Go Bold – Printed Pant Perfection

Dare to Wear – Bold Pants

Pants (Sold Outshop the post below for other bold styles I’m digging!) | Top | BootsBag (similar)

All Photography – Lauren Parr Photography

Welcome to my new favorite trend – bold pieces of clothing. From statement sleeves to fashion-forward footwear to patterned pants, more is more these days. I love that fashion is allowing for more vibrant choices, letting people express themselves more loudly than before. However, even with more being more, it is still important to keep in mind that pairing is key with bolder prints and textiles.

Here, I took these (OMG-to-die-for-amazing) pants by one of my faves, Alexis, and paired them with a simple black turtleneck. This look could be taken up a notch with these gold boots I have pictured, which work despite their bold design because of the way the gold compliments the feel of the print. The pants could just as easily be paired with simple black (or my favorite, this season’s bordeaux) pumps.

These pants may be too wild for you, but I think regardless of your personal preference, it’s important to remember that it’s OK to take risks, and not spend too much time worrying whether or not you can “pull it off” – it’s all in the confidence. #daretowear

Here are a few of my faves:

One | Two | Three | Four | Five | Six

All Photography by Lauren Parr Photography

When an Outfit Moves You

…. And This Dress Definitely Does…

Dress (Sold out – alternates below) | Shoes (also in Silver and Black) | Harness (alternates: same, but white – 1, black –  2, 3)

All Photography – Lauren Parr Photography

One of my favorite things about fashion, is the way you feel when you wear a certain outfit. And to me, one of the most noticeable feelings is when you’re wearing something that actually creates movement in the way that it is designed. Whether it’s a flowing skirt, or in this case a fringe detail, I love pieces that create a rhythm when you wear them just by the way they move when on you.

My dress is sold out (though you can occasionally find on eBay or other re-listing sites – it’s the Alice McCall “Are You Ready Girl” dress/romper – mine is Amber, but it came in red, black and a few pastels at one point too – if you go that route – happy hunting!!), but below are some of the pieces out right now that I’m crushing on for the free-flowing textiles and structure that help to create movement:

One | Two | Three | Four | Five | Six

Ways to Wear: the Harness

How to Wear an Edgy Accessory: the Harness

From Day to Play, Casual Cool

Top (White, Black) | Harness (alternates: same, but white – 1, black –  2, 3) | Jeans | Boots

Date Night Done Right

Dress (sold out) | Harness (alternates: same, but white – 1, black –  2, 3) | Boots

Post-Work Happy Hour Quick Change 

Top (White, Black) | Harness (alternates: same, but white – 1, black –  2, 3) | Pants

All Photography – Lauren Parr Photography

If you’ve followed me for any time at all, you have probably picked up that I have an eye for the edgier pieces of clothing. I absolutely LOVE taking something unique or a bit out there and trying to figure out how to make it wearable (at least enough for me).

Harnesses are a fun trend that have come in and out the past year or so and I love what they do for an outfit. I particularly like pairing them with something less expected – something feminine that will help soften the harsher elements of the accessory.

When I first wore this, I chose a more feminine dress like the one pictured above and I was met with surprise from a friend who had thought you could really only wear a look like this with something like a t-shirt. It’s true that you can, and that’s one great way to wear them, but it surprisingly enough isn’t the only way a piece like this works.

The most important thing to remember is the neckline – the fuller your bust, the higher you want it to be to avoid treading into bondage territory (unless that’s your thing in which case you go for it girl). The other thing that helps is going for a fitted style so the harness doesn’t bunch or pull on the top. Lastly, I would try to pair with something soft and feminine as mentioned above to keep from going overboard on the look!

It’s fun to wear something unexpected, especially if you know you have the confidence to pull it off!

Trend I’m Crushing On: Sheer Shoes

Bare-All Booties and More…

Top (also in black) | Skirt | Shoes (also in Silver and Black)| Bag

All Photography – Lauren Parr Photography

You all know I love when people #daretowear #somethingdifferent – and one of my favorite trends is the sheer shoe-wear people are rocking these days. And this particular trend – isn’t even that hard to rock. I mean they’re clear, clear matches everything right?

You can wear them with jeans but I like the way they lengthen the leg with a mini skirt, particularly if they’re a bootie (as you have to be extremely particular when pairing a pant that goes inside the actual boot). Here, I’ve paired mine with a fun (also trending) metallic leather mini and a t-shirt to keep the look casual. Now that it’s (finally) starting to get colder, this same look could be paired with a neutral leather jacket or (my personal preference) some fabulous fur (faux or faux real – depending on your personal beliefs ;)).

