Weekly Roundup: Comfy White Sandals

White sandals look Summery, and are a nice alternative to metallics. They are just as versatile and a lot more crisp. White footwear is trendy at the moment, but I think it’s always in style. It pulls an outfit together that has white components in it. It works well with white accessories, or when you have light blonde or white hair to bookend the look. Or just wear white footwear because it looks modern and graphic.

Here’s a large assortment of comfortable dressy and casual white sandals. Many are repeat styles, and many are winners on clients. Some styles come in wide and narrow widths. Some have built-in arch support. Remember that arches and insteps are NOT the same thing. The arch is on the bottom inside part of the foot between the toe and heel. The instep is the top arched part of the foot, or vamp of the foot. Also remember to try a wide size when you have wide feet.

I’ve chosen the white options here, but there are other colours to choose from too. Browse the colours and read the stellar reviews.

  • Rockport Cobb Hill Collection Rockport Cobb Hill CollectionCobb Hill Aubrey: 812 GLOWING 5-star reviews for good reason. They look better on the foot in person.
  • SCHUTZ Elida Double Strap Mules: Soft leather and a very stable heel make these a lot more comfy than they look. You need regular volume feet to fill them out.
  • Gentle Souls By Kenneth Cole Gentle Souls by Kenneth ColeLavern: More substantial and structured than flip-flops, these slides are easy to walk in if your feet fill them out. Too wide for low-volume feet.
  • 'Tonga' Leather Sandal: Incredible arch support that suits a range of foot types because of adjustable straps.
  • Naot NaotLisa: These are an excellent fit for flat feet or for those that need a lot of arch support. The straps adjust for width, and the vamp fits most shapes of insteps.
  • Naot NaotPixie: This gets my vote for best smart casual dainty sandal with arch support. It's easy to find sandals with arch support, but they're usually very casual and quite chunky. These are not. Best on regular volume feet.
  • LifeStride LifeStrideCarnival: A dressy sandal that is reasonably soft and cushioning. Elegant on the foot. Too narrow for wide feet.
  • Benue Ankle Strap Sandal: These are my favourites because they're refined and dainty. Surprisingly, the buckles do not dig into your feet and ankles, but they are too wide for my narrow feet. NOT for feet that need arch support.
  • Me Too Me TooArena: Fabulous for a wider foot and can work for bunions too. Great on a wider ankle.
  • Vandy Slide Sandal: These are an update on the classic Arizona Birkie, and they look as great as they feel. The platform heel adds a bit of NOW. I like these best on wider feet and ankles. Very flattering.
  • Dolly Block Heel Sandal: A relatively comfortable '70s and '90s sandal with statement buckles. Better on a lower volume foot because the bottom strap is not adjustable.
  • L'Amour Des Pieds L'Amour Des PiedsDordogne: Modern and fun in a utility kind of way. These can work with bunions if your feet aren't wide. They cover a lot of the foot, so you have to be okay with that.
  • Sola Sandal: Extreme comfort with just enough support. Works best on higher volume feet.
  • Patsy Sandal: These look better on the foot and in person. Their excellent cut suits a range of foot types. Size down half a size for narrower feet. The criss-cross strap detailing is very flattering.
  • Rockport Cobb Hill Collection Rockport Cobb Hill CollectionCobb Hill Helen: Extreme casual comfort with a touch of boho. Very manageable heel height. The cut-out detailing on the foot creates a maximal effect, so consider yourself warned.
  • Premium Offroad Sandal: Trendy Sporty Sandals for high volume feet.
  • Maritsa Lara Slingback Sandal: These have worked well on wider feet with narrower ankles. Can be forgiving of small bunions. The V-shape of the vamp is flattering on wide ankles.
  • Rockport Cobb Hill Collection Rockport Cobb Hill CollectionCobb Hill Hollywood Two-Piece Sandal: Pretty good arch support and two-toned fabness with the metallic inserts. Maximal on the foot, and super cute on a wider foot.
  • Season Sandal: If you enjoy Danskos, give these a try. They're wider than they used to be and the shape of the last is a little dfferent. That said, I have many happy clients in the fun clog that's best suited to higher volume feet.
  • 'Amadour' Platform Sandal: These have worked well on narrower feet with bunions. Your toes will only peep through the hole if your feet are narrow. There is room in the toe box though, so good for bunions.
  • PIKOLINOS PikolinosP. Vallarta 655-0720: Streamlined Boho-Lite for regular volume feet. Might work on slightly wider feet.
  • Luna Sandal: Pretty and quite unique with the high vamp, slit and bow. They look like they'd be wide on the ankle, but they aren't as long as the vamp fits the shape of your instep.
  • OAK Espadrille Wedge Sandal: These are remarkably comfy as long as you don't mind the inflexibility of the platform. Especially flattering on a wider foot and ankle.
  • Aceline Slide Sandal: Streamlined, dressy and versatile. Very comfy on a regular volume foot.
  • LifeStride LifeStrideMilly: A modern classic and affordable wedge that goes the distance. Best on regular volume feet.
  • Laguna Sandal: Excellent uber casual support for wide feet.
  • Naturalizer NaturalizerNalani: I have these, and duplicated them because they are one of the very few styles that are available in a US6.5 NARROW. They are classic, extremely comfy and go the distance. Look better on the foot. Love them, and wear them with dresses, jeans and pants.
  • SAS SASSavanna: Dressier, classic, versatile and VERY comfy unless you need a lot of arch support. The black heel will bookend dark hair. Adjustable straps and FIVE options of width allow for a great fit.
  • Rieker Rieker43711 Mirjam 11: Interesting and quite maximal on the foot. Boho-lite, and crisp in the white. Well suited to regular and lower volume feet.

