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Hallie Abrams

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Who Doesn’t Love a Shopbop Sale?

This started as one of those quick posts. A down and dirty roundup of the best white t-shirts. And then I realized it was the Shopbop sale. And not only do I love me a good sale, but the Shopbop sale is ALWAYS a good one. If you’re a long-time reader you might remember I snagged the Lela Rose dress I wore for my daughter Maggie’s Bat-Mitzvah at this sale a few years ago. And that dress is still one of my most favorite pieces in my closet.

So, next week you can look for the best white t-shirts round up. And this week are my picks from the iconic Shopbop SALE!

This is how the sale works this time around… the SALE ENDS APRIL 16 AT 12:59pm (PACIFIC TIME)

Spring 2021 Hot List Favorites

Welcome to the Spring 2021 Hallie’s Hot List! Compiling this list brings me such joy! It allows me to share some of my favorite things that might not fall directly into the category of wardrobe stuff. I’ve been running these lists for a while now… and I’m always curious about what items you’ve plucked from the list and how you feel about them. Please share either in the comments or tag me on social media to let me know. I feel like one of the all-time favorites is the collapsable water hose! And since spring is OTW, it definitely makes sense to mention it again, because you know, watering plants, flowers and all…

So, without further adieu – the latest from the spring hot list

 The Search for the Perfect White Jeans

It’s that time of year. The weather is warming up and we’re all beginning to think about our “summer” wardrobes.  And for many, that means the eternal search for the perfect white jean. BTW, this quest happens every year. This year it’s compounded by the fact that many of us didn’t get dressed or go out or shop in 2020. So we’re out of practice.

Summer clothes are a happy place for some people. However, for others, it is a stressful season for getting dressed. The weather is hot (hello sweat). And summer clothes are more revealing. So those (myself included)  that feel more comfortable camouflaging our perceived body imperfections in darker colors and layers are out of luck. Not really, but it can for sure feel that way.

A Warm Weather Staple

White jeans are a warm-weather wardrobe staple. They feel “summery” because they’re white. Yet they still cover. So that’s good. BUT finding the perfect white jeans is like the search for the holy grail.

And add to the equation the fact that white jeans need to be replaced more often than their blue denim counterparts, and we feel like we’re constantly searching for the perfect pair of white jeans!!

When to Replace Your White Jeans

White jeans, like white t-shirts, require more frequent replenishment. White is crisp and bright. It goes with everything. And it also yellows and stains more easily. When it loses its luster, it is time to say goodbye. Refreshing white clothes with OxiClean or Clorox is a good idea, but be careful. Those products break down the clothing fibers and then the pieces get holes or just look worn out.

Another white jeans issue is that they’re not extraordinarily forgiving. So gaining a pound or two (or ten) factors into the replacement factor as well.

So needless to say, every woman I know is always looking for “that” pair of white jeans.

How To Find Your Perfect Pair

The Ultimate Guide To Pairing Shoes With Different Pant Styles

Remember last time, we chatted about the longevity of skinny jeans? And the fact that some newer pant styles, with wider legs, are making their way onto the scene? And do you also remember that I said because of this shift, there’s an ongoing conflict about what shoe or boot to pair with these wider leg styles?

Well, this week, I’m addressing that very issue. It’s a subject that’s been coming up over and over again with clients, blog readers, and social media followers too. And for good reason. Shoe and pant combinations are an area many people struggle with. Even before the shift toward wider pant styles, it was challenging to know what shoes to pair with pants.

When the pants and footwear of an outfit are out of sync it feels off. It’s like having Froot Loops and filet mignon at the same meal. On their own, or in a different combination, they’re fantastic. Together, not so much. There’s an incompatibility.

Why is the shoe/pant situation so difficult? Well, for a few reasons…

Hallie Abrams, The Wardrobe Consultant wears the Madewell, Ruffle wrap midi skirt in Spring Fling, two ways

Let’s Get Dressed Up – Spring Dresses for Passover + Easter

What a long, strange trip it’s been… With the one-year anniversary of the “two-week lockdown” to “flatten the curve”, it feels at once like both the longest and shortest year in history. Last year at this time, there was no thought of spring dresses. I was struggling to wrap my head around what quarantine meant in regards to the spring holidays (and life in general). And happily, this year, there’s hope.

There literally is an energy shift I’m feeling. Are you feeling it too? The weather is getting warmer, vaccines are becoming more available, people are joyful, and looking forward to connecting again! Just in time for the spring holidays too – Passover and Easter. Plus, the CDC said fully vaccinated grandparents can hug their grandchildren. So now we have a good reason to get dressed and celebrate!

Spring Dresses for Passover, Easter, Mother’s Day, Graduation, and more

For many years I’ve written a post on spring dresses for these holidays ( knowing that type of dress can be worn again for Mother’s Day, Graduation, bridal, and baby showers). There’s something about getting a new dress for a holiday that makes it feel extra special. Maybe it’s a throwback to childhood and going shopping with my mom and grandma for Passover dresses.

