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2017 Holiday Outfit Ideas

Finding the right outfit for every holiday event can be exhausting. This year, I’m trying to take some of the pressure off myself and keeping things simple. Pinterest is always a great place to find inspiration, and I have a board just for holiday outfits! While I don’t have too many plans this year (at least not yet), if something comes up I’ll be prepared!

Here are a few “themes” I put together to get you through the holidays with staples you probably already have (plus a few goodies you can pick up for fun)!

The Office Party: Basic Black + Sparkle

2017 Holiday Outfit Ideas

The office holiday party can be tricky. What you wear depends on a lot of factors: where the event is, who’s going to be there, and whether you’ll have time to change beforehand. I’m a huge fan of wearing black work staples with a little extra holiday “kick.” Any of these outfits will look polished during the work day, then transition easily to a party in the office, drinks after work, or a formal corporate shindig. I usually aim for “festive professional” for holiday office parties, and all three  options fit the bill!

Brunch: Channel Emmanuelle Alt

2017 Holiday Outfit Ideas

I never understood “dressing up” for brunch with friends, so I suggest taking a cue from my casual, “I-don’t-give-a-fuck” Parisian muse, Emmanuelle Alt. Grab your favorite worn-in jeans, a neutral crewneck sweater, black ankle boots, and top it off with a classic peacoat or blazer. You’ll look chic AF while also giving off that “I didn’t try at all” vibe. If you really want to go a little “extra,” pile on the delicate gold jewelry or a rock brighter colored sweater…or both!

The Family Event: Fair Isle Sweater + Comfy Jeans

2017 Holiday Outfit Ideas

My family keeps things pretty casual for the holidays, and I also eat a TON during our Christmas get-togethers, so comfort is key. I never got into the whole “ugly sweater” craze because I’m from the Midwest where people still wear them un-ironically (and don’t want people to think I actually like wearing those tacky things). Instead, my idea holiday outfit is a fair isle sweater, comfy jeans (to accommodate for all the fudge I plan to eat), and some comfy shoes/boots. If your family get-togethers involve snowball fights with your sister’s crazy kids, a racist uncle or two, and lots of wine, this outfit will get you through.

New Year’s Eve: Add A Sequin Jacket

2017 Holiday Outfit Ideas

We almost never go out for New Year’s Eve, which is too bad because I have the perfect outfit that fits into almost any party scenario – take jeans and your favorite band tee, throw on a pair of colorful heels, then add a sequin jacket! It’s an unexpected, sparkly twist that requires almost no added effort. Sequin jackets look best with minimal makeup, slightly messy hair, and few accessories. Basically, you can just throw on the jacket and BOOM – instant rocker girl vibes!

If you want to see more outfit inspiration (or want to know more about each look), check out my “2017 Holiday Outfit Ideas” Pinterest board!

Fall Fashion Trends: Love/Hate

I’m sure I’ve said it a million times this month, but fall is coming. Today, I thought I’d round up my favorite fall trends for this year. While doing this, I also found a few trends I think we should all pass on this year. So for your amusement or inspiration, here are some trends I loved and hated for this fall.

fall fashion trends love hate

Sources: Photo 1 / Photo 2 / Photo 3 / Photo 4 / Photo 5

Trends I Love:

Navy-inspired Overcoats

Every French woman out there is probably groaning right now because they’ve known that Navy-inspired coats have been cool forever. So get out your old navy peacoat and freshen it up with some gold buttons. That’s what I’m doing, if I ever get around to it!

Pumpkin-spice Orange

Orange is always a big fall color. This year is no exception. Get out your pumpkin-hued clothes and pair them up with any of the other 4 trends here, or go monochromatic for a glamorous effect.

Tartan Plaids

Plaid is also a traditional fall staple, but this year think outside the flannel shirt too. Tartan plaids were huge this year at all the fashion weeks, from coats to skirts to dresses. You can still rock the flannel shirts too…but maybe grab a midi skirt for days when you want to look more fashion than basic bitch.

