April 6, 2018 – Formal Fashion (OOTD #261)

My parents said I wouldn’t have to deal with formals after my high school prom — they were wrong.

Granted, my dorm formal wasn’t nearly the level of formality my high school prom was   — for that, I had a big ball gown, and a corsage, and did all of the regular cheesy high school prom stuff. For my dorm formal, I just took a shower and did nicer makeup than usual, which, come to think of it, was probably all I needed to have done for my high school prom in order to have a good time and would have left me significantly less stressed.

I was kind of concerned about how my dorm formal was going to go, as I’m not much of a partier to begin with and a lot of my friends were bringing dates while I was not, but it turned out pretty fun. It really was basically just like a high school dance, except there were no teachers to pat you down for alcohol when you first came in.

The theme was technically masquerade, but I don’t really know of anyone who kept up with that beyond taking a few cute pictures with masks beforehand. I mean, that’s what  I did. I definitely did not keep the mask that’s perched atop my head in some of these photos on all night — in fact I think I left it on a table somewhere and lost it. Oops.

In the end, I’m definitely glad I paid the $5 and went. I had been considering staying in, since, like I said, I don’t usually party and I was concerned my more party-enthused friends would find me boring to be around, but I managed to have fun, even though it wasn’t really an environment I typically hang out in. Whether or not I was boring to be around isn’t something I can really speak to, but I think I made for a good fake extrovert, at least for the night.

Plus, I got an excuse to wear this gorgeous vintage dress I got from a flea market over winter break for $8! It’s not really something I can just wear out and about, so I was waiting for the perfect occasion to wear it — and I think this was it. I looked very nice among the gold balloon decorations of the ballroom, if I do say so myself.

Honestly, wearing the pretty dress made all of the socializing-in-a-public-place woes worth it for me. If any of my friends or family is reading this, keep that in mind: if ever you need to coax me out of the house, promise me that you’ll take pictures of me in pretty clothes against a pretty background and I’ll probably crawl out of my cave.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Dress: Vintage (thrifted)

March 30, 2018 – This Isn’t Chicago (OOTD #258)

As much as I’ve complained about Catholic school’s somewhat restrictive practices, especially during gLent, I must say I do appreciate things like getting off for Easter Break.

I’ve always gone to public school, so Easter weekend or Good Friday have never warranted a break from school. Actually, I do have this vague memory of, back when I lived in Louisville, there being a vote in the school board about whether we should have off for Oaks Day (a big horse race at Churchill Downs right before the Derby) or Good Friday, and they chose Oaks.

So it was a treat to get off a few days for Easter. A lot of my friends went home, but it didn’t really seem like it was going to be worth the time and money for me to fly back to Kentucky, so I just hung out on campus.

My original plan was to try to go into Chicago — there’s a train that goes in every two hours from the South Bend Airport for only $12, and the trip is only about two hours (one hour if you account for the time difference!). I thought it would be a fun little weekend getaway to a real city and a way to get away from the Notre Dame bubble.

I didn’t want to go alone though, and I didn’t have any friends who were willing or able to join me. Sadly, it looks like I am not going to make it into Chicago until perhaps after the semester is over — so I’m looking at maybe trying to go for a day when my parents come in to help me move out. Parents: if you’re reading this, which I know you are, you should take note of that 😜

Instead of getting out of town for Easter Break, I had a friend suggest a trip to the Mishawaka Mall, only about 20 minutes by bus away from campus. It wasn’t Chicago like I’d hoped, but it was off campus — and that’s really what I was craving.

It turned into a little bit of an adventure when we wound up taking the wrong bus and going to downtown South Bend instead of Mishawka and getting stranded at the bus station for 30 minutes until another bus could take us the other direction. It was fun though because it was something other than Notre Dame.

I got my pictures done at the mall nearby the Easter Bunny setup. Why is there no Easter Bunny in these shots then? Because this is actually the opposite side of the setup — the Easter Bunny is sitting in a chair directly opposite where I’m standing here. I didn’t have the time to wait in line or the money to pay to get my picture done with a guy in a fur suit, so I figured I’d cheat a little and still use the same background.

