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Style is not a body type.

Back To School Style Stories

by Angie

Back to school advertisements are everywhere in the US at this time of year. And while some of the ads are for school supplies, most of them seem to be about shopping for a fresh and fashionable wardrobe before the start of a new school year. I wore a school uniform for the twelve years of my schooling, so wardrobe prep for the new school year was a non-event.

My mum would make sure that my school uniform still fitted and was in good shape, replenishing items as necessary. School shirts, dresses and shoes were refreshed every year or two. Socks and tights were replenished more frequently. School blazers, pinafores, ties and knitwear on the other hand, lasted forever. So there you go. No fun back to school shopping memories for me.

If you didn’t wear a school uniform, I bet you have fun back to school style stories to share. Was there an annual shopping event right before the start of school, and did you look forward to it? Did you take special care with what you wore on the first day back at school?

From left to right, my first day of school in 1975 with brother Hugo, Greg in his primary school uniform with sister Gail at about the same time, and Greg (left) at high school in the ’80s.

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.

Wearing Dark Red in Fresh Ways for Fall

by Angie

Judging by the excitement about my recent post on fab finds in shades of dark red, many YLF readers are glad to see the return of dark red for Fall. Although it’s not my favourite shade of red, I’m excited to help clients combine the colour in ways that feel current and fresh. So I hopped back onto my Fall & Winter 2014 pinboard for inspiration. 

Thinking outside of the box when wearing dark red is fun. Unexpected clashing colours work in perfect harmony. Matchy-matchy outfits look thoroughly modern. And there is no such thing as too much dark red. Let’s take a peek.

  1. Dark red with dark red. WOW. Wearing a subdued non-neutral from head to toe looks ultra fresh.
  2. Casual dark red from head to toe.
  3. Combine dark reds with tomato red and shocking pink. One of my favourites.
  4. Or choose one blinding bright to match with dark red, like shocking pink.
  5. Wear dark red in a pattern with a mid-tone blue, black and pumpkin accents.
  6. With burnt orange accents, if adding warmth to the palette is your thing. My next favourite combination.
  7. Use dark red as an accent with graphic black and cream to create a clean and crisp effect.
  8. Wear it with shades of chocolate brown and a dash of shimmer.
  9. Dark red with white accents looks super fresh and is another personal favourite.
  10. A psychedelic colour blocked feast of dark red with hints of mauve, coral and neon orange.
  11. A little more traditional when combined with tan and black, although the shimmer adds a fresh touch.
  12. Royal and rich with gold.
  13. More gold with dark red and a touch of black.
  14. Another classic with black and hints of white and light grey.
  15. Dark red with ink blue, denim and lots of texture.
  16. More ink blue and texture, plus shine.
  17. A little tomato red goes a long way.
  18. Combine dark red with blush and black.
  19. Keep the palette cool with lilac and purple.
  20. Shades of denim blue dress down dark red sparkle.
  21. Textured red with textured charcoal.
  22. Equal parts cobalt and black with dark red.
  23. A smidgen of emerald green, tomato red, purple and light blue liven up the dark red.
  24. Classic charcoal and black are always good.

I didn’t see any outfits that combined dark red with chartreuse and cream, or dark red with aqua and cream. But those combinations are gorgeous to my eye and I encourage you to try them too. And if you don’t mind looking a little ‘Christmassy”, pairing dark red with forest green is another way to go. 

Classic colour combinations are always great, but unexpected combinations pack more punch. So if you are creating outfits with dark red, consider going beyond neutrals like tan, brown, black, grey and white. The colour is a lot more versatile than you might think.

Dark Red Inspiration

Fashion News Roundup: Week 33, 2014

by Inge
Opening Ceremony is bringing a bit of Broadway to New York Fashion Week, Target is launching a maternity activewear collection, Lucky Magazine heads into a new direction, and more fashion news that made the headlines this week.

Fun Fashion Fact

Did you know that the traditional Marinière, the Breton shirt originally worn by French sailors in Brittany, has twenty-one stripes, a reference to each of Napoleon Bonaparte’s victories. 


Spring and Summer Tops

Dressier with business separates or dressed down with jeans.

Read More >

Crisp Jackets

Fabulous with trousers for business, or with jeans for smart casual.

