Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Fall Fashion: The 70s and a Cape

Vera and I could so rock this look in a park. If only I didn't have to work and could just play and play. The style of the 70s is very popular at stores like H&M, Forever21 and Gap this fall. Choose some easy pieces to spruce up your wardrobe like a cape jacket, platform heels and a mini-shirt dress with leggings. Plop a slicked back bun on top of your head and a bold lip to get the whole effect. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

New York Fashion Week


As we hear from the ladies in the show Sex and the City, “Each year young 20 something women gather in New York in search of the two L’s: love and labels.” In keeping with that heart, today’s post is all about the labels you will see and when to see them during the Mercedes-Benz Fall Fashion Week in New York from September 8th to the 15th. Man, what I would give to be there right now! Fashion week is an opportunity for over 200 designers to launch their Spring/Summer 2012 collections and for us fashion junkies to get hooked on what we will want to wear after the winter passes. Impractical as runway fashion can be, we decided to unpack a designer each day  that has great ready to wear pieces in their collections.



















My New Favorite Designer Candela:

A collection inspired by Uruguayan designer Gabriella Perezutti, who now lives and works out of New York. Perezutti launched Candela in 2006 and the company has simply boomed ever since. Her pieces are inspired by her equestrian-gaucho past melded with her urban present. In her spring/summer 2011 collections she melds together femininity and tribal patterns to create some really gorgeous pieces. Candela offers a wide variety of ready wear pieces and some absolutely fantastic shoes. Check out the goods on her website. They have an awesome trunk sale going on right now for pieces from the Spring 2011 collection.


Stay up to Date:

Email/Phone: You can head right over to the website and fill in the drop-down link titled Get Updates to receive information on what is happening during each stage of Fashion Week and when the live streams will be airing. There is an email option and a text to phone option.
Twitter: The official Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Twitter from IMG Fashion, the company that produces the iconic New York, Berlin & Miami shows! @MBFashionWeek
Facebook: Follow the link to LIKE the page, see updates and photos.
By Designer: If you find a designer that you really like click on the link next to their name to browse their information. From there, type your information in the box titled Get Updates from this Designer to be in the know!
Live Video: Mercedes-Benz has done a brilliant job of setting up live video streaming of certain events throughout the week. To find the list of what you can stream straight to your computer check out the link here.





Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Get the Look: Adele VMA Outfit

What bad can be said about Adele? She is a stunning musician, songwriter, and as MTV's 2011 VMA Awards confirmed, she is just plain talented. Tragedy seems to strike when famous fashionistas hit the red carpet, but such was not the case for Adele who let her 50s inspired look carry her through the night to a stunning performance. Let's check out this gorgeously voluptuous lady's look! Check out the full post at Citizens of Beauty...Adele VMA Outfit

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

How to Wear It All Tucked In


Flip through any fashion magazine in the past month and you will see it: tops tucked into bottoms. At first, the whole tucking in thing seemed completely ridiculous to me and slightly reminiscent to elementary school when that was the only way you wore your shirts. But, as is my way to give everything a chance, I rocked the tucked in look until I could wear it with confidence. Here are some tips on following this trend. Check out my latest How-To posted on Citizens of Beauty.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Day 3 with a Blazer: Blazers for Every Body-Type


Menswear inspired fashion is all over the runway with tailored pants, polished oxfords and button-up shirts. Want to catch the menswear trend but can’t afford a wardrobe overhaul? Add a tailored blazer to your closet! The key? Choose one that is right for your body type and you’ll have a versatile piece you can wear everywhere. Head over to Citizens of Beauty to see my picks. Suit up! 


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Day 2 with a Blazer

So...day 2 of wearing a blazer. Sometimes fashion trends move in a direction you are uncomfortable with, but my philosophy is to just rock it till you own it! In that vein, I never thought that I would wear a blazer because I am too short and they would make me look too wide, but if I didn't try to find a way to incorporate menswear into my wardrobe, I would be left behind. So, with a little persistence (another piece of fashion advice I would give), I found a blazer that was the right shape for my body. Let's look how I rocked it today.

Tailored Blazer: I wrote a lot about why this piece works on my body yesterday, so if you missed that go read up! Today we will just talk about why it works with this outfit. In my opinion, a jacket that is longer than the bottoms you have makes you look naked underneath. When pairing a blazer with a dress, make sure the blazer hits from 3 to 6 inches above where the dress's hemline is. The red color of the blazer makes the red in my dress pattern pop out nicely incorporating the pieces well.

