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!

 

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Watch This Style: Fall Wardrobe Inspiration from Returning TV Favorites!


Aside from Fashion Week & the general change of seasons (which marks ankle bootie & rich textures like suede time of year), September means that our favorite television shows are returning to make us laugh, cry, sit at the edge of our seats, & of course, be in awe of the characters’ styles. In a first ever on Style Darling, I’ve undertaken a mighty 10 television shows returning this season & found their most stylish leading ladies (two, in some cases), & found pieces & looks to inspire your fall wardrobe. Naturally, we’re talking something budget-friendly, yet still true to the small scree goddesses that have bloggers everywhere in a fashion tizzy!

Scandal

Scandal (airing Season 4 premiere on 9/25 @9PM on ABC) left Olivia Pope (played magnificently by the one & only Kerry Washington) washing her hands of the controversy & turmoil that she blames herself for in Washington D.C., especially because of her torrid love affair with the president. However, Olivia’s style was only elevated by such drama, sharing with viewers the importance of a luxurious coat collection, classic & statement handbags, as well as clean lines & neutral separates since Olivia is all about getting rid of the fuss in people’s lives.

Scandal inspired look.

To recreate Olivia’s style, I found the Jessica Simpson toggle double pocket coat ($99.99) @TJX.com, & paired it with chic separates like the flutter sleeve blouse ($39.95) in black @New York & Company, which is also available in white, & the studio stretch tab waist slim flare columnist pant ($39.90) in black @Express. In keeping with the character, I thought the lovely Lolita satchel ($39.00) in ivory / black @Charming Charlie was just the right touch. Lastly, for some more Olivia Pope inspiration, be sure to check out the new Scandal collection for The Limited, which hit stores 9/23!

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New Girl

New Girl (airing Season 4 premiere on 9/16 @9PM on FOX) will surely tackle that whole Jess-Nick romance, even though the adorkable couple ended things last season. Now that Zooey Deschanel‘s character has certainly settled into her man-dwelling apartment, she’s constantly battling life with one vintage look after another, & laughter is sure to ensue. Not to mention that Jess’s girlie girl style fits right in with her job as a teacher, always conservative yet cute for partying it up after hours.

New Girl inspired look.

Just about any ’50s/60s-inspired frock will do for recreating Zooey’s on screen look as Jess. This includes the ‘storytelling it like it is’ dress ($39.00) in blue @Mod Cloth, which can be mixed & matched with other bold solids or layered with a floral cardigan. Also, try the Worthington long sleeve crew neck sweater ($19.99) in Lafayette rose @JC Penney over a classic button down shirt or with a mini flip skirt & opaque tights. Jess believes in wearing strong, yet playful pieces like this stripe high waisted full midi skirt ($24.99) in black & white @Charlotte Russe, which will only make her nerdy Durand frames ($95.00) in whiskey tortoise @Warby Parker all the sexier!

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The Mindy Project

The Mindy Project (airing 9/16 @9:30 on FOX) is one of my favorite must-see shows this fall, not just because the brilliant Mindy Kaling writes a hilarious ensemble comedy, but because the show is after the hearts of its viewers with the on-again-off-again love story with one Danny Castellano, played by Chris Messina. Yes, there’s laughter too, but I’m also super excited to see what Dr. Lahiri (Kaling’s character) will wear. She’s no stranger to bright colors, wild patterns, feminine florals, & layers of preppy chic style.

The Mindy Project inspired look.

To build a Mindy-friendly look, I found these gorgeous pieces to mix & match with other bold separates. This includes the double breasted hooded trench ($64.00) in khaki @Dress Barn (for plus size, click here), short sleeve lace dress ($108.00) in chrysanthemum red @LOFT, Merona 3/4 sleeve v-neck cardigan ($16.08) in lime juice print @Targetplaid 2-button jacket ($138.00) in berry plaid @The Limited, & berry blast handbag ($47.00) in fuchsia @LuLu’s. Of course some of these are pricey pieces, but I’ve come to believe that there are certain pieces worth investing in, like a blazer with endless color combination possibilities, or a day-to-night dress.

