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!

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Top 10 Celeb Sightings: White-Hot Red Carpet & Street Style from Allison Williams, Gigi Hadid, & More!


Summer is still in full swing, which means that it’s time (if you haven’t already) to break out your whites for some serious clean & crisp style when going out with the girls or headed to a party. Not only is white super hot for this time of year, but trends like mixing prints, pops of color, & classic silhouettes make for great choices when it comes to day-to-day style & special occasions. This is all made clearer by the fabulous red carpet & street style looks worn by our favorite A-listers for Style Darling Daily‘s most recent Top 10 Celeb Sightings post.

Allison Williams, Eva Longoria, Gigi Hadid, Jamie Chung, & Keri Russell.

Girls actress Allison Williams went head-to-toe white in a matching brocade top & trousers with pink teardrop earrings at the Broadway opening of Hamilton. The always flawless Eva Longoria was chic in a figure-friendly little white dress with a diamond cuff, metallic clutch, & nude pumps at the HollyRod Foundation’s 17th Annual DesignCare Gala. Model Gigi Hadid posed in a white monochromatic look of an oversize blouse (shop here), skinny jeans (shop here), denim jacket (shop here), & snakeskin pointy toe pumps for a promotion GUESS event. Actress / fashion blogger Jamie Chung walked her dog in mixed black & white striped separates with a blue bag, oversize sunglasses, & flat sandals. The Americans star Keri Russell went for a dramatic plunging kimono-inspired black Zuhair Murad gown with a lace beaded bodice & crepe skirt at the 31st Annual Television Critics Association Awards.

Mindy Kaling, Olivia Munn, Reese Witherspoon, Sarah Jessica Parker, & Zendaya Coleman.

Star & creator of The Mindy Project, Mindy Kaling, shimmered in an aqua sequin pencil dress with white pointy toe pumps at the Hulu 2015 Summer TCA Presentation. The statuesque Olivia Munn wore a fitted turtleneck sweater dress with black ankle strap Stuart Weitzman sandals (shop here) & a bright red lip at an appearance on The Daily Show with John Stewart. Oscar-winner Reese Witherspoon‘s street style is on point in a white tee with a floral print lace scalloped skirt, red flat strappy sandals, & canvas tote. Sex & the City‘s Sarah Jessica Parker hit the red carpet for the Broadway show Hamilton in an embroidered green Elie Saab Haute Couture ball gown with stacked bangles. Singer Zendaya Coleman wowed in a leather outfit including a cutout top & wide leg trousers by Solace London with strappy sandals & gold jewelry in New York City.

Which celebrity is wearing your favorite look? Whose whites work best? What’s your must-have summer look? For more stylish posts, check out 4 ways to wear a chambray shirt for summer, Kate Mara’s sleek red carpet style, shopping maxi skirts inspired by Beyoncé & Emma Roberts, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley’s new Fall 2015 denim campaign for Paige Denim, & how to restyle a bridesmaid dress from Weddington Way. Happy Styling!

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Style Tip: How To Dress Your Best For Your Body Type (Dedicated to Kerri)!


After a lot of research & gathering of information, I’ve FINALLY put together some really important tips for how to dress your best for your body type, especially after getting feedback from my friend, Kerri! Clearly, not all women are created equally & thank goodness for that! It’s about time I’ve addressed this issue, especially since the rules are always changing, but here are some very essential ideas in order to work your assets the best way possible for hourglass, diamond, rectangular / straight, inverted triangle, pear, & oval / apple body shapes.

How to style an inverted triangle shape

How to style a diamond shape. How to style a pear shape. How to style a straight shape. How to style an hourglass shape. How to style an oval apple shape.

What shape are you? How do you like to dress to best show off your curves or enhance your figure? For more stylish posts, be sure to check out complete red carpet galleries from the SAGs & Golden Globe Awards, celebrity-inspired spring dress predictions, how to style an affordable statement necklace, & Natalie Portman’s Dior look for less. Happy Styling!

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!

Red Carpet Review: 2011 SAG Awards (PART ONE)!


Last night’s Screen Actor’s Guild Awards were a red carpet dream come true, filled with florals, belted looks, sparkles, brights, & enough black & white to go around.  Oscar de la Renta was the most worn designer & the stars were frosted in names like Fred Leighton, Neil Lane, Chopard, Lorraine Schwartz, & Swarovski.  Scroll your mouse over each image to see who’s wearing which designers.

My favorite of the night was an unexpected ballerina-inspired pale pink Monique Lhuillier ruffled number that Angie Harmon wore, although some may say that its beauty was Oscar-worthy & too overdressed for this event. With that, here we have the ladies wearing blush & pink showing off their femininity & boldness.  We saw a splash of pink at last month’s Golden Globe awards with Claire Danes, Lea Michele, & Megan Fox.

We can see that Jennifer Lawrence‘s whirlwind award’s season is only getting better after her ruffled Louis Vuitton pick.  I can’t wait to see what she’ll choose to wear at the Oscars- she’s nominated for her gritty performance in Winter’s Bone.

 We saw Christina Hendricks & January Jones showing off their love of red, but here we have four looks (including one demure burnt orange, a little warmer than Emma Stone’s coral) proving that no gorgeous color or design can clash with the red carpet at this event if you’re confident.  Tina Fey‘s red Oscar de la Renta was a most unexpected choice for the usually conservative comedienne, but I’m sure critics will love her bold choice, especially after last year’s stunner. For more on Oscar de la Renta’s Spring 2011 collection, click here.

Other nominees lit up the red carpet with thier elegant choices, embracing a deep crimson, magenta red, & a pretty pumpkin.  These rich colors make for incredible photographs & remind us of how truly stunning the female form can look in a column-inspired gown.  Whather cinched at the waist or knotted for a Grecian-style, these dresses made each starlet look like a tall glass of glamour!

 

Everybody was dying to see what glowing mother-to-be Natalie Portman was going to wear & she turned this white Azzaro number into a ridiculously chic maternity gown that would put red carpet moms-to-be like Angelina Jolie, Heidi Klum, & Naomi Watts to shame. White was definitely on-trend with Amy Adams & a creamy Rosario Dawson presented her own interpretation as well! Winona Ryder‘s Alberta Ferretti creation reminded me so much of a modern-day version of this famous Marilyn Monroe dress.

  

It isn’t a true awards show without some sparkle.  Bejeweled looks have been a staple for the red carpet in recent years, as we’ve seen on Sandra Bullock, Claire Danes, & Cameron Diaz.  Adding glistening touches to dresses with color was a popular trend too!  It must’ve been winner & Oscar-bound actress Melissa Leo of The Fighter who stole the sparkle show with a fitted golden number & a plunging neckline.

While other sparkles were subtle & elegant, none could quiet compare, but we have to give it up to Eva Longoria & Jayma Mays for their stylish efforts.  We could look forward to some of these fabulous ladies at the upcoming Oscar ceremony- that’s for sure!

Glee stars Lea Michele (keeping with her Globes Oscar de la Renta choice) & Naya Ramirez were on hand to lend some youthful glow to this parade of glitters.  We can see the diversity in a plunging neckline, a modest one-shoulder, spaghetti straps, & a short-sleeved dress in a hint of periwinkle.

Well, there’s really only so much fashion a girl can handle, but I’m excited to report that tomorrow’s post will contain the dark, black, & purple dresses (like Dianna Agron), as well as the risk takers of the night (including one of my favorites- Claire Danes!).  Any questions, comments, or suggestions are always welcome!  Happy Styling!