The Stylish Five: Summer Must-Haves ($35 & Under)!


Summer is in full swing & fall fashions are already hitting stores (ugh!), but that doesn’t mean it’s too late (it really isn’t!) to enjoy some fun & affordable summer styles. It’s still only the first week of July, which means that there’s the rest of this month, all of August, & the first half of September awaiting for you to explore the many outfit & accessory possibilities for a variety of outdoor, everyday, & special occasions. If you need a style boost, here’s a little inspiration of the five summer must-haves that’ll make your summer wardrobe not only chic, but memorable & playful.

1. The denim dress is a hallmark of summer. It’s lightweight with the ultimate classic feel, both features that make this dress perfect for pairing with wedges or sandals, textures like basket weave or cork, as well as acting as a neutral foundation to pops of color in your accessories.

SHOP: cold shoulder dress @Target & shift dress @Old Navy (both styles available in sizes XS – XXL).

2. I tend to rely on big earrings over the summer since heavier metals on my skin in the form of statement necklaces get uncomfortable when I’m out & about during a hot day when I’m trying to stay cool. Try a bold tassel earring instead to play up your personality & bring out the colors of a printed dress. Not to mention, a tassel style helps frame your face with a little flair too!

SHOP: purple shimmy earrings & multi color shimmy earrings @Charming Charlie.

3. There are so many shoe varieties when it comes to summer footwear, but the fringe trend is here to stay. A fringe sandal will not only relieve your feet the discomfort & stress caused by high heels in the heat, but also, it adds an extra splash of style to coordinate with neutrals like a button-down shirt & denim skirt.

SHOP: multi color fringe sandal @Francesca’s & Fergalicious black fringe Tanya sandal @DSW.

4. A floppy hat is always a summer necessity to not only protect your face from the harsh rays of the sun, but also adding a little bit of humor to your beach-ready look. Whether you’re laying out for a nap or walking the boardwalk, floppy hats with a message will easily refresh a tropical cover-up or maxi dress on those beautiful weekends by the water.

SHOP: Do Not Disturb hat @dressbarn & Sonoma Beach Please hat @Kohl’s.

5. Speaking of messages, a phrase / message clutch makes a statement that you’re all about style, taking it just seriously enough. If you’re headed for a weekend away or full-on vacation, clutches that celebrate the luxuries of style while abroad or having fun in the sun are sure to be the extra details that elevate your jersey dress or shorts romper, while also functioning to hold your most precious necessities.

SHOP: I Need A Vacay clutch @Forever 21 & Au Revoir clutch @Lulu’s.

Accessories Access: Pom Pom Bags for Spring!


The world is our runway. This phrase couldn’t be truer. When a lot is happening in life, I sometimes feel stuck in my wardrobe, seeking something refreshing & exciting to recreate old favorites & discover new trends to move my style forward. However, inspiration is always just around the corner with every click & keystroke on different social media forums.

This spring is probably my favorite spring ever, possibly because so much in life seems to be aligned personally, & I’m also feeling more confident in my style. This knowledge has also informed my newfound respect & developing radar for how accessories can transform your look. While I’m experimenting most right now with separates (mixing prints & color combinations), I’ve noticed how the playful pom pom movement isn’t going away. This includes all sorts of accessories: bags, shoes, earrings, & necklaces. When so much of spring is about light layers & pastels, pom pom accents make a bold statement without being too over the top.

One easy way to embrace the pom pom is with a straw bag, which is perfect for the everyday Style Darling looking to try something different, as well as for a variety of occasions like a weekend away or luncheon with the girls. Sure, there are plenty of expensive designer options making waves in the fashion world, including selections by (above) Kate Spade New York, Rebecca Minkoff, Loeffler Randall, Alice + Olivia, & Nannacay. When seeking out this look, you certainly don’t have to break the bank since the following styles (below) range in price from $29.99 – $43.00.

SHOP: 1. bag @ASOS, 2. tote @Fayrouzy, 3. tote @Zulily, 4. bag @ASOS, & 5. tote @Stein Mart.

What spring trends are you most interesting in trying? Where do you shop for new seasonal accessories? How much do you invest in trend items? Happy Styling!

The Stylish Five: Floral Scarves for Spring!


