base layer underneath, a wool coatigan on top, and wore wool footie socks with my booties. I found that as long as my core was warm, bare legs were okay in the cold (at least for a little while — tights could be another option).
And there you have it!
Your turn! What do you think about the new “out and about” photos? Do they feel a little more interesting and lively? Got any other tips on styling a dress for a chilly spring day? I’d love to hear ’em!
See you Thursday — we’ll be styling this dress for hot weather.
• • •
Liked today’s outfit? You can shop it and support Unfancy at the same time by using these affiliate links:
01 | Boho dress by Christy Dawn (made responsibly) | similar | similar (under $35)
02 | Wool cardigan (old by Elizabeth Suzann) | similar in linen (made responsibly) | similar | similar (under $40)
03 | Bag gifted by ONA | similar (made responsibly) | similar (under $65) | similar (under $49)
04 | Ankle booties (old by Sam Edelman) | similar | similar (made responsibly)
05 | Sunnies by Madewell
littleblackdomicile blogger says
We think you are the cutest little goober out and about! Ironically, since we are so into what inspires us with color, I mentioned to a coworker yesterday that you looked so amazing in the white sweater in Ojo with nature as the backdrop. Go for it! Your living room will always be there when you need her.-Laurel Bledsoe
Ah, thank you for the words of encouragement! xo
I like the new photo style! I’m glad that you’ve maintained the simplicity of it rather than photos with busy streets in the background and such.
Also, can’t wait to see how you style the dress. I tend to feel a bit frumpy or weird in pieces that are “boho” even when I love the print or colours, so I’m excited to see how you style it in a way that isn’t too “festival” and more modern, if that makes sense!
Ditto this comment. She expressed my thoughts on Boho exactly. That’s what I was trying to get across when we were shopping for me. Thanks Elena!
Love you Sis, and love the photos!
Sheila Joy says
I love your out and about photos!! (and your story hehe). I can understand being very comfortable with the same backdrops because if it works, why change? I personally love diversifying my photos and have already gotten tired of the same places in my town. I need to start exploring more!
Sally evans says
I’m in LOVE with that dress! It matches your colors perfectly and I love the shape. Here’s to starting new things – taking photos outside can feel awkward but it’s definitely fun :)
Can’t wait to see some more!
Nice to see you in a fun, print dress.
I had a fashion blog way back in the day and used to take all my pictures outside. If someone asked what I was doing I would say I was taking a nice picture to send to my mom! ?
That is hilarious, Lexie!!
I love it!! The photos look great!!
-Kirsten // pork & cookies
I love to wear tights/leggings with dresses and there’s always the option to have a basic dress and wild pattern on the legs! :)
As always, you look great and the photos are super!
I know you are not a fan of jewelry. But here goes anyway. To enhance the Boho vibe, I might add a pendant necklace in tan/spice (the color of your bag) that’s long (hits that spot between waist and breast line) and large enough to show against your dress. Or, a pair of large, dangling earrings with lots of tiny, pretty small gemstones in the colors of your dress. I know you are not an accessories person, but these small touches would seem to make this outfit look even more thoughtful.
Sounds lovely, Aleta. Thanks for sharing your suggestions! :)
Oh I love that dress, the pattern and the shape is perfect! The swing shape and hem length make it really flattering.
Lovely photos! I really like the out and about idea :) after some time it gets easier to shoot outside, I can tell you from my experience :)
Greetings from Germany
Good to know! Thanks, Shanice! :)
I love the new photos, Caroline!! They definitely give off the lighthearted vibe you mentioned. Just looking at them brings a smile to my face!
Love that you’re outdoors but still sticking with your toned down white background. Experimentation but still cohesive with the rest of your blog!
Love the dress by the way!
Thanks Isabelle! :)
Sarah @ Foxy's Domestic Side says
OH my goodness, you are too cute. I love that you’re branching out. And think of it this way, these people will never see you again and even if they did they won’t remember it was you taking those photos, so rock those outdoor photos. Question, the one where it looks like you’re walking, I’ve always wondered, are you really walking, or do you just pretend that you’re walking?
