The $100 Challenge: Styling A Summer Dress At Every Size!


I’ve been thinking about fun & transformative ways to get the most out of my summer wardrobe, always looking for upgrades in staples like dresses, jewelry, & accessories at an affordable price. Lately, I love playing with color against my favorite classic pieces, which is the inspiration for this most recent Style Darling Daily post for The $100 Challenge. Since the dress below has so many possibilities, I couldn’t help picking out a few extras to get the most out of summer style for all shapes & sizes.

The $100 Challenge: dress ($30.00) in black / white @Old Navy, heels ($25.00) in lemon @Charlotte Russe, hat ($12.90) in white / black @Forever 21, studs ($8.99) @Francesca's, & clutch ($14.75) in ivory @Dress Barn.

SHOP: 1. dress ($30.00, was $32.94) in black / white @Old Navy (available in sizes XS-XXL), 2. heels ($25.00, was $28.99) in lemon @Charlotte Russe (available in sizes 5.5-10), 3. hat ($12.90) in white / black @Forever 21, 4. studs ($8.99, was $14.00) @Francesca’s, & 5. clutch ($14.75, was $29.50) in ivory @Dress Barn (also available in peach & black).

Affordable extras include neutrals, texture, & sensible alternatives to keep your looks fresh & playful this season. I love mixing up my jewelry from day to day, even when I rotate essentials like a favorite dress from week to week.

Affordable extras: jacket ($34.95) in light beige & plus jacket ($34.99) in light beige @H&M, bracelet ($5.99) in gold @Romwe, sunglasses ($5.99) @ModCloth, & sandals ($12.90) in coral @Wet Seal.

SHOP: 1. jacket ($34.95) in light beige & plus jacket ($34.99) in light beige @H&M, 2. bracelet ($5.99, was $8.42) in gold @Romwe, 3. sunglasses ($5.99, was $19.99) @ModCloth, & 4. sandals ($12.90) in coral (wide width available for $10.99, was $14.90) @Wet Seal.

Where are you shopping for this season’s best bargains? How do you like to style your favorite summer dresses? What patterns or colors do you love to wear now? For more stylish posts, check out the latest red carpet looks from Rachel McAdams & Karlie Kloss, where to get a figure-friendly Calvin Klein dress for less, Taylor Swift’s fashionable 1989 music videos, ankle strap sandals inspired by Jennifer Lawrence & Michelle Monaghan, & jewelry must-haves from Express. Happy Styling!

Basics for a Bargain: Delicate Ankle Strap Sandals Inspired by Rihanna, Jennifer Lawrence, Rachel McAdams, & More!


One of the hottest shoe trends of this summer is the ankle strap sandal, showing off plenty of toe & foot cleavage. A single-strap across the top of the foot helps elongate the legline & make any outfit instantly sleeker.

Take note from celebrities in an all-purpose black pair like Rihanna in a gold Giorgio Armani skirt set with black ankle strap sandals at the 2015 BET Awards. Also, Rachel McAdams attended the Southpaw screening in a white embroidered Zuhair Murad floral dress & black ankle sandals. Michelle Monaghan mixed separates in a black & pink polo with a ruffed leather skirt by Erdem & black ankle strap sandals at the New York premiere of Pixels. Mad Men actress Kiernan Shipka was youthful & sophisticated in a jacquard Giamba little white floral dress (shop similar here @Saks Fifth Avenue) with a yellow Miu Miu clutch (shop similar here @Miu Miu) & black Stuart Weitzman sandals (shop here @Stuart Weitzman) at the Los Angeles Confidential Women of Influence party.

Rihanna, Rachel McAdams, Michelle Monaghan, & Keirnan Shipka.

