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Style & Fashion

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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…

Slippers – Your Winter Style Staple

Even though this week it was 72 degrees in November, we know winter is on the way. Long, cold, dark winter. And I don’t think I’m being a fortune teller if I predict that we all will be spending more time at home this winter, than in winters past. Less going out, more staying in. Dark at 5pm. Cold and snowy. Germs floating everywhere. That’s what we can look forward to. While this scenario could sound dreadful, I’m going to re-frame it to sound cozy. A time for hibernation perhaps. So, if there’s a place in your wardrobe to invest, to really get the return on a cost per wear basis – it’s your house clothes and even more specifically your house slippers.

Because even me, an infamous shoe addict (yes, honey, I do need to pack 3 pairs of black shoes for a weekend away – they all serve a different purpose).  I tend to not change my house slippers with every outfit. It’s more of a slippers for a season or two and then they get old and grungy (and smelly too if I’m being honest – barefoot + sweat = stink) so I replace them. Usually with the exact same style – because A. I’m not that exciting and B. my slippers are more function than fashion.  But also because in the past I’ve only really worn them at night or on the weekend. But now, I’m wearing them most days, all day long. So, it’s time to shake things up a bit. The moral of the story is, I’m on the hunt for a new pair of slippers.

Think of Your Closet as The Most Valuable Real Estate in Your Home

As the seasons change, so should your closet. Do you change over your closets each season? Well, may I suggest doing an assessment of your wardrobe and/or closet purge while you’re at it? I can almost promise it’ll make getting dressed every day that much easier. 

Think of your closet as the most valuable real estate in your home – the Boardwalk and Park Place on the Monopoly board. So any items that are allowed to live there need to provide great returns. They should ideally be items that will enable you to feel good, look good, and that you reach for regularly. That means the old bridesmaid’s dress that’s hanging in the way back of your closet does not deserve to live in the high rent district.

When’s The Right Time for a Closet Changeover And Closet Purge?

I use the 50/50 rule to know when it’s time for my closet changeover…

Girls Night Out (GNO!!)

A few weeks ago I had my first, in ages, thanks to Covid, girls night out dinner with friends. We sat outside, under heaters, and next to a fire. We ate, drank, and laughed It felt amazing and normal, and amazingly normal. Boy, did I need it! And as we were discussing getting our homes ready for us to have the “night off”, the consensus was the thing that caused the most stress was deciding on what to wear for a GNO. Under normal circumstances, night out outfits can be stressful. But after 8 months of sweatpants, it’s downright exasperating.

Then with a virtual client last week we needed to focus on what to wear when she goes out with her girlfriends or on date night. She struggled with her going out looks feeling different than a typical daytime outfit, but not so overly fancy (or hoochie – her words) that it seemed she was trying too hard.

And today I received this message in my Instagram dm’s.

Hey Hallie! I am so glad I found you! Your style is everything I hope for 👏🏼 a group of friends and I are headed to Vegas in 2 weeks. And I don’t know what to wear?!?!? Do you have any posted looks that can help inspire me? I want to feel currant and sexy but not trashy 🙊

And that’s the slippery slope – wanting to look different than every day yet still appropriate for your age and environment. And I might add, also not feel dowdy.

Whenever a question comes up three times, I know it’s time to write a blog post about it!

My Simple GNO Formula…

The Conundrum of Fall Fashion This Year

I can’t believe it’s already October, and I still haven’t posted about fall fashion trends. Scratch that, I can believe it because nothing in this year has gone as planned, So, this is just par for the 2020 course.

When thinking about fall fashion, there’s a balance to strike, and right now, I feel like I’m walking a tightrope. Historically, when working with my one on one styling clients, I look at what they have on their calendars for the season, specifically the next 30-90 days. Then I help them purchase items strategically and plan their outfits according to what’s on the docket. But in 2020, that’s kind of a joke, right? How are we to plan when we don’t know if kids are going to school? If we can attend weddings or bar mitzvahs? Or even if we can eat inside restaurants and feel comfortable doing so?

