Sweaters and Statements




It’s time to break out the cold weather clothing again. That means all black all the time, with a few splashes of autumn color here and there. This outfit is definitely inspired by my punk days, but I’ve simplified and updated it to be more reflective of how I express myself today.

This gorgeous beaded necklace comes from an artist from the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation. It’s totally stunning. Really intricate, skillful beadwork with a lovely, warm color scheme. My obsession with authentic Native beading has made me build outfits around statement jewelry recently. And this necklace really makes a great statement. When somebody works that hard to make a piece of jewelry so beautiful, I feel compelled to dial back the rest of my outfit to make the jewelry stand out.

I’m also really happy with this pair of Dr. Martens shoes that recently came into my possession. They’re a one-eye style with a pointed toe. I’ve paired them with bright red corgi socks for this outfit, because for some reason I feel like they call for socks that really stand out. I’m currently in the painful breaking-in process, which I’ve been through before with my 1460s, but it feels a bit different with this style. There’s no raw leather rubbing up against my heel; there’s a hard edge doing it instead. So it’s a different kind of pain—a pain that any Dr. Martens lover will know is totally worth it once the leather softens.




Librarian Chic



Today I’m serving librarian realness, because I have this outfit made almost entirely of ModCloth label items that I think visually captures my inherent bookishness. And it feels perfect for Fall, should the weather ever truly get cold.

While I own both a huge library of books and a Kindle (I do believe the two can coexist peacefully), I will always prefer a real book to an ebook. Real books are tangible and they smell good. I prefer spending time in bookstores to shopping online, I focus better when I’m looking at paper rather than a screen, and let’s face it, one of the biggest things physical media has over digital is that it’s just way more beautiful. But these aren’t the only reasons I love physical books. It’s also because the vintage lover in me has a thing for collecting old, loved, worn-out printings of classic literature.


Take this 19th century collection of Longfellow’s poetry. It has a handsome, smooth fabric cover, gold leaf pages, and gold embossing. Who wouldn’t want a cool book like this sitting on their bookshelf? With an ebook, you can enjoy what you’re reading, but you can’t have the experience of reading from a single copy that has a history that’s completely unknown to you. There’s a mystique there that digital just can’t capture.

And just this weekend I picked up a 100-year-old library-bound copy of Joseph Conrad’s The Shadow Line at a used bookshop for only $9, which has me very excited. Library-bound books are always heartier, so I’m not as afraid of the pages falling out when I read it, unlike this Longfellow book or my 1888 collection of Poe’s work. I have to be extra careful with those ones.

While I totally see the benefits of ebooks (they’re great for people with vision problems, they allow people to own thousands of free copies of public domain works rather than borrowing them from the library, etc.) I’m a print book nerd for life, and I’m confident that print will survive. I know a lot of my fellow book lovers are afraid digital is going to destroy print forever, but with the way book publishers have adapted in the rise of ebooks (most notably being the trend of drop-dead gorgeous decorative binding a lot of publishers are doing nowadays), I think those of us who like to turn real pages—or put our noses into the book’s gutter and take a whiff of that lovely paper and ink smell—will still have bookshops and libraries to go to for a long time.



Cardigan: ModCloth
Top: ModCloth
Skirt: ModCloth
Bracelet: Handmade by a Jemez Pueblo artist
Shoes: Old

My Own Skin


I’ve been wearing less makeup in my everyday life, and that’s a good thing for me right now. Today I’m posting totally unedited, completely makeup-free photos of my face. It’s something I need to do.

When a woman posts a photo of herself on social media without makeup, it’s supposed to be an empowering act. It’s about baring your bare face to the world. It’s supposed to be an exercise in self-love. And that’s wonderful. But unfortunately, it’s an act of empowerment that, in its current practice, isn’t as inclusive as it could be, because of society’s general views on what constitutes “beautiful” skin. For the past few years, I’ve wanted so badly to feel like I could go out in public without makeup on, or do an outfit post without wearing concealer. However, I’ve been dealing with chronic adult acne; something that our culture implores us to get rid of or cover up.

