Thursday, February 28

The Structured Jacket- A Trend With Benefits

      Up until now, I've  professed my love for cropped blazers and jackets in just about every post I've written and today's is no exception.  The structured jacket, otherwise known as the "strong-shouldered" jacket is very "on trend" for Spring.  This trend is one with amazing benefits as it encompasses so many other looks that are hot right now like metallic threads, leather, vibrant hues, and color blocking.  The architectural shape of these pieces makes any outfit more polished and the heightened shoulders create definition to narrow one's torso.  In case you're looking for some inspiration here are some of my favorite structured jackets that are trending right now.

   H&M $29.99
Pair with  a floral
 print A-Line skirt or
 pair of floral print pumps

Rebecca Minkoff- Leather Becky Jacket

Rebecca Minkoff
Delancey Tweed
Sparkle Jacket

Rebecca Minkoff
San Diego Colorblock Jacket

Wednesday, February 27

Lacy, Not Racy


Oscar de la Renta
Lela Rose
    This season the fashion scene is all about lace.  While it’s not a new trend, it is one that has evolved. Over the ages, lace has gone from seductive to sophisticated.  Once reserved for lingerie trim only, this fabric is staging a comeback, showing up on everything from sleek day dresses to evening skirts and frilly weekend tops.  Designers like Jason Wu, Balenciaga, and Oscar de la Renta are reinventing this classic with transparent fabrics and vibrant colors like pink and blue.  
     There's nothing more feminine and romantic than a touch of lace, but be sure to tread carefully with this trend.  A wrong inch one way and you could wind up looking too matronly, an inch the other way and you could be mistaken for wearing lingerie.  To avoid these faux pas, stick to neutral hues when layering on lace for day—they’re the most wearable. Also, pair lace items with structured pieces like tailored trousers to tone down their racy look.  Daytime-appropriate lace consists of neutral colored pieces that are lined, rather than shear, and ones that have sharp silhouettes. A garment with minimal lace, and particularly white lace, goes great with denim.  For night, embrace the more colorful and transparent versions of this trend.  But whether dressing in lace for night or day, be sure to wear minimum jewelery and accessories, as moderation is key.  The texture of lace is intricate enough on its own — so avoid flashy embellishments like sequins and beading. I recommend wearing simple stud earrings, pearls or a gold bangle.
     To see how to integrate lace into your professional and personal wardrobe check out these examples of feminine and flirty looks spotted on the runways.
Jason Wu

Jason Wu

Tuesday, February 26

The Fashion World is Smelling Roses in Spring 2013

  Jimmy Choo
Naeem Khan
Paul & Joe

Lady Dior floral print python leather handbag
Nothing is more symbolic of Spring than flowers and this year floral prints are in full bloom and bigger than ever.  Whether it’s freesias or tulips, roses or dandelions, designers have a thing for flowers this Spring.
With variations on this garden theme popping up everywhere, it's no wonder that we've suddenly been propelled into a very Spring-like mood, despite the current subzero temperatures where we all live. Petal prints, rosy hues, and floral brocades are just a few of the petal-inspired details topping our wishlists. Even though the frigid weather will most likely keep us from donning any of these styles soon, one thing is certainly true: when the warm weather arrives, these are the pieces we will be reaching for.  So start smelling the roses and don't worry if dressing in florals from head to toe isn't your thing.  You can embrace these rosy trends by simply wearing a flowery top or pant or simply limit it to an embellished necklace, shoe or bag.

Monday, February 25

Night at the Oscars

      Neutral tones, major embellishments, baroque accents, and curve-hugging silhouettes were everywhere at last night's Academy Awards.  Regardless of which stars took home an Oscar, these leading ladies get my award for best dressed of the night.
Jessica Chastain lit up the red carpet with her flesh tone Armani Prive gown.  Her glimmering gown paired with red lipstick and vintage waves screamed old Hollywood glamor.  Surprisingly, the nude colored gown gave her skin a radiant glow, rather than leaving her fair complexion looking washed out.  The diagonal sequin and beaded applique highlighted her curves and made her body look phenomenal.  She definitely redeemed herself in my book from that lack-luster pale blue Givenchy gown she wore to the Golden globes, which gave her the unflattering appearance of having saggy boobs.