Anyway, I’ve got an exam to study for for tomorrow, so it’s time for me to wrap this up. That’s it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Dress: Vintage (thrift)

Top: Target

Hat: Kohl’s (I think? I’ve had this guy for ages — since I was maybe 10. One of my favorite pieces in my wardrobe anyway!)

March 28, 2018 – Hire Me Please (OOTD #256)

Can you believe it was warm enough last week for me to wear a skirt with just my bare legs exposed?

Me neither — because today, like the day before it and the day before that, it is snowing. It’s April, and it’s snowing. It’s April, and I’m still wearing my heavy winter coat, two sweaters, and boots.

Forgive me for going on so much about the weather recently, but I’m just in awe of the fact that the winter sticks around for so long in this part of the Midwest. It almost makes me miss the South. At least, I miss the flowers we usually get around this time in Kentucky — I don’t know if I also miss the humidity that came with the flowers.

Still trying to get a job, annoyingly. I’ve had a few interviews, but nothing’s come of them yet. The fact that I can’t start work for another month, that I’ll have to take off two weeks in the middle of the summer to go to Nepal, and that I can only work for two-three months in the first place really doesn’t seem to impress any potential employers.

What on earth happened in the last 20 years that made it so a college kid can’t get a full time job at the mall for the summer flipping burgers or folding clothes? I’m finding those bitter Tumblr posts about being a broke Millennial (though I’m definitely more of a Gen Z person) more and more relatable. Seriously — all of my friends who are also looking for summer employment (you know…all three of them who aren’t from Notre Dame and rich) are coming across the same issue I am.

It’s enough to make me want to drop the history major and switch to something more job-friendly like engineering or business. I keep seeing all of these cool internships for business and science and engineering students — but of course, I am not one of those. The issue there, of course, is that those don’t interest me, and what does interest me — law — doesn’t seem to have any interest in undergraduate students who haven’t gotten into law school yet.

Ho, hum. Hopefully, my employment chances will go up each year as I get older and get closer to completing my $200,000 degree.

That’s it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Dress: Vintage (thrift)

Sweater: Ralph Lauren (thrift)

March 26, 2018 – Neon Pink (OOTD #254)

Favorite hobby: writing these blogs under my notes class during boring lectures.

In my Philo class, there’s very little to do in class, especially when my professor gets going on a tangent. He’s an intelligent guy, but he likes to hear himself talk, and I don’t really.

It’s great, because I get to appear like I’m engaged and taking close notes, when in actuality, I’m only half paying attention and instead getting some other (still important) work done.

I’ve been developing a really nasty cold lately, which I’m kind of bitter about because I thought for certain I was done with being sick for this school year. I pretty much avoided falling ill all winter, and I figured that meant that I had successfully dodged the bullet. I was mistaken, as my cough and stuffy nose prove.

I was also wrong about thinking the winter was over — it’s never over in South Bend. Here we are in April (well, I’m writing and publishing this in April. The outfit here is from March), and just yesterday, it snowed. I love the snow, but I’m over it.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life here at Notre Dame. Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Dress: Hollister

Jacket: Vintage (thrift)

March 21, 2018 – Insert Joke About Being Hot Here (OOTD #251)

Meilin’s adventures in exploring the art building at night continue!

At this point, I’m just heading out to Riley every night that I don’t get my pictures done earlier in the day — in fact, I’ll probably do the same today, as I didn’t get my pictures done at lunch like usual on Tuesday. It’s basically my second home.

The longer I spend in Riley, the more I come across unusual settings that make for interesting backgrounds, like this yellow paint cabinet. I loved both the bright color, and the “Flammable” text printed on it — figured it would make for some funny Instagram captions.

The summer job/internship search is in full swing, just as it was in April of last year. If you look back far enough in the archives of this blog, you’ll see my discussions of interviewing and trying to get hired last summer. You’ll also see that the job I ended up working last summer was really not any fun and a terrible fit for me, so I’m trying to avoid that by getting on the whole application thing earlier.

Honestly though, I’m realizing I probably could have been even earlier. Getting a job is hard, especially when you’re just an unexperienced college kid like me who can only work for a few months.

