Wednesday, December 17th 2008

line i love: robert rodriguez

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It’s hard to play favorites with hundreds of brands on shopbop vying for my attention, but certain consistently great lines make it a little easier. Enter Robert Rodriguez, who creates sexy yet sophisticated looks with perfect tailoring and fit. It’s no wonder that A-listers like Angelina Jolie, Scarlett Johansson, and Nicole Kidman have sported his finely crafted confections.

I’m partial to the cinched waist of the Appliqué Sheath Dress (pictured) and the Old Hollywood silhouette of the Seamed Dress. When I want something unexpected, the sexy open back of the Backless Dress (pictured) and the Diamond Back Dress are beautiful options. The Origami Dress (pictured), with its folding, draping, and delicate print, certainly lives up to its name. The best thing about these fancy but not-too-formal frocks? I can feel red carpet-ready even if I’m drinking boxed wine at my BFF’s holiday party.

Tell us: What little line do you love?

--Tonya

Monday, December 15th 2008

Party Time


My holiday party season officially started Saturday with an annual Grinch party. (The theme is fairly arbitrary; my friends and I use it as an excuse to get together before the holiday hullaballoo begins.) Though that fête was a casual affair, the remaining soirees on my list will demand a little more sartorial reflection. And, hoping to keep getting dressed off the list of seasonal stresses, I set out to find a frock that could carry me from the work party through the family get-together and right into the New Year’s Eve bash.

The winner? Madison Marcus’s all-events appropriate Indulgence Dress. With some killer shoes (I started drooling over these Sergio Rossi python sandals the moment they hit my desk) and a rock-star clutch (Jill Stuart’s fringed one is brilliant), it’s the perfect little fashion-forward piece. Add some eye-catching earrings and layers of bracelets (all from Citrine by the Stones), and the look is shopbop holiday party and New Year’s Eve ready. For the family affair, I’ll make the look a touch more modest by swapping out the shoes for a conservative pair of pumps and adding an elegant little cardigan.

Tell me, ladies, what look will carry you through the holiday party season?

--Amie

Friday, December 12th 2008

Bracing Beauties


The day I realized my cell phone was the perfect timekeeper was the day I ditched my watch, and I’ve been a bracelet junkie ever since. Cuffs, bangles, chains, jellies—I love them all, which is precisely why I can’t get enough of the offerings from Bop Bijoux. Sure, I may be a little partial to the line since it’s one of shopbop’s very own (like the awesomely comfy and chic Bop Basics), but I do believe I’d adore the braided leather and ombré ribbon wrap bracelets, the simple cord bracelet with its whimsical gold bead, and the silver bangles with their so-sweet star charm (that last one’s on sale, so shop fast!) no matter who made them. They’ve got a timelessly pretty appeal, and I know they’ll find a very lovely home in my jewelry box’s bracelet drawer.

--Amie

Thursday, December 11th 2008

swimming in style

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My sister is road tripping to Orlando over the holidays, but I’m headed in the opposite direction: snowbound Montreal. She’ll be enjoying the sun, while I’ll be taking shelter in bistros and trying to remember my French lessons from college. But this hasn’t stopped me from admiring all the swimwear that’s been coming across my desk, especially two swimwear lines that are new to shopbop.

Anna & Boy, founded by two former editors of Vogue Australia, is influenced by old surf films and the laid-back sensibility of those lucky denizens of Down Under. Eye-popping prints are made even more whimsical with little gold peach charms on each suit. The Bloom Pink Bandeau Bikini (pictured) has a bold, artsy print, and the ultra-feminine Bloom Lilac Frill Bikini is equally lovely. For the flirty beach bum, the Tie Dye Frill Bikini and the Lime Splice Bikini are spot-on.

Red Carter, influenced by the sand and surf of SoCal and the Art Deco architecture of Miami, is known for charming and unique suits. The Monaco Bandeau Bikini (pictured) is a nautical-inspired number that’s perfect even if your idea of resort is lounging next to a hotel pool somewhere in the depths of the Midwest. The Floating Poppies Bikini is bright, bold, and fun, and the Siegfried and Roy Bikini is fierce with a white tiger print and gold accents.

--Tonya

Tuesday, December 9th 2008

Style, The 10 Pin Way

Bowling isn’t the most stylish of sports. I remember watching it on Saturday afternoons with my dad, and it was decidedly overrun with too-tight pants, resin-coated fingerless gloves, and two-tone shoes. Doesn’t really scream sexy. But after a series of events involving a “concert” in a church basement (trickery may have got us there, but the quirky atmosphere and free wine made us stay) and a stop at a less-than-trendy martini bar (our mixologist went by the name of “Lefko,” and I’m pretty sure she was wearing sweatpants), I found myself in a bowling alley in Chicago’s Irving Park Saturday night. Sounds ridiculous, and it was, but it was one of those bizarrely random nights that’s all sorts of fantastic.

My wardrobe choice for the evening was not prepared for the range of activities—I was wearing a dress and boots. Here’s what I would have worn had I known the night would end with game of 10 pin:

It may be cliché to wear a tee to go bowling, but I like to think this unique Helmut Lang one is cool enough to shatter that notion.

Chicago is coooold this time of year, so a short-sleeve tee doesn’t cut it on its own. This jacket has warm and cool all wrapped up.

A dress isn’t exactly conducive to the repetitive bending motion that the lanes require, so given a repeat, I’d match my tee and jacket with a pair casual-meets-nighttime-chic jeans.

As for footwear? The bowling alley had that covered, naturally.

--Amie

Monday, December 8th 2008

resort!