Patterned Dress: I got this as my vacation dress from Target. It is a great piece because of the simple shape and fun pattern, which made it easy to pack and wear wrinkled! The cut of this dress is great for most body types because it is cinched at the bust and moves away from the body; not so drastically that you will look pregnant, but just enough that you don't feel like your posture counts at every second in the day. The shape and structure of the blazer creates a balance with the flowy nature of this dress. Opposites.

Cowboy Boots: I have nothing to say about these except for that I love them.




Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Day 1 with a Blazer and Our 3 Year Anniversary: Fall Inspired Pieces

I am sure you all hoped the home-gown photos here were complete and over, but I just was so excited about my outfit today that I had to share it with you all! I worked to combine two of Fall's leading trends to create this look: menswear inspired pieces and long lean stripes. Today is also my 3 year wedding anniversary and so inspired to look cute I even did my hair. Here we go. 


Tailored Blazer: I first bought this blazer in an electric blue color,  but exchanged it for the rust-berry color instead because I felt the color would better carry me into Fall and Winter. Menswear inspired pieces are everywhere from blazers to trouser to oxfords. I chose this particular piece to incorporate into my wardrobe because it was still very feminine and flattering where a lot of the similar pieces in this trend that I have seen lately haven't been all that great. I tried on blazers at The Rack, Forever21, The Gap and H&M yesterday and, after my research, have really fallen in love with this piece because it is tailored at the natural waist with one-button closure and the inside having a drawstring cinch at the waist for even more shape. I am short and have wider shoulders, so wearing a blazer that is cut for a man will just make me look like a tiny mob boss. I love detailing on this blazer with the floral print silk lining in the sleeves and bodice; it makes me feel fancy. The length is also key to not making me feel wide. It hits me mid-thigh which makes my figure look slender and doesn't cut me in half like shorter pieces would. I need the length or a cropped piece. H&M: $39.95


Lace Tank Top: Have you ever watched Glee? They do these things called "mash-ups" every once in a while and I think that Fall fashion designers decided to follow suit. This top is a perfect example of lacy femininity meeting conventional structure and detail. I purchased this piece at Forever21 a while back and I have worn it so much since. The structure of the piece, loose but fitted in, "the right places," makes it perfect for a tucked-in look with this high waisted skirt. Forever21: $12.95


Striped Maxi Skirt: I hate stripes. I can promise you that is truth, but when I met this skirt my heart was softened a little tiny bit. The reason: the asymmetrical manner in which the stripes are sewn together from top to bottom. Stripes are everywhere this Fall and, for most, me being the exception, they are an easy trend to adopt because they don't require a lot of boldness to put on. You've probably been wearing stripes since you were in a onesie, so what makes them special now? The contrast they can provide in thematically in an outfit and the way they feed the 70s retro spirit that is lurking in every piece this season. H&M: $29.95


Leather Wedges: If you choose a pair of wedges that are you won't regret the money spent. I chose to wear them today because I wanted the height added to my body, avoiding the mob boss look again and because I want to hang on to the end of summer with my sandals. DSW: Mia Shoes. 


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Recovery

Recovery
I almost feel better. So I painted my toes, put on lipstick and some real clothes. You can't keep me down appendicitis!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Summer Travel, Ready for Any Occasion

Summer Travel, Ready for Any Occasion



















What would fill your suitcase to travel the world? Dreaming doesn't cost a thing!  If you haven't checked out Polyvore.com yet you really should! 












Get the Look: Vogue Cover - Sarah Jessica Parker


It seems that Sarah Jessica Parker has always been the star of Vogue’s Age Issue. Same is true this time around as the 47-year-old mother of three talks about balancing film, fashion and family. Parker is just one of those actresses I really fell in love with during college because of her character in Sex and the City, Carrie Bradshaw. The show for me fed something that I didn’t know existed in me, the fashion monster! I would watch the show while I riffled through my closet to attempt to emulate an outfit I had seen. Confession complete, I want to share a, black and white, Get the Look with you today with pieces under $50, here we go!


Check out the full article at Citizens of Beauty

Friday, July 22, 2011

StylePoint Portland - Lumafina Jewelry



I got the opportunity to guest blog for StylePoint Portland! Head on over and read the whole post about Portland-based jewelers Lumafina who specializes in melding opposing styles to create unique pieces.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

7 Pieces Not to Skimp On

Click link to see set item details.

