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Style is not an age.

Fashion News Roundup: Week 44, 2014

by Inge
Beyonce is working on an athletic streetwear label for Topshop, Diane von Furstenberg will dress Lady Liberty, Victoria Beckham is named UK Entrepreneur of the year, and other fashion news that made headlines this week.

Fun Fashion Fact

Did you know that Oscar de la Renta redesigned the Boy Scouts of America uniforms in 1980? He worked for two years on the remake of the boy, girl and adult uniforms, and his tan-on-olive designs would be the official uniform for almost three decades.

Angie's latest top picks

These are Angie's picks. You can collect items for your own wishlist or shopping list using YLF Finds. If you are logged in, you can collect the items right here by clicking the icon. Read more about using YLF Finds here.

Ensemble: Bootcut Pants & Five Sweaters

by Angie

My business casual clients often ask for help pulling together trendier outfits with bootcut trousers that they can wear to work. They usually have a good neutral assortment of modern classic bootcut trousers, and dressy pointy toe pumps or booties to wear with them. But they want a little fashion action up top that goes beyond the classic fitted sweater, button-down shirt and blazer. That’s where the trendier pullover and coat comes in. 

Choose any colour palette for your own outfit. Here are the components:

Bootcut Trousers: I’ve stuck to black bootcut trousers because they’re the most common in business casual wardrobes. But do think beyond black with shades of grey and blue, brown, cream, tan, toffee, and plaids and pinstripes. Wear them no shorter than a quarter inch off the ground with a heel height of your choice.

Current Pullovers: I’ve started the ball rolling with five options, but there are many more. All are fashionably fluid or gently oversized, with just enough structure in the rest of the style to create a professional appearance. 

  1. Asymmetrical Tunic: Choose a fine gauge knit in a luxurious yarn like cashmere or merino wool. Asymmetrical hems work well on bootcuts because of their snug fit on the thigh and knee, which provides ample structure for the oversized silhouette. Joie’s Tambrel  Sweater TunicHelmut Lang’s Poncho Sweater and Halogen’s Asymmetrical Sweater are good examples of the look. 
  2. Cropped Pullover: Choose a style that is boxy to offset its short length. Make sure it covers the waistband of the trousers if it doesn’t have a welt. J.Crew’s Demylee Gisele Sweater and Collection Cashmere Chunky Turtleneck are great options. Wear a camisole the same colour as the trousers to prevent midriff exposure at work. 
  3. Deep V-Neck Sweater: You’re after a chunky pullover with striped deep V-neck detailing. A lace camisole is lovely under this style if it’s cut too low for work. 2020Ave Deep V Neck Ribbed Sweater is one option. Cozy and comfy at the office. 
  4. High-Low, Upscale Sweatshirt: Choose one with a fitted welt, and preferably a high-low hemline. A silk front version creates an even dressier look. J.Crew’s Exploded Floral Sweatshirt is fabulous over black bootcut trousers because of its high-low hemline, which isn’t all that visible in the photos. It’s huge, so size down a size.
  5. Fashionable V-Neck:  This is the simplest option. Choose a fine gauge V-neck sweater in a fluid fit with a welt or high-low hemline. Partially tuck the front and add a belt to the pants for structure. Banana Republic’s Extra Fine Merino Wool Vee Pullover fits the bill. 

Footwear: Pointy toe pumps and booties generally work best under flared bottoms because the toe boxes peek out from under the hems. Low or high contrasting footwear can both work.

Outerwear: Tailored coats will probably be too snug over the sweater, so a longer length coat in a fashionably roomy fit is the way to top off the outfit. Think man coat, oversized peacoat, cape or cocoon style. Check out J.Crew’s Stadium-Cloth Topcoat, Melton Swing Coat, Stadium-Cloth Drop-Waist Coat and Pinstripe Topcoat for options that are currently on sale. 

Accessories: Choose a bag that tickles your fancy, and add a belt if partially tucking these tops is your preference. A chunky necklace is a nice juxtaposition with the sportier deep V-neck sweater and sweatshirt, but can work with all of these tops. Finish off the look with jewellery, watch and eyewear as desired.

Bootcut Pants & Five Sweaters

I have worn this formula a couple of times over the last month with a pair of grey pinstripe bootcut trousers from Theory. I chose an oversized cabled ink metallic pullover with high-low hemline which I semi tucked with a cream belt. Cream pointy toe booties and citron clutch finished off the look. I have two man coats and an oversized cream peacoat that work well over oversized knitwear.

Link Love: Tights for Fall

by Inge

Now that Fall has officially started, and cooler temps are here, I’m seeing lots of women sporting skirts and frocks with tights in Antwerp. That’s why I found it extra fun to see several articles on hosiery pop up this week too:

Fab Links from Our Members

L’Abeille thought our readers in academia and the sciences might get a kick out of this “Why do academics dress so badly” article in The Guardian.

