Holiday Gift Style: Embellished Cardigans!


One of my latest obsessions this season, to pair with my other obsession: the pencil skirt, is an embellished cardigan. I’ve always been a cardigan girl, opting for the softness of a button-down topper that could be mixed & matched with skirts, jeans, pants, & even over a dress. This is the perfect season for just such a cardigan, one with dazzling sequins, beads, & stones, in designs inspired by a winter wonderland, feminine florals, or holiday sparkle. There are plenty of high-end cardigans on the market, but as always, I’ve selected some style that will surely fit any budget & heighten your holiday ensemble!

SHOP: black cardigan @dressbarn, cream cardigan @Target, red pearl crewneck cardigan @New York & Company (also available in black & white in sizes XS – XXL), red jewel collar cardigan @Walmart (also available in black, gray, & ivory in sizes S-XXL), heather cardigan @Macy’s (also available in pink & ivory in sizes XS-XXL), & black embellished neck cardigan @Nordstrom Rack (also available in gray in sizes S-XL).

Happy Styling!

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!

The Stylish Five: Trendy & Affordable Fall / Winter Must-Haves!


This time of year is ripe with fashionable possibilities, which is precisely what makes it fun to get dressed in the morning, finding new ways to express your style and personality. Of course, there are challenges when it comes to putting together a chic & effortless fall / winter wardrobe, mainly because of the changing weather, but also, if you’re stuck in a style rut, there are five fall / winter trends that will help elevate your look without having to invest too much cash into passing fashion fads that only work for certain body types. These include: layers, sparkle, prints, jewel tones, & lace. The savviest of Style Darlings can even take some of these trends to create a detailed & unique outfit.

SHOP: turtleneck poncho @Macy’s, plaid blanket scarf @Lord & Taylor, faux fur vest @Old Navy, hooded cape @Zulily, & oversized cardigan @The Limited.

SHOP: embellished sweater @Target, glitter skirt @Wet Seal, statement necklace @Icing, glittery platforms @Charlotte Russe, & sequined satin clutch @Forever 21.

SHOP: plaid shirt @H&M, houndstooth blouse @JCPenney, paisley dress @Forever 21, leopard scarf @Charming Charlie, & floral flats @DSW.

SHOP: velvet wrap dress @ASOS, cold shoulder top @Macy’s, zipper sweater @New York & Company, straight leg pants @The Limited, & midi skirt @Charlotte Russe.

SHOP: dress @H&M, tank @Gap, blouse @New York & Company, choker @Lulu’s, & pumps @Payless.

What fall / winter trend are you thinking about? Where are you shopping for the latest deals & style buys? Happy Styling!

06/21/2016 Darling of the Day: Blake Lively’s Yellow + Denim Combo Inpires Summer Style in New York City!


Blake Lively is making the style rounds to promote her latest film, The Shallows, taking advantage of every opportunity she can for a beautiful fashion moment. The actress donned her baby bump (#2 on the way for her & hubby Ryan Reynolds) like a prom queen / prep girl straight out of Gossip Girl (that’s really a compliment, folks!) after completing an appearance on NBC’s Today (in a stunning Elie Saab beaded frock & strappy Stuart Weitzman sandals seen here). While waving to photogs, Blake played up her yellow embellished Jenny Packham gown (see it here on the runway from the designer’s Fall 2016 collection) with a light wash denim jacket from Madewell (shop it here), printed Christian Louboutin ‘Kate’ chevron pumps (shop them here), as well as tons of turquoise, blue, & silver jewelry layered on to stay true to her bohemian aesthetic by Jennifer Meyer, Alison Lou, Mociun, & Lorraine Schwartz.

