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Style is not a budget.

Fashion News Roundup: Week 43, 2014

by Inge
Sophia Webster and J.Crew continue their collaboration, an interesting H&M book will hit the shelves next month, Rakuten launches a US fashion website, and more news from the style trenches this week.

Fun Fashion Fact

Did you know that British chemist Sir William Henry Perkin accidentally discovered the colour mauve while trying to find a synthetic substitute for the antimalarial drug quinine. He originally named it “Tyrian Purple,” but soon changed it to mauve or mauveine, which became the world’s first synthetic dye.

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.

Mom on the Go Ensemble: The Statement Sweater

by Angie

This is the most popular Mum on the Go casual outfit formula with my clients at the moment because it’s fast, fashionable and comfortable. It’s all about the chunky or semi-chunky, fluid or oversized, statement pullover that’s an easy pull-on-and-go piece over jeans or casual bottoms. Add a pair of boots and a bag, and Bob’s your uncle. 

Karen Millen Tweed TunicKaren Millen Aztec Knit

Choose any colour palette. Here are the components:

Sweater: You’re after a super cozy BIG pullover, either solid or patterned, with a neckline of your choice. Remember that a welted hem, high-low hemline, or any style of cocoon shape silhouette that tapers back onto the hip will give the sack-like silhouette ample structure. Tapered sleeves add further structure. Opt for a length that is sufficiently long to cover the top part of the leg if you’re shy about showcasing that part of the body. Otherwise, a length that grazes the crotch point is fine. 

A camisole, thermals or long-sleeved tee under the sweater provides extra insulation if the draught is a little chilly for your liking. 

Jeans or Casual Pants: Choose relaxed skinnies (or slim-fit boyfriend jeans), straight leg jeans, Ponte pants or leather jeggings. Roll the hems to showcase bootie detailing, or wear them unrolled. Bootcuts will also work because they’re fitted on the thigh, providing structure for the sweater. 

Casual Boots: Choose booties, mid-calf styles, or knee-high casual boots that are flat or heeled. Wedge sneakers are another option. 

Accessories: Finish off the look with a shoulder bag, crossbody, hobo or satchel. Wear a hat like a newsboy, haute baseball cap or beanie if you fancy headgear. Or add a scarf for textural interest. Add jewellery, eyewear and watch as desired. 

Top the whole lot off with a coat that fits over the sweater. It’s best not to choose a sweater with a dolman sleeve because that makes fitting the coat, unless it’s a cape or cocoon shape, a lot more tricky. 

Mom on the Go Ensemble: The Statement Sweater

Some of my stay at home, or work from home clients have made this outfit formula their cold weather uniform because its simplicity and coziness cannot be beat. They have an assortment of sweaters in a range of thicknesses and colours with bottoms to match. A capsule of good looking weatherproof boots is the finishing touch. Current and practical.

Link Love: Mad for Plaid

by Inge

After returning home from Seattle with a plaid cape coat, two plaid flannel shirts, and window pane plaid trousers and pullover, I am now eyeing a gingham button-down. I clearly have checks on my mind, and intend to wear them all season long. For those of you sharing my “mad for plaid” mood, I’ve rounded up some fun plaid-spiration:

Fab Links from Our Members

La Belle Demimondaine found Kali’s shopping and un-shopping processes very understandable, and relatable. She was also quite taken with the concepts of a “Minimalist Haul”, and “Five Outfits Level 2″.

MuseumGal enjoyed this NPR piece on power dressing for women.

After ordering a few pieces from Ann Taylor and exploring ways to wear them Carole found their blog, and she loves the “3 Ways to Wear” posts. Great ideas to get the creative juices flowing!

16 Ways to Tuck, Tie, Roll, and Twist Your Clothes Like a Stylist“. Citygirldc was delighted to come across this Buzzfeed article, as she has always wanted to know how to do these styling tricks.

Ingunn likes the concept behind new website Wardrobe Icons: “A very tightly edited fashion shopping site is interesting, because for me, fewer choices are always better, at least that’s how I feel when I browse their site.”

Vildy thought this article on “dynamic pricing” was very interesting.

Angie lets us know that Jean Paul Gaultier’s very last ready-to-wear runway show did not disappoint and received a standing ovation by all. In true Gaultier fashion, he challenges runway conventions with a huge sense of humour and enormous creativity. Be sure to read all about his motivations behind the designs for this collection in the write-up. It’s a masterpiece. 

Last but not least, Angie also thinks the Moschino’s 2015 Spring “Barbie” show is worth a peek. She said: “It’s time to forget about how you really feel about Barbie, and enjoy the show for the drama and creativity that came down the runway. Those oversized plastic accessories are a work of art.”

Roundups

Dressier Casual Items

Casual pieces that lean slightly towards dressy.