I love how this trend also helps create the perfect transition into fall (which is still taking quite a bit of time for us in Texas). Below are links to some of my fave styles, at varying price points – enjoy!

One | Two | Three | Four | Five | Six 

 

Make the Best out of Your Black Friday

It is undeniable – November is probably the best month to shop all year – fall collections are out and in full force (and if you’re in Texas it’s finally starting to cool down (kindof) to wear them!), winter and all of its sparkly glory starts to hit the sites, and yes, of course, we have Black Friday and Cyber Monday which for most places is actually a full blown week of sales.

To me though, I think the best way to shop Black Friday – is to prepare in advance. It’s easy to spend needless money on a day like Black Friday (and GURL you best believe I am preaching to my very own choir right now). “But it’s 90% off!” “But do you really need a-NOTHER pair of black boots? Or 7 leather skirts? Or another ‘New Years Dress’ option when you have 5 sitting in your closet?” TBH – when I’m having this same battle with myself in the face of 90% off… I usually lose. Well responsible me loses and the super cute but never-has-enough-savings version of me winnnnssssss (if you can call that winning).

But I find one of the best ways to tackle this problem prior to a big sale day like the-biggest-and-baddest sale-weekend-of-the-year. The best way to approach the day is to pick the things you know you really need or want to get (whether they were on sale or not) and then try to figure out how to get those things for the best price. Whether it’s a new fur (or faux for you animal lovers ;)) coat, or this specific pair of shoes, or a particular designer brand of jeans, follow these steps to ensure you get the most out of your Black Friday.

1. Try to list out all the things you want

  • Whether you know the exact brand, make and model, and have a link to the goods, or just know you need a specific type of thing, a list helps you focus on the things you really want(/need – I’m definitely calling fun faux fur print coats a need for this season).

2. Google is your friend

  • Once you know what you want, and especially once you’ve determined the exact name and style number – USE google; find the retailer who has the best price and the best sale (more on how to determine this in step three) and buy from them before clicking on the first seemingly-good-discount you encounter

3. Don’t be afraid to ask (/haggle/beg etc.)

  • Once you’ve found  a few options, don’t be afraid to ask for a price match if you’re between two and one has better shipping or customer service or the size you want, yada yada.
  • ALSO, if you’re doing research in advance, don’t hesitate to straight up ASK them if they’re going to be putting the item you want on sale, or having a sale generally. If they can’t tell you or aren’t sure – ASK again if they price match themselves within a period of time. Will they honor the discount on anything you’ve bought in the past 30 days? If so you’ve got some leeway.

4. Pre-order can be a thing – don’t compete!

  • You CAN sometimes pre-order, buy in advance, or reserve/hold items from some retailers to be sure you aren’t competing with every other bee-ya who is going to go stealing that bag you had your eyes on (which can cause real grief – I missed out on a limited edition dress recently and shed real human tears; not my proudest moment).
  • Again – ask them – if you know you want to buy something regardless of the price, BUT you want to get the best deal, ask if they’ll price match if the item goes on sale over the weekend. That way you know you have it and you can still get refunded if you find out there was a better deal waiting for you.

I find being smart about how you shop enables you to extend that wallet so much further (and this is something I’m all too familiar with having to do). Good luck and happy shopping ladies!!

Conquer your fears… and look good doing it… My Dreamforce Styleguide

 Ready to Take on the World (and/or Workday)

Top | Pants | Bag (sold out – more Valentino deals here) | Shoes

All Photography – Lauren Parr Photography

When asked to speak at this year’s Dreamforce conference, I knew I had to take the opportunity. It would be a great experience, great exposure for my #dayjob (#realjob… #onlyjobthatpaysme…), and overall a good idea professionally speaking. So I immediately said yes.

… I also then immediately basically sh*t myself because public speaking is one of my biggest fears. (Outside of planes, and ironically I also had to fly to this conference sooooo there’s that). But I think it’s important, every now and again, to challenge yourself, make yourself try something new, that makes you uncomfortable… because when you come out on the other side (as you always do) then one way or the other, you’ll have learned something new about yourself, and you’ll prove yet again there’s something else you can do.

I also firmly believe (no surprise here) that what you wear for such an occasion is important. Not because of what other people might think about what you look like, but about how what you wear can make you feel powerful and in control. At least that’s true for me.

I chose Alexis, as I often do, because this designer knows how to design to make a women feel in control and on top of the world. It’s important though, when dressing for a public-speaking engagement to also be thoughtful about what will make you feel good, while still being appropriate for the situation.

