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Hallie Abrams

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Target, Take Me Away…

When in doubt, do a Target run, right? I remember when my kiddos were little, it would be my escape. Like my version of a Calgon bath. Remember those commercials that aired during Love Boat? That was me, walking the aisles of Target alone! And being able to get clothes and food and pharmacy and lightbulbs, and home decor, and dog food all in one place. It was indulgent, relaxing and productive all at the same time.

Now when I have Zoom fatigue, and it’s too cold out to take a walk, I’ll roam the virtual aisles of Target. And you know what I’ve recently found? Fabulous Zoom ready tops for under $40! Yup!!

I’ve had a few clients looking at add a few fun pieces to their Zoom outfit rotations (and at the same time not spend too much). And my virtual Target run hit the mark.  I’m sharing a pretty well curated list of the best pieces to get from Target right now. And they’re all $40 or under (and are $20 or $25!) Ya gotta love that!

Zoom Outfit Fatigue..

Trends – LOVE ‘EM? HATE ‘EM?

Let’s start by dissecting the word “trend” – truthfully I despise the word. It’s polarizing. It can be interpreted very positively, as a status symbol, something to strive for. And conversely, as fleeting, superficial and trivial. In my humble opinion, neither definition is completely correct when discussing fashion trends.

When I do a new client intake, I always ask where that person wants to be on the “trendy” spectrum. It’s an important part of a style self evaluation. Do they see themselves on the cusp of a trend, or completely classic? As with anything, it’s a matter of degrees as well as comfort level. My goal is for clients to look and feel true to themselves, yet still modern. Not as if the latest issue of In-Style Magazine threw up on them, but also not like they’re stuck in a different decade. Current, timely, modern – that’s the style objective.

How to Approach Trends

Sometimes a small change can make a big difference. That’s how I like to approach trends. I spend a whole lot of time perusing fashion magazines, street style blogs, runway shows and retail websites – all the while looking for two key factors that help me assess if a trend has staying power or is just a flash in the pan…

New Years Sale Shopping

Happy New Year, you guys! I don’t know if this is just wishful thinking but, it feels like we’re maybe, kinda, sorta, possibly getting closer to a place we can wear cute clothes again… Fingers and toes crossed! So, in the hopes of manifesting more social interactions (gosh, I miss people), I’m looking for some exciting things to pep up the old wardrobe. And what better than New Year’s sale shopping?

There are some CRAZY sale shopping savings happening right now (like up to 70% off!) So, consider this my cliff notes version (oh I really just dated myself – I believe they’re now called spark notes) to the sale stuff that’s out there and that might make a nice addition and help zhuzh up your looks.

There’s not a lot of rhyme or reason to these picks – just pieces that spoke to me. And in my experience, that’s the best way to shop a sale. It’s challenging to go in to a sale (or a thrift or consignment store for that matter) with a specific shopping list, because you’ll never quite know what you’ll find. For folks with shiny object syndrome like me, it’s a blast, and a treasure hunt in it’s truest form. But for those that like a purpose and are uncomfortable veering off course, sale shopping can be overwhelming. Thus, the handy, dandy cliff notes … and some tips.

Tips for Shopping a Sale

Just because it’s hard to shop a sale with a specific list, there can still be a plan of attack. Yes, have items in mind that you want and need to perk up your wardrobe. But if there is a piece that makes your heart soar, that’s not on your list, take time to consider it, thoughtfully.

How to Shop a Sale

Before you hit “add to cart”, ask yourself these questions:

Fashion Rules

Fashion rules. Some love them. Some hate them. To me, it doesn’t matter if you follow them or if you don’t. If you’re happy and comfortable with what you’re wearing and how you’re wearing it, THAT IS WHAT MATTERS. In fact, that is all that matters. But, some people just like a rule. It provides parameters and makes it easier to take on something that feels challenging. So, if you like a good rule here or there, this is for you. If you’re a rebel, a rule-breaker, or just quite content with what you’re wearing, you can stop reading now, and I’ll catch you next time. No hard feelings, promise.

How to Get Your Outfits Over the Finish Line

I hear this often with new 1:1 wardrobe styling clients… “Hallie, when I get dressed, my outfits are 80% of the way there, and then something goes wrong. It’s hard to pinpoint where. I like the pieces separately, but together not as much. Something is off, but I can’t seem to fix it. And buying more isn’t helping.” If you don’t know what the problem is, it’s hard to correct, right? And just ignoring that unsettled feeling or buying more clothes doesn’t fix it either. So, coming at you another (hopefully) helpful fashion rule, to take the guesswork out of getting dressed.

The Rule of One..

December Hot List

When I publish a hot list as my weekly post, It can feel like a cop-out.  I’m not saying it’s rational thinking. Most likely, it’s coming from a place of insecurity. The struggle to find creative inspiration these days is REAL.  I fill my creative cup through travel, people watching, theater, and overall human interaction. All of which are sorely lacking in my life these days. Thanks, Covid!  Really, I’m not complaining, at least I’m working really hard not to. I am grateful beyond measure for my health and the health of those I love. But the isolation is taking a toll. I feel boring and I’m bored.

