Basics For A Bargain: Leather Has Never Looked Better, Inspired By Mandy Moore, Sandra Bullock, Heidi Klum, & More!


Leather really had never looked better! Each summer I’m surprised to see many looks worn by celebrities with leather, as well as dresses that have recently hit the runway. Of course, most of these runway looks are for the upcoming fall / resort seasons, but playing the game of fashion always means that you’re looking ahead with your wardrobe. For example, here we have leather dresses that offer texture, femininity, elegance, & modernism from Barbara Bui Pre-Fall 2013, Alice + Olivia Fall 2013 Ready-To-Wear, Tibi Pre-Fall 2013, & 10 Crosby by Derek Lam Pre-Fall 2013.

Alice + Olivia, Tibi, Barbara Bui, 10 Crosby by Derek Lam.This also makes me think of recent red carpet appearances by some of my favorite celebrities who’ve worn leather dresses, including Naomi Watts in a leather dress by Alexander McQueen with jewelry by Jennifer Meyer at the Los Angeles premiere of Ray Donovan. Also, my girl crush, Mandy Moore, attended a Helmut Newton event in a leather LBD with gold jewelry & sexy ankle-strap heels. Byzantium actress Gemma Arterton showed off her shape in a curve-hugging letaher dress with 3/4 sleeves, black pointy toe pumps, & a metallic clutch at the film’s screening in London. Scandal star Kerry Washington walks the red carpet at an ABC event in a red Marc by Marc Jacobs leather sheath dress with black & gold accessories, including House of Lavande studs.

Naomi Watts, Mandy Moore, Gemma Arterton, & Kerry Washington.Shopping for leather, or faux leather in this case, dresses is tricky sometimes b/c you always want to make sure that it fits you properly & doesn’t require an abundance of care or cleaning. I found these chic options that are both timeless & edgy to mix & match with accessories like pointy toe pumps, platform sandals, a metallic clutch, or drop earrings. First, I selected the BB Dakota Kira perforated dress ($68.00) from ShopBop, which definitely plays up the lasercut trend with playful peek-a-boo holes. Also, I found the Sanctuary Clothing faux leather shift dress ($55.65) from Dillard’s. It’s especailly flattering with strategic colorblocked panels.

leather dressesMy third pick is from Forever 21, the studded faux leather dress ($27.80) is the most affordable, & also offers plenty of styling possibilities with a boyfriend blazer, cropped bolero, metallic belt, or suede knee boots. For a change of color, the Anne Klein faux leather dress ($42.99) from 6PM brings a gritty edge to any office look, especially if paired with strappy sandals or printed pumps.

When it comes to leather, we’ve also seen a great deal of separates, especially in the form of skirts & leggings, which always cause a stir on the runway. The mixture of the tough material in sophisticated silhouettes makes for a memorable show, especially with skirts of varying lengths for a date night, the office, or an instant update to other basics. I found trendy leather separates in collections from SUNO Resort 2014, L.A.M.B. by Gwen Stefani Fall 2013 Ready-To-Wear, Altuzarra Fall 2013 Ready-To-Wear, & Michael Kors Pre-Fall 2013.

Suno, L.A.M.B. by Gwen Stefani, Altuzarra, & Michael Kors.Celebrities continue to once again mirror the runways when on the street or red carpet with leather pieces to accent this look. Sandra Bullock heated up the premiere of The Heat in an affordable leather pencil skirt from ASOS with a button-down blouse & strappy leather sandals. Rashida Jones was all smiles in a striped top with a cobalt blue leather mini skirt, which she accessorized with a statement pendant, colorful clutch, & towering platform sandals. Project Runway judge / supermodel Heidi Klum looks every bit the style icon in a head-to-toe midnight blue look, including a zippered pencil skirt, blouse, pumps, & snakeskin bag. Lastly, the always effortless Zoe Saldana attends a Chime for Change event in a Gucci floral blouse with leather leggings, jewlery by Repossi, & strappy sandals.