For a little variety, I’m also inspired by neutral & metallic options for ankle strap sandals, great for pairing with pastels & softer looks. For example, Jennifer Lawrence was radiant in a lace macramé Antonio Berardi little white dress with a black & white Roger Vivier chain purse & nude sandals. Model Miranda Kerr showed her support  at the Swarovski collection launch event in Austria in a cream Halston Heritage high low column dress (shop similar here @Neiman Marcus) with rose gold Jimmy Choo heels (shop similar here @Nordstrom). Teen actress Bella Thorne went monochromatic in an olive camisole & wide-leg culottes by Camilla & Marc with stacked bracelets & metallic sandals at her visit to The Lowdown with Diana Madison. It-girl Hannah Davis was feminine in a lace little white dress by Chloe with a nude belt, Edie Parker clutch, & nude Stuart Weitzman ankle sandals (shop here @Stuart Weitzman) at the 2015 Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Sports Awards.

Jennifer Lawrence, Miranda Kerr, Bella Thorne, & Hannah Davis.

I’ve assembled a variety of ankle strap sandals, which are available in multiple colors & range from high-end prices like those worn by the above A-list Style Darlings, as well as budget-friendly options for the shopper looking to save some money on her wardrobe.

sleek, summer-ready ankle strap sandals

SHOP: 1. Manolo Blahnik Chaos sandals ($725.00) in white @Neiman Marcus, 2. Stuart Weitzman sandals ($199.00, was $398.00) in orange @Stuart Weitzman, 3. Steve Madden Stecy sandals ($79.95) in gold @Steve Madden, 4. Mix No.6 Rayelle sandals ($39.95) in mint @DSW, 5. Betty Believe It sandals ($32.00) in polka dots @Lulu’s, 6. faux leather sandals ($29.90) in black @Forever 21, 7. single strap sandals ($26.00) in pink @GOjane, & 8. Dakota sandals ($26.00, was $36.00) in nude @Dress Barn.

Are you on board the ankle strap sandal trend? Which color do you like the best? Where are you shopping for this season’s biggest shoe trends? Which celebrity’s style do you follow? For more posts, check out my latest earring buys from Express, major clearance must-have wedges from Payless, Chrissy Teigen’s blazer & shorts look, & a nine-piece outfit for under $100. Happy Styling!

Show Me The Shoes: Summer Sale Must-Have Wedge Sandals for $10.00!


When it comes to summer footwear, I’m all about fashion & function, especially since the temperature is rising & my busy schedule keeps getting busier. An all-purpose recommended shoe for this lifestyle is a wedge sandal, but how about one (available in eight different shades) for $10.00? The ankle strap peep toe details are perfect for showing off your bold pedicure, while also dressing up a pair of shorts & a blouse, or going from day to night in a shift dress.

Payless - Montego Bay Prima strappy wedge sandal $10

SHOP: Montego Bay Prima strappy wedge ($10.00, was $39.99) available in black, white, nude, brown, blue, pink, multi, & metallic @Payless. I bought the multi color pair, happy to reinvent my favorite outfits in blue, purple, pink, & yellow with such a fun pop of pattern & color on my feet. Use code 251487194 for an addition 15% off (expires 7/19/15), plus get FREE SHIPPING with any online order shipped to your local Payless store. I might just have to add to my collection now since these are such a bargain!

Which color or style is your favorite? Where do you like to shop for the best summer deals on shoes? What’s your summer shoe style? For more stylish posts, check out Chrissy Teigen’s menswear inspiration, a nine-piece must-have summer outfit for under $100, Reese Witherspoon’s street style in Draper James, & affordable totes perfect for any summer outing! Happy Styling!

07/17/2015 Darling of the Day: 5 Ways to Wear Chrissy Teigen’s Summer Menswear Separates!


Chrissy Teigen is winning the internet right now & why shouldn’t she be? The model / TV personality is all things gorgeous & brilliant with her impeccable style, legs for days, & eff-you sense of humor- no wonder hubby John Legend keeps writing songs about her! However, Style Darling is posting today to share Chrissy’s effortless menswear-inspired separates that she’s been sporting this summer (& last year too!). Like most curvy girls, I’m a little skeptical about wearing shorts, but reinterpreting Chrissy’s shorts + blazer + heels style seems to be a feasible possibility. I’ve scoured the web to find affordable separates to recreate her looks in 5 interchangeable & fashionable ways!