One day a friend asked me where my dress was from, I smiled proudly and said, "Anthropologie of course!" She sort of scoffed at me and then proceeded to make a comment that went something like, "Well I just don't have the kind of money that you do to spend on clothes." Man, how horrible did I feel after that comment! I was embarrassed about my dress coming from a nice store, even though I bought it on sale and have worn it a ton since purchasing the piece. I started to worry that my clothing selection would alienate me, which is ridiculous because I like clothes and who cares! Then, I stopped worrying and began to think logically about how and when I had acquired all the nicer pieces in my wardrobe; all of these pieces met two criteria: I could wear them almost year-round and I have bought them slowly over the past 6 years. From that, I decided to give you the 7 pieces I would spend money on to enhance your wardrobe for many years.

1. Jeans: Although jean shopping can be almost more exhausting than swimsuit shopping, with persistence you can find a pair of jeans that does everything right for you no matter what size or shape. You don't have to spend a lot of money, just that you shouldn't be afraid to spend the money. Currently, I am in love with a pair I got from H&M in February because the fit is killer and they only cost me $49.99, but I would've paid twice that for how good they make me feel. Look for a darker wash, the color is dressier and can be worn in more settings than a lighter wash. Go for a name brand like Levis, 7 for All Man Kind, BigStar, or Hudson; they specialize in denim and will have a lot of styles to choose from and the nicer brands last longer--I promise! Try to find a good bargain for nice brands; some of my favorite jeans have come from The Nordstroms Rack or T.J. Maxx. My last piece of advise here: if you find a pair you really like, buy two!

2. Bra: We all have them and we all need to keep them inline. Don't skimp on your everyday bra. Be sure to get fit for a bra when you go to buy a new one because a woman's body can change quickly. Your whole look can be shifted by the quality of your bra. I found my favorite at Victoria's Secret two years ago, its from the Body by Victoria line. Another great place that I have loved in the past is GapBody. 

3. Warm Jacket: You shouldn't need to wear you snowboarding jacket to the company Christmas dinner just to keep warm. Invest in a warm winter jacket, like an wool peacoat or a lined leather one, that hits mid-thigh to your knees and you'll be sure to be warm for many seasons. I have had my peacoat since my sophomore year of high school and it is still a go to for me every winter. Thank you mom for shelling out that cash! Check out spring-time sales to snag a good jacket for the next year around, or place like The Rack who tend to have winter merchandise year-round. 

4. Running Shoes: Please, please, please don't just go to the sport's store down the street from your house and grab a pair of Nike's in your size to go run a marathon. You will hurt your body and you will have wasted money. I recommend going to a running store that watches your gait and foot balance to help you find a pair to meet your needs. They do walking shoes as well. A good pair of shoes will last from 300 to 500 miles. Once you are fit, you can buy the shoes off a site like Amazon for a little less than retail. 

5. Dress: Your every occasion dress doesn't have to be black anymore, you just need to have a dress that can work anywhere. The key is to find a style that fits your body type well in a color that will cross between seasons. For color, I would look for navy, charcoal grey or a deep purple. Both can be worn year round and if  you mix and match jewelry and shoes you are guaranteed to have a piece with staying power! For material, I would go with silk-spandex blend that can flowy in the summer and sleek in the winter. For cut, a-lines and empire waists will always be in style and v-necklines are good to open up your chest to make your silhouette look longer. You need something you can feel fantastic in, right off the hanger. 

6. Swimsuit: I loathe swimsuit shopping, even though I was on swim team through high school and continue to swim for exercise. There are plenty of tricks that people tell you about how to find a suit to match your body type, which are important, but I think your best friend is persistence and confidence. If you find a suit, after hours and hours, that you love buy it! Then, when you get to the pool, be sure to have that confidence you think everyone else around you has about the way you look. Ruffles or ruching over the tummy are add camouflage-power to any suit. Spend money for Spandex because it will hold in what you don't want out; droopy girls don't help anyone. 

7. Shoes: You don't have to wear black, super supportive Keds in order to have comfy feet all day long. I love a good pair of heels, and, if you are willing to invest, you can find some really comfy heels that have support and squish on the ball of your foot. When in doubt, buy a platform heel. The extra lift gives you height and takes away (some) of the pain. If you work on your feet choose a brand name shoe, like Dansco or Croc. Sometimes you can find gently-used pairs at Goodwill for really inexpensive. Brands like Born and Sofft have great lines of heels with cush and stability. 