Sandra Bullock, Rashida Jones, Heidi Klum, & Zoe Saldana.As for wearing leather bottoms, you have a chic choice of skirts or leggings. Of course, there are shorts out there, as well as cropped trousers, but here I’m focusing on recreating skirts & leggings as seen by the celebrities above. This starts with the Rhyme Los Angeles perforated vegan leather skirt ($46.99) from Piperlime, which not only serves the environment, but also offers an upgrade to your professional office look. Also, for a pop of color, I love the Glamorous PU patent faux leather mini skirt ($42.43) in wine from ASOS, which adds a futuristic vibe to any button-down shirt, studded tank, or scoop neck pullover.

leather separatesFor a flirtier look, BonTon‘s Blu Pepper lasercut faux leather skirt ($47.20) will instantly make a silk blouse & fishnets look like you’ve just stepped off the runways of Paris. Lastly, these faux leather zip leggings ($13.80) from Forever 21 are perfect for pairing with a printed tunic top, knit oversized sweater, & sequin mini dress.

Would you wear leather this summer? Which is your favorite leather look? Do you experiment with leather in different colors? This isn’t the first time I’ve featured leather looks on Style Darling, so if you’d like to read more to catch all the trends, check out previous posts including inspiration from Jessica Chastain & Lucy Hale, red carpet looks from Julianne Hough & Zoe Kravitz, & leather pant looks on Gwyneth Paltrow & Fergie! For more posts from Basics for a Bargain, check out little white dresses as seen on Jennifer Lopez & Angelina Jolie, luxury leopard & metallic flip flops, floral favorites on Dianna Agron & Selena Gomez, striped maxi skirts from Vince Camuto & BCBG Max Azria, & peplum looks inspired by Amy Adams & Cate Blanchett! Happy Styling!

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Magazine Must-Haves: Tobey Maguire & Carolyn Murphy Celebrate Hitchcock’s ‘Rear Window’ For Vogue!


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I’ve been saving up my April magazines to bring with me to work & now that Spring Break is over, I’ve finally had the chance to take in the latest issue of Vogue, with the always lovely FLOTUS Michelle Obama on the cover. However, as a big fan of Alfred Hitchcock movies & Grace Kelly‘s timeless style, I was enchanted by the magazine’s reprise of the 1954 suspense thriller, Rear Window, starring The Great Gatsby‘s Tobey Maguire & supermodel Carolyn Murphy, with an appearance by Laurie Metcalf, taking over the film’s roles for a shoot by Peter Lindbergh. The shoot contains stunning looks by Dolce & Gabbana, Fred Leighton, Marc Jacobs, Oscar de la Renta, J. Crew, Michael Kors, Miu Miu, Hermès, Gucci, House of Lavande, & Rochas.

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Rear Window is definitely in the air since this week’s episode of ABC’s Castle spoofed the Oscar-nominated film, so as soon as I saw the nine-page shoot, I knew I had to feature the retro images. Tobey’s Brooks Brothers pajamas are nearly spot-on to those worn famously by James Stewart‘s photojournalist character in the film.

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What do you think of the stylish shoot? Do you like the Tobey-Carolyn pairing for the shoot? Which is your favorite Grace Kelly film? For more fashionable posts, check out Lena Dunham’s video for designer Rebecca Antonoff, Marion Cotillard for Lady Dior, Beyonce’s debut ads for H&M, & Gucci’s Spring / Summer campaign! Happy Styling!

Red Carpet Review: Top 10 Style Darlings To Watch For 2013!


Miranda Kerr, Solange Knowles, Jessica Chastain, Emma Stone, Rooney Mara, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Olivia Wilde, Malin Akerman, Ashley Greene, & Freida Pinto.

It’s now the final week of 2012 & fashion critics everywhere are compiling their lists of the best looks & best dressed throughout the year. Of course you have the A-listers like Anne Hathaway, Angelina Jolie, Rihanna, Diane Kruger, & Jennifer Lopez who always make a fashionable entrance, but I wanted to share my list of the Top 10 Style Darlings To Watch For 2013, meaning the gals who’ve made their mark on 2012, but still have a lot to share for the upcoming year.  This list includes, in no particular order, Victoria’s Secret model Miranda Kerr, singer / DJ Solange Knowles, stage & screen siren Jessica Chastain, America’s latest sweetheart Emma Stone, Oscar-nominated Rooney Mara, the pillowy-lipped Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, former House star Olivia Wilde, blonde bombshell Malin Akerman, Twilight starlet Ashley Greene, & Indian beauty Freida Pinto.