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Revenge

Revenge (airing 9/28 @10PM on ABC) is returning this fall & Emily Thorne (played by Emily Vancamp) is back & stronger than ever in her plot against the Graysons. I love that her style recalls the effortless ease of a modern day Grace Kelly, with a luxe twist on casual wear. She wears plenty of neutral colors & no-fuss separates so that she can easily slip into scheming mode with the movers & shakers of The Hamptons setting. I love watching out for the designer pieces on this show, especially on additional key characters like Victoria (Madeline Stowe), Charlotte (Chrsta B. Allen), & Ashley (Ashley Madekwe).

Revenge inspired look.

When I started assembling these pieces, I realized that they have various uses, for both day & night, as well as creating looks from season-to-season. While most of our lives won’t be centered around law-breaking revenge schemes, the closest we can get to the fabulous life of Emily Thorne is recreating her style with the colorblock roll sleeve shirtdress ($109.99) in cream puff @Ann Taylor, MOD.lusive ruched sleeve long cardigan ($42.00) in white @Nordstrom, v-neck blouse ($24.95) in powder beige @H&M, & true slim chino pants ($44.99) in khaki @Land’s End.

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Nashville

Nashville (airing 9/24 @10PM on ABC) is the kind of show that not only inspires music, but also fashion. Southern style is loud & clear with this show, especially when it comes to an edgy look & a splash of rock ‘n roll. The show’s leading ladies Rayna James (Connie Britton) & Juliette Barnes (Hayden Panettiere) are constantly at odds, but one thing is clear, they know how to dress. I was especially inspired by the flashy stage looks & modern casual separates that can be jazzed up for a night of music. The last season ended with both divas in trouble, both professionally & personally, but I can’t wait to see what’s gonna happen next.

Nashville inspired look.

For Rayna’s all-American look, I choose the Harper denim jacket ($54.50) in dark wash @GbyGuess, classic rise slight curve slim jeans ($24.90) in extra shade @Levi’s, & Calimesa tie dye loop scarf ($24.00) @Francesca’s, which can be worn with a sequined tank, graphic tee, or cropped top. Then, to channel Juliette’s playful & sexy stage look, I found the sequined tailored dress ($69.99) @Mango Outlet & Michael Antonio ‘Mains’ booties ($29.94) in black @DSW, which makes for a great night-out outfit that can also be accessorized with bangles & drop earrings.

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2 Broke Girls

2 Broke Girls (airing 10/07 @9PM on CBS) combines two of my favorite things: cupcakes & fashion! The comedy’s stars Beth Behrs as the preppy / fashion forward Caroline Chaning & Kat Dennings‘ loveable bad girl Max Black make for the perfect modern day odd couple, just trying to get back. Caroline is always neutral clad, doused in pearls & body conscious dresses, whereas Max’s fashion sense takes on a tougher city vibe in bright primary colors & boots, with a touch of menswear inspiration.

2 Broke Girls inspired look.

For Caroline’s look, I was excited to find the Casual Couture by Green Envelope long sleeve surplice jersey top ($29.00) @Bluefly, Jcolor casual pants ($24.00) in khaki @YOOX, & Madden Girl Getta pumps ($39.95) in nude @Zappos. Also, for Max’s style, I loved the Joe Fresh boyfriend plaid shirt ($24.99) in navy @JC Penney, Juicy Couture knit skinny jeans ($36.99) in black @Kohl’s, & buckled strap slouchy boots ($34.90) in black @Wet Seal. Each piece is fall-ready & great for layering for a day out with the girls or a casual chic dinner with friends.

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The Good Wife

The Good Wife (airing 9/21 @9PM on CBS) keeps raking in the Emmy awards, especially with a constantly compelling performance for the show’s lead, Julianna Margulies as the powerful Alicia Florrick. Her wardrobe includes power suits & strong jackets, much like Scandal‘s Olivia Pope. In Alicia’s world, there’s no room for floral or fussy pieces. She’s all about structure & strength, so edgy embellishments  have no place among the clean details & clean lines.

The Good Wife inspired look.