Hey Sarah! I love that question, it just made me smile! I’m really walking here, but there are times where you definitely have to “hold” your walk to get the shot ;)
Tanya E says
Looks beautiful outside, such lovely light!
I would style a thinner dress for colder days with tights/heattech leggings, long-sleeved base layer, sleeveless gilet/ cardigan and boots or hi-tops… and a coat!
Mad weather here in the UK, freezing fog 4° this morning and now it’s the warmest it’s been at 18°, but no bare legs just yet :).
Love the “out and about” look! Do you follow The Style Crone (www.stylecrone.com)? She’s based in Denver and always shoots her “out and about” photos in the most remarkable places around the city. She usually tries to match the “mood” of the outfit with the backdrop. Can’t wait to see more of your local backdrops. :)
Virginia, gonna go check it out right now! :)
Carly chambers says
I’m wearing a very similar outfit today – dress with top underneath and thick cardigan, plus black tights. Love the new outdoors pictures. I like that it looks so different from the place I live , it might just be a wall, but it looks exotic to me!
I love the photos! Both out and about and inside :) well done! Xo
For cool weather, another possibility might be tall boots and some kind of vest – either sweater or quilted?
Christina Nickerson says
Taking photos outside is so nerve-racking for me, too! Especially with our big camera and everything. I’m such a shy, introvert that any time someone stops to watch, it’s like, “okay and break!” Haha! I, for one, always loved the living room photos. I don’t think they’re “stale” at all!
Thanks, Sofia. :)
Great photos “out and about”…! I was going to suggest tall boots too. I noticed that you don’t have them as part of your Spring Capsule. You would look great in them!
Girl & Closet says
Yay, for trying something new and I absolutely love seeing you feeling free and enjoying the great outdoors!! Plus this dress is SO pretty and can see it being worn in so many different ways… can’t wait to see what else you’ll do with! I too have decided to jump back on the “spring capsule” train and I must say this time around it’s feeling so fun & freeing. Glad you’re finding your groove with it too, so inspiring!! xo
Taking photos outside, in my opinion, are much prettier but I feel like they’re harder to edit because the lighting isn’t the same in every picture (the weather is always so unpredictable and bipolar haha). And that dress is gorgeous, I love the colours and the pattern.
Sarah Clark says
That dress is so dang CUTE! Yes yes, I think the ‘out and about’ photos look so lovely. There is so much more freedom! I used to shoot all my outfit photos outside in various locations but then I took a break from fashion blogging for awhile. I’m back at it now but it’s still pretty chilly in Northern Michigan this time of year so I’m sticking to indoor photos. Which is super fun for me because I’ve never done it before and we just shiplapped our front room and painted it white and there is a lot of natural light so I’m really loving the way it looks. I would like to have a bit of variety in backdrops though. Hopefully I’ll be able to get out and about more for my Spring capsule photos! xx
Hello! First time commenter on your blog–I really enjoy your style! I recently started going full tilt into my own blog and had some photos taken “out and about”. Completely understand the feeling of public photo shoots! It was a little intimidating at first but tons of fun once I relaxed! Your photos look very fun and carefree and your blog is great!
Thanks Julie! I’m sure it will get easier too. Intimidating at first, but a lot of fun. :)
Love the dress on you :)
Madeline Mudd says
I love this outfit, Caroline! I also really like that you put a boho/multicolored dress in your capsule-ish – you make everything so versatile!
Natalie Was Here says
YES, Caroline! I absolutely love the outdoor shots! You’re a pro already (and you definitely don’t look like a goober from this side of the screen) :) Can’t wait to see what you come up with!
Haha! Thanks Natalie! :)
My husband and I are photographers together. We photograph all of our couples outside and “goober” is a feeling I can relate to, haha! I always liked the indoor photos, but love the outdoor ones too! I think the texture and color of your clothes will be easier to see now. As always, thanks for sharing! :)
Abigail Alice says
I love your out and about photography! This dress is so pretty and I love the tan accessories you paired with it.