Amy Adams looked gorgeous and whimsical in this pale blue gown by Oscar de la Renta.  The scalloped neckline and train of chiffon ruffles were reminiscent of a true fairytale.  Adams polished off her magnificent look with a classic updo and diamond drop earrings.

Reese Witherspoon graced the red carpet with a colbalt blue and black satin, colorblock dress and accessories by Louis Vuitton.  The stunning ensemble simply exuded old Hollywood glam and made Reese look every bit of a movie star.  Even her hair looked amazing with her luscious locks styled into a wavy side part.

Jennifer Lawrence brought the glamor to the red carpet in a Dior Haute Couture structured, pale pink mermaid gown with a seriously tiered skirt.  The "Silver Linings Playbook" actress donned beaded Chopard jewels, which dangled down her back in an extremely unconventional and avante garde fashion.

Naomi Wattts dazzled on the red carpet in her grey metallic Armani Prive gown- by far one of the most unique and stunning looks of the night.  While most of the stars on the red carpet kept it simple, Naomi chose this risky one shoulder dress with a sexy cut- out design on the left side.  The risk paid off for the Australian beauty as she looked extraordinary in this edgy, yet elegant dress.  Naomi's body was so statuesque in this gown that her figure rivaled that of the golden Oscar itself!

Unfortunately, Anne Hathaway gets my pick for worst dressed of the night. I was seriously underwhelmed by her backless pink satin Dior gown.  When you're nominated for multiple Oscar awards you're supposed to bring it sister! Sadly, this dress lacked that wow factor present in all of my best dressed picks.  Without a plunging neckline, pop of color, or shimmery sequin applique this dress fails to compete with the night's winning looks and certainly is not red carpet worthy.  

Sunday, February 24

My Style Defined

   Flirty. Edgy. Elegant.  These three words describe my sense of style.  You're probably wondering how so many diverse fashions could work their way into one woman's closet.  Simply put, I'm influenced by three style icons with vastly different looks. Kourtney Kardashian influences my fun and flirty side, while Victoria Beckham brings out my elegant side, and Rihanna inspires my edgier flair.
   I believe that variety is the spice of life and I've adhered to this belief in developing my own fashion sense.  The best part about being a girl is that we have countless options for clothes, shoes, and accessories at our finger tips, whereas men have always been limited to t-shirts and jeans or dress shirts and ties.  The immense variety of options for female dress allow for so much versatility and creativity. The possibilities are endless- so go ahead and define a style that is all your own while drawing inspiration from your fashion icons along the way.
   To some she's just a former spice girl who's married to one of the sexiest men in the world.  To me, Victoria Beckman is the epitome of "Posh." Always polished and put together Ms. Beckman never fails to look haute couture.  Victoria actually inspired my love of high end fashion with her trademark sky high heels, pencil skirts, and sheath dresses.  Here she is in 2012- in one of my all time favorite looks- wearing the Roland Mouret "Galaxy" dress with Christian Louboutin "Highness" platform pumps and carrying the "Mini Satchel" textured-leather shoulder bag from her own fashion line.
     Like a chameleon, Rihanna is always changing her style and considering how bold and daring some of her fashion choices have been I'm certain there isn't any look she won't try.  No matter how many transformations her style goes through, it remains edgy and characteristically rocker chic.  Whenever I want to spice up my "Posh" attire I check to see what Rihanna is wearing.  I admit that some of her looks have been a bit too adventurous for me, but at the very least I gain inspiration from them-  even if I tone it down a few notches for myself.  Rihanna is seen here in 2008 wearing a grey sweater with fur hood from "Undercover," torn jeans and grey stiletto pumps.
   The best part of RiRi's style is how diverse it is.  Somehow she manages to wear sweats, leather pants and gowns like the Alaia one she wore to this year's Grammys while looking fabulous in it all!
    What I admire most about Kourtney's style is how it's fun and flirty flair inspires me to tap into my more playful side.  Especially with looks like this one, worn by Kourt in Miami in 2010.  Here she's wearing a black ruffled romper by Robert Rodriguez, shoes by Marni, and sunglasses and purse by Balenciaga.  Kourtney's style is very different from her sisters' with Khole being more of a tom boy and Kim somewhat of a sex kitten.  I prefer Kourtney's feminine and girly style compared to that of her siblings.  Some of my favorite pieces of Kourtney's wardrobe of her mini dresses and skirts, her statement necklaces, flowy Boho dresses and tops and of course her knee boots and high heeled pumps.