Miranda Kerr

Miranda Kerr has single-handedly reinvented street style for the mom-on-the-go. Avoiding leggings & oversized tunic sweaters, she’s busting her gams in towering heels, skimpy shorts, classic pencil skirts, & modern looks to show that everyday is a runway.  Here we see the Aussie in a belted white dress by Willow while taking in Sydney. She shows off her tough side in a biker jacket, green sweater by Acne, Tabitha Simmons lace-up booties, & a chic Christian Louboutin bag while in New York. The model isn’t afraid of matching prints in this Helmut Lang shorts suit, paired with Tabitha Simmons ankle strap sandals. Miranda certainly knows how to dine in style in a sultry pewter column gown at the Gramercy Park Hotel.  Lastly, she’s effortless in a Balenciaga printed skirt matched with black separates, including an enviable Givenchy tote bag. 

Solange Knowles

News of Beyonce’s baby girl, Blue Ivy, might have started off 2012, but it was little sister Solange Knowles who really made it a year of newsworthy style. She plays with prints & proportion, never afraid of letting her personality show, often experimenting with bright colors. Just last month the singer partied in Miami in a Kenzo sheath dress with transparent sandals. She plays with colorblocking in this demure red & black ensemble with a sparkling tote back & bow bedecked heels. For a garden party at the MoMa, Solange’s floral separates show off her feminine side, especially with killer nude Casadei pumps. While celebrating a Ferragamo event, the talented DJ wears colorful separates by the designer, along with tons of perfectly coiffed curls.  Lastly, one of my favorite looks includes the printed Vera Wang peplum dress that she donned with matching heels for the Runway To Win Launch Party.

Jessica Chastain

Jessica Chastain epitomizes what a modern-day movie star should be & she’s quickly climbing the fashion ranks with such a spectacular 2012 in front of the camera. She always brings out the nonstop glamour with every frock, cocktail dress, & gown that she wears- & they definitely don’t wear her.  It was hard to narrow down five of her best looks since she’s yet to hit on a red carpet slump, but I love the green Karen Caldwell sheath dress paired with suede bold Barbara Bui slingbacks & Harry Winston earrings for an appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman earlier this year.  She went for an all-black sparkling gown with green Bochic earrings, which was to die for against her alabaster skin & rich red hair.  At New York’s Beacon Theatre, this transparent beaded Marios Schwab dress caused quite the stir, but looked radiant with Harry Winston earrings & Giuseppe Zanotti satin heels. It’s rare that we see the Oscar-nominated actress in separates, but I love the look of her Kirna Zabête for Target ensemble, including a printed blouse, full blue skirt, black blazer, & peep toe heels.  Lastly, for the opening night of her run on Broadway in The Heiress, Jessica wowed in a yellow lace Stella McCartney design with nude Christian Louboutins

Emma Stone

Emma Stone has been playing up her red & blonde locks on the red carpet, especially for the promotional tour for The Amazing Spider-Man, which catapulted this girl-next-door into super stardom.  Everyone in Hollywood wants to be her friend & everyone else is coveting her wardrobe.  This includes the two-tone jeweled design by Burberry with a sparkling green pencil skirt & ring by Jennifer Meyer.  Emma’s bubble gum pink Valentino dress worn with the houndstooth pumps by Ferragamo was the match of the year in this feminine take on menswear-inspiration.  For a premiere, she wore a party-worthy Chanel dress with Cartier jewelry & Christian Louboutins to finish the look.  Emma not only sports a dress like no other, but she’s taken risks like this luxe black Elie Saab jumpsuit in London, as well as her Gucci suit with t-strap heels & emeralds by Tiffany & Co. for the People’s Choice Awards.

