Style Tip: No Ordinary Stripe Tops for Summer & Fall!


Whenever I see a garment or item, the imaginative wardrobe archive in my mind starts churning out options of how to style it. I love considering how a statement necklace can be worn with both a dress and blouse, as well as how a jacket can transform other separates. It’s very rare that I invest in an item that I can only wear one way, although there are some outfits that I’ve repeated because it just feels perfect, which is usually the case, I find, with summer clothing.

I was immediately inspired by the jersey top with ruffles @H&M as soon as I saw it an email I recently received. I began to consider its styling possibilities. I love the subtle ruffle sleeve detail, which elevates it as a trend piece above other long sleeve tops. I was a little hesitant to share this one top specifically & singularly because it is only available in sizes XS – XL. I’ve been on a mission to blog about pieces that can reach readers of any size or shape, which is why I set out to find another trendy red & white striped top for plus size shoppers too. That’s how I found the Belle + Sky off the shoulder top @JCPenney, another unique & fashionable shirt that’s a step above the ordinary stripe tee & can transform your summer style.

However, when looking at clothes, I also like to consider how many seasons a piece is relevant for, which is why I’m styling both tops with affordable options for the summer (because there is still plenty of the season left to enjoy!) and fall (an exciting time to play with texture).

SHOP SUMMER: zipper skirt @H&M, sandal flats @Payless, grape pom pom tote @Forever 21, palm tree earrings @Charming Charlie, & hammered gold necklace @Charming Charlie. SHOP FALL: ankle jeans @dressbarn, suede d’Orsay flats @Nine West, utility vest @Target, triangle studs @Charming Charlie, & satchel @Charming Charlie.

Stripes should never be feared by any shopper, especially when an off the shoulder trendy top is both flattering and versatile when headed to a night on the boardwalk or with a fall business casual ensemble.

SHOP SUMMER: shorts @Old Navy, wedges @Francesca’s, heart clutch @Express, necklace @Express, & charm bracelet @Forever 21. SHOP FALL: pixie pants @Old Navy, denim jacket @Lane Bryant, satchel @dressbarn, BCBGeneration heels @DSW, LC Lauren Conrad stud earrings @Kohl’s, & @LC Lauren Conrad layered pendant necklace @Kohl’s.

What items do you carryover from season to season? Where do you like to shop for trendy tops? What’s your philosophy on rewearing pieces in new ways? Do you like preppy & classic red & white stripes? For more fashionable posts, check out Charming Charlie’s pretty $5 stud earrings, Rachel Bilson’s Old Navy denim inspiration, cute olive pieces to transition from summer to fall, & the only navy heels you’ll ever need. Happy Styling!

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Splurge or Save… On Summer Gingham Tops!


When it comes to summer, there are so many prints that make for a fashionable look, but among them, gingham gets top billing! The typical gingham button down is classic for a variety of outfits, but this summer is all about the trendy, off-the-shoulder, ruffle, or halter gingham top available for shoppers of all sizes! Celebrities even love gingham, as seen on Baby Driver star Lily James, style blogger Olivia Palermo, singer / actress Vanessa Hudgens, A-lister & fashion mogul Reese Witherspoon, & Shameless actress Emmy Rossum.

For a trendy, one-season item like a gingham top, you don’t have to break the bank. There’s so much fashion out in the world & online for shoppers of all budgets, but I do love checking out high-end designer duds for a little inspiration when it comes to finding something to write about, as well as putting together my next outfit. Here are a few examples that range in price from $88 – $265, but still worth keeping an eye on for an end of the season sale item.

SHOP: Carmen blouse @White House Black Market, McGuire Florentine top @Saks Fifth Avenue, Rag & Bone off-the-shoulder Drew top @Neiman Marcus, Draper James Cloister top @Nordstrom, & Mindy Cindy one-shoulder top @Nordstrom.

The six gingham tops below are much more affordable & perfect for styling with white skinny jeans, red chino shorts, a denim skirt, or with bottoms in a bold pop of color like yellow, green, or orange.

SHOP: checked top @H&M, gingham tie top @Saks Off 5th, Design Lab blouse @Lord & Taylor, flounced gingham top @Talbots, plus off-the-shoulder lace-up top @Charlotte Russe, & plus one shoulder ruffle top @Lane Bryant.

Which summer trends are on your wardrobe wish list? Do you prefer the black, navy, or red gingham color scheme? Where are you shopping for summer favorites? 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: Budget-Friendly Earrings for the Jewelry-Obsessed ($15 & Under)!


