The best of 2017

Well, it's been a year. There have been some amazing ups (yay women!) and some incredible downs (um, the President). On a personal level, I went on a few incredible vacations, took a big step with my boyfriend (and photographer), and most importantly for you, dear readers, started blogging again after a three-year hiatus. (If you're newer to Cheryl Shops, you can read about it here.) It's only been four months since I've been back at it, but I'm incredibly proud of all that I've achieved so far, and I'm truly thankful for all of you who read, comment, like, and support me. Here's a look back at 2017.

Most-viewed post
As of today, my most-viewed post was What to wear with bright yellow, followed closely by What to wear with track pants. Both featured bright color, and both were shot in my neighborhood, just walking around. Coincidence...or not?

Most-commented-on post
With 13 comments, What to wear with a pleated velvet skirt was my most engaging post (and also one of my personal favorites). And update: I did not end up wearing this skirt for Christmas, because I didn't bring the right sweater.

Least viewed post
With a mere 75 views, you guys clearly didn't want to know How to make a barrel-aged Negroni. Which is too bad, because they're delicious! But, message received.

Most engaging Instagram post
With 289 likes and 13 comments, my pleated velvet skirt was also my most engaging Instagram post.

Most re-pinned Pinterest post
Is it my outfit, the way my hair is blowing in the breeze, or the golden hour lighting? Who knows?! This pin from What to wear with a pleated midi skirt was my most repinned of the year.

Most liked Facebook post
Somewhat surprisingly, What to wear on date night had the most comments, likes, and clicks of the year. Since there appears to be a hunger for it, perhaps I will do a few more posts on this in the coming year!

Most liked tweet
Real talk, I'm not very active on Twitter, in spite of having quite a few followers there. My most liked tweet was about the sunset in Kauai...and it was liked by two IRL friends of mine. So, goals for next year: step up my Twitter game.

My favorite post
What to wear with a T-shirt dress was probably not our best shoot, but it was the one where I really started to feel like I knew what I was doing. It didn't hurt that the weather was beautiful and we were shooting outdoors, in lovely San Francisco. Also, I'd like to give a special shoutout to my photographer, who is amazing in many, many ways. I can't wait to show you what we create in 2018!

Shopping guide: New Year's Eve sparkle

What are you doing New Year's Eve? I'm hosting a party at home, which is my favorite way to celebrate, but whether you're going out or keeping it low key, I think it's always fun to wear a little sparkle. Here are some of my favorite sequined, beaded, spangled, and all-around glamorous New Year's Eve looks.

1. Whenever I wear a romper or jumpsuit, I usually burst out in giggles when I go to the ladies' room and realize I'm totally naked. Which might be extra fun after several glasses of champagne. I love the sleeves and the detail on this one, and it's a good option if you have amazing legs, or are celebrating somewhere warm.
Parker London sequin romper $357 (on sale)

2. Sequined pants kind of seem like a bad idea, and yet these have a wider, more forgiving cut. They also come in a darker silver color, which might be even more flattering. Also a good choice for those of you who hate dresses and/or want to stay extra warm.
Topshop Premium sequin trousers $110

3. There are silver and gold sequins...and then there are hot pink ones. With the formfitting cut and the bold color, this one is not for the shy, but I also think it's one of the most elegant (and warmest!) looks here.
Dress the Population Emery dress $260

4. This rainbow dress looks like it's made for Instagram, which is not necessarily a bad thing, because it's just fun. I love the bigger pailettes and all of the psychedelic colors. This is also not one for the shy (or the big-busted).
Motel Lola sequin dress $92

5. I love how the pattern on this blazer looks all Art Deco, and you can throw it on over anything from a basic black dress to a T-shirt and jeans. It's probably one of the more versatile pieces here and, at $100, kind of a no-brainer.
WYLDR sequin blazer $100

6. I already own a similar skirt, but I'm tempted to buy this one—I think it has a very flattering line, and the pailettes are a little unexpected. I like the flexibility of being able to wear something different on top, too, depending on the weather or the season. Or my mood!
Milly pailette midi skirt $325

What are you wearing New Year's Eve? Tell me in the comments below!