When I was little I’d need a new dress because I was “growing like a weed”. And the previous years’ dress was too short. This year, I’ve also grown, but not in the vertical direction!! So if you’re like me, and some of your favorite dresses from years past might not be fitting like they used to… don’t fret. Think of it as a time to celebrate your new size and do a little spring shopping. That’s precisely what I’m gonna do!

Are Skinny Jeans DEAD?

Oh. My. Gosh. Have you seen ALL the drama that’s happening over on TikTok? People (non-Millennial women, mainly) are in an uproar! The excitement involves the status of skinny jeans and what wearing them signifies. The basic premise is that hair parted on the side, the crying emoji, and wearing skinny jeans are all outdated (aka, for old people!!). 

I get it. As the years pass, things become classified as more in or out. And it’s the role of the younger generations to differentiate themselves from their parents and grandparents generations. It happens through music and fashion in particular. Think Elvis (and his gyrations, banned on TV) or Madonna (and her Like A Virgin tour, along with her lingerie as clothing). 

That’s evolution from an art and style standpoint. And, it’s the same reason I kind of cringe when I see my high-school hairdo (serious 80’s BIG HAIR). I’ve evolved, and (thankfully) that style no longer represents who I am. When we look at ourselves in the past, it is purposely meant to make us feel uncomfortable because that means we are continuing to grow. Evolution and progress happen from a beauty and fashion standpoint and on a human psyche level. In both hair and character, I hope that I’ve moved forward in the last 30 years. 

Evolution or not, labels sort of annoy me. Marking something “in or out” or “young or old” can be an unfair description. That being said, I do believe some styles are more modern and current the same way some styles are more flattering. Nonetheless, if it makes you feel comfortable, confident, and you like it – you should wear it! You are the ultimate maker of your own style!

But Are Skinny Jeans OUTDATED? 

Skinny jeans, are NOT outdated. Rather they’ve moved to the category of a classic style. So yes, you can keep wearing your skinnies if you like them. And I personally am keeping a few pairs in my wardrobe. However, if you’re like many of my clients and readers that are writing in saying they’re feeling ”off” when they put on the skinnies they once loved, I’d recommend adding a crop, flared, or straight leg jean to the denim repertoire. A wider leg (notice I said wider, not necessarily wide, just not skinny) is the most recent trend for ladies of all ages.

I’ve been talking about this for a while. In fact, my post from 2017 about how to wear skinny jeans but make them feel updated still rings true. In the past four years, there has been a steady shift away from skinny jeans. It doesn’t mean they are out entirely, but you’re seeing in stores and on people, jean styles other than just skinny jeans. So the time is right to add a new jean style to your denim collection.

What’s the New Rule When It Comes to Jean Style?

Spring 2021

Spring 2021 it’s here, and I’m ready for it, sort of. I have to be honest, in normal years I’d have spent weeks, even months getting my thoughts together about the upcoming season. It’s historically a process I love and one that energizes me. I look at all of the runway shows and read up on fashion editors’ trend reports.  Taking note of what retailers are showing for the season. I then scour street style to see it in action, off the runway. And I observe people, on the street, at the airport, at restaurants – like creatures in their native habitats, lol!  And THEN, I compile my lists – what is speaking to me, what I saw showing up in multiple places, what’s looking modern, and what I think real people (not models or influencers) would and could actually wear.

But this last year has been anything but normal. Some days it takes all of my reserves just to get dressed and to be pleasant (note I didn’t say nice or happy, just pleasant, as, in not a raging B word) to my family. Fashion, style, and pretty things in general, traditionally lift my spirits. But, this last year has been a challenge for all of us, and hitting the pandemic 12-month mark, leaves spring 2021 feeling like a conundrum to me…

Feeling Hopeful, but Confused for Spring 2021

On one hand, I’m hopeful. The days are longer. The weather a bit milder, at least this week. And the vaccines are providing optimism. A glimmer. We can go out and get dressed in the near future!

Yet, on the other hand, it’s confusing. When we go out, what will going out look like? Will the clothes I have even still fit? Have styles kept evolving this past year even though we’ve all been wearing lounge sets? Will I even remember how to get dressed?

To put it in perspective, these are questions some my clients have shared. And if I’m being authentic, they’ve crossed my mind as well. Dressing up is a happy place for me, not typically one of worry. So for those that have a complicated relationship with clothes and getting dressed, this season can feel like getting dressed stress, on steroids!

Don’t Worry, I’ve Got You

How to Wear Any Color and Look Good Too!

Let’s start by addressing the question: Can I only wear specific colors? The answer is: You absolutely, positively, can wear any color you want and look great doing so! Questions revolving around color are THE most asked questions from readers, Instagram and Facebook followers, and real-life styling clients… “what color should I wear?” “what colors should I stay away from?” “can I wear red (or yellow or pink or olive or any color you’re unsure about)?”

People are seemingly consumed with what colors they can and cannot wear. And honestly, it doesn’t need to be that hard. Maybe it’s because people had their colors done during the color analysis craze of the 1980s and categorized to be a spring, summer, winter, or fall. That assessment then dictated ALL the colors they would or would not wear for the foreseeable future.