When it comes to spring fashion, scarves don’t always come to mind first, but they do for me! That’s because I have an enormous scarf collection that I have found much use out of over the years, adding plenty of texture & interest in building a look with a denim jacket over a dress, for example. Scarves are not just limited to one’s neck & for outerwear accessorizing too! Most of the time, I wear a light weight scarf knotted or bowed around my purse to give said every day carryall a little extra splash of style. You can play up a floral scarf with the colors in your outfit, as well as matching other hues of your bag. Here are five examples, ranging in price, but each offers a little something different in terms of color combinations & styling possibilities.

SHOP: abstract floral scarf @Ann Taylor, fuchsia floral scarf @dressbarn, floral & print scarf @Target, woven floral scarf @H&M, & meadow oblong scarf @White House Black Market.

To expand on my scarf-bag theory, here are a few combinations to consider when assembling your next spring outfit. This not only serves fashion, but utility as well. In case you’re chilly, but you hadn’t needed it earlier, it’s right there on your bag!

SHOP: blue dew scarf @DSW, striped Dana Buchman Bella tote @Kohl’s, square tulip scarf @LOFT, bucket backpack @Charlotte Russe, floral fringe scarf @Gap, & faux leather white tote @Forever 21.

Do you wear scarves in the spring? Where do you like to shop for spring accessories? Do you coordinate with your purse on a daily basis? Happy Styling!

The Stylish Five: Trendy & Affordable Fall / Winter Must-Haves!


This time of year is ripe with fashionable possibilities, which is precisely what makes it fun to get dressed in the morning, finding new ways to express your style and personality. Of course, there are challenges when it comes to putting together a chic & effortless fall / winter wardrobe, mainly because of the changing weather, but also, if you’re stuck in a style rut, there are five fall / winter trends that will help elevate your look without having to invest too much cash into passing fashion fads that only work for certain body types. These include: layers, sparkle, prints, jewel tones, & lace. The savviest of Style Darlings can even take some of these trends to create a detailed & unique outfit.

SHOP: turtleneck poncho @Macy’s, plaid blanket scarf @Lord & Taylor, faux fur vest @Old Navy, hooded cape @Zulily, & oversized cardigan @The Limited.

SHOP: embellished sweater @Target, glitter skirt @Wet Seal, statement necklace @Icing, glittery platforms @Charlotte Russe, & sequined satin clutch @Forever 21.

SHOP: plaid shirt @H&M, houndstooth blouse @JCPenney, paisley dress @Forever 21, leopard scarf @Charming Charlie, & floral flats @DSW.

SHOP: velvet wrap dress @ASOS, cold shoulder top @Macy’s, zipper sweater @New York & Company, straight leg pants @The Limited, & midi skirt @Charlotte Russe.

SHOP: dress @H&M, tank @Gap, blouse @New York & Company, choker @Lulu’s, & pumps @Payless.

What fall / winter trend are you thinking about? Where are you shopping for the latest deals & style buys? Happy Styling!

The Stylish Five: Love-Themed Accessories Just In Time For Valentine’s Day!


Happy Valentine's Day, Style Darlings!It’s less than a week until Valentine’s Day & there’s plenty of love-themed ways to amp up your style when it comes to hearts, lips, graphics, & sparkle. I wear hearts all year long since they’re my favorite shape & I’m always indulging in heart-adorned accessories this time of year, especially with jewelry. They’re flirty & add some humor to any outfit during the year, but they can also help you get into the holiday spirit. With that in mind, I clicked around on some of my favorite websites for some love-themed accessories that are both affordable & functional for any style. 

The Stylish Five - Love-Themed Accessories Just In Time For Valentine's Day!SHOP: 1. scarf ($13.99, was $28.00) @Kohl’s (use code BEMINE for 20% off online orders over $75), 2. watch ($15.00) @Charming Charlie (FREE SHIPPING on online orders over $50), 3. clutch ($34.00) @GOjane (FREE SHOPPING on online order over $50), 4. bangle ($7.90) in gold @Forever 21 (FREE SHIPPING on online orders over $50), & 5. stud earrings ($3.00, was $5.50) @Icing (use code SURPRISE for 10% off online orders).

When it comes to Valentine’s Day-themed style picks, you can certainly have fun with separates, as well as accessories, including these affordable finds:

More fashionable finds for Valentine's DaySHOP: 1. sweater ($32.95) @Shoptiques, 2. tee ($10.17, was $22.11) @Romwe, 3. crop top ($44.50) @Torrid (available in sizes 0-6), & 4. shoes ($22.99, was $74.99) @ModCloth.

