Basics for a Bargain: Pencil Skirt Party for All Sizes!


Earlier in the fall, I was asked what trend I was most interested in, & I was surprised to realize that I’d been all about skirts because my spring & summer wardrobe was so fit & flare dress heavy. However, my flirtation with skirts isn’t exclusive to one style since I’m pretty psyched about all styles & how to explore separates combinations & playing with different patterns. Though, not all skirts are flattering for all body types, but one of the most classic styles that best fits & enhances any shape is the pencil skirt, which is versatile enough to pair with a variety of tops to take you to work to date to weekend & everywhere in between.

Take some inspiration from some iconic television characters who’ve always looked their best on the small screen in pencil skirts, including Christina Hendricks as Joan Holloway on Mad Men, Mindy Kaling as Dr. Mindy Lahiri on The Mindy Project, Emma Roberts as Chanel Oberlin on Scream Queens, Kim Cattrall as Samantha Jones on Sex & the City, & Taraji P. Henson as Cookie Lyons on Empire.

You don’t have to break the bank either to find a pencil skirt for you, especially when they’re available in nearly every size, pattern, color, & material. Try a pencil skirt for your next office look with a denim button down shirt, a polka dot cardigan with a striped skirt, or a graphic tee tucked into a brocade skirt. The styling possibilities are endless & evident in the countless posts I’ve previously shared in the past, including inspiration from Lauren Conrad & Kerry Washington, Reese Witherspoon’s floral take on pencil skirts, & style steals straight from the red carpet on Cate Blanchett & Michelle Obama! Also, here are just a few ways I’ve been wearing pencil skirts lately!

So if you haven’t already, take the plunge with a sleek & elegant pencil skirt. Check out these ten affordable picks below to get your holiday, fall, & winter style in gear! Not to mention that most pencil skirts are perfect for year-round wear, which makes the challenge of styling them all the more thrilling!

SHOP: 1. plaid skirt @The Limited (available in sizes 0-18), 2. Thalia Sodi leopard skirt @Macy’s, 3. Worthington woven skirt @JCPenney (available in sizes 4-18 & petites), 4. denim skirt @Nordstrom Rack, & 5. sweater skirt @Old Navy (available in XS-XXL, tall, & petite).

SHOP: 6. lace skirt @dressbarn (shop plus size here), 7. pinstripe skirt @H&M, 8. faux leather skirt @New York & Company (available in sizes 0-20), 9, windowpane skirt @Target, & Melissa McCarthy leopard skirt @TJMaxx (available in 1X-3X).

How do you like to style pencil skirts? What colors or patterns are you most drawn to? Where do you like to shop for basic bargains? Happy Styling!

Runway Rundown: Lauren Conrad’s Newest Collection for Kohl’s!


I can appreciate celebrity collaborations with fashion designers, as well as the special one-time only capsules with celebrity inspirations, but most of the time, the prices & styles aren’t necessarily accessible to the mainstream Style Darling. Clearly, there is an exception to that & that’s Lauren Conrad‘s new LC Lauren Conrad for Kohl’s collection. Not only is the reality star-turned-fashion mogul sharing a sneak peek on her website, but she’s also conducting a contest to win $100 to shop her collection at the department store. The designs are clean, feminine, & versatile for a variety of looks, which is why I love featuring her collections with my readers.

LC Lauren Conrad for Kohl's Fall '14 Collection 01 LC Lauren Conrad for Kohl's Fall '14 Collection 02 LC Lauren Conrad for Kohl's Fall '14 Collection 03 LC Lauren Conrad for Kohl's Fall '14 Collection 04 LC Lauren Conrad for Kohl's Fall '14 Collection 05

For more details on the contest, check out the rules here. Which look is / pieces are your favorite? How would you style these separates? What’s your favorite Kohl’s shopping experience? Also, to check out some of Lauren’s previous collections, hit up the following links: July 2013 lookbook, Spring 2013 gallery, & the holiday collection! Happy Styling!

Runway Rundown: A Sneak Peek At Lauren Conrad’s July Lookbook For Kohl’s!


It’s one stylish world out there & I’m trying my very best to share all the latest news, including fashions that are not only chic for every season, but also affordable! Yesterday, when I was scanning my Facebook newsfeed, I found images from Lauren Conrad‘s latest LC Lauren Conrad Collection for Kohl’s, including plenty of summer-friendly looks for day & date.

