Pastel Hues

Shoes are my biggest weakness. Yesterday, when getting dressed in my 10 minutes or less rule, I scurried to find a soft pastel hued shoe in my closet. I weeded through the cobwebs, but no luck. I once bought a pair of pink oxfords, wore them only once on Easter Sunday which I don’t celebrate, I gave them away. Herein lies the problem. I have not quite embraced the concept of Spring yet and the possibility that my toes will once shine and flex once again, in pedicure fashion, relived and able to breathe yet again.

And in the same vein, nothing gets my fingers a’flexing like a “New Arrivals” shoe section popping up in my inbox. This season is all about incorporating soft, pastel hues into your ensemble whenever possible. An easy (and chic) way to do so is to step into a blush, mint or lavender-hued sandal during your next outing.

I started my journey at Net-A-Porter where I found these Miu Miu pink babes, and put these Robert Clergerie colorblocked sandals in my shopping cart. Full  price, you bet, but they will last ALL season long.

Next up was The Outnet where I found all my favorite designers all under one roof at major discounts (see: Charlotte Olympia, Alaïa, Alexander Wang where sandals and ballet flats, and these embellished woven sandals are the queen bees of your closet at such low prices that it will shock you. At press time, these were available in a variety of sizes so I would suggest running there while you can.

After that, it was Barneys Warehouse whose sale section never disappoints. Case in point: these pink snakeskin sandals are reduced from $465 to $99! These round-toe oxfords are what I will live in all spring long, and if you happen to be a size 6.5, run don’t walk to these Prada T-strap sandals.

On my last stop, I checked out Matches Fashion candy crushes where I fell in love with everything especially these pink Gianvito Rossi mules. I know I have said before that I refuse to wear mules, but these just might change my tune.

With a few things currently in my cart, I won’t feel as bad leaving them be for a while until I decide hard and true what I am going to buy, and what I can leave behind. I have culled some of my candy crushes for your shopping pleasure. Which one is your fav?

pastel shoes

From top, left to right, here we go:

Saint Laurent blue patent pumps // Tabitha Simmons loafers// mint green Aperlai sandals// Ardene yellow flats, get a similar pair here // Miu Miu  Mary Jane platform sandals //Balenciaga studded wedge sandals// Chuck Taylor High Tops // pink Gianvito Rossi mules // River Island light blue peep toes.

Happy Spring!

2

Spring is Springing

My closet and my mood have been stuck literally in winter’s wrath. The temperature in the Northeast hasn’t soared any higher than a high of 35 degrees since last December, and not only does the weather control what I wear, but my mood depends on it. We did see the glimpse of the shining sun for a day or two last week, but that was very short-lived. According to Wikipedia, I am clearly suffering from SAD.

When it’s cold, I hide behind fifteen layers of cosmic stuff and leave my hat on for days at a time. And those coats? Those have been my armor that got me through the Polar Vortex. I’m just sorry I didn’t catch that Canadian Goose down while I had my chance.

But with the promise of Spring this week, now that’s it’s not winter winter, but still mildly freezing, what should we wear?

With the promise of a high of 44 degrees and a startling 50′s by mid-week, coffee bars will start selling iced versions of their cappuccino’s, the wool hats will disappear, and layers of winter coats will start peeling off like onion skin. The sun does such powerful things to our psyche. But not so fast. When the Ides of March stomp in, the wind still whips us around and we will need some protective gear.

In the case of today, with the temps in the 40′s, I chose a white turtleneck courtesy of Vince (which has lasted me all season long), and added a cropped faux shearling vest, a black beanie, and these Rag & Bone boots for winter’s best.