Rooney Mara

Rooney Mara not only kicked butt on-screen in The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, but she made one heck of a red carpet debut while promoting the film. Her minimalist style was a refreshing & much-needed dose of reality on while showing that you can be edgy & feminine at the same time.  Her blunt bangs have set a trend, as well as her unforgettably mysterious look, mixing progressive silhouettes with that ambiguously flirty stare.  Most recently, Rooney stepped out in Dubai in a custom sculptural dress by Calvin Klein.  She showed off her love of primary colors in this green Louis Vuitton cocktail dress for the Santa Barbara Film Festival.  For the Oscar nominees luncheon, she mixed a jumpsuit from ASOS with a chic white blazer by Thierry Mugler.  When in Rome, Rooney choose a ravishing red gown by Valentino, clad soft lace details. Last, she continues her sometimes androgynous look with a jacket by Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci, mini skirt, & ankle strap heels by Louis Vuitton.

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley is a regular featured in my posts for Red Carpet Review & Top 10 Celeb Sightings b/c she always gets it right. She’s turned heads not just b/c of her beautiful face & rocking body, but she brings a whole new level of taste to the red carpet as a model-turned-actress.  She’s got movie-star looks & isn’t backing down from any opportunity to steal the spotlight, especially in the stunning two-toned cocktail dress by Burberry with metallic cap toe heels.  One of my favorite looks of the year includes her green ruffled column gown by Gucci, topped off with Jennifer Meyer jewelry & white ankle-strap heels.  Also, Rosie smoldered in a lace overlay design by Jason Wu with a sleek updo, black pumps, & a deep lip color.  She knows how to work a trend, including the leather-detailed peplum dress with contrasting cap toe pumps.  Finally, her street style is pretty amazing too, especially the Stella McCartney printed mini dress with a Jason Wu tote, Alexander Wang sandals, & Burberry sunglasses. 

Olivia Wilde

Olivia Wilde was all the talk last year & she’s lived up to her last name in 2012 with a series of looks only a chameleon could pull off.  The green-eyed actress is slated for more than a dozen films in the next few years & she looks happier than ever.  She’s a designer’s darling & can work any number of looks, including Old Hollywood, boho chic, contemporary bombshell, & so on.  Whether she’s blonde or brunette, she can pull off a sleek LBD like this red-belted A.L.C. design paired with pointy toe red pumps.  She looks ethereal in a silver embellished Carolina Herrera gown with a leather Jimmy Choo clutch.  Olivia has made cocktail dresses look renewed again with this lace-trimmed frock by Prada, & I love the contrasting tone peep toe Aperlai slingbacks. She’s not afraid of playing with shapes, as seen in the Calvin Klein caped dress that she wore with strappy sandals & a House of Lavande ring.  Lastly, she’s even effortless in L’Wren Scott separates with bowed Christian Louboutins at a premiere in New York. 

Malin Akerman

Malin Akerman mixes her sunny smile with one of the biggest trends of the year: leather.  She’s not afraid of blending her beachy blonde locks with the rock-friendly material, while constantly showing off her love of separates & classic black.  There’s always a retro feel in everything she wears, including her plunging leather vest & leggings with a printed clutch by Barbara Bui & pointy toe Aldo pumps.  She plays with shape in the leather-accented peplum top with trousers by J. Mendel, studded Walter Steiger pumps, & bangles by House of Lavande.  At the Los Angeles premiere of Nobody Walks, Malin wore this classic-cut LBD in leather by Boss Black with a Stephen Webster cuff & suede peep toe heels.  In support of designer Vena Cava, she wore the brand head-to-toe including flared printed trousers & a leather clutch.  Last, the Swedish import looks nothing short of gorgeous in a high slit Cushnie et Ochs tangerine gown with a Coach clutch & sandals by Tibi.

