Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Minimalist Chic

Another reason I love minimalism? 
My collages are so much easier to craft! 

While the fewer pieces in my collages have been more convenient, let's get to the fashion aspect of minimalism. As I mentioned in the previous post, minimalism is all about utilizing neutrals - whether you are mixing them or using all one color. So wear gray on gray! I like pairing this charcoal belted dress with a tweedy, paler gray boyfriend coat. I actually could not love this coat more. The shape is so on trend and the price is right. Wear nude pumps, and carry this oversize clutch to finish off the look.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Minimalist Chic

Minimalism is the perfect trend for me. It is all about creating a pared-down, chic look by combining luxurious, classic pieces with pure simplicity, which fits very neatly into my current aesthetic. Above is one way to achieve the minimalist look. Minimalism is all about neutrals, think black, white, gray and camel - fall's "it" color. Mix and match these neutrals for different outfits. Try a white button down blouse, and a camel skirt. Keep the accessories simple - like a winter white cashmere sweater, black ribbed tights, peep-toe booties, and an ostrich leather (or faux) bag.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Casual Fridays

As we all have heard, army jackets are on trend this season - and they make for a perfect casual look. Olive looks great with bright orange, so for fall, pair your army jacket with a bright orange sweater. This will make the the utilitarian trend much more fun and feminine. Wear dark wash skinny jeans and taupe suede boots to complete the look. Finally, carry a big black tote bag that can hold everything you may need! 

Dear, Santa

Yep, that's my desk! Not. I wish. 

I think I am constrained by the fact that I live in a college dorm and my desk is made of formica. I try to brighten up the space, however, with a ceramic horse head which I keep my pencils, pens, and scissors in, a shallow, white ceramic dish to keep odds and ends like bobby pins, and I've covered the provided bulletin board with photos, postcards, and my favorite quotations and fortune cookie fortunes. And currently I have a pop-up Christmas tree from MoMA by Robert Sabuda to celebrate the season.

So in my journey to keep my desk bright and lovely, I have included these products on my Christmas list:

1. Jonathan Adler Aztec Diamond Laptop Case: Currently, my laptop case is black and boring (and it has some holes in it from where my cat chewed it in high school) so I love this one from Jonathan Adler.

2. Banderole Pom Pom Pencil Set: These pencils with streamers coming off the end are the cutest things I have ever seen. I use pens more than pencils usually, but these just may convert me.

3. Lilly Pulitzer White Zin iPhone 3 Case: I am always torn as to whether or not I want a cute print or a plain color for my iPhone case, and I've alternated between the two. I currently have a solid red one, but this big bright flower print is definitely going to mean it's time to switch!

4. Kate Spade Dot Cosmetic Case: I use cosmetic cases as pencil cases, and these ones from Kate Spade are the perfect size for me as I put pencils, pens, highlighters, chapstick, lip gloss, and Orbit gum in my case. They are also coated in plastic so they take the wear and tear of being thrown around in my school bag like pros.

5. Kate Spade 2011 Desk Calendar: It's kind of become tradition that next year's Kate Spade desk calendar is in my stocking. I eternally look forward to which design approach they will take each year and this year it looks no different - it will be adorable as always.

6. Leave Your Mark Monogram Sticky Notes: Whenever something I need to do pops into my head I have to write it down immediately. I always have Post-It notes on my desk - so I always have something to write my to-dos down on. I then put up the note on my mirror so I remind myself of it as I do my make-up in the morning. Currently I just use neon Post-Its, but I would love to use these far cuter monogram ones.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Recipe for Thanksgiving Dressing

Now this is what my Thanksgiving will look like. Casual, relaxed, with my dearest family. Actually, my Thanksgiving will be a little more harried than this I am sure. I will probably be wearing an apron when our guests arrive - hopefully it will be a cute one from Anthropologie. But underneath the apron I plan to have on an outfit just like this:

I love this deep yellow sweater with red velvet flats - the perfect fall combination inspired by the changing leaves. Wear this oversized sweater over a crisp white oxford (clearly a staple in my closet) and with skinny cropped black pants. Mix this classic casual look with a tribal-inspired black beaded necklace. This is the perfect outfit for an at home Thanksgiving. Now go and enjoy your holiday everyone! Have a wonderful day tomorrow. 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Recipe for Thanksgiving Dressing

The eternal question. What do you wear to meet the parents? And if you've already met them, what do you wear for the first holiday spent with the family? For holidays with your boyfriend's parents, it is important (and tricky) 
to find the balance between over-dressed and under-dressed. And you also don't want to look like you're going in for an interview. So here is an outfit that strikes the perfect balance.

Like I've said, Thanksgiving is a great time to embrace fall colors, or in this case, luxe fall fabrics - like velvet. To find that happy medium between looking nice without looking too formal, I would wear wide leg black pants, a traditional crisp white oxford, and a tuxedo style velvet blazer. Add a mixed material - like chain and pearl - oversized necklace. And finally, wear a flat with a bit of a wedge, like these that hit on the fall leopard trend. A bit of a heel always makes us stand up better and gives our legs better shape, but keep it low and keep it a wedge - you never know when your boyfriend's mom might ask for some help in the kitchen! 