What to wear with mom jeans

This post goes out to everyone who's been affected by this month's Mercury retrograde. It was originally supposed to be about my New Year's Eve outfit, but a significant part of the look did not arrive last week as promised (it finally showed up today). Then I had a backup outfit planned, and as we tried to shoot it, nothing was going right: we couldn't find good lighting, we ended up in a location where joggers kept running through our shot every 30 seconds, the wind kicked up and the temperature dropped about 15 degrees, and I realized my outfit looked like Han Solo's in The Empire Strikes Back (which may not be a bad thing, but not really what I was going for). My boyfriend/photographer observed that I looked pissed off in every shot, and that's when we decided to throw in the towel, grab a drink, and try again the next day. I'm happy to say things worked out for the best.

These jeans were a Black Friday buy, and I've been wearing them pretty much nonstop since they've arrived. I have a pair of Re/Done Levi's (seen here), but they're very slim in the leg, and I've been looking for more textbook mom jeans for awhile; after countless pairs that have given me a FUPA and/or long butt, I'm happy to report that the Levi's 505c are a winner from all angles. They're high-waisted, with a straight, cropped leg, and by some feat of engineering, they are really flattering. They are also 100% cotton, which was an adjustment at first, but they're breaking in and getting better day by day. They run true to size, too!

I just featured this leather jacket a few weeks ago in a dressier outfit, but as you can see, it's incredibly versatile, here with a more casual look. The leather helps keep out the chill from the wind, too!

As I mentioned in the first part of this post, it's getting cold in San Francisco—which, okay, is about 15 degrees cooler than it normally is, but trust me, you can feel the difference. And that means it's finally sweater weather, i.e. the three months out of the year I can wear my cashmere sweaters. This one is from Everlane, and it's one of my favorites. (I sized up for more of a boyfriend fit.) The camel color is sold out, sadly, but I've linked an alternative below.

Would I normally carry a sequined clutch on a Sunday morning? No, and I felt somewhat ridiculous with it when I later went to Target and Trader Joe's, but it was part of the previous day's outfit and I was determined to use it! Being sequined, it's clearly the perfect party clutch, but what makes it even more fun is that the sequins flip, so you can make your own pattern on it. It also has handy credit-card slots inside, so you only need to carry the essentials.

Last month, I was invited to a pop-up shop opening for Vionic, which is a comfort-shoe company based in the Bay Area. I have a hard time finding flats with good arch support, but these are so ridiculously comfortable and sturdy, I've been wearing them multiple times a week. Also, they're supercute and look good with everything—dresses, jeans, leggings—and required no break-in period at all.  I am a total convert!

Another important thing I learned on this shoot is that the brighter my lipstick, the less makeup I have to wear overall, which is good when it's a Sunday morning and the last thing you want to do is put on an entire face. I'm wearing Stila Stay All Day in Beso and they're not messing around when they say "stay all day." This stuff survived coffee, lunch, multiple kisses, and dinner, and I still needed to take it off with Bioderma at the end of the day. I think my mom would approve.

OUTFIT DETAILS: Everlane cashmere turtleneck (another camel option here) || Banana Republic moto jacket (very similar here) || Levi's 505c jeans || Miansai screw cuff bracelet || Stella & Dot Margeaux clutch, signet ring, engravable ring || Vionic Hadley oxfords c/o (more sizes here)

Holiday 2017 gift guide: last-minute gifts that aren't gift cards

Ok, procrastinators. You have two choices: you can give someone an Amazon gift card and die of shame, or you pick one of these gifts and pretend like you ordered it three weeks ago like the totally organized, thoughtful person you are. Which one is it going to be?