Saturday, February 23

Crossbody Bags for Every Occasion

"Life is already a handful- free up your hands wherever you go with a coveted crossbody bag for every occasion." Anonymous

These days the crossbody bag is ubiquitous and I attribute this fact to it's utilitarian function, yet stylish look.  I recently found some of the best crossbody bags in every price range at Nordstrom. See below for my favorite picks showcased in their "Where to Wear Your Crossbody" campaign.

Weekday Commute- This look is great for your Monday to Friday grind.  A compact satchel with adjustable straps comes in handy when you're running for the morning train just as you're juggling your skinny vanilla latte and a gym bag.
Marc Jacobs "Too Hot to Handle" Satchel
Jetsetting- Traveling is always a pain, especially with the female's need to carry around everything she owns.  Simplify life by either opting for a roomy tote with an attachable crossbody strap or go minimalist with a smaller bag you can tuck your tablet into.
Topshop- Studded Lady Satchel
Cocktail Chic- There's no coat check and you've got a glass full of bubbly and a palm brimming with canap├ęs. Good thing this glam clutch comes with a long, hidden strap you can instantly whip out.

Halogen Amy-Mini Crossbody
Night at the Club- About to hit the dance floor with your whole crew? No need to stress where you're going to stow your bag—a rocker-chic number with a chain strap keeps a slim profile as you boogie your way to last call.

Pour la Victoire- Nouveau Cluth
Weekend Jaunt- Whether you're doing a little shopping in the city or visiting an outdoor farmer's market this bag is not only practical, but extremely fashionable.  Just think how wearing it across your body will leave your hands free to carry home all your day's purchases!

Tory Burch Robinson- Mini
Saffiano Leather Crossbody Bag

Friday, February 22

Hey Stud!

    This season it's all about edgy accents- glitsy jewel tones and gold studs galore.  The addition of metal studs to everything from leather to denim adds a rocker-chic edge with a little hint of 80′s flair.  From bags and shoes to jewelry and clothing, metal stud embellishment is a huge trend for Spring.  But be careful with this look as it’s easy to overdo.  To avoid looking costumey, limit the studs to one or two pieces in your outfit and make sure the rest of your look is demure for contrast.  So add some edge to your look this season and take part in this flashy trend with must have studded accessories and clothing.  Here are a few of my star-studded picks:

Express Studded Bateau Neck Ruched Sleeve Sweater

Express Triangle Stud T-Strap Heel

Express Studded Portofino Shirt
Michael Kors Gia Studded Clutch


Michael Kors Nugget Cuff Bracelet, Golden

Thursday, February 21

Mad For Mod

Marc Jacobs color block dress- $398.

    Spring 2013 is bringing back the sixties with an updated twist on "Mod" styles.  Checks, stripes, color blocking and mini skirts are being seen all over the runways.  Today's Swinging Sixties-inspired take might look "mod-meets-modern," but it's a timeless motif.  Wear it, rock it, and love it-- it's groovy baby!
     In Spring '13, Marc Jacobs brought Louis Vuitton back to the Swinging Sixties with geometric shapes, trademark checks and a whole lot of acid green.  The classic Damier collection even got a much-needed facelift, boasting sophisticated yet graphic, big, bold squares of yellow, black, white and green.  The Damier has always been my favorite; most of my bags and accessories from LV have its checkered effect.  I've always found it chicer and more elegant than all-over monograms and especially now, thanks to Marc Jacobs’ fresh vision!   
      Neutral color blocking is eternally chic.  Marc Jacobs has designed dresses with beige, black, and white color blocking for both this own label and the Spring/Summer 2013 collection he created for Louis Vuitton.  He's also created pieces with bolder blocks of color, like red and green. These dresses look great when paired with subtle makeup and accessories, like nude lips and feminine jewels. Check out his Avery silk colorbock dress for $398 available at Piperlime.
    Michael Kors is also embracing the retro trend in 2013 with sky high minis, like the Crepe Circle-Pocket Skirt.  But, if you want this runway collection look, it's going to cost you- $695 for the skirt and $895 for the sweater to be exact!
    For more affordable sixties style, visit Banana Republic.  This season's Mod looks include styles ranging from geometric print tanks and dresses to striped pants and blazers. Whether thick or thin, horizontal or vertical don't be afraid to wear stripes and prints. Just be sure to break up the patterns-- solid on top and print on the bottom, or vice versa.  When worn correctly, these looks can actually create a "skinny-fying" optical illusion!