When I put on this white wedding cake of a maxi skirt, courtesy of a Marolli, I feel so ethereal. Sheer fabrics are all the rage right now (See: Calvin Klein, Preen, etc.) and I can’t imagine squeezing into another pair of skinny jeans until next Fall. This easy to wear trend can be worn with a sweatshirt on cooler days or a boxy crop top for summer. Go figure.

lace maxi skirt

maxi skirt

maxi skirt

To transition into Spring which starts tomorrow, yeah!, I took the black out and just had an all-white and cream moment. With this ivory Acne sweater, and white brogues from Zara, it’s a simple transition when the sun finally shines. Is there a promise for a brighter future? Let’s hear it for Spring!

how to wear an all-white outfit

Cream sweater

white sheer skirt

photos: Lydia Hudgens

Shop the look here:

2

Testing the Green Waters

For me, St. Patrick’s Day is just a blip on the calendar that says wear green especially and only if you’re Irish. But if you are celebrating, prepare to be greeted by a sea of green Guinness-wielding revelers claiming their shamrocks. St Patrick’s Day is here and you probably don’t have a single green item in your wardrobe. The only thing green that I own is the copious amount of kale that resides in my refrigerator.

I do though have an affinity for the hefty combination of green and blue, namely denim with any flavor green especially mint. So get your wardrobe spring-ready with this look as it’s sure to go way beyond the celebrations of St. Patrick’s Day.

St. Patrick’s Day

 

Topshop jacket // Alexander Wang T-Shirt // NSF boyfriend jeans // Givenchy Pandora bag // Pierre Hardy shoes // Saint Laurent aviators // Bumble & Bumble semisumo // Fossil phone case or this one here.

1

Spiked Vanilla

how to wear jeans

This morning, it took me about 10 minutes from start to finish to get dressed knowing full well that my creative prowess is at it’s lowest on a Friday morning at 7am. I put on a white turtleneck, black jeans, black booties, and a black leather jacket, my standard uniformready to face the thrills and chills of another winter’s day.

For the record, I tried other options while sipping my morning juice. I put on fringe boots, but there was too much dancing going on south of my ankles. I put on a crop top. Nope, too freaking cold for that. I took off the heeled booties, and switched to those white standard sneakers I have been obsessed with, creating a boring blank look, devoid of all expressions.

This so-called blank look was mimicking the anti-style movement, or the “divorced dad” look (decked in REI and Crocs). Is this the vanguard of fashion darlings right now? To say that I was dressing intentionally to look like Larry David or Seinfeld, the sitcom about nothing, might be falling short. I just want to be comfortable, and exude an air of je ne sais quoi about what I put on. But instead, I was falling into a generic (for those in the know, I pray to the Céline tribe) trap.

It is not Times Square tourist’s fault. It is normcore’s fault. For the record, I don’t have an affinity for 90’s dressing, I lived in the Mall loud and clear and don’t want to relive it.

tweed coat

Normcore is a fashion trend, pure and simple, and like most fashion trends it’s a riposte to the styles that came before it. While the spirit of “normcore” is intended to evoke understated expressionism, these rather deliberate choices in aesthetic ‘normalcy’ lead me to feel as though these outfits choices spilling all over the internet often fall flat; dull, contrived and au contraire, full of effort.

In my closet, I have far more inspiring pieces than plebeian sweatpants and sneakers and nondescript hoodies or mom jeans and unassuming flat boots. Sure, those items are currently de rigeur but after the novelty wears off — and it wears off quickly — they’re also decidedly boring. But isn’t any trend or non-trend an indication that no matter the garment, we all have something to express through our fashion choices?

Even by adopting the normcore style, one is in fact making a statement regarding their choices, likes, levels of comfort.  And while many are quick to blame the commercialization of fashion and streetstyle for the new war on the antithesis of normcore, I’m sure we can all agree that dressing up is not only more fun and exciting, but also much more pleasing to the eye. I changed and paired this simple white shirt and jeans with a plaid top, a grey blazer, and a tweed coat just to make a statement about making a non-hipster statement. What? Consider this a plea to opt-out of any named trend as I’m not boring vanilla ice cream.

plaid top

plaid top

tweed coat

tweed coat

Photos: Lydia Hudgens

Shop the look:

2

Hitting the Sale Rack

0

Trendy Tevas

I remember back in the 1990’s when I attended overnight camp, Teva Sandals were more popular than Céline Birkenstocks are now. I went to the local store and purchased them, and where the legions of ugly shoes are small but notorious—Teva’s are the predecessor to the Crocs, Vibram Five Fingers, and Uggs, these rubber-soled ones were just a good-intentioned velcro sandal. I wore them for several months even into the school year, and although they were ugly as sin, there was nothing besides bare feet, that were more insanely comfortable. It wasn’t until all of that pond scum caused their porous rubber and flimsy Velcro to decompose—an annual end-of-summer occurrence that any Nineties child could recall with grotesque distinction — that I had to throw them out.

