Inside A Style Blogger’s Closet: Most Mod, Darling Halloween Costume / Retro-Inspired Outfit!

Even though my Halloween party plans did not come to fruition this weekend (stupid weather!), I put together my look since I was so looking forward to wearing it!

Typically, I dress up in my favorite party dress with some birthday-themed adornments from the local party store & attend festivities as a birthday girl. To me, Halloween is just another reason to show off the stylish part of my personality & this year, I went with being a mod 60s gal! Having scored this darling houndstooth mod dress ($17.95) @H&M just recently, I knew that it had to make its long-awaited debut for Halloween.  I’m not the blood & guts kind of trick-or-treater anyway.

The dress is the only new purchase to my wardrobe, which I plan on wearing to work on Monday, however minus the bright turquoise tights.  Since my job isn’t quite one where Halloween costumes are permitted, I’m substituting the turquoise with a deep plum opague tight, hoping to look more professional, but still polished with a fashionable belt to cinch me in.  The pictured tights come from Target from a few years ago & rarely make an appearance, but the color is just so playful & fun, I like to pair it with a plain work-appropriate LBD & some textured ballet flats.  My high heel maryjanes represent an old Payless purchase & my sweater jacket is a favorite from Old Navy.

I’m a big lover of black & white patterns, so it goes without saying that the houndstooth headband thrived in my arsenal of hair accessories for quite some time now- perhaps a purchase from Icing by Claire’s? I’m keeping this post short & sweet, so Happy Halloween!  Happy Styling!


Red Carpet Review: Menswear Inspiration from Jennifer Aniston, Lady Gaga, & Evan Rachel Wood!

Menswear inspiration has made quite a comeback over the last few years & it looks like it’s not going away.  We have some amazing celebrity inspiration on how to recreate these looks, embracing the androgynous trend in the most chic & elegant way.  Evan Rachel Wood made a big splash this year in a Dolce & Gabbana suit with Salvatore Ferragamo heels at the Venice Film Festival & also a white Yves Saint Laurent suit with Neil Lane jewelry at the Ides of March premiere.  Fashionista Alexa Chung showed off some color-blocking & layering with a long-sleeved sweater, a button-down shirt, with gray skinny jeans & a red quilted Chanel crossbody bags.

Supermodel Kate Moss wore all-over gray in a slouchy top & trousers with cap toe heels for a Rimmel London event.  Naomi Watts sported her own interpretation of the vest & pants look in this all-white Stella McCartney design.  Jennifer Aniston shows a sultry black version in Dolce & Gabbana for the New York premiere of Five, with a peek-a-boo bra.  In a surprise turn of fashion, Lady Gaga showed up at New York City’s Beacon Theatre in this mustard Viktor & Rolf suit with a mini tube bra & plastic square sunglasses.

To shop for some menswear pieces like blazers, vests, trousers, & button down shirts, check out New York & Company, Express, Ann Taylor LOFT, & H&M.  For accessories to complete your look like belts, necklaces, bags, & shoes, check out some of my favorite stores like Payless, DSW, ALDO, & Steve Madden.

For more on Red Carpet Review, check out the looks from last month’s Emmy Awards, the top looks from the 2011 Toronto Film Festival, & Jessica Chastain’s Summer of Style.  Happy Styling!

Quickie Darling Deal & Steal: New Markdowns on H by Halston Shoes @Bakers!

If you didn’t know already, legendary designer Halston has created some super sexy styles of shoes.  The H by Halston brand can be found @Bakers.  Halston has been worn on red carpets by such celebrities as Sarah Jessica Parker, Halle Berry, & Nicole Richie.

When I was looking a the store’s website, I found some really amazing style son sale.  Although some of these prices are not necessarily in my fall budget, but if you’re looking to get your feet on the luxury footwear, take a look at the sale items, which are marked down!

I picked these four, which range in price from $29.99 – $94.99 & are perfect to add some height, thus making you look slimmer.  Check out the Alexa ($29.99, marked down from $90.00), Brodie ($49.99, marked down from $100.00), Ruby ($49.99, marked down from $110.00), & Rosalind ($94.99, marked down from $100.00), as well as other styles on the website.

The Alexa platforms are perfect to wear with a maxi dress while on vacation or even with a pencil skirt & glittery blazer.  The red snake & suede details on the Brodie peep toes would look super fierce with a structural LBD or with a metallic draped number.

The black & silver suede Ruby platforms are a mix of 70s & mod, perfect for a solid sheath dress or with a flowy jumpsuit.  The playful Rosalind maryjanes are a modern way of showing off a 20s flapper look, or even for a work look with wide leg trousers & a pinstripe button down shirt.