1. There are all sorts of crazy stories about these DNA kits, like people finding out they're actually adopted, but to me, the fun would be connecting with long-lost relatives all over the world—and having an excuse to go visit them. This is the lighter version of the kit, i.e. not the one that tells you all the diseases you're going to die from. It's on Amazon, so you can use your Prime and get next-day delivery if necessary.
23andMe ancestry kit $79

2. You can join a random Internet wine club and get crappy bottles that distributors can't sell, or you can go right to the source and support a local, family-owned winery that needs all the help it can get after the Sonoma fires this year. I am a member at Larson, and not only are their wines delicious, they're incredibly affordable too. And if you're ever in town, you can visit the vineyard and hang out with their three labradors.
Larson Family Wine Club starting at $19 per bottle

3. In the years since I've last been a member, Birchbox has come a long way in terms of personalization, and they even have boxes for guys. And who doesn't like getting a box of surprises every month in the mail?
Birchbox subscription $30-$110

4. Texture is an app that has literally changed my life—for $14.99 a month, you get to download a digital version of pretty much every magazine out there (there's a $9.99 version that excludes the weekly mags). I read everything from Architectural Digest to US Weekly, and thus support journalism, i.e. real news, in all genres.
Texture app subscription $30–$50

5. There's just something so indulgent about having fresh flowers in your house—this may be a somewhat frivolous gift, but isn't that the idea? The best kinds of gifts are ones that seem silly to buy for yourself. With Bouqs, you can choose the frequency and type of flowers, and thus totally spoil your recipient.
Bouqs subscription starting at $40

6. Full disclosure: I am kind of mad at the Zoe Report Box of Style at the moment, because they charged my credit card nearly a month ago for my winter box and it has yet to ship. (I am apparently not alone.) That said, this is still my favorite subscription box and worth it, even with the customer-service headaches.
Zoe Report Box of Style $99.99–$349.99

7. Blacksocks has more than black socks—a bunch of colors, for one, plus underwear and shirts—but I like their whole idea of saving time by not worrying about dumb things like socks. And based on the rave reviews, their products are clearly well loved.
Blacksocks subscription starting at $98

8. I was at a friend's house recently and was somewhat surprised to be listening to Pandora radio, complete with ads. People still do that?! I've been a Spotify Premium subscriber for years, and while sometimes I'm overwhelmed by choice, I think its playlists and music-recommendation algorithms are unparalleled. Bonus: unlimited skipping, and no ads!
Spotify Premium $9.99–$119.88

9. From the women's marches to #metoo, 2017 has weirdly shaped up to be the year of the woman. Let's keep the momentum going globally in 2018 by funding a woman entrepreneur through Kiva micro-financing.
Kiva card $25–$2,000

What to wear with a little black dress

It's the most wonderful time of the year...if you love dressing up, that is. And I do. I have a bunch of party dresses that sit sadly in the back of my closet for most of the year, so this is the time to break them out. Thankfully, I've had a lot of events this season, and lots of excuses to get dressed up!

If you're like me, you probably own a bunch of little black dresses. Mine are all slightly different—and thus totally necessary, right?—but this one struck my fancy because of the length and shape, both of which are unexpected. It's almost a maxi, but it's also rather snug, and while Spanx are pretty much a necessity with this dress, it's somehow also incredibly comfortable and flattering. I bought it at IRO in Paris (one of my favorite places to shop there), and they make more or less the same dress every season—for a good reason.

This leather jacket is by Vince, and it's also a style they make year after year, in slightly different colors. I am a firm believer that leather jackets are something worth investing in (please don't have a heart attack when you look at the price); this one is buttery-soft and just keeps getting better with age. And it can either go dressy or casual.

Since my jacket and dress were more minimalist, I decided to go a little glitzy with my accessories. As I've mentioned before, I work for a jewelry company during the week, so weekends are my time to break out Other People's Jewelry (although I am wearing one of my favorite necklaces from my company). This is one of my favorite bracelet pairings (last seen here) and the ring is an old $5 cheapie from Forever 21 that, in spite of the fact that the enamel has worn off in the back and the metal is decomposing, people ask about all the time. I love how it looks like a vintage piece.