Read More >

Fluid Tops

Roomy, fluid fits for Spring across a variety of styles.

Read More >

Not So Basic Tees

A little extra design detail means stylish sans topper.

Read More >

Boyfriend Jeans

Here are my top picks of boyfriend jeans from Nordstrom.

Read More >

Ensemble: Sleeveless Top with Vest

by Angie

This ensemble is for Team Sleeveless. Of course, you can substitute the sleeveless layering top for a sleeved option, but the point of the ensemble is to bare your arms. There is something extra fabulous about layering a sleeveless topper over a sleeveless top. It’s a little unexpected, thoroughly modern, and very breezy. A grown-on sleeve is just as effective as a cut-away sleeve. 

There are many ways to interpret this formula. I’ve pulled together three versions as a starting point. A denim-friendly version on the left, a dressier skirt version in the middle, and a funkier rendition on the right. Choose any colour palette and feel free to incorporate both dressy and casual pieces into the outfit. 

Here are the components: 

Sleeveless Top: Think sleeveless T-shirt, knitted top or blouse in tailored or fluid fits. Patterns and panel prints work just as well as solids. Colours work just as well as neutrals. Leave the top untucked or partially tucked. 

Vest: You’ll need a sleeveless jacket that’s either dressy or casual. Think masculine waistcoats, utility vests, avant-garde drapey styles, sleeveless motos and denim vests. Both long and short vests will work. Create a low or high contrast between the two layers. Keep the vest unfastened to create loose modern layers, and to showcase more of the top underneath. 

Bottoms: Pair the layered top and topper with a bottom that works with the pieces. Think jeans, dressy trousers, track pants, casual pants, shorts, pencil skirts, flared skirts, short shorts, harem pants and culottes. Create a high or low contrast between the top and bottom parts of the outfit — both will work. 

Footwear: Choose a pair of shoes that work with the rest of the outfit. Ankle strap pumps, peep-toe booties, gladiators and loafers get my top vote. But any shoe that tickles your fancy is fab. 

Accessories: Finish off the outfit with a bag of your choice, either dressy or casual. Add jewellery, watch and eyewear as desired. 

Sleeveless toppers are an excellent way to add ventilating structure to a Summer outfit. They provide the magic of that third piece without the insulation. If you normally prefer covering your arms, then combining a sleeveless top with a sleeveless topper might make you feel more comfortable about baring them.

Ensemble: Sleeveless Top with Vest

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

Link Love: Flats for the Win

by Inge

I came across Hannah Rochell’s blog En Brogue a while back when I was looking for flat footwear inspiration. She is the Features Editor at InStyle Magazine, wears flats exclusively, and has now also written a book about her peds passion.

Here are four more links for those of us who are just as enamoured with flats as Hannah Rochell:

Fab Links from Our Members

Debbie Roes’ post about relapsing into shopping habits really resonated with La Belle Demimondaine, especially the part about having feelings of ‘not being good enough’. La Belle wanted to point out that that is what makes the YLF community so exceptional: “everyone is very loving, kind, and encouraging”.

As Summer winds down, here’s a fun story about the scientific fact that everybody looks hotter in sunglasses. MsMary would also like to present to you her own personal Exhibit A: Blair of Atlantic-Pacific.

Angie is sharing two fantastic outfits with us today. Adrienne from The Rich Life on a Budget rocks her culottes, while Sylvia from 40 Plus Style’s killer skirt look complements her colourful home.

Speaking of culottes, Joy came across this Wall Street Journal article on how to wear them.

After watching this video, ‘spezzato’ is now firmly established in RoseandJoan’s vocabulary, as it is fun to have a single word to describe a look which previously required a whole sentence.

Rachylou is very taken with Annette Hoeldrich’s style and her blog, Lady of Style. Rachylou said: “Her style strikes me as both powerful and accessible. I believe she goes places in the outfits she shows and does something while wearing them. Real wear!”

Quietgirl was interested to learn about Procter & Gamble’s latest consumer product: the Swash machine, a device meant to delay laundering or dry cleaning.

Transcona Shannon is in love with Eileen Fisher’s Fall 2014 collection and wanted to share this video (click on Fall 2014 Runway Show). The brilliant use of layers, the flattering but not body con shapes, and the gorgeous fabrics and textures really appeal to her.

Brooks Brothers
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