STYLISH BABY BUMP

Being a new expectant mother brought on new challenges in my wardrobe as I am sure it has yours as well if you have expected or are currently. As a stylist I took this on as a styling challenge since there was no way I was going to head to the maternity department. Staying stylish while my baby bump continues to grow (not to mention my chest as well) is a must. 🙂 Not until about week 13 did I actually notice that my pants were getting tight, from there it spiraled to my dresses not zipping and my favorite pieces going on the shelf until next year. This is when I decided my new wardrobe had to began! And I do not mean buying a whole new wardrobe, I just mean adjusting the way I wear my wardrobe. So you ask what are my secrets? How am I accommodating my growing belly? Well here are my 5 tips and tricks and as I grow even bigger I am sure I will have even more to share!

Tips & Tricks:

1. Get BRA fitting: Ladies if you think you are going to stay the same size while your baby bump is growing you are crazy. Trust me are boobs is one of the first things to start growing and trust me there is nothing worse than in ill fitting bra. Plus, if you want to keep your boobs perky wearing the right size bra is truly important. 🙂 I would recommend just buying one nude and one black. If your boobs grow out of that size then do the same thing and get the next size up that you need. DO NOT buy a bra to large thinking you will grow into it. Be the size you are TODAY! (Also, put all the bras the currently do not fit in your wardrobe into a bag and store in your closet, you do not need to be bothered with those at the moment.) Embrace your new found curves!

Example: When you get the appropriate bra size you boobs look even better! 🙂 I was 4 months pregnant here!

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2. Buy for TODAY: I think many make this mistake. Buying to large to either try and hide the baby bump or thinking buy larger so you will grow into it later is exactly what you do not want to do. Instead you should be embracing your beautiful miracle at the stage you are currently at and buying for your current size. Trying to hide it only makes you look larger and over weight instead of pregnant! 🙂

This is what happens when you buy clothes trying to cover your bump! (Not styled right)

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This is how stylish you can look when you buy the right size! (Styled right)

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3. STRETCHY fabric is your new best friend: When things started to fit tight I went through my wardrobe put all my stretchy items towards the front of my closet. Leggings, skirts and dresses that are stretchy are now my current favorite pieces in my wardrobe. I also then put all my tops that were looser to the front as well. That way I wouldn’t waste time trying things on I knew were to small for the current moment.

5 months pregnant here! Amazing what stretchy skirts can do! Both these items were already currently in my closet.

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4. Belly Band: These belly bands were one of my first purchases I made. I knew that I loved all my jeans and buying a bunch of maternity jeans just did not seem appealing. What is great about these belly bands is that they allow for your growing belly all through the pregnancy. They help hold your jeans up and save you a ton of money on buying new jeans. You can find these at target only $16, I bought them in every color!

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5. Buy a few pieces through each stage: Of course the inevitable will happen and you will need to buy a few things for your growing belly so make sure as you go shopping that these items are comfortable, not too tight and again are stretchy fabric. That way even if you grow a little you will not have grown out of it so fast. 🙂 Try to intermix these items with things you are still fitting in your current wardrobe.

Only dress I have bought since becoming pregnant! And I love it, not only does it fit my style it shows off my cute baby bump and still room to grow in it!

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Until next time stay styled right! xoxo FSR

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How to DRESS without STRESS…

I am sure at one point or another you have been running late for work and flipping through a ton of outfits feeling nothing looks good so then you always go back to the few pieces you always wear. And I am sure you have been asked out on a date and the first thing that runs through your mind is “what am I going to wear”. It was only last weekend that I was getting ready for a birthday dinner that I began to have the same issue. Yes even personal stylists can have fashion crisis’s! lol (It was then that I realized I was due for another closet clean out).  So now the question is how to avoid getting dressed under stress. Being stressed for time and trying to figure out what to wear is the worst. You are frantically trying to put something together but nothing is working so you end up with some mediocre outfit and of course during the day you probably run into your ex or are asked to give a presentation at work at even better asked out on a last minute lunch date. And now all you can think about is how you wish you had something else on. Well lucky for you I have some helpful steps so you too can learn to get dressed without stress!!