When you have acne, you live a life where you’re always trying to hide your face, and that really sucks. You become hyper aware of the fact that when a woman with clear skin posts a makeup-free photo for everyone to see, she’s more likely to get positive feedback than if a woman whose complexion isn’t as clear did the same exact thing. Because we’re bombarded with the idea that clear skin is what’s beautiful, and anything else is unsightly.

That’s the word I most often hear associated with acne: “unsightly.” It’s bound to make anyone who has it feel hideous.

But why should those of us with “problem skin” feel hideous? Just because we don’t have a naturally clear, even complexion? Should I be ashamed because I now don’t cover my entire face in concealer and foundation (which only inflames my skin more)? Hell to the no. I’m going to believe I’m beautiful. I’m going to know I’m beautiful. I don’t need messed up beauty standards telling me otherwise.


My acne is hereditary and hormonal. Believe me, it has nothing to do with how often I wash my face or my bedding, or from what I eat. And I think that’s true for a lot of people. Only recently have I found a treatment that actually works for me, and it was recommended to me by another person with acne, rather than someone who only has to deal with the occasional pimple. And it has helped significantly. That’s why I feel safe posting these unedited photos today, fading scars and all—because my skin has actually improved. I would have never dreamed of doing this even a month ago because it would have been too scary for me. I wasn’t ready. And it’s unfortunate that I felt that way, because I shouldn’t feel ashamed of my skin. But I still have some spots showing, and I’m not covering them up.

I recently read a great zine from Craft or DIY about the importance of including skin conditions into the body acceptance movement. It’s a great read, and very relatable for me personally. I wish I had read this when my acne was worse—it would have made me feel so much better—but it still helps even now that the scars are slowly fading. It’s what inspired me to finally post these makeup-free photos.

For many people, acne is just something you deal with when you’re a teenager, then afterward you get to enjoy a relatively acne-free adulthood. Apparently this isn’t how my life worked out.

And you know what? That’s okay. I’m learning to finally be happy in my own skin and love myself, acne and scars and all.






In today’s post, I’d like to show my appreciation for the local Native artists who made the beautiful pieces of jewelry in these photos. I recently attended a cultural event put on by the Dry Creek Rancheria Band of Pomo Indians, where I purchased most of these pieces of beaded jewelry from local Pomo artists. The aquamarine-colored necklace and earrings look like they’re part of a set, but they were actually made by two different artists, and I love wearing them together. I also really like the red, black, and white beaded loop earrings, which look great with all my black clothes (I have lots) and bright turquoise stones.

Ever since I was a kid, I have received inconsistent education on our continent’s indigenous peoples. I was fed the whitewashed Thanksgiving stories and problematic depictions of Native Americans all throughout my youth, and I got very little information on what tribal life is like today. But I also had a lot of local tribal education as a kid, learning extensively about the local Miwok and Pomo people. And of course as a teenager I finally got to learn the real, totally awful Thanksgiving/Columbus stories. So while the seeds for indigenous appreciation were sown early on, I didn’t have enough resources to truly know what it means to be a good ally, or to tell the difference between cultural appreciation and appropriation.

In this recent wave of indigenous appropriation and corporate commercialization of native aesthetics, there has been a ton of information available on what appropriation is and isn’t, and how to truly appreciate Native American cultures without appropriating. Native AppropriationsEveryday Feminism, and Jezebel all are great resources on how to show your respect and honor this continent’s native people.



Buying arts and crafts directly from Native artists is an awesome way to respectfully incorporate Native culture in your everyday life. Brush up on the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990 so you can know what to look for when searching for authentic Native-made goods. Or just head over to Beyond Buckskin Boutique and behold the incredible beauty of their gorgeous Native-made jewelry and incredibly cool, modern clothing.

One of the best parts of buying from actual Native artists is making that human connection. Meeting talented artists and supporting their craft is really important, and that’s true for people of any cultural background. When I buy items from outside my culture, I want to buy them from somebody of that culture. It seems only right.