Blake Lively in a yellow Jenny Packham empire maxi dress with a Madewell denim jacket & printed Christian Louboutin pointy toe heels.What I especially love about this look is that it inspires new life into those gowns we all have from special occasions in the past. Since summer is all about maxi dresses, why not play with the styling possibilities & mix up your look with a staple like a denim jacket & fun footwear? That goes for classic prom dresses, perhaps something not so ball gown-shaped, as well as that bridesmaid dress tucked away in the back of your closet. Chiffon is a breezy, light weight material perfect to try on any look this season, maybe when you’re meeting with girlfriends for lunch, or headed to a museum or vineyard this weekend. Check out the inspiration below in dresses (not as glam as Blake’s but still hitting the sunshine-y notes of yellow) & accessories for budget shoppers who wear misses, plus, & petite sizes.

outfitsSHOP: Misses embellished neck maxi dress @boohoo, denim jacket @H&M, Steve Madden cork heels @DSW, Plus maxi dress @Forever 21, Westport denim jacket @Dress Barn, Christian Siriano Wide Width Kathryn pumps @Payless, Petite maxi dress @Dorothy Perkins, Style & Co denim jacket @Macy’s, & Jackpot pointy toe pumps @Nine West.

jewelrySHOP: stud earrings @Charming Charlie, silver tone ring @Kohl’s, turquoise ring @Bebe, circle round stone bracelet @Charming Charlie, & elephant tassel bracelet @Charming Charlie

If pictures & links don’t quite do it for you, be sure to check out this short video of Blake in action, flaunting her look with confidence & elegance, something I practice even when walking from my front door to the car & from the car to wherever life is taking me.

While we’re on the subject of one Blake Lively, it would be a waste not to share the gallery below of Blake’s flawless maternity style this spring during press appearances, hitting the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival, & maintaining her #styleicon status at the 2016 Met Ball.

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What do you think of Blake’s Jenny Packham-Madewell-Christian Louboutin ensemble? Can you envision something like this for yourself? How would you dress down a super fancy dress like hers? What do you wear in the summer to make you feel ultra confident? Which celebrities inspire your street style? Happy Styling!

Show Me The Shoes: Spring’s Trendy Fringed Suede Sandals for Under $40!


It’s hard to think about spring when a change in season is still so far away, but it’s easy-peasy to think about spring fashion since there’s so much of it already out in stores & online to shop through. Specifically, fringe was a big trend from last summer in kimonos & even for fall-winter with luxe poncho sweaters & capes. It doesn’t look like fringe is going away for spring either, especially when it comes to footwear. Fringed suede sandals are the perfect way to mix up your spring look, when traveling in a maxi dress, elevating your LBD, or dressing up some menswear with a feminine touch. When you’re shopping on a budget, but still looking to upgrade your style, finding a fly pair of sandals is a must, which is why the colorful four pairs below are my top picks (& they’re under $40)!

Show Me The Shoes - Fringed Suede Sandals

SHOP: 1. Qupid sandals ($20.00, was $38.99) in red @Charlotte Russe, 2. Chase & Chloe sandals ($26.97, was $64.95) in black @Nordstrom Rack, 3. sandals ($39.90) in taupe @Forever 21, & Steve Madden sandals ($32.25, was $129.00) @Macy’s.

Would you wear statement sandals like these? What shoe trend is currently on your mind? Where are you shopping for bargain buys for spring? For more stylish posts, check out style inspiration from Lupita Nyong’o & Victoria Beckham, Olivia Palermo’s collaboration with Chelsea28 for Nordstrom, & red carpet looks from Jessica Alba & Gigi Hadid. Happy Styling!

02/15/2016 Darling of the Day: Lupita Nyong’o Mixes Hard & Soft Like A Pro!


During a recent photocall for her new Broadway show Eclipsed, Oscar-winning actress & style icon Lupita Nyong’o made fashion headlines with a chic & modern combination of hard & soft in a floral button-down shirt, paired with a leather skirt & blue ballet flats. The sweet look is perfect for transitioning from day to night, going from the office to happy hour, as well as finding new ways to wear your favorite wardrobe staples while on a budget. 