LC Lauren Conrad's July Lookbook for Kohl's

These shots not only make me wanna go shopping, but also re-style some of my favorite pieces like a printed maxi dress with flip-flops or a lacy cocktail dress with wedges. Also, I love her flirty ponytail without a frizz in sight. Great job, LC!

For more from Lauren Conrad, check out previous posts including galleries for Paper Crown, flirty spring must-haves, holiday inspiration, & a look back at last fall’s line! Happy Styling!

Cover Craze: Shakira Sizzles For ELLE’s July Issue, Katy Perry Makes Her Vogue Debut, & More!


It’s definitely going to be one hot summer, especially when it comes to the latest magazine covers. I’ve been trying to squeeze in some mag time & get inspired for some new summer looks & what to look forward to with my upcoming vacation wardrobe. However, I couldn’t help but share the latest & greatest in store for July, especially when the headlines there’s so much to talk about!

First, Shakira hits up ELLE, talking about her position as coach on The Voice, along with motherhood, her relationships, & her international fame. Also, another foreign beauty is Salma Hayek Pinault on the cover of InStyle‘s July issue. The dazzling 46-year-old actress has really never looked better, especially in this stunning Yves Saint Laurent red dress. The third & perhaps most exciting cover belongs to Katy Perry who makes her Vogue debut, showing off a stunning & feminine side to the popstar in floral frocks like her cover look by Rodarte. Lauren Conrad talks up her ambition & goals as both fashion designer & writer in the sunny pages of Marie Claire, while also giving plenty of tips on how to look summer-ready with bangs.

Man of Steel starlet Amy Adams is not only this summer’s big-screen Lois Lane, but she talks beauty in the pages of Allure, sharing that her plain face makes for a great makeup canvas. Speaking of beauty, Pretty Little Liars actress Lucy Hale makes her Lucky debut with a slew of edgy menswear looks, including pieces by Chanel, that are easy for any shopper of any budget to achieve! Helena Bonham Carter may be Tim Burton’s muse, but she’s certainly bemusing in the pages of Vogue UK, especially since images have recently hit the web of her playing the iconic role of Elizabeth Taylor for the upcoming BBC movie Burton and Taylor. Lastly, Kesha makes fitness look sexy, especially with a minimalist take on activewear fashions in next month’s Self. The blonde singer has never looked more naturally gorgeous as she talks about how she keeps her gams in shape!

For more celebrity posts, check out the commercial for Adam Levine’s debut fragrance, gorgeous red carpets looks from Diane Kruger & Uma Thurman, Lily Collins’ girly Glamour cover, & the newest ad campaign from Prada starring Christoph Waltz & more! Happy Styling!

Cover Craze: Miley Cyrus Bares It For Cosmopolitan, Victoria Beckham’s Leggy ELLE Cover, & More!


January isn’t even over yet, but there’s major buzz surrounding the upcoming March 2013 covers of the most popular fashion magazines, which is why I’ve updated Cover Craze. I guess this is natural, considering all the talk about spring fashion, upcoming films this year, & throngs of celebrities about to hit the red carpet for the Oscars. I’m sure there’s more to come since I haven’t seen what’s in store yet for Harper’s Bazaar, Shape, Self, Redbook, Marie Claire, Allure, or Elle in March.

The always stunning Dakota Fanning covers Glamour in a cute Mickey Mouse sweater, discussing the controversy behind her 2011 ad campaign for Marc Jacobs‘ fragrance Oh, Lola! Next, it seems that Lucky gets Lauren Conrad on their cover at least once a year & March is all about the designer behind Paper Crown & LC Lauren Conrad for Kohl’s, who always gets the cat-eye right & talks about how she maintains her sleek straight locks. New mom Megan Fox takes on Marie Claire UK in a printed one-piece, opening up about her marriage, motherhood, & about her next career move.

Dakota Fanning for Glamour, Lauren Conrad for Lucky, Megan Fox for Marie Claire UK, Miley Cyrus for Cosmopolitan, Michelle Williams, Rachel Weisz, & Mila Kunis for InStyle, & Victoria Beckham for ELLE UK.

Miley Cyrus has once again proved that she’s not a little girl anymore on the cover of Cosmopolitan, revealing more than just her cleavage. She talks about her latest album, being friends with Katy Perry, & prioritizing her relationship with her fiancé. The stunning co-stars of Oz: The Great & Powerful, Michelle Williams, Rachel Weisz, & Mila Kunis, share the cover of InStyle in romantic pastel looks, as we anticipate at least three upcoming red carpet premieres for the fantasy Disney film. Lastly, Victoria Beckham takes over ELLE UK, wearing only best, including Lanvin, Burberry, Miu Miu, & of course her own brand. The hard-working designer candidly explains her work ethic, trust issues, & what’s next for the Beckham brood in 2013.

