How to Wear a LBD ~ When Black is not Your Color

Tips for wearing a little black dress, when black is not really your color.
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Wear it at night
When you turn out the lights, you cannot see colors in the same way. The light at night is not as bright, and there is already so much shadow around, black is not as harsh on skin.

Fabric Choice
Look for a black dress in a fabric that make the black less black. Silk will generally make a colour less intense, versus satin. Mesh, lace or chiffon are a bit see-through and therefore your skin will slightly alter the affect of the black and soften it down.

Consider the Neckline
A lower neckline will cast less shadow on your face as compared to a high neckline. Cool dark shadows will increase the appearance of lines, wrinkles and double chins.

Up the Makeup
Adding a bit more foundation and a stronger lip colour can help to compensate for an unflattering colour.

Investment Pieces

As the wise Carrie Bradshaw once said, “I like my money right where I can see it… hanging in my closet.” Creating the ­perfect closet and wardrobe is an art form. I like to think that the recipe for success is a handful of fun, trendy pieces and a foundation of classic wardrobe staples. It is smart to invest in timeless staples rather than the more frivolous items, because those staples will never go out of style. Plus, you can build the rest of your wardrobe around them. While everyone probably has their own version of “The Classics”…here is my list of wardrobe staples worth investing in.

1. A Little Black Dress. The LBD tops every list of wardrobe must haves for good reason…it is eternally stylish and versatile. Invest in one you really love, and I guarantee you will be rocking it for years to come.
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2. A Pair of Dark Wash Jeans. Versatility and timelessness make for an ideal wardrobe staple, like jeans. Jeans are a great staple because they can be styled in an endless variety of ways. And they are really comfortable! Choosing an investment pair will guarantee you get a really good fit and durable fabric that will last you throughout the years.
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3. A Structured Jacket. A structured jacket is one of the most versatile pieces you can own. When you choose a well fitting option, it’s also one of the most flattering things you can wear. The perfect blazer can be worn to dress up your jeans, top off your pencil skirt, or even contrast a flowy maxi dress. The options are truly endless with this classic.
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4. Comfortable Black Pumps. Black pumps are the little black dress of footwear. They are professional enough for work, stylish enough for a date, and perfect for just about any occasion. So while I love skyscraper heels as much as the next gal, it is not smart to spend a ton of money on shoes that are too uncomfortable to wear.
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5. A White Button Down Shirt. Finally, every girl needs a nice button down shirt. Like all the other staples, it can be dressed up or down and worn in a variety of different settings. For my ladies with larger chests, be sure to choose one that does not pucker at the buttons.
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Inspiration from Pinterest.

What Gretchen Wore

While I was visiting my family in June, I found this black dress at Lane Bryant on sale. I also had a coupon, so the dress ended up being $15. I have the same dress in eggplant (Check out my blog from April 17). I just purchased this huge statement necklace from Baublebar.com. I added my new handbag from JustFab.com and leopard print peep toes pumps I have had for years.
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What Gretchen Wore

Today I wanted to be comfortable and casual in the office. I thought it would be fun to dress down a little black dress. So, I have taken my little black dress, which I found at Belk last season for $29.99, and paired it with my denim vest. If you remember, this is the denim vest I purchased at Lane Bryant about a month ago for $59.95. I then added my favorite thrift store purchase, which is the necklace ($10) and a copper bangle on my wrist. I have completed the look with a strappy silver sandal I found at DSW last fall on sale for $13.99.
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LBD for Every Body Type

Everyone should have their go to little black dress, so they are ready for an event or party without a stressful last minute dash to the mall. The little black dress comes in so many different styles, you just need to find one that flatters your figure. The easiest way to balance a bottom heavy figure is to choose a little black dress that skims over the lower half of the body. Fuller skirts disguise heavy hips, while showing off the waist. A fitted halter or strapless silhouette, which accents a trim upper body, is very flattering for bottom heavy figures.

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If you do not want to show off your legs, you can still look gorgeous in a little black dress, instead of hiding your legs in pants. Just choose a longer skirt like the one below.

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You do not need to hide your upper body if you have wide shoulders. Instead, look for body balancing details like the trendy asymmetrical neckline, like this one shoulder style.

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Flatter a full bust by drawing the eye to sexy slit sleeves like on this trendy little black dress below. Balance a top heavy figure by opting for a flattering necklines suchs as the V-neck, square neck, wrap or portrait style.

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Most clothing actually hangs better on women with smaller busts, but if you want to add more volume up top look for embellishment or fullness on the bust. This dress below has allover rosettes, including on the bust, which give you a flattering boost.

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If your body lacks natural curves, add feminine presence with texture like with this ruffled black dress. You can also pump up the volume with extra details like full sleeves, ruched waist, layers and ruffles.

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