Read More >

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 >

A Fun Matchy-Matchy Ensemble

by Angie

A few weeks ago Inge and I were shopping together when we stumbled across a fun outfit combination. Inge fell in love with the Shadow Plaid Barely Boot Editor Pant from Express, and had to try them on. You can’t see the subtle navy and dark red plaid all that clearly in the photo, but if you click on the pants and magnify them, you’ll see the pattern in more detail. 

As Inge tried on the pants she happened to be wearing Ann Taylor’s Oversized Shirt in white, untucked under the Loft’s Windowpane Sweater, with a pair of rolled straight leg jeans. She emerged from the dressing room to ask what I thought of the pants and I was bowled over by the whole ensemble. “Matchy-matchy fabness!” I remember exclaiming. And Inge loved it too.

The plaid on the pants were a great match with the squares of the window pane sweater, and everything was in the same colour palette.

Inge had to order a longer inseam, but she got the pants. The day they arrived Inge wore the ensemble out to dinner. She finished off the look with Seychelles Solitude black booties, and a rich cognac cheetah clutch. A great outfit that came together coincidentally. Brilliant.

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: Sleeved Midi Dresses

by Angie

There is a larger assortment of sleeved midi dresses in stores this season, which is a great improvement on last year. A length of 40 inches hits me just below the knee and I’m 5ft 6, so hopefully that’s a good gauge. Add hosiery, footwear and a coat and you’re done. 

  • Maggy London Print Long Sleeve Scuba Sheath Dress: At 42 inches, this is a great length on taller gals. Stretchy, subtle in pattern, and elongating piping detail. Wrinkle resistant and easy to travel with.
  • Maggy London Print Jersey Sheath Dress: Jewel toned, machine washable and another good option for tall gals. The top and bottom black borders break up the pattern in an interesting way. Read the rave reviews.
  • Maggy London Lace Appliqué Floral Print Sheath Dress (Regular & Petite): Elegant, a little baroque and retro, and very flattering. I love the scalloped lace trim and moody floral pattern. Also available in petites. Runs small.
  • Maggy London Metallic Jacquard Midi Sheath Dress (Regular & Petite): This dress finishes at 44 inches and is the best of the lot for very tall gals. Tailored, but does not cling. Gorgeous metallic jacquard fabric. It's a little dark though, so make sure you're okay with that. The brown looks fresh and is lighter than a black dress. Also available in petites.
  • Tracy Reese Print Stretch Silk Crepe Dress: A crepe midi with romantic red roses. I love the high boat neckline, elbow sleeves, and ruching details. It's quite clingy and will showcase your curves so consider yourself warned. It's one of those dresses that you could dress up for an occasion, or dress down for work.
  • Ted Baker London Petal Print Gathered Stretch Sheath Dress: A frock that's slightly less tailored on the waist, and works as well under leggings. The front knot of the dress is in an unusual spot below the waistline, which looks unique and fashionable. Camouflages muffin top quite successfully.
  • Tracy Reese Ruched Jersey Dress: A great style for a shorter neck and larger bust. It also works well on a broad shoulder line. You really need to fill out the top part of this dress for it to work best. Tailored but does not cling. Ruching helps smooth out midsection lumpage and bumpage. Fun asymmetrical hem.
  • Boss BOSS Side Pleat Print Jersey Dress: A scoop neckline looks great on a larger bust and shorter neck. Machine washable viscose in a geometric blue pattern.
  • Vince Camuto Faux Leather Panel Ponte Sheath Dress (Regular & Petite): An elegant dress with hip drape. Adds curve to a straighter figure, AND complements a curvier figure. An unusual colour. Read the rave reviews.
  • Classiques Entier Bateau Neck Colorblock Sheath Dress: The colour blocked detailing on this dress gives the illusion of an extra narrow defined waist. Not at all clingy and nice for the office.
  • Tracy Reese Print Stretch Crepe Dress: Digital tree patterns are fashionable at the moment and here's one on a dress. Excellent paired with black booties or pumps. The black border on the pattern does create a strong horizontally cutting line so consider yourself warned.
  • Tracy Reese Mixed Print Surplice Jersey Dress: This frock creates beautiful curves on the body. Not clingy, but very curvy. The placement of the pattern on the back and front torso gives the illusion of a more defined waist. The asymmetrical hem lengthens the leg line. Excellent on a fuller bustline. Might need to size up.
  • Karen Millen Brushstroke Print T-shirt Dress: A shorter frock with high-low hemline and boxy silhouette. It's as great worn over leggings as it is on its own. On sale and runs small.

Combine these dresses with pumps, booties, peep-toe booties or taller boots. Moto jackets and boxy jackets work well over straight sheath and shift dresses too. But a knee-length wool coat, either tailored, a man coat or cocoon style, gets my top vote. A very elegant and fashionable pairing over a frock.

Karen Millen
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