Many of us already know Alison Gary (39) of Wardrobe Oxygen. She has been blogging about how to make fashion fun and accessible to all women since 2005. She continues to inspire women of all ages, shapes and sizes by documenting both her workwear and weekend outfits. Alison works in web communications for a health care nonprofit and is a feminine Modern Classic who loves colour as much as neutrals, and adores leather jackets. She likes to showcase her curves, enjoys mixing hard with soft fabrics. She is a practical dresser who likes to get on with life:

“Becoming a parent has had the biggest impact on my style the past five years. I care more about a wardrobe that can multitask, I care more about washing instructions, and I want a less fussy wardrobe that gives me more time to go out and live life. The most important thing I’ve learned about dressing for a changing body is to embrace the present. If you curse your current figure or focus too much on the past it shows in your attitude, your style, your posture. By coming to terms with your current self, buying it a few new things to fit and flatter it, you look better, feel better, and are in a better position for positive change.”

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All you need to look polished on a hot day is a fabulous frock with great footwear. Alison has stylish Summer dressing down pat. This watermelon pink jersey number with high-low hemline skims her curves beautifully without being clingy. The wrap style accentuates her torso, and the knee-covering length and V-neckline are very flattering. The asymmetric detailing in the front is a great touch as it creates tonal visual interest. Our blogger likes to experiment with colours, so she decided to sport green peep-toe ankle strap heels and arty green earrings to further play up the vibrant pink of the frock. Watermelon lipstick and bright pink toes make this pretty Summer picture complete.

When asked what her favourite fashion trend for 2014 is, Alison said:

“I love the focus on drape and architecture. The variety in pants, interesting jackets and blouses, dresses that don’t cling yet flatter the figure. It’s a wearable trend for many women, something sewers can replicate at home, and brings style back to focusing on garments.”

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Stripes, riding style boots and sporting black with blue are all things that I love. No wonder I was drawn to this relaxed polished outfit that combines all three elements. The bold striped twill jacket with zipper is the star of the show. It’s playfully dressy and a good length to wear with an untucked top and straight-leg jeans. Adding a tee in a thin stripe and a giraffe print infinity scarf in the same colour family makes for very effective pattern mixing without becoming hectic. Tucking the black jeans into black knee-high boots lengthens the legline. The croc patterned satchel is the Modern Classic support act that adds extra polish. Notice also how the stunning shade of blue is repeated in Alison’s bracelet. Our blogger’s dark curls and gorgeous smile, her best accessories in my book, finish off the look.

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Combining casual plaid with a dressy skirt is a fashion forward look that feels 100% Alison. The taffeta fabric adds polished crispness and is sufficiently soft to drape well. The flannel shirt on the other hand is made from a much softer fabric that looks cosy and collapses back onto the body. Tucking the shirt into the midi would have been the obvious choice. Instead, Alison knotted the shirt, which accentuates the waist just as effectively, and at the same time adds playful flair. Black pointy toe pumps bookend our blogger’s brown hair. A gold-toned bracelet and large statement teardrop pendant are all that’s needed to complete this simple, elegant look.

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The shocking pink coat and stripes make for one happy ensemble. This outfit has a delightful Parisian tomboy-esque vibe going on, don’t you think. It’s the Breton tee paired with the slim-fitting boyfriend jeans and black sunnies. The bright coat has a roomy straight fit that looks modern, while the large buttons and faux Peter Pan collar also give it a retro girly feel. The just-above-the-knee length works great with the rolled light-wash jeans. Excellent colour and pattern mixing with the brown leopard print pumps. Great attention to detail with the clutch echoing the black buttons, and Alison’s dark blue nail polish repeating the blue stripe of the tee. 

Alison Gary - 5

Alison Gary - 5

I was smitten with Alison’s “Tin Man” outfit the moment she posted it back in January. It’s a fantastic example of an easy and current Mum-on-the-Go look. Oxfords made the list of on trend shoe styles for Spring 2014. They’re usually flat or low-heeled, so a practical and stylish choice to keep your feet happy while you get on with your busy day. Our blogger opted for a fun sci-fi silver that amps up the feminine integrity. Cuffing the straight-leg jeans once draws further attention to the fab footwear. Baring the ankle also adds structure to the outfit, as does wearing the V-neck top that exposes more of the neckline. The leather jacket with quilted detailing, soft tee and jeans are low-contrast colours which creates outfit cohesion. The silver jewellery ties in with the metallic footwear, and Alison’s wavy hair adds the finishing girly touch.

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Alison occasionally likes to incorporate a bit of “feminine toughness” into her outfits. And by that I mean tougher elements that aren’t hard edge. Like the leather jacket combined with wedge booties and a concert tee in this outfit. The black booties, Joy Division tank top and chain link on the bag create rock ‘n’ roll cool. So does the leather jacket — with stretch panels for a sleek and comfy fit — in a beautiful mid-blue that immediately softens it up. Pairing these tougher items with a flippy flared skirt also adds in the girly. The leg line is lengthened by keeping the bottom part of the outfit all black with opaque tights. The fun giraffe print scarf makes a second appearance, and makes for fun animal print pattern mixing with the crossbody bag and top.

Hop on over to Wardrobe Oxygen to check out the rest of Alison’s outfits and read her insightful posts on a range of style-related topics, or find out what inspires her on Pinterest. But first let us know in the comments what you love most about our blogger’s inspiring Modern Classic Work and Mum-on-the-Go style.