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:

look

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.

Split Screen | 1 J. Crew Bateau Neck Sweater, 2 Ways to Wear It

The split screen is a simple, style equation: 1 J.Crew Bateau neck sweater, 2 ways to wear it. Easy, peasy.

I had to hold myself back on this one, go figure, the editor is editing. I could easily work this classic sweater, with it's ridiculously (universally) flattering neckline and sophisticated silhouette, into countless looks. It's all about seeing the potential in one piece and making it work for you, or go the extra fashion mile if you will. You just need a little inspiration to warm things up and start to see four looks where you only saw one before all this.

For now, I'm keeping it short and sweet with two looks that range from wear-to-work, to something a bit more casual for day. Let's get started:

look1_header

Like I said, one sweater, two ways to wear it. First up, look number one, a simple daytime combo that keeps a clean foundation giving the pink-drenched 3.1 Phillip Lim satchel all of the focus, as if anything within a three foot radius could steal it's thunder. Pop of pink aside, the best part about this ensemble is that it can go from day to evening with a simple shoe swap. Throw the quilted leather flats into the satchel, slip on some heels, and you're ready for cocktails.

source: 1. J. Crew Collection Cashmere Bateau Sweater (www.jcrew.com), 2. J Brand Denim 811 Mid-Rise Skinny Jeans (www.matchesfashion.com), 3. Vince Camuto Fawna Flat (www.shoptheshoebox.com), 4. Campbell Knuckle Floating Ring (www.shopbop.com), 4. 3.1 Phillip Lim Pashli Satchel (www.barneys.com

 

look2_header

Super-chic & perfectly polished. Round two on ways to wear this sweater falls in fashion line with a classic work look. Ok fine, this is what I would call a work look having spent the last decade in the fashion industry. So sure, for some this may seem slightly warped, but believe me, if you're looking at this and thinking, "oh my god I love this, but there's no way I could pull that off, whoa, those heels are ridiculous," think again (oh, and trust me, you can find a lower pump out there, start here). There's no reason why you can't bend outside of your personal style comfort zone and have a little fun amidst the craziness of your day, actually I encourage it. After all, the Split Screen is all about playing with your clothes and getting inspired.

source: 1. J. Crew Collection Cashmere Bateau Sweater (www.jcrew.com), 2. Marc By Marc Jacobs Jackie Camel Mélange Wool/Cashmere Pencil Skirt (www.stylebop.com),  3. Charlotte Olympia Natalia Lace-Up Ankle Bootie (www.neimanmarcus.com), 4. Chloe Alice Springs Large Handbag In Husky White (www.forwardforward.com), 5. Kendra Scott Della Earring  (www.zappos.com)

One Split Screen down, and there's still plenty where that came from. See more on what to wear, how to wear it, and where to shop.

The Shopping List | From a Burberry Bag to Go Ga-Ga to a New Name in Jewelry OOAKjewelz (you will love), It's All Here

I basically couldn't contain myself with this round of the top 10 picks that made today's shopping list. I already sent a couple of sneak peeks out to some loyal fashion friends because I couldn't keep it to myself. I share what I love and nothing really manages to get in the way, even my posting schedule...

Sneaky shopping shares aside, here's the final shopping list, lined up for your viewing (and shopping) pleasure. It all starts with a new find in the land of handbags from Costella, runs through a few other hand-picked favorites from Linda Farrow to Topshop, and Alexander Wang to Burberry (I admit, I got a little designer heavy, but maintained a bit of balance with the addition of some amazing new names added into the mix, thank you very much). Let's begin at number 1, naturally...

1.

Bags are a toughie for me. I spent a couple of years working (slaving would be the more melodramatic term) away in the designer handbags office at Neiman Marcus, so I know quality, but my sense of what's acceptable on price point is completely warped. The bottom line for me is, a bag, a great bag (and you shouldn't be buying any other kind) is most definitely worth the investment. Am I throwing down $1500 for some of the labels out there? Not at the moment, that's what sample sales and designer dashes are for. But will I spend up to $500 for the right bag ('right' equates to original design, i.e. no label screaming for me, doesn't mean a thing if the bag looks like nothing special, AND, quality that will have me wearing it for years)? Yes. That said, it's always nice to find something for less...

Speaking of, check out a bag from a newer name (to me) with a great look. The details are not overdone, but they give the bag some personality taking it from an 'everyday basic,' and adding a little oomph which I'm always a fan of:

2.

Next up on the shopping list, another 'newbie' designer name (again, new to me) I found on Etsy and fell in love with. I'm a massive fan of taking basics, i.e. your favorite crewneck tee and skinny jeans, and throwing in a statement piece like the below vintage necklace, to make things a bit more interesting. It's amazing how one great piece of jewelry can transform an entire look.

3.

This pencil skirt, a classic piece everyone should have in their wardrobe (hop to it if you're missing it; don't just think workday chic, pair this with a tank and you have something for evening to mix and match outside of your L.B.D), is taken to another level by Boy. By Band of Outsiders. There's rubber in this striped skirt, yep, rubber. It's all in the details, and I'm fascinated. The color combinations here are perfection and actually work well back to a few options that you probably have hanging in your closet. You'd be surprised...