Start building a professional wardrobe like Alicia’s with strong-shouldered jackets that have unique details & cuts. These will look great with any go-to pair of trousers. As toppers, I picked the ANNE KLEIN Single Button Houndstooth Blazer ($129.00) from Lord & Taylor & H&M‘s fitted jacket ($49.95) in gray mélange. Also, an easy way to complete the look is with the Roz & Ali smart fit trouser pants ($34.50) in black @Dress Barn, which are also available in straight leg, plus sizes, & petites.

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REID EWING, SOFIA VERGARA

Modern Family (airing 9/24 @9PM on ABC) is a comedy must-see, especially because of the show’s female leads. When it comes to style, of course there’s always a cute outfit on Sarah Hyland’s character Hailey, but the real sex-pot changing the look of a stay-at-home mom is Sofia Vergara‘s Gloria. Gloria often steals the spotlight from her family members, especially when it comes to showing off her curves in wrap dresses, V-neck tops, & skinny jeans.

Modern Family inspired look.

Straight from Sofia Vergara’s collection for KMart, including the longsleeve wrap tunic ($19.99) in red, faux wrap dress ($29.99) in animal abstract, & embellished blazer ($39.99) in white. Since Gloria is always seen in high heels, I knew a classic, yet sexy black pair of platforms would do the trick in recreating the look, which is why I found the Fergalicious holler back shoes ($23.98) from 6PM.

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Elementary

Elementary (airing 10/30 @10PM on CBS) is a modern day New York City-based take on the classic Sherlock Holmes stories & what’s extra awesome about this version is that the science-minded Watson is played by kick-ass actress Lucy Liu. Instead of John, she’s a Joan who develops an intense partnership with Holmes (Johnny Lee Miller) while they’re soling crimes all over the city. Aside from her brilliant mind, I love her on-the-go style which often includes dark, layering pieces, always with a chic pair of booties.

Elementary inspired look.

To achieve Joan’s chic style, I picked the Dantelle open pleat front cardigan ($39.00) in ebony @Nordstrom, leggings ($34.50) in black @J.Crew, tulip back knit blouse ($14.80) in silver black @Forever 21, canvas utility jacket ($39.94) in arugula @Old Navy, knit infinity scarf ($12.00) in black @Target, & Qupid cuffed side-zipper chunky heel ankle boots ($42.99) in black @Charlotte Russe.

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Hart of Dixie

Hart of Dixie (2015 on The CW) is the last show that I’m sharing & it doesn’t have a set premiere date since star Rachel Bilson, who plays the quirky city doctor Zoe Hart, is expecting her first child & filming seems to be halted. However, I love her character’s edgy side with dark, modern cuts in tops & leather shorts, as well as dark colors in mini & maxi dresses. She’s an accessories queen with chunky necklaces, embellished details, & the highest heels in sandals & booties imaginable. Also, it’s hard to ignore Lemon Breeland, played hysterically by the one & only Jamie King. Lemon’s style is true to the Alabama debutante ladylike way. She loves florals, sparkle, & vintage-inspired looks with a bold lip & finger curls.

Hart of Dixie inspired look.

To get you Zoe look, try getting inspired with the Liz Claiborne long sleeve blouse ($30.00) @JC Penney, hue leatherette leggings ($48.00) in black @Nordstrom, faux leather moto jacket ($39.80) in black @Forever 21, & Jessica Simpson Adriana mixed -media ankle booties ($94.99) in charcoal @Saks Off Fifth. For a classic Lemon look, you’ll love wearing the Joan Vass wavy sequin crewneck sweater ($47.25) @Neiman Marcus Last Call, scuba midi skirt ($42.50) in peach dusk @New York & Company, Bare Necessity plain pointy heels ($21.30) in fuchsia @GOjane, & No Business Like Show Business dress ($30.99) in poppy @ModCloth.

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Which show are you waiting for? Which character do you think is the most stylish? Which returning fall shows did I leave out? For more stylish posts, be sure to check out Fashion Week runways from Carolina Herrera & Michael Kors, my newest Target dress purchase, textured jackets from Alice + Olivia & Dress Barn, & Altuzarra’s new collection for Target! Happy Styling!

Accessories Access: How To Style The New Warby Parker Fall Collection!