Abigail Alice ?
Kimi, Cotton Cashmere Cat Hair says
Haha, it does take some time to feel comfortable shooting photos in public but now I don’t mind. :) It’s funny to me when people don’t want to walk by me while shooting—I always have to let them know that it’s fine and if they are snapped in a photo I won’t use it. I love the neutral background you found! It’s so hard to find a wall like that around here.
I’ve always loved your photos. Aaron is a great photographer and you are a lovely model! But outdoor photos are THE BEST! Can’t wait to see all the cool locations you find.
Stephanie, yes! I’m so excited to show off some of our town. :)
Hi Caroline! I love your outfit and all The things you do, flor example, The capsules. You inspire me to make new things like this. Hugs from México.
Wait… do you normally *not* wear footie/ankle socks with your booties??? That seems like blister city to me! That’s what makes ankle booties such a winner in my book – they can have the elevated look of dressier shoes, but all the comforts of casual shoes like socks and even insoles if we’re trampin’ about town for hours.
Hi Kelly! I usually wear socks with ’em. When it’s cold out I just make sure to wear a wool pair specifically. :)
You look happy and joyful and so pretty Caroline, no one can laugh at you darling! xo
I definitely love the new photography style! It is very flattering to you and your outfit. The lighting is great and brings attention to the little details, like the texture of your coatigan. At the end of the day, you do what feels right to you. Doesn’t matter if it’s what lots of other people are doing or not. Doesn’t that describe the capsule(ish) experience in general? ;)
Indeed, Taryn! It sure does. :)
thank your for sharing affordable options. ;)
and i’m proud of you for trying something new even thought it feel out of your comfort zone. practice makes perfect.
Thanks for the encouragement, Mel! :)
I actually like that you are taking your photos somehwere besides your home! A lot of times (exepcially back in the capsule days) the photos felt very staged. It’s nice to see something different and get a glimpse of where you like to go in your hometown. I say keep this up!
LOVE this post, Caroline…and the DRESS! The outdoors really do send a renewed vibe! Looking forward to your future posts and photos!
I was so waiting to see a boho dress post here. That dress looks absolutely fabulous on you and the colors suit you so well (hello color analysis). Even though it’s very short it looks dressed. Tip for cool spring days: I’m not a big fan of nylons, I just like the feel of leggings better.
I looked up the material of your dress and it says dry clean. So do you ignore that and wash it anyway? For a dress that gets so much wear, dry cleaning would be too much of a pain…
Hi Tina! I haven’t needed to wash it yet (just a few steamings to keep it fresh), but I’m planning to put it in the washer instead of dry cleaning it. I’ll probably do a little spot check with some water first, but the fabric looks sturdy enough to handle the washing machine. I’ll let you know how it goes!
Definitely would recommend you not put this 100% rayon dress in the washing machine; it will shrink. If you must, hand wash, but it will still probably shrink. It’s just the nature of the fabric.
Ah, thanks for the words of wisdom Kristin! I started googling around about rayon after I saw your comment, and it looks like you’re right! Hm. I may still try to hand wash it, but I’ll be proceeding with caution. Thank you! :)
Love & love! Thank you for your affordable affiliate links! I’ve only been purchasing your recommendations for spring & love how everything fits together. I love capsule guidance! Might make my splurge the Boho dress! I found a very similar pair of Sam Edelmans on Poshmark and am obsessed—they’re perfect.
I just found this same pair of Sam Edelmans on Poshmark too! Brand new! Such a steal :) after seeing how much wear Caroline gets out of them and the good reviews on comfort, had to have! :)
Cute!!!! What is the name of the style? I couldn’t find them in my size :( I got a pair of cognac Edelman booties with a back zip, very similar and still super cute. I wish I could find a spice/cognac tee :)
Hey Nora, mine are the “Lucille” style. :)
I loved your inside shots all this time. But I can’t deny there is so much more movement, almost real time dynamic to your outside photos now! Never realised how much of a difference that would make. Excited to see more as you continue posting!