Fore more news on the latest shoe sales, check out lace peep toes inspired by Christian Louboutin, killer heels from GOjane, & Pippa Middleton’s ballet flats! Happy Styling!

Basics for a Bargain: Scarves Inspired by Zoe Saldana, Claire Danes, Rihanna, & More (Dedicated to Rosie)!

My bestie, Rosie, was asking me about scarves for the season & I thought what better way to show her & my readers the many different ways  a scarf can be worn, especially this fall!  However, when I looked at some celebrities to get some inspiration, I saw that scarves have a place among everyday pieces like jeans, sunglasses, & boots.

Zoe Saldana dresses up her black top & skinny jeans with platform heels & a leopard scarf.  January Jones covers up a tissue tee with her blue scarf, accented with a cargo jacket & ballet flats.  Nicole Richie adds a pop of color to her gray & black look with a chunky red scarf.  Kate Walsh makes her layered blazer look more chic with a taupe scarf that matches her striped cardigan.  Rihanna makes travelling look luxe with her neutral, streamlined basics but with an animal-inspired scarf.  Claire Danes plays with leather, but keeps it from looking too flashy with black jeans & a gray bundled pashmina.

Claudia Schiffer takes a 70s turn  with a printed scarf over a button down blouse & denim skirt.  If you take away the top & add a chunky knit, & replace the sandals with ankle booties worn with tights & you have a very fall-ready ensemble.  Ashley Olsen takes a walk around New York City, mixing prints with her top & floral scarf.  Model Bar Rafaeli brings an all-American flair to her court side look at the French Open back in June with mixing denim & a gray fringe scarf.

To amp up your looks just a little more, I’ve picked out a variety of scarves.  While I’m a super bargain hunter, I always recommend looking for accessories that are worth the investment b/c they last all season long! From Target, the tropical mix scarf ($16.99) in pink is perfect for an earth-tone look & the pop of pink would look very strong against dark denim.  @Payless, you can find the leopard print scarf ($9.99) to wear with a leather jacket & skinny jeans.  If you’re looking for some color with ladylike touches, check out LOFT‘s beaded dot scarf ($34.99)- especially when the store frequently has 40% off sales!

Mix a tiny floral print top & bootcut jeans with this tribal scarf ($9.50) from Charlotte Russe. Keeping with the prints, the jagged pattern scarf ($10.50) from Forever 21 is fun to wear with a graphic tee, denim jacket, & straight leg black pants for a casual day of errands.  Something a little chunkier, take a look at Bebe for the ivory open weave scarf ($29.00) that would show the luxury in your taste with a peacoat & knee boots.  A must-have scarf is the sheer lurex infinity scarf ($29.90) from Express, which comes in nine different colors.  The store is also currently having a BOGO 50% sale, so you can buy one for yourself and another for a friend without breaking the bank.  You can also take on blacks & whites with the ‘dawn’s early light’ scarf ($19.99) from Mod Cloth, which can be paired with a boyfriend blazer over a t-shirt & liquid leggings.

What are your favorite scarf styles?  Do you prefer fringe & pattern or do you go with a basic pashmina?  For more posts on Basics for a Bargain, check out Miranda Kerr in tees & leather, turtlenecks inspired by Amanda Seyfried & Selena Gomez, & The Stylish Five for more on cute cold weather accessories.  Happy Styling!

Quickie Darling Deal & Steal: Trick or Treat? BOGO 50% Off @Payless + 20% Off Coupon Code!

Trick of treat, Style Darlings!  I don’t usually post directly from my emails, but considering that there’s some bad weather out there on this Halloween Eve weekend, I know I’m staying in & may indulge in some online shopping.  For those of you who’d like to join me, check out the big BOGO sale @Payless going on right now!  It started yesterday, so there are still plenty of styles to pick from!  Also, I received an email a while back about a special 20% off coupon code, which expires 10/31, so this weekend is the weekend to jump on sale & coupon! If you shop online & have your purchased shipped to a local Payless store, it’s FREE! Happy Styling!

Inside A Style Blogger’s Closet: Busy Work Day Look, Mixing Structure, Texture, & Pattern!

Some might say that I get a little overdressed for my office job, that will remain nameless, but I think of it as a chance everyday to explore my professional attire & get multiple uses out of clothing that can be worn on casual days too!

