Get the Look | How to Wear Ruffles on the Top Half of the Fashion Equation

Today's 'Get the Look' is all about a little ruffle action courtesy of a Mulberry sleeveless top. I adore it, but does it adore me? That's the question we all ask right? We see something amazing, fall in love with a look in a glossy mag or catalog, and then start wondering, "will it look good on me?"

Is there going to be mutual fashion admiration or will this be a mis-match?

It's a great question. Compared to the styled-out, touched-up models, we (I'm generalizing here, but based on my own industry experience and styling clients, I'm guessing most of you can relate) are working with real-woman figures, no photoshopping, and the ever-present time crunch that occurs every morning as we ask the million dollar question: what am I going to wear today?

A great product (top, pant, jean, etc...) is one thing. A great piece that works for you and not against you is another. The trick is knowing what works best for your body type. On to the look, and then I'll touch on which body type this works for so you can see who should get the look and who may want to pass:

how to wear ruffles for day

Shop the Look:

 body type img

Body Type Recap: The volume that the ruffles bring on top work well for our Rectangle Ladies out there, just make sure you cinch it in with either a belt (soft, nothing too rigid to fight against the fabric) or possibly a layer of a more structured cardi/blazer that adds  definition by narrowing at the waist. Apples, walk away from the ruffles on top and go with something clean, streamlined, v-neck, etc. Your aim is to narrow your top and balance out your proportions with the bottom half.

Hourglass ladies, if you have a fuller bust you will want to cinch in the waist and swap out the skinny pant for something with more oomph along the hem. A bootcut or slight flare, let alone a wide leg (fitted through the thigh though), would be perfect to keep things in proportion.

And finally, my gorgeous Pear ladies out there. These ruffles are your friend because they will add shape and a little extra volume on top to balance out your curves below. No need to cinch in at the waist here. Just let it flow.

 

 Keep the shopping momentum going strong and continue on to the StyleShaker Closet where our team edits down our top picks and lines them up along the virtual shelves every week. This is where you can really dig into whatever you happen to be looking for. It's the perfect shopping starting point:

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While you're at it, keep the momentum going and get some more inspiration in:

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Get the Look | When Feeling Frou Frou is a Fashion Force to be Reckoned With

It's time to get the look...What exactly does feeling 'frou frou' entail you ask? Good question. It's different for everyone, but for me, 'frou frou' (also the name of a great electronic duo in music) means embellished. It's all in the details and 'frou frou' details usually have a strong femme spin on them. What better way to pull off said feminine focus than with strips of curled silk organza attached to a mini right? Throw in some studs, a clean white blazer for some coverage, gold, lots of gold, and you have yourself a bold evening look. This girl isn't drinking Cosmos, nope, she's more of a Satan's Circus kinda gal. Tough, sweet, and a little spicy.

Check out the look I'm loving:

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Giuseppe Zanotti Bootie giuseppezanottidesign.com

Michael Kors Gia Studded Metallic Leather Clutch Bag (gold only available) neimanmarcus.com

ASOS Boxchain Choker necklace (SOLD OUT: shop more necklaces here) asos.com

 

Look-spiration is one thing. It's a very important part of any fashion equation. But if there's anything I've learned over the past decade in the fashion industry and more recently, working with my personal styling/shopping clients, it's that the 'what to wear' is only one half of the equation. It only makes sense, comes to life, when you add the other half, the 'how to wear' it half. Bottom line, you can't have one without the other. Well, I lie, actually you can have one without the other, and many of you I'm sure do. How can you tell? Easy, two questions:

1. You have a full closet and nothing to wear.

2. You keep wearing the same twenty percent that's in your closet, leaving the other eighty percent of what's hanging in there feeling ridiculously neglected (read: collecting dust before you gather up the strength to donate or list on ebay).

Sound familiar? I know. I have built a business on the above two style dilemmas and now, I'm taking it beyond my personal one-on-one clients via my Virtual Lookbooks, e-guides that spell out what looks are best for your body type. Allow me to repeat that, 'best for YOUR body type.' You can look through glossy mags and catalogs until the cows come home, but if you don't know how to take that inspiration and make it work for you then what's the point right?

