LA native Nicole Levine (32), Director of Operations at Good Carma Studio, documents her style over at Frankie Hearts Fashion. Nicole is a jeans and trousers gal, who happily wears all denim silhouettes and has a thing for super distressed jeans. Her style persona is on trend casual with rocker and hard-edge influences. She combines a RATE (rough around the edges) style integrity with lots of polish and a feminine touch. Our blogger loves sunnies, leather, designer bags and footwear, and rocks a hat. She also has a soft spot for classic Chanel, and adores sporting sky-high heels regularly. Nicole recently became a Mum to a sweet baby boy, so you’ll see her adorable baby bump in some of the outfits featured here. Extra fun!
“My style over the last few years has definitely evolved and changed. I would describe my style as a mixed bag! It’s a bit edgy, classic, laid back and California cool. I have definitely become more comfortable in my own skin and in my clothes over the years. Confidence is key. If you leave the house not feeling good about your outfit, chances are it will show on your face!”
I discovered Nicole on Pinterest where she was wearing this Sporty Luxe red and black outfit. The cheerful and cosy buffalo plaid coat immediately caught my eye. I thought the big collar and pockets make it extra fun. The second thing I noticed is how Nicole sports her classic Chanel bag with laid-back “oh, I just grabbed that” ease. Such a fab mix of polish and casual. Our blogger wears her “Céline Me Alone” light grey tee untucked over a pair of black denim jeggings that counterbalance the volume of the coat. The jeggings are tucked into Isabel Marant high-top sneakers with oversized tongues as a playful nod to hip-hop culture. A silver cocktail ring and dainty filigree necklaces add subtle bling.
If you’re looking for inspiration on how to create visually interesting outfits with neutrals, then Nicole is your girl. She wears a lot of white, black and grey, and shows us that her favourite pieces have endless mix-and-match possibilities. Here she’s tucked a slouchy pocket tank into a fab pair of colour blocked slouchy trousers. A very 2014 look, and an excellent example of Angie’s recent Sleeveless Top with Sleeveless Vest ensemble. The rolled cuffs showcase more of our blogger’s sky-high heels. These are also two-toned, so they echo the colours of the tuxedo stripe trousers. The beige utility vest with cut-away front and tab shoulders has an androgynous, military vibe. Large silver earrings add a touch of daytime glamour. The stilettos, fringe clutch and Nicole’s bright red lipstick further amp up the girly factor.
I’m featuring two shorts outfits instead of one to show you how easy it is to change the vibe of a look just by switching out tops and footwear. In the first, casual tomboy-esque rendition, Nicole is sporting a pair of heavily distressed boyfriend shorts paired with a black and white raglan sleeve baseball tee (a men’s size to accommodate her growing baby bump). A white panama hat with black band echoes the colours of the tee, and adds extra spunk. Black leather Converse sneakers provide subtle sheen. The twisted red necklace a fun pop of colour. In the second outfit, that same pair of BF shorts gets a ladylike and refined makeover by replacing the tee with a feminine pleated sleeveless blouse. Her stunning black Chanel loafers add a preppy boyish touch. The big black satchel a tad of hard edge. The low ponytail is sweet and playful. Red lippie and nail polish work beautifully with the colour palette.
When asked if she sees her style and outfit choices changing now that she’s a Mum, Nicole replied:
“In the 6 short weeks that I’ve been a mom, I have still remained pretty true to my ‘pre-baby’ style and can’t imagine it changing too much. I can see how easy it is for new moms to get comfortable in their sweats and never leave the house! I would say that the best thing I have done thus far is dress myself everyday I definitely see less heels in my future (which pains me!) when I’m running around with my son, but I will never give them up completely!”
Our neutrals-loving blogger goes bold with a pair of tomato red khakis. Sporting pants in an unexpected, bright colour makes quite the fashion statement. I love it! The fit is great too: slouchy but not overwhelming Nicole’s slender frame. Rolling the cuffs creates a cheeky vibe and gives the outfit structure by showing ankle skin and tapering the hems. Keeping the rest of the outfit black and white allows the pants to take centre stage. Nicole has semi-tucked a mock turtleneck sweater, which partly exposes a black studded skinny belt. The marled pattern adds visual interest, while the leather Converse, again, provide subtle sheen. The hardware on the oversized Givenchy bag ties in with the belt. Nicole’s hair worn down creates softness.
Nicole often sports boyfriend jeans and skinnies, but she wears these flares with equal pizzazz. In fact, it’s the flares paired with the leopard print that turns this simple jeans, tee and jacket outfit into a statement casual look. The flared leg adds drama, while the tigther fit on the thighs brings structure to the outfit. A fluid fit T-shirt — the Céline Me Alone making its second appearance — drapes nonchalantly over the jeans. The bomber jacket is a little shorter than the tee, which emphasizes Nicole’s long leg line. Its grey and black pattern creates tonal visual interest. The faux leather shoulder patches play up our blogger’s rocker style persona. The Chanel shoulder bag with silver chain strap is a delightful juxtapostion of chic and hard edge that fits this outfit splendidly. The black pointy toe pumps work well with the flares because points don’t create and odd looking break line. Oversized sunnies finish off the look.
Nicole has a true knack for making every item in her closet fit her style persona to a T. Take this fitted striped T-shirt, for example. On its own it may have been too classic for our blogger. But by pairing it with the long leather vest, it gets a new lease on life. It also tones down the RATE (rough around the edges) effect of the hectically distressed boyfriend jeans. The fitted style, low scoop neck, and elbow-length sleeves create outfit structure. The statement vest is roomy with longer front tails, which works great with the slim-fit boyfriend jeans. The contrast between the woolly lining and leather exterior provides tonal visual interest. The refined Chanel loafers add chic polish. Our blogger finishes off the look with a huge black bag from her extensive collection.
Which of Nicole’s marvelous outfits is your favourite? Let us know in the comments, and then have fun checking out the rest of our blogger’s outfit archives and fun pinboards chock-full of bag and footwear candy.