Category

Style & Fashion

Category

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.

Outfit Ideas for the Teen & Twenty-Something Crowd

One of the really special things about the readership of this blog is that it’s quite wide ranging. Yes, there’s a business philosophy to “niche” down, and get very, very specific as to who your audience is. And I can see the benefits to that, but I personally love the fact that the community represented here is so diverse. When I look at my analytics I get giddy. This blog is read weekly by 8,000 people (and counting). By both women AND men. By people ranging in age from 15-85 years old. And in 50 different countries! And I am deeply grateful and fully aware that with out all of you spreading the word, telling friends and family and co workers , that growth would not be possible.

So, when I am planning what topics to cover, what to write about and generating outfit ideas, I try to keep the various readers in mind. When we use to go out (oh how I miss those days) my greatest joy would be when a  college kid, a mom and a grandma would all comment on that weeks blog. The same topic, but they were each able to relate from their own perspective. And knowing all of these different people feel that they’ve learned something here is my emotional currency.

Outfit Input with My Teen

For years, my 17 year old daughter Maggie’s friends would say “you’re so lucky, your mom can style you and give you outfit ideas”. And to that she’d subtly roll her eyes. The LAST thing she wanted was my opinion on what she was wearing. The one caveat however, was for special occasions such as weddings, bar mitzvahs, and holidays, she was open to my outfit direction. Other than that, she wanted to make her own choices.

Trying Out Different Styles = Creates Confidence

No Buy January: How To Shop Your Closet Instead

Maybe you’re on a shopping freeze post-holiday or you’re just sick of shopping and need a break – either way, shopping your closet is the key to literally making the most of what you have.

January is a month of resolutions. It’s a month full of big hopes and sometimes, disappointments. We’re conditioned to expect diet and exercise resolutions. In recent years, however, there have been movements to reset other excesses that come after the holidays as well. Most recently Dryanuary (aka dry January – starting the new year on a sober, clearer, more refreshed note) and No Buy January, where only essentials (groceries, medicine, household supplies) are purchased.

Those of us that use shopping as a vice (cough, cough) might find it a sizable challenge to go an entire month without purchasing clothing, home goods, or cosmetics. But just because it’s a challenge doesn’t mean that it’s bad. Taking a month-long break, especially after the shopping frenzy that can accompany the holidays, is a way to reset and establish new habits. 

A Closet Full of Clothes But Nothing to Wear

Do you know how many people I speak to that have a closet full of clothes but feel like they have nothing to wear? Even if you’re not participating in a no-buy January, mindfully spending time shopping your own closet before hitting the stores can give you a fresh perspective on that closet full of clothes.

Shop your closet is an exercise I do with EVERY SINGLE styling client. Because, we need to see what you have, and how it makes you feel before we go out and buy new things. The rational mind gets it, how can we know what you need, if we don’t have a sense of what you already have. The emotional mind, not as much, but that’s why I’m there to support.

That doesn’t mean I’m condemning all shopping. Far from it. What I encourage is intentional shopping – and shopping with intention can only come from taking stock of what you already have.

Ok, I’ll get off of my soapbox and give you the deets and the how-tos for shopping your own closet.

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..

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.