STEP 1: Get rid of the dead weight…

  • Make 3 piles: Give away, fix and find a match.
  • I know many of us do not like to let certain items of clothing go thinking to ourselves “one day I will wear that” or “I do not know what to wear with it but I love it”. First of all we all know the items we say “we will wear one day” never get worn so in that case put that in the give away pile.
  • If you just can’t seem to part with a few of the pieces you think you “will wear one day” start doing what I like to call the “REVERSE HANG”. What that means is every time you wear something and put it back in your closet hang it facing the opposite way. Then every six months look at all the items still facing the normal way and those are the items you really need to put in the give away pile.
  • Look at your “find a match” pile and create a list of items you need in order to complete those pieces to make an outfit.
  • Now that you have completed this step you should already feel a lot lighter. 🙂

STEP 2: Go shopping…

  • Pick out only the pieces that you put on your list. This is all you need for now.
  • I also have a package for this type of shopping if you are in need of some help. 🙂

STEP 3: Pick out your outfit the night before…

  • Do you ever remember doing this as a child the night before the first day of school? I definitely remember how excited I was to wear that outfit the next day and how all I had to do was get ready and put it on. There was no changing 5 or more times and staring at my closet. Thus, this is exactly what you should be doing every night before going to bed… trust me it works!!!
  • If you have 2 places to go that day, say work and a girls night out well then lay both outfits out. This will save you so much time in the long run and really help you avoid getting dressed under stress.

Ok, see that wasn’t so hard. Three steps and your now getting dressed with ease! Until next time stay styled right my fabulous fashionistas!! xoxo FSR

AZTEC from runway to the streets!

A MEXICAN THROW BLANKET GONE RUNWAY!!!!

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I do not think there is anything that is beyond the human imagination that cannot be turned into a fashion trend; and the Aztec pattern is a perfect example of that. It started to show up in many designer’s collections last fall and has carried over into this spring and summer. Now like I have always said there is always a way to be styled right, which is what I want all my fashionistas to be able to achieve daily! You can pretty much find Aztec in every piece of clothing from shirts, pants, shorts and even headbands and shoes. This pattern has even extended to men’s clothing, cell phone covers and latest finger nails! This is definitely no shortage of this Aztec pattern. I would recommend deciding on which piece of your outfit is going to be Aztec and let everything else compliment it. I would start with the Aztec piece and build around it. The golden rule is to not over do it! Clothing with this pattern can be found at Nordstrom, Urban Outfitters, Free People, Zara, H&M and Express (just to name a few).

Here are a few examples of ways you can wear the Aztec pattern:

I would recommend wearing these shorts with a casual coral or orange top with a pair of toms. If you wanted to walk on the wild side try pairing these with a pair of leggings and booties with a white top and leather jacket.

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Another great way to wear this trend is a aztec pattern dress!

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Surprisingly this pattern can even be dressed up for a night out. Add some sequins and BAM you are glamourous!

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Even men can be dressed in Aztec, well that is underneath! I looked for men’s clothing with the Aztec pattern but was disappointed in what I saw. So men lets just keep this trend to your underwear! 🙂

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A very easy way to where this trend is to through on a sweater or top with this pattern and pair it with a pair of leggings and lace up boots! This would be the boho chic style! 🙂

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My favorite way to where this trend is with a blazer thrown over the top! You could pair this either with a pair of mint green shorts(which is also a big trend) or even a great pair of skinny jeans and a pair of heels!

ImageOk now that I have shown you how to wear this trend get to it and try it out for yourself! Always stay styled right!! xoxo FSR

Buy Now…Wear Now

On average a person only wears 25% of their wardrobe. Now there are many reasons for this and let me tell you not having enough clothes is never the case! [LOL] Some causes may be that they bought items hoping they would eventually fit into it, it was such a bargain they could not pass it up, or it was a had to have item at the time but went home and quickly realized nothing in their closet went with it. Now these are all big no no’s when you go shopping however, they are not what I am going to focus on for today. What I want to talk about is something much bigger and not really an issue but more of a styling concept that one must learn. I call it “Buy Now…Wear Now”.  It is a great styling tool to learn and use consistently as it will help you grow your wardrobe as well as wear a lot more pieces through out the year.