Contact me to learn more about how to get your hands on one of my Lookbooks here.

In the mean time, there's always more to see. Get back to more inspiration here.

Get My Look | What I Wear to Pay Homage to the Hourglass Silhouette

Setting the intention: With everything I do on this site, my intention is simply to inspire you. It always has been and it always will be. Should you crack a smile on top of this, then my day is made. On to the Get My Look post.

Remember Fruit Stripe Gum? Remember how not good it was and yet we still went back to it for some reason? Anyway, nostalgic moment aside, the stripes kept me coming back for more (along with the instantaneous sugar fix) back in the eighties, and they still do the same thing for me today. Case in point, I found this striped pencil skirt and have been obsessed with it ever since.

Note: Don't freak out about having stripes on the lower half of your body. I'm not going to say this look is for everyone, that's not the point. But I can tell you that the old fashion rule that has kept so many (I hear this from clients all the time, almost as much as I get the wearing white after Labor Day or mixing metals question...almost) running in the opposite direction of a simple stripe is not necessary. Sure, if you have bright, wide stripes running right across the widest part of your body, you may want to walk away. But there's definitely a way to incorporate stripes into any fashion equation, even when it involves the bottom half of a look.

Case in point, here's today's look, what I wear when I want to work all angles of my hourglass silhouette & embrace a strong stripe moment without crossing over the line into Tacky Land (it's a scary place filled with bedazzled belts & tie-dyed hair scrunchies). Time to Get My Look:

get my look, what I wear when I want to work my hourglass silhouette

In order to Get My Look, you'll be needing to shop my look. Here's how (click the pics below):

Vince Fav Tank Top farfetch.com

Kelly Wearstler Sonya Ring kellywearstler.com

Gorjana Fatima Layered Necklace- (SOLD OUT shop more necklaces here) shopbop.com

Get My Look | The Body Type Breakdown: Obviously this is going to go well with most hourglass silhouettes. The stripes are thin enough at the hip to keep things looking long and lean, not the other way around. If that was a big wide yellow stripe, I would not be using the skirt in any look. But what about the other body types out there? How does this pencil skirt look stack up for the Pears, the Rectangles, and the Apples of the bunch? Good question...here's your answer:

body type img with checks

Rectangles, you are good to go. Hourglasses, this one is made for you if you're ok with flaunting what you've got. There's a way to do it without giving away all the mystery. This would be it. There's something about putting it all on display that reads a little boring to me. I know, I know, not the descriptor you would think I'd use, but it just says to me that there's little creativity there. There are ways to highlight your assets, and I whole-heartedly believe in doing that. Key word: highlight, not shine a spotlight on. The tank top is body-conscious, along with the skirt, so there's a definite silhouette that is drawn, but at least there's coverage and a little print (in this case, stripes) to keep things interesting. Throw in the accessories, and it all goes from interesting to polished.

Pears, you may want to go with a solid color on this one. You could try the stripes, but solids would be a better bet.

Apples, this exact look is not necessarily in your style 'wheelhouse.' Try going with a top that moves a bit further away from the torso, maybe a looser tee, but keep the constructed neckline. You want to add a little volume, again, something in the form of a peplum and not just bulk, to the waist to balance out your proportions. It's always worth trying out, but again, this is not your go-to look as shown. Tweak a little bit here and there, and you're good to go!

There's always more where that came from. Loving the pencil skirt but maybe wanting to find something sans stripes? What about the black top? Love it but a v-neck is not exactly what you're going for? No worries. It's all about having options and they're lined up right here, along these virtual shelves (updated weekly) for you to pick and chose from. Check out the StyleShaker Closet, category by fashion category below and see what other favorites are out there:

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The StyleShaker is all about inspiration. Shopping inspiration, fashion inspiration, Look inspiration, and now inspiration via quotes.