For more magazine-friendly posts, check out Emmy Rossum talking about her latest musical project with Self, Heidi Klum’s sexy Marie Claire cover, Carrie Underwood’s life on tour with Allure, & Claire Danes conspicuous pregnancy looks for ELLE! Happy Styling!

Runway Rundown: Lauren Conrad’s Stylish Spring 2013 Paper Crown Collection!


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It was only a few days ago that I shared a gallery of Lauren Conrad‘s Spring 2013 Collection for Kohl’s, featuring classic separates, feminine pops of color, & spring-ready dresses for a date; however the former reality star has also created a fabulous Spring 2013 line for her luxury brand, Paper Crown. The combination of belted & minimalist maxi dresses, luxe button-downs with chiffon accents, leather leggings paired with oversized matte sequins, & timeless pieces for day, date, & the office offers a variety to mix & match with any wardrobe. Of course, Lauren’s ladylike prepster style will resonate with the J. Crew / Banana Republic / Lulu’s shopper & I’m crazy about the details like cream lace, soft bows, a relaxed fit.

Would you wear any of the pieces in this collection? Do you like Lauren’s style & taste for this line? Do you follow celebrity-turned-designer brands? For more galleries, check out posts including the red carpet looks from this weekend’s SAG Awards, the latest Pre-Fall 2013 Collection from Rachel Roy, & the Prabal Gurung for Target lookbook! Happy Styling!

Color Me Style: Hello Yellow For Winter & Spring, Inspired By Emmy Rossum, Miranda Kerr, Anna Kendrick, & More!


Yellow is one of those colors that’s always a little risky to wear out on the red carpet, but when it’s done right, it can look really spectacular.  Not to mention that the color is coming back for this season (following right behind emerald trends), which we’ve seen on some of today’s most stylish celebrities.  This includes former Grey’s Anatomy star, Nora Zehetner wore a minimalist Calvin Klein Collection sheath mini at a Metropolitan Museum of Art event last month. Lauren Conrad showed off her feminine side, as usual, in a bright Yoana Baraschi dress with suede neutral pumps. Actress Kate Mara looked stunning in a Dior shift dress at the London premiere of House of Cards with a suede box clutch by Nancy Gonzalez & satin peep toe pumps.

Nora Zehetner, Lauren Conrad, Kate Mara, Emmy Rossum, Anna Kendrick, & Jada Pinkett Smith.

Shameless star Emmy Rossum also donned Dior with a metallic minaudiere & strappy black sandals. For an interview on The Late Show with David Letterman, Anna Kendrick asymmetrical sheath dress by Halston Heritage is offset by nude peep toe pumps & jewelry by Dana Rebecca Designs. Lastly, during a recent appearance on Katie, Jada Pinkett Smith slipped into a curve-hugging Victoria Beckham dress with towering, patterned platform pumps.

It wasn’t heard to search the web for some cute & affordable yellow dresses to wear with your favorite evening shoes, collar necklaces, stacked bangles, or statement rings. Yellow dresses are also popular in pastels like the cutout ribbon back dress ($27.80) from Forever 21, which is described as “citron.” @Macy’s, the Bar III cap-sleeve seamed scoop neck dress ($29.99) is marked down from its original $69.00 price tag.  For a figure-flattering, sexy dress, the ASOS wrap front pencil dress ($56.29) is the perfection attention-grabbing option, especially is paired with strappy sandals, or belted & worn under a boyfriend blazer.

The Ark & Co ‘Swept Away’ strapless dress ($46.00) from Lulu’s is a pretty option, especially if you want to show off your décolletage with a spiked necklace & messy updo. Lastly, the Mossimo casual one-shoulder dress ($24.99) from Target is a flowy & flirty number to wear casually with gladiator flats when on vacation, or with a velvet bolero & textured tights.

Also, yellow separates really make an outfit pop, so if you’re wearing neutrals, this bright color can really work the value of basics like dark denim jeans, a black sweater, or a mini skirt. Take a cue from Olivia Palermo‘s wool-blend coat from Old Navy with leather leggings & oversized turtleneck. Also, supermodel Miranda Kerr tops off her casual look with a yellow blazer, perfect for a chic day out shopping. Kirsten Dunst played with yellow in her printed Stella McCartney separates at the premiere of The Bachelorette with ankle strap suede heels. 

