Stocking Stuffer Sparklers!


When in doubt, I always turn to accessories & jewelry for gift giving. It’s fun for me to shop through stacks & stacks of sparkly goodies, where I can always find a little something for myself too. However, with the days counting down closer & closer to Christmas, I’ve been curious about affordable stocking stuffers for our stylish friends. Jewelry is a perfect way to go, especially if you know someone’s style really well. When you find that special something, it’s hard to resist the spirit of gift giving! What’s especially great about my five latest picks is that the most expensive is $18, which works fro a budget-minded shopper.

A New Day cuff @Target

locket @IcingAubrey heart studs @BaubleBar earrings @dressbarnbeaded necklace set @Charming Charlie

Where are you shopping for stocking stuffers? Are you ready for the holidays? What sort of jewelry do you like to wear this time of year? For more posts on accessories, click here, here, here, & here. Happy Styling!

Leopard Tops for All Sizes!


If there’s one print I love for any time of the year, it’s leopard. It’s a fun option for a sweater, blouse or top to pair with jeans, leggings, pants, or a skirt, especially when matching it up with a pop of color like red, hot pink, or green. Wearing a leopard top also opens up the opportunity to try some playful bling too in a statement necklace, big earrings, or stacked bangles. Here are some affordable must-have leopard options for misses & women’s sizes for sale now!

blouse @Chico’s

sweater @New York & Company

sweater @Stein Mart

tee @Torrid

top @Charlotte Russe

When it comes to leopard, you don’t always have to wear black with it. Try something with texture, a seasonal color, or add a little sparkle. You can definitely get a lot of miles out of a leopard top because of all of its styling possibilities. 

corduroy pants @LOFTfaux leather skirt @Charlotte Russefaux suede skirt @Fashion Novaskinny jeans @Old Navyrhinestone jeans @dressbarn

How do you like to style leopard separates? What are your favorite patterns to wear? Where are you shopping most for affordable fashion this season? For more posts like this, click here, here, here, & here. Happy Styling!

Inside A Style Blogger’s Closet: Black & White Pattern Mixing!


When it comes to putting together an outfit, one of two things will happen for me. First, I’ll plan ahead of time for a special occasion what I’d like to wear to honor or celebrate whatever the event is—& I won’t budge away from that outfit idea. On the other hand, for day-to-day styling, I simply go by however I feel. I consider the weather, how long of a work day is ahead of me, where I’m headed socially, as well as how I’m feeling health-wise to measure how much I’m willing to fuss with a garment. While it might look like a lot goes into an outfit, sometimes spur of the moment ideas hit me & I’ve created something unique & detailed.

However, when I want to experiment with my wardrobe to try something new with staple items (usually a cardigan, belt, statement necklace, or dress), my instincts lead me to pattern mixing, which is just my kind of fashion risk & something that I’ve happily & successfully explored over the last year. I love discovering the result of pairing stripes with florals or animal prints with polka dots, as well as metallics with chevron, just to have some fun while reinventing old favorites in a new way. When taking a fashion leap just such as this, I make sure that accompanying items are subtle, such as a patent leather flat, black pant, or opaque tights.

Last week, I was inspired to play with some new fall finds from dressbarn, pieces that are also perfect for a cool summer afternoon too. As soon as I saw the black & white tiered floral blouse & diamond print ankle pants, I knew I loved them, but hadn’t immediately thought of putting the pieces together. A black & white color combination is possibly my favorite because of its timeless & clean vibe for any season. When I play around with mixing patterns, I always keep in mind that the best way to execute an ensemble is by keeping with the color scheme. I added an extra special touch to finish off the look with my older floral printed pointy toe flats (shop similar here), a classic denim jacket (shop here), & silver jewelry (shop similar here) since the busy patterns need neutral companion accessories.

Of course, either of these pieces can be styled in multiple ways. For example, the blouse would look cute with a  pretty pink cardigan & skinny jeans, but it can also be a flirty option for night with a blazer & leather leggings. The printed ankle pants are screaming for a pop of color with a bold yellow tank & cobalt heels, or with a red turtleneck for fall & embellished ballet flats.