Go to the collection page if you would like to see the images alongside my descriptions.

Zappos
Naot NaotLisa
$145.00
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1
Zappos
Naot NaotPixie
$149.94
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8
Zappos
Me Too Me TooArena
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2
Nordstrom
Sola Sandal
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2
Nordstrom
Patsy Sandal
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3
Nordstrom
Season Sandal
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5
Nordstrom
Luna Sandal
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5
Nordstrom
Laguna Sandal
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3
Zappos
SAS SASSavanna
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1

Trend: Polo Tops

A polo top is a knitted top with a very specific style of knitted collar and placket. The placket typically has two or three buttons, and an optional pocket. It’s inspired by golf wear, equestrian wear, and tennis wear. The most famous polo shirts are by Lacoste, complete with crocodile emblem and starched piqué fabric. Lacoste shirts or Crocodile shirts are classics that look as fab today as they did decades ago.

The fashion industry is giving the polo shirt and its fun iterations its trendy moment. Sleeves are all sorts of lengths and fits range from body-con to fluid. Fabrics are KNITTED and made of piqué, all types of jersey, gauze, mesh, ribbing, or yarn that resembles knitwear (sweaters in the US). The collars and plackets are standard. The collection showcases a wide assortment of polo tops across patterns and colours.

Mango
Openwork Knit Polo
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5
Zara
Crocheted Polo Shirt
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5
Nordstrom
Polo Sweater
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1
Nordstrom
Heart Logo Polo
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1
Nordstrom
Ray Stripe Polo
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2
Shopbop
Stella Jean Polo Tee
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1
Shopbop
Le Superbe Room Polo
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2

Very few of my clients and friends wear fashion polo tops, although many wear the gear version for golf and tennis. They generally find them too strict, sporty, angular and hard, unflattering and preppy, and don’t like the collar. Some find them twee, dowdy and unattractive. They’ll wear them for sport, but not for fashion.

I’m in the minority because I LOVE polo tops. They are casual but dressier and more interesting than a basic tee. I wore fluid versions in the ‘80s, and fitted versions in the early ‘90s. I also wore pony club polo shirts for horse riding in the ‘70s and ‘80s. The collar and placket are a slam dunk for my body type, giving me the structure that I crave around my shoulder neck points and narrow shoulders. My long neck loves the coverage of the collar, which I pop when it’s relatively stiff. Polo tops are a magical fit most of the time, so it’s no wonder I’m fond of them.

I have two knitwear versions at the moment that have been fab for Spring. A short sleeved version in ink blue from COS, and a patterned bubblegum pink with longer sleeves from Scotch & Soda. The fits are fluid and welted. They work well worn over or semi-tucked over jeans, utility pants and dressier pants. I always wear them with my chunky pearl necklaces with a few of the top buttons undone. The pearls add glam and a dressy integrity to the polo.

Although on-trend, polo tops are classics, which is another reason I like them. I’m back to wearing all sorts of classic tops this year because the trends are against me, so it’s fab timing that this classic is having a fashion moment. I hope to add some versions for high Summer, and cold weather too.

