Why Say “Or” When You Can Say “And” (For These Maxi Dresses)?!

I know I’m not the first to say that buying “one in every color” is worth the investment, but if there’s a staple piece of clothing (or accessory) that you love & just can’t live without, when why not? I have this philosophy typically when ti comes to cardigans & ballet flats, but with a busy summer ahead, I’m also applying this philosophy (& maybe fashion addiction excuse?) to the Goddess maxi dress @New York & Company.

I was first introduced to this dress last year & have since bought it in EIGHT different colors. It is super fashionable, very comfortable & breathable, & really, a classic maxi dress style that I will continue to wear for more summers to come. Truth: I bought it when I was very VERY pregnant last summer, which gave my big baby belly lots of room, but this is not a maternity dress. The banding underneath the bust was very forgiving & even now (not pregnant), I’m loving the flowing long skirt, which flatters my shape now. Not to mention that this dress can be style in a multitude of ways, easy breezy for weekend errands or dressed up for a special occasion! Most colors are available in sizes XS- XXL, which means that this dress really is for everyone!

I love accessorizing this dress with any number of cropped cardigans, long necklaces, oversized earrings, a denim jacket, & studded sandals. Every color of dress is a great foundation for some summer fun, coordinating with playful watermelon or pineapple accents, gawdy golds, or crisp white pieces.

SHOP: black pointelle shrug @dressbarn (shop plus size here), rimless gradient sunglasses @Forever 21, rose gold strappy sandals @David’s Bridal, stone pendant necklace @LOFT, large drop earrings @H&M, & charm bracelet @H&M.

How would you style these bold, feminine maxi dresses? What style dress is your favorite for summer? Where you headed on vacation this season? What stores are you shopping for best deals on summer must-haves? For more stylish posts, check out Old Navy’s cute flip flops, trendy resin earrings, & stylish summer hats inspired by Jessica Alba & Suki Waterhouse! Happy Styling!

Show Me the Shoes: Summer-Ready Sneakers for $10-$15!

Summer is all about no-fuss style. While I sometimes fuss & muss over what I’m going to wear in order to be comfortable when running from work to do some errands to going out with my beau, the temperature continues to rise. Effortless comfort is most important in the end, even when I want to wear a scuba dress & some wow-worthy high heels. However, what’s more fuss-free than a canvas sneaker? I know, some jaws might be hitting the floor at my mention of a sneaker here on Style Darling Daily.

I’ve never been much of a sneaker fan, only because I don’t find most sneakers attractive. I’ve owned the same one pair for years that I’ll break out for the occasional woodsy walk or hiking venture. Sneakers have an athletic function & not much of a presence in my life when I’ve found so many comfortable ballet flats that I can wear for work & while going about my daily routine. Aside from that, sneakers have just never equaled fashion to me… until now. Sneakers have taken on this whole new street style vibe, as seen on celebrities in Converse & tennis shoes, such as style icon Olivia Palermo, singer Rihanna, performer Dita Von Teese, as well as models Gigi Hadid & Karlie Kloss.

As a kid, I grew up wearing Keds-adjacent sneakers since the look-alikes at Caldor (remember Caldor?) & other bargain-centric stores were just more reasonable for my budget-conscious family. The white canvas material would only stay white for about a day until the remnants of nature, as well as the wear & tear of childhood stained the exterior. Honestly, I never quite looked back on that shoe style until today when I received an email from Payless about their latest canvas collection, featuring shoes in up to 17 different colors & pattern varieties, ranging in a limited time sale price from $10-$15, available in women’s sizes 5-13, with their summer-ready American Eagle Bal Sneaker.

When I ooo-ed & ahh-ed at these cute options, I began to imagine how to style these sneakers, especially with sweet & casual summer dresses. Of course, any of these dresses can be worn with wedges, sandals, or heels to add a little more dressy flair when headed out for a night on the town, but why not consider a sneaker if you’re going to the local carnival, on a sunset walk, or just enjoying a casual lunch with some friends?

This Westport belted denim shirt dress @dressbarn (available in plus) is just one of the many versatile denim options for the tan linen sneaker, especially when neutrals are just so easy & classic to style. Try this look with textured hoop earrings & classic bangles & you’ll be ready for anything!