Turtlenecks Under Dresses

Leandra Medine has been telling us for years to wear turtlenecks under our dresses – and we’re finally listening. It’s a great way to transition your summer dresses to fall. I like the look of a turtleneck that matches the dress, but hey, the whole point of this is you can mix it up however you want. Turtlenecks are cheap as shit (try Uniqlo), which means you can find one to go with every dress you own.

Leopard Print

I’m not sure leopard print ever went away. Whatever, it’s back and ready for fall. Don’t be afraid to mix it with other prints (like the photo above) or treat it like the neutral it is (thanks Jenna Lyons).

Okay…on to the things we should leave to a Kardashian or tweenster…. fall fashion trends love hate

Sources: Photo 1 / Photo 2 / Photo 3 / Photo 4 / Photo 5

Trends I Hate:

Tailored Sportswear

I’m not a fan of the whole “sportswear as fashion” thing, mostly because it can fail so easily. This look seems perfect if you’re 16 and rocking abs – not so much if you’re over 30. Too much shiny fabric and puffy coats just remind me of Ali G, and if you go the other direction, you just look like you’re trying to rock your gym clothes in the real world. Not into it.

The 80s

I can’t. I just can’t. Leave the gold lame and power shoulders in the 1980s where they belong.

Chokers

This trend pisses me off because it hits too close to my childhood, and that means I’m old. Chokers were all the rage when I was in high school, and I’m not ready for them to come back. That, and were chokers ever comfortable? Nope.

Renaissance/Romantic

Thanks to Downton Abbey, Game of Thrones, and pick your Tudor-era television shows, this look is a thing now. I’ve never understood the Ren-Faire look outside of, well, a Renaissance Faire. I get that this trend showed up at more couture shows than ready-to-wear, so it’s not supposed to be realistic (though this photo did come from a RTW line…which is…odd). Either way, I’m not liking this one. Unless you’re into LARP-ing, then dive right in.

Dusty Pink & Yellow

I’m convinced this “trendy” color combo happened because designers got their Fall and Spring lines mixed up. Who the hell wants to wear their Easter best in October? I’d be fine if this was mustard yellow and a deep-red wine color combo, but nope – it’s not. I don’t like the combination even for spring, so it’s a no for me.

Well there you go – my yearly assessment of what I’ll be wearing, buying, and ignoring for fall 2016!

Spring 2016 Fashion Trends

Spring 2016 Fashion Trends

Spring is finally here, which means it’s time to pack up the bulky fisherman knits (okay, maybe leave out a couple) and bring in some freshness to our closets! For some reason, this spring I’m more inspired to update my wardrobe – probably because spring and summer here kind of blend together, so I’m killing two birds with one shopping trip!

Anyway, here are some spring fashion trends that I’m looking forward to adding into my closet this season, and some styling ideas thanks to my Pinterest feed!

Spring 2016 Fashion Trends

Trend #1: Marled Knit Sweaters

I have a ton of lightweight sweaters, but I’d love to add a cozier one to the mix for chilly spring days and summer nights. Marled knit sweaters are so soft and cozy, which makes them perfect to throw on with jeans and nice flats in the spring, and toss on with shorts and sandals in the summer.

Spring 2016 Fashion Trends

Trend #2: Orange

Sure, we all wear a ton of orange in the fall (due to Pumpkin Spice Fever, I assume). However, orange is such a universally flattering color that we really can rock it all year! To keep it more spring/summer ready than fall, keep the orange bright and cheery! I love that it works well with denim and other neutrals, and bright orange accessories add a nice pop to any outfit. I don’t look good wearing yellow unless I have a serious tan, but I can pull off orange any day!

Spring 2016 Fashion Trends

Trend #3: Soft Pinks

Soft pinks are clearly a nod to one of the Pantone colors of the year, but I have to say they should be a staple in our wardrobes for years to come. I’m not usually a fan of pink, but I love the subtly feminine twist this can have on both casual and work outfits. It’s a great change-up from the white tee, and matches damn near anything in your closet. Consider it your new neutral!