New York Fashion Week (#NYFW) is upon us (certainly my favorite time of year), but what’s also exciting is to keep an eye out for the newest collections at our favorite & affordable retailers that don’t preview their designs on a traditional runway. I know when it comes to accessories, I generally lean toward scarves & jewelry, but one important & oh-so fashionable accessory for both men & women is a chic frame of eyeglasses- especially styles from Warby Parker‘s new fall line of eyewear. Hey, guess what? It debuts today! Sporting frames just because you have to is a thing of the past! However, a brand like Warby Parker is a long-awaited trendy gift for those of us with eyes needing assistance. I’ve been wearing glasses for over 20 years & was psyched when I was approached by the company to showcase the new styles right here on Style Darling

Warber Parker collection

In getting to know the brand a little better, I learned so much & was especially impressed with the company’s target unisex audience: “those who own their style, exercise their wit, & add life to the party. Personality is what makes a good pair of glasses great.” Not to mention that investing in one of these 9 new styles (in titanium & acetate), you’ll be investing ($95.00 for a single vision pair) in a good cause since Warby Parker donates a pair of glasses to someone in need with the help of their partnered non-profit organizations. Click here for more info on this very worthy cause!

When I got a good look at the promotional shots & different styles, my blog-ready brain was eager to pair up some of my favorite designs with outfits for various occasions. This includes a relaxed day look for when you’re running errands & an evening outfit, á la Zooey Deschanel‘s lovable character, Jess, on New Girl. Also, I must share my vision for wearing chic frames to the office, as well as when you’re headed out of town for a weekend getaway of luxury & style!

Warby Parker - Hardy Striped Pacific Day Look

My first outfit can be easily recreated with basic wardrobe staples so that the Hardy frames in striped pacific can be the star player. Keeping  a budget in mind, I choose a short-sleeve bike graphic tee ($14.99) in blue from JC Penney & Old Navy‘s flirt skinny jean ($22.00) in eyre. To top off the look, I love the luxe feel of the zippered faux leather moto jacket ($24.80) in camel from Forever 21. Additional accessories to finish off the outfit include the American Eagle ‘Boulevard’ brogue flat ($16.99) in cognac from Payless, Freemont zipper tote ($29.98) in black from Francesca’s, & the Jennifer Lopez textured concentric hoop drop earrings ($13.50) from Kohl’s.

Then switch things up in the evening with a blend of timeless pieces that can be mixed & matched with other separates, especially when paired with the 80s-inspired Coley frames in crystal. This includes the ‘Gorgeous Gems’ dress ($21.99) from Modcloth (now 70% off), cotton slub moto jacket ($39.00) from Dress Barn, & buckled faux suede booties ($29.80) in light grey from Forever 21. For some extra flair, since the Coley frames offer so much versatility, I styled the look with the Mossimo Supply Co. stud belt ($14.99) in grey from Target, a super cute novelty cat wallet ($14.95) in black from H&M, & lastly, Charming Charlie‘s fair & square earrings ($6.00) & big bash stretch bracelet ($10.00) in silver.

Warby Parker - Coley Crystal Night Look

 

For a professional & polished look when headed to work, I immediately thought of the Oliver frames in striped olive. The hue is spot-on for fall, & perfect for coordinating with neutrals like black, navy, chocolate, & charcoal. I was excited to style these frames with Dress Barn‘s solid cowl neck tank ($19.50) in olive, Jaclyn Smith’s tuxedo style knit jacket ($13.99) in black onyx from KMart, LOFT‘s ponte trouser pencil skirt ($69.50) in black, & DSW‘s Franco Sarto ‘Mumba’ pump ($29.94) in black.

Warby Parker - Oliver Striped Olive Work Look

Accessorizing when it comes to work looks can be tricky, especially when you want to impress your boss & colleagues, which is why I simply added the braided chain bracelet ($9.97) from New York & Company & the diamond texture full tights ($16.03) from Express. Both mixed metals & textured tights are staples for any fall wardrobe & allow for a sophisticated layered & interesting overall look.  