Bj1111 enjoyed this article on the challenges of dressing for the academic environment.

Laurinda says Imogen’s blog post on the undertones of colours might be helpful for people who find themselves in between the “colour seasons.

Every so often someone on the forum asks about what is appropriate to wear to a funeral. Joy enjoyed Bill Cunningham’s short video “Paying Respects“.

Angie wanted to share this fascinating video on how and why couples match their outfits in Korea.

LadyLilac loves these two Fashionista articles: 4 ways to style a turtleneck, and How Stephanie Phair Became President of The Outnet 10 Years Out of University.

CocoLion informs us that forum member Mo has started her own blog, with a focus on wardrobe management.

Wardrobe consultant Tina Adams posted about What’s In & What’s Out for Fall, highlighting Americana and upscale activewear. HiggsMistress points out that there’s a great picture of our own Angie in bootcuts and yellow Converse sneakers


Dressier Casual Items

Casual pieces that lean slightly towards dressy.

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Casual Wear

Casual pieces that can be dressed up or down to suit you.

Read More >

Interesting Neutral Items

There are many beautiful neutral pieces in stores right now.

Read More >

Fun Wool Coats

Across an assortment of styles, colours and lengths.

Read More >

Current Cardigans

Opt for a current style rather than a classic cropped round neck.

Read More >

The Big Poncho Trend

by Angie

BIG is the operative word because ponchos come in two fits: oversized and very oversized. You have to be at peace with the extremely boxy and unstructured integrity of this style in order to feel fab. It’s supposed to look somewhat overwhelming, so opt for a look that is just flattering enough, instead of conventionally flattering. It’s a theatrical silhouette that comes to life in motion. 

Ponchos are a practical and fashionable option to wear over equally trendy oversized knitwear. They aren’t all that insulating, but can be just the right weight at certain times of the year. Some find ponchos cozy and comfortable because they’re loose, soft and drapey. Others find the excess fabric uncomfortable because it flaps about and gets in the way of daily activities. 

Ponchos come in all sorts of silhouettes, lengths, fabrics, colours, weights and patterns, as seen below. There is a poncho for everyone, so take your pick. They used to be thought of as boho, but these days the look can be arty or avant-garde too. The boxier the fit and longer the length, the more overwhelming the style. But you can create a relatively structured look by wearing a shorter length and choosing a soft fabric that drapes back onto the body. Wearing ponchos that fit more like swing style pullovers with tapered sleeves adds further structure to the silhouette. Asymmetrical hemlines create interesting lines on the body that draw the eye up and down.  

Ponchos can be made of knits and wovens. Styles can be lightweight for indoors, or heavy for outdoors. They can be pull-on like a pullover, or have a front opening like a cardigan. They can be layered over a camisole like a sweater, or worn over multiple items like a coat.

The poncho is not a great match for my style persona. I find the excess fabric annoying, and the overall look too arty, whimsical and dramatic. Pop me in a strict roomy man coat, and I’m much happier. I do enjoy the look on others, and have fun helping clients pick their ponchos. I vote yay all the way. What’s your take on the poncho trend?

Zara Cowlneck PonchoZara Two-tone PonchoZara Hooded Cape with Piping

BP. Print Tassel Trim PonchoMICHAEL Michael Kors Turtleneck Poncho SweaterEileen Fisher Luxe Sheen Poncho

Haute Hippie Turtleneck PonchoClub Monaco Adee Poncho

Tibi Melange Boiled Merino Wool PonchoHelmut Lang Asymmetric Alpaca Poncho

Aviu Asymmetric Striped Poncho

Zara Poncho Coat

Rebel Chic

Jean Druesedow

The Sartorialist: Closer

Scott Schuman

The Truth About Style

Stacy London

kate spade new york

Deborah Lloyd

You Are What You Wear

Jennifer Baumgartner

Weekly Roundup: Olive Items

by Angie

Olive is an earthy shade of green that functions as a staple colour for some of my clients. Some olives are dark and very green, whereas others are lighter and browner. Take your pick. There’s a lot of olive around at the moment, which makes my olive-loving clients and friends happy. Some of the styles are on sale. 

Olive tends to look good on those with “Autumn” complexions, to use an old style term that will make sense if you’ve had your colours done by a specialist. It often looks good on those with green eyes. I do have dark green eyes, but don’t have any olive in my wardrobe. I quite like darker shades, but the colour doesn’t make me happy. So for now, I’ll stick to eating olives instead of adding the colour to my wardrobe. How about you?

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