Worst case scenario, I’m sure I can get a part time job maybe at a local restaurant. It’s not really what I want to do, and it doesn’t really contribute at all to my resume, but it makes money, and that’s what’s important. I’m jealous though of my friends who are able to study abroad or work academically or professionally-relevant unpaid internships over the summer.

Anyway, pray for me, wish me luck, whatever you want to do to send me some good will as I try to procure some summer employment.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Jacket: Vintage (thrifted)

Shirt: Thrifted

Jeans: Abercrombie

Boots: Ralph Lauren

February 8, 2018 – Dad Plaid (OOTD #222)

This is some rad plaid.

I got this plaid, dad-like jacket from a local vintage shop back home in Lexington, and it’s been in fairly heavy rotation ever since. Or, at least, heavier ratio than I would have expected when I first purchased it – I figured I’d wear it every once in a while, but it’s really grown on me. It’s super easy to style because its pattern makes it look fancy without the need for me to layer a ton of stuff on top of it.

This particular outfit was borne out of another one of my “oh-no-I-just-woke-up-and-it’s-ten-minutes-before-my-exam-begins-and-the-building-is-a-fifteen-minute-walk-away” moments.

Those moments occur much more than I would like.

Anyway, in moments like this, pieces like the plaid dad jacket come in handy.

Like I said, its bombastic pattern makes it super easy to style, so I’m able to throw an outfit together around it really quickly in order to make it out the door on time. Since the plaid pattern is so loud, everything else has to be very simple and plain, and I don’t have to think too hard about what to pair with it. A plain sweater, plain pants, and plain shoes, and I can go.

You’ll also notice that this outfit, like yesterday’s, follows my basic everyday outfit formula – jacket, sweater/shirt, skinny pants (in this case leggings), and an accessory. It’s formulaic, but the formula works.

And when you’re faced with the decision to either be late to your exam or opt for a formulaic outfit (and very little makeup, you might also notice), you take the formula.

Also, can we just talk about this background? I’m in the art room again (my typical Thursday photographer friend was out of town), and I have no idea what this installation is. It was brand new when I got in there, so I assume some class is using it, but for what? I don’t know, but I figured it’d make for an interesting composition.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Jacket: vintage (thrifted)

Sweater: Aeropostale

February 3, 2018 – Rose Gold (OOTD #218)

I don’t believe I’ve ever shown my dorm room on here.

Well…tada! Here it is: plain white walls, some command hooks, a radiator, and that’s all.

No, of course, my room is significantly more decorated than that – we’ve got four people living in here together. This white wall is probably the emptiest and cleanest part of the entire quad.

These shots were done in the middle of middle of the night with my phone set up against a bean bag, much like I did with these shots in an empty art room when I was unable to find anyone to do pictures for me one day.

Why did I feel the need to do these pictures at such an odd hour? It all has to do with that little faint hint of pink color in my hair. That’s the result of the Clairol Color Crave Hair Makeup that was sent to me by Influenster to review.

So it was late at night on Friday, and I had the room to myself. After I finished my homework for the evening (well…my homework’s really never finished – I just eventually give up on it or pass out from exhaustion), I decided to get to work testing my product and writing my review.

I fixed my hair all nice and pretty, did my makeup, and took some selfies for my review. And then I thought – why stop there? Might as well get some OOTD photos out of this too. It’s not often that I take the time to make up my face, so when I do, I need photographic evidence to prove it actually happened, you know?

By now, it was pretty late at night – too late to reasonably ask someone to do my pictures for me. But thankfully, there was this beautifully plain white wall in my room, so I set up my phone camera and my Apple watch’s remote photo-taking features, and I had at it.

So that’s the story of the outfit I wore and photographed in the middle of the night just so that the makeup and hair look I had put together didn’t go to waste. Was it more effort than it was worth? …maybe. But at least I got a funny story to write about in this blog post.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Shirt: Vintage (thrifted)

Jacket: Vintage (thrifted)

Pants: The LOFT

February 1, 2018 – For The Love of February (OOTD #216)

Did you know? February is actually my favorite month.

I know a lot of people aren’t a fan of it – it’s normally pretty grey, cold, and in some parts, snowy. There’s also not really much to get excited for, save for maybe Valentine’s Day, which, as holidays go, is about as applicable to me as as Hanukkah. It’s nice to observe from a cultural standpoint, but I don’t necessarily participate in the festivities, you know?