Darling of the Day - Lupita Nyong'o

SHOP: American Living shirt ($38.99, was $49.50) @Macy’s, skirt ($22.90) in black @Forever 21, Tommy Hilfiger flats ($32.99) @6PM, & earrings ($5.00, was $12.50) @Icing. The total for this amazing look (before tax) is a whopping $99.88, an awesome bargain & inspiration for any shopper looking to pinch some pennies while not sacrificing her style. I’m always thinking about my readers of all shapes & sizes, which is why I also wanted to share some inspiration for a similar & fabulous plus-size look, including a Chaps shirt @Kohl’s & a faux leather Guess skirt @Lord & Taylor.

What do you think of Lupita’s winter-spring look? Would you wear floral with faux leather? Which celebs inspire you to experiment with your style? For more fabulous posts, check out Victoria Beckham’s latest street style, Olivia Palermo’s debut collection with Chelsea28 for Nordstrom, & red carpet inspiration from A-listers like Alicia Vikander & Lucy Hale. Happy Styling!

Top 10 Celeb Sightings: Winter Style Envy with Inspiration from Alicia Vikander, Jessica Alba, Olivia Palermo, & More!


Before we get into what’s going on in the world of celebrity style, I’d like to wish everyone a very happy & stylish 2016. I took a much-needed break from the blogosphere where I finished my thesis (a full-length memoir) & I’m on track to graduate with my MFA this May! Also, I tackled a busy holiday season of working 2 jobs (whilst finishing said thesis) & getting sidelined with 2 cases of laryngitis. However, in keeping with good news, I’m happily part of a new relationship, which is motivating me more to conquer 2016 with all things positive & stylish. I’ve learned that the key to any passion project (I’ve transitioned from thesis to blog) is to make sure your life is in order & in a good place before you can successfully dive into it.

In my absence, A LOT has happened when it comes to celebrity style & wow-worthy red carpet moments. With today’s major snowstorm (shutting down part of Long Island, at least), I finally have the opportunity to indulge in some fashion eye candy, catching up on the latest trends & getting inspired when it comes to a chic winter wardrobe. I scoured the web for this winter’s best red carpet & street style looks, planning on how I can add some sparkle & pastel to my regular rotation, as well as playing with monochromatic looks or menswear inspiration.

Alicia Vikander, Dakota Johnson, Gigi Hadid, Jessica Alba, & Jourdan Dunn.Oscar nominee Alicia Vikander’s monochromatic magenta included a satin cami crop top with a pair of culottes & satin Stuart Weitzman sandals (shop similar here @6PM) at the 31st Annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival. How To Be Single star Dakota Johnson looked minimalist at the AOL Build Speaker Series for her latest film in a sleek white off-shoulder crop top, pair of black trousers, Jennifer Fisher cuff, & black sandals (shop similar here @Dune London). Model Gigi Hadid kept cozy in Paris with a slouchy cowl-neck ivory One x OneTeaspoon sweater with destroyed cropped jeans (shop similar here @Old Navy), mirrored aviators (shop similar here @Charlotte Russe), a furry camel Katie Ermilio coat, & lace-up pumps. Mogul / actress Jessica Alba attended the Who What Wear x Target launch party in designs from the collaboration with a striped tee (shop here @Target), bold floral pencil skirt (shop plus size here @Target), moto jacket (shop here @Target), black clutch, & silver Brian Atwood pumps (shop similar here @Macy’s). Model Jourdan Dunn dazzled in a pearl & silver iridescent silk organza Ralph & Russo bustier dress with a pair of silver satin Ralph & Russo pumps at the Zoolander 2 premiere.