The only links I’m able to give for the jewelry shown are White Buffalo for the turquoise stone necklace and Mitla Moda for the beaded bracelet. Unfortunately I don’t have any information on the artists I met who made the beaded earrings and abalone necklace. But what I can say about them is that they were really talented people and I really enjoyed talking to them and learning about their work. The woman who made the aquamarine-colored beaded earrings was selling alongside her sister, and they had me laughing the whole time with all their quick back-and-forth jokes. And the abalone necklace was sold to me by a sweet elderly woman whose beading is delicate and colorful. She told me she would be selling more around Christmastime at a Native market in Santa Rosa. I want to find out when this is so I can see more of her work!

Being a good ally means constant learning, listening, and growing. No ally is perfect. But making an effort to show true respect for other cultures, and learning to take criticism and learn from our experiences when we screw up, is important in good allyship.

The Jezebel link I posted above has great information on the 3 S’s to consider when buying Native goods (Source, Significance/Sacredness, and Similarity). I’ll post it again right here so you don’t have to scroll back up to find it.

Easy Breezy




Top: Mitla Moda / Skirt: H&M / Necklace: Matr Boomie / Earrings: Greenola Style / Left wrist bracelet: Mitla Moda / Right wrist bracelets: various / Boots: Dr. Martens / Shoes: Alegria

I have to give some love to Mitla Moda this instant. I just got this black and red cotton top from them in the mail and it is the coolest. It’s hand-woven and fairly traded from Mexico. The top is breezy and billowy in all the best ways, and below the waist is all elastic smocking, so it fits perfectly under skirts. I want to try this style out with a pencil skirt too, or maybe some high waisted jeans. It’s made from a heavy cotton of beautiful quality, so it works great for all seasons.

(Though I don’t believe any clothing of any kind has been appropriate for this recent 100-degree heat. El Nino can’t come soon enough!)

Each piece of clothing Mitla Moda sells is hand-woven by masterful indigenous weavers in Oaxaca and procured through fair trade practices. You can truly see the love and skill in each stitch. Right now I’m totally coveting their Chickadee crop tops (they come in both black and white with embroidery in a whole rainbow of colors).

When I was taking these photos, I had a hard time choosing between my red mary janes and my Doc Martens, so I took photos with both (as you can see above). As long as this heat keeps hitting California, I’ll wear this outfit with the red mary janes, but once things start cooling down, it will be Doc Martens all day every day. With cute tights.

And of course, no outfit post is complete without an Odo outtake, right?


Monarchs, Bluebells, and Goldfish


My aunt Mary is rad. She takes naturally to the art of creating beautiful things, from crafts to baked goods and everything in-between. I’ve always loved and respected my aunt for her hard work and artistic skill, which shows in everything she makes. The list of things she’s excellent at is a long one, but I wanted to focus on one thing she’s been working on over the past few years that has really blown me (and the rest of the family) out of the water: clay bead making. She creates her own designs, molds them, stretches them, cures them, and cuts them all by hand. The results are stunning, and so intricate they appear hand-painted. I have quite a few pairs of her handmade clay earrings now, and I always get compliments every time I wear them. I wanted to show you all a few of her designs, because they’re just so beautiful and I believe the world needs to see them. You can see details of each of the pairs in the photo above, which is helpful for the goldfish design (the itty-bitty ones also pictured about seven photos down).




My aunt has been doing the monarch butterfly wing design for a while, and I think it may be my favorite. I get tons of compliments any time I wear any of her monarch designs. They’re just so lovely!




These purple flowers are some of her newer designs. I love how they hang as if they’re wet with rain, and they go so beautifully with my purple Greenola Style acai seed choker. I’m starting to think purple may be my color.


You can see these much better in the first photo of this post, but these are the adorable little goldfish earrings. They’re such a cute addition to any summer outfit. The design is just so simple and cheery!



These are some blue feathers she designed a while ago. They’re very fun to wear, and while I can attest that they look amazing with a short haircut, I bet they’d look really beautiful with long hair too.




This design reminds me of a mandala. I love how these pair with a choker, but they’re so intricate that they stand alone as statement earrings as well.

