Here’s a little known fact about me: I worked my way through my junior & senior years of college in retail.
Yes, yours truly was folding, hanging, stacking and ringing at the AMERICAN EAGLE OUTFITTERS at the local Ithaca mall just outside the Cornell University campus. While my career in fashion retail did not last that long, my love for impeccably organized closets and the perfect denim shorts did.
As long as I’ve been working in the fashion and styling business, skinny jeans have reigned supreme. No matter how good the new and unique denim styles are (and there are many!), you ladies sure do love your skinnies.
After years of being confined to wearing suiting 80% of the time, I relish in my current lifestyle and my ability to wear jeans ALL. THE. TIME. Black, blue, boyfriend, skinny, cropped, flare, fringe — you name it and I probably wear it!
Out of all of those pairs, a single style need just a little bit more attention than all of the others — white denim. Simply by force of nature (and my remarkable ability to spill coffee), my white jeans are the ones I probably end up replacing most often.
With summer just around the corner, I’ve been wearing my white jeans more than ever — you know, YOU CAN WEAR WHITE YEAR ROUND! Luckily for me (and for you), there are so many flattering styles available this season.
Here are just a few…
(click on the images below for pricing + retailer details!)
Lastly, here’s a shopping score — SHOPBOP (one of my favorite sources for designer denim) is having a surprise sale running for only 3 days! You can get up to 40% OFF some of the best denim styles — like these HIGH RISE FLARES or these CROPPED SKINNIES, along with a bunch of non-white, traditional denim options. Make sure to take a browse through their site — I guarantee you’ll find something you’ll love.
For the past few years my eyes have been assaulted by what may be the A#1 style offense and what I’ve seen cannot be unseen. Even with all of the YOU TUBE rants and viral images and videos, it seems that people choose not to listen.
If in the small chance you are one of those people, let me make this clear:
Leggings are NOT pants.
Nope. No way. Absolutely not. Not even the “thick” and expensive LULULEMON styles.
1. A workout essential that wicks away moisture from the body while providing mobility and support.
2. A base layer on which outfits are built and layered upon.
3. A clothing alternative for those days when you remain in the privacy of your own home.
You might be asking why I’m so vehemently against and enraged by the abundance of leggings in public. Well, in all honesty I have no desire to see your bumps, jiggles, pink lace underpants, or worse. Yup, lady who decided not to wear underpants — your ObGyn and I have had the same view. It ain’t pretty.
No matter how thin, toned and in-shape you are those lycra-spandex, stretchy, black leggings look awful. You could have the pristine bootie of a Michelangelo masterpiece, like a ripe peach. Nope, still bad.
So what’s a girl to do? Well, if a body conscious, slim-lined look is what you’re going for, here are some appropriate alternatives that will give you the look you desire and get you off my style sh*t list.
SHOP THE LOOK:
Here are some important style notes for you to keep in mind when shopping for black legging-type pants:
1. Look for thicker twill or ponte fabric blends which will keep everything pulled in and smooth. Both materials have some substance to them and will not become translucent when you bend over.
2. Denim, leather or suede are great substantial alternatives for leggings and will add texture and visual interest to your outfits.
3. When purchasing legging-type pants, look for pockets. They can be real working pockets, or simply a visual detail, but they immediately upgrade the legging to pant status.
4. Aim for a slightly higher rise. Super low rise pants are not only out of style, they are just not as comfortable and make muffin-top and exposed butt-crack inevitable. You don’t want either of those.
5. When styling legging-type pants, always consider proportions. If you are tight and slim on the bottom, you want to look for a fuller, looser top to balance everything out. Tunic length blouses, sweaters, tees or shirts look best. You want whatever top you choose to be at least hip length.
Actually, quite the contrary — the “it” denim of the year is actually quite old and familiar. The anti-trend trend. Turns out the moms of the 70’s and 80’s had it right all along with their high waisted, straight-legged Levi’s jeans.