Chrissy Teigen in shorts, a blazer, & heels. Chrissy was flawless in a pair of gray high-waist shorts, a cream blouse, & shorts with jewelry by Jennifer Meyer & lace cap-toe Kurt Geiger pumps at the NASDAQ Opening Bell in New York City. Last year, she rocked a cream shorts, a white A.L.C. blouse, jewelry by EF Collection & Vita Fede, & white pumps. Also in 2014, Chrissy wasn’t afraid of playing with texture in leather shorts by Halogen with an ASOS blazer, Givenchy bag, Express necklace, & black pointed toe pumps. Then, she combined a white tee with denim cut-offs & an ivory double-breasted blazer with a taupe fedora, studded white purse, & neutral mules. For the Cannes Film Festival, Chrissy was carefree in white shorts with a plunging top, blush blazer, ankle strap sandals, & sunglasses.

Shorts, blazers, heels, oh my!SHOP: LOOK 1. blazer ($24.99, was $59.00) in gray @Urban Outfitters, top ($7.00, was $17.95) in white @H&M, shorts ($14.99, was $29.50) in white eyelet (also available in navy, shop plus size here) @Dress Barn, & shoes ($12.49, was $30.99) @Charlotte Russe. LOOK 2. blazer ($20.00, was $50.00) in black @Boohoo, top ($10.83, was $21.28) @Romwe, shorts ($6.99, was $12.99) in black (also available in taupe & blue) @H&M, & shoes ($15.00, was $39.99) in brown (also available in silver) @Payless. LOOK 3. blazer ($24.80) in gray (also available in cream, burgundy, & black) @Forever 21, top ($4.99, was $29.99) in gray (also available in green, pink, & blue) @MANGO Outlet, shorts ($4.44, was $14.80) in khaki @Forever 21, & shoes ($35.00, was $70.00) in black @ALDO shoes. LOOK 4. blazer ($30.00, was $59.98) in nude @Missguided, top ($5.99, was $14.00) in black (available in other colors, &up to size 2x) @JC Penney, shorts ($12.00, was $26.94) in green (also available in black & white, up to size 20) @Old Navy, & shoes ($20.53, was $27.40) in taupe (also available in red & black) @GOjane. LOOK 5. blazer ($24.05) in white (also available in blue & peach) @ChicNova, top ($5.99, was $12.99) in blue (also available in white) @Charlotte Russe, shorts ($14.99, was $26.00) in black / white (also available in other patterns) @JC Penney, & shoes ($14.97, was $39.00) in black @Nordstrom Rack.

What do you think of Chrissy’s style? How do you like to wear menswear? Do you feel comfortable in shorts? For more stylish posts, check out a nine-piece outfit for under $100, Reese Witherspoon’s recent Draper James street style, summer-ready totes for $20 & under, & Chloe Grace Moretz’s Coach look. Happy Styling!

The $100 Challenge: A Stylish, Summer-Ready Nine-Piece Outfit!


When it comes to summer style, I love mixing up separates & discovering great ways to wear old favorites with new, affordable pieces as well. After a lot of Pinterest scouring, I’m inspired by several different street style looks, especially when it comes to statement pieces, like a bold printed tank, colorful bottoms like a feminine pair of pastel shorts, & mixing up accessories for a layered, elegant day look. Also, scarved aren’t usually a summer staple, but I love knotting them on the handle of my tote bag to add an extra splash of style, while getting the most use out of my scarves, always prepared for a chilly night. I’m excited to share all of the below pieces, especially since the total cost of the look (before tax) comes to under $100!