Friday, June 24, 2011

What Fashion is About

After doing the Outfit-A-Day Project for 30 days I am more aware than ever that I have distinct feelings about fashion. I haven't gone to school for this, and I don't have a job in it, but for some reason I have self-appointed authority. Here is what fashion is "about" for me. 

1. Fashion is about individuality and character. You can communicate so much through what you wear and dictate how people respond to you. I like to pretend my look is one of individuality. Lately, I have decided to call it Grandma-Chic, with layers and prints adding dimension. The beauty of fashion, is it can every change with how your personality shifts, hourly if need be!

2. Fashion is about presentation. As a musician, I am always thinking about how to better present myself on stage so that I feel confident to do my job. I never want my clothing to be distracting, but I do want to present myself well. Remember to choose clothes that are appropriate for the setting you are in but still express you as you. 

3. Fashion is about fun. I don’t expect everyone to enjoy clothes as much as I do, but we have to wear clothing so why not find it fun? Try new colors or trends for each season to add a little flavor to your look. If you want to get a fun, trendy piece, I recommend shopping at a store like H&M or Forever21 that has cheaper prices for a piece you may toss after a couple months. But I cannot stress how important it is to invest in good, comfortable, long-lasting, (maybe more expensive), staple pieces.

4. Fashion is about feeling. Just ask my sweet husband Ryan. Often, he will sit on our bed and watch me build, rebuild, demolish and construct perfectly beautiful outfits, that of which he will always give me his opinion, just to hear me say, "I don't feel that shirt, or those pants, or that belt, I feel something else." I think I inherited this from the Art Director himself, my father; he feels his way through life just like me. So if you don't feel a look, then don't wear it! 

5. Fashion is about you! Never let the judgmental bug get a hold of you. Most assuredly I can say to you that, as long as what you are wearing is appropriate for the setting, it does not matter what other people say about your look. You know you and you know what you are comfortable wearing. Stay true to yourself and you will not miss!

    Thursday, June 23, 2011

    Outfit-A-Day Project: Day 30 Finale

     My last day! I started working on this blog concept because I was bored but it has taught me a lot about myself. I love fashion, but more importantly I love people. Like music, fashion is a way I can be in community with people, a way I connect and share. This adventure has been fun and, I hope, educational and inspiring for some of you! Let's check out today's look. 


    1. Cropped Sweater:Rust is a very popular color right now. I didn't think that I would like how it looked on me, so I went to my cheap style hunt. Stores like H&M are perfect to look to when you buy a piece in a trendy style or color because if you hate it or the style goes bye-bye you didn't spend too much. I chose this sweater for today's look because the open weave provides texture, one of my favorite things, creating interest in the whole look. The rusty color is not repeated in my skirt, but the hues are complimentary. 



    2. Long Necklace:
     Long necklaces draw the eye to think vertical length, for a petite person like me that is helpful. I chose a gold colored piece because it pops warmly off of my cooler colored rust colored sweater. ForLove21: starting at $3.80


    3. Pencil Skirt: Even though I love how I look in this skirt, wearing a pencil skirt is way sacry because it does not hide my trouble zone at all! Yet, to live fashionably, we  just have to wear pieces till we get comfortable in them, or comfortable in our own skin, whichever comes first. My trick with this piece was to go a size up that way it isn't tight on my waistline but still is snug everywhere else. If you want to tryout a pencil skirt, but are hesitant about the shape working on you body, go with a plain solid color like black or navy that will not draw as much attention as a floral print. As well, choose a length that is complimentary for your legs and shoe choice. I am short so the above the knee length is flattering, especially when paired with a taller boot. If you go for a knee length skirt, choose to work it with a pair of flats, or pumps (more skirt, less shoe). I chose this skirt for today's look I really like the fresh floral pattern for this fake summer weather and because my top is loose and having a snug bottom makes you appear balanced and not oversized.  Forever21: $14.80




    Ryan making me laugh with his ridiculous
    comments during our morning fashion shoot
    4. Blue Cowboy Boots: I know I have worn these boots a lot, but I can't stop raving about them! I am proud of them and they go with so much. I chose them for this look because I love how the blue pulls out the blue in my skirt and compliments the rust of my top. (Orange and blue are complimentary on that color wheel!) I also wanted the extra lift from the heel today to lengthen my look. One of my best thrift store finds.