Ashley Greene

Kristen Stewart might have been the talk of the town b/c of her affair & cheating on Rob Pattinson, but it’s Ashley Greene who’s emerged on top of the whole Twilight Saga, what with landing a campaign gig with DKNY & hitting every major red carpet looking bit a lady. She’s got the pose down & has designers in her back pocket, never failing to look age-appropriate, as a good role model for young actresses.  At The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 premiere, Donna Karan Atelier custom-made this one-shoulder blush gown for the actress, which she accessorized with Bvlgari diamonds.  While attending a premiere in Los Angeles, Ashley sported another custom gown by the fashion house in fuchsia with jewelry by Kimberly McDonald. She sure knows how to play up her shape, especially in this nude Emilio Pucci dress with a statement necklace by Karine Sultan, a studded Christian Louboutin clutch, & Casadei pumps.  Back in February at the Loveisrespect launch party, she choose black & white for this sequined Oscar de la Renta frock with Cathy Waterman jewelry.  Last, she surprised in a peach lace design by Yigal Azrouel with suede pumps. 

Freida Pinto

Freida Pinto is probably one of my favorite stars to emerge over the last few years since her debut in Slumdog Millionaire.  She’s so beautiful & brings a fresh vibe to many of her red carpet looks.  Whether she’s walking at Cannes or attending press events, she’s nothing short of sophisticated & youthful, all with the flash of her smile.  At the Dubai International Film Festival, she accents her Sam & Lavi printed dress with layered necklaces by Lindsay Vallan & Roger Vivier sandals. Black on black has never looked so chic than on Freida while promoting Desert Dancer in a black AllSaints blouse with skinny jeans & heels.  She mixes eras in a black & white collared top with a ruby red skirt by Contrarian New York & classic Louboutin pumps.  When viewing the Ferragamo show at the Louvre, she donned a beaded dress by the label with a shimmering box clutch & satin pumps. Earlier this year, she played with color in an Yves Saint Laurent bustier with a pencil skirt & satin platforms. 

Which celebrities are you looking forward to seeing more of in 2013? Who do you think has the best up-and-coming style? Which designers are on your radar next year? Happy Styling!

Basics For A Bargain: Pointy Toe Heels Are Here To Stay, Inspired By Katie Holmes, Stacy Keibler, Miranda Kerr, & More!


While this little Style Darling has been busy with holiday preparations & fighting off a nasty cold, I’ve been finding joy in shoes, pointy toe shoes, more specifically. While perusing through the latest gallery pics of the most recent & fabulous red carpet looks worn by my favorite celebrities, I started noticing that pointy toe shoes have been making a sneaky comeback.  Of course, celebrities have been donning these on & off, but throughout the summer & fall, they’ve been mixing up their looks with towering platforms, round toe pumps, as well as cut-out & deep-vamp booties this season. I decided to feature some affordable pointy toe shoes in classic black, nude, & fun designs for a variety of looks for day, evening, & work. 

First off, I wanted to share some celebrity inspiration with nude pumps. Katie Holmes pairs her neutral shoes with a bright magenta Narciso Rodriguez sheath dress & olive trench coat. Kerry Washington softens her leather A.L.C. frock with nude shoes & House of Lavande jewelry.  This is 40 star Leslie Mann is all smiles in a knotted coral number with a luxe cream coat.  Singer / actress Mandy Moore offsets her stunning cobalt asymmetric dress with a colorful Bvlgari clutch & super pointy shoes. 

It didn’t take very long to find some affordable counterparts, without having to break the bank.  This includes Forever 21‘s patent & faux leather pump ($27.80) in tan with a 4 1/2-inch heel, perfect for elongating your legline.  I also recommend the Madden Girl Tartt pumps ($34.99) in blush patent from 6PM, which are currently 30% off from their original $50 price tag.  Of course these shoes are perfect for any dress look, making any pair of gams long miles long, but they’re also especially flattering with skinny jeans & a tunic top, leggings & an oversized sweater, or a 70s-inspired jumpsuit. 

As for the basic black pump, a pointy toe is edgy when matched with feminine frocks, & they can even dress up the most basic of outfits.  Tina Fey shows off her digital printed top with skinny pants, whereas Kate Bosworth mixes her pumps with a sophisticated Emilio Pucci peplum dress. 

Maria Sharapova plays with separates, including a floral Zimmermann top, Tanya Taylor skirt, & Iwona Ludyga earrings for her Giuseppe Zanotti pumps. The svelte Stacy Keibler looks long & lean in her wool & leather Monique Lhuillier suit while walking the red carpet at the VH1 Divas show. Clearly, black pumps are an essential for any wardrobe, including the Nine West Love Fury pumps ($47.99), as well as the Dianna pumps ($39.95) by Diba from DSW.

