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Sunday, November 6, 2011

Belle Noire

Before reading my post on Belle Noire, please take the time to vote for your favorite designer.  Next month, I will publish a post on where to find great deals on clothes by the winning designer, so keep a look out for that!

Black is a pretty complex color, it can evoke the feel of the roaring twenties and vintage glamour, or the feel of a cutthroat, modern, businesswoman. An obvious upside is that black really is instantly slimming (not myth, I swear) and it is pretty versatile.  A downside is that it can sometimes send a message you don't want to, like looking accidentally gothic when you were going for sophisticated.  Here are some cute and chic ways to wear black, without going too far.

The Ruffle Jacket:


This Green Dragon cropped jacket is totally adorable.  It creates an abstractly military feel with the button placement, but the ruffles keep it feminine and fun. It is only $39.99 marked down from $105.00 at beyondtherack.com, so check it out, and you can look covered up and cute all at once.  

The Bag:

I am in love with this Sonia Rykiel embellished suede shoulder bag - like true love kind of in love.  It gives off an edgy-glamorous feel with the bows and crystal-embellished bird, but it is still casual enough to take to class without feeling overdressed.  It is big enough to hold all of your necessities, but not big enough to make you feel like walking down the street is a resistance workout.  In short, this bag is little less than perfection.  Of course, in my opinion, the thing that makes it the most perfect is that it is 70% off at the Outnet, so definitely look for it there first.  

The Accessory:


You have to be careful with black jewelry, because there is a very fine line between dark and sexy, and just plain creepy.  These black rose hair clips by Olini Floral take you up to the line without going over.  They are elegant and formal, with a vintage feel, and just a little bit off-beat.  They would be perfect for helping a cute dress "grow up" for a semi-formal, or for adding a dramatic flair to an outfit for school.  They are only $35.70 on Etsy at http://www.etsy.com/listing/78298410/15-off-ends-at-midnight-set-of-2-black?ref=sr_b1d4533cbf2a0192f3472b6a85b0ec2b0047a6d4ac168f0909dfe62ebae8ed36_1320591097_14099232_black_flower, plus you would be supporting an artisan accessory designer.  

Happy Shopping :) 




Thursday, November 3, 2011

Cold Weather Clothing

It is no secret that I have a hard life. One of the most difficult things for me right now is living in the south of France for a semester; while my friends from home were able to start wearing sweaters back in September, and I have been forced to wear sundresses, little tank tops, and bathing suits all fall.  However, all summers eventually come to an end - even on the Mediterranean - and now I am exploring fall fashion in a serious way.  And because I am still a broke college student, and living in a country that uses the Euro (which has a deadly exchange rate against the U.S. dollar), I am turning to the discount American web sites we all know and love to stock my cold weather wardrobe.  Read on for my selection of affordable autumn clothing.

The Sweater:


Okay, I think that we have all bought something from the Victoria's Secret catalogue because it looked so pretty on the model, and then found that it was completely unwearable in real life.  This blue sweater with leather buckles is not one of those items; it covers enough to be warm and classy, it is long enough to prevent tragic gapping that can sometimes occur, and the leather on the bottom is totally adorable.  It also happens to be 49% off the the Victoria's Secret web site, so it is a good investment for winter.

The Coat: 

This is a Lafayette 148 New York wool short sleeved coat.  I became a fan of Lafayette 148 New York because of designs like this; it is chic and easy to wear at the same time.  Depending on wear you live, the short sleeves may or may not be a huge problem, but for a coat like this, I think it is worth shivering a little at the bus stop, because you will look fabulous.  This piece is 48% off at the saksfifthavenue web site, but unfortunately even with that discount it is still $470.99: so sad. 

The Boots:
Boots are a necessary item for winter because they keep the foot warm and dry from snow.  More importantly, these Mina high heeled boots by SM will make you taller, and give you a snow-bunny meets New York kind of feel that does not come along very often.  For the PETA fashionistas, please note that these boots were made with faux fur (real leather, but then you can't have everything) so no real snow bunnies were harmed to make you look great.  They are 41% off at DSW, so look for them there, and take on the snow with style.  

Enjoy the cold weather, everybody, and

Happy Shopping :) 


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Have a Chic Thanksgiving

It is easy to be chic for just about every holiday with the exception of Thanksgiving.  For Christmas you can wear jewel tones and adorable winter hats, for the 4th of July you really only need a patriotic bikini and to starve yourself for a week, and Halloween offers no end to fashion-forward dress-up ideas if you are so inclined.  Unfortunately for us all, however, Thanksgiving is not exactly a vogue holiday.  The images that come to mind when one thinks of Thanksgiving are pilgrims...and turkeys. Hot. To make matters worse, it is a holiday that you celebrate by eating as much wholesome (fattening) food as your stomach can possibly hold.  Again, not something one would normally associate with fashion.  However, for those of us truly dedicated to fashion, it is possible to look good this Thanksgiving, with a few key elements.

The Dress: 

This babydoll sweater dress by French Connection serves two very important functions in Thanksgiving fashion: hide and distract.  The mercifully loose fit around the stomach hides any signs of gluttony, and will remain comfortable even after your second slice of apple pie (I am, of course, assuming that everybody eats as much as me every Thanksgiving). And of course, black is instantly slimming, and will forgive one night of indulgence.  Second, the dress is short enough to divert the eye straight to those legs - they won't be suffering from the consequences of turkey at least.  Get it at bluefly for 30% off, and feel as close to sexy as possible on a holiday of eating.  

The Tights:

If you follow my advice, you will be wearing a minidress in late November. Be reasonable: protect your legs from dry skin, and overall death with cute tights like this Anne Klein pair, $8.99 at kgstores.com  

The Scarf: 


It is time to break the homely color-scheme of Thanksgiving brown and burnt orange.  This hand-painted Moon Waves silk scarf by SilkScarvesColorado will add excitement to a black outfit, and will keep you from looking like a pilgrim - trust me, there are no fashionable pilgrims.  It's not a sale item, but Thanksgiving is a holiday of indulgence, right? And it is only $52.00 on Etsy, so this statement piece won't break your budget.  

The Shoes: 

One of the best parts about Thanksgiving is that it is a time to sit down and count your blessings, and sitting down means that you can wear completely unpractical shoes without killing your feet. These stiletto booties by Rosegold are so beautifully unpractical that it is like they were made specifically for Thanksgiving.  Plus, don't forget one key element of this outfit is distracting the eye from your stomach to your amazing legs.  For us mortals without natural born amazing legs, these boots will work wonder.  For the near future, they are 46% off at gilt.com.  

I know Thanksgiving is a couple of weeks away, but start shopping early to have your perfect holiday outfit prepared, and as always,

Happy Shopping :)