Dressing Slimmer

The next best thing to working out and eating right is finding figure flattering clothes that make you appear slimmer without any effort. I have found some foolproof styles that work every time for any body type and occasion. The first is the cardigan. Cardigans slenderize with fine textured knits and skim trouble spots, but still show your shape. You can highlight the thinnest part of your torso with a single strategically placed button, or choose a V-neck with ribbing where you want attention. Trousers with a stretchy, supportive fabric glide over jiggly areas with foolproof fit will flatter every figure. You can appear slimmer in seconds with these stealth slenderizers. High-waisted skirts are another diversionary dynamo. They seem to raise the waist, make you look leggier, and hit at the narrowest part of the rib cage to emphasize curves. Topping off your look with a fitted blazer is my favorite slimming tip. A well fitting blazer can not only magically make you look super put together, but it it can also have a slimming effect. Look for a blazer that comes in slightly at the waist and hits just below the hip. The right fit is the most important, so do not be afraid to take yours to a tailor to get it sized just right all over. Perfect with trousers, skirts, and even jeans. Wearing a lighter colored blouse or T-shirt underneath can also make you waist look smaller — it’s magic!

Style Rules ~ Break Them or Not?

Are some style “rules” made to be broken…yes! Styles change, rules change, trends change…change is good. So here are some styles “rules” below, to break or not to break?

Rule 1. Blue and green should never worn together. Well I break this one all the time. Cool greens with cool blues, warm greens with warm blues look gorgeous and are a common color scheme found in nature. This is a definite must break.
Rule 2. Red heads should never wear red or pink – everyone can wear a shade of pink or red, most redheads look better in warmer reds and pinks, so go ahead and wear these colors.
Rule 3. Never wear white or black to a wedding – this is one I would break, but first I would check with the bride to find out what is acceptable at her wedding. I have been to weddings where the bride wore green and she was more than happy for others to wear white or black. If the bride is wearing white, then never wear white. Some brides are happy for guests to wear black, especially for an evening wedding.
Rule 4. While we are on the subject of white – never wear white after Labor Day. I’m actually not a fan of white shoes any time of the year. Nude or camel shoes are so much more stylish. As far as white clothes go, winter white is so gorgeous – why limit what you want to wear with strange outdated rules?
Rule 5. Never wear hosiery with open toed shoes. This is a rule you should stick to. You can get tights that stop at the ball of your foot to allow for open toed shoes.
Rule 6. No bright colors at funerals. I would suggest you stick with darker, more somber colors, unless of course that bright colors were requested by the departed.
Rule 7. Always match shoes and handbags. This is a must break rule! They can be the same color, but should not look like they came as a set. But why not team your red shoes with a black handbag, or your brown shoes with your burgundy handbag? There are just so many options, why be limited?
Rule 8. Do not mix gold and silver jewelry. When mixing metals, do not go 50/50, look at an 80/20 mix instead. There are many beautiful pieces that mix gold and silver in the one piece, use one of these to then mix other single color metals into your outfit.
Rule 9. If a garment has belt loops, and you can see them, wear a belt. I agree with this one. I often remove belt loops off clothing that I do not want to wear a belt with, and for garments like jeans, I wear my tops over the top so you do not see the loops. But if you can see them, wear a belt.

Some rules you can forget and do what you like, such as do not wear long dangly earrings with glasses – who made this one up? Or you cannot mix prints – oh yes you can – and you should! My favorite style rules to break is the where that says plus size women should wear long tops and baggy clothing. Form fitting clothes are more flattering and slimming. Often those long baggy tops are actually highlighting rather than hiding.

How to Wear Ankle Boots

It took me a while to get on board with the ankle boot trend, mostly because I felt like they made women’s feet look chunky, and cut off the leg line. Who knows what happened, but I could no longer resist them? Now I own a couple of pairs of them in different colors. Along the way I have discovered a few ways to wear them so they are flattering. There are so many fun ones out there: wedge, heel, flat, laced, or buckled. And they are a big trend again this fall — so you really should own a pair. Check out the pictures below. There are ten great ways to wear your booties. And remember, you do not need these exact pairs to create great outfits — use these outfits as inspiration to wear your ankle boots well, no matter what style they are!
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Your Opinion Matters

I am always looking for new topics, suggestions and questions you may have about fashion. What would you like to see more of in the future? Feel free to comment below if you would like to see a topic not listed.