Now most of you know that in the fashion world there are only two seasons. Spring and Fall; there is no Summer and Winter like the weather seasons. Thus, meaning that the concept of buying for certain seasons is totally backwards. If you have not already noticed we are still in August and Spring Collections are all on sale while Fall Collections are coming in at rapid speed! Fall is considered to be from July to December and Spring is January to June. Therefore, you really have to be aware of what you are buying, when to buy certain pieces and most importantly how to get the most wear out of each piece. This concept is especially important when you are dropping a large amount of money on one piece. I do condone this type of shopping 100%, I believe quantity over quality but that is a whole other topic. 🙂 Now, because we are currently in Fall it seems most appropriate to teach you how to wear the trends of this season while we are still seeing the sun blazing outside. Not to mention that Fall is my favorite season, born and raised in the Northwest my have something to do with my favorites. I absolutely love boots, tweed coats, bulky sweaters, sequin dresses, dark color, etc… the list could go on forever.

The two trends that I am really loving are FUR and LEATHER! Both of these trends can totally be worn now for Summer and will transition perfectly into Fall. Now I know you must be thinking, “are you crazy it is like 80 degrees outside how do you expect me to wear fur and moreover leather”! Well, let me tell you that styled with the right pieces its very doable. I do not know about you but I love instant gratification and the thought of buying a fabulous $1,500 fur jacket or vest and having it tucked away in my closet until the temperature drops to at least 40 degrees is just unacceptable. If fur is your trend of choice this season, I would style it with a great high waisted short, a light weight blouse, topped off with your fabulous new FUR jacket/vest and paired with chunky wedges! Now in the evening you could switch it up with a skinny jean, tank top and the vest/jacket. Moreover, when it gets cold you can also put a long top underneath the vest. And the jacket of course will look great over anything especially a sequin dress!

Transition from Summer to Winter in a FUR VEST!

Always glamourous in FUR!

If you are dieing to wear your leather jacket, shorts or pants here are a few ideas of how to style them. Leather jacket is pretty simple you can really style it over anything and it will look good. A summer dress, tank and shorts, maxi dress, top and jeans, etc. Leather shorts are easy as well your legs are already exposed so all you need to think about is what you will wear up top. I would suggest something light weight; t-shirt, blouse, tank, or maybe even that fur vest. Pair it with wedges or caged sandals and you are ready! Now if leather pants are your trend of choice, I would suggest only wearing these late in the evening as leather does not breath. Also, again I would wear something light weight so that you stay as cool as you can. In the winter, when the weather actually cools off I would pair both the leather pants and shorts with bulky sweaters and booties. The shorts I would also wear a textured tight underneath, that way you stay warm and look chic doing it. What is really neat about this seasons leather is that is washed leather which makes it more casual and to me seems to be a better look for Summer.

Transition from Summer to Winter in Leather pants!

LEATHER JACKET “SUMMER LOOKS”

LEATHER JACKET “FALL/WINTER LOOK”

Transition from Summer to Winter in Leather shorts!

Ok, so now that you know how to wear two of the best trends for Summer and Fall… get to shopping! And do not be afraid to splurge, these two trends always seem to come and go through different years they are definitely pieces that you just never get rid of! And I must say vintage fur is the best!

Here are a few of my favorite leather and fur pieces in retail stores now…

Kenna Leather Pants (Nordstrom)

Balmain Leather Jacket (Nordstrom)

Another Look... Balmain Leather Jacket

Vince Fur Vest (Nordstrom)

3.1 Phillip Lim Leather Skirt (Nordstrom)

Burberry Porseum Leopard Fur Jacket (Nordstrom)

Suede is taking over the world!!