The yellow-red combination might not be for everyone, but the primary color mix of the linen blend swing dress @Old Navy (available in sizes XS-XXL) with the bold red sneakers is a daring & summery way to play with color blocking, especially when paired with a denim jacket & layering necklaces!

White is the color of the summer & you really can’t go wrong with this ruffle off the shoulder dress @Express when looking at all the footwear possibilities. You could wear the purple eyelet or the dark blue stripe one day & then embrace the chambray polka dot sneaker the next! This look can be styled with some colorful tassel earrings & a basket weave belt too!

Some days, even in the summer, we just wanna wear black. Maybe it’s a New York thing, but here we can turn the dark hue into something playful & casual-chic with the plus cargo dress @H&M & the black eyelet sneakers. Try a gold chain choker & chunky ring to dress up the monochromatic look!

Lastly, use online coupon code 15CANVAS for an additional 15% off, expiring 07/09/17, because we could all use a little help when it comes to summer shopping! What’s your take on the summer sneaker-dress combination? What color combinations are you looking to try this season? Where are you shopping for your favorite footwear finds? Happy Styling! 

The Stylish Five: Feel Fabulous With Forever 21’s End Of The Season Sale ($15 & Under)!

Yes, I’m still talking about the great end of the season sales online to help Style Darlings complete their summer wardrobe with this latest installment of The Stylish Five! What better place to check up on than Forever 21, where their sale items & plus size sale items are crazy affordable right now! Of course, read b/w the lines to see that these are all final sale items! These are perfect from making the transition from day-at-the-beach to poolside-under-the-stars!

For my fuller figured Style Darlings, I love the colored denim shorts with belt ($10.99) in aqua & ombré fringe slub top ($8.99) in black since they can be mixed & matched with so many other staples including a striped tank, printed wedges, dark skinny jeans, & ballet flats.  I’m always a big fan of dresses, which is why I’ve picked out the smocked midi-length tube dress ($8.99) in green.  Not only is the price unbelievable, but the length is super cute for showing off your shoes & new Labor Day pedicure.

You can never go wrong with accessories & I love the striped canvas floppy hat ($8.99), very Jennifer Lopez.  It’s essential for any day activities if you’re looking to protect your beautiful face from the sun, as well as creating that retro look with a maxi dress & stacked bangles.  Not to mention the desert heart shoppers tote ($9.99) is plenty big for your next beach excursion.  The fun print is bold for running errands with your gal pals or simply ‘toting’ around your favorite items.

Be sure to check out yesterday’s post with items $15 & Under from J.Crew! Happy Styling!

Inside A Style Blogger’s Closet: How I Styled A Summer Dress ($8.74) For Fall!

I took a recent trip to Target, just to return something & pick up some tortilla wraps, but of course I was swayed to check out the clearance section in the women’s clothing department.  Despite my protest against buying yet another dress since I clearly have no closet space for it, the $8.74 price tag made all the difference when I saw the Converse One ‘Adna’ Dress ($34.99 online).  Not to mention, that the only two dresses on the rack were in a Medium, so I didn’t think it would fit.  But then again, I did recently lose some weight, so I ducked into the fitting room to try it on. Now, this is me, at home with my new dress friend, smiling like it’s Christmas day!

I bought the wide stretch belt by Minicci ($12.99) a while back from Payless, of course with a coupon when it was on sale for $7.99. Also, the crocodile tights ($9.80) were another recent coupon purchase from Kohl’s by Simply Vera Vera Wang. I got 20% off just for being a cardholder!

The cardigan is a last season clearance purchase from Old Navy (I’m sure it was under $12).  Since the dress is pretty lightweight, the heaviness of the knit cardigan is a perfect match to add some texture & make it fall-ready! My staple sunburst necklace comes from Park Lane Jewelry, in which I received at a discounted price since I reaped the benefits of hosting a jewelry party two summers ago.

I bet you’re all wondering about the shoes.. They’re from Payless by Lela Rose.  I bought them about two winters ago, probably for around $38.00, but I’m sure that there was a BOGO 50% off deal in there somewhere!  I’m a big fan of black & cream, so this is a perfect uniform for me this fall.