I think it has to do with the way that February has always been a month that’s heavy in snow days – not that I get any of those now now that I’m in the Chicago area, where several feet of snow is just an average Tuesday.  I wonder what it would take for Notre Dame to cancel classes for the weather? I feel like even in the event of a blizzard, they’d have us trudging through the ice and winds unless Mary herself descended from the heavens and told Father Jenkins to let us stay in.

I heard a horror story once of some time in the early 2000’s when, upon students’ return from winter break, the windchill was 40 below on campus. If that happens while I’m here, I think I may have to reconsider the winter’s status as my favorite season.

As for February though, I feel like no one else tends to really favor (or even like) it, so it’s in need of some love. Plus, by proclaiming it as my favorite month, I get to tell people about the time my junior year of high school that I only went to school for one week the entire month of February because Kentucky didn’t know how to handle #snowpocalypse2016.

Notre Dame’s excessive snowfall hasn’t yet hampered my love of the stuff, though. It helps that I swear it actually makes things feel warmer here. And when it’s 0 degrees Fahrenheit when you wake up for your 9:30AM, you take anything you can that’ll act as a buffer to the horrific winds.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

jacket: vintage (thrifted)

jeans: American Eagle

top: Forever21

January 29, 2018 – Art Student Aesthetic (OOTD #213)

I guess I can finally consider myself an “art student.”

I never expected to be able to say that, actually – I thought for certain I was going to be done with art classes after high school.

Not done with art entirely, but certainly done with formal lessons in art a part of graded classes. I always figured I would continue it as a hobby on the side, but I was pretty burnt out by the end of high school of staying up late every night, struggling to compete the numerous art classes I was never able to take the time to develop as much as I would have liked to anyway.

But then it turned out that I missed it. I had hoped Notre Dame would at least have some sort of art club, but for whatever reason, we don’t. The visual arts don’t really have a very strong presence here, which I can kind of understand, given we’re not an art school, but they’re so nonexistent it’s a little bizarre.

They do have a very small art and design department, which, now that I’m attempting to minor in studio art, I suppose I’ve joined. I’m in a beginning drawing class right now, which, while not particularly creatively challenging, is still nice to break up some of my more writing-based academic courses.

So here’s my best attempt at embodying my newfound art student identity – plaid pants, baseball shirt, my “tattoo artist” jacket, and of course, my boyish pixie cut. It’s not the sort of look that would make it onto a “preppy fashion” Pinterest board, but I think it’s interesting nonetheless.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Shirt: Zumiez

Jacket: Vintage (thrifted)

Pants: The LOFT

January 16, 2018 – Golden Hour at the Golden Dome (OOTD #203)

Okay, so I’m technically not standing at or near the Dome here, but whatever.

As much as I appreciate the Dome for being iconic and a huge staple of campus and what the outside world imagines when they think of us, it’s kind-of weird taking photos in front of it, you know? It makes you look like an outsider to your own school, even though  I’m definitely a student here and I literal pass Main Building (super creative name, right? Our big famous building with the iconic golden dome atop it is literally just called “main building”) every day.

Instead, I take photos in front of boring locations like South Dining Hall or my own dorm building because I literally have no where else to go and it’s totally not at all awkward when people pass me posing in the middle of the sidewalk on their way to get food.

This lighting though? Amirite?

Last semester, I found myself usually forcing very kindly requesting that my friends take pictures for this blog after lunch every day, with some exceptions when I had to beg someone to take time out of their probably busy schedule and meet me somewhere to do them. This semester, or at least this semester as it’s played out so far, has turned out that I’m meeting people for dinner more often than lunch, meaning my photos have got to be done before sunset.

Today’s shots were taken pretty much literally at sunset – golden hour. It’s a little more orangey than I typically go for, but beggars can’t be choosers, so I take whatever I can get. Regardless, I do rather like the peachy, glow effect. It reminds me of the warmth of the sun that I haven’t seen since I left Kentucky and came back to the frozen cornfields of Indiana.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Jacket: vintage

Sweater: thrifted

Jeans: Abercrombie

Scarf: the LOFT