Monday, November 22, 2010

Recipe for Thanksgiving Dressing

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I guess I cheat a little by lumping it in with Christmas - but the Thanksgiving/Christmas season is my favorite (yeah that is cheating...). I love to entertain others, and so I love hosting those that come over to Thanksgiving. I cook everything for the Thanksgiving dinner - which includes brining the turkey for nine hours, making two types of pie, appetizers, vegetables, and of course - stuffing. And as we all know - Thanksgiving is this week! Oh, what to wear on Thanksgiving?

In the place of my weekly trend, this week on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday I am going to show three different Thanksgiving outfits. One for a formal Thanksgiving, one for a Thanksgiving with your significant-other's family, and one outfit for a casual thanksgiving. Today, we are looking at an excellent formal outfit.

Thanksgiving is the perfect place to embrace deep fall colors. For the formal look - I like dark eggplant. This simple gathered sheath dress is a perfect base for accessories to add some glamor. If you'd like to be on the more conservative end, wear a black cardigan over the dress belted with this stretch jewel belt and chevron patterned tights. If you want to show a little more skin, pick one or the other, or leave off both! It all depends on what you're comfortable with for your occasion. Even if you ditch the sweater, keep the jeweled belt to give the dress more shape. Wear a dramatic bib necklace to spice up this simple dress, and round-toe, suede black pumps to complete the look in a classy way. And you're ready for a formal Thanksgiving dinner. Eat up!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Casual Fridays

I could not love a classic khaki trench coat more. It looks great with basically everything. Put it on over a dress at night for some warmth, or over jeans for a casual day look - which is what I'll focus on today. Casual looks are all about taking basics and making them look chic in simple ways. So here, just take a striped shirt, light wash skinny jeans, and camel ballet flats as your base. Give the look polish and sophistication with a trench coat and quilted black bag. Add some square frame sunglasses for bright fall days. Without the trench coat, the look is very pedestrian, but add the coat and you've got a classic and timeless casual look.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Dear, Santa

I love America. But really, I do. I love learning about it - one of my favorite books is State by State: A Panoramic Portrait of America - and I am an American Studies major here at college. One of the best gifts I have received is the original artwork from the inside cover of State by State. I love my home state and city - San Francisco, California. I brag about it as much as possible (way to go Giants) as I truly believe it is the best state in the Union. I plan to partake in the 2010 Big Eat San Francisco: 100 Things to Try Before You Die and I hope to be able to do The Big To-Do San Francisco: 250 Things To Do Before You Die. So this love of America notably bleeds into how I dress. I love Americana classic, and so this Christmas some of my gifts certainly channel that love.

I love this striped dress with its long sleeves pushed up - such effortless cool. I would definitely wear the dress with these nude strappy wedges. A simple stone pendant or a brightly colored chain link necklace over a striped tee, jeans, and flats is my view of a perfect outfit. I also love those nude strappy wedges with a red mini and a black and white striped boxy tee with a black blazer thrown on. I will wear all these pieces as separates from fall to summer and back again. Classic, timeless, American.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Maxi-mize Your Style

This is my favorite way to rock a maxi skirt. Classic and effortlessly preppy. I would wear this dark brown maxi skirt with a gorgeous silk blouse tucked in. To mix materials I would pair the flowy silk blouse with a thick leather belt. Over the blouse, wear a menswear tailored gray blazer, and on your feet a pair of brown leather oxfords to finish off the look. This adds up to a flawless look combining classic fashion with up to date trends. 

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Maxi-mize Your Style

A look not for the faint of heart. Take a maxi skirt to a glamorous level in winter white. Play with proportion by wearing a long sweater in a complimenting neutral like nude or cream. Keep the shoes easy, like these white cut-out flats. Take it to the next level by wearing a faux-fur coat, one of the seasons top trends. It will take the maxi skirt trend into evening wear. 

Monday, November 15, 2010

Maxi-mize Your Style

All over fall runways, maxi skirts were making an appearance. Above we see a lovely printed maxi skirt at Tibi, a luxe white skirt at Reed Krakoff, a long thick sweater over a preppy, yet ethereal camel skirt at Richard Chai, and an all gray ensemble at Michael Kors. While these are definitely runway looks, there is a way to integrate maxi skirts into your day to day look. They add unexpected glamor to basic pieces. So here is the first installment of three ways to wear maxi skirts!

Pair a maxi skirt with simple separates to keep it chic - not over the top. A white tee shirt tucked in with a chain link belt, a buttery leather jacket, a black and silver bib necklace and black booties give this look polish while maintaining some edginess.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Casual Fridays

A friend of mine made the point that she feels like she knows how to dress professionally for when she goes to work everyday, and formally for nice events, and then at the opposite end of the spectrum she feels comfortable in yoga pants and a sweatshirt. She feels as if she doesn't know how to look good while dressing "casually." Casual dressing just doesn't come naturally to her. Since most people work nine-to-five jobs, they wear professional dress Monday through Friday, so casual clothes are more associated with weekend dressing. Therefore, inspired by my good friend, I am going to start the Casual Friday series. Every Friday I will post a cute way to look casual, just in time for the weekend! Here is the first installment...