Rockin’ Leather Pants

There is no doubt about it, leather pants are in stores and on celebs this season, making them a must try look. Leather pants give off that edgy vibe and when paired with the right top, can make you stand out. Think leather pants are not for you? Think again. I know the word leather can send a lot of ladies running, filled with thoughts of grungy 80s hair bands. Leather can sometimes make us feel like we have to be super thin to sport the look. And for many animal friendly fashionistas, leather is just a no-no. Ladies, I hear ya. But leather pants can be worn successfully with a few tips in mind.

1. Go faux: Real leather is well, real leather. That means it is pricy, which may not be in your budget. Faux leather pants look like the real deal, are more affordable and are a great option for my animal-lovin’ friends.
2. Wear color: Leather pants need not be “I’m in a rock band” black to look cool. Ditch the dark and make your style pop with a dose of color. Black is so expected….so change it up.
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3. Resist the leather has to be tight idea: Tight leather pants may have been the thing for 80′s hair bands, but in the real world, most ladies are not about to step out like they are in a Whitesnake video. Too tight leather pants, or anything for that matter, is uncomfortable and looks stupid. Find a pair that fits right for your body and you will be one stylin’ fashionista.
4. Break things up: Just because you found the perfect pair of leather pants does not mean you have to show your excitement with matching leather tops and leather accessories. You are heading out for a night out, not attending a biker rally. Instead of getting into head to toe leather mode, temper your shiny legs with a loose cotton sweater or go for a lacy feminine top for contrast.
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5. Ease into it: If the idea of leather pants intrigues you, but full leather from hip to ankle is too much, break into it slowly. Try wearing pants with leather on the front leg only or head out in ones with a side stripe of leather.

Mixing High End & Low End

One of the main reasons I started this fashion blog was to combat the belief that in order to be fashionable and stylish, you had to spend a lot of money.  Not true.  Mixing high end fashion and low end fashion takes some practice, but you can look super polished on a budget.  You can find name brands for less at stores like DSW, Marshalls, TJMaxx and thrift stores, that are higher quality than inexpensive brands at Target or Payless, but often cost the same.  Also, get acquainted with the quality of fabrics, prints, trim, finishings, cut, and the silhouette of designer clothing and shoes. This helps you find a low that is a reasonable facsimile of a high. Things like buttons can make or break an item and immediately give it away as low end, as well as an improper fit. If you pick the right kind of low end item, it can look even better with high end accessories. Splurge on one great bag and one great pair of shoes every season. The bag does not have to be black or brown. It could be red, blue or green but goes with everything. The shoes should be comfortable, classic but current, should flatter your foot and leg and be a heel height you can tolerate.  Another tip is to be aware of knockoffs. Knockoffs are usually tacky and give themselves away as low end. Be aware of what is a knockoff, because there is so much of it out there. Remember items that are higher quality can be worn for years.  Ultimately they cost less, because you do not have to pay to replace them over and over again.  And last but not least is fit. You can pull of a inexpensive dress if the fit is phenomenal (tailoring might be a good idea in this case). You can also make an expensive dress look cheap if the fit is not right. So pay close attention to fit, and you will be on your way to looking fabulous on a budget in no time.

The Importance of a Full Length Mirror

Do you know what consistently surprises me? So many of my stylish, enthusiastic, creative friends lack one of the most important tools in a stylish woman’s arsenal: A full length mirror.  Most of them have mirrors in their bathrooms or atop their dressers that show everything from the hips upward. But if you want to see how your footwear impacts your outfit, if you want to see how skirt length works on your leg line, if you want to make sure your tights really work with your scarf, if you want to know how all of the pieces you are wearing interact, you NEED  a full length mirror. Basically, if you want to get the entire picture of your personal style, you have to see everything at once. Viewing your top and bottom halves separately will sometimes suffice, but you will be amazed by how different it feels to see your whole self, top to bottom.  There are cheap options, and options that work in tiny spaces, I promise. And tracking down a full length mirror that fits into your dressing area is well worth the time and money. It is an investment in understanding your style.