What are you looking to wear this romantic holiday weekend? What plans do you have to keep it stylish? Do you wear love-themed accessories or separates? For possible Valentine’s Day gift items for your loved one or besties, check out Francesca’s, Dress Barn, Nordstrom, Burlington Coat Factory, Banana Republic, & Chico’s. Happy Styling!

Basics for a Bargain: The Plaid + Statement Necklace Combo for Fall, Inspired by Katy Perry, Rachel Zoe & More!


My posts are a bit far & few between these days- I’m working on my grad thesis, but that hasn’t stopped me from being inspired to expand my wardrobe & accessories choices this fall. The season is certainly in full swing & I’m thinking about my cozy / glam look for Thanksgiving. I have the plaid + statement necklace combination on the brain, especially since my statement necklace obsession is at its peak. Who wouldn’t be too? There’s so much inspiration every time I check out my favorite celebrity style blogs & Pinterest, when style stars are winning the statement necklace game. This includes the always flawless Olivia Palermo, The Honest Company founder Jessica Alba, pop star Katy PerryThe Real cohost Adrienne Bailon, the fearless Rihanna, former Gossip Girl actress Leighton Meester, model Amber Rose, & stylist / designer Rachel Zoe

Olivia Palermo, Jessica Alba, Katy Perry, Adrienne Bailon, Rihanna, Leighton Meester, Amber Rose, & Rachel Zoe.I couldn’t NOT share some of my favorite street style images from Pinterest, which have inspired this latest post. There are so many different color combos & metal choices to wear when considering plaid & jewelry. The pairing instantly dresses up a work look, makes date night a little more flirty, & mixes up your weekend favorites for a more glamorous options.

Fall's no-fail combo - a plaid shirt plus a statement necklace.It was tough narrowing down which plaid shirts & statement necklaces to select & feature, especially when I have a budget in mind for my readers & savvy shoppers who are looking for affordable fixes to any wardrobe rut. Also, I was eager to select a variety of jewels like rhinestones, beads, or pearls to coordinate with varieties of plaid shirts for any body type. Style knows no size, after all!

SHOP - Old Navy, Forever 21, Love Culture, Charlotte Russe, Wet Seal, Avenue, Target, Dress Barn, & Kohl's.SHOP: 1. classic plaid flannel shirt ($22.00, was $26.94) in red tartan @Old Navy (available in sizes XS – XXL) & bib necklace ($14.90) @Forever 21, 2. vintage wash plaid shirt ($29.95) @Love Culture & statement necklace ($16.99) @Charlotte Russe, 3. Attention plaid shirt ($15.39, was $21.99) @KMartcoin fringe necklace ($6.99, was $12.90) @Wet Seal, 4. plaid shirt ($38.50, was $55.00) in blue @Avenue (available in sizes 18-32) & leaf necklace ($10.40, was $12.99) @Target, & 5. plaid button down shirt ($40.00) in black / white @Dress Barn (available in sizes 1X – 3X) & Apt. 9 pearl necklace ($13.99, was $24.00) @Kohl’s.

If you’re still stuck on how to style this already seemingly busy pairing, what with some major bling over a pattern, think about basics that are not only rich in texture, but luxe in hue. Tuck your plaid shirt into slim bottoms like a pencil skirt or your favorite dark denim skinny jeans. Since fall is all about layers, try out a faux fur vest in a neutral or stylish jacket to reinvent your ensemble. 

What to wear with a plaid shirt & a statement necklace.SHOP MORE: 1. side split midi skirt ($25.50) in burgundy @Missguided, 2. high waist skinny jeans ($69.50) in indigo @LOFT (sign up for emails & get 40% off), 3. faux fur vest ($26.97, was $54.00) in black @Nordstrom Rack, & 4. crepe jacket ($24.99) in red @H&M.

Which plaid & necklace combination speaks to your style? Which celebrity’s statement jewelry game inspires you? For more stylish posts, check out budget-friendly earrings inspired by Jennifer Lawrence & Angelina Jolie, Olivia Palermo’s cover shoot for Holt Renfrew’s new site, how to get Victoria Beckham’s menswear look for less, & Louis Vuitton’s The Spirit of Travel campaign starring Michelle Williams & Alicia Vikander. Happy Styling!

 

Accessories Access: Mad for Affordable Plaid Extras This Season!