Many women in this situation would wear all black, but I am not many women, and I rarely wear all black (not that that is bad at all – it’s just not me). I like to stand out and where something that is always a little different – but I had to be careful not to go over the top and distract my audience.

I chose these pants because they were statement in silhouette, but simple enough in pattern and color (all neutrals). I chose a simple top and comfortable heels to keep the look overall looking clean and easy. That way, I got to keep my “me” intact, but still looked professionally appropriate.

The speech went much better than I ever could have thought it would – AND I got so many compliments on these pants soooooo double win 🙂

It’s important to think about how you can continuously modify your style – so that you always stay true to you, while still being able to transition for multiple occasions.

Mixed Print Madness

Mixed Prints: Already Ready for Vacay…

Top | Skirt (sold out but matching suit still available)| Bag (black available here)| Sunglasses

While I only got married a few weeks ago… and we’re waiting until December to take our honeymoon, I of course am already planning what to wear! As the colder months approach, so will the vacations, and one of my favorite trends to take my foreign fashion style up a notch (with minimal effort) is to mix prints.  There are so many ways to test out this trend, but it’s important to keep a couple things in mind in order to make the look work:

1. Pair the Prints

  • When picking out which prints to use, be sure to select ones that compliment each other. A good trick is to pick a common color scheme as well as a common theme – for example, in this look – the prints both feature bright colors, include yellow, and evoke a tropical, warm theme. The look wouldn’t work as well if any one of those elements was missing

2. Proportions are Key

  •  It’s important that you choose pieces that are in the right proportion to each other. This look for example would have worked much less well if the top had as much fabric as the skirt. You want to be sure you don’t overdo it – and with prints, especially bold ones, it’s easy to do that if you aren’t careful about how much of each print is featured. You generally want to let one print speak for the majority of the look.

3.  Accessorize Appropriately

  •  Choose accessories that are simple to let the rest of the outfit shine. Certain more neutral prints can still be accompanied by a bold color, but avoid using another print and if you must, be sure its simple enough not to take away from the rest of the look.

Fall in London (where it’s actually Fall ;))

Fall Trends in London

9-5 in Fulham
Top (similar styles 123) | Coat | Jeans | Shoes (similar style) | Bag | Sunglasses
Cocktails in Chelsea
Brunching in Kensington  
Jumpsuit | Bag | Earrings
Late Nights in Soho
Top | Boots | Bag | Sunglasses | Necklace
Visiting London for work recently gave me the best chance to start bringing out my favorite fall pieces. London brought rainy weather – as expected – and normally I’m not a fan, but something about London’s rain makes it so much more beautiful.
For a city as big as it is, it’s full of so much more than just your typical syscrapers, industrial buildings and packed city streets. While London has that, there’s a clean, regal, and even colorful feeling to the whole city. From it’s population, to its’ greenery and sophisticated architecture, London is one of my favorite places to be, no matter how many times I  visit.
While London has it’s own effortlessly chic style (one I always try to embody, but admittedly haven’t perfectly captured yet), being there for fall made it clear that there are a few styles that aren’t going anywhere just yet:
1.  Velvet
  • Yup – our favorite 90s throwback is clearly here to stay. From boots to booties, to complete dresses and sets, this trend isn’t going ANYWHERE. Here are a few of my fave looks:

Sets and Separates:

Luxe Accessories:

 

2.  The Jumpsuit
  • Jumpsuits are one of my favorite revivals from the 70s and they definitely not going anywhere. Jumpsuits will still be highly prevalent on the fashion scene and will see some fun twists on the classic – like these wide leg ones I found from Flynn Skye. A few of my other favorite fall ready jumpsuits:

Chic:

Unique:
Full of color:
3.  Polka Dots
  • While a newer trend, this fad that popped up in the end of summer is converting nicely into fall with black and white and other darker styled prints. A few styles I can’t live without:

Skirts:

Tops:
Pants:
4. The Culotte
  • A perfect transition piece – these wide leg cropped wonders are becoming ever more popular. They evoke the epitome of chic while still being comfortable and feminine. A few of my faves:

Casual cool:

All dressed up:

And that’s a wrap on my fall faves…. now I’m off to get married, next time I write you I’ll be a Mrs…. stay tuned for wedding deets!!!

A little Sweet a little Street

Top | Skirt | Bag (sold out – similar here)| Shoes (sold out – similar here)

As fall fast approaches, one of my favorite ways to transition into cooler months is to pair some of my softer, more summery pieces with edgier fall-ready accessories (I think a bag is the easiest way to accomplish this trend). For this look I took this lovely polka dot set by Alexis (also feeling like polka dots is the new gingham so be on the look out for more of this print to pop up) – and paired it with this edgy Valentino bag (that I’ve been lusting over forEVER and finally found on sale).