On a not-so-special Tuesday, I put together this outfit b/c I was finally ready to rip off the price tag from the skirt, which I bought back in July (with the purchase of this skirt).  There are a few tiered layers to the skirt by Worthington from JC Penney & it is lined underneath, making it a not-so-summer-ready skirt.  However, as the seasons have been changing, I broke out some of my heavier pieces & saw that my $4.97 (yes, that’s how much I got the skirt for!) was going to waste since I hadn’t worn it yet.  According to the original tag, the skirt was first marked up to $60.00, which seems like much too much. Not to mention when I first bought the skirt, it was nug & now that I’m down a total of 12lbs for the 2011 calendar year, it sits just where its supposed to!

Since the skirt plays with three-dimensional structure, as you can see by the tiers, I broke out my asymmetrical black tee from New York & Company, which I’m pretty sure that I bought for under $10 (with the help of one of my favorite Style Darlings, Laurie).  The belt ($16.99) was a purchase earlier in the summer & polka-dotted tights were from last year, both from Target.  I know there’s a lot going on in the pattern & shape of the skirt, but I think when you have something as bold as this, it’s okay to put another pattern with it.  The skirt has a pointillism-inspired look, so the polka dots aren’t too far off.  Plus, they’re small enough not to take away from the overall look.  And who doesn’t love a good textured tight?

In addition, as a loyal Target shopper, I picked up the flyaway cardigan ($19.99) after urging my bestie Rosie (see the blog I dedicated to her here) to buy one. I don’t know why I didn’t hop on that right away since I’ve been wearing the cotton cardigan several times throughout the season now.

I don’t remember where I got the necklace, but I’d take a guess at somewhere like Mandee, Wet Seal, or Forever 21 since I don’t usually spend a lot on my fashion jewelry.  Of course, I can’t forget the shoes… I have these in a beige / gold also!  I love the four-inch heel & the silver lining around the cut-outs.  They lasted me throughout my eight-hour work day & are just so comfortable, but these are no longer available @Payless, since they were from (about) two seasons ago.  Unless it’s a shoe style emergency, I never buy anything from Payless without a coupon or when they’re having a BOGO 50% off sale & neither should you!

As always, I’m happy to share my style stories, now that I’m finally getting pictures up here on Style Darling.  I even told a customer who came into the office today how much my skirt cost when she remarked on how well-dressed I was & she snickered at me, “You know, you shouldn’t tell people that,” referring to the cheap bargain in which I so proudly announced.  Of course, there’s nothing wrong with a great deal, but it is nice to feel like you look like you’re wearing luxury pieces, especially when I’ve become invested in all the pieces that express my style to a tee!

Check out my previous Inside A Style Blogger’s Closet posts featuring my closet– literally- & a cute summer dress ($8.74) styled for fall! Happy Styling!

Quickie Darling Deal & Steal: Take A Stylish Walk On The Wild Side @Cache!

I’ve never actually shopped @Cache, but when I received an email from the store about their 60% off clearance sale, I just had to check it out.  I got really excited to find animal-inspired pieces like the dress ($159.00) that looks flattering to all shapes.  It’s just the kind of print that I was referring to in my previous post about what to wear with the lace peep toes!

Next, the snake print cami ($39.00) would really wow underneath a boyfriend blazer with skinny jeans & red heels, or wear it with a cardigan & pencil skirt to make it more of a work-appropriate shell under basics.

The silk shorts ($59.00) remind me of something Rachel Bilson’s character would wear on Hart of Dixie, but these are easily fall-ready if paired with black tights, a mock turtleneck & some ankle booties.  My favorite of all is the tiered skirt ($49.00), which is just enough flirty & feminine for my style.  It’s classy enough to wear with your favorite button down blouse or sexy enough to go with the highest platforms in your closet!

When you look at the prices here, you might be thinking that I’ve forgotten my style-on-a-budget rule, but if you check out the website, you can get an addition 60% off, so the dress which was originally marked at $168.00 & is on sale for $159.00, then becomes $63.60 in your shopping cart after the 60% off!  Oh the power of bargains!  I should also mention that this is an end-of-the-season clearance sale so not all sizes are available.  I wanted to share the news on the great sale so that my readers can benefit! Happy Styling!

Luxury Look-Alikes for Less: Lace Peep Toes Inspired by Lea Michele & Zoe Saldana in Christian Louboutin!

In cleaning out my stacks of magazine clippings, I was very inspired by the adorable Christian Louboutin lace & leopard heels, which are no longer available.  I always remembered Zoe Saldana wearing them at last year’s MTV Movie Awards & Lea Michele modeling them with a gorgeous mini Marchesa dress in an issue of 2010’s In Style

I was doing some clicking around Shop Style & nothing makes me happier than looking through the rows of evening shoes.  I came across these 2 Lips Too peep toe heels ($49.95) in black, ivory, & purple @DSW.  I love the details in the lace, feather, & jewel embellishment.  It makes for the perfect finishing touch to any ladylike look. These were unintentional finds that reminded me of the dainty & ladylike Louboutins.  Even though they don’t have that animal-inspired touch, any of these shoes could be paired with a sexy leopard dress.