SHOP: cardigan @New York & Company, skinny jeans @Old Navytop @Nordstrom Rack, & heels @DSW.

For a little more black & white mixed print inspiration, here are a few more pieces in classic patterns like polka dots, stripes, floral, & houndstooth to get you thinking about all the ways to wear these two very versatile & chic colors.

SHOP: sweater @H&M, pants @YOOX, blouse @Maurice’s, & skirt @New York & Company.

Lastly, when seeking some style inspiration, I usually turn to Pinterest, which is where I can find some amazing red carpet & street style shots of my favorite fashionista celebrities who are experimenting on the daily, just like me, when it comes to mixing prints. Some admirable & professional pattern pushers are style icons Olivia Palermo, Solange Knowles, & Jamie Chung.

Look how each of these fashion forward ladies uses neutrals to play up the busier pieces of their outfits, while also offering a sense of balance among the stylish chaos of their outfits. Olivia uses a black blazer as a topper, as well as gold ankle strap heels for some glamorous edge. Solange is all about yellow with her handbag & cropped pants. Finally, Jamie’s gray booties & black heels complete her effortless looks.

Do you like to mix patterns in your outfits? What questions do you have about this risk-taking outlook? Which celebrities do you turn to for style inspiration? How do you feel about the classic black & white trend? Happy Styling!

 

Inside A Style Blogger’s Closet: My Birthday Style in Navy, Black, & Lace!


birthday-dressAs fashion-obsessed as I am, I have to say that there are few articles of clothing or accessories that really make me stop in my tracks. Well, maybe that’s not entirely true since there are certain qualities in a dress, for example, that are right up my style alley. I’m talking about anything a-line, with lace detail, & overall feminine in nature. In my line of work (or one of my lines of work, that is), it’s not difficult to find dresses such as what I’ve described. When it came time to think about what I’d wear for my birthday during this past Labor Day holiday, I was ready to turn to an older favorite (that I’d only worn one other special occasion time), which had a beautiful floral print in a lightweight summer fabric, perfect for celebrating on a summer weekend at high tea, a party organized by a very special small group of gal pals. However, I came across the Luxe by Carmen Marc Valvo lace fit & flare dress @Dress Barn in navy & black (available in plus size here), & suddenly my birthday outfit dreams were becoming a reality. I couldn’t stop talking about how excited this dress made me & 33 was starting to look really good!

luxe-by-carmen-marc-valvo-lace-fit-flare-dress-at-dress-barnI love the classic look of this dress, which really can be worn any time of year because of the rich navy tone with black lace details. It’s a chic alternative to a go-to little black dress for shoppers of any size, especially when navy can sometimes look dowdy, but here, it’s a modern & elegant party dress that I’m confident will find special multiple wears. For the summer, I paired my look with navy peep toe pumps & a bolero sweater (in case I needed the arm coverage). When it comes to the fall, I’ll mix up the look with a denim jacket & ankle booties for an edgy, textured take. Even in the colder months, I’d love to see how to the dress looks with opaque tights & knee boots. What’s even better about this dress is that it’s available top shop @Dress Barn in sizes 4-24!

How would you style this lace frock & where would you wear it? Do you often transform party dresses for day looks? What trends are you most excited about this fall? For more amazing style, check out more styles from Luxe by Carmen Marc Valvo, as well as model & designer Ashley Graham‘s newest crop of dresses for Dress Barn! Happy Styling!

Fab in 4 Ways: A Crochet Skirt for Day, Date, Work, & Weekend!


I recently had a conversation with a friend / coworker about the perks of our job, one being all the styling possibilities for certain items that can be worn for a variety of occasions. Thus the inspiration for this post, I couldn’t help thinking about how quickly the summer is going by, & that fall fashion is currently in stores. Blending the new with the past season while keeping a budget in mind is a very present factor when I’m considering how to build new looks from my wardrobe. Transitioning pieces from season to season is really how you can get the most from your fashionable investment, which can also surprise you when planning a day out with friends, a special date night, what to wear for an important work meeting, as well as when you’re headed away for the weekend. 