Spring 2016 Fashion Trends

Trend #4: White Shirt (with a twist)

White blouses have existed since the beginning of time – and this year is no exception. Spring is calling for crisp, white shirts with unique details. I have a feeling the basic white tee is going to fall out of fashion if this trend catches on. I love seeing white blouses with unique details that flatter almost any body type. As a woman who struggles to fit into blouses (thanks to my button-popping DD boobs), I love that this look is structured but not tight-fitted. For the first time in years, I might actually find a white shirt to keep for years to come!

Spring 2016 Fashion Trends

Trend #5: Flats

Flats are making a major comeback this year, in new colors, fabrics, patterns, and designs. I blame (and praise) Olivia Palermo for inspiring us all to leave the heels for date night, and elevate our everyday outfits with some seriously amazing flats. Your feet will thank you!

For more spring fashion inspiration, head on over to my Pinterest page to see more!

Fall Nail Polish Update

Fall Nail Polish Update

In addition to needing a wardrobe update, my nail polish collection needed a bit of a fall refresher. I’ve been a fan of Revlon’s nail polishes lately, and they are great at keeping things on trend each season!

They’re the brand I go to when I want to find a dupe for OPI, Essie, or other pricier polishes – or when I want to try out a new trend without spending a lot. The formulas are great, they dry quickly, and come in dozens of amazing colors!

Fall Nail Polish UpdateFrom left to right: Vixen, Sultry, Sophisticated, Elegant

I picked up Vixen mainly because my maroon OPI polish was almost gone and had started drying out. This color is almost an exact match, and looks amazing on my toes!

Sultry was a shade I chose because I kept seeing this sparkly, deep blue in every September fashion magazine this year – and I wanted to give it a try without paying a lot, in case I don’t like it. I had a similar version of this from Ulta years ago and hated it (it read more purple than blue), so I can’t wait to see if this one is better!

Sophisticated has been my favorite so far – it’s the perfect light grey, with just a hint of lavender. If you like Essie’s neutral grey polishes, this one is a great substitute! I just need a sweater to match….

Finally, Elegant looks like the perfect neutral for fall, and I think will look great both with what little tan I have left, and once I start getting a bit paler (which is happening very soon). I haven’t tried it yet, but I probably will once I get over wearing the grey polish so much!

So, if you’re looking for the latest nail trends for fall, definitely check out Revlon’s nail polish collections – they’re only $4-5 each, and come in so many colors, it’ll be hard to choose just a few!

Vogue September Issue: 5 Trends to Buy Now!

Vogue September Issue

 

This year, I had the opportunity to get Vogue’s September issue digitally, thanks to my local library. The experience of swiping through went a lot faster than if I had leafed through a physical copy, but I also found I paid more attention. I’ve never looked to the ads before, but having them in a digital format for some reason made me take notice. I also spent more time reading the articles this year, though I think that might just be because I found them more interesting than in years past.

If you’re not the kind of person who enjoys leafing through 800+ pages of fashion, I decided to help you out by giving you a cliffsnotes (and yes, I spelled that right) version to help guide you to a fashion savvy fall!

Thrift stores are your friend!

The 1970s and 1990s played a huge role in much of this year’s issue, so get ready for some heavy thrifting this year if you don’t want to pay couture prices. Trust me, this year you can be trendy and on budget!

Floor length, long-sleeved, high-necked prairie dresses were in almost every ad and feature story. Chloe, Lanvin, and Gucci featured dresses that would make Stevie Nicks gush. The floral prints were small, and the color palette was autumn-ready (think burnt oranges, browns, deep purples, and black). There were a few shorter, 90s versions of this, but for the most part keep things pretty conservative to stay on trend this year. I thought the dresses by Burberry, Dolce & Gabbana, and Celine that featured larger floral patterns (think grandma’s couch) were also a nice way to go the hippie vibe while keeping it chic.