I feel the exact same way, Cindy! Thanks! :)
I love the dress. I’m a fan of shorter, flowy dresses myself. One question though, your dress is quite short (super cute), do you have any trouble really living in it? Bending over to put on your shoes, etc. I would love some tips for how to live well in a short dress. I have two babies, so bending over is in the cards for me a lot! Thanks!
Hi Allison! Surprisingly, I haven’t had any real issues with that, but I do wear either a black slip or a pair of black biker shorts underneath just in case. I just like being on the safe side with shorter dresses. Over the years, I’ve also sort of trained myself to squat down instead of bending over when wearing a dress like this. Hope that helps a bit! :)
I LOVE the dress AND the out and about photos, keep going out of your comfort zone it looks so refreshing!
Samantha Lee says
What an adorable outfit! Love the coatigan (never heard that term, haha). <3 Also, good for you for getting outside and taking photos! I felt weird about it at first (doing it personally), but then once I decided to just own it, it became so much fun and provides me with so many wonderful backdrops for photos! Honestly, no one really cares, and as long as you are in that mindset, it's no big deal. ;)
That’s true Samantha! Great advice. :)
CAROLINA BARCELOS DE OLIVEIRA says
I like the new “out and about” photos. Theese days I was thinking “She always take photos in the same place” “Should be hard to think in new positions for the photos not to be to similars”, I think the change came in a good time.
Forgive my English, I’m not a native speaker.
You’re so inspiring and I appreciate how real you are; you share your insecurities and still have fun and can laugh at yourself. I’ve loved following you and remember your first photos in your first apartment. They were fab and so are the new out and about pics! Good for you for trying new things! So fun!
Aimee Guzman says
I love the new out and about photos, can’t wait to see more!
It looks nice to take photos outside! You should do it more often! I also love your livingroom pics because the lighting is always great! :)
MISS LUCIA | Fashion & Lifestyle
Miss Field says
You mention steaming quite often, what exactly does it do for clothes? Is it necessary to steam sweaters after storing them all season?
It removes wrinkles, freshens them up, kills bacteria, and gets rid of light odors. It’s not necessary to steam sweaters, but I like to because it gets rid of wrinkles and freshens them up after being in storage. :)
I love the photos and I love this post. I’m really trying to get into my clothes a bit more and not always be looking for the next best thing and learning to play with them, I think these types of posts are great as you can see all the different ways someone has styled an outfit and helps give you inspiration!
Aspiring minimalist says
Wow! So glad this was the topic today. I had weird feels seeing the 4×4 photos with you spinning around in that dress in naaaature. :)
I guess I think of Unfancy as being a highly staged entity. So I assumed you were taking the photos yourself with a timer. Had no idea Aaron was involved. I guess if you’re trying to portray yourself with more real person vibes, outdoors is good (though whitewashed walls? it’s like you’re still indoors?); but before your indoor shots were gorg enough to go in a fashion mag. It’s all about what you want to be seen as. High profile v low profile.
I like this dress on its own and the colors are great for you! But damn is it busy compared to 100% else you own. My mind can’t wrap around it yet. Excited to see it styled.
And 10,000 points for being able to handle 40 degrees bare-legged. I can’t even do that at 50! #southerngirlatheart ;)
WOOL FOOTIE SOCKS?? I didn’t know such a thing existed!! I’ve always hated how cheap and thin and cold ankle socks are when I’m wearing my ankle boots, and for my size-10 feet they always slide down into my shoes and drive me crazy. I even knitted myself a few pairs this winter out of sock wool so I could solve this wardrobe dilemma myself. You just blew my mind!
Kristen, isn’t it exciting?? It’s the little things, you know! :)
I live in a small town near Abilene and am racking my brain on where this wall is! Love your outfit and I say outdoor pics are your jam
Thanks Juanita! It’s downtown — lots of cool spots around there. :)
Is your Elizabeth Suzann “one size” or “one size minus”? I always debate between these two! Thanks!
Hey Marian! I went with the OS. :)
I find that certain dresses look even better when worn with jeans than in their classic state!