Wednesday, March 31st 2010

The Ultimate Transition Piece: The Lightweight Scarf

Sure, the temperature continues to climb to summer-like levels, but it’s spring, and in the north that means warm (sometimes hot) afternoons are bookended by cold mornings and evenings. It’s the time of year when layers of clothing are gradually peeled off, only to be piled back on again as the day closes—a peculiar dance performed by those who understand and appreciate that the weather’s manic state means the summer months are almost here.

Most mornings I leave my house in a light cardigan or jacket and a scarf—always a scarf. Possessing transformative powers both practical and stylish, scarves are the ultimate transition piece. When the temperature is low enough to be chilly but too high to merit a heavy coat, a scarf can be the difference between comfort and cold, and when an outfit feels a little boring, a brightly colored scarf wrapped just so elevates it in an instant.

Try pairing the A Peace Treaty scarf pictured with a Splendid tee, skinny jeans, and Jeffrey Campbell flats. Or dabble in the mixed prints trend and match a print Bop Basics scarf with a complementary print dress and a leather jacket.


Wednesday, March 31st 2010

First Fashion: Barely There

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The black leather shoes, jackets, and bags in my closet are looking a little heavy now that the sun is here to stay. It’s time to put them aside and find their warm-weather counterparts in spring’s favorite neutral.

(1) Whites and brights, solids and patterns–everything I’ll be wearing this spring will be perfectly complemented by nude shoes. Camilla Skovgaard’s avant-garde artistry further ensures I’ll never take them off. Camilla Skovgaard – Collar High Heel Sandals

(2) Don’t let the color (or the lightweight cotton) fool you. With its wrinkles and studs, this biker jacket is just as edgy as any black leather version. Gryphon – The Studded Biker Jacket

(3) This cute straw clutch is making me forget about leather altogether. Felix Rey’s signature whimsy is a great companion for a casual gathering. Felix Rey – My Heart Is Yours Basket Clutch


Tuesday, March 30th 2010

Seaside Soiree: What to Wear to a Beach Wedding

My best friend just announced her destination wedding details: an ocean-side ceremony on the sands of Smathers Beach, Key West. This news immediately got me tracking down directions to Hemingway’s house, cyber-scoping the nightlife on Duval Street, and waxing southernmost-chic, sartorially speaking. My look for her big day has to be far breezier than what I’d wear to fête black-tie nuptials, but I still want beautiful, not beach bum.

I began my search by brainstorming designers with an exotic island aesthetic: the tropical prints from Tibi, the Miami-in-the-’60s vibe of Karina Grimaldi rompers, and the nomad-chic elegance of Mara Hoffman maxi dresses all made their way into My Hearts. A trip through our bright dresses boutique yielded contenders from Shoshanna and Diane von Furstenberg, while the vividly accessorized outfits on the Rebecca Taylor and Nanette Lepore spring runways sparked styling inspiration for my entire trip.

Thus far, I’ve narrowed it down to the four numbers pictured. Whichever frock I choose, I’ll take a cue from Senior Stylist Morgan and temper the high-voltage hue with of-the-moment nude sandals, then dance ’til dawn.


Tuesday, March 30th 2010

First Fashion: Summer Dressing

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This week promises to hit summer-like temperatures, and I’m using the warm weather as an excuse to take my summer wardrobe out for a spin. Today in What’s New, I found an ensemble that may just convince Mother Nature to keep the days sunny right through November.

(1) I’m in the middle of a love affair with prints, and this one from Mara Hoffman fits all my criteria: fun, a little subdued, and flattering. Mara Hoffman - Cowl Sleeve Drape Dress

(2) The best pairing for an airy summer dress? No-nonsense yet chic flat sandals. This pair from L.A.M.B. will be in heavy rotation this summer. L.A.M.B. - Dagan Stud Flat Sandals

(3) Throw on a hands-free messenger bag and some oversized sunnies, and I’ve got an effortless summer-in-the-city look. Botkier - Bowie Cross Body Camera Bag


Monday, March 29th 2010

Beyond the Blue: Unique Ways to Wear Denim

We’ve become accustomed to seeing denim in every imaginable jean silhouette and shade of blue, but there’s so much more to this versatile fabric. A sampling of the season’s best denim looks:

Denim Jackets: The Vogue cover of Jessica Biel sporting a denim jacket over a denim vest split people into two camps: those who loved the look, and those who didn’t. I fell firmly in the latter. But with printed and patterned denim jackets, you can wear this style with your favorite skinnies without veering into “Canadian Tuxedo” territory. A print Marc by Marc Jacobs jacket (pictured) is an easy introduction to the tribal trend, while the details on a McQ jacket (pictured) show denim done with an avant-garde twist. Other designers transform this casual fabric with their signature polish: Derek Lam’s version takes its cues from a tailored trench, and Rebecca Taylor’s polka dots are perfect over a ladylike floral frock.

Denim Dresses: All-over denim is less intimidating after a look at this season’s denim dresses. A denim-and-jersey Helmut Lang dress rivals the sexiest LBD, while a body-con Rag & Bone dress, with its unexpected open back, proves that this style is all grown up and ready for a night out.

Denim Bags: Like the look of denim but love the feel of leather? Enter the denim-leather bag. As versatile as a pair of jeans, this go-with-everything style is a great argument for giving your black handbag a break. (I especially love cool-girl favorites like the Alexander Wang Donna Hobo and the BE & D Garbo Tote in denim leather.)