Trigger Warning – Unpopular Opinion Alert

In my opinion, the whole concept of the right colors has become just too complicated. It doesn’t need to be, and I’d like to suggest throwing it all out the window. I might get some hate mail about this. Or color analysis devotees sending me dm’s to say how having their colors analyzed was a life-changing event for them. And, if it’s done right by you, that’s great – keep doing it. 

But the majority of people I see are hindered rather than empowered by their color category – the rules they’re trying to follow have made things more complicated, not easier. And that’s just backward. It’s frustrating to see. So if it’s frustrating for me to witness, it must be even more disheartening to experience.  Please understand, this is coming from me!! I’m both a rule follower AND a rule creator (cough cough, The Rule of One, The Third Piece Rule, and The 2 Out of 3 Rule, to name a few). So it’s not that I’m anti-rules. Instead, I’m anti-complications. 

Don’t Box Yourself In…

Dr. Diana Ponsky – Such a Girl Crush!

If you follow me on Instagram you’ve possibly noticed, in my stories, I’ve been taking you guys behind the scenes at my appointments with Dr. Diana Ponsky, Facial Plastic Surgeon. No, I’m not having surgery, at least not yet. But never say never. I’m not against it, and I’m not for it. I’m pro you feeling like the best version of yourself. The choice has to be yours, and yours alone. And if botox, fillers or surgery can help you achieve that (and it’s healthy and fiscally responsible for you to partake – I say go for it). And if it’s not your thing, then don’t.

But what I’ve found is that there is a lot of confusion and uncertainty surrounding the whole subject. Maybe even a stigma. And I hate that. So I want to open up the conversation, and take a peek behind the curtain.

Luckily my friend, client and personal doctor, Diana Ponsky, MD, FACS, has agreed to join me in an ongoing series about all things Facial Rejuvenation. Monthly we are going to sit down and have a chat (on Instagram – so be sure to follow us both there – The Wardrobe Consultant and Dr Diana Ponsky) where questions will be answered (in plain, everyday, understandable layman’s terms) and pros and cons discussed. We Weill even cover pricing and pain and recovery times. I’ll take you along as Diana assess the best path for me and my face. And as she  performs some of my procedures  too.

Olive Oil and Creams can Only do So Much

Ok, let’s get real… I love and adore JLo, however, I’m actually kind of perturbed that she claims she’s NEVER had ANYTHING done. I’m sorry, but she does not look that way from just using olive oil on her skin! I call BS on that. BIG TIME!

Dr. Diana Ponsky Tells it Like it Is

Dr. Diana Ponsky and I have had some frank discussions about celebs ( both those that look subtly refreshed and those that look like a plastic, overdone caricature.) For example Diana suggested adding a smidge of filler to a part of my face. My first reaction was NO WAY! I want to look slimmer, not puffier. But as she explained, one of the reasons a well known female, at 80 years old, looks so vibrant is because she has fullness in that region.  Diana was able to help me visualize and understand it and then  I was like “sign me up!” BTW, when I tried to explain The who and why, I suck. So, I’m asking Diana to do a quick video explanation – basically how she explained it to me. Look on my IG story, Wednesday (or it will be saved under the Dr. Diana Ponsky highlight.) 

So Girl Crush Worthy

Anyway that’s just one of the many reasons, I have a big, old girl crush on Diana. She’s warm and sweet. Crazy smart and talented yet very humble. She cares deeply for her patients and about her profession. And, especially, when we are talking about something like plastic surgery, she has an incredible eye and the ability to make subtle tweaks that have a great impact.

Another Easy Outfit Formula

The feedback I’m receiving from all of you, dear readers (did you catch the Bridgerton allusion there?) is that you LOVE these fashion rules! And I couldn’t be happier! However, there is a chance I may eventually run out of formulas to share. But until that time comes, I’ll keep cranking them out as fast as my mind can process.

The truth is that these fashion rules are somewhat intuitive to me. They’re second nature. I see the various elements of an outfit and what needs to be added or taken away. I don’t think a lot about it; it just IS until I’m working with a client and need to step back and explain. 

When I take that step back, out of my very active brain (it works kind of like a slot machine as I’m searching for outfit combos – a great outfit is like three cherries) and simplify the steps or reasons, I’m able to create the rules. No, I’m not saying this is fashion for dummies (I hate that name, it’s so condescending) – but the breakdown often makes it easier to digest. 

Dressing is Just an Optical Illusion

As I’ve said before and will probably repeat a zillion times, dressing is the ultimate optical illusion. No one, NO ONE, not even Jennifer Aniston, has a perfect figure. But what people that seem to have an ideal figure do, is use clothes to their advantage to create the appearance of balance and proportion.

These outfit formulas are the foundations for creating visual harmony and making most looks work. They’re the infrastructure of the ensemble. Once these basic formulas feel comfortable, and if you’re in the mood to step it up, you can build upon them to make outfits even more multifaceted and exciting.

When working with clients, I often refer to outfits as mild, medium, and spicy. The same elements and ingredients apply – but just like in a recipe, you are more heavy handed with some aspects if you want to get really spicy. The 2 out of 3 rule is a foundational outfit formula. Consider it mild in the clothing/food analogy. But once this principle is mastered, it’s easy-peasy to add some spice.