Well if you haven’t already noticed, than you must be seriously blind. 🙂 Anyone that walks into a retail store will see the huge increase in everything from men’s loafers to women’s wedges consisting of SUEDE! Almost every style of shoe you could imagine is now being produced in suede the trend is catching on more and more. I have seen strappy heels, wedges, pumps, loafers, ballerina flats and sandals all made in suede. Anywhere from the whole shoe to a detailed accent and let me tell you I am totally OBSESSED! Every time I go to pick out a shoe 9 times out of 10 there is suede on them. Additionally, this past Friday one of my clients asked me to bring her heel options for two different dresses that she could go from day to evening in by using the same heel. I realised quickly as I started to pull the heels out of the boxes and explain why I felt each one could work a theme occurred. They were almost all done in suede. Suede is a great alternative to a classic leather or even a patent leather, I consider it to be the most versatile of fabrics. It is the perfect in-between shoe you can really dress it up or dress it down. It will really depend on how you style it by the accessories you wear and the outfit it is being paired with. The options are really endless with this fabric choice however my favorite ways to pair suede is with anything tweed or a light weight silk garment (either a blouse or dress). Suede has even migrated onto headbands, jackets, handbags and hats. FYI, you can not beat a suede handbag it has so much class and elegance a piece like this will take you through many seasons to come. However, if you are going to purchase your first addition to your wardrobe in suede I would stick to a shoe and more over probably a pump or wedge! And if you are shopping with your man you might as well encourage him to pick up a pair of suede loafers as they are a great shoe he can wear to the office as well as on a date.

THREE very important things to remember when wearing suede…

#1: CARE FOR YOUR SUEDE! You must take great care when wearing suede especially on your feet. The first thing you should do is brush them and then spray them with water repellent. I would continue this process every few weeks. There is also suede cleaner if you do get something on them. A suede shoe uncared for will be an unhappy and furthermore an ugly shoe

#2: SUEDE HAS NO LIMITS! Suede can be funky or classy, whichever you prefer just own the look. 🙂 As you will see below the options with suede are endless and you can chose to be funky or classic which ever fits your personal style. Again, its all how you style this trend, own it in your new suede shoes!! 🙂

#3: UGGS ARE NOT A SUEDE TREND!! Do not go buy a pair of Uggs and think you are following the newest hottest trend!

What I really love is all the fall color shades in suede; burgundy, green, navy blue, gray and brown. Many designers have taken a liking to this trend, such as Gucci, Miu Miu, Prada, Jeffery Campbell, Vince Camuto, Jimmy Choo, Steve Madden and the list goes on. Here are a few of my favorite suede choices:

Stylish at any size!

Have you ever thought it would be so much easier to just be a man? I have when it comes to SHOPPING I would much rather shop for my boyfriend than myself. Anything from H&M to Gucci looks good on him and for the most part no tailoring needed. And even the H&M merchandise looks expensive for what it is, he is able to easily find his size with such ease. All it really takes for a man to look put together on a casual day is a nice pair of jeans, crisp t-shirt and a nice fitted blazer accompanied by loafers, sneaks etc. The average American man is a size 44 jacket and weighs around 189 pounds so for most it is easy to shop at retail stores and have the ability to wear any brand.

However, the fashion world for women is the exact opposite. Designers seem to think that all American women are between the sizes of 0 and 10, however this is obviously a big misconception which you can tell just by stepping foot into a mall. The average American woman is a size 14 weighing about 162 pounds. Now even though I am no size 14, having broad shoulders and a tiny waist makes it no easier for me to shop. I have tried over and over again to wear Smythe blazers (carried in my department via C) but no such luck, my shoulders are just to broad and they already run small as it is. I work with many women ranging from all sizes and my job is to make them look their best no matter what size they are. I keep the motto that “size is just a number” its how it looks is important. Half the time I will not even ask a woman what her size is because not only do most brands fit differently it really depends on the cut of each individual piece. And a lot of women will say what size they want to be and not what they really are. For many women they look at magazines and aspire to be that model on the cover, however even the model isn’t that size. Society unfortunately has put a taboo on being anything larger than a size 10 and is due in part to designers not designing for them. This only creates more “fashion crimes” seen daily by millions of woman (ahhhhhh). Unfortunately, this happens because so many brands do not accommodate the average American woman, most are forced to wear the not so cute designs or trying to squeeze into the shirt that does not come in their size. Hence, is why we continue to see women that yearn to be in fashion or stylish feeling they must where the latest designs, even if it means squeezing into a garment that truly does not fit, they try the “make it work” (what we always hear on project runway), however in this case it is better to not try to “make it work”. Wearing something that is too tight makes a person actually look bigger than they really are just the same as wearing something way to large by trying to cover up. The best way to look your slimmest is to wear the CORRECT size. Most designers are under the impression that extra small through medium is the only size that should be seen wearing their designs. But all hope is not lost there are a few designers that have thrown that idea out the window and are catering to women from a size 00 to 16. This list includes what I consider to be the best designers and brands when it comes to still wanting to be stylish at a larger (or rather average) size! 🙂