The Latest by Kate, Fashion Director

It’s chilly in New York this week and snow is in the forecast. I hate being cold and therefore loathe this time of year. I’m a summertime girl through and through. Don’t get me wrong, I love fall fashion—the layering, cool beanie hats, plaid flannel shirts—but when resort hits the website it feels like a breath of fresh air. I can’t help but think about the West Coast, particularly sunny California. During my last buying trip to L.A., I pulled over on the way to the airport and sat on some rocks overlooking the ocean to soak up as much sun as I possibly could before heading back to N.Y.C. and its wintery weather (see pic!). I thought about all the girls out there who were still wearing rompers and sandals...luckkkkyyyy! Thank god for fashion and all the new resort styles to lift my spirits.

Some of my favs include:

The print is phenomenal! It looks like a combination of popping bubbles and broken glass. And there’s this amazing train in the back, which is so girly in comparison to the edgy print. Alexander Wang Bubble Print Romper

Finally, a sexy cardigan! I love this style. Vena Cava Lucifer Cardigan

This makes me particularly happy about my upcoming trip to Florida. Melissa Odabash Mustique Cover-Up

Join me in a toast to resort!

Monday, December 8th 2008

Stretchin’ It to the Max

Style Notes by Morgan, Senior Stylist

As many of you may have already done, I recently decided I need to reassess my personal shopping strategy, or more accurately, my shopbop Wishlist. I want to get a few key items that will take my current closet to a whole new level this season, and get more bang for the buck! I've updated it for those friends who know my birthday is coming up, but it’s also a great place to keep track of things I’m saving for. That way I can see what goes together and what doesn’t—my online dressing room, if you will.

All of this really got me thinking: What can I do to stretch my current wardrobe to the max? Here’s what I came up with for a few things that are already in my closet.

1. I've got a ton of chunky platform sandals. I can totally make them wearable during colder days by adding some tights. (I’m loving the Falke thigh-highs and socks. They create an instant fall/winter shoe!)

2. I just bought this Beckerman jacket, and I totally wear it as a dress as well as a jacket. IT’S AMAZING! I've already worn it with tights and flat boots, and socks and my platform sandals. It’s like two pieces in one. (DKNY has another jacket that I can wear as a dress too, and I’m dying to get it!)

3. A black bag—it goes with everything! Mine’s by Foley + Corinna, and it’s got enough room that I can stuff it for day, or fold it over and make an oversized clutch out of it for night. Win win!

4. Skirts and tanks are so versatile—you can make a dress out of them! Just add a belt to this and this, and you have a perfect party outfit. And since they’re separates, you can keep mixing and matching—the possibilities are endless. It’s so much more than just one outfit.

5. And finally a dress I can wear several ways, like this one from Elizabeth and James. It’s got at least three parties in it!

Monday, December 8th 2008

Get to Know Pencey

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What would happen if you cleared out the closet of a Lower East Side girl with blueblood breeding? Methinks you’d get a collection that looks a lot like Pencey. A thoroughly inspired mash-up of prep-school cool (think riffs on uniform blazers, riding pants, and debutante-worthy party frocks) and downtown femme fatale (see lace leggings, faux fur, fringe, and punk rock plaids, with a little lamé thrown in for good measure), Pencey captures the eclectic aesthetic that defines cool-girl style. The only thing that’s missing from the picture? A faded hand stamp from a show at Pianos.

Check out the new Pencey lookbook here.

--Maureen

Monday, December 8th 2008

style it: cozy boots

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I picked up a pair of black suede cozy boots this week, and the next morning, as I stood in a snowbank, scraping ice off my windshield in well-below-freezing temps, I knew that it was the smartest purchase I’d made in a long time. The only problem? How to style the boots so they’ll look just as great indoors as out. (Hopefully so great I’ll stop wishing I lived in warmer climes.)

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Grey jeans have a little edge over the usual blue, and they’ll look spectacular tucked into black boots. Rich & Skinny – Sleek Jean

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I love a warm, chunky sweater that’s still open enough to show off my cute top underneath. MK2K – Cable Knit Shrug

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Select Bop Basic styles are 3 for $50 through December, even more incentive to layer this long sleeve tee under the shrug for extra insulation. Bop Basics – Long Sleeve V Neck

One final accessory? Waterproofing spray.

That’s how I’ll style my cozy boots. What about you?

--Tonya

Monday, December 8th 2008

A Time for Giving


With the holidays fast approaching, my to-buy-for list is long, but my gift-ideas list is in a sad, sorry state. I like to think myself a pretty savvy gift giver, so I’m feeling a little pressure to get my giftees something unique and totally right for them.

My best gal pal is such a sucker for a cool graphic tee, and when we were browsing the Marc by Marc store in Chicago last weekend, she said she liked his feather-print top. Subtle hint to me? I hope so because it’s getting wrapped up. My sister-in-law is a total Sephora junkie, so I’ll tuck a gift card to the beauty store into a deco-chic LeSportsac cosmetic case. My soon-to-be sister-in-law is all about shine, so for her, I’m thinking jewelry. The Gorjana petal necklace and matching earrings will be perfect. And for my mom, I’m going with a so-cozy cardigan by Rag & Bone. She’s always cold so it’ll appeal to her practical nature. And it’s perfectly luxe, which will make her feel pampered every time she puts it on.

With all this gift giving, I think I deserve a little something too. My gift to me? A TDM Design scarf I’ve had my eye on for weeks.

That’s my list. Need to find the perfect little something for the ladies on yours? Check out our Gifts Under $150 for fabulous, affordable ideas.

--Amie

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