I’m especially proud of the closeup on the headband since I made it myself, with a basic fabric-wrapped headband from a dollar store, as well as ribbons & lace from stores like Michael’s, Walmart, & Joann’s Fabrics & Craft Stores. I love all the different details in this look, knowing that it’s not too busy or bulky.

What do you think of my first official outfit posting?  All together it probably cost just over $100, but all of it can be mixed & matched with different outfits.  I can’t wait to see how this dress looks next summer with some wedges & an updo!  If you like looks that can be switched up b/w seasons, check out The $100 Challenge! Happy Styling!

The $100 Challenge: Mix Up Your Summer Pieces with Fall Style!

The IT color for this fall is green (YES!), which is of course, my favorite color.  My point for thing specific post is to show how you can take a summer item, like this one shoulder dress in light green from The Limited, marked down to $24.99 from $89.90!  It’s dressy enough for a summer wedding or a cocktail party, but to incorporate the pastel piece into your fall wardrobe, contrast its delicacy with darker, heavier companions.

I love textured & patterned tights, so these black lace mesh tights already add a darker element to the look & are only $5.80 @Forever 21 (also available in brown too)! The best way to work on layering is with a voluminous sweater, like the chunky knit cardigan for $12.50 (available in 7 different colors).  It’s perfect for over a plaid button-down shirt dress or even something as soft & feminine as the dress.  To keep the shape of the dress & flatter your figure, you can pair a wide belt with a flower buckle for $10.50 from Wet Seal over the cardigan.

Since there’s so much going on at the top of the look, let’s focus on the bottom with slouchy buckle strap boots for $24.20 @GOjane.  The boots are an excellent investment for the season since they can be matched with skinny jeans for a casual day as well. When you’re working with so much shape, be sure to keep an eye on proportion & these boots do just that!

The accessories helps make the look more casual & edgy, as well as sleek & playful.  The two-finger leaf ring is $6.60 @Kohl’s, complimenting the whimsical flower on the belt & print on the tights.  I went with the tri-tone hammered bangles for $7.70.  The copper & gold both look very rich against the soft hue of the dress.  Since the accessories & layering pieces are so big, I picked out really cute star stud earrings that are only $1.50 from Forever 21 that will help frame your face, especially if you’ve got your hair in an updo.

Lastly, there’s nothing like a reusable tote bag, like the owl bag for $1.50.  It’s easy to store in your car, or inside another purse if you’re preparing for a day of shopping.  Our grand total is (before taxes)…. $97.58! Happy Styling!

Quickie Darling Deal & Steal: All Dressed Up For Summer!

Rather than the usual slew of budget-friendly details, I’m gonna tell a little story.  I recently decided to treat myself to a shopping splurge, in a search for some new, cute capris to wear this summer, but of course, that didn’t happen (otherwise the name of this post would be about capris).  I ended up bringing home 5 dresses, 4 of which were from my old stomping grounds, New York & Company.  Having worked there this past holiday season, while saving up some extra cash for my recent trip to Italy, I got to see some of the best sales in action- or so I thought.

When I went into the store, during this particular trip, most items were BOGO 75% off & I had a spend $150, get $80 off coupon.  Now, I had set a spending budget for myself, so my best friend / shopping partner in crime combined our purchases to get the best deal & use the coupon & between the two of us, we did pretty darn good.  Naturally, as a way to get out of the crazy unexpected heat wave that was going on that week, later in the evening, I returned to the store with a second coupon in tow & really went at it.

Long story short, these were just 2 of the fantastic items that I bought & b/c of the super sale that was going at that weekend, I think the total of these 2 dresses alone came to about $36, which is why New York & Company is my dress destination for the summer.  The black & white pinstripe summer dress was originally marked up to $59.95.  I should also mention about the rosey pink dress, which originally went for $42.95, I also took home in black too!  I was able to get some super cozy tanks with ribbon details, as well as a few pullover tops that would work well all year long for work looks with pencil skirts or for at night with an embellished cardigan & animal ankle booties.

These will come in especially handy since I’m headed out to Southampton in July for a Writer’s Conference! These are just two of the looks that I’ll be wearing, as I’ve already been forewarned that there will be come evening events where dressier clothes are recommended.  Now.. what shoes to pack?!  Happy Styling!