Wednesday, February 20

Nail Trends

Stiletto nails with cheetah print, block colors, and rhinestones
   We've all got ten little accessories right at our fingertips, so why not use them?  Today, the number of nail trends and colors are so varied that they allow for tremendous self expression.  Gone are the days of wearing squared off nails with a classic french tip.  Nowadays women are sporting manicures with everything from blue, green, and purple polish to plaid, glitter, and animal print embellishments.  I've also noticed bolder and more daring nails in the workplace- even in the courtroom!  This being said, I'm amazed that more women haven't embraced these trends.  Getting your nails done may take time and money, but I promise you it's a modest investment and one that is well worth the expense.    
   As someone who regularly gets manicures it is important for me to stay current on all the latest nail trends. Two of the biggest trends right now are stiletto nails (nails with sharp pointed edges) and glittery nails.  I must admit, however, that stiletto nails are probably one trend I won't be trying any time soon- I prefer to wear stilettos on my feet.  Although, the claw look may not be for me, if it appeals to you I recommend giving it a try.  What I have tried and love is the glitter nail trend.  Statement nails are an easy way to dress up any look and I think glitter polish is great for wearing to concerts, on New Years or to holiday parties, and even just for fun.  One of my favorite shimmery colors is "Confetti Fun" by OPI.  Revlon also recently came out with its "Moon Candy" line that makes achieving a multidimensional, cosmic look at home an easy two step process.  All nine shades of "Moon Candy" come in a double edged bottle, which combines a matte base coat on one end and an iridescent top coat on the other.  Layering the shimmery top coat on the deep base creates an awesome 3D effect that is out of this world.
    As for a timeless nail color that never goes out of style, go with a classic, but bold and sexy shade of red.  I'm a fan of "Apertif" and "Escapades" by Essie or "Red So Hot it Berns" by OPI.  For a more dramatic look in the fall/winter seasons I prefer hues of dark purple, grey and cocoa.  I recommend "Smokin Hot" and "Merino Cool" by Essie or "Chocolate Modore" by Lancome.  "Bermuda Shorts," "Bachelorette Bash" and "Big Spender" (all made by Essie) are my favorite hot pink shades to highlight that golden tan in the summer. 
   Next time you're looking for an inexpensive way to spice up your look consider trying one of these nail trends.

Revlon Moon Candy Polish

Tuesday, February 19

Destination Style

   It's the middle of February and in my opinion there's no better time for a vacation.  By now, just about everyone I know has cabin fever and is jet setting off to some tropical island.  But remember when you take that vacation, your sense of style should not also take one.  Here are some of my picks for your next getaway to make sure you arrive in style.

1. Colored denim shorts or jeans.  I recently bought a pair of turquoise pyramid studded jeans from Michael Kors for $135.  However, you can find much cheaper alternatives at Express for just $69 and they are often on promotion for Buy 1, get the second pair 1/2 off.

2.  An asymmetrical hem dress for that night out on the town or romantic dinner.  I recommend wearing bright colors for a contrast against your glowing tan. You can get this one from BCBG for $198 or at for $145.  If you don't think these prices are within your budget, I promise the splurge is worth it.  This look will become a summer staple for you long after your vacation.

3. A great high heel sandal like the Brass Ankle-Wrap Snakeskin Platform worn by J. Lo at this year's Grammys.  While this shoe goes for a steep $1,390, there are less expensive versions like the Lena sandal from Marciano by Guess, which goes for $142.