4.

5.

6.

I wear my printed blouses to death, SO, I usually tend to go towards a blend when it comes to fabric. Silk is just not my friend, and I'm over the whole dry cleaning situation (when I can avoid it), so, I am all about the poly-blend print below from W118 By Walter. Reds are a favorite of mine, so that doesn't hurt either. Wear this over denim, a pencil skirt, tucked into a skinny pant, or wide-leg trouser for that matter. Seriously, you wouldn't necessarily expect such a bold print to offer up so many styling options, but it really fits into almost any style situation you can throw at it.

7.

8.

I'll tell you what I want to do with this cardigan. Throw it on over a basic white tank paired back to some slouchy boyfriend jeans (rolled up),  and hit the beach early in the morning when there's a chill in the air. That's it, just walk and be in this cozy cardi, wrapped up and taking in the scenery. There's a story (real or fictional) behind every piece, just one more reason to love fashion.

9.

10.

Ok, fine, I can't even take it. I'm dying over this bag. The straw, the leather details, the trifecta of colors that only Burberry can pull off like this, I'm literally swooning, can you tell? This, is a bag. Awhile back, when I was in the buying offices, it's what we called the 'It Bag,' a term which was worn out by the end of 2006, and yet can still be found in several editorial publications (and now here, whoopsie). The only missing link would be that this bag doesn't have a name, or at least, I can't find it and I'm not into digging for the name, it's about the bag. That said, most 'It-Bags,' have a name, they become personified (not creepy at all) such as, 'Paddington,' or, 'Muse,' or even better, 'Coco Cabas.' Yep, I'm bringing it back...

So, I shall fix this style quandary, I'm sure Christopher Bailey will appreciate the resourcefulness. I'll call it the 'Brittany,' tote, which is another way of saying it's mine. And yes, my capacity for subtlety is surpassed only by my brilliant talent with the written word, WHICH, could only surpassed by my unwavering sense of humility, naturally.

Mine all mine.

source: 1. Costella Daniella Onyx Leather Bag (www.boticca.com), 2. OOAKjewelz Vintage Rhinestone Statement Necklace (www.etsy.com), 3. Boy. By Band Of Outsiders Striped 4. Cotton & Rubber Blend Pencil Skirt (www.net-a-porter.com), 5. Linda Farrow Luxe D-Frame Sunglasses (www.net-a-porter.com), 6. Alexander Wang Kamila Bootie (www.alexanderwang.com), 7. W118 By Walter Baker Marisa Chiffon Blouse (www.theutnet.com), 8. Forever 21 Platform Leopard Booties (www.forever21.com), 9. Brochu Walker Toggle Cashmere Cardigan (www.farfetch.com), Diamond Cut Swing Earrings (www.us.topshop.com), 10. Burberry Prorsum Three-Tone Strap Tote (www.farfetch.com

And there you have it. Another top 10 feast of fashion for the eyes. But it never ends with ten, actually, it doesn't begin with ten either. The editing that goes on is endless, and for those favorites that don't make it onto the hit list, like today's, there's always the StyleShaker Closet shelves where they receive their rightful shopping cameo (while still in stock of course):

Here's a moment to take for yourself, or just to indulge me and my love of sharing quotes that resonate  (in hopes that they hit home with you as well). Today it's coming from Bill Cosby:

There's always something to be afraid of, and nine times out of ten, it doesn't exist, it's literally all created in your mind. So in a sense, (deep thoughts for a fashion post, I know) you could very well be afraid of something that's not even there to be afraid of. Actually, that's exactly where  most of my fears reside. They're usually based on nothing real, which is pretty hilarious when you think about it.

I held on to a life that brought me routine, consistently, for days on end. Some people call this 'security.' I did this because I was afraid of leaving, afraid of the unknown, afraid of no longer being associated with a name in the industry that held plenty of well-deserved weight. I stayed because I was afraid of leaving. I saw what could happen that would be a potential 'negative' outcome (totally unsubstantiated of course), as opposed to realizing the good things that could (and have) come from such a change.

So, I jumped, I went for what I want. Actually, I'm currently in the midst of going for what I want, and yes, it's scary but only when I look at the 'what if's,' and guess what, those, aren't real. What's real is this, writing this to you, right now, and loving the hell out of it.

I guess I wanted this more than I feared walking away from what I 'should' be. Know what I'm saying?

I quit my 'job,' to pursue a dream, and guess what, I didn't die, life didn't end, and I'm not spending my days curled up in the fetal position muttering, "what have I done," in-between tear-filled sob-lets (the little sniffley ones that make one completely unable to form a complete sentence; #flashbacktobeingfiveyearsold).

I've actually never felt more alive. I wish the same feeling, oh and the Burberry Prorsum bag (of course), for all of you.

See more when it comes to what to wear, how to wear it, and where to shop for it.