June 29, 2009

CFDA Design Editions at Gap

Vena Cava Printed Khaki Dress

Vena Cava Khaki Zip Dress

We love these two printed khaki dresses from Gap's CFDA Design Editions. They have very simple shapes, but the dark tribal design gives them a bit of drama. The sleeveless zip-front version would be right for you if you want an edgy feel, but if you're looking for something a little more modest but fashionable, choose the short-sleeved one.

$88 at Gap (each)

How to Wear a Sweater Dress

How can I wear a sweater dress without looking old-fashioned? And in the spring or summer?

It's not always easy to wear a sweater dress without looking frumpy, so here's a fun way to incorporate it into your outfit during the spring and summer:

First, choose the right dress. Try a fun patterned one for a fresh, unique look (like the one to the left). Next, cinch the waist with a not-too-skinny, not-too-chunky belt in a neutral color (we recommend a brown or off-white), because most sweater dresses don't have a waistband or accentuated waist. Last, throw on a bright trench coat (single-breasted, so that it can show off your dress when unbuttoned), with 1/2 or 3/4 sleeves so that it has a light, summery feel. Tulle has gotten this look just right.

Advice: The collar of the coat shouldn't be too busy, or your whole outfit will appear as too much-- the pattern on the dress is enough. We would choose a round collar to keep it simple. Also, try to choose a coat in a complementary color. Example: yellow with pink or purple, teal/blue with an orange or coral, and anything with white and beige. Remember to make sure the dress and coat are about the same length, so that the ensemble stays clean and polished.

Accessories: There really isn't a need for accessories with an outfit like this. But if you have to have something, choose rings or bracelets/bangles (like the model in the photo above). Don't wear a necklace; it will make the top too busy.

Scallop Knit Sweater Dress SALE $43.20 at Tulle
Canvas Trench SALE $37.20 at Tulle

(Photo Courtesy: Tulle)

June 27, 2009

A Must-Have: The Boyfriend Blazer

You don't have to search through your hubby's closet anymore; menswear-inspired jackets for women are a huge trend now, with their clean, tailored silhouettes and multi-functional style.
A great way to wear them? Layer yours over a patterned or ruffled blouse, with fitted jeans, a skinny belt, and maybe a few simple accessories for a chic (completely work-appropriate) look.

Long Boyfriend Jacket $79.50 at Express

Aqua Boyfriend Blazer w/ Striped Lining $88.00 at Bloomingdale's

Wool Boyfriend Blazer OUT OF STOCK $350.00 at J Crew

How to Choose Flattering Pants

Here are some features to look for when shopping for figure-flattering pants:
  • A slight flare at the bottom. This style has been a best seller since as long as we can remember for a good reason-- they instantly make hips look smaller.
  • Make sure there is just a bit of stretch; they should stay the same shape and keep the same clean fit as how you bought them.
  • A waistband about one or two inches wide. Avoid those that are narrower because they may draw attention to your belly and create unwanted bulges and "sagging" in the front.
  • Flat-fronts. They create a seamless line across your abdomen, making you look thinner, and actually taller, whereas pleated fronts do the exact opposite.

Another tip (this goes for jeans): To dress up your basic jeans, wear heels, and tuck in your shirt for a slimming effect. Also, they should sit right above the hip, rather than at your upper waist or below the hipbone (super low-rise styles could make you look shorter, and high-waisted pants don't flatter most bodies, making hips look wider than they actually are).

Photo Courtesy: Ben Goldstein Photography

Tullette Waist Tab Short Skirt

Have fun in this cute vintage-inspired skirt, featuring two decorative button tabs on the sides and accent pleats. Wear it with a fitted top for the most flattering look.

$16 (SALE) at Tulle

June 26, 2009

Flower Beaded Top

This simple short-sleeved shirt features subtle yet beautiful floral bead embellishments. It's feminine, versatile, and affordable. Why not?

$19.99 at Charlotte Russe

Lindsay Crochet Yoke Tank

Add a bit of artsy style to your wardrobe with this crocheted and striped top. Wear this with a pair of (grey) jeans and you're ready for a day of sun-filled fun. Available in Orange or Navy.

$22.50 (SALE) at Delia's

Perfect Weekend Outfits for Women 40+

We understand that women over the age of 40 don't often favor the young trends of skinny jeans, neon tanks, and animal prints, so here are three classic weekend outfits just for you. We've done this by using pieces with clean lines & classic colors, creating looks that are casual yet sophisticated.
Outdoor Dining
Silk Georgette Pleated Top SALE $69.50 at J Crew
Cotton Floral-Print Full Skirt SALE $24.99 at Banana Republic
This neutral combination is perfect for going out to lunch on a warm summer day.
Too dull for you? Brighten it up with a nice pair of sandals, and feminine accessories such as bracelets and a belt (not too chunky) in complementary colors. If you don't like these pieces, pair any sleeveless (silk) blouse with a knee-length skirt in a sophisticated pattern/print.
Backyard BBQ
Piped Blouse SALE $24.99 at Gap
Mid-Rise Boot Cut Jeans SALE $49.99 at Gap
Wear this ensemble and you'll be backyard barbeque-ready. This outfit is perfectly porportioned, with a classic bright-over-dark silhouette.
Out and About