It's one of my favorite things to do, share quotes that resonate with me, with my friends, so I'm incorporating into a few posts, just, cause. Take a minute, take a breath, take a step back and just be for a second. Fill up that part of yourself. Like I said, my intention is to inspire so have at it, and by all means, get inspired:

Time for a quote close up:
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Get back to more inspiration when it comes to what to wear, how to wear it, and where to shop:

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Get My Look | What I Wear When I Want to Show My Flare

Setting the intention: With everything I do on this site, my intention is simply to inspire you. It always has been and it always will be. Should you crack a smile on top of this, then my day is made. On to the Get My Look post..

Have you ever seen the movie Office Space? Better yet, have you ever watched it on a loop over the course of a weekend after a crazy (read: not-so-fun) week at work? Right, well, I used to do it back in the day, so inevitably, a few lines find their way into my life and writing every now and then. In this case, the line is one Jennifer Aniston delivered when she showed her boss both her 'flair' and her finger.

This time around you won't see any bumper-sticker-quote-buttons lining the fabric of suspenders. Actually, let's hope you never see anything like that EVER on this site. Instead of flair, I'm talking flare. Right. Stay with me...Check out how to pull off a flare leg jean with a little layer of color courtesy of a peach suede jacket:

get my look, shop by number

Shop the Look:

 

Clients often freak out (technical term) when I mention a flared leg on denim. They're picturing a throw back to disco, when all I'm envisioning is a slight flare attached to a classic boot-cut. It's all about a little emphasis at the hem, and when worn with a heel, the look (again, I'm talking a relatively subtle flare here) is ridiculously elongating, let alone flattering because it creates a proportion that balances any silhouette out.

Speaking of silhouettes, the million dollar question that follows 'what to wear,' and then, 'how to wear it,' would have to be: "how do I wear this for my body type?" Logical enough question and yet, it's one of the toughest ones out there.

It's also an incremental piece of the fashion/wardrobe puzzle. You could have the most well-stocked closet out there, and sure, you have some inspiration on how to pull off the pieces, but if you don't know how to pull them off for your body type, then all you have is a full closet with nothing to wear. Sound familiar? I know, it's what makes my world go 'round here at the StyleShaker, and the basis for 100% of the services I offer to my fabulous clients.

Check out what body types can pull this look off flawlessly and how the rest of us can make a couple of key alterations to keep things moving in the right direction, stylistically speaking of course:

body type img with checks

Pears: you can do this but keep in mind just a couple of things. You want the hem of the underpinning (read: tank top, sorry about the retail lingo, after a decade you can take the girl out of retail but you can't take the retail out of the girl) to pop out from under the jacket. This will elongate your torso. Have it hit right at the hips. I repeat Pear ladies, DO NOT get tricky and think that allowing the tank to fall over your bum is a clever cover-up, it just accentuates your naturally beautiful silhouette in the area you don't want to. Also, lean towards a darker wash on the denim. And finally, make sure the hem goes past the ankle. If you have the hem falling too high you will crop the vertical eye-line and lose any extension. Never good.

Moving along...Rectangles, you're all set here. You're made for this and so many other looks so at this point, you should know you've got the universal body type (almost all the time). You're like the O negative of body types, the universal donor if you will. Hemoglobin talk aside, it's time to talk to my Hourglasses. This is a great option for you. Stick with all the notes I gave to the Pear shapes above. And finally, my Apples. I'm going to recommend going with a layering piece that has a bit less bulk. Maybe a more streamlined blazer to throw over in a pop color or cardigan with a peplum.

For petite women, if you don't have a heel nearby or you want to give your feet a break and wear flats, you can do this, but you'd need to go with a boot cut jean and lose the flare leg all together.

You can (and hopefully have) shopped the above look, but things sell out or you may just want to see more options when it comes to the categories above (i.e. a different tank, alternative to the peach jacket, and the list goes on). If it's options you want, then options you shall have. I aim to please. Shop the StyleShaker Closet by clicking below and see where the magic happens:

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I'm a broken record here, but to me it never hurts to repeat something I hold near and dear to the core of what I do on this site.

The StyleShaker is all about inspiration. Shopping inspiration, fashion inspiration, Look inspiration, and now quote inspiration.