But that was then, and now fast forward to Spring 2014, Prada, Rag & Bone, and Tibi are throwing in the towel and chiming in.  Fancied by recreational hikers and dads on holiday, Teva has been relegated to the very end of the “practical versus pretty” spectrum. Until now, that is. Lower, flatter shoes make a comeback in recent years, with outdoors-y details and utilitarian styles looking nearly—dare we say—cute in recent seasons. Heck, even Chloë Sevigny has taken to Birkenstocks. For quite some time now, the fashion industry has been on a trickle down theory. Think last season’s Birkenstock craze. Fast fashion is grabbing what they can from top designers and “interpreting” it for the mass market. Of course, one walk through Zara and H&M and it is still happening. Think #Normcore.

But what’s new in this landscape is this role reversal that top-tier designers are playing on the copycats. More and more, they are borrowing silhouettes and concepts from the streets and reinterpreting them for the luxury market. Let’s call it a trickle up theory. BirkenstocksVans, Tom’s, Chinatown bags a la Céline, garbage bags from Lanvin, and plastic pearl headphones around your neck are all chanting “Started from the bottom now we’re here.” Here being at Celine, Givenchy, Prada, Marc Jacobs, Marni and Chanel.  Here is Prada’s version of the Tevas. Whoh..whoa…whoa…

Prada spring 2014

Prada spring 2014

Rag & Bone elevated rope-strap sandals onto a thick, black platform. Hilfiger took his Tevas to the beach, fabricating Velcro-strap shoes in an array of sherbet colors. And Marc Jacobs, true to form, took a distinctively downtown approach to Teva’s reinvention: pairing black-satin strap sandals with a 1890′s take on dark fashion. Here is Marc Jacobs’s vision.

Marc Jacobs

There is no doubt that Tevas still have entered into the proverbial limelight. The ultimate purveyor of vomiting quick-trends, Urban Outfitters is selling these for $40, and they are flying out like hot cakes. 

And for my oh-so-amazing styling challenge series, I fashioned six pair that put the Teva to the test.

Teva Sandals

From left down the column 1. 2. 3: Marc Jacobs // Teva // Prada // Marni // Balenciaga // Rachel Zoe sandals

You tell me, would you try these on for size? Happy hiking!

0

Those Giant Pearls

Since fashion month has recently departed, what is left is the layers and layers of designs/ trends that are left to dissect. What is sent down the runway each season though may not always be the most practical for IRL situations. Here’s the thing. Where matters of Céline is concerned, I turn to Zara for the look for less since spending upwards of $1500 on a top isn’t in my budget. I stick to the basics for my daily uniform including striped shirts and jackets, wide-leg pants, and sheer tops.

But sometimes all that can be a tad boring or shall we say vanilla ice cream? And I am a bit more chocolate chip mint, ya know what I mean? As far as what makes a bold statement, and what constitutes editorial gold, the subject of Chanel and bold accessories (logos, chains, et. al) always arises with a bang. When Chanel came out with these oversized speakers that are actually pearls? The Kaiser never fails to impress.

For me personally, it’s the combination of mixing high and low that pulls me out of my comfort zone, and leads me to experiment with existing pieces in my closet with the new looks that I crave.

Chanel bag

Zara coat

tibi cotton shirt // rag & bone black jeans // ZARA coat get a similar one at whistles // topshop lace-trim ankle socks //miu miu metallic-top slip-ons sneakers // chanel bag // kate spade ribbon belt

Chanel bag

And what about my true admiration and trying to approximate this look featuring Lindsey Wixon in the spring 2014 Chanel ads.

Lindsey Wixon

oversized pearls

Yes?