A way to look casual and cute is instead of wearing just an old tee shirt, get something that has a little something extra. Don't make the material fancy, like silk, but get something with ruffles, a fun print like on-trend leopard, or just like this one: an asymmetrical hem and long sleeves. I can't recommend scarves more highly - they are a great way to add some layering, a print, or a pop of color to an outfit. If you wear a top in a print, pick a solid scarf, and vice versa. So pair this trapeze top with distressed skinny jeans, a printed eternity scarf, flats or Rainbows, aviators, and a quilted chain bag. Casual success!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Dear, Santa

My birthday is November 30th. Therefore, this is about the time I make my birthday list, and since I have presents on the mind, I blow right through my birthday and work on my Christmas list as well.

Christmas is absolutely my favorite time of year. I have to fight the urge to listen to Christmas music before Thanksgiving, and the minute December 1st rolls around I set my radio to the two local stations that play nonstop Christmas music. The day after Thanksgiving we buy our tree, and my father and I always put the lights on. Now this is not an average light decorating that my father and I take on. I believe there are about 1,000 bulbs on the tree once we get done - yes, we wrap the trunk twice and each branch individually with light. We fill our home with holiday candles, ornaments and lights. I can't wait.

I will be blogging my Christmas list in several segments, and explaining how I plan to wear the things I hope that Santa will bring me. Perhaps you will add some things to your list too!

Not only do I enjoy stalking the fashion shows, celebrities' and models' styles, and ten or so shopping websites I look at on a day-to-day basis, but I love to read about fashion. Specifically about personal style. 

Personal style is such an interesting term. It means you have style, but it is somehow individualized. I think most of us girls are in the search for our perfect personal style. Mine has evolved many times over the years. In high school, I was your classic Blair Waldorf prepster, but I soon found that too stuffy and I now define my style as mainly classic Americana with a touch of feminine and edginess thrown in when the right trend comes along - picture more of a Lauren Conrad or Rachel Bilson. I would spend days pouring over these books, and return to them over and over: The Ellements of Style, Harper's Bazaar Fashion: Your Guide to Personal Style, and Street View: The New Nylon Guide Book of Global Style, which is why these personal style books top my Christmas list.

One of the books is not about personal style: the one in the top left, 100 Years of Fashion Illustration. It looks so beautiful I want to rip all the pages out for my inspiration board. The book not only features gorgeous illustrations, but also plenty of fashion history and suggestions for further reading.

Are you reading Santa?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

...Who's the Fair Isle of Them All? Part 3

Finally, layer up your Fair Isle a la Rag and Bone. Wear a Fair Isle coat and underneath wear a tank, sweater, and scarf over skinny jeans. It is important here to wear skinny jeans as you are bulking up the top half and you don't want to look like a linebacker. Finish it off with a leather bag that is a tonal match to the neutrals of the outfit and on trend suede booties.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

...Who's the Fair Isle of Them All? Part 2

A thick Fair Isle scarf takes on rustic appeal when worn with a plaid tunic (Scottish motifs unite!) and a shearling aviator jacket. On the bottom half wear jeggings - which I often don't find acceptable, but if you wear a tunic, okay - and on trend riding boots.

Monday, November 8, 2010

...Who's the Fair Isle of Them All? Part 1

A friend just told me a story of how her mom had thirteen Fair Isle sweaters in college, until she walked into her dorm to find her roommate counting them out loud to all her friends. Well, my friend's mom can certainly be seen as vindicated this season. Fair Isle showed up on runways in many different forms. From the way D&G hit you in the face with it on some looks, to the way that Rag and Bone hid a Fair Isle sweater under piles of downtown-chic layers, or the way that Marc Jacobs paired an oversized Fair Isle sweater with a ladylike skirt; Fair Isle is an undeniable trend this fall. Not only is it prevalent on the runway, but it is easy to find and pretty easy to find inexpensively! So here are plenty of ways to wear it.

Make Fair Isle feminine by using a wide belt to cinch the waist of an oversize Fair Isle sweater or poncho. Keep the bottom half streamlined by wearing a figure-hugging pencil skirt and black platform pumps. And finish the look off with an oversize clutch with some luxury to it, like this sequin one.


Thursday, November 4, 2010

Style to Steal: Charlotte Di Calypso

My goodness I have been bad about posting haven't I? College just does that to you I think. Between the thirty-five page portfolio I have due next week and meetings until 10pm at night, my blog is often what I let slip. So anyway, I apologize for my hiatus, but I am making a commitment to myself to post at least twice a week. So to get restarted here, I will do another Style to Steal post as I have been having a lot of fun with these. They allow me to learn about new and different models, and I have become inspired by their clothing choices to update my own wardrobe. I keep a running list of things I want to buy, and Charlotte di Calypso makes me want some skinny black jeans to pair with my preppy basics. Also, don't you just want to be friends with her? How adorable is she? Well, if I can't meet her, might as well try to channel her style! So here's how you can recreate Charlotte's classic-with-an-edge look.