Monday, March 29th 2010

First Fashion: Chic Cargo

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Like my fellow writer Tonya recently posted, I also suffer from dress pants phobia. The last time I wore a pant other than skinny jeans or leggings was my Shopbop job interview! Traditional dress pants always seemed too real estate agent for this creative writer’s sensibility. But then I realized this season’s soft pants are a superb way to display a killer pair of kicks. Insouciantly cuffed and rendered in luxe fabrications, they’re a relaxed counterpoint to fierce footwear—a look that’s chic for day or night.

(1) The pair I’ve been coveting has finally hit What’s New. Fatigue green never looked so fabulous. Joie - Jester Silk Cargo Pants

(2) How to get away with predatory for day? Pair these take-no-prisoners sandals with the aforementioned Joie pants and a Victorialand button-down shirt. Camilla Skovgaard – Drop Point Sandals

(3) I’ll crib Kate’s Paris Fashion Week style and top off my look with this straw fedora, layered necklaces, and a pair of Alexander Wang sunglasses. Bop Basics - Open Weave Fedora with Canvas Trim


Friday, March 26th 2010

Lace Looks for People Who Don’t Like Lace

Let’s talk lace. Love it or loathe it? If you’re into it, you already know this is your season—the boudoir trend is chockablock with frilly lingerie looks. But if you’re in the “no thanks” camp, like me? Spring offers up some pretty compelling (no pun intended) reasons to reconsider your stance.

Turns out lace can play it cool. I credit the pic above from our Spring 2010 Trends Report for this fashion eureka moment. But as you can see, inspired, go-way-beyond-what’s-expected styling is key. In keeping with the opposites attract technique shown, I’d pair a lace blouse or blazer (the one above is from newcomer Of Two Minds clothing) with my J Brand cargo pants or the Monrow sweatpants I’ve had in heavy rotation since November.

The overall effect is kind of like you threw a vintage bed jacket over your lazing-around-the-house pants to run out to the deli on a Sunday morning, but heightened, elevated. A perfect example of the look an astute fashion friend has christened “crazy-lady cool.”

Viva la lace!


Friday, March 26th 2010

First Fashion: A Look on the Light Side

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Though spring has sprung, I’m still wearing long sleeves, the occasional heavy sweater, and way too much black. But today in What’s New, these three lighter-than-air pieces have me looking forward to the day when I can leave my apartment in nothing more than weightless ensembles and sun-kissed skin.

(1) My lazy summer days will be an ode to this top, cutoff shorts, and flat sandals. Joie – Delano Top

(2) Cutouts and a springy shade make classic pumps feel less heavy. A casual-sexy slim tank and skinny jeans will take them from day to night. ROSEGOLD – Marni Laser Cut Heels

(3) I won’t wait around hoping this makes it to the Juicy Couture sale–I want to wear it now. I’ll layer on a cardigan and toughen up the lightweight linen and lace with Frye boots until flip-flop weather is in full swing. Juicy Couture – Linen Dress with Lace


Thursday, March 25th 2010

Studio Style: Casual with an Edge

This month in Studio Style we picked stylist Bobbie’s fashionable brain. What did we learn? Edgy comfort isn’t an oxymoron; if you can still see your fingers through your rings, you may need to stack on a few more; and backpack purses are making a comeback!

Suzanne: You look appropriately edgy yet really comfy. What’s the key to pulling this off?

Bobbie: I think the key is finding a look you’re comfortable in and sticking with it. I take a few edgier pieces I love, like my combat boots and knuckle rings, and wear them with everything. This gives a not-trying-too-hard edge.

S: I like the smattering of fashion glossies across your desk. Which magazines are your inspiration favorites?

B: Actually, I usually go online for my inspiration. I love checking out all the runway shows and building my looks straight from the source. Otherwise, I just hit the town and do some serious people watching.

S: When it comes to accessories are you a “take one off before you leave the house” or a “more is more” kind of girl?
B: I’m obsessed with rings right now. I stack on as many as I can find and wear them with everything, so I guess more is more!

S: What handbag are you currently carrying?

B: An Alexander Wang backpack! I love it! I can actually wear it while I’m tooling around town on my cruiser, feeling comfortable and looking cute.

Bobbie wears:
ALC cardigan
* Jersey maxi dress
* Citrine by the Stones, Jules Smith, and Made Her Think rings
* Jeffrey Campbell boots
* Alexander Wang backpack


Thursday, March 25th 2010

First Fashion: Soft Slouch, Chic Comfort

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For the last three weeks, I’ve been spending most nights after work hunched over my home computer working on a little personal side project: a video for my grandmother’s ninetieth birthday. It’s certainly a worthy effort, but style-wise, the poor posture side effect has me craving comfort more than chic. Today in What's New, I’ve managed to find both.

(1) When it comes to classic chic, Vince clothing is always my go-to. This top has the look of a favorite sweatshirt in airy burnout jersey. Vince - Raglan Sleeve Burnout Sweatshirt Tee

(2) I can’t get enough of nautical stripes this spring, and this effortless slouchy top is a fresh take on the trend. Myne - Evan Top

(3) The latest offering from Joie clothing, Soft Joie has all the basics a wardrobe needs with the details Joie fans love. I foresee many summer days spent in this trapeze tank and denim cutoffs. Soft Joie - Haley Tank


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