The $100 Challenge. 1. feathered blouse ($12.95) @H&M, 2. waves pocket shorts ($11.67) in green @Romwe, 3. faux leather flats ($16.61) in white @GOjane, 4. beaded triangle earrings ($3.90) in gold multi @Forever 21, 5. LC Lauren Conrad beaded multistrand necklace ($14.40) in gold @Kohl's, 6. square gold bracelet ($4.90) @ChicNova, 7. skinny belt ($5.99) in grey @MANGO Outlet, 8. French postcard tote bag ($19.00) @Shoptiques, & 9. lightweight grid scarf ($4.00) in blue @Boohoo.1. feathered blouse ($12.95) @H&M, 2. waves pocket shorts ($11.67, was $22.08) in green @Romwe, 3. faux leather flats ($16.61, was $20.80) in white @GOjane, 4. beaded triangle earrings ($3.90) in gold multi @Forever 21, 5. LC Lauren Conrad beaded multistrand necklace ($14.40, was $20.00) in gold @Kohl’s, 6. square gold bracelet ($4.90) @ChicNova, 7. skinny belt ($5.99, was $12.99) in grey @MANGO Outlet, 8. French postcard tote bag ($19.00, was $29.00) @Shoptiques, & 9. lightweight grid scarf ($4.00, was $10.00) in blue @Boohoo.

What do you like to wear for a causal summer day? Are you shopping for printed tanks or pastel shorts? Where are you finding the best summer bargains? For more stylish posts, check out Darling of the Day posts featuring Reese Witherspoon in Draper James, Chloe Grace Moretz in Coach, & Lily James in Ralph Lauren Collection, as well as new Top 10 Celeb Sightings galleries featuring Taylor Swift & Gig Hadid, & Elizabeth Banks & Lea Michele. Happy Styling!

06/28/2015 Darling of the Day: Reese Witherspoon’s Chic Draper James Separates!


The always stylish Reese Witherspoon is more than just a red carpet darling. She’s taken her off-duty street style to a whole other level, especially since opening her online boutique & lifestyle site, Draper James. Her latest look in a floral pencil skirt (shop here @Draper James) with a classic Oxford shirt (shop similar here @Nordstrom) is the perfect way to mix up your work wardrobe for a combination of youthful & tasteful flare. Also, Reese accessorized her look with a black & gold chain cross-body bag (shop here @Draper James) & navy espadrilles (shop similar here @Zappos). Check out these four looks below inspired by Reese’s effortless, Southern style.

Darling of the Day - Reese Witherspoon in Draper James. 1. snap button down skirt ($19.90) in blue @Forever 21, 2. chambray shirt ($15.00) in light wash @Old Navy, 4. short sleeve shirt ($23.99) in blue @ModCloth, 3. chambray shirt ($22.99) @Target, 5. Worthington pencil skirt ($12.99) in multi @JC Penney, 6. floral pencil skirt ($22.00) in black floral @Shoptiques, 7. Thalia Sodi floral pencil skirt ($29.99) in blue combo @Macy's, 8. floral midi pencil skirt ($16.00) in yellow floral @Boohoo, 9. sunglasses ($3.00) in black @H&M, 10. heart crossbody bag ($17.00) in black @Dorothy Perkins, 11. bangle watch ($11.99) in gold @Kohl's, & 12. platform wedges ($25.99) in navy @Kohl's.

SHOP: 1. snap button down skirt ($19.90) in blue @Forever 21, 2. chambray shirt ($15.00, was $24.94) in light wash @Old Navy (available in XL & XXL), 4. short sleeve shirt ($23.99, was $34.99) in blue @ModCloth, 3. chambray shirt ($22.99) @Target (BOGO 50% off clothing, accessories, & shoes), 5. Worthington pencil skirt ($12.99, was $40.00) in multi @JC Penney, 6. floral pencil skirt ($22.00, was $28.00) in black floral @Shoptiques, 7. Thalia Sodi floral pencil skirt ($29.99, was $49.50) in blue combo @Macy’s, 8. floral midi pencil skirt ($16.00) in yellow floral @Boohoo, 9. sunglasses ($3.00, was $5.95) in black @H&M, 10. heart crossbody bag ($17.00) in black @Dorothy Perkins, 11. bangle watch ($11.99, was $24.99) in gold @Kohl’s, & 12. platform wedges ($25.99, was $64.99) in navy @Kohl’s.