Washed Chambray Perfect Shirt $78.00 at J Crew
Stripe Cotton Popover $68.00 at J Crew
Low-Rise Boot Cut White Jeans SALE $44.99 at Gap

This set is a great twist on a classic weekend outfit. Swap out your old blue jeans for crisp white ones, and wear a shirt with an unusual design or fabric instead of your average button-down. This is suitable for almost any occasion, from strolling along the beach to hanging out at a friend's outdoor party. Choose the striped top for a nautical look, and try the chambray shirt for something a little more put-together. As for accessories, keep it minimal; just add, perhaps, a bold necklace, for a feminine touch.

June 25, 2009

5 Must-Have Shoes For Work

Yes, we know style and comfort don't always go hand in hand-- especially when it comes to footwear-- but here are closet essentials that do not require you to sacrifice looks for functionality.


AK Anne Klein Ivanyi Flats $79.00 at Piperlime

Flats are going to get you everywhere with less pain than any other shoe. This is our favorite type of work shoe because there are so many options to choose from-- loafers, moccasins, ballets-- and they are just so darn comfortable. But they may not be the best choice for women who aren't exactly blessed with height...

Kitten Heels

Layland Slingback Pump SALE $39.99 at Nine West

If you need a little boost in height, it's wise to stay away from flats (although their comfort is hard to resist). Another option is the kitten heel. These will make you a couple of inches taller, and if you're lucky, they'll feel just like your favorite flats.

Wedge Heels

BP. Uptown Wedge Pump $69.95 at Nordstrom

Okay, maybe you're going to need more than just a couple of inches; if you do, try wedge heels. How can these be comfortable? Well, the wedge simply distributes your weight equally over the heel, making it so much easier to wear than stilettos.


Carma OT Air Sling $278.00 at Cole Haan

Want more comfort? Be sure to get cushioned shoes (like these pumps with Nike Air technology), and it's best they have rubberized heels as well as padding on the inside. Cole Haan has been creating gorgeous shoes for men and women since 1928, so he knows what quality shoes are. Sure, these pumps don't have the same feel as real Nike sneakers, but they're as good as heels get.

Spacious Toe Boxes

Gentle Souls It's So Fun Flat $194.95 at Nordstrom

Instead of squeezing your toes into pointed heels with narrow toe boxes, let them breathe in a pair of round or square-toed shoes. Rounded toe boxes are very comfortable and are also very feminine.

Looking for comfortable shoes? Try these brands: Cole Haan Nike Air Technology, Gentle Souls by Kenneth Cole, Naturalizer, Hush Puppies, Clarks, Merrell, Taryn Rose, Sofft, Soft Spots, and Walking Cradles.

What are your favorite work shoes? Tell us in your comments! Feel free to give any feedback.

$50 and Under: Monokinis

The monokini-- a one-piece with cut-outs at the sides-- seems to be summer's biggest swimwear trend. What do you think of them? Would you wear a monokini? Tell us in your comments!
Shape fx Slenderizing & Enhancing Monokini SALE $35.00 at Spiegel
Xhiliration Zig-Zag Monokini $20.98 at Target

Gold Ring One-Piece Monokini SALE $29.99 at Victoria's Secret

Striped Bandeau Monokini $26.99 at Charlotte Russe

Xhiliration Fleet Monokini $29.99 at Target

4 Colors Everyone Looks Good In

Eggplant: Some people may think that this color (top left) is a little too dramatic for them, but it actually matches virtually every skin tone and hair color, because it falls into the middle of the color spectrum, keeping it from being too warm or too cool. I guess you could call it "the perfect purple."
So why does it work? Because it's an extremely versatile color, like black, brown or navy.
True Red (and we mean true): As most of you may already know, red is the color of confidence (top right), and there actually is proof that athletes perform better wearing red, so what's not to love? This one also stays in the middle of the color spectrum.
So why does it work? Because it is in the middle of the color spectrum, right between a cool cherry red and a warm tomato red.
Indian Teal: Colors that are opposite each other on the color wheel are perfect matches, and this deeper version of teal (bottom left)-- which seems to have a dark blue tint-- is the exact opposite of the natural & healthy flush in your face. This plays up your skin tone, whatever it may be.
So why does it work? Because it is the opposite of the light pink in your skin, and it's more versatile than a bright turquoise, so you can wear it all year long.
Mellow Rose: Okay, maybe this color seems a little too girly to some of you, but take a closer look (bottom right). It is not a pastel pink, or a bubble-gum pink; it's somewhere between a light pink and peach-- a neutral. This definitely highlights the natural flush in your cheeks (as mentioned earlier), giving an amazing glow.
So why does it work? Because it is similar to the pale flush in everybody's face, highlighting your greatest features and creating a look of healthy, vibrant skin.
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