No? I needed red lipstick!

Maybe?

oversized pearls

zara necklace

It seems safe to say this trend of giant pearls is just getting started. We can only hope the fashion world has an ample supply of humongous oysters from which to harvest them.

Miu Miu sneakers

Get the look here:

photos: Lydia Hudgens 

1

Chanel Fall 2014

Leave it to Karl for the biggest spectacle of the fashion season. For a man who never dabbles in the banal, obsessed with the modern, and love of pop culture, the Kaiser erected his very own mega shopping mart for Chanel this season. Highly anticipated and always outdoing himself, for his fall collection there were aisles brimming with Chanel-branded pasta (carbs!), soda, meats (a very cleverly packaged “Jambon Cambon”) cleaning products, home goods, and even a Chanel broom and doormat.

Watch the 2 minute video below, in English, and weigh in on Chanel’s extravagant grocery store theme.

 

 

 

0

From Paris

Fashion is not all smoke and mirrors. This past weekend in Paris brought a bevy of  sure-to-be copied looks and focused on the conceptual avant-garde — the stranger and wilder the looks, the better. Only a few designers could take the fashion industry’s breath away by the way they place a flower on a lapel, draping on a sleeve, the fringe on a coat. These heavy hitters including Céline, ChloéGivenchy, and Kenzo presented collections that are surely going to inspire a craze or two next fall.

Here are my top looks, so far, from the city of light.

1. Céline

The looks on Céline‘s catwalk featured sleek, thirties-styled tailoring, and double-breasted closings gone wild. The thirties were on Philo’s mind when she was first thinking about the collection, especially women like Hannah Höch and Lee Miller, who were pivotal figures in the Dada and surrealist art worlds.  The new, sinewy silhouette was complemented by soon-to-be-coveted knockout accessories: a single statement earring, a bold colorful cuff, and an oversize tangerine fur muff.

Céline

Céline Fall 2014

2. Chloe

Fall excursions for Clare Waight Keller’s Chloé  are often a swing between soft and hard, the girlish and the boyish. But this Fall there was perhaps an injection of a new element: something wild. The coherence and boyish discipline, together with the pretty-prettiness of Chloé, was given an additional jolt with the wild and woolly today. See this leopard fur coat with strips of marigold and ruby fur worn over an ivory fringed dress. The bag tucked underneath the arm exudes just enough nonchalance. Love the  great new bags and enticing outerwear.

Chloe

3. Acne

One of the reasons I love what Acne does, is mastering the perfect sweater and that they did. Sweater dressing is the season’s hot topic, and Acne had ideas to contribute, including ribbed knits that draped the body like beach towels. Take note of the large pom-pom hat you will find on heads everywhere next season.

Acne Studios

4. Stella McCartney

It’s official: Chunky knit pajama-style pants are one of fall’s key trends and Stella is giving her customer what she knows and loves. Borrowed from the worlds of sport and loungewear, I love the zipper detailing and embroidery on her oh-so-sexy clothes, stirrup pants, and those flatforms are back with a vengeance. I can’t think of a better way to start your day– put on your fringe and dance!

Stella McCartney

 

 

2

These Jeans

fringe jeans

Junya Watanabe jeans // Costume National mules

Image via W magazine

After furiously scrolling the internet to find street style looks from London and Paris to emulate, I found this picture and then fell into a rabbit hole in a mad search for these fringed jeans. The must-have embellishment for the upcoming spring season is fringe and these pair of jeans are on my must-have wish list. Now you don’t have to be a granola loving, earth-loving kind of gal (though what is more chic than being eco-friendly) to pull of this trend. Frankly, I don’t see myself spending over $700 on a pair of jeans anytime soon. I am on a jeans cleanse.

So, if you, like me, have wanted to start wearing fringe on steroids, why don’t you high tail it over to your nearest craft store, buy a yard or two of fringe  and take the fate of your imminently future style cues into your own hands with a DIY that seems impossible to screw up.

There will be many replicates coming soon to a blog near you and it’s certainly worth a try. But if you’re not creatively inclined, go for the real deal.

Shop it here:

0