Over to you. What’s your take on the polo top?

Coach 1941 Fitted Polo Top

FUZZI Camo Polo

Ten Reasons to Wear Bralettes

A bralette is a bra without wires, moulded cups, or much compression. Some resemble sports bras, but without the shock absorbing support. Bralettes are designed to be easy-going, lightweight and comfortable. They tend to create a flatter and more spread-out lift under clothing, as opposed to the round, high and perky lift an underwire bra gives you. The collection below shows a good assortment of bralettes, which are the styles YLF forum members enjoy wearing. They’ve been tried and tested with good results.

Our Team Bra versus Team Jiggle poll revealed that many women wear bralettes instead of bras either exclusively, frequently or occasionally. This surprised me since I have very few clients and friends who wear bralettes, and I don’t wear them either. I thoroughly enjoy wearing pretty bras with underwire and lots of structure so bralettes aren’t on my radar. This is not the case for others, who enjoy or prefer wearing bralettes for one or more of the following reasons:

  1. Daytime Comfort: The lack of compression, ultra softness of the fabric, and zero wire is a lot more comfortable than a regular bra with structured extras. Some have chosen to wear bralettes exclusively for this reason.
  2. Nighttime Comfort: Some wear regular bras out in public, but switch to bralettes at home for lounging, sleeping, gardening, housework, hanging with family, or working from home. The bralette offers just enough coverage and freedom without full-on braless jiggle and exposure.
  3. Travel Comfort: Some reserve bralettes for plane travel because the straps and hooks of regular bras ride up, chafe, and dig into the skin after sitting in a plane seat for several hours.
  4. Breast Sensitivity: Extreme breast and nipple sensitivity is bad news in a regular bra. The ultra soft bralette is just the ticket by providing forgiving and gentle protection.
  5. Outfit Accessory: Decorative bralettes are dead right to wear with low-cut tops, low-cut armholes or sheer tops by providing coverage and just enough support.
  6. Bra Break: The engineered support of a regular bra when you’re larger in the bust can create dents on the shoulders, which is quite heavy going. Wearing a bralette from time to time gives you a break without braless exposure.
  7. Bra Saving: Some wear bralettes to save their expensive bras from wearing out too fast. This is especially true for those who perspire a lot in hot and humid weather.
  8. Easy Care: Some prefer the wash care of a bralette because they can be thrown in the washer and dryer with ease. Bras with underwire on the other hand generally need a little more laundry care.
  9. Cooler in Hot Weather: Apparently bralettes are more ventilating than regular bras, which makes them fab if you run warm, have regular hot flashes, or it’s extremely hot weather.
  10. Shapes a Very Small Bust: A bralette can provide a nicer shape than a regular bra when you have a very small bust.

You don’t need to be small in cup size to effectively wear a bralette. Brands like Cosabella, Torrid and Aerie provide a large assortment of sizes and styles, and chances are high you’ll find one that fits if you like the idea of a bralette.

Black Lace Racerback Bralette

Roundups

Comfy White Sandals

My Summer top picks for white footwear.

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Cute, Casual and Comfy

This week's top picks in tops, toppers, bottoms, dresses and shoes.

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Better than Basic

An assortment of tops, dresses and shoes make this week's top picks list.

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Assorted Items

Lots of blue, some green, and a good amount of dressy in this week’s top picks.

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Neutral Spring

An assortment of top picks in versatile neutrals for transitional weather.

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Hints of Spring

Some raincoats, blouses, shoes, jackets and a necklace that are top picks right now.

Read More

Reflecting on Dad

I was a Mummy’s girl, and my older brother was a Dad’s boy. This is how it was for as long as I can remember. I wanted to hang out and do things with Mum, while my brother was all about doing things with Dad. I was that little girl who relentlessly climbed all over her Mum so that she could always be close to her. My brother was the opposite. Dad worked long hours, and my brother couldn’t wait to spend the weekend with him.

When my Mum died 20 years ago, my relationship with my Dad changed. We grew closer as the years went by, and today I’m as close to my Dad as I ever was to my Mum.