I was planning on wearing a clutch with this outfit and made a last-minute change to my beloved Jerome Dreyfuss bag (last seen here). I joke that this is the poor woman's Chanel bag, but it's also way edgier, so I think it works with the whole vibe here.

Of course, no party look is complete without festive shoes, and my Valentino Rockstuds are pretty much the craziest ones I own. (In a good way.) I last showed these with jeans here, but they can clearly go with a dressier look too. I should also note they're incredibly comfortable—I traipsed all over Lafayette Park (where we shot these photos), then out to dinner and drinks, and my feet had no pain at all. Of course, that might also have had something to do with all the wine I drank. 'Tis the season!

A few weeks ago when I was editing photos and looked a little washed out, and I heard my mom's voice in my head saying, "Cheryl, put a little lipstick on." So I broke out my Sephora Rouge Cream lipstick in Passion Red 03 for this shoot. I'm telling you the exact shade because not only does this color look good on everyone, it lasts all freaking day. Like, you will have to physically remove it at night and you will be amazed by how much color is left on your lips. And speaking of my mom, I look oddly like her in a lot of these photos. Perhaps proof that we really do turn into our mothers one day?

OUTFIT DETAILS: Vince leather jacket (budget-friendly option here) || IRO dress (also here) || Jerome Dreyfuss Bobi Bag || Valentino Rockstud pumps || Stella & Dot Kari necklace || Hermes clic H bracelet, Rachel Zoe tassel bracelet (similar here) || Forever 21 ring

Holiday 2017 gift guide: dream gifts

And now, onto the most fun gift guide of the holiday 2017 season: gifts for ME! (Hey, this is my blog, and I can dream if I want to!) Here's what I've been lusting after this year. Warning: most of these are on the splurgy side, but, Santa Baby, I've been an awful good girl.

1. I thought I wanted a pair of Gucci Marmont loafers until I saw a coworker with these. Now they're the only shoes I can think about. Gucci is THE It label right now, but these will live forever.
Gucci Princetown mules $680

2. Lingua Franca's cashmere sweaters are like the Gen X version of those T-shirts that say "Rosé all day." Some of their slogans are a bit silly (like the ones that say "Original Gangster") but "Old School"—and the bright red color—suits me just fine.
Lingua Franca Old School sweater $360

3. These earrings have inspired a thousand knockoffs (including, um, the ones I featured in my gifts for women guide), and yet all I want is the real thing.
Annie Costello Brown arc earrings $205

4. I have a DSLR camera that I paid a small fortune for several years ago; it takes beautiful photos, however I rarely use it because it weighs like 8 pounds. I want to downgrade (or upgrade?) to this mirrorless camera, which bloggers rave about. If you can't beat 'em...
Canon EOS M6 camera $799

5. I live in an old Victorian, and my apartment gets incredibly cold and drafty in the winter. This faux-fur sleeping bag looks like the perfect solution, although I fear I'd be so warm and cozy, I'd never get up from the couch.
Cuddle Up faux-fur sleeping bag $199

6. I've been looking for a leopard-print coat forever; I have a vintage one that I love, but it's falling apart. I am really particular about leopard prints, and although this one is not quite right—it's faux fur, and I'd prefer a natural woven fabric—it's pretty darn close.
House of Harlow x Revolve Perry coat $278

7. I once bought this hand soap without checking the price, and I was too embarrassed to say anything, so I brought it home anyway. It literally changed my life—it's the only hand soap I've ever used that has not dried out my hands. The price is fairly ridiculous and yet somehow worth it.
Aesop Resurrection Aromatique hand wash $39

8. Speaking of ridiculous, does anyone really need a $400 hair dryer? Like, is this really better than a Babybliss or a Hot Tools? With its featherweight construction, near-silent fan, and shortened drying time, all reviews point to yes.
Dyson supersonic hair dryer $399

9. I am so methodical about my handbags, it usually takes me close to a year to make a decision. (I am a little OCD, I know.) I have been eyeing this one all year, and after seeing it on one of my favorite fashion bloggers, I think my decision has finally been made.
A.P.C. Demi-Lune bag $470

Coming next week: a last-minute gift guide for all the procrastinators out there!