Check out previous Luxury Look-Alikes for Less posts featuring Pippa Middleton’s ballet flats, Alexis Bittar earrings, & capped toe pumps! Happy Styling!

Quickie Darling Deal & Steal: The Latest Sale Apparel Under $30 @G By Guess!

I recently discovered the online site, G by Guess, a sub-brand of Guess, featuring very stylish apparel & accessories. I clicked through their sale items & found some very fashionable pieces marked down to prices under $30.00!  I always say that the beginning of a season is the best time to shop past-season pieces.  Here’s a perfect example of that!

I love the slinky one-shoulder dress ($22.48) in white, which is reduced in price from $49.50, but it’s only available online in XL. White is a tricky color to pull off if you have curves, but the flattering cut & with some carefully placed accessories like a metallic belt or a leather jacket, this could be a really hot piece to wear for a night out! Or, even a romper for fall can work! The chambray romper ($22.48) is perfect for a look with tights, ankle boots, & an oversized blazer if you want to make a playful daytime outfit.  Replace the built-in belt with something textured in croc or with grommets to create more dimension to this go-to summer piece.

The cargo ruffle jacket ($24.98) is great to complete a look consisting of dark denim jeans, a graphic tee, & pointy toe heels.  It’s a little bit urban, yet still offers a flattering cinch at the waist for feminine dresses.  Most of us can agree that bootcut jeans ($27.48) flatter nearly all shapes.  They’re the best casual & cool way of dressing down a sparkly top, & looking edgy in a masculine vest.

As for tops, I found these two which I thought were so cute & at a great price.  The printed top ($14.98) makes for a colorful pairing against leather leggings & a fitted jacket, or can be worn for day under a chunky knit & denim pencil skirt.  The plaid v-neck top ($14.98) shows a colorful pattern in multi / black, as well as a light purple.  It’s a fun alternative to the traditional plaid button-down for fall & also would pair nicely with something cordouroy… OR perhaps the green cargo pants ($19.98)?  I love that they’re a little bit utilitarian, yet still polished enough to wear with heels. On the website, they’re only available in size 24, but for those of you who are looking for a bottom option other than the easy go-to black trousers, grab them while you can!

Have you ever shopped @G by Guess?  What’s your best sale / clearance find for fall?  For more Quickie Darling Deal & Steal posts, check out deals on a sweater tunic, cozy tops, & jewelry!

Magazine Must-Haves: Get Kristen Stewart’s Glamour Cover Look!

In Glamour‘s November issue, Kristen Stewart is on the cover, sporting a sexy corset & skinny jeans look. It’s not necessarily fall-ready, but it’s certainly very cute! I know my bestie loves corset tops for day looks & this is just the look that’s perfect for day & night!  The total of any of these pieces comes to just under $115!

In my Darling of the Day tradition, I’ve included two looks that are women’s & plus size.  Of course K-Stew is wearing a bright animal-inspired corset, but the plaid corset top ($39.95) from G by Guess & brown lace corset ($34.50) from Torrid are perfect for day or night, especially under a boyfriend blazer or leather bomber jacket.

When it comes to skinny jeans, I love a dark wash b/c they look flattering to the legline even when they’re cuffed.  I picked Mossimo Supply Co denim jegging ($15.00) from Target, available in juniors sizes 1-17 & Old Navy‘s plus embroidered-pocket skinny jeans ($39.94).  We see that Kristen is barefoot on the mag’s cover, but I selected the very sexy platform shootie ($24.99) to add that glam factor to the outfit @Payless, but for those who wanna mix the corset for a day of shopping with the girls, the Gabriella Rocha gold flats ($10.00) are a super bargain @6PM.

As for the finishing touches, the very simple, but elegant necklaces make it work!  Some affordable options include the Chaps metallic shot-bead necklace ($14.00) from Kohl’s & Forever 21‘s multi-layer necklace ($6.80) in silver & gold.  If you’re also looking for just one more accessory, check out the thin lacquered bangle ($2.80) in black.  It’s also available in six other colors at the same price, so you can pick one up in each color, or a few for your favorite gal pals.

Don’t forget to check out previous Magazine Must-Have posts, featuring Miss Piggy, Michelle Williams, & Rihanna! Do you like this look? Have you worn a corset with jeans? Happy Styling!