4. Of course you'll need a tote to carry all your belongings to the beach in and the MK Jet Set Stripe tote for $328 is the perfect pick.

5.  Lastly a pair of aviator sunglasses and flat sandals are must haves for the day time.  I recommend the MK Peyton Aviators, which can be purchased at Bloomys or MK for $144 and the Michael Kors Jaina Studded Sandal, which retails for $225.

Monday, February 18

Shoe Envy

    As a shoe lover I'm always finding new shoe trends to hold my affection.  Spring is still a month away, but I'm already enamored with one of the season's hottest trends- the metallic cap-toe shoe.  This look is often seen incorporating other popular trends like neon, florals, pastels, alligator print and suede.  Celebrities like Alexa Chung, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Solange Knowles have all been spotted wearing the trend-  living proof that cap-toe shoes are the perfect footnote to all of your spring and summer looks!
    If you're looking to spice up your old stiletto routine for Spring, I suggest taking inspiration from Louis Vuitton who embraced this look in it's 2012 and 2013 Spring collections.  As stylish as they are, however, Louis Vuitton's Merry-go-round pumps & mules aren't for everyone--especially those on a budget.  Prices start from a whopping $1,000 and go up to $9,950 (eek!).  The good news is that there are similar styles for less so everyone can embrace this trend without suffering from shoe envy.  Check out the looks below to accommodate any size budget:
Christian Louboutin, $675. Zara, $70. YSL, $1.095. Kors Michael Kors, $195. Topshop, $100. Stuart Weitzman, $375.

        One of the things I love most about this footwear trend-in addition to its versatility-is that there are so many truly noteworthy styles to choose from. Whether you err on the feminine side or tend to gravitate toward edgier pieces, trust me, there is a cap-toe shoe for you for they come in all heel heights from flats, to kitten heels and the classic stiletto. 
     For some affordable styles, I suggest heading to Polyvore or ASOS, as the online retailer currently stocks a bunch of cute options, like the candy-striped Point Court Shoes with Gold Toe Cap ($64) and the floral-print Sidney Point Court Shoes ($78). Zara has its own take on the trend too--the Court Shoe with Metal Toe Cap ($70)--which comes in a pretty yellow hue (photographed above).

Sunday, February 17

Golden Jewels

    One of the biggest trends this Spring is brightly colored accent pieces and among the season's hottest colors is golden yellow.  As a frequent wearer of statement jewelry and bright colors, I am naturally a fan of this trend.  A couple of weeks ago I purchased two golden yellow necklaces from (  Both pieces were handmade by a seller in China called Fashion of the World.  Each necklace was extremely affordable, costing less than $20 a piece, and they shipped on the same day I ordered them.  Shipping for the first item was free and just $5.99 for the second item.  To my surprise, the necklaces arrived yesterday, five days sooner than expected (the seller indicated it would take 15 days for them to arrive).  As promised, I am now providing my feedback on the purchase of these golden jewels.