What do you think of Reese’s street style? Do you like the way she’s styled her look? Have you checked out her website Draper James? For more stylish posts, check out affordable totes for summer, Chloe Grace Moretz’s recent red carpet look in Coachbargain buys on statement jewelry, Lily James in Ralph Lauren, Eddie Borgo’s newest accessories collaboration with Target, & the latest Top 10 Celeb Sightings post featuring Taylor Swift & Mindy Kaling. Happy Styling!

06/26/2015 Darling of the Day: Chloe Grace Moretz’s Coach Tee & Leather Mini Look for Less!


Actress Chloe Grace Moretz might only be eighteen years old, but her sense of style exceeds her age. She’s a designer darling & can do no wrong, while still looking youthful & sophisticated when hitting the red carpet & making appearances for press events. This week, she made a splash supporting Coach in the brand’s sheer collar tee & leather mini skirt with a navy crossbody bag & sleek ankle strap sandals at the Coach 2015 Summer Party on the Highline. This effortless luxury look is easy to duplicate, especially for a Style Darling on the a budget. Without cutting out your favorite tee for a collarless look, I recommended the below affordable outfit, including a pointy beaded bib necklace to dress up a staple tee.

Chloe Grace Moretz in a faux-collard knit tee & black leather mini skirt, both by Coach, with a navy Coach crossbody bag & black ankle strap sandals at the Coach 2015 Summer Party on the Highline. 1. crew-neck tee ($7.50) in charcoal @Old Navy, 2. French Connection faux leather mini skirt ($44.80) in black @Dillard's, 3. bib necklace ($12.25) @Swell, 4. BCBGeneration crossbody Zooey bag ($17.39) in navy @Bluefly, & 5. Michael Antonio ankle strap sandals ($20.23) in black @Nordstrom Rack.

SHOP: 1. crew-neck tee ($7.50, was $8.50) in charcoal @Old Navy, 2. French Connection faux leather mini skirt ($44.80, was $128.00) in black @Dillard’s, 3. bib necklace ($12.25, was $24.50) @Swell, 4. BCBGeneration crossbody Zooey bag ($17.39, was $48.00) in navy @Bluefly, & 5. Michael Antonio ankle strap sandals ($20.23, was $45.00) in black @Nordstrom Rack.

How do you like to dress up a basic tee? Do you wear leather or faux leather pieces in the summer? Which celebrity dons your favorite summer style? For more fashionable posts, check out must-have statement jewelry for summer inspired by Kate Hudson & Selena Gomez,  Lily James’ Ralph Lauren look for less, Eddie Borgo’s new collection for Target, & Cara Delevingne’s menswear-inspired look. Happy Styling!

06/24/3015 Darling of the Day: Lily James’ Ralph Lauren Collection White Shirtdress!


I’m a sucker for classic style, especially when it comes to staples like an LBD, pointy pumps, pearl studs, & the list goes on. One summer must-have is a shirtdress, especially in white, a look that Cinderella & Downton Abbey star Lily James has mastered in a Ralph Lauren Collection design (shop similar here @Farfretch). She’s paired the crisp dress with gilded gold platforms sandals (shop similar here @Net-A-Porter), adding some sparkle to the chic Hamptons-ready ensemble.

Lily James in a white shirtdress by Ralph Lauren Collection with gold gilded sandals. 1. belted shirtdress ($22.90) @Forever 21, 2. sleeveless shirtdress ($32.99) @ModCloth, 3. flared shirtdress ($29.99) @MANGO, 4. short sleeved shirtdress ($49.99) @LOFT, 5. t-strap sandals ($21.59) @6PM, 6. platform heels ($27.00) @Lulu's, 7. ankle strap sandals ($29.90) @Forever 21, & 8. strappy peep toe heels ($18.99) @Charlotte Russe.

SHOP: 1. belted shirtdress ($22.90) @Forever 21, 2. sleeveless shirtdress ($32.99) @ModCloth, 3. flared shirtdress ($29.99) @MANGO, 4. short-sleeved shirtdress ($49.99) @LOFT, 5. t-strap sandals ($21.59) @6PM, 6. platform heels ($27.00) @Lulu’s, 7. ankle strap sandals ($29.90) @Forever 21, & 8. strappy peep toe heels ($18.99) @Charlotte Russe.