Lastly, if you’re going to wear pointy toe pumps, there are some occasions when a fun & flirty shoe is a must-have.  Make an unexpected move by going monochromatic like Miranda Kerr‘s all-white look at an event for Mango, or get wild with something textured like Sarah Jessica Parker‘s Jean-Michel Cazabat snake embossed pumps which well-coordinated with her vintage Estevez dress & Fendi bag. 

Rashida Jones plays with color in her slim leg cobalt suit, Peter Pilotto blouse, Jimmy Choo clutch, & Dana Rebecca Designs jewelry.  Lastly, Olivia Wilde makes her sexy leather head-to-toe look even more enviable with spiked Christian Louboutins & a House of Lavande ring. 

For a splash of sass, I looked for pointy toe pumps with some color & personality.  @Charlotte Russe, I found the patent pointed toe pump ($25.50) in hot pink, which will pop against any all-black look, or bring out the best from a watercolor print dress.  Also, since it’s the holiday season, add a little sparkle to your pump with the Robidoux ($27.99) in bright multi from Aldo. Try these with a classic LBD, leather jacket & mini skirt, or sweater dress & tights.

Which pointy toe shoes do you like? How much do you usually spend on footwear? Do you prefer pointy toe or round? Happy Styling!

Color Me Style: What’s Black & White & Chic All Over?


My last post in Color Me Style was published just days before my trip to Italy earlier this year, so I thought that since I don’t have a third go-around to look forward to for 2013, I’d revisit the category in a way only appropriate for this Style Darling. My favorite color combination is black & white, which is what I’m featuring- although quite impressed with the fall collections that celebrities are sporting since this season doesn’t typically see all-white looks.  Of course, the beach-filled party days of summer are long gone, but white is still thriving, black has never looked better, & when you put them together, there’s a serious style moment happening.

It wasn’t very hard to find some celebrity inspiration for these colors & this is what I’m sharing. Gwyneth Paltrow looks demure & ladylike in a white knit, wool Misha Nonoo skirt with bright Sergio Rossi pumps. It-girl Olivia Wilde is bold-shouldered in a figure-flattering LWD, House of Lavande jewelry, & metallic platform pumps. 666 Park Avenue star Rachael Taylor wears a head-to-toe Calvin Klein Collection look, including silver lace-up heels & a box clutch. British actress Felicity Jones looks flirty & cool in an all-black sweater & skirt outfit with bowed pumps at the Miu Miu show. Olivia Palermo continues to catch my eye in an all-black leather Dior look with Giuseppe Zanotti pumps. Modern Family bombshell Sofia Vergara shows off her curves in her Sofia by Sofia Vergara for KMart black sparkling dress with tights & suede platforms.

As for black & white looks, I love the variety here when it comes to feminine dresses, vintage-inspiration, as well as nods to menswear with separates all in my favorite color combination! Jessica Alba goes androgynous sexy in a Narciso Rodriguez blouse with loose-fitting trousers & cap-toe Jimmy Choo pumps. French import Laetitia Costa shows the softness of a slim-fitting black suit & sandals, all by Dolce & Gabbana. The sultry Penelope Cruz is elegant & statuesque in an embroidered black & white cardigan by L’Wren Scott with cuffed trousers & Salvatore Ferragamo pumps. Rock of Ages actress / former Dancing with the Stars dancer Julianne Hough is mod in a black & white mini dress with silver pumps at a Henri Bendel party. Scandal star Kerry Washington is as pretty as ever in a white feminine sheath dress with black accents, rose gold Anita Ko studs, & metallic cap-toe pumps.

Black & white has also made the Spring 2013 runways, with especially fabulous designs from Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Chloe, Yves Saint Laurent, Carolina Herrera, & Catherine Malandrino Black Label.