A few of my other favorite combos for the trend are listed below:

  1. Lovers + Friends Pant Set (Top | Bottom) with this Bag

  2. Auguste (x Revolve) maxi dress with this Bag

  3. House of Harlow Gwen Culotte Set *comes in two colors! (Top | Bottom) with this Bag

  4. Free People Mini Dress with this Bag

  5. Clayton Skirt + Indah Top with this Bag

 

Finding Your Dream Bag…

Top | Shorts | Bag | Shoes (similar, mine are sold out)

I often get asked “how do you do it?” and what people really want to know is… how do I manage to get the closet I do on the budget I have? (I mean, I do decently well, but I’m certainly no Kardashian and the vast majority of my wardrobe is self-funded)

The truth is I spend too much. 😉 BUT the second truth is, I find a LOT of items that I love for less. Way less. Often half or less…less. There are many different components to this, and I’ll get ya more #protips in the future, but the first one is how to find and spot a good deal on designer duds (specifically bags) on eBay.

The first thing I HAVE to warn you is this can be a VERY daunting task. It’s very important that you have some idea how to spot a fake. Now, this isn’t going to be an article on all of the specific things to look for because there’s a ton of specifics by brand and style BUT generally speaking I look for a few things:

1. Compare the photo against a catalog 

  • Ask for several photos of the bag – front, back, inside, under, hardware, serial numbers, lining, etc. Be confident that these look the same way they do in a retailer’s catalog photo, and try to look at several examples of authentic bags.

2. Collect information about the seller

  • Find out their rating, have they sold other designer bags? If so, what is their feedback? If they are selling a lot of designer goods, try to figure out where  the come from (i.e. NOT a counterfeit factory).
  • Personally I like to get lightly used bags that come from another non-career seller with all or most original packaging and sometimes a receipt OR a verified consignment store with an online presence (this one came from a consignment store who authenticate prior to listing).

3. When in doubt, ask for authentication

  • You can always get a bag authenticated. There are certain forums that will look at photos for you online (like the Purse Forum [note I am not a member and cannot verify the quality of the site, but know it is a popular one for authentication]). There are also certain brick and mortar locations you can take an item once purchased for authentication. Call any of your local retailers or designer stores to inquire.

Alright, now that the not fun part is out of the way – there are just a FEW simple easy tips for getting the bag of your dreams!

1. Know the brand you want AND the style name

  • It is MUCH harder to find a bag under generic terms (Gucci embroidered bag, or YSL chain clutch, etc) – there are so many similar or varied types of these bags, you really want to know the proper name of the bag – i.e. “Gucci Sylvie Medium” or “Saint Laurent Kate” bag.

2. Start a search for the bag by style name 

Resellers:

  • I usually start with resellers and see what comes up! You may find what you’re looking for right away. If not, each of the following resellers are great to try depending on your needs:
  • eBay
    • Pros – you can save your search! Search by style name and then click “Follow search” – you can opt in for both alerts via phone and email so that the bag of your dreams comes to YOU! (Which is actually how I ended up with this one!) You can also return almost anything to the site (so if you are worried something is fake, send it back right away and eBay generally makes sure you’re refunded regardless of whether you can prove it’s fake – also a con for sellers).
    • Cons – there are a LOT of fakes to sift through and the site itself doesn’t offer any authentication services.
  • Poshmark
    • Pros – offers posh concierge for anything over $500 – items are authenticated before they even get to you!
    • Cons – harder to search and smaller marketplace. Also only have three days to make a claim once an item is delivered so careful ordering if you’re out of town!
  • Tradesy
    • Pros – free authentication provided if you’re worried after getting something (even outside of return window if they find it’s actually inauthentic they will refund you as long as it’s not too far out).
    • Cons – Higher prices generally, more limited selection.
  • Luxury Garage Sale
    • Pros – great customer service, will help you find your dream bag of choice (how I got my Celine!)
    • Cons – newer consigner so slightly smaller selection.
  • The RealReal
    • Pros – Large marketplace and lots of availability in terms of items.
    • Cons – still can’t find everything and it’s a larger company so there’s less hands on help.
  • Google
    • I also usually try a simple google search in addition to see if there are any other consignment stores etc. I didn’t think of that come up!

Hope this helps you find the bag (or other accessory) of your dreams! I know it always works for me 🙂