What to wear with a pleated velvet skirt

Spoiler alert to my family: this is probably one of my Christmas outfits. It's bright pink, which isn't exactly Christmassy, but I feel like Mrs. Claus Gone Wrong when I wear red velvet, so it's the closest I could get. I know velvet is a big trend right now—and I'm fully on board with that—but I think I was four the last time I really wore it. So my challenge for this week is making velvet feel a bit cooler and age-appropriate. Here's how I put it together.

This black leather moto jacket is one of the few remaining pieces I kept from my three (very long) years at Banana Republic. I will keep my thoughts to myself on the quality of the rest of the line, but this jacket is incredibly soft lambskin, fits like a glove, and should probably retail for twice what it does. I think BR recently put everything on sale for 50% off (including leather, which they rarely promote), hence why it's nearly sold out. If you see one of these in the future, however, pounce on it. It's worth every cent.

Since the skirt is so bright, I had to balance it with a lot of black on top. This sweatshirt was a Black Friday score, and one that I was incredibly happy with. It's incredibly soft and lightweight, and it looks rather fancy. It's hard to see, but it has a cool crisscross detail in the front. I'm not normally one to order something in several different colors, but I'm tempted to do so for this one.

And, oh yes, the skirt. I kind of impulse-bought this one at Zara (story of my life), and while it's definitely a bit brighter than what I normally wear, I think the risk paid off. Also, it's good for twirling.

I am obsessed with these shoes and have been wearing them pretty much nonstop since they arrived. They're pretty comfy, thanks to the kitten heel, and they have a crazy elongating effect on your legs, especially when you wear them with pants. They are sadly sold out at the moment, but hopefully Mango will restock them soon.

I'm firmly in the leopard-is-a-neutral camp, and I thought this look needed a little pop of print, so a fun little clutch it is! This one was last seen in this post, and I love how it looks just as great with jeans as it does with a dressier outfit. And did I mention it's only $45?

OUTFIT DETAILS: Banana Republic leather jacket (very similar by Madewell) || Athleta criss cross sweatshirt || Zara pleated velvet skirt (similar here too) || Mango satin knot mules || BP leopard haircalf clutch || Stella & Dot disc necklace and wing necklace

Holiday 2017 gift guide: gifts under $25

Is everyone recovering from Black Friday and Cyber Monday? I did quite a bit of post–Thanksgiving dinner drunk shopping on the former, so it should be interesting to see what arrives later this week. This installment of my gift guide is dedicated to your office Secret Santa, stocking stuffers, and other gifts for random people. Or it's just convenient if you don't want to spend a lot of money on a present (hey, no judgment). Thankfully there are a lot of fun options.

1. You don't have to be a millennial to love avocados—and hate how they turn brown, even when you wrap them tightly. This BPA-free silicone cover (in two sizes) should prevent any spots.
Avocado huggers $7.95

2. This handy kit will transform your airplane vodka-and-soda into a Moscow mule—all you're missing is the copper mug. Also available for old-fashioned and gin & tonic.
Carry-on cocktail kit $24

3. Who doesn't love sheet masks? They're Instagrammable, even if you're an Instagram husband. Oh, and they make your skin look amazing.
Sephora Face Mask Magic! $25

4. If you see my #OOTD Instagram stories, you may have noticed one of these on my phone. It is pretty much the handiest thing—literally. I hold it while taking photos and scrolling through my apps, and you can also use it with a hook in your car. Seriously life transforming!
PopSocket $9.99

5. Labor Day weekend in San Francisco broke record heat temperatures...and also introduced me to this wonder, a fan that plugs into your iPhone and blows a surprisingly strong breeze.
iPhone fan $4.99