Premium denim has been an exploding category of contemporary women’s wear since the early 2000’s when Seven for All Mankind made its big splash into the pretty small jean pool. Since that time, dozens of premium denim focused brands have emerged giving us almost limitless options and larger credit card bills at the end of the month.
When I first started seeing Levi’s reemerge among the $200+ premium denim crowd, I almost had to do a double take and zoom in on the street style images. Could it be true?! Can the iconic Levi’s jeans that we abandoned so many years ago be making its big comeback!?
The answer is yes… with a little help of some friends by the name of RE/DONE. This little luxury brand that could is more of a movement to restore individuality to the luxury fashion space, to maintain sustainability and to keep heritage brands, like Levi’s alive.
What’s more individual and true to your personal style than your favorite pair of jeans?
If you’re not in the market to shell out the cash for Re/Done’s vintage revivals, why not go back to the source! Levi’s has updated many of their cuts and styles to reflect this move away from the skinny jean and embrace a woman’s figure — waist, butt and all. Better yet, the Levi’s price point is appealing to any woman, no matter how large or small your budget.
What do I like best about this shift in denim?
As a stylist, I love that denim no longer becomes an aspirational item focused on a label itself. Instead, the aspiration shifts to the styling… because who doesn’t want be that effortlessly, chic woman who looks as though she can take anything off the rack (no matter the price) and make the look her own?
Now that is something to aspire to.
SHOP THE LOOK:
Oh, one last note — for you deal hunters out there, EBAY is an amazing source for vintage Levi’s jeans. If you have the time and the chops to stalk some online listings, you could be lucky enough to score an amazing pair of vintage Levi’s for as little as $10.
I was doing a bit of reading (I like to call it research!) this past weekend on the rise of premium denim. More specifically, how premium denim is perhaps the top bestseller when it comes to the secondary resale market.
For those of you interested, J BRAND and FRAME denim were the two brands most in demand!
We all love our jeans and I can’t help but love mine a little more when I realized that I could be making some serious cash when I was was done loving them. This is all good news and further incentive to break out of the skinny jean rut and expand our premium denim horizons to some new styles. One in particular– raw hem denim, has caught my eye and given me major style inspiration.
What exactly IS raw hem denim? Well, it’s exactly as described. It’s a jean with unfinished bottom hems, generally found on straight cut styles. Cut straight across or fringed, this tweak on a basic denim style has been all the rage among the fashion set. When worn with heels or booties, it gives an outfit an easy, effortless feel to it. When matched with more casual flats or sneakers, it elevates the look and adds a dose of sartorial interest. Either way, you can’t go wrong!
Just take a look at some of these street style images and you just might catch the raw hem fashion bug as well…
Jenna Lyons opts for the baggy boyfriend style paired with a very feminine asymmetric coat (THIS one is awesome + on sale!) and MULTI-STRAP PUMPS. The contrast in style keeps the look from looking too sloppy!
Danielle Bernstein of fashion blog, WE WORE WHAT gave a basic skinny jean ensemble a boost with a simple raw edge on her denim. The small hint of ankle makes all of the difference.
What’s best about this denim trend is that in addition to the denim trade-in via consignment (THREDUPis an online favorite, while THE STYLE LOOP is a great local NE Ohio option!), you can take matters into your own hands to repurpose an existing pair of long forgotten jeans. It’s about as easy a DIY as they come, but if you need some extra guidance from a pro, definitely check out this STEP-BY-STEP RAW HEM DENIM TUTORIAL.
If DIY is not your style, just keep scrolling to find a raw hem denim option that works best for you!
First off, you’re probably wondering what the h*ll a denim pinafore is!
Straight from WIKIPEDIA (the expert of everything): a pinafore is a sleeveless dress intended to be worn over a top or blouse. A key difference between a pinafore and a jumper dress is that the pinafore is open in the back.
Next, you might be wondering why I’m writing about this old-school style on a modern fashion blog?!