If you managed to save your furry Muppet-esque coats from college, now would be the time to give them a good brushing and break them out! Faux fur coats were featured alongside flowing blouses, boot-cut and bell-bottomed jeans, and chunky boots. Think more Margot Tenenbaum than Kurt Cobain.

Other things to hunt down in the thrift shop this year: neck scarves (if Leandra Medine hasn’t stolen them all yet), structured handbags, chunky boots, wide leg jeans, fisherman knit sweaters, and bowtie blouses

Watch The Royal Tenenbaums to figure out what colors to rock this fall!

Look no further than Prada for the color palette this season. They, among others, featured mustard yellows, turquoise blues, soft pinks, forest greens, and lots and lots of tweed. Many of the designers for fall went with colors that would blend in perfectly with the Tenenbaum family. The pinks, purples, blues, and reds are more saturated than years past, and balanced nicely with light brown suede or leather to keep things from getting too bright and cheery. Also, keep the textures classic – tweed, corduroy, wool, leather, and denim to keep from it looking like a 90s ripoff of a 70s outfit.

Also, if you’re over 30, stop bowing down to the altar of Margot Tenenbaum (you’re too old for polo shirt dresses, trust me) and really check out Etheline Tenenbaum’s wardrobe for inspiration. Her structured pieces in gorgeous colors are far more on trend this year- the pink coat she wears throughout the movie is perfect for this fall!

The white button down is cool again…and anything but basic!

For a long time, the white button down was the Basic B’s most basic of pieces – and don’t worry, it still is if that’s what you like. However, if you’re looking to up your game this year, go with a white button down that isn’t so simple. Try new cuts, and definitely go for more flowing fabrics. It should read slightly more blouse-y than school uniform. Undo more buttons, let your black bra shine through, but keep the sleeves long and buttoned tight at the wrist!

While we’re on the topic of basic white pieces, don’t forget to pick up a fisherman knit sweater if you somehow didn’t last year. They’re still very popular, and work well with this year’s trends!

Get your inner goth on this fall, and you’ll be set for winter too!

I didn’t forget the goths of the 90s, I promise, and neither did the September issue! Dolce & Gabbana, Alexander McQueen, Alberta Ferretti, and Proenza Schouler were definitely reppin’ for the goth girls this year. Think lots of structured black coats, black Victorian-era lace, and dark embroidery. Of course, we can count on people like Chanel to bring the blacks and greys, but this year it seems like a lot of other designers are enjoying the ease and subversiveness of an all-black outfit. I think this trend will make for a great transition from fall to winter, where we’ll see a lot more black than we have in recent years.

Pack up the bucket bags for now!

Structured bags are where it’s at this year. I think I only saw one bucket bag in the 800+ pages this year, and even the bags that had that 70s fringe were more structured than slouchy. I’ve never been a fan of slouchy handbags, so I’m glad to bid them good riddance for now!

If you get out early, you should have no problem finding some great thrift store bags that fit the bill – or you could spring for a new one that I guarantee you’ll use for years to come. They were in all shapes and sizes this year, so whether you want to go with a doctor’s bag or a cross-body mini, it’ll work!

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Of course, this isn’t a comprehensive list of what I saw in Vogue’s September issue this year, but they were the trends I saw popping up again and again! There were plenty of designers who keep things the same from year to year (Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Chanel, etc.), and you can still count on the 60’s London rocker/mod trend to be around for a while. But Vogue is all about the changes in season, and this resurgence of 70s and 90s fashion is a big change from what I’ve seen recently.

So get out there and start digging around your neighborhood thrift store before you head to the department stores – you might be surprised at how much you will find…and save!

 

Hair Color by Sign?

Hair Color by Sign?

 

Since many of us enjoy reading horoscopes (or Repell-o-Scopes, thanks to Man Repeller), when I found out  Madison Reed was offering people their very own Hair-o-Scope, I was curious.