Warby Parker - Annette Petal Tortoise Weekend Look

Finally, my absolute favorite new design in the Wary Parker collection is the Annette frames in petal tortoise, which immediately makes me think of spectacle-wearing icons of old Hollywood. These are perfect for the weekend look since they capture the playful side of any Style Darling. I started building the outfit with the patterned cotton shirt ($29.95) from H&M, Old Navy‘s sweetheart gray super-skinny jeans ($34.94) in mudcave, & the Rocket Dog ‘Sayla’ vintage worn boots ($49.95) in mushroom from Zappos. For such a minimal outfit, I wanted to dress it up with some elegant & effortless accessories, which is what a weekend look is all about. For example, the gauzy crinkled infinity scarf ($9.99) from Charlotte Russe works well with the colors in the shirt. Also, I haven’t shared anything with pearls & here’s my chance with the pearl hinge bangle bracelet ($34.00) from BaubleBar & Ann Taylor‘s modern pearlized triangle studs ($29.50) in gold.

And since we’re still on the topic of glasses, I wanted to share some more notable designs in the collection, for their shape, colors, & androgynous appeal:

Warby Parker Fall Collection frames

The above styles include (clockwise, starting at upper left) Baxter Ti in sugar maple, Chandler Ti in English oak, Durand in whiskey tortoise, Greenleaf in woodgrain tortoise, Annette in striped sassafras, & Eli in crystal.

And if looking like a real life Clark Kent or the (insert your hometown here)-equivalent of Tina Fey isn’t enough, here are a few other incredibly attractive famous people to help inspire your frames fetish for fall! Whether you’re trying to recreate a vintage look, sport some menswear inspiration, or play with different trends, eyeglasses are a must-have, as seen on actress Anne Hathaway, musician / singer Alicia Keys, No Doubt frontwoman & fashion icon Gwen Stefani, R&B crooner Ne-Yo, mega hottie Ryan Gosling, & talented boy-next-door Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

Anne Hathaway, Alicia Keys, Gwen Stefani, Neyo, Ryan Gosling, & Joseph Gordon Levitt.

Which frames are your favorites? How would you wear some of these new designs? What trends are you most looking forward to during this season’s fashion week? Who are your favorite spec-donning celebs? For more fashionable posts, be sure to check out Emma Stone’s Venice Film Festival looks, buzzworthy music videos from Iggy Azalea & Nicki Minaj, shoe inspiration from Tom Ford, & budget-friendly skirts as seen on Chrissy Teigen & Lily Collins. Happy Styling!

P.S.: Thanks to Warby Parker for the exciting opportunity to form a marriage of stylish eyewear with Style Darling! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Basics For A Bargain: Best Coats To Buy Now, Inspired By Gwen Stefani, Victoria Beckham, Michelle Williams, & More!


The holidays are over, but the big sales are just starting. In an effort to wish the warmer spring weather on, retailers are getting a head start on their markdowns, especially when it comes to outerwear. If you live in the Northeast (like I do!), then you’ll know that the weather outside is quite frightful. After spending the day in NYC on Friday, I was plenty thankful for my recent investment in a new wool coat to keep comfortable amid gusty winds down the fashionable streets of the Big Apple. 

Celebrities are even breaking out their best in outerwear, including Kate Middleton in a belted Reiss Angel coat with suede knee boots. Supermodel Claudia Schiffer looks cozy in a retro 70s-inspired poncho-style coat with a middle part & suede-accented bag. Katie Holmes arrives for her appearance on Broadway in a knee-length coat, eggplant Dolce & Gabbana bag, & suede Rag & Bone booties.  Socialite & reality star Olivia Palermo hits the streets of Brooklyn in her fur-trimmed coat over leather leggings & knee boots.  Gwen Stefani always stands out, especially in her printed plaid coat with matching red lips & white-rimmed shades for a day out in London. Kate Middleton, Claudia Schiffer, Katie Holmes, Olivia Palermo, Gwen Stefani, Alexa Chung, Victoria Beckham, Leslie Mann, Jessica Chastain, & Michelle Williams

Alexa Chung enhances her shape with this waist-cinching grey coat, which is made all the more feminine with ankle-strap heels & a leather clutch.  Victoria Beckham never gets it wrong, offsetting her menswear look with a plum trench coat & pointy toe heels.  This Is 40 star Leslie Mann reinvents the look of a modern working mom with this tan coat over a leopard print dress for an appearance on Good Morning AmericaJessica Chastain poses for photogs after a performance of The Heiress, wearing a tan piped trench coat with grey knee boots & a leopard scarf.  Michelle Williams plays up her bombshell style with this fur-trimmed double-breasted coat & towering peep toe pumps.

