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30 Wears: Medium Aqua Peplum Top & Black Capris

For today's 30 Wear post, I'm going to feature two items meeting my 30 wears + <$1 cost per wear (CPW) goals that have been mainstays of my casual summer for style for the last 4 years. As always, a thank you to Mica for inspiring me with her 30 Ways to Wear series.


The medium aqua peplum t-shirt knit top was a sale purchase from Lands End (I also bought it in bright pink), and the black polished capris were a sale purchase from Kohls (I also bought them in navy). I bought both pieces in May 2018 for under $20 each. Although sales can definitely lead us astray when we view items through "sales goggles" that cause us to purchase unnecessary duplicates, pieces that don't fit well in our wardrobes and become closet orphans, or things that aren't quite right...all of which can result in items that never/rarely wear, that we wear but don't really like, or that don't really earn their keep in our closets. But when you make a smart purchase at a sale price, that lower price tag does make it easier/faster to hit your cost per wear (CPW) targets! After 30 and 33 wears, this top and pants are both under my second-tier CPW target of <$0.65 per wear. And both pieces continue to fit me well, work with my style, and are in great condition so that CPW will keep going down as I continue to wear them.

Medium aqua peplum top - Lands End - $16.99 - 5/2018

Total wears: 30

Cost per wear: $0.57

Additional wears to reach $1 CPW: n/a

Additional wears to reach $0.65 CPW: n/a


Black polished capris - Croft & Barrow/Kohls - $19.99 - 5/2018

Total wears: 33

Cost per wear: $0.61

Additional wears to reach $1 CPW: n/a

Additional wears to reach $0.65 CPW: n/a


Today I will share 9 summer OOTD I have photographed featuring one or both of these items.


#1: With the top's high volume and the pants' slim cut, the two pieces work very well together in outfits, using a "long over lean" outfit formula. My workplace definitely skews casual in the summer so wearing crop pants is perfectly fine; I like to wear these "polished capris" to work in the summer because they have a smooth, neat, slim appearance. In this in-office summer work outfit, I dressed up the look with a striped structured blazer and leather buckle flats.

#2: Another in-office work outfit, this time a more casual version with no topper layer. The loose cut of this top makes it an easy, comfortable option as a stand-alone summer option. I added interest to this outfit with a bold coral floral scarf (creating a dynamic complementary color scheme) and finished it with leather cap toe flats.

#3: In this WFH summer outfit, I wore the aqua top with another brightly colored scarf over a stretchy denim pencil skirt to stick with the long over lean silhouette.

#4: Even though black is one of my least-worn neutrals in summer, I still find these black capris to be very useful in my closet. This in-office work outfit is a simple black outer column with a T + necklace in blending shades of teal/aqua.

#5: In this in-office work outfit, a black inner column is layered with a variegated cardigan (with a bit of black in it) and a grey-on-black cat scarf. The scarf and cardigan work well as a print mix due to the differing scales of the prints and the fact that the two colors of the cat print are both present in the cardigan.

#6: Here is a casual weekend version of the variegated cardigan + polished capris combo with a White Rabbit graphic tank. I picked up the grey and black from the cardigan in choosing a grey planet necklace and grey leopard print flats as accessories.

#7: In my "how to wear black pants" post, I discussed how to achieve a cohesive look by adding prints that contain black so that the black pants are integrated into the outfit. This silky black floral sleeveless blouse (which recently appeared in my turquoise outfits post) has a great colorway for this technique. Here I used "road map styling" to draw out the blush pink and teal from the print with the cardigan and ballet flats.

#8: I used a variant on the "print containing black" strategy in this comfortable in-office work look. The grey/purple floral T has an extremely dark purple in it that is almost indistinguishable from black, and that was enough to integrate the black capris in the outfit. I love this light purple cardigan, which is such a great match to the 2022 Pantone Color of the Year Very Peri...despite dating to 2018. It's great when you can shop your closet for trendy colors to keep your look current.

#9: Finally, I am such a fan of this weekend look with a black inner column topped with a white cardigan and a thin flowy print scarf...which contains neither black nor white! Goes to show how versatile a black (or other neutral) inner column of color can be as a base for putting together a creative outfit.

Do you wear a black column of color (inner or outer column)? What kind of tops do you like as stand-alone options in hot weather?


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