Clearly my aunt is a super badass at making beautiful jewelry. She doesn’t have a web presence yet, but if any of you are interested in her stuff, leave a comment here with your email address, or direct message me on Twitter @unpetitfauve, or email unpetitfauve [at] gmail [dot] com and I can help!

Red Hot

I thrifted this adorable dress recently. It’s 1960s vintage and handmade. It’s been a long time since I’ve bought a dress this short, but I couldn’t pass this vintage gem up! It has a very cute 60s print of flowers, hearts, and stripes in a chile-red and clementine-orange color scheme that screams “late summer.” This is the kind of dress you wear while drinking red sangria on a warm evening. Perfect for sending off this hot season. I’m more than ready to welcome the El Nino rains we’ve all been waiting for!

Arthur took this photo at our latest run to the local food truck gathering. We have a couple near us, and this particular one happens at a super dog-friendly shopping center that has a little fenced grassy area specifically for dogs. We got some tasty eats from the food trucks, then took Odo over to the tiny park so he could sniff around off-leash.



Sweetheart necklines have been an absolute staple for me this summer. It’s been a wonderful rediscovery. Back when I first willingly started wearing dresses (circa age 17), the sweetheart neckline was something I was immediately drawn to. Put it on a cotton sundress and it fits in well at a picnic in the park. Put it on a black wiggle dress and all of a sudden you’re Rita Hayworth. Sweetheart necklines are perfection.

The yellow dress is from the brand-spankin’-new ModCloth namesake line, which I got to try on during opening day of the ModCloth Fit Shop in San Francisco. I had a fitting appointment right when they opened the doors on the inaugural day, and I got to try on tons of cute pieces from this beautiful, high quality line. Plus, I returned later in the evening to talk to some of the ModCloth crew, have some refreshments, and listen to a jazz trio play some legit music. This yellow dress was definitely my favorite piece of all, though did make it out with a cardigan, a top, a skirt, and a necklace as well. Plus, the dress is named after one of my favorite cities in the whole world. It was meant to be!

The blue arrow print dress is from my beloved Chicago-based fair trade clothing company, Mata Traders. It was part of their summer line, which was essentially a massive, prolific, ethically-made tidal wave of adorable cuts and prints. The second the summer lookbook came out, I knew this dress had to be mine. It’s definitely my favorite from this line, and probably my favorite dress I’ve ever ordered from the company .

Now, I normally love pairing each of my outfits with a cool necklace, but with sweetheart necklines, I like to keep the neck unadorned. I will, however, wear cool earrings or a statement bracelet to liven things up. For the yellow dress, I chose my tried-and-true Saturn earrings and my awesomely huge 1930s bakelite bangle. For the blue dress, I went with a red vintage plastic bangle and my beautiful, long abalone earrings made by a native Yurok jeweler. And I sat on the table in our breakfast nook, making some seriously dramatic faces.



Happy Summer Solstice! (Yesterday.) I have no idea what’s going on with the length of this skirt, but somehow it works. I mostly just wear this with a crop top, big sunglasses, and Doc Martens or my equally 90s-alt-girl red mary janes (pictured above), and it’s a perfect summer outfit. And this Mata Traders beaded fringe necklace is just so perfectly summery too. I want to wear it all season long.

I’m a rainy weather girl, but as much as I’m dreading this summer’s upcoming 90-degree days and endless sun, I do like styling summer outfits. But mostly I just love spending outdoor time with my pooch, giving him strawberry ice cubes (his favorite) and filling up the kiddie pool for him to splash around in. Summer is so much more enjoyable when you have a canine companion to share it with.