Of course, you don’t have to be a celebrity to look great in outerwear, especially when so much of it is currently on sale.  I’ve selected ten coats of varying styles, all under $100, perfect for any shape & look. I start with $100 b/c a winter coat is something that will last you up to five months out of the year, which means that’s about $20 a month on a coat if you go out everyday to brave the elements. It’s always a good idea to consider how your clothing investments can pay you back, especially when looking for a basic necessity like outerwear.

First, if you’re looking to throw on something chic over your winter sweaters, check out the fur military cape ($67.99) in brown from Gap. If a printed coat is more your style, then the VS peacoat ($59.99) in plaid from Victoria’s Secret is great for dressing up basics like a pullover & jeans. @New York & Company, you’ll find the knit collar wool coat ($41.98) in black, which is currently marked down from its original $139.95 price.  By checking out the Juniors’ department @Macy’s, you can spot the Levi’s faux-fur collar anorak ($35.99) in navy, however it’s also sold in khaki if you want to avoid a denim-on-denim disaster. LOFT‘s blanket stripe wool blend zip coat ($129.99) is listed rather high in price, but due to the site’s current sale, upon checkout, the price automatically reduces to $65.00!

coats

I’m such a big fan of houndstooth in the winter, which is why I was excited to spot the Jaclyn Smith houndstooth coat ($51.99) from KMart, recently reduced from $129.99. For more fun with color, @JC Penney, the a.n.a. hooded peacoat ($30.00) in sangria/black is a must-have clearance item & is also available in ivory/black, which will contrast nicely with leather leggings or a skirt & knee boots. A classic silhouette can be found in the faux-fur trimmed puff sleeve coat ($69.99) in red from Express, which is also sold in pink & navy. The wool-blend cape coat ($29.97) in warm stripe from Old Navy is a great buy for the color-savvy Style Darling & sold in sizes XS – XXL. Finally, the most affordable of all is the quilted self-tie coat ($19.99) from Forever 21, which offers that regal Chanel look with a contemporary twist, especially when worn with a striking scarf in animal print or paisley.

Where do you find the best prices on coats? Do you like to shop after the holidays when there are big sales? What’s your favorite outerwear style? For more posts from Basics for a Bargain, check out 4 ways to wear floral pants from H&M, an LBD look for under $100, & pointy toe heels inspired by Miranda Kerr, Kerry Washington, & More! 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!

8/24/12 Darling Of The Day: Olivia Munn’s Geometric Dress From KMart!


Up & coming actress Olivia Munn has been making the rounds on the red carpet lately, especially having co-starred in this summer’s Magic Mike & The Babymakers, but also appearing on HBO’s The Newswoom doesn’t hurt either.  She’s getting  a lot of attention for her style, including this look which was spotted walking the streets of New York just recently, thanks to a post found on In Style.

She’s polished & on-trend with a colorful print, classic round toe pumps, & a confident smile, however what’s so great about this look is the fact that the Attention geometric print shirtdress ($17.49) is from Kmart! Look at the price on that dress & how effortlessly she’s wearing it.

Of course this can transition into fall with some dark tights & ankle booties, or even be worn these last few days of summer while running from the beach to a block party.  The dress runs typically for $24.99, but it currently on sale on the store’s website.  It’s available in sizes XS – XL, but also in an autumn orange color scheme as well.

Typically in my Darling of the Day posts, I find pieces to recreate the whole look, however I’m just so excited to share the dress that I will simply refer readers to Payless for the Brash Liv pump ($29.99), Forever 21 for the patent med shoulder bag ($29.80), & round sunglasses ($3.50).

