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Splurge vs Steal: Neutral Wedding Shoes

April 10, 2015

Wedding season is upon us! It’s hard to believe it is that time of year again, but as the days get longer and the weather gets warmer those invitations are sure to start flowing in. Chances are that you’ll be invited to more than one nuptial celebration this season, and many of us will be participating as a bridesmaid at least once. As you start to mark you calendar, you’ll inevitably start to wonder things like how am I going to afford 5 outfits, what does semi-formal mean, and why did she choose that color of dress? While I’ll have to tackle the dress question another day, I’m here to tell you that nude is the way to go for shoes, and one of these versatile styles is all you need! This probably isn’t the first time you’ve heard this. Many brides ask their bridesmaids to wear nude shoes because they go with any color, and they know you’ll be able to continue to wear the shoe after. So, I just wanted to give some guidance on what shoes work for which formality and what this seasons trends are.

The Heeled Sandal: A classic. Sophisticated and understated. This minimal style has been in vogue for several seasons now with no sign of fading out and with good reason. It’s great because the barely-there straps don’t distract from the rest of your outfit and make your legs look a mile long. These are the perfect choice for any dress code from dressy-casual to white tie formal, and will continue to be a staple heel in your wardrobe long after this wedding season has passed. Make note, these are not the best choice for a beach or outdoor ceremony. The splurge here is by the one and only Manolo Blanik and is available in a 4″ or 3″ heel. The steal here is Steve Madden and looks almost identical (also comes in a 4″ heel).

The Dressy Wedge: Comfortable and casual. This is the perfect option if you’re uncomfortable in heels, or you’re attending an outdoor or beach wedding but still want added height. I love these two shoes because the neutral ankle strap makes your ankles look thinner while the color doesn’t break the line of your leg. This style fits in at a casual to dressy-casual affair, and will work with your spring/summer wardrobe all season long! The splurge is Paloma Barcelo and is a great mid-height (8.2 cm). The steal is Kenneth Cole Reaction and comes in a little taller at 4″.

The Scalloped Flat: Chic and versatile. This style is the latest twist on the classic ballet flat, and has become a favorite of bloggers and celebrities this season. They’re a perfect, comfortable option for casual to semi-formal occasions and are appropriate for all ages. Expect to see more and more options in this style as the year goes on. The splurge here is the shoe that launched the micro-trend, Chloe. The steal is from the ever sophisticated and classy, Lauren Conrad.

What style would you choose to carry you through the entire season?

-Katie

Fashion Style Boards

The Basics of Summer

April 1, 2015

Who doesn’t love a good basic? For me, they are the first thing I reach for when I open my closet doors, and the building blocks of every great outfit. It takes two key attributes to make something a basic, in my eyes, and those are utility and adaptability. And by that I mean every good basic should be able to be able to we worn several different ways and with outfits of different textures, colors and patterns.

These are five basic pieces that every woman should own for summer:

The Striped Tee  – The striped tee is such a timeless essential. I recently learned that the striped tee was first put into production for the French Navy in the 19th century because it made it easier to spot sailors who had been thrown overboard (hence the nautical association today!), and was first introduced into modern fashion by Coco Chanel in her 1917 collection after she had spotted it on sailors off the coast of France. It’s been a huge hit ever since and remains a wardrobe staple today. I love it because it mixes well with solids, print large or small, and even other stripes! it can be worn as a plain tee, a beach cover up or tied around your waist waiting to be used as a extra layer.  You can find some of my favorites here, here and here!

The White Jean – The white jean needs no introduction. It’s a summer wardrobe must have. It goes with everything: prints, stripes, brights, whites, crops and tunics. The only difficult thing about a white jean is finding the right pair. I went through so many pairs and gave up multiple times before finding the right ones. My pair is AG and you can find them here, and I also like this and this.

The Colorful Tote –  The tote is the most versatile of handbags, and you really need one for each season. In the summer, I like a colorful and textured tote for everything from storing magazines and headphones at the airport, to carrying my towel, sandals and sunscreen at the beach, to even hauling home my farmers market fruits and vegetables. The right tote looks chic in each situation, but won’t leave you hanging with a bunch of other things to carry. You can find the one above here, as well as other great options here and here.