Plaid is the perfect print for fall, calling to match up your menswear style with sleek separates & luxe textures. Celebrities have been on the plaid train for a long time now, & it couldn’t look any better on the following A-listers: Reese Witherspoon, Jessica Alba, Taylor Swift, Rita Ora, & Hilary Duff.

Reese Witherspoon, Jessica Alba, Taylor Swift, Rita Ora, & Hilary Duff in plaid.Easy ways to add some plaid to your wardrobe without breaking your budget is to invest in accessories to wear with a variety of looks. Plaid goes against classic staples like a button down shirt & skinny jeans, a sweater dress & knee boots, as well as a lace blouse with a pencil skirt. Anyone of any age can rock plaid, & here are some affordable accessories to get you inspired to build that street style-ready fall look.

Accessories Access - Mad for Plaid This Fall!SHOP: 1. poncho ($37.99) in black / white @Necessary Clothing, 2. shawl ($39.99) in stone @ModCloth, 3. France Luxe headband ($20.00) in navy / green @Nordstrom, 4. Remington headband ($5.00) in red plaid @Target, 5. scarf ($12.90) in navy / green @Forever 21, 6. scarf ($12.99) in yellow checked @H&M, 7. Volcom pixie tote ($30.99, was $45.00) in red @6PM, 8. Croft & Barrow wristlet ($24.00) in black / white @Kohl’s, 9. Kelly & Katie pump ($39.95) in multi @DSW, & 10. flats ($12.00) in black pattern @Wet Seal.

When it comes to plaid, amp up your look with a little luxury, playing up your jewelry style based on the colors in your plaid. The richest colors include navy, green, burgundy, rust, burnt orange, gray, & purple, which are easy to find in stud earrings, decadent ear crawlers, statements necklaces, cuffs & bracelets, & cocktail rings.

Affordable jewelry to match with your plaid accessories.SHOP: 1. Helen Pavé square studs ($14.00) in navy @Francesca’s, 2. stone ear crawler ($7.99) in gray @Target, 3. faux stone cocktail ring ($6.90) in green @Forever 21, 4. enamel hinge bracelet ($20.96, was $29.95) in burgundy @The Limited, & 5. spirit beads necklace ($20.00) in light orange @Charming Charlie.

How do you like to wear plaid? What’s your favorite accessories for fall? What jewelry do you find works best with plaid? For more posts, check out fall floral separates for every size, affordable capes & ponchos for any body type inspired by Gwen Stefani & Jamie Chung, Olivia Palermo’s new jewelry collection for Bauble Bar, & Sienna Miller’s three-piece menswear outfit for less. Happy Styling!

The Stylish Five: Affordable Fall Florals For Every Size!


When it comes to fall fashion, I immediately think of luxe fabrics & jewel tones, mixed with layers to keep warm & look cool at the same time. A fashionable twist on your every day fall look includes lightened up floral pieces to blend with heavier ones, like a leather jacket, chunky knits, fringe tote, or suede booties. Here’s where you can play with color in your wardrobe, using contrasting prints to reinvent fall classics like houndstooth or buffalo plaid.

The Stylish Five - Fall FloralsSHOP: 1. floral sweater ($34.50) in navy / grey @Dress Barn (shop plus size here), 2. floral dress ($29.90) in black / natural @Wet Seal (shop plus size here), 3. jacquard leggings ($12.48, was $24.95) in black @Hollister (shop similar plus size here), 4. floral skirt ($14.98, was $49.95) @New York & Company (shop similar plus size here), & 5. floral bomber jacket ($24.99, was $60.00) @JC Penney (shop similar plus size here). 

When it comes to fall fashion, do you wear florals? Do you prefer printed tops over bottoms? Where are you shopping for the best deals this season? For more posts, check out cozy capes & ponchos inspired by Taylor Swift & Kim Kardashian, Olivia Palermo’s newest jewelry collaboration with Bauble Bar, Sienna Miller’s chic take on menswear, & Anne Hathaway’s playful look for a recent Good Morning America appearance while promoting The Intern. Happy Styling!

Basics for a Bargain: Cozy Capes & More Must-Have Fall Favorites, Inspired by Taylor Swift, Gwen Stefani, & more!


The weather has finally taken its turn for fall here on Long Island, so it’s definitely time to break out those layers to keep warm & build a stylish look. This starts with toppers like capes, ponchos, & vests, which are perfect for transitioning some of your favorite summer separates for this season. These chunky knits, fine wool, & fringed pieces are not only popular on street style pros of the blogosphere, but also some of the most fashionable celebrities, including A-listers like Taylor Swift, Gwen Stefani, Jamie Chung, Kim Kardashian, & Olivia Palermo.