What do you think of Olivia’s bargain dress?  Would you shop @KMart? Don’t forget that this isn’t the first KMart-related post to appear on Style Darling, since I’m a big fan of Sofia Vergara’s line, Sofia by Sofia Vergara & Selena Gomez’s Dream Out Loud collection.  Also, for more on Olivia’s style, be sure to check out the latest Top 10 Celeb Sightings post, images of her alongside Sarah Jessica Parker from I Don’t Know How She Does It, & an Express look from last year’s Darling of the Day! Happy Styling!

8/2/2012 Darling Of The Day: Kate Middleton & Christina Hendricks Colorblock With Bright Pants!


When I saw these looks worn by the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, & Mad Men star Christina Hendricks, I kept them in mind b/c I loved the bright bottoms worn by both Style Darlings.  Kate’s look is very casual, perfect for observing Olympic events, whereas Christina’s look is more feminine & polished while she walks the red carpet.

Since it’s summer time, a crisp white top, whether it be a polo shirt or a blouse, is always a stylish way to start building an outfit.  I’ve selected both looks to feature in Darling of the Day, especially since it’s been a while since my last post in this category.

To start building Kate’s look, I’ve turned to KMart for the polo shirt ($7.99) & paired it with the Stella colored jean legging ($79.90) in cobalt from Express. The price on the jeans may be high, but right now @Express, there’s a BOGO $29.90 sale on these jeans.  If you’re an Express credit card holder, you can earn coupons for up to $50.oo off! To complete this look, head over to Piperlime for the Nine West Skip N Jump wedges ($39.99) & Kohl’s for the Simply Vera Vera Wang silver tone simulated crystal ball drop earrings ($10.50).

If you’re looking for a dressier way of pairing your whites with bright bottoms, take a look at Christina’s ensemble, which can comprise affordable separates like the satin cascading ruffle blouse ($17.80) from Forever 21 & New York & Company‘s The Crosby Street city double stretch slim leg pants ($46.95). This outfit lends the perfect opportunity to play with prints & textures in your accessories, such as the Andiamo gavel pumps ($34.94) from DSW & Big Buddha handbag clutch ($24.99) from Macy’s.

To shop more colorful bottoms, inducing jeans, pants, & leggings, check out colored stonewash skinnies ($24.80) from Forever 21, stretch twill pants ($24.95) from H&M, Jessica London‘s color jeggings ($39.99), colorful skinny jean ($44.90 – $74.90) from The Limited, & the cafe capris ($39.99) from J.Crew. Also, for basic white tops to mix & match with other wardrobe staples, check out the burnout animal racerback tank ($9.99) from Charlotte Russe, The Gap‘s Essex sugar wash scoop tee ($19.99), the ASOS button down skirt ($33.14), the white zebra twist tee ($28.50) from Torrid, Old Navy‘s split-neck button-front blouse ($22.50).

For more celebrity-inspired posts, be sure to check out Blake Lively’s commercial for Gucci Premiere, Top 10 Celeb Sightings featuring Emmy Rossum, Katy Perry, Liv Tyler, & more, & Kate Hudson’s latest ad campaign for Ann Taylor.  Happy Styling!

Ad Madness: Pretty Little Liars’ Actresses Model For Bongo!


I should’ve known this already, but Bongo is still around! I recently spotted Pretty Little Liars actresses Lucy Hale & Ashley Benson rocking duds from the brand that is currently sold @Sears & KMart.  Aside from finding figure-friendly designs by the Kardashians @Sears, or getting your curve on with Sofia Vergara’s KMart collection, the department stores are revamping their apparel scene in a majorly stylish way! Of course, Bongo is a Juniors’-geared brand, but I’m also happy to share that they also sell plus-sized clothing, like colored denim jeggings ($16.00) up to size 22.  Not to mention, I’m loving Ashley’s sequin front tank top ($12.00$14.00) in the ad on the left!

For more celebrity-fronted ads, be sure to check out more from Ad Madness, including Mila Kunis for Dior & Chloe Grace Moretz for Aeropostale! Happy Styling!

Magazine Must-Haves: Adorable & Affordable Picks From People Style Watch’s August Issue!