It’s the same feeling I had as a kid when I stayed home sick from school for more than a few days. By the end, when my friends would call to give updates on the school drama I missed, they’d ask what was going on with me. And my response was like… umm nothing. On General Hospital this happened and on Phil Donahue, this happened, but to me, NOTHING HAS HAPPENED. I’ve been sleeping, reading, and sitting on the couch. Boring! Yup, that’s exactly how I feel right now – except I’m the one doing the cooking and cleaning and there are more TV channels to report on (the jury is still out on if that’s a good or bad thing).

Basically, the majority of my inspo this week (actually this year) is coming from the small screen – when you see my hot list picks, you’ll understand!!

Why is it so hard to buy men gifts? And what do they REALLY want?

Those might be the billion-dollar questions right there. Men are notoriously difficult to find gifts for. The answer, while, I admit, somewhat of a sweeping generalization, is twofold.

First, I think many men can be uncomfortable with the idea of receiving gifts. They view themselves as the givers, the providers. I am not saying that mindset is right (or wrong, for that matter), but it’s a perspective into the why. Couple that mentality with difficulty articulating what they want, and you’ve got a perfect storm for a hard-to-gift guy.

Second, and possibly the key reason for this challenging dynamic – when a man is passionate about something, be it a hobby, an experience, or even technology, they tend to dive deep, research it and buy it for themselves!! Fantastic for them; they get exactly what they want. But bad for us. We gift-givers are left confused, scrambling, and feeling clueless. 

What’s the Perfect Gift for Men?

A favorite gift will be something they’ll use every day and would never think to get for themselves.

What to Wear for the Holidays at Home – Outfit Inspiration

I mean, who the F knows that the holidays are going to be like this year. Thanksgiving was waaaaaay intimate over here (hello 3 people and a 15 lb turkey!). But it was still a holiday and I think there is something to be said for getting out of my grungy sweats and putting on my “dress up” sweats, or even a pair of jeans to make it feel like a day that’s more special than others. Holiday outfit inspiration is desperately needed this year to help make the holidays feel like, well, holidays.

So, whatever holiday(s) you’re celebrating – Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, New Years’. And however many people you’re celebrating it with. I’m sharing a few outfit ideas to help make the days feel a little out of the ordinary.

It’s About the Outfit Inspiration, Not About Having to Buy New Things

I also want to keep in mind that while all of the items I’m showing and linking are available in stores, I never want people to feel pressured to buy. Hopefully, these serve as holiday outfit inspiration and you can re-create similar looks from pieces you already have in your closet. I mean, I do that all the time when I’m feeling uninspired. In fact, I keep a folder on my phone of screenshots from outfits that appeal to me. And I encourage my clients (especially new clients) to do the same.

A Stylist’s Recipe for Mixing Patterns Like a Pro

How to successfully mix patterns is a question that comes up ALL THE TIME with both female and male clients. It is probably because pattern mixing is one thing that, when done correctly, adds an inordinate amount of interest to an outfit. And when done wrong, well, it can be a total disaster.

Some people can naturally do it. They throw on this and that, and it looks effortless and flawless. It can seem like those people are everywhere, especially with the highlight reel of life that is social media. But in reality, those that can throw it on and go are few and far between.

How to Mix Patterns 
Make it Look Effortless

Spoiler alert – most things that look effortless and flawless are the exact opposite. There is usually a whole lot of effort that goes into making something look effortless…

Hard to Get Holiday Gifts

Thanksgiving is this week, and my inbox is getting flooded with holiday gift guides. Is yours? Do you even find them beneficial? I feel like they all kind of look the same these days… Let me know. I’m happy to do one if it’s helpful to you all. Even as a “professional shopper”  finding the right gift for the right person, can be kind of a struggle. And this year, it’s slightly more challenging. Just like 2020, gift-giving this year is going to look a little different.

The lens I’m using for gift giving is that it’s not a race to accumulate more, but instead, to find a way to let the people you love, remember they are loved. Yea, I know that’s how it always should be, however, sometimes we all need a reminder. Myself included.

The Two Gifts I’m Craving

Obviously, the most important gifts are not material – health and happiness. This year those are of utmost importance. But, if we’re talking gifts on a material level, and there is something nice about giving AND receiving gifts. Then there are two specific gifts that I’m craving right now. Many of my personal shopping/wardrobe clients are too. Best of all, these two gifts work perfectly together and will be used often in 2020 and beyond!

Casual Jewelry – The Kind You Wear 24/7

The Importance of Shopping Local

When everyone first went on Covid lockdown, there was a meme floating around the internet. It went something like this: “Remember all of the local small businesses that you’ve asked for years and years to donate and sponsor your sports clubs, school events, organizations, etc.? It’s time to support them. They’re the heart of our town.”

Even in the best of times, there’s a motivation to shop local. And in tough times like these, shopping locally becomes an absolute necessity. Dare I say a community obligation. I’m not suggesting you buy things you don’t want or need out of guilt. Instead, my plea is to try and shop here before choosing to spend your dollars online.

Shopping Local Takes Some Effort

Shopping locally can be categorized under things we all agree are essential but don’t always do. A practice that, in theory, we want to embrace. But when it comes to putting it into action, compliance levels are iffy. I liken it to recycling, eating fruits and vegetables, or even using clean beauty. We know it would be better if we were diligent, making the habit part of our regular routines, but more often than not, we don’t.

Well, at least I don’t. I don’t know about you…