Well, THAT I can explain…
It all began with the (re)introduction of the denim overall. Yes, AGAIN. Like the word “fetch” in the movie Mean Girls, the fashion powers(I picture Anna Wintour, Zoolander, Tim Gunn and André Leon Talley all sitting together in a conference room) keep trying to make the overall thing happen. This particular attempt is less LEFT EYE LOPEZ style (I miss you TLC!) and more 70’s throwback. Regardless, it just doesn’t work for the majority of the population that’s either too old, too conservative, or not built like those 6′ models that are generally shown wearing the style. Worst of all, the overall is simply not flattering on most people. It’s one of those trends that for the most part, I just have to pass on.
…enter the denim pinafore.
It’s neutral, it’s a flattering A-line silhouette and it’s a style that is more timeless than its overall cousin. It’s also the ideal layering piece to have now in a cold-weather style arsenal, that later can be transitioned to spring/summer staple.
While the images above show a more refined take on the denim pinafore, I love the look layered over an oversized sweater or even sweatshirt! Add some athleisure-worthy sneakers (my STAN SMITH ADIDAS are my absolute favorite!) for a more casual take on the trend.
Also, the denim pinafore comes in assorted lengths from the shortest of minis, to a more conservative and fashion-forward midi length. Once you find the right pinafore for you, I promise you’ll fall in love too!
The neighborhood literally becomes a full-blown street party and it just so happens, this all went down on the hottest day of the summer. I couldn’t have been happier to spend a few hours in the comfort of THE SPOTTED OWL air conditioning with a cocktail in hand. All in, a pretty sweet “work” situation, right?!
The 90-degree temperatures and oppressive humidity outside made me think about 1) an immediate shower 2) a great hot-weather style that I will definitely be wearing before the week’s end.
Specifically, the denim mini-skirt.
Children of the 80’s — remember those denim mini’s we used to wear? Well, they’re back in a big way. The 70’s influenced Fall 2015 runway collections were full of flares, off-the-shoulder tops and yes, the denim A-line mini-skirt. This go around, the denim mini-skirt is a bit longer, with button details and a silhouette that pulls away from hips/thighs that easily flatters all body types. Whether worn with a tee and flats during the day, or dressed up with heels after dark, the denim mini-skirt will ensure you stay cool while staying in style.
The past 24 hours have been a collection of clusterf*cks.
From spilled coffee, to computer glitches, to an unusual lack of personal motivation… it’s just been an all around frustrating few days. If you can believe it, I’ve even had trouble pulling the trigger on some online purchases I’ve been hoarding in my shopping baskets (like this SKIRT & TOP coordinating set)! Since when have I ever had issues with shopping?! From what I hear, Mercury is in retrograde, so I’m just going to go ahead and blame it all on that.
Rather than focus on all of the external “noise” that causes frustration, I find that it’s best for me to quietly regroup and instead focus my attention on the effortless things that just seem to always work.
Basic, simple and minimalist, these 5 pieces have been a wardrobe lifesaver for me when I just don’t want to think or expend any extra time or mind-space on the “noise.” Even if you’re not a minimalist by nature, I think any woman can benefit from these casually cool items that never seem to go out of style.
When the universe is all out of whack, at least your style will always stay on point. Take that, Mercury.
White sneakers are the perfect solution for the days-on-the-run. In addition to the comfort factor, they’re essentially the backbone to the athliesure trend that is taking over. Whether pairing them with broken-in jeans or a tailored, cropped pant, your crisp white kicks will take your outfit up a few style notches.
These shoes may be God’s answer to your “I-feel-frumpy” moments. They’re nude, so obviously they go with EVERYTHING. Oh, have I mentioned that they can make you look taller and slimmer too? They can and they will.
One of my favorite styling mantras is “Keep your look unexpected.” By this I mean, your best looks will involve pairing a high with a low. Fancy with casual. Couture with fast fashion. However you interpret it, well-worn, broken-in denim should be involved.