Maybe I jumped the gun in creating this post, but one lonely Saturday night has brought me to do some in-depth blogging.  I received the latest issue of People Style Watch (August 2012) with the always gorgeous & funny Sofia Vergara on the cover.  I’ve searched high & low for an image of the cover, but cannot find it.  Of course, the magazine never uses actual photo shoots so finding the image shouldn’t be a problem. Anyway, my post tonight is more about what’s inside the mag…

I love this mag b/c it always makes me feel that even though I’m a budget shopper & don’t have access to brands like Givenchy, Yves Saint Laurent, or Dior, I can still dress like I look like a celebrity.  Here are some of my favorite pics from the issue that can be mixed & match with tons of wardrobe staples for this season & many more to come!

The faux patent platform pumps ($23.80) from GOjane are perfect for getting your red carpet look together- not to mention super sexy for pairing with any cocktail dress or a first date look.  If you’re looking to channel your inner Egyptian goddess, then head over to Mimi Boutique for the Abba gold jeweled collar necklace ($27.80).  Also, for some snake-inspiration, the two-tone hinge bracelet ($11.50) from GOjane offers a solution to any questions you may have about wearing both gold & silver.  Speaking of color, the colored jean trend isn’t going away, which is why I was excited to find these skinny jeans ($44.50) in lavender from American Eagle Outfitters, represented in the magazine with a shot of Jessica Alba wearing them!

For some more pop, Jennifer Lopez‘s collection for Kohl’s is bursting with color, especially this pleated poncho top ($22.00) in coral, which is currently on sale from its original $44.00 price. If you’re looking for a classic jacket, then check out the Route 66 medium wash denim jacket ($13.49) from KMart, which originally retails for $26.99.  This is the best way to keep cool-looking when worn with a linen skirt & some espadrille sandals.

Who doesn’t love a pencil skirt? The Worthington seamed pencil skirt ($22.00) from JC Penney is available in sizes up to 24W in a variety of colors to help show off your shape & personality.  One of my favorite stores is Forever 21, which has these cropped trousers ($22.80) that can help usher your summer pieces into fall, like a short-sleeved cardigan or sleeveless ruffled blouse, for a little menswear twist.  Lastly, I’m always up for the latest when it comes to accessories, which is why I’m so happy to also feature the pastry case pink and grey envelope clutch ($37.00) from Lulu’s.  This exact clutch is not featured in the magazine, but its colorful counterpart is.  This similar style is super trendy with its colorblocking & deco elements.

For more about the magazines, be sure to check out more from Magazine Must-Haves, Cover Craze, & Ad Madness! Happy Styling!

Quickie Darling Deal & Steal: A Top Shoe Pick From Sofia Vergara for KMart!


It’s not a secret that I love celebrity fashion lines, so I’m returning to one of my favorites & that is Sofia by Sofia Vergara for KMart.  The funny star of Modern Family understands the budget of a working woman, as well as her desire to look smart, sexy, & stylish!  I’ve featured Sofia’s line @KMart previously here & here b/c there’s just so much to love about the very affordable & wearable collection.

I’ve chosen this Harper suede & snake pump ($34.99) b/c it is so versatile for work, to dress up a day look, or to wear with any cocktail dress.  Not only is it available in a sultry black, but it’s also sold in nude as a perfect neutral to any printed sheath dress, vintage-inspired jumpsuit, or modern LBD.

The possibilities are endless on how to wear this shoe, but for the unbeatable price, it’s a must-have this spring.  Also, it’s one of those styles that you can wear all year long.  For example, in the fall, break out some super opaque tights to wear these with a belted sweater dress or any layered look of a blouse & cardigan with skinny pants.  In the winter, I’d recommend these with a wool suit for the office or even with a structured brocade dress which will offset the snake & suede textures very nicely.

For more of my favorite footwear picks, check out previous posts which include jellies from Express, starry ballet flats from ALDO, DexFlex scrunch flats from Payless, & Old Navy’s colorful espadrilles!

Have you shopped for anything from Sofia’s line? Do you like these shoes? What would you wear them with? Happy Styling!