It didn’t take long before I came across this versatile crochet scalloped skirt from @Dress Barn (shop misses available in small – large & plus available in 1X – 2X here. I have the skirt from last spring (in more of a creamy ivory tone) & I was stuck on how to style it, especially since there’s so much detail in the crochet of the skirt. Gladly, this design was returning to stores in a neutral taupe, perfect for coordinating for any season. In the fall, try this skirt with knee boots & a chunky sweater, or for winter with a blouse, tights, & ankle booties. However, when thinking about all of the styling possibilities, I’m excited to share four fabulous ways to wear this skirt, including for day, date, work, & weekend. 

Crochet for day.SHOP: misses shirt @Charles Tyrwhitt, Aubrey Brooke wedge @DSW, turquoise bracelet @Charming Charlie, Gabrielle Rocha lobster tote @6PM, square stud earring @White House Black Market, plus shirt @Gap, Naturalizer wedge @DSW, turquoise bracelet @Charming Charlie, Gabriella Rocha nautical tote @6PM, & Jasper stud earring @White House Black Market.

Crochet for date.SHOP: misses cut-out top @Forever 21, strappy heels @GOjane, beaded hoop earrings @Francesca’s, champagne stretch bracelet @Icing, ALDO clutch @Zappos, plus fringe top @Forever 21, chunky platforms @GOjane, drop earrings @Francesca’s, iridescent stretch bracelet @Icing, & Jessica McClintock clutch @Zappos.

Crochet for work.SHOP misses Dana Buchman top @Kohl’s, neutral jacket @Dress Barn, neutral pump @Payless, long necklace @Forever 21, watch @Target, stud earrings @Express, plus Dana Buchman top @Kohl’s, neutral jacket @Dress Barn, pointy toe slingback @Payless, long necklace @Forever 21, watch @Target, & knot stud earrings @Express.

Crochet for weekend.SHOP: misses pocket tee @Charlotte Russe, collar necklace @BaubleBar, printed kimono @Wet Seal, fringe sandal @ModCloth, straw shopper @H&M, plus pocket tee @Charlotte Russe, statement necklace @BaubleBar, printed kimono @Wet Seal, colorblock sandal @ModCloth, & canvas shopper @H&M.

How would you style the crochet skirt? What items do you keep handy all year long? Which staples do you like to reinvent in new ways? Where do you shop for everyday essentials? Happy Styling!

Color Me Style: All-White Summer Inspiration from Olivia Palermo, Kerry Washington, Kristen Stewart, & More!


July is almost over, but that doesn’t mean summer is about to end. When it comes to summer fashion, wearing monochromatic white is an effortless, chic, & classic choice for any occasion. White is bright, sleek, light, & easy to pair with neutrals & prints for a luxe look. Get inspired by the celebrities below, including Project Runway judge Heidi Klum, royal fashionista Kate Middleton, model Kendall Jenner, Scandal star Kerry Washington, Café Society actress Kristen Stewart, & designer Nicole Richie.

Heidi Klum, Kate Middleton, Kendall Jenner, Kerry Washington, Kristen Stewart, & Nicole Richie in white.Olivia Culpo, Olivia Palermo, Selena Gomez, Sienna Miller, Solange Knowles, & Zendaya in white.More inspiration for the office, a day out with the girls, & date night comes from beauty queen Olivia Culpo, fashionable force Olivia Palermo, singer Selena Gomez, Burnt actress Sienna Miller, musician Solange Knowles, & pop star Zendaya

In an effort to reach Style Darlings of all shapes & sizes, I’m happy to share some white-on-white inspiration  with options of misses, plus, & petites looks because no one should be excluded from wearing what they want. White isn’t always an easy color (or lack of) to pull off (I know I never wear it all together), but I love a crisp white dress & flats, mixed with some sparkly metallic jewelry. Check out the below options to help build an elegant & on-trend all-white outfit to affordably play with for the rest of the summer.