My Dad and I have many differences. He speaks gently, softly, and not very much. I have a loud voice, and to quote my Dad, “Angélique is a great talker, and cannot whisper.” I’m fiery, extroverted, and very social. My Dad is mellow, introverted, a loner, and the King of understatement. He NEVER exaggerates. He will tell you things precisely as they are, or downplay them. As a chartered accountant, he’s a numbers and books person, and I am neither. Dad has a knack for languages and I don’t. Dad is a night owl, and I’m a morning person. Where I’m bouncing with energy, my Dad is reserved. I LOVE shopping, and Dad has always viewed it as punishment.

We also have some strong similarities. We are both hard working, disciplined, organized and tidy. We are global citizens who enjoy travelling and living in different countries. We are similarly fussy, practical, prompt, independent, stubborn, and set in our ways. We really look after our things, keeping them as pristine as possible. We enjoy outstanding food, both at home and in restaurants. We have an extremely sweet tooth. Cake, biscuits, ice cream, chocolate, pastries, dessert — we love it all, at any time of the day. We are house-proud and homebodies, thriving in a cosy atmosphere at home. We love dogs and horses.

At 87 and living alone in the Netherlands since Mum passed away, my Dad is a uniform dresser with a very minimal wardrobe. He’s not into fashion, but enjoys looking classically casual and dapper if someone helps him shop and put his outfits together. That used to be my Mum, and now it’s me. He’s very smiley, which matches the way he dresses. He has always been fond of wearing happy colours and hectic checks. To wear orange, coral, bright green, bright blue, yellow, and all shades of red feels very normal and makes him happy. Dark blue, chocolate and cognac are his black, and tans and stones are his white. Dad wears red specs like I do, which he chose on his own.

He has an appreciation for aesthetics, and for the styles of others who dress well to his eye. He has strong opinions on what he thinks looks stylish. He’s quick to compliment others about their outfits, especially when they wear the colours he likes. He is the most gentle and charming man I know.

I visit my Dad regularly and feel fortunate to be able to do that. Here’s an old photo of us in the Netherlands 16 years ago, before YLF started. This was my first trip to see him after we moved to Seattle from France.

2003

This photo is recent, taken in April 2019 on the same street in my Dad’s hometown of Velp. Dad had all sorts of nice things to say about my colourful outfit because he likes bright colours! That’s why I make sure I wear them when I’m with him, along with skirts and dresses, which are Dad’s favourite.

2019

We at YLF wish all Dads, including Dads who are no longer with us, a happy and peaceful Father’s Day.

Outfit Formula: Casual Summer Palazzo Pants

The palazzo pant trend is going down well with my more casual clients who prefer wearing pants to dresses, skirts and shorts when the weather is too warm for jeans. For those who don’t like to tuck and semi-tuck tops, three of the four examples here showcase untucked tops with palazzos.

Aside from the blue, the palettes are earthy, but feel free to choose any palette in solids or patterns. Sport palazzos at a length and level of volume that works best for you. Shorter or longer, fuller or less flared, it’s all good. Personally, I prefer the visual effect of extra long and full palazzos, but shorter lengths and less voluminous widths are more practical.

1. Earthy Ease

This is the easiest of the four to pull together. Combine a pair of palazzos with a tank or shell top and flat sandals, and you’re done. This is a great formula for short-waisted body types with long leg lines because of its torso-lengthening sensibility. Petites can absolutely wear the look if the top is not too long.

Peruvian Connection Sojourn Palazzo Pants

2. Crisp, Fluid & Sporty

This is a more preppy version and my favourite of the three. Combine palazzo pants that are structured at the waist with a fluid shirt or button-through blouse. Semi-tuck the front or side and scrunch the sleeves to give the outfit some shape or structure. Finish things off with white, tan, blush or metallic sneakers and statement earrings.

Anthropologie Anika Knit Wide-Leg Pants

3. Structured Pretty

Combine a tailored peplum top with a pleated pair of palazzos. The fitted peplum adds ample structure to voluminous palazzos. Finish off the look with casual slides or mules and a straw or embroidered bag. The heels on the slides and the necklace add a dressy component to the look.

Anthropologie Delano Knit Wide Leg Pants

4. Boho Flair

Combine a boho-lite blouse or knitted top with a pair of palazzos. Keeping the top relatively short lengthens the leg line from the hips upward. The suede pumps here are on the dressier side, but the fabrics of the pants and top and straw bag keep things casual. The length and width of these palazzos can be treacherous but they’re awfully striking and dramatic in motion. Please walk slowly when you wear them this long and wide!

Free People FP One Aloha Printed Wide-Leg Pants