In a Typical Fashion Cycle…

Jean Jackets an Ageless Wardrobe Staple.

Denim jackets or jean jackets, whatever you call them, they’re something many of us have had in our wardrobes since we were kids. Back in the day, I had one embroidered with “Do The Hustle” Total 70’s child, right? Maybe colors and washes have changed a little over the years but denim jackets have been a constant workhorse in every decade. On top of that, they’re ageless. I have clients from age 13 to age 83 that can vouch, it’s a tried and true piece. A wardrobe must-have for women (and yes, even men) of any age. 

But here’s the thing, just like the silhouette of denim on the bottom, aka jeans, changes over time, so does denim on the top, aka the jean jacket. To keep up with the times, the denim jacket can end up being long, short, frayed, dark, light, stitched, or embellished. But a good old fashioned medium wash jean jacket ain’t goin’ nowhere.  It’s a piece that always works no matter the year, month, or day. 

Cake or Frosting: The Deliciously Simple Fashion Fix

When I meet with wardrobe clients, they’re often looking for a fashion fix or some easy-to-apply style tips to take their style up a notch. In the 15 years that I have been privately styling women (and some men) in NE, Ohio, I’ve discovered a few common themes that tend to come up over and over again.

When talking about clothes, fashion, and styling, some concerns are individual for each client. And I need to consider their taste, body shape, budget, and lifestyle. Those specifics are addressed more deeply with my one-on-one wardrobe consulting clients.

But regardless of age, gender, size, or socioeconomic status, I see overarching patterns in people’s wardrobe frustrations. The good news is that many of these pain points can be easily resolved with a fashion fix. All it takes are some specific helpful hints and style tips.

So that’s my goal. To take questions that arise with my one-on-one styling clients and provide answers that can help make getting dressed that much easier and more fun for all of you. 

Why Your Outfits Aren’t Quite Hitting the Mark…

I am CRAVING Color

I don’t know if it’s all the zooming or the depressing state of the world, but I am literally craving color right now. Yes, I’ll always be loyal to my all black, city chic looks. And I’m also not hating the whole neutral, monochromatic thing. In fact, I think it’s uber-sophisticated. But color gives everything life – it’s like adding salt to a bland dish. 
Think about it. When you’re on a zoom, or watching TV, the folks that pop, and look cheery and healthy are those wearing color. Admit it, I’m right!! Adding even a little color to your outfit makes a world of difference.
And, on top of that, color makes people happy – it’s an instant (and safe) bad mood pick me up.

Even if You’re Color Adverse

I know for many of my color adverse readers this is gonna rock your comfort zone, but hear me out…
Adding just one piece that has some hue to it changes up your whole outfit – and hence your whole outlook!! If you’re brave and bold, rock it from head to toe. Does wearing color typically makes you feel like a clown? Then consider adding just one colorful item to your ensemble and see how it feels.

The Colorful Pieces I’m Adding for Fall…

Camel Coats for Transitional Weather

I’ve been on a massive search for a camel overcoat. Why may you ask? Well, partly because it’s the perfect transitional coat for fall. It looks great over business attire and then plays nicely off duty too. Dressing up jeans or even sweats just enough to look cohesive and intentional.

It’s a Classic

Also, a camel coat is a timeless classic. And, classics are where it’s at.  I’m working on my Fall 2020 trends list for you all, but it feels weird, to be honest. 2020 is NOT A NORMAL YEAR! So, making predictions about what is in style when life seems so precarious isn’t sitting right in my gut. Instead, I’m looking at what fashion trends I’m seeing and thinking about ways to adapt and create them from what many of us may already have in our closets. So, classics like a camel coat play an integral role.

Of course, I’ll still add shoppable links if you’re inspired or want to add a piece or two. But overall, the lens I’m using for Fall 2020 is:  what subtle changes can be made to existing pieces (either as combinations or by adding one item) to make them feel fresh and new.

What to Wear When it’s 30-65 Degrees…