It's one of my favorite things to do, share quotes that resonate with me, so I'm incorporating into a few posts, just, cause. Take a minute, take a breath, take a step back and just be for a second. Fill up that part of yourself. Like I said, my intention is to inspire so have at it, and by all means, get inspired:

Time for a quote close up:
quote

Get back to more inspiration when it comes to what to wear, how to wear it, and where to shop:

get inspired

 

Get My Look | What I Wear When I Can't Make Up My Mind

Three words, 8 steps: Get, my, look.

Matchy-matchy can be predictable-predictable.  We are all guilty of going back to that 20% of our closets that we keep on heavy rotation because, well, it's easy. I get it. But what about the rest of what's hanging in there, that 80% you look at every day and wonder, "should I finally wear this, wait, how should I wear this, wait, why did I buy this?"

To my personal shopping and styling clients reading this, sound familiar? Right. Well, technically speaking, it shouldn't be all that familiar any more. It should be a distant memory...

When I'm working with a client or speaking to a group of women at one of my Sip & Style Sessions, I find that things really start to click as soon as I begin pairing pieces they have with ideas they would have never dreamt of. Now, are these combination novel? Mind-blowing? Absolutely not. Actually, I love the fact that they are incredibly simple, approachable, affordable, and at the end of the day, real fashion for real women. It just takes a little inspiration and some helpful direction. Hence today's Get My Look post.

See how I pull things off when I'm feeling creative and want to go in a direction that's the exact opposite of matchy-matchy (translation: you will NOT find any color coordinated twin-sets in this one). If it strikes a chord in you, try it out using pieces from your own closet and mix and match away. If you have questions, it's really simple, just ask. For now, soak up the look-spiration:

get the look opp of matchy matchy that works

Get my look, well, shop my look below:

 

Pop quiz: What good is a look if you don't know how to wear it for your body type? It gets the inspiration flowing, yes, that's a bad thing. But loving a look and shopping according to a Style by Number situation above while not considering what works best for you silhouette can also leave you with a full closet and nothing to wear. Frustration, peace out. You're no longer welcome here. See which body types this look works for and where you may want to consider making a few fashion tweaks or moving on to the next look all together:

body type img

Rectangles and Hourglasses, this is all you. Apples, the reason you're not on this list is because there's too much volume on the top with the jacket. Swap that leather classic out for a more fitted cardigan (grey possibly, any neutral will do just not black) and you're all set. Pears, the pleats are why I left you out of this initial equation. Should you find a skirt sans pleats that is about midi-length (mid-calf) then feel free to partake!

Love what's going on in the look but now you want even more Shopping Options, or (more likely) something has sold out? Don't let that stop you. Shop the StyleShaker Closet, category by fashion category below and see where the magic happens:

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The StyleShaker is all about inspiration. Shopping inspiration, fashion inspiration, Look inspiration, and now inspiration via quotes.

It's one of my favorite things to do, share quotes that resonate with me, with my friends, so I'm incorporating into a few posts, just, cause. Take a minute, take a breath, take a step back and just be for a second. Fill up that part of yourself.

Clothing, what you wear on the outside, truly can make you feel good walking throughout your day. I not only believe this, I live it every day in my own life and I see it in each and every one of my clients. That's the outside though and it can only take you so far. It's important, but it's one piece of the puzzle. Now it's time to try something on, this time, on the inside. Check out the quote, see if it resonates, and hopefully it inspires you the way it did me. Inspiration, inside AND out.

quote

Get back to more inspiration when it comes to what to wear, how to wear it, and where to shop: 

get inspired

 

Get My Look | What I Wear When I'm Trying, But Not Too Hard

It's ironic how, when you try to look like you're not trying, sometimes the best ensembles float up to the fashion surface, you know? I mean, there are definitely those times when nothing is working and after an hour you leave a wake of destruction in the form of three-quarters of your closet's contents strewn across your room, bed, bathroom, etc. Frustrated from trying too hard and attempting to now throw in the towel, raise the white flag, and come up with some excuse to not make it out that night.

That's one end of the spectrum. On the other side there's the get-dressesd-on-a-loop approach. The rinse and repeat that leaves you wearing out that same old ten percent of what's hanging in your closet because that's what's easy.

