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New Beginnings: In Style and Life

By October 3, 2012 Fashion, Life, Stylish Thoughts

“Just around the corner in every woman’s mind – is a lovely dress, a wonderful suit, or entire costume which will make an enchanting new creature of her.”
— Wilhela Cushman

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Fall is an effervescent time, when renewal is fresh in the air. The September issues have hit the stands and have since been discarded. New trends are already lining the racks in your favorite clothing stores. The world is abuzz with newness.

Fresh on our minds is transformation. “Who will I be this season?” “What do I want to portray to the world?” From school age kids to middle aged housewives, buying new clothes is as much about looking good as it is about creating a newer, better you.

I can recall, going off to college, plowing through fashion magazines, circling hot items, dog earring pages, tearing sheets and concocting a vision of who I wanted to be and what I wanted to look like. What would my fall look be? Tweeds and smart trousers! Grown-up blouses to be taken seriously. Skirts, skirts and more skirts! Durable yet stylish tote bags.

This process of defining who we are through fashion has become a crucial first step into who we hope to become in life. What we wear is our first defense. Before we open our mouths, our clothes do the talking and what they say can be as varied and diverse and the person who inhabits them. Clothes are not a substitute for substance, but they are the window dressing for the soul.

Even to this day, I use my clothing and style as a barometer. My clothes don’t define me but they are a key part in my expression. I doodle new styles I’m loving, what patterns I’m obsessed with (I have plaid on the brain) and what my style point of view will be.

In life’s changes; starting a new job, going away to school, moving to a new city, we must outfit ourselves for who we are and also who we hope to become. New clothing like new beginnings are less about the transition and more about coming into your own.

How are you renewing your wardrobe? Your life?

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50 Shades of Accessories

By September 18, 2012 Accessories, Fashion, Jewelry, Pop Culture, Shoes, Trends
50 Shades of Accessories

No, I will not discuss the book to which this title is referring. I refuse to waste any time or creativity trying to voice the anger that the book’s popularity innately causes in me. Instead, I’ll focus on the positive influence the rising popularity of BDSM has had on the accessories department. Equal parts cheekiness and punk, this trend certainly adds a twist to any regular outfit.

I was initially inspired by a pair of rose gold handcuffs that Rachel Zoe received as a present from her husband on one episode of her show. Much to my chagrin, I found out they cost over $12,000 in real life .

Many ShopStyle and Net-a-porter searches later, I have come up with a few alternatives for those of us that unfortunately don’t have our own TV shows nor get paid upwards of $1 million/year to dress someone. Here you go – and enjoy!

Handcuff Bracelets

Necklaces

Spiked shoes

Will you be breaking out your crop and spikes and participating in this painless trend?

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Excessorize: Detachable Collars

By August 7, 2012 Accessories, Fashion, Personal Style
DIY Detachable Collar


Collared shirts are a wardrobe staple. But what if you want to feel polished and buttoned-up without the extraness of sleeves and all that jazz? Detachable collars have been seen (and worn) all over town and with good reason: they’re cool and are an easy accessory to pull off (literally). Here are a few cool detachable collars we love.

1. Peter Pan Nautical Collar, 2. Printed Calf Hair Collar 3. Metal Collar with Aluminum Roses 4. Little Fille Collar  5. Cream Floral Collar 6. Rave Spiked Collar

 What do you think of detached collars?

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Well Heeled: Aperlaï Shoes

By August 1, 2012 Personal Style, Shoes
Aperlai

Aperlaï Paris is a luxury accessory line founded in 2009 by Alessandra Lanvin. Named for an ancient Lycian city, Aperalï shoes feature geometric shapes, graphic lines and exotic skins. Part Star Trek part  Asian Geisha, Aperali are pure luxe and true eye candy. The hot pink “Spockette” on the bottom are my favorites.

$$$: A pretty penny, $600-$1,000

What do you think of Aperalï  Shoes?

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Labels We Love: Virgos Lounge

By July 31, 2012 Fashion, Personal Style
virgoslounge

Virgos Lounge is a London based womenswear line that specializes in contemporary silhouettes with ornate details and vintage styling. Founded by three Virgo friends, Virgos Lounge has been seen on stars like Angela Simmons and Alexandra Burke. Feminine and flirty, Virgos Lounge dresses are perfect for an evening out or any other special occasion. I love the floral two piece and the off-the-shoulder draping and of course being a Virgo I’m enamored with the name!

Check out more lovely pieces from Virgos Lounge

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The Art of Playing Dress Up: Writing your Fashion Story

By July 30, 2012 Fashion, Personal Style
Playing Dress Up Tracee Ellis Ross

It happens when I’m feeling unbelievably bored. Or when or I’m undeniably sad. When I’m about to hit the town or just on a random Sunday. Alone in my apartment, something comes over me and I want to explore who I am and who I can be.