Lucy Hale, Naomie Harris, Olivia Palermo, Penelope Cruz, & Rachel McAdams.Pretty Little Liars star Lucy Hale showed her street style chops headed to the SiriusXM Studios in a black & powder blue flared look with a multicolored woven coat, an ear jacket, a color-block tote, & black pumps (shop similar here @Forever 21). Bond girl Naomie Harris went nautical in a sheer-sleeved white blouse with high-waist buttoned Burberry trousers (shop similar here @Dillard’s) at a party for Louis XIII ‘100 Years’. Style icon Olivia Palermo made the rounds at Couture Fashion Week in a black cowl-neck Iris von Arnim knit, nautical-inspired wide-leg pants, an olive fur stole (shop similar here @Bluefly), & matching mini top-handle purse. Spanish beauty Penelope Cruz sparkled in a custom gold chainmail Atelier Versace gown with a matching Versace clutch, sandals, & Chopard jewelry at the Zoolander 2 premiere. Oscar nominee Rachel McAdams wore a graphic Jonathan Simkhai little white dress with beige pleated Christian Louboutin shoes at the 31st Annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

Which celebrity is wearing your favorite look? Whose style inspires you the most? Which trends are you talking about this winter? Thanks so much to all of my readers for your continued support during my blog hiatus, especially on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, & Pinterest. Happy Styling!

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Basics for a Bargain: Cozy Capes & More Must-Have Fall Favorites, Inspired by Taylor Swift, Gwen Stefani, & more!


The weather has finally taken its turn for fall here on Long Island, so it’s definitely time to break out those layers to keep warm & build a stylish look. This starts with toppers like capes, ponchos, & vests, which are perfect for transitioning some of your favorite summer separates for this season. These chunky knits, fine wool, & fringed pieces are not only popular on street style pros of the blogosphere, but also some of the most fashionable celebrities, including A-listers like Taylor Swift, Gwen Stefani, Jamie Chung, Kim Kardashian, & Olivia Palermo.

Taylor Swift, Gwen Stefani, Jamie Chung, Kim Kardashian, & Olivia Palermo.Here’s also an opportunity for Style Darlings of any size to play with textures & prints like cable knit, faux fur, stripes, plaid, & fringe to mix with solid basics, pops of color, and complimenting patterns.

The Stylish Five - Capes, Ponchos, & Vests for fall & for all.SHOP: 1. faux fur mink cape ($69.90) in winter white @HSN (available in plus size, as well as brown & black), 2. stripe fringe poncho ($29.90) in black & white @Forever 21 (shop similar plus size here), 3. fringed cable poncho sweater ($42.00) in fig @Dress Barn (shop plus size here), 4. Ava & Viv plaid poncho ($34.99) in black & white @Target, & 5. everyday vest ($26.60, was $38.00) in black @Macy’s (one size fits all).

When wearing a full, flowy topper, the best way to show off your shape & stylish flare is to select a fitted, slim bottom to create a sense of balance. Also, these shapes are perfect to coordinate with knee boots, ankle boots, & other suede footwear for a head-to-toe fashion forward fall look.

What to wear with capes, ponchos, & vests.SHOP: 1. pencil skirt ($39.90) in black @Express (shop similar plus size here), 2. Levi’s skinny jeans ($36.99) in indigo @Kohl’s (shop similar plus size here), 3. faux leather pants ($24.99) in black @H&M (shop similar plus size here), 4. skinny cords ($34.94) in burnt ochre @Old Navy (available in sizes 0-20), & 5. seamless leggings ($6.94) in black @Walmart (shop similar plus size here).

How do you like to style capes, ponchos, & vests? Where do you like to shop for fall’s biggest trends? Which celebrity inspires your style this season? For more stylish posts, check out Olivia Palermo’s jewelry collaboration with Bauble Bar, red carpet & street style inspiration from Sienna Miller, Anne Hathaway, & Gwyneth Paltrow, as well as how to wear scarves like Rihanna & Jessica Alba. Happy Styling!

09/30/2015 Darling of the Day: Sienna Miller’s Three-Piece Jacket-Shirt-Jeans Outfit for Less!


Sienna Miller has had one stylish year, killing it at the Cannes Film Festival, & every red carpet she hits. The actress recently lent her support to the 2015 Social Good Summit where she mixed up fall’s best with a chic menswear look in a striped button-down shirt by Frame Denim (shop here) with black skinny jeans, a beaded black tweed Chanel jacket (shop similar here @Nordstrom), & black patent Mary Jane chunky heels (shop similar here @Saks Fifth Avenue). Get inspired by her menswear take with these affordable look-alike items, playing with texture, print, & layers for Style Darlings on a budget & any size.