Olivia Palermo, Miranda Kerr, Kirsten Dunst, Kim Kardashian, & Taylor Swift.

Kim Kardashian‘s colorblocked look made headlines, especially with her sophisticated Chloé blouse & mary jane Christian Louboutin platforms. Taylor Swift plays up her girl-next-door style in a pleated yellow skirt, also by Chloé, with a tucked in cable knit sweater & bowed ballet flats.

Get inspired to add some yellow thoughtfully to your look with these affordable pieces.  First, the Tinley Road Bleecker blazer ($39.99) from Piperlime is fun to wear over an LBD for the office, or to dress up a graphic tee & jeans with pointy toe pumps. You can head to Express to find the mesh inset blouson tee ($24.90) for floral pants, satin shorts & tights, or tucked into a brocade pencil skirt. Another top worth considering is the blouse ($29.95) from H&M to coordinate under an embellished cardigan, over a silk cami, or with a contrasting hue like red or cobalt jeans. Also, Piperlime‘s Greylin Viv ponte pencil skirt ($42.99) is a timeless basic to match with a printed top or classic & crisp button-down shirt.

Accessories in yellow aren’t hard to come by either… & there’s always a place in your look for this color. The embossed skinny belt ($14.99) from Coldwater Creek is currently half off & will add a special touch of texture to tweed or suede pieces. I also love the fringed drop earrings ($6.80) from Forever 21, which will work for an evening look with a cocktail dress & even bring out the personality of a tropical maxidress in the summer.

You can never go wrong with yellow shoes. I am the proud owner of at least three pair & I don’t mean that they’re gold- they range in the banana to mustard hues & I’ve found so many uses for them. I love the Steve Madden Rockkk flats ($29.99) from 6pm, which originally cost as high as $60.00 when they hit the market. Finally, for the shoe-lover out there, the Michael Antonio Tracey sandal ($29.94) from DSW offers a sexy way to show off your gams, while still embracing the color yellow.

Do you like to wear yellow? Which celebrity do you think pulls off yellow the best? Do you have a favorite yellow piece that you like to incorporate into your look? For more affordable fashion ideas, check out posts including stylish cardigans $20 & under, polka dot pants for any season, Victoria’s Secret’s latest nail polish launch, & fabulous flats by Fergalicious on clearance! Happy Styling!

The Stylish Five: Glittering Cocktail Rings For The Holidays ($10 & Under)!


I’ve been talking a lot about classic stud earrings & statement necklaces for the holidays, but you can’t forget about the joys of cocktail rings.  A special piece of bling on your finger while sipping a glass of wine is always a great way to toast the season.  It wasn’t hard to search for fantastic accessories to pair with your metallic dresses, embellished tops & brocade skirts, or silky pants & pointed toe pumps. 

I love Charlotte Russe‘s glitter gemstone dome ring ($6.00) in mint, which will ass a splash of color to any pewter & gunmetal look, while bringing out richer hues like teal, oxblood, & navy.  A little gold never hurts, which is why I’m recommending the brushed goldtone fashion ring ($8.00) from JC Penney, in case you’re looking to change things up while wearing chandelier earrings. 

The Stylish Five

For a flirty & elegant touch, the LC Lauren Conrad gold tone simulated pearl heart ring ($9.80) from Kohl’s to offset any lacey frock & satin bowed pumps.  @Payless, you can find the Minicci filigree rhinestone ring ($4.00) for a decadent addition to your luxe baroque outfit.  Lastly, the twisted teardrop ring ($6.80) from Forever 21 is an antique piece, essential for a variety of looks including how to contrast a plaid shirt & pencil skirt as a cocktail hour reinvention. 

Which ring is your favorite? How much do you like to spend on fashion jewelry? What details to you seek when it comes to your holiday style? Happy Styling!

Haute Headlines: Amanda Seyfried for Vanity Fair, A Review of ‘Liz & Dick,’ Cool Gift Ideas For The Holidays, & More!


Maybe you’re done with your holiday shopping… or maybe you’re not, but either way, there’s lots going on in the fashion industry, entertainment world, & with pop culture, so I decided to take a little break from the trials of online bargain hunting to share with readers the latest news in Haute Headlines.  What stories are you following this week? Happy Styling!