    Wednesday, June 22, 2011

    Outfit-A-Day Project: Day 29

    Almost to the finish line! I got to wear my grubbies to work today since we had an office clean-up day, but I will spare you that look. After I got home and cleaned up, I headed over to the church to lead worship for our Wednesday night service. Here is what I came up with. (Say hello to Vera the Half-Vizsla in all my photos today.)


    1. Lace Cardigan: Love this cardigan because it is lightweight, has a great lace pattern and the color goes with just about anything. It is also a really functional piece in my wardrobe. For days like today, where I have to be on stage it is perfect. I don't want to have bare arms on stage, but I don't want to be too hot and sweaty, enter lace cardigan! Target. 


    2. Tribal Print Tank: My name is written all over this tank top. It is made out of modal, which is soft and moves really well with you, and I especially like this material, because it isn't as clingy as cotton/spandex blends can be. When choosing a tank top, consider body cut, strap shape and material to flatter your body shape needs. I chose it for this look today because I wanted a long tank to tuck into my pants and because I really like how the colors of the pattern pull out different colors on the rest of my look. Forever21.


    3. Looped Leather Belt: Gotta add a belt when you are rocking the tucked in look. It helps define your waist, which gives you more shape. I love how the camel colored leather pulls together the yellow and blue on this top. Forever21: $7.80


    4. H&M Jeans: I scored these several months ago and there is no turning back for me now! They go up a little higher, which helps keep my pooch tucked in, but not high enough to give me that horrible flat long and wide butt we all have seen and fear! The higher waist also makes the tucked in look work a little better, in my opinion. These are a darker wash which makes them more dressy and the slight flair leg adds to my curves in good ways. I chose them here because I wanted to tuck my top in and to have the darker wash make my look dressed-up. 

    5. Leather Wedges: Please, stop what you are doing and go get yourself a pair of wedges for this summer, please. If you choose a pair that it comfy you won't regret the money spent. I chose to wear them today because I wanted the height added to my body. DSW: Mia Shoes. 

    Tuesday, June 21, 2011

    Outfit-A-Day Project: Day 28

    Are you bored of me yet? I took a break over the weekend, mostly because I couldn't get Ryan to hold still long enough to take a photo of me. Let's take a peek at today's look, all primed and ready for the awesome weather!


    1. Black Cardigan: Staple piece people! Please go buy yourself a black cardigan, please, it will be so useful to you I can't even explain it. I wear this one to weddings that may get chilly and the sheeny cotton makes it seem just dressy enough. Today I grabbed it because I knew I would be cold in my office till the afternoon. The back works well with the bright blue shorts I have on, making the colors really pop off of each other. Forever21. 


     2. Pastel Scarf: Very proudly I wear this scarf today because I learned a new way to tie it this weekend and I feel accomplished! I chose this scarf today to tie in the colors on my leggings and Toms. Forever21. 


    3. Ruffle Edges Tank: I have worn this tank so many times it feels because it is a really easy piece to add dimension to any look. The ruffle edges on this tank give it a bit more fancy than the regular white top would under my cardigan. I chose this piece today because the texture of the ruffles create interest on the plain colors, the tank is long so I can easily tuck it in, and because it is form-fitting (not the same as skin-tight). H&M:$9.95. 


    4. Side-Tie Shorts: This pair of shorts has so much going for detail, that it compensates for the solid color. The back is an elastic band, which provides for no zippers or buttons. The side tie and pleated front add a lot of interest. The shape with the pleats can be intimidating and for people who are not ready to draw attention to their hips I recommend trying a more structured material  for a pair of shorts. The best part: these shorts have pockets. The Rack: $14.95


    5. Short Leggings: Love my short leggings because they help make shorter styles appropriate for a lot of settings. I chose this teal pair because they pull out the teal in my scarf and draw everything together from top to bottom. Forever21: $3.80


    6. Toms: I love my Toms. I could wear them all summer long. So comfy you should own some. They work with this look because they are a neutral color and the same material texture as my scarf. Toms.com: $54

    Nude Pink Color Palette

    Nude Pink Color Palette

    Pied a Terre vintage dress
    £128 - houseoffraser.co.uk

    Juicy Couture puffy jacket
    £580 - women.fashionbeans.com

    Stella McCartney underwire bra
    £35 - theoutnet.com

    Kimberly McDonald butterfly earrings
    £2,350 - brownsfashion.com

    Red Herring gold bangle
    £8 - debenhams.com

    Laura Mercier Lip Glace
    $22 - nordstrom.com

    Audrey Hepburn
    $42 - tradingphrases.com

    Saturday, June 18, 2011