The point I'm going for is smack dab in the middle of these two styling scenarios. It's the point when there's definitely effort, but you don't feel the need to go overboard. You want to look pulled together, but you still want to look and feel like you, i.e. comfortable and hopefully, confident. This is the kind of look that, in my mind, achieves just that. It's a happy medium of polished and distressed, classic and creative, yin and yang, peas and carrots, wait...

Bottom line: This is what I wear when I'm trying to pull something together, but not into trying all too hard.

If there's one thing I've learned after ten years in the fashion industry, and this is also a great metaphor for life, it's that, when you push too hard, try too aggressively to get that square peg into a round hole, you end up feeling less-than. More importantly, you end up missing the entire point.

Loosening your grip a bit allows for space, and when you make space, new ideas are able to move in and out freely. Cue: evolutiona and growth. Sometimes we try so hard to get a look just right (or anything really) that we're missing out on all of the remarkable goodies that are right there in front of us waiting to be seen. We're too busy trying to perfect, to fit into a trend that doesn't fit into our personal style.

All I'm saying is, go with what works for you. If you don't know what that is, contact me. For now, what's working for me is the combination of a classic silk blouse with a slightly distressed short that reads, "casual," but with the addition of a few key accessories works it's way into an evening situation. I love when that happens.

The accessories pull it together, show I care, while the foundation of a button-front top and denim shorts keeps me grounded, or in this case, not trying too hard, but rather, going with the flow:

what I wear when I want to try but not too hard

Shop the Look:
Love the look and now you're in the mood? To shop, not the other mood, but more power to you if that's the case. If you're looking for more picks like the ones above, I have the perfect spot for you. Check out the goods lining the virtual shelves of my very own 'happy place' known at the Closet. Everything in there is updated weekly with my top picks pulled from my top shopping sites.
See what all the fuss is about and step right up:

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See more where that comes from. Check out more product reviews, style tutorials, and takes on how to wear the latest trends in fashion, all right here (click the images below):

get inspired

Get My Look | What I Wear When I Don't Want to Ask Twice

Ouch, I know right? The title of this one seems a little on the Miranda (sounds like Anna) from 'Devil Wears Prada' side of things. A little demanding, a little, "I can't spare a minute for your follow-up question," and a little, well you get the picture. 

There are those days when you just want to be taken seriously and heard the first time around. For myself, those days usually begin with a feeling of, "I'm not sure how I'm going to make it through this one." They are few and far between thank goodness, but they still pop up. You know the ones I'm talking about. We've all been there. I call them my left-foot, right-foot days (my father coined this term for me, and it fits perfectly).

It was on those days when I would lean on my wardrobe to speak for me when maybe my voice (and the rest of my self) felt a little too weary to do it.

A look like the one below (or something similar that would include one of my favorite blazers from my growing, Imelda-like collection) fits the fashion bill perfectly. It's simple, yet effective style. The volume on this look isn't cranked up too loud. I find that when people speak softly and slowly, I tend to lean in to hear what they have to say. There's strength in subtlety, and in fashion, each piece in your ensemble is a word. It's just another language you're speaking whether you like it or not (I happen to love love love it). Choose your words. Figure out what message you want to send.

In this case, the message is strong, polished, pulled together, and means business (plus a little fun; hence the pop of red in the lip). This is the kind of look I would dream about wearing when I was a little girl. Some girls got googley-eyed over the floral and frilly side of fashion. I went weak in the knees when it came to the bold, Madonna circa the Express Yourself  side of the fashion coin (sans anatomically correct power-suit cut-outs, because that would just be awkward let alone completely inappropriate). 

Enough chit chat. This is what I wear (one iteration of it) when I don't want to ask twice:

what i wear when 1

The look summed up in a nutshell: Cinching to highlight the waist, a sky-high platform heel to elongate under those perfect black trousers, a key-hole silk blouse reminiscent of another favorite leading woman of mine, Katherine Hepburn (she probably wouldn't have gone for the key-hole cut out, but I'm sticking with the reference), and finally, a streak of saturated red smacked straight on a full lip, just cause.