Turning on my Spotify and opening my closet doors, I embark on a play-filled journey to the potential of clothes.

Playing dress-up is much more than childs’ play. For fashion lovers it’s a way to mix things up, shake up the status quo and discover what styles make you feel alive. There’s really no rhyme or reason to playing dress-up. Try on a dress here, pull out a skirt here. The only rule is to have fun. Make faces, dance, mix patterns, take pictures, clash, mash-up and come out feeling more like yourself than ever.

Actress and comedian, Tracee Ellis Ross said of playing dress up

“Part of the process is that I play dress up when I have free time and photograph the looks (something I learned from when I worked in the magazine world). It’s like I’m prepping for the fashion story of my life.”

The fashion story of your life, is peppered by amazing clothes and true expression of who you are. Just like a chef, chopping and adding a spice to create a new flavorful concoction, you are the cook, your wardrobe the spice and your style the end result: a unique blend of savoriness.

When it feels like my wardrobe isn’t truly reflective of who I am I play dress-up. I pair things like I’ve never worn them. Cast aside things that no longer feel right and I have a great time getting better acquainted with my clothes. If I’m feeling particularly keen, I take photos or write down exceptional combinations to wear again.

Playing dress-up strengthens my style muscle. It jogs my creativity and when I’m done I’m ready to share my new fashion story with the world.

How do you rewrite your fashion story? Do you play dress-up?

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3 Color Combinations That Seem Wrong But Are So Right

By July 23, 2012 Fashion, Personal Style, Style Inspiration, Style Inspiration
Color Combinations - Stylish Thought

I recently cleaned out my closet (which I try to do once a year and donate anything that I haven’t worn in the past year) and timed it so that I could give the clothes to my little sister, who was in town visiting me from Chicago.

Well, it turns out, I needn’t have done that. My sister pointed out to me that pretty much all of my clothes are full of color. And she really only wears anything in the black-gray-brown/earth tones range. She’s right. From brights to pastels, I love me some color. I would much rather buy a shirt with an interesting shape in a solid color to let the design stand out.

My love of color has led me to some interesting color combinations that, if I hadn’t picked them out myself, I probably wouldn’t have agreed with in theory. Let me share (and hopefully inspire):

TEAL & RED

The Clothes  Horse

Any good graphic designer will tell you that you should never pair colors like teal and red together; they seem to “vibrate” to the naked eye. But that’s part of the fun! It’s certainly eye-popping and can work well when you put them together in the right combination. Check out this top - wear it under a navy suit to make your work outfit snappier, or, go crazy and pair it with red jeans to really amp it up. If you want something subtler to wear around the house, here’s something that looks cute and comfy.

PINK, ORANGE & RED

B. Jones Style

I don’t just mean for bridesmaids and weddings. When you pair two shades that are awfully close together, it can hurt the eyes which naturally try to delineate the colors. This is particularly true for warmer colors (we don’t have this problem with blue and green, for instance). But this bright combo can add some cheer to any outfit, and it works best when you pick a blue-ish pink and a deeper orange. I have an unabashed love of everything Alexander McQueen, so you can bet your butt that I was excited when this dress went on sale.  Here’s a less expensive option that is equally vibrant.  And this shoe is sure to add a touch of sweetness to any outfit.

NAVY BLUE & BLACK

Stockholm Streetstyle

(Fun fact: did you know that “navy” is actually more of a gray? It’s different than “navy blue.”) See above on why colors that are similar can be problematic. But, this is a sophisticated way to add a bit of color in an otherwise funereal (ok, fine, or “sophisticated” for you New Yorkers wearing all black) outfit. Throw on a black t-shirt with this skirt and you’re set to go – see, not a fashion faux pas. Throw this jacket (for a sophisticated look) or this jacket (in blue for an edgier look) over your LBD. Or, skip the LBD altogether and go with an LNBABD (little navy-blue-and-black dress...doesn’t roll of the tongue quite the same way).

Pro Tip: To hopefully inspire you to add some more color to your wardrobe, check out the blog plentyofcolour.com. She is able to look at the world through the lens of color and find beauty in unexpected places!

How do you mix color? What color combinations are you dying to try?

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Well Heeled: Charlotte Olympia Pre-Fall Collection

By July 16, 2012 Fashion, Personal Style, Shoes
Charlotte Olympia Pre Fall Collection

Charlotte Olympia’s shoes are sought after and lusted over. With teethering stilettos, boxed platforms and tongue-in-cheek designs. Charlotte Olympia shoes are quirky yet still sexy and true throwbacks to a time when ladies wore high heels and hats. The newest pre-fall collection is a kissing affair with lip prints, florals and studs. Don’t these make you want to pucker up?

Charlotte Olympia Pre-Fall collection ($800-$1000)

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