*Kate Moss poses nude for Vogue Spain*

*James Franco & Lindsay Lohan in the latest R.E.M. video “Blue”*

*Lady Gaga raps for Terry Richardson in new video clip*

*FabSugar‘s best accessories picks for a wardrobe upgrade*

*Miranda Kerr becomes the new face of Mango*

*‘Liz & Dick’ premieres tonight, get your look at an early review*

*Redbook‘s 50 cool gift ideas under $50*

*Lauren Conrad & Dianna Agron don the same frock- Who wore it best?*

*Keira Knightley talks to Allure with photos by Mario Testino*

*Les Mierables star Amanda Seyfried gets a Vanity Fair spread*

Basics For A Bargain: The Hottest Tops & Pants Looks Worn By Kristen Stewart, Alexa Chung, Kate Hudson, & More!


I’ve never been a dress pants kind of girl- until lately.  I was always the girl walking around in a skirt or dress b/c those pieces were just always easier for me to find since I wear petite bottoms in most cases, but also have a curvy shape.  However, I’m inspired by these tops & bottoms (pants, more specifically) looks that I’ve been spotting on the most photographed & stylish celebrities.

This includes actress Rashida Jones in jewel-tone trousers by Theyskens’ Theory paired with a studded blazer, an eggplant blouse, Graziela earrings, a Dana Rebecca Designs ring, & metallic cap toe pumps.  This look says so much about her edgy, but conservative style.  The rich hues combined with the luxe fabrics make looking like you’re wearing pajamas with an 80s-esque jacket look super cool.  Next is K-Stew herself, Kristen Stewart, wearing a daring Balenciaga design with a Cartier bracelet, & sleek Christian Louboutins. Critics are calling this look a ripoff of the barely there bra-top & bare midriff look that the blonde-coiffed Miley Cyrus has been sporting, but I think The Twilight Saga star has got it right here. French import / Bond girl Berenice Marlohe is ravishing in colorblocked black with feathers & a white top by Alexander McQueen, Norman Silverman studs, & Sergio Rossi pumps. I love her smoky eye, yet mature Blake-Lively inspired beachy locks, providing a fresh take on an unlikely pairing.

Kate Hudson is a vision in Alexander McQueen menswear with towering Brian Atwood pumps at the Glee premiere in September, while donning a sexy lace cami underneath.  Style icon Alexa Chung has never looked sleeker in this Maje button-down shirt & slacks with minimalist black pumps- again another menswear-ish look that couldn’t be more fabulous.  Lastly, reality star Olivia Palermo is getting on board with the volume trend wearing an Elin Kling for Marciano oversized sweater with cropped pants, ankle-strap Gucci sandals, & tribal-inspired accessories.

I gave myself the daunting task (while the power could hold out during the crazy snow storm that hit the Northeast on Wednesday) to try & replicate these looks- all in one post! Of course, I’m still working on those PhotoShop skills, but I’m happy to share affordable versions of these six looks, which cost b/w $41.50 – $124.99. If you take a look below, you’ll see that I’ve recreated the pieces of clothing from Rashida’s look, including a textured Lark Lane foil-print zip jacket ($45.00) from JCPenney, the Honey Punch ‘high-waisted hopes pants ($42.00) in red from Lulu’s, & the LC by Lauren Conrad embellished chiffon blouse ($26.40) from Kohl’s. Kristen’s look was tougher to put together, but a daring Style Darling can certainly pull off the stretch lace bralette ($24.50) from Victoria’s Secret & pair it with White House Black Market‘s legacy bi-stretch modern bootcut pant ($49.99).

For Berenice’s look, I couldn’t find feathers, but the peplum trend was easy to put together when I found the laser cut dot peplum tank ($21.99) from Charlotte Russe & the Lauren Jeans Co. Biltmore trouser pants ($44.99) @Macy’s. A winter white tuxdeo on a budget was an even trickier ensemble to recreate, but Kate’s look wasn’t too far off when I found the Bar III three-quarter open-front tuxedo blazer ($26.99) from Macy’s & the White House Black Market modern bootcut tux pant ($98.00). Alexa’s look is comprised of pieces from Forever 21, including the tail hem shirt ($18.90) & coated trimmed trousers ($22.80). Lastly, Olivia’s look was perfectly timed now that heavy knits are in stores, & I selected The Limited‘s cowlneck poncho ($49.99) & Logan fit slim ankle pant ($49.99) from Banana Republic.

For more celebrity-inspired posts, check out features in Red Carpet Review, Darling Of The Day, & Top 10 Celeb Sightings.  Also, if you’re looking for the best ways to acquire an affordable wardrobe, take a look at updates blogs in Basics For A Bargain, Luxury Look-Alikes For Less, The $100 Challenge, & Splurge or Save?! Happy Styling!