Naturally, I’m excited to share with readers how you can achieve the perfect black & white looks while on a budget. From LOFT, you can find the polka dot wedge top ($39.99), or if you’re looking for a more streamlined look, try New York & Company‘s contrast trim banded collar blouse ($39.95) which will pop against any pencil skirt, colored jean, or slim leg pant.  For a more feminine touch, I love the dolled-up darling ruffled bow blouse ($28.99) from Ruche, which I’d wear to work with a lacy tweed skirt & textured tights, or for a fun night with the girls wearing my favorite dark wash jeans & metallic sandals.

However, if you’re looking to add an unexpected edge to any fall/winter ensemble, try the Danielle seamless skirt ($12.48) in white from G by Guess, which is also available in black.  Also, I’m always a big fan of zebra, which is why I picked the knee-length zebra print skirt ($19.80) from Forever 21. Black & white dresses are perfect for any occasion, especially with a modern graphic print or something in a classic polka dot.  I love the Ronnie & Nicole short-sleeve mitered stripe dress ($35.00) from JC Penney & White House Black Market‘s strapless dot dress ($29.99). Also, Superfly flats ($49.00) from Nine West are a fun touch for the office or a day date, especially when worn with brighter pieces like skinny cords or dark denim jeans.

How do you like to wear black & white? Do you prefer one color over the other? Which staples in these colors do you wear for day & night? For more posts on affordable & fashionable finds, check out posts from Quickie Darling Deal & Steal, Fabulous in 4 Ways, The $100 Challenge, & Splurge or Save! Happy Styling!

Top 10 Celeb Sightings: Sheaths, Lace, LBDs, & Ladylike Style Featuring Kate Middleton, Rachel Bilson, & Jessica Biel!


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I’ve returned home to the middle-of-nowhere suburbs on Long Island, known for its malls & neighboring university hospital, & as I’m preparing the daunting task of unpacking my overpacked bags from my eleven-day Southampton-based excursion of style & writing, I’m sitting here at my laptop, absorbed in checking on the latest & greatest from my favorite websites (In Style mainly) to see what I’ve missed.

While the Olympics are underway in London & the summer blockbusters are hitting theaters stateside, some of the best dressed celebrities are hitting the red carpet & posing at press events.  Not to mention that all of our favorite fall television shows are returning to production & the stars are plugging their shows & pilots in some serious style. From actresses to singers to royalty, this edition of Top 10 Celeb Sightings is chalk full of chic sheath dresses, lacy frocks, revealing LBDs, & ladylike elegance, sure to spark some water cooler conversation (among Style Darlings, of course).

Check out Emmy Rossum in Zuhair Murad, Jaime King colorblocking, Jessica Biel in Oscar de la Renta, Kate Middleton repeating her Roksanda Ilincic dress, Katy Perry in Dolce & Gabbana, a red-hot Kylie Minogue, Liv Tyler rocking a risky babydoll, Lucy Liu in J. Mendel, Rachel Bilson in menswear-inspired separates, & Rachel Weisz in Dior Haute Couture. Happy Styling!

Red Carpet Review: 2011 Venice Film Festival Featuring Kate Winslet, Abbie Cornish, Madonna, & More!


At this year’s Venice Film Festival, the stars walked the red carpet, made appearances at screenings, & promoted their films in pure style.  There were some very exciting style surprises, as well as back-to-back hits on the red carpet.  Menswear inspiration, minimalism, vintage Hollywood, & sleek separates were among the trends dominating the fashion world right now. Among these stars were Marisa Tomei, Kate Winslet, Diane Kruger, Madonna, Keira Knightley, Cindy Crawford, Bar Rafaeli, Abbie Cornish, & Evan Rachel Wood.

Marisa Tomei, co-star to George Clooney & Ryan Gosling in Ides of March, was colorful, wearing a sheath dress by Erdem, an embellished top with an orange Preen skirt, & a pearl-accented neon yellow draped Marios Schwab gown.  And then there was Kate Winslet, the unofficial spokesmodel for chic.  The Carnage star wowed in a mocha Victoria Beckham dress with strappy Jimmy Choo sandals.  Then for day, she chose a classic LBD with a gray blazer, thick-strapped sandals, & House of Lavande‘s Panetta gold & diamante bracelet.  She once again stole the show in a stretch cotton multi-colored Stella McCartney dress with drop earrings & peep toe pumps at the Mildred Pierce premiere.  Then for another day event, she kept her all-black ensemble simple with a tank, shorts, a blazer, & the same peep toes!