Of course, I’m not someone who puts much into horoscopes, but I think they’re fun to read. I also wanted to know if my recent choice to go blonde-ish was a good one (I’m still on the fence about it). They hit the nail on the head about my wanting to change up my color a lot – I’m already considering heading back to brown, or reddish brown (if I can get away with it without my redheaded husband noticing…he’s very against my going red…sigh).

Madison Reed is a mail-order hair color service that is hoping to change the way we see and treat our hair. Their products are cruelty-free and free of ammonia, resorcinol, PPD, and added parabens, which equates to healthier hair, better color, and no horrible smell. Partners and roommates the world over should enjoy that last part!

They also offer consultation services, from their Color Advisor quiz to speaking with a professional colorist, to ensure that you’ll love the color they send. After you take the quiz or talk to a colorist, you can choose which color you want, and decide whether you want one kit ($24.95 each), or a subscription to have the color sent to you on a regular basis (every 2-12 weeks at $19.95 each).

If $25 seems like a lot for an at-home hair kit, you should check out what each one comes with – seriously, they’ve thought of almost everything. My biggest pet peeve with dying my hair at home is having to put the dirty gloves back on to rinse off the dye in the shower – which is why their kit comes with 2 pairs! They also include things like barrier cream, a cleansing cloth, and protective cap – seriously, they left no stone unturned.

After spending a lot of time on their site, it seems like a great service at an amazing price. I’ve seen other mail-order services that cost a lot more, and don’t offer the one-on-one consultations (unless you’re paying for the premium service or something). I also really like that you can subscribe at whatever rate you want, which is great if you dye your hair frequently…or not so much.

So if you’re tired of paying out the nose for professional color, or hate picking between the 4 options you have at the store, definitely check out Madison Reed. You can also follow them on Twitter at @madisonreedllb if you want more updates on what they’re up to!

Summer Nail Polish

Summer Nail PolishOne thing I get excited for in the summer months is getting to branch out with nail color. Most of the year, I stick with plain neutrals or classic reds – but not in the summer! I think this happens because I wear brighter colors in the summer, and it’s the only time of year where my toes are on display, which means more valuable real estate to paint!

I chose the four that I find myself wearing most during the summer, and all of them work just as well on fingers as they do toes. I’ve also branched out in brands lately, too, since you can find some great colors without paying top dollar for them. I’ve been known to grab a $12 OPI nail lacquer and walk around the store trying to find a cheaper version!

Oh, and you can wear any combination of these four on your fingers or toes, which takes a lot of the guesswork out of the whole “do they match” argument. Yes, they all “match.” Wear one on your fingers, and another on your toes – you can’t really go wrong.

Here are my favorites for summer!

Summer Nail Polish

Revlon Nail Enamel in Enchanting

I bought this one recently while on the hunt for a good lavender shade. This shade doesn’t go on evenly, so it definitely takes 2-3 solid coats to fully cover. However, it is a great bluish purple with just a tiny hint of sparkle, which looks great with a tan!

OPI Nail Lacquer in My Chihuahua Bites!

It was really hard to get a good photo of this one, so pretend it’s a bit more watermelon pink than bright orange! I’ve been a die hard OPI fan for years, and this shade is a great deviation from my usual reds and oranges when I’m looking to switch things up for summer.

Essie Nail Color in Turquoise & Caicos

While I’ve never been a huge fan of Essie polishes, I took a chance on this one last summer because everyone online was raving about it. It’s a great shade for toes, especially if you have darker skin or a good tan. My main problem with Essie polishes is that they go on uneven, but this one didn’t at all, so I’ve kept it in the rotation.

Maybelline Color Show in Sapphire Siren

I raved about the Color Show collection on my old blog, and I still am! I love these polishes because they’re usually in the $2-$4 price range, and they dry very quickly – which is perfect when you’d rather spend your evenings with friends than waiting on your nails to dry! In the summer, I like going with navy as an alternative to the black and grey polishes I wear the rest of the year. It’s dark, but not too gothic for summer.