What’s your go-to summer dress & shoe combination? Do you have a favorite kind of dress? Do you wear platforms? For more stylish posts, check out Eddie Borgo’s new collection for Target, the latest red carpet looks from Gigi Hadid & Taylor Schilling, Cara Delevingne’s menswear look, & gold wedge espadrilles for summer. Happy Styling!

Splurge or Save… on Gold Wedge Espadrilles!


One of my favorite summer wardrobe staples is the wedge. This season, I’m seeing so many different styles of wedges, especially in chic metallics like gold, sold at high-end retailers & mainstream stores, appealing to shoppers at multiple price points ($200.00 – $15.00). These shoes are perfect for coordinating with a variety of outfits. Gold wedge espadrilles like the styles shown below are neutral for a maxi dress with drop earrings, a printed romper & chunky belt, & a flirty blouse with linen shorts. Not only are wedges a super comfortable alternative footwear when the temperature rises, but they can dress up the most casual outfit & dress down something cocktail ready. Also, a wedge heel of 3-4 inches elongates the legline & shows off your favorite nail polish hues of the season.

gold wedge espadrilles for summer - Joie ($192.50), MK Michael Kors ($150.00), Steve Madden ($79.95), Dress Barn ($40.00), Charlotte Russe ($35.99), & Payless ($15.00).

SHOP: 1. Lena wedges ($192.50, was $275.00) @Joie, 2. Giovanna wedges ($150.00) @MICHAEL Michael Kors, 3. Seaside wedges ($79.95) @Steve Madden, 4. Darcie wedges ($40.00) @Dress Barn (use code 2633 in-store for 15% off, expires 7/7), 5. ankle strap wedges ($35.00) @Charlotte Russe (BOGO 50% off, expires 6/21), & 6. Whimsy wedges ($15.00, was $39.99) @Payless.

For more shoe shopping, check out similar wedge styles, including Nine West, Prada, Kurt Geiger London, Badgley Mischka, Charles by Charles David, G by Guess, Fergalicious, & Candie’s.

Where do you like to shop for summer’s best shoe styles? What is your shoe style preference? Do you wear wedges? Which metallic is your favorite? Happy Styling!

Inside A #StyleBlogger’s Closet: My New, Affordable Summer Favorites!


I’ve been off the grid, but now Style Darling is back with plenty of affordable & stylish summer finds that I know I was pretty psyched to add to my wardrobe. Always with a budget in mind, I came across some summer must-haves, including maxi dresses, footwear (sandals & flats), totes, & jewelry. Also, when it comes to making seasonal investments, I seek out pieces that I can get as much wear from, transitioning pieces (especially accessories) from season to season. This summer, I’m not only planning a Hamptons getaway, but I’m also hard at work & making plenty of time for social calls, which makes me want to amp up my staples for more than one occasion. The following buys are the newest additions to my wardrobe, & I hope they’ll inspire my readers as well!

Sear - Covington maxi dress $24

SHOP: Covington maxi dress ($24.00) in black @Sears & Covington maxi dress ($24.00) in tribal @Sears.

Old Navy - linen scrunch flat $22

SHOP: Libby jeweled sandal ($24.99) in gold @Dress Barn & linen blend scrunch flats ($22.94) off white @Old Navy.

Dress Barn - floral bag $25

SHOP: floral handbag ($25.20) in black & white @Dress Barn & patterned shopper ($9.95) @H&M.

H&M - stud earrings set $9

SHOP: earrings set ($9.95) in rose gold @H&M & rhinestone button stud earrings ($6.00 / 2 for $10.00) in silver @Charlotte Russe

What are your favorite summer buys? What stores are you shopping for the latest trends this season? For more stylish posts, check out summer celebrity style featuring Olivia Palermo & Victoria Beckham, Charlize Theron’s Forever 21 jumpsuit look, the complete red carpet gallery of this year’s Met Ball including Rihanna & Beyoncé, & Top 10 Celeb Sightings with Iggy Azalea & Taylor Swift. Happy Styling!