6. These are technically men's socks, but I'd gladly wear Han and Chewy on my feet (or, if you prefer, C-3PO and R2-D2).
Stance Star Wars Socks $20

7. Drinking your daily 64 oz. of water will be just a little more fun in a glitter-covered water bottle (that, god willing, should not spread its sparkle on others).
Ban.Do glitter bomb $24

8. This would be a fairly hilarious gift for coworkers with good senses of humor. "Replied all" may need to get reused several times; hopefully "Mediocre boss" won't.
Worst coworker ribbons $20

9. Apparently coloring books for adults are a thing. This one has 80 pages of New York scenes, the thought of which makes me just a little bit homesick—in a good way.
Seasons of New York coloring book $22.50

Up next week: my dream wish list, i.e. splurges for girls who've been very, very good this year.

What to wear on a road trip

One of my favorite Thanksgiving traditions is taking a road trip down the California coastline to my boyfriend's family in Los Angeles. If you have time, driving along route 1 is incredibly gorgeous and relaxing, and it helps the transition from a hectic work week to an extra-long weekend. We were really excited, too, because the Pfeiffer Bridge in Big Sur just reopened after having collapsed earlier this year, so we were able to eat lunch at Nepenthe, one of the most magical restaurants in the world (more for the view, I should mention), and visit McWay Falls, a waterfall that neither of us had seen before. I did not quite dress for a hike, but I was at least dressed for a road trip.

My cardinal rule of packing for a trip is that I bring mostly neutral clothes, plus one color, so I can wear everything in my suitcase interchangeably. Layers are also key, especially when you're transitioning from one climate to another, like from northern to southern California. Last week was rather warm for this time of year, so I brought a light jacket (last seen here, briefly).

The tee underneath is actually silk, which is very soft and breathable, and the longer-in-back cut is perfect for wearing with skinny jeans. It's by The Reset, which is a local label that I was just introduced to a few months ago, and is quickly becoming a new go-to for well-made basics.

I am also a big fan of wearing skinny jeans on road trips—obviously you want to be comfortable when you're in the car for hours, but it's also important to wear something that you can get in and out of the car in easily. This pair is an oldie but a goodie, and I'm particularly fond of the ankle zips (more jeans should have these!).

These are my Chloé boots (last seen here), and a low heel is also key for a road trip, because comfort first. Of course, these were not the best choice for a hike, but thankfully the trail to the waterfall was relatively flat and smooth. And totally worth it for the view.

OUTFIT DETAILS: Free People military jacket || The Reset silk tee || Rag & Bone ankle-zip jeans (similar here on mega sale) || Chloé Susanna boots || MANGO frayed scarf || Stella & Dot Kensington tote || Stella & Dot Kari necklace || Karen Walker sunglasses

Holiday 2017 gift guide: gifts for women

Ready to shop some more? Did I even need to ask that question? Black Friday sales are in full effect, and now the fun really begins. I love shopping for women—it's kind of both immediate and delayed gratification. Here are my top picks for your mom, your sister, your bestie, your girlfriend, or any of the women in your life. 

1. Cuyana makes the most quietly beautiful leather goods, and even better, they're incredibly well priced. This is pretty much the perfect bag, and it comes in three colors, as well as a larger size.
Cuyana smal hobo $195

2. Gap makes this sweater every year, and sales from it are probably propping up the company year-round, but, hey, if it works, it works.
Gap crazy stripe sweater $34.95 (on sale!)

3. Think of this as the new stress ball—moving your hand back and forth to change the pattern of the sequins is incredibly mesmerizing and calming. Also, it's just a darn glamorous pillow.
Levtex sequin pillow $39.99

4. Bite Beauty's lipsticks are made of food-grade ingredients, which is a good thing, considering you actually swallow most of the lipstick you put on. I am a huge fan of the deeply pigmented hues, too.
Bite Beauty perfect bite set $25

5. Pretty much every cool girl I've seen recently has been wearing a pair of sculptural metal statement earrings like these. Bonus: they look great on women of all ages.
Madewell sculpture earrings $25.50 (on sale!)