Taylor Swift, Gwen Stefani, Jamie Chung, Kim Kardashian, & Olivia Palermo.Here’s also an opportunity for Style Darlings of any size to play with textures & prints like cable knit, faux fur, stripes, plaid, & fringe to mix with solid basics, pops of color, and complimenting patterns.

The Stylish Five - Capes, Ponchos, & Vests for fall & for all.SHOP: 1. faux fur mink cape ($69.90) in winter white @HSN (available in plus size, as well as brown & black), 2. stripe fringe poncho ($29.90) in black & white @Forever 21 (shop similar plus size here), 3. fringed cable poncho sweater ($42.00) in fig @Dress Barn (shop plus size here), 4. Ava & Viv plaid poncho ($34.99) in black & white @Target, & 5. everyday vest ($26.60, was $38.00) in black @Macy’s (one size fits all).

When wearing a full, flowy topper, the best way to show off your shape & stylish flare is to select a fitted, slim bottom to create a sense of balance. Also, these shapes are perfect to coordinate with knee boots, ankle boots, & other suede footwear for a head-to-toe fashion forward fall look.

What to wear with capes, ponchos, & vests.SHOP: 1. pencil skirt ($39.90) in black @Express (shop similar plus size here), 2. Levi’s skinny jeans ($36.99) in indigo @Kohl’s (shop similar plus size here), 3. faux leather pants ($24.99) in black @H&M (shop similar plus size here), 4. skinny cords ($34.94) in burnt ochre @Old Navy (available in sizes 0-20), & 5. seamless leggings ($6.94) in black @Walmart (shop similar plus size here).

How do you like to style capes, ponchos, & vests? Where do you like to shop for fall’s biggest trends? Which celebrity inspires your style this season? For more stylish posts, check out Olivia Palermo’s jewelry collaboration with Bauble Bar, red carpet & street style inspiration from Sienna Miller, Anne Hathaway, & Gwyneth Paltrow, as well as how to wear scarves like Rihanna & Jessica Alba. Happy Styling!

The Stylish Five: Affordable Scarves for Fall ($11 & Under), Inspired by Jessica Alba, Ashley Olsen, & More!


Somewhere along the way, I fell in love with scarves. They’re perfect for fall & winter, adding that extra splash of personality to your outfit, & only this summer did I realize the full potential of my look when there’s a stylish scarf wrapped around the handle of my favorite tote & crossbody bags. This was a way to get the most use out of my ever-growing scarf collection all year long, resolving the problem of my arms getting chilly during those cool, starry summer nights. However, you can get plenty of scarf envy from some of today’s most stylish celebrities whose looks are elevated by the accessory, like Jessica Alba, Rihanna, Emma Watson, Rachel Bilson, Sarah Jessica Parker, & Ashley Olsen.

Jessica Alba, Rihanna, Emma Watson, Rachel Bilson, Sarah Jessica Parker, & Ashley Olsen in scarves.

In preparation for fall fashion, I wanted to share some of my favorite picks, in prints & solids, to inspire your scarf love, especially when wardrobe budgeting is essential. Scarves can dress down a black dress for day & keep you cozy when there’s a shift in temperature in the evening. Scarves also present an opportunity to play with prints, like trying a stripe against a polka dot (in a similar color scheme) or mixing leopard with something menswear inspired.  

The Stylish Five - Affordable Scarves for Fall, $11 & Under!

SHOP: tapestry scarf ($5.00, was $10.99) in blue combo @Charlotte Russe, leopard scarf ($7.36) @Chic Nova, woven scarf ($9.80) in burgundy @Forever 21, floral scarf ($9.99) in white / blue @H&M, & chiffon scarf ($11.00) in purple @Dorothy Perkins.

Which scarf style is your favorite? How do you like to style a scarf for summer & fall? Where do you shop for accessories like scarves? For more stylish posts, check out Adam Lippes’ plaid lookbook for Target, how to wear mustard for fall inspired by Jennifer Lopez & Bella Thorne, 5 must-see film trailers for this upcoming awards season, the latest celebrity red carpet looks including Keri Russell & Olivia Munn, & styling a chambray shirt like Reese Witherspoon & Kim Kardashian West. Happy Styling!