It's the kind of look I would throw on and never think about again going throughout my day. The kind of look that would leave me walking a bit taller, maybe a bit stronger. It's the kind of look that screams "authority" (you can be authoritative AND kind in my book), fashion or otherwise. And finally, this is the kind of look that, when it passes you by, you make sure you're words are clear because you know the person wearing it isn't going to pause too long for anyone to repeat what they're trying to say. She's going places.

Shop the Look below:

 

 

That's just one look to get your fashion engines revving up a bit. It's all about being inspired AND (can't have one without the other) remaining open to your own personal style possibilities. Sometimes you just need to sit back, open your eyes, dream a little, and get out of your own way. *Moment of author/owner transparency: I say this to you and yet am still learning to take my own advice.

Keep the shopping momentum going strong with the perfect next step, the Cliffs Notes shopping experience known as the virtual Closet, lined with favorites from all of my top shopping sites out there. The work is done for you and updated weekly. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to click on a fashion category and see what else is out there that you may have never found had you not stopped right here. It's kismet people. Click away:

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See more where that comes from. Check out more product reviews, style tutorials, and takes on how to wear the latest trends in fashion, all right here (click the images below):

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Q&A | 2 Ways to Wear Joes Jeans Neon Orange Kitty Flats

We're always taking questions over here, we happen to go ga-ga when they flood in (send yours here). Today is no exception.

What to wear and how to wear it are besties in the world of personal style. One just isn't much without the other. In today's Q&A, the what-to-wear portion of the shopping equation is covered. Now it's all about how to wear it. More specifically, how to wear some on-trend Kitty Flats. The question, courtesy of Sara in VA.:

"I just bought the Joes Jeans Kitty Flats in Neon Orange. I'm obsessed, but I have no clue how to wear them! Can you help?"

1  Joes Jeans Neon Orange Kitty Flats

Answer: When it comes to pop colors, neon orange is right up there. If you're going to do it, go big right? Enter: the Joes Jeans Kitty Flats in question. Normally I pair super-saturated brights with a neutral background so it doesn't turn into sensory overload. That was the case with the first look. The name of the game was something polished, but not too polished, to wear for daytime.

With the second look, the concept of pairing the pop color flats with a neutral was tossed out as an option. Instead, Sara was craving something fun, different, and colorful without going overboard. The denim jacket tones things down a bit, and the taupe on the satchel helps create a clean balance so the silk crepe dress can do it's thing. The earrings? I neglected to mention part 'b' of Sara's question. She was in desperate need of an updated gold hoop. Enter something unique and original that only Boticca.com could serve up. Now I'm in love and ready to buy. It's a job hazard I'm willing to live with...

look 1

sources: Isabel Marant Mengjie Printed Top (www.lagarconne.com), Burberry London 'Smirdan' Cropped Skinny Jean (www.farfetch.com), MARC by Marc Jacobs Classic Q Francesca Tote (www.shopbop.com), Joes Jeans Kitty Flat in Neon Orange (www.amazon.com), Givenchy Vintage Stud Earrings (www.farfetch.com-sold out)

look 2

sources: Nieves Lavi Silk Crepe de Chine Mini Dress (www.theoutnet.com), Madewell The jean jacket (www.madewell.com), Liebeskind "Lotta" Taupe Leather Hobo (www.shirise.com-sold out), Joes Jeans Kitty Flat in Neon Orange (www.amazon.com), YooLa Extra Large Gold Hoop Earrings With 3 Pods (www.boticca.com)

soldoutsign for cat pgs

Keep the momentum going and shop the closet by clicking below:

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At The StyleShaker we believe 'when you FEEL good, you LOOK good.' We flipped the well-known saying on it's head for a reason. How do you capture that serotonin-filled feel-good moment everyone's always chasing? You create it. But you don't have to do it alone. The StyleShaker is here to get you inspired, excited, and in the end, help you to take your personal style levels you never thought possible. Aim higher, think bigger, walk into every day feeling confident and always, ALWAYS ask for help (a sign of strength, not weakness; took me awhile to figure that out) or know it's here if you need it.

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See more on what to wear, how to wear it, and soak up some inspiration that will help you redefine what you thought was possible.

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