dressesSHOP: misses jewel neck dress, plus floral lace dress, petite lace skirt dress @Dress Barn.

topsSHOP: misses lace blouse, plus twill shirt, petites tank @Old Navy.

bottomsSHOP: misses Free People shorts, misses Anne Klein eyelet pants, plus Amanda & Chelsea skirt, plus Amanda & Chelsea pants, petites Vince Camuto lace skirt, & petites NYDJ crop jeans @Nordstrom Rack

toppersSHOP: misses shawl collar blazer, plus Liz Claiborne open cardigan, & petites Worthington zip jacket @JCPenney.

shoes

SHOP: Jessica Simpson curtsy pump, Clarks Banoy Tulia sandal, GC lace flat, & G by Guess Daniel flat @DSW.

bagsSHOP: Madden Girl perforated tote, Gabrielle Rocha Chiara bucket purse, & Herschel Supply Co. clutch @6PM

jewelrySHOP: floral necklace, teardrop earrings, bracelet, & perforated watch @Charming Charlie

Do you like to wear all white in the summer? Which pieces are your favorites? What color do you most style monochromatically? Which celebrity’s all-white ensemble inspires you? Happy Styling!

Basics for a Bargain: Black Pencil Skirts for Every Body Type & Budget!


You know the old saying, “If you can’t stop thinking about it, buy it”? Well, that circulated in my head & heart all weekend… about a black pencil skirt. Mind you, I have a few black pencil skirts, all in different materials & cuts, but one particular caught my eye recently & I couldn’t stop thinking about the styling possibilities, especially for my next stylish photo shoot. It’s a staple for any Style Darling at any size, that’s for sure. This isn’t news in the fashion world. Magazines everywhere have been championing pencil skirts for every shape as a way to get the most out of a wardrobe without breaking the bank. Since I gave in to the “buy it” theory, I was simultaneously inspired to explore every which way a pencil skirt can enliven your style.

Check out the A-listers below to get inspired by all kinds of black pencil skirts & style choices, including blogger / actress Jamie Chung, designer / author Lauren ConradMad Men star Christina Hendricks, Aussie actress Rebel Wilson, the flawless Kerry Washington, & the one & only, Jennifer Lopez.

Jamie Chung, Lauren Conrad, Christina Hendricks, Rebel Wilson, Kerry Washington, & Jennifer Lopez.Pencil skirts aren’t just for the office either. Mix up your pencil skirt look with a graphic tee, peplum top, button down shirt, turtleneck, or body suit, for example. Wear one on a date night, going out with girl friends, or when running daily errands. The possibilities are endless for the basic bottom, especially if you’re looking to dress down something glitzy or elevate a casual top. Play with minimalism or menswear, perhaps even utilitarian or bombshell styles all when wearing a pencil skirt.

Misses, Plus, & Petites pencil skirt looks.SHOP: Misses cold shoulder top @Charlotte Russe, graphic tee @Nordstrom Rack, floral blouse @ModCloth, Plus plaid shirt @Forever 21, embellished top @Dress Barn, printed peplum top @Old Navy, & Petites ruffle tank @JCPenney, denim t-shirt @ASOS, & lace trim tank @Gap. Misses skirt @TJMaxx & skirt @H&M, Plus skirt @Eloquii & skirt @Kohl’s, & Petites skirt @Lord & Taylor & skirt @The Limited.

When it comes to the fitted skirt, look beyond a pump & to special details in your accessories. A black pencil skirt is a great foundation & neutral for any special extras, including playing with patterns, metallics, sparkle, cut-outs, & luxe textures. The suggestions below barely scrape the surface of what you can do with your ensemble, especially when you can wear a pencil skirt any season. 