The Summer Wedge – A wedge is so great because it does your legs all the favors of a pump without all the pain. This is why they are perfectly suited for summer when you’re more inclined to long walks in the sunshine. Mix them with jeans (from skinny to flare), culottes or palazzo pants, a dress or a skirt (maxi or mini). This pair can be found in tons of colors here, but these and these are definitely on my wishlist!

The Silk Scarf – The silk scarf is wonderful multi-tasker and a feminine classic. It can be worn around the neck on a breezy day, over the shoulders on a hot, sunny day, draped and tied over your hair to hide an untamed mane, or twisted and knotted around the waist for an interesting belt option. I like to find options in bright summer prints and geometric patterns. Find this one here, and other gems here and here.

What are summer basic would you add?

-Katie

Fashion Style Boards

Splurge vs Steal: Summer Bags

March 25, 2015

I love a luxury handbag as much as the next girl, but sometimes (well a lot of times) $100+ is just a hard sell, even to myself. And, I am really good a selling stuff to myself.

The good news is that due to a little industry called “fast fashion” you can have this season’s hottest bags for a fraction of the price. Here are some of my favorite styles for this spring and summer:

1. The Bucket Bag – this is my favorite new bag style. It’s a great break from the boxy crossbody styles that have been pervading the handbag world for the past several years. The Splurge is the Mansur Gaviel bag that launched the trend, and the incredible Steal is H&M!

2. The Tribal Clutch – I love the color and texture this bag brings to an outfit! Whether you find this style at a Sunday market in Marrakesh or at your local department store it’s a must have this year. The Splurge is Star Mela from Shopbop and the Steal is available at Nordstrom.

3. The Leather Tote – A classic. The perfect carry-all for the plane or the beach that looks polished with a silk jumpsuit or sneakers and boyfriend jeans. The Splurge is Madewell’s Transport Tote and the Steal is Street Level’s Reversible Vegan Leather Tote.

http://www.polyvore.com/splurge_vs_steal_summer_bags/set?id=153036618

-Katie

Fashion Style Boards

Rainy Day Whites & Grays

March 18, 2015

outfit1

We had more rain today in Seattle! Surprise, surprise. But the gray weather isn’t so bad. It’s great outfit inspiration! Today I wore Sam Edelman flats, Zara jeans, ASOS cocoon cardigan, BP lariat necklace, and a Joie blouse.

Shop for similar styles on this Polyvore board! http://www.polyvore.com/whites_grays/set?id=152738752

-Katie

Fashion Style Boards

5 Sandals for S/S 2015

March 14, 2015

Seattle has been so sunny, but it still hasn’t warmed up enough to wear sandals. So, I guess the next best thing is to make a board with this year’s styles that I can’t wait to wear!

1. The Simple Slide – This one carries over from last year when these were the new trend. I still love the basic look and the comfort factor of them though. Dress it up or dress it down, it always exudes an understated elegance. This pair is by Ancient Greek Sandals.

2. The Fringed Heel – Fringe on sandals has come on to the scene this year, and it’s such a fun detail! You can find this look from lots of different designers this season, but this one is by Schultz.

3. The Lace-Up Gladiator – Gladiators always go in and out of style through the years, and this year they are back in a big way. The lace up function helps make a classic feel new again. This pair is by Joie.

4. The Knee-High Gladiator – Another twist on the classic comes this year in the form of a knee-high sandal. In previous years, this sandal height was solely identified with the bohemian look, but this year they really work with all kinds of dresses and skirts. No paisley print required! These are by Stuart Weitzman.

5. The Block Heel – I am obsessed with this sandal! It’s not a new trend, but this style has really blown up this year with lots of interesting variations and options at every price. I love it because it gives you all the sexiness of a heel, but is more comfortable and stable than a slim heel. So whether you are shaking it up on the dance floor or trekking the length of Manhattan these are the heels you want on your feet. These beauties are by Loeffler Randal.

You can find links for where to buy these on my Polyvore page: http://jkatiejones.polyvore.com/

What sandals are you crushing on this season?

-Katie