6. Who doesn't love athleisure? These leggings will make her the best-dressed woman at barre class (and even afterward at brunch).
EXP Core watercolor leggings $34.95 (on sale!)

7. The older I get, the more I'm learning the power of good lighting. This iPhone case ensures every selfie (or conventional photo) will be shot in flattering light.
Lumee iPhone case $69.95

8. Do you have a friend with a pricey kombucha habit? (I'm talking $7 a bottle, or more, people. The struggle is real.) This will let her brew her own, minus the random yeast globs.
Kombucha brewing kit $48.95

9. These boots were probably not made for walking, but they are made for dancing—and they're a tenth of the price of those YSL runway beauties.
Shellys London sequin boots $228

Have a happy Thanksgiving, and an even happier Black Friday and Small Business Saturday! I'll be back next week with more gift guides!

What to wear with a duster cardigan

We have now come to that time of year I like to call "elastic waistband time." I got a head start with my vacation a few weeks ago (a week of sitting around on the beach, drinking mai-tais, and eating everything within reach), then stepped up the gluttony last week with a work Thanksgiving celebration, a work off-site, and a dear friend's birthday dinner. This week, I have a road trip to L.A., two Thanskgivings, and part 2 of my boyfriend's birthday celebration. The struggle is real. Now, I'm all for body positivity and acceptance and all of that. You should love yourself, just as you are. But sometimes it's hard to feel good when you feel like a beached whale.  So this week's post is dedicated to an outfit that discretely camouflages holiday weight gain—think of it as FaceTune for your body.

First, you need a full-length duster cardigan. Not only is it a great layering piece for cooler weather, but it's basically like wearing a bathrobe. Most importantly, the length creates a longer line for your body—an optical illusion of sorts. It also skims the hips, bum, and thighs, which is a plus if your poundage tends to gather there. You'll want to look for a lighter-weight knit—a chunky one will just exacerbate the problem.

Next, you'll need a top with a strong vertical line. I think button-down shirts are always a good choice—they're classic and adjustable, and pretty much flattering any way you wear them. This is the shirt I bought on my last Madewell shopping trip (see, I promised I'd feature it in an outfit post!), and a lighter color is key here, because it helps draw the eye up (i.e. look at my face, not at my gut).

Also from Madewell: these high-rise skinny jeans, which sound like something you don't want to wear when you're carrying a little extra poundage, but trust me, these jeans are amazing. The higher rise helps hold you in, and they have magic pockets with extra hidden stretchiness. I know a bunch of women with totally different body types and they look amazing on all of them.

When it comes to shoes, now is not the time to go crazy. Pairing black ankle boots with black ankle-length jeans keeps the elongating effect going. I've had these Acne Pistol boots for ages—and it shows, I know—but they are pretty much perfect in every way. The toe is not too round, the heel is not too high, and you can wear them with so much. They are well worth the investment (I've had these resoled twice), and you can expect to see them a lot more around here.

Have you ever noticed when the stars of your favorite TV shows are pregnant, they tend to hide behind big handbags? Same thing here...except I'm just pregnant with a food baby. And thus this tote (last seen here) is practical on many levels.

Of course, the most important accessory during elastic waistband time is a glass of good wine. I know, that seems contradictory, but a glass of red wine has antioxidants, calms the nerves, and is a mere 80 calories. You've earned it, so enjoy it. And if I may make a recommendation, I suggest ordering the merlot, zinfandel, or sauvignon blanc from Frog's Leap in Napa—it's where these photos were taken, and it's one of my absolute favorite places, especially for Sunday Wine Church. Amen.

OUTFIT DETAILS: Zara duster cardigan (similar here or here) || Madewell chambray Ex-Boyfriend shirt || Madewell high-rise skinny jeans || Acne Pistol boots || Vanessa Bruno tote || Stella & Dot leopard scarf (similar here) || YHF Los Angeles Cashton sunglasses