Pencil skirt accessoriesSHOP: ankle strap pumps @DSW, metallic heels @GOjane, ankle booties @Lane Bryant, embellished flats @Topshop, belt @Lulu’s, rose gold tote @Payless, leopard clutch @6PM, & tortoise sunglasses @Target.

How would you style a pencil skirt? How often do you wear one? Where do you like to shop for staple wardrobe pieces? How much would you invest in season-to-season separates? Which celebrities inspire your everyday style? Happy Styling!

Accessories Access: Summer Must-Haves For $15 & Under!


While there’s still a week before the calendar kicks off summer, the sunny season is here on Long Island & there’s no turning back. For me, summer is about taking it easy when it comes to life & style. I want to read, get together with friends, & spend nights cuddling up with my special someone. When I’m not working or on the go, I want to wear comfortable, breezy, effortless pieces from my wardrobe & accessories, all of which exude the playful lightness that makes summer a fashionable time of year. When I’m stumped on what to wear, especially when transitioning between seasons, I turn to Pinterest to look up some fierce street style looks, as well as those of my favorite celebrities.

This includes Eva Longoria in a graphic jumpsuit with a bold white tote & aviators, Miranda Kerr‘s maxi dress look in sandal flats & a hat, Olivia Palermo in a cotton off-the-shoulder top with sneakers & a blue clutch, Kendall Jenner‘s flowy shorts & strappy sandals street look, Ashley Madekwe in a graphic tee & denim shorts, & Zoe Saldana in a floral print maxi, hoop earrings, & neutral tote bag.

Summer inspiration from Eva Longoria, Miranda Kerr, Olivia Palermo, Kendall Jenner, Ashley Madekwe, & Zoe Saldana.I’m always up for different colors & textures, keeping things bright with classic primaries & flowy in cotton or linen to inspire a fun, relaxing day in the sun & night under the stars. When hitting up the beach or going away for the weekend, I’d like to recommend a few essential accessories that are not only affordable, but can also play up your personality when mixing & matching with your favorite summer staples like denim cut-offs, a shirt-dress or maxi dress, gladiator sandals, & a shorts romper. 

SHOP: hat @Dress Barn, espadrille sandals @Old Navy, sunglasses @Forever 21, tote @Charming Charlie, & cover-up @Walmart (shop plus size here).

What are your favorite summer-ready pieces to wear? Where do you shop for the best bargain accessories? Which celebrities do you turn to for style inspiration? What’s your go-to summer look? Happy Styling!

Quickie Darling Deal & Steal: 10 Affordable, Must-Have Spring Picks To Inspire Your Style!


When it comes from transitioning from season to season, I love the idea of reinventing current wardrobe staples, but I’m also crazy about seeing what’s new & fresh in stores to find new favorites. However, I always have a budget in mind, which is why I wanted to share some perfect picks for spring, which are sure to add new life to your look. Spring is all about light layers, flowers, flirty prints, & soft colors, perfect for mixing with bolder pieces that channel menswear, modern, & minimalistic aesthetics.

Quickie Darling Deal & Steal- 10 Affordable, Must-Have Spring Picks To Inspire Your Style!SHOP: dress ($48.00) @Dress Barn, crossbody ($24.00) in ivory @Francesca’s, earrings ($14.99) @ModCloth, LC Lauren Conrad skirt ($45.00, was $60.00) in moonstruck @Kohl’s, blouse ($31.46, was $44.95) in pink @New York & Company, Brash pumps ($29.99, was $34.99) in nude @Payless, kimono jacket ($39.99) @H&M, watch ($16.90) in nude @Wet Seal, Tilda flats ($19.99) in white @Target, & necklace ($5.00, was $19.50) @Icing

What trends are you looking to explore for spring? Where do you like to shop for the latets buys? How would you style the ideal spring outfit? Which colors are you most excited about wearing this spring? For more stylish posts, check out Olivia Palermo’s cover shoot for Fashion magazine, fringed suede sandals for under $40, Lupita Nyong’o’s floral & leather red carpet look, & Victoria Beckham’s spring-winter street style combo. 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!