Darling of the Day - Sienna Miller's menswear look for fall.SHOP: LOOK 1: textured scuba zip-front jacket ($40.00) in black @Dress Barn (shop plus size here), tartan plaid pocket shirt ($17.90) in black @Forever 21, original skinny jeans ($25.00, was $29.94) in black @Old Navy (available in sizes 00-20), chunky ankle strap heels ($24.99, was $46.00) in black @Cato, LC Lauren Conrad filigree ball stud ($10.00) in gold @Kohl’s, & GUESS enamel crystal ring ($13.50, was $18.00) in gold / black @Macy’s. LOOK 2: textured knit zip-front jacket ($40.00) in black / white @Dress Barn (shop plus size here), gradated stripe shirt ($22.90) in white / black @Forever 21 (available in sizes XL-3X), curvy skinny jeans ($25.00, was $29.94) in black @Old Navy (available in sizes 00-20), Gabriella Rocha ‘Sutton’ mary jane heels ($35.99, was 59.00) in black @6PM (available in wide width), Apt. 9 square stud earrings ($8.99, was $12.00) in rose gold @Kohl’s, & GUESS multirow crystal stone ring ($15.00, was $20.00) in rose gold @Macy’s.

Do you like Sienna Miller’s fall menswear look? How do you like to layer separates for fall? Where are you shopping for fall’s best trends? For more posts, check out previous posts featuring affordable looks inspired by Anne Hathaway, Gwyneth Paltrow, & Emily Ratajkowski, as well as the complete red carpet gallery from this month’s Emmy Awards. Happy Styling!

09/22/2015 Darling of the Day: Gwyenth Paltrow’s Monique Lhuillier-Inspired Look for Less!


Gwyneth Paltrow is always one to watch when it comes to celebrity style, never failing to impress since she made her red carpet mark back in the 90s. Lately, the actress has been turning heads with hints of skin, wearing bold head-to-toe monochromatic looks, & she continues to set trends for future Style Darlings. During her appearance at The Broad Museum Black Tie Dinner, she choose a modern take on an evening look with a boxy blouse & wide leg pants, both by designer Monique Lhuillier, & styled her ensemble with chandelier earrings by Norman Silverman & black pumps by Brian Atwood (which I would love to see, but I couldn’t find the pic!).

Gwyneth Paltrow in Monique LhuillierSHOP: LOOK 1: stripe floral blouse ($25.00, was $49.00) @Dorothy Perkins, pants ($11.67, was $20.95) in black @Romwe, Jennifer Lopez teardrop earrings ($12.10, was $22.00) @Kohls. LOOK 2: Vince Camuto top ($31.60, was $79.00) in clay @6PM, sailor pants ($16.99, was $24.90) in black @Forever 21, rhinestone drop earrings ($5.00, was $14.50) @Icing. LOOK 3: floral plaid top ($34.30, was $49.00) in black multi (available in sizes 14-32) @AvenueJM Collection pants ($34.98) in black (available in sizes 14 – 24) @Macy’s, pa earrings ($10.00) @Charming Charlie. LOOK 4: printed flared sleeve top ($59.50, use code PLAY for 30% off) in black & white @Eloquii, Alyx pants ($20.99, was $42.00) in black (available in sizes 1X – 2X) @JC Penney, crystal dangle earrings ($12.00) @River Island.

How would you recreate Gwyneth’s look? Would you wear wide leg trousers to a special occasion event like this? Where do you shop to make celebrity style a reality for your wardrobe? For more posts, check out the complete red carpet gallery from this weekend’s Emmy’s, shopping for the best end of the summer sales, Emily Ratajkowski’s suede skirt look, how to wear scarves all year long like Rihanna & Ashley Olsen, the plaid lookbook from Adam Lippes’ collection for Target, & fall’s must-have mustard pieces inspired by Blake Lively & Jennifer Lopez! Happy Styling!