   The first piece I ordered was the Olivia Bib necklace.  Of the two pieces, this necklace was my first choice.  (I ordered the second one only because it was hard to tell just by looking at them online which I would like more).  I am happy to report that in person the Olivia Bib necklace appeared exactly as it was pictured online.  Thus, I was completely satisfied my purchase.  I even wore it to brunch today with a pair of golden tear drop earrings and a woven yellow bracelet.  I received several compliments on the necklace, which I used to accessorize a simple a white blazer, black tank top, and pair of blue skinny jeans.
     Unfortunately, I was not as satisfied with the second piece, which was the Bubble Bib statement necklace.  What immediately drew me to the necklace was it's unique bib concept-  it was unlike anything I had ever seen.  I also loved the chandelier or cascading effect of the necklace.  Per the seller's description, the necklace measured 28 inches in length and was suitable for wearing to a wedding or holiday party.  Based upon this description, I anticipated the necklace to be a delicate and elegant piece. What I actually received, however, was anything but demure.
    The necklace did not appear anything like the piece of jewelry that was pictured online.  For starters, it was much too long.  While I never measured out 28 inches, I assumed the necklace length would be adjustable to fit someone of my size.  This is because the seller posted a picture of a model, who looked to be about my size, wearing the necklace and it fit her beautifully.  Although the necklace fit her small and thin neck well, on me it was oversized and bulky.  In addition, the additional 4 inches that the chain added to the necklace caused it to fall too low on my neck.  I tried to shorten the necklace by connecting the clasp higher up on the chain, but as I did so the whole necklace became uneven, preventing it from laying centered on my neck. The higher up I pulled the necklace the more crooked it became.
    Since I was not completely satisfied with my purchase and because the seller endorsed customer feedback I decided to send him a message, requesting a refund and inquiring how to return the item.  Within a couple of hours I received his response wherein he apologized for the item not meeting my expectations.  He also told me that I could keep the necklace, even though he would provide me with a full refund.
    Despite not being satisfied with my entire order, I would rate my overall Etsy experience as a 9 out of 10.  I used a seller who had received 100% positive feedback from his customers and in my opinion he honored his promise of complete customer satisfaction.  Therefore, I would highly recommend the site and will continue to use it for my jewelry buying needs in the future.  Note: If golden jewels are not your thing, both necklaces come in a variety of other colors including mint, turquoise, orange, pink, purple, black, white and red.  Here's the link to Fashion of the World's page:

Happy Shopping!

Saturday, February 16

NY Fashion Week Wrap Up

   New York Fashion Week at Lincoln Center wrapped up this week.  It ran from February 7th to February 14th and during this time the designers showcased looks from their Fall 2013/Winter 2014 collections.  Not being fortunate enough to attend any of the shows, I chose the next best thing to sitting front row and watched the shows of my favorite designers on YouTube.  The Michael Kors show blew me away and I coveted everything on the runway!  Tory Burch, Monique Lhuillier, and Rachel Zoe also impressed me with their collections.  For the reader's convenience I have included links from my favorite fashion shows below, but by simply doing a YouTube search you can find shows from the rest of the designers who participated in Fashion Week.

Michael Kors

The most outstanding feature of MK's collection was his utilization of a wide-ranging color palette.  The collection included a vibrant mix of electric colors, such as taxi cab yellow, royal blue, and neon orange juxtaposed against white, black, olive and charcoal.  The looks were urban chic, yet extremely polished and paid homepage to the designer's NYC roots. These looks were accented by leather details, bold belts and metallic pumps.  My favorite pieces were the houndstooth capes, peplum dresses, and charcoal suits with leather motorcycle chic tailoring.

Tory Burch,default,pg.html
Quite the opposite of MK's contemporary styled looks, Tory Burch showed inspiration from the 1920’s, 1930’s and 1940’s. The vintage inspired attire was paired with an equally vintage inspired handbag collection, which included classic satchels, shoulder bags and clutches.  The looks were wearable for women of all body types and were best suited for professional and formal occasions.  Her pieces were adorned with lace, sequins, crystals, and oversize bits of colored metal.   It wasn't just the clothing that got decorated, however, as many of the shoes and accessories had dragonflies affixed to them that caught the light as the models came down the runway.

Monique Lhuillier!
If there's one word to describe Monique's collection it's opulent.  Her gowns and cocktail dresses were suitable for wearing on the red carpet at the next award show.  They contained rich hues of gold, emerald, scarlet, and royal blue.  The bright colors were complimented by embellishments of crystal, sheer lace necklines and feathered hems.

Rachel Zoe
Remaining true to her 1970s boho-chic style, Rachel Zoe's collection featured clothing in mostly neutral hues like camel, cream, navy, gray, and black.  The flowy Bohemian style maxi dresses and oversized floppy hats were juxtaposed with an equestrian inspired look characterized by riding boots, fitted pants and cropped blazers.  The garments themselves ran the gamut from cozy (the show opened with an oversize cardigan over a leather shirt and tight fitting cropped ankle pants) to sexy (a short black dress with folded lapels debuted halfway through the show). There was also a plethora of chic leather as displayed in the form of a hunter green t-shirt and on the sleeves of a cropped canvas trench.