Younger up and coming stars like Abbie Cornish turned some heads with this ombre silk organza tiered Atelier Versace stunner.  For a more movie star-esque day look, the W.E. star continued to earn raves in this Elie Saab a-line LBD with polished touches of gold in the House of Lavande choker.  Abbie isn’t shy when it comes to print either, as we can see in the keyhole maxi dress while attending the Venice Film Festival’s Movie Star Lounge.

Also making a splash, especially with the menswear trend was Evan Rachel Wood who’s shown above a whopping four times, just like her Mildred Pierce co-star, Kate Winslet.  She suited up in an outfit by Dolce & Gabbana with Salvatore Ferragamo houndstooth pumps (which I just drooled over on the Nordstrom website, for $950.00!).  Then she brought new meaning to shirtdress with this flowing white Alessandra Rich design with jewel-studded black ankle strap heels.  Then she returned to her black & white suit look, but with a vest over a feminine white blouse with some serious black Christian Louboutin pumps.

Diane Kruger stepped out in a textured Chanel dress with a matching striped clutch, but kept her German-girl-next-door look with a messy side braid.  Then she stepped up her look in this Grecian-inspired cascading nude Elie Saab bustier gown.  Madonna also made an appearance in support of her directorial debut, W.E., wearing a black & white L’Wren Scott dress with a gold cross & platform pumps by Yves Saint Laurent.  To show that she’s still got it, Madonna choose a custom-made butterfly-embellished Vionnet dress with Miu Miu sunglasses for the film’s premiere.

Also, Keira Knightley stepped off a gondola in a printed Mary Katrantzou dress for a photocall for A Dangerous MethodCindy Crawford proved that you don’t have to be a movie star to look like one in one-shoulder Roberto Cavalli gown with Chopard jewelry.  And last but not least, model / actress Bar Rafaeli opted for a lace-paneled jumpsuit by Emilio Pucci.

Who do you think was the best dressed during the festival?  Did Madonna get it right with all those butterflies?  Was Evan Rachel Wood too bland in black & white?  Do you think Kate Winslet stole the show?  Check out our last Red Carpet Review post with a look at The Help‘s Jessica Chastain & some of the best looks from the Cannes Film Festival back in May!  Happy Syling!

4/26/11 Darling of the Day: Alexis Bledel Works Casual Chic at MTV!


Alexis Bledel has really been coming into her own, especially with her upcoming role in Robert Redford’s The Conspirator. She’s been hitting the red carpet non-stop, including at MTV’s The Seven in flared MiH Jeans, a silk A.L.C. top, & delicate touches of gold House of Lavande jewelry. This look is perfect for brunch with friends or a casual day event.

Check out the actress during her many recent appearances on red carpets like at the Shine Awards, The Conspirator‘s premiere in New York, & the movie’s D.C. premiere earlier this month! I loved the actress on Gilmore Girls, but I think I’m loving her chic & mature red carpet styles more!  Happy Styling!

9/30/2010 Darling Of The Day: Alexis Bledel!


Alexis Bledel, known for her adorably lovable portrayal as Rory Gilmore on Gilmore Girls, has certainly grown up.  She’s been all over the fashion world these days & here she is last month celebrating the launch of Kate Spade‘s new fragrance Twirl.  Wearing dark denim skinny jeans, a white bow neck sleeveless blouse, & House of Lavande jewels, her look is chic & easy to recreate with just a few irresistible pieces.

Alexis Bledel 9/30/2010Top (Macy’s), Jeans (Old Navy), Shoes (GOjane), Bracelet (Forever 21), Bracelet (Forever 21), Earrings (Forever 21), Ring (Forever 21), Clutch (Forever 21).

Which TV actress do you think has the best style? How do you like to dress up a pair of jeans? Keep following all the latest updates from Polyvore fo rmore celebrity looks for less. Happy Styling!