7 Things I’ve Learned from Having a Buzzcut



Well, my buzzcut has been around for about two weeks now, and I’m loving it! It’s growing rather gracefully, and soon I’ll be back at my normal pixie again…before I shave it again in October for an inevitable Furiosa Halloween costume. Here are five things I’ve learned these past two weeks about having a buzzcut:

1. Both men and women like it
A buzzcut, like a pixie, has a gamine-type appeal that men and women both like. For those afraid of men not finding a buzzcut attractive, fear not, because as a woman who has a lot of male friends, I can tell you that I’ve gotten many compliments from guys I know and trust. And of course my wonderful husband also finds it very cute. I’ve gotten lots of compliments from women as well. It’s been generally well-received by all kinds of people. This kind of gutsy cut communicates confidence to others, and people respond positively to that.

2. Makeup and earrings are more awesome than ever
I actually bought eyeshadow for the first time since I was 18. All these years I’ve relied on eyeliner and some sort of nice lip color at the most, but with a buzzcut, I’m having a lot of fun playing up my big eyes. I’m also wearing big earrings, which are a buzzcut’s best friend. In fact, all my accessories seem to have gotten bigger, more colorful, or more theatrical (like the big sunglasses pictured, which I just got in my most recent Le Parcel box).

3. Scalp sunburns are a real threat
When I was getting the cut done initially, an older female client at the salon came up to me while I was getting my hair washed, and she said, “Hey, so I just wanted to tell you that cut looks great on you. I had one when I was your age. But I need to let you know: put sunscreen on your scalp or you will get horrible sunburns, and then this will happen,” and she turned around to reveal to me a bald spot on the back of her head. Now, I have incredibly thick hair, but I’m not sure if my cut is short enough to necessitate sunscreen. I haven’t worn any yet, and I haven’t felt any burning going on, but I’m completely paranoid and always touching my scalp to make sure it hasn’t happened. How do you apply sunscreen to a longer, very thick buzzcut like this anyway? Do you just rub it into your hair like leave-in conditioner? Now that the weather is heating up, I’m going to have to start doing the sunscreen thing for sure.

4. Hair grows fast
This is why you don’t have to be worried about your hair getting cut too short. Hair grows so fast it’s crazy. Let it do its thing.

5. My hair is insanely healthy right now, you have no idea
My pixie was pretty healthy to begin with, but now with the buzz, the hair is all new growth, and I’m washing it less, so it’s super soft and nice right now.

6. A lot of people tell you how they could never pull it off
People will tell you how great the cut looks on your head, but then go on about how they could never do it because they don’t have the “right” bone structure, or their head is “lumpy,” whatever that means. Sure, buzzcuts do look really good on certain faces, but my response is always: “If it makes you feel like yourself, do it. It doesn’t matter what kind of head or cheekbones you have. If you feel happy with this style, that’s all that matters. And others will pick up on that confidence too.” In the end, “pulling it off” doesn’t stem from what others think of you; it comes from how happy you are with yourself. And if you feel confident, others will think nice things about you, which is an added bonus. But really, it’s all about how you feel!

7. I personally haven’t encountered as much staring and negativity as I thought I would
Before I went for the clippers, I did a little research about buzzcuts on women online. I heard a lot of stories of women getting stared at or people pointing at them, so I was expecting some of that. If it’s happened, I haven’t noticed (and I’m very aware of my surroundings). I think I may have caught a woman staring at me recently, but it doesn’t seem to happen to me all that much. This may be because I live in a part of the US that’s known for openness and eccentricity, or maybe it’s because I only went down to a 4 at the shortest. I may have had a completely different experience if I had an even shorter cut.

I also expected I may get negative comments from some, but I haven’t really encountered much of that yet either. I’ve gotten maybe one or two weird comments, and when I went out one day without makeup an old woman told me “you remind me of my grandson” (still not sure if she was just trying to tell me I was sweet or if her eyesight was going and she thought I was a boy), but in general, if anyone has had something not nice to say, it seems they’ve kept it to themselves. I know for things such as physical appearance, a lot of negative comments will often come from people who don’t know you, and since I don’t really make chit-chat with people I don’t know, that may be why I haven’t gotten a lot of pushback on this haircut. Or maybe people just like it. Who knows?

If you’re thinking of getting a buzzcut, do know that some individuals may make stupid comments about you, or they may stare at you. Feel free to call them out on their ignorance if you feel so inclined.