Couture Designers: Valentino, Armani, Michael Kors, Carmen Marc Valvo, Ralph Lauren, Donna Karen (runs big), Burberry

Other Labels: Diane Von Frustenburg, Ellie Tahari, Tadashi, Juicy Couture, DKNYC, Eileen Fisher, AK Ann Klein, Calvin Klein, Kenneth Cole, Jones New York, Karen Kane

So… if you were that woman feeling down on herself or wishing to be a size 2 so you could wear that rocking dress or those amazing jeans, you can worry no more!! If you shop the brands I have listed above you will be sure to not only feel stylish but look it as well. There is nothing worse than trying to wear a designer label to only have it be ill fitting. You are the average American woman size do not be ashamed be PROUD, be BEAUTIFUL, be STYLISH!!

Belt or not to belt?

Have you ever looked in the mirror after putting your outfit on and thought “ITS MISSING SOMETHING”! So first you try putting on a necklace but yet its still missing something, then you try changing your shoes yet again its still missing something. You even try changing the earrings or maybe changing your hair style yet only to be disappointed and completely puzzled by what it is your are missing!! Drum roll please……..

[TAKE A BREATH]

Your outfit 9 out of 10 times is missing a BELT! Yes, you heard me a belt. Let me tell you that adding a belt to your outfit will make it look more put together and chic (and thinner if styled correctly). You can turn a basic t-shirt and sweater combo into something chic and unique. I cannot even to begin to count how many times I walk into a dressing room to look at my clients outfit and think oh “this is will be perfect all it needs is a belt”. I definitely frequent the accessories department downstairs always on the hunt for the perfect belt to complete my clients outfit. Usually, its with a dress that needs to be broken in half to give some shape to the garment and/or accentuate my clients figure. Rule of thumb when choosing what belt is best for your figure. If you have a flat stomach a skinny belt is great because it will draw attention to that area. If you are full-figured try a corset or double-buckle belt giving you that great hourglass shape. Now, it is important to wear the right belt for the outfit you cannot just throw on any old belt and expect it to work its magic to the outfit. The belt must be chosen carefully all depending on a few factors; your body type, what you want to accentuate, whether the belt will be the focus or the complimentary piece. Also when choosing a belt you will want to pay attention to the texture, color and thickness of the belt. (take notice as well that with these outfits styled with a belt they do not much jewelry)

Wendy Williams and Michelle Obama with fuller figures look great with a thick belt!

Most likely if you are going to wear a belt to cinch a sweater together a thin belt will be best. One of my favorite looks is wearing a crisp white button up paired with a black sweater accompanied by a red thin patten leather belt to complete the look. Additionally, on the bottom I would wear skinny black pants and a great classic leather pump. Reminds me of Audrey Hepburn! If you are going to try this look I would suggest not wearing a patent leather shoe, it becomes to matchy matchy with the patent leather belt.

Classic look, effortlessly chic.

THIN BELT for boyfriend style cardigan

Another outfit that usually calls for a belt is your favorite dress that has no shape. Try belting it you might be pleaseantly surprised. This will also most likely call for a thin belt. If you are going to use a thick belt make sure it is elastic so it will stay around your waist and define shape.

Another great way to add a little sass to your outfit is to add a metallic belt. This will dress up any casual dress, skirt, jacket or sweater.

Kate Bosworth in summer dress looking chic with metallic belt.

STYLE CRIME #2 Wearing a skirt with elastic band and not belting it!! (HORRIBLE) This is not a matter of question you must belt a skirt like this. And usually this type of skirt calls for an outlandish statement belt. Yes, just like statement jewelry you can make your belt your statement piece for that outfit (same rules apply here, so make sure your outfit is kept simple to let the belt shine and not have to compete with the rest of the outfit).

What do you think? BELT OR NOT TO BELT?