My biggest style obsession this fall & really for 2015 is earrings, as seen in detail with my Instagram posts (Follow Style Darling Daily @MissAlissaL). I’ve rediscovered my love of the blingy accessory, especially since I’ve recently cut my hair, showing off my collection of studs, chandeliers, hoops, dangles, drops, front-to-backs, & jackets for the every day runway that is life. In an effort to save some cash, but still treat myself here & there, shopping for budget-friendly earrings has been my simple solution when it comes to transforming a look & when I’m in need of some retail therapy. Before I share some of my favorite & elegant picks for not just the season, but really any occasion, I loved the idea of seeking out some extra special inspiration from celebrities who are lucky enough to rock the real thing during red carpet appearances. Jennifer Lawrence, Cara Delevingne, Kerry Washington, Olgy Kurylenko, Chrissy Teigen, Angelina Jolie, Bella Thorne, Rihanna, Taylor Swift, & Jenna Dewan-Tatum.Celebrity inspiration for killer earrings comes in many metals, colors, & shapes, including some jaw-dropping duds for movie premieres, awards shows, & a slew of other special occasions. Get inspired to upgrade your street style with Jennifer Lawrence, Cara Delevingne, Kerry Washington, Olga Kurylenko, Chrissy Teigen, Angelina Jolie, Bella Thorne, Rihanna, Taylor Swift, Jenna Dewan-Tatum, & below on Jessica Chastain, Sofia Vergara, Chanel Iman, Kate Winslet, Drew Barrymore, Sarah Jessica Parker, Julianne Moore, Demi Lovato, Sarah Hyland, & Diane Kruger

Jessica Chastain, Sofia Vergara, Chanel Iman, Kate Winslet, Drew Barrymore, Sarah Jessica Parker, Julianne Moore, Demi Lovato, Sarah Hyland, & Diane Kruger.Of course, there are tons of retailers to select discounted fashion jewelry from, including multi-metal hoops that’ll take your blouse & skinny jeans from day-to-night, oversize studs from work to happy hour, clustered stones from a date to brunch, & other genius possibilities. What’s even better is that the below deals are all under $15.00!

Accessories Access - Budget-Friendly Earrings for the Jewelry-Obsessed $15 & Under!SHOP: 1.vintage hollow out earrings ($3.99, was $5.22) in gold @Romwe, 2. tassel earrings ($12.99) in purple @H&M, 3. filigree earrings ($10.00) in black @Dress Barn, 4. Milania dangle earrings ($13.00) in white @Charming Charlie, 5. evil eye earrings ($14.99) in silver / gold @Bollywood Chic, 6. round stud earrings ($9.00) in champagne @Francesca’s, 7. pave disc front & back earrings ($12.00) in gold @River Island, 8. clustered faux stone studs ($5.90) in antic gold @Forever 21, 9. carved cluster earrings ($5.00, was $9.50) in pastel @Icing, & 10. faceted kite earrings ($6.57, was $10.95) in black @New York & Company.

To shop more affordable earrings (where you can also watch out for great sales & coupons), shop Express, JC Penney, Kohl’s, Boohoo, LOFT, BaubleBar, The Limited, ChicNova, Lane Bryant, Target, Dynamite, Charlotte Russe, Belk, GOjane, & Zappos.

Where do you like to shop for fashion jewelry? What’s your earrings style? How many pairs of earrings do you wear daily? For more stylish posts, check out Olivia Palermo’s Victorian photo shoot for Holt Renfrew, how to get Victoria Beckham’s orange pants look for any size, Michelle Williams & Alicia Vikander for Louis Vuitton’s The Spirit of Travel, & fall flats for the office inspired by Emmy Rossum & Jennifer Lopez. Happy Styling!

10/28/2015 Darling of the Day: Victoria Beckham’s Preppy & Sleek Fall Street Style!


This isn’t the first time designer Victoria Beckham has surprised fashion critics with pops of color, & also her orange pants from 2013 have appeared again on the radar of bloggers everywhere. The former Spice Girls’ jet setting style has always looked flawless, especially when she models her own designs & now repeats favorites, showing that classic staples never go out of style. Get inspired by her sleek, clean look & embrace bold bottoms, topped with this season’s must-have accessory: a statement coat.

10-28-2015 Darling of the Day - Victoria Beckham's menswear style.SHOP: Misses Outfit: Oxford shirt ($24.94) in white @Old Navy (available in sizes XS-XXL), pants ($28.17, was $46.50) in roasted pepper @New York & Company, long coat ($62.90) in plaid @Forever 21, sunglasses ($15.95) in black @American Eagle Outfitters, Mix No.6 Sarti pumps ($39.95, was $80.00) in gray @DSW, & three-tone ring set ($20.93, was $29.90) @Express. Plus Outfit: shirt ($34.96, was $49.95) in white @Lane Bryant, pants ($14.97, was $79.90) in orange @Eloquii, coat ($39.90) in black & white @Forever 21, sunglasses ($15.95) in black @Walmart, Katie & Kelly Isabel pump ($29.94, $50.00) in gray @DSW,  & textured ring set ($10.00) @Charming Charlie.

What do you think of Victoria’s orange pants? How do you wear menswear inspiration for fall? Which celebrity’s style do you follow? For more stylish posts, check out Michelle Williams & Alicia Vikander for Louis Vuitton’s The Spirit of Travel, fall flats for work inspired by Emma Stone & Angelina Jolie, plaid favorites for this season like Reese Witherspoon & Rita Ora, & pretty fall florals for any body type!