Stars in Stripes {& Dots}

Aren’t you ready for a glamorous adventure? I’m always influenced by what I see happening around me, and when I spotted (no pun intended) these two ladies wearing flowing skirts in classic patterns, I imagined a surreptitious getaway inspired by the ’40s.

T&A on wall

 

T&A running for train distance

 

Volume in everything is happening right now, from skirts to pants to sleeves. You would think all that fabric would make one feel warmer, but it’s actually cooling as the fabric skims the body instead of clinging, allowing for air circulation.

 

T&Aon bench curtsey

 

If you love the idea of volume, but get overwhelmed by pattern, try pieces in solid colors or in classic patterns like Alice’s polka dot skirt. Tatiana’s skirt relies on a classic pattern of stripes, but (quite literally) turns the design on its side with stripes in a contrasting direction for a modern twist.

 

T&A on bench

 

For a bit of fun, add a modern print to a more classic one for a happy pattern mix (like Alice’s dark floral scarf here).

 

T&A pillar

 

If you love volume, by all means, carry it from head to toe. I like to keep some pieces in an ensemble more streamlined so that the voluminous piece can shine.

 

T&A walking on tracks2

 

Add a piece with volume to your wardrobe this summer and see where it takes you!

 

Unpacked:

Skirts, 5th and Hall. (By the way, if you’re in Central Florida, you should know that the previous series-of-pop-ups-that-was-5th and Hall has turned into a full-fledged shop with menswear and womenswear. Their grand opening was last Friday-I’ll share my scores from that party soon-so now you don’t have to wait to snag one-or several-of their versatile pieces!)

 

Photographed: The lovely Alice Koehler & the gorgeous Tatiana Phillips

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The Student Becomes the Master

Have you ever met that person you become a complete and utter fangirl of the first time you meet them?

That was me the first time I met Brookellyn James. She was twelve.

We met in a small town in Ohio where I was a recent college grad doing nonprofit work with middle school students, and if Taylor Swift had already penned, “Some day I’ll be livin’ in a big ‘ole city, and all you’ll ever be is-mean…” it would have rang out clearly as her theme song.

I loved seeing her find herself, her voice, her style (really just another voice, right?), and following her journey through the design world.

 

 

hat3

 

So when I saw her recent endeavor, poundsign.online, a collection of of-the-moment apparel designs dandified with cheeky hashtags, I was delighted, but not surprised.

Of course I nabbed this snapback as fast as I could decide black-with-white text or white-with black text (the Florida heat won that argument).

 

hat2

 

Feeling like a #happychewbacca? Want to warn passersby that you have #nofilter? Check out her other designs.

And because B loves me and I love you, use the promo code F#F to get 15% off your first order!

Happy #ing!

Unpacked:

White tee, Mossimo, Target.

White shorts, Elie Tahari.

Silver oxfords, Calvin Klein.

#fashion snapback hat, poundsign.online.

Never Trade a Classic (LBD)

Much has been said about that wardrobe staple to end all wardrobe staples, the Little Black Dress. I myself have preached many a sermon on their benefits, and always have at least one in my closet.

“But don’t you get bored wearing the same thing all the time?” clamors the congregation.

No, because I worship at the altar of the accessory (not as skillfully as the Great Master Iris Apfel, but with as much fervor and devotion).

We’ve all heard about the supernatural powers accessories have to transform a look, which is why we must resist the temptation to stick with “what works” lest we fail to discover some uncharted arrangements that end up revealing our original, shimmering selves.

The best thing about accessories (or excessories, as I sometimes like to call them), is that they’re available at all price points. I have an awesome cotton leopard print scarf that I purchased at the dollar store, and a huge silk scarf featuring a hand painted map of the Toronto train system that I, ahem…did not purchase at the dollar store. And of course, a range of everything in between. Discount no temple of fashion when searching for these little bits of heaven, whether it be a chichi boutique or wild street market.

If you’re looking for ways to restore your faith in the LBD this summer, consider the following for inspiration:

black dress original

My LBD in its original form, paired with simple jewelry and wedge sandals.

 

black dress with bomber sweater.jpg

I know bombers are A THING right now, but in this Florida heat, a cotton mesh one with a varsity vibe is the only one I can handle.

 

black dress with kimono belt

Love wide kimono belts but don’t have one handy? Tie a scarf around your waist. If you want bang for your buck, dark florals are a trend that will take you from summer to fall.

black dress with neckerchief

This is the summer of the neckerchief.

Which faithful article in your closet could use the transformative touch of an accessory?

Unpacked:

#1. LBD, Arloh, Hattie’s Branches.

Black & tan wedges, Michael Kors.

Tiger’s Eye earrings, Sorrelli.

Tiger’s Eye & Swarovski crystal pendant, Oreb Lram, PMoA Gift Shop.

 

#2. Sweater, J.O.A., 5th and Hall.

Shoes, Cole Haan.

Earrings, Betsey Johnson.

Mother of Pearl ring, little shop in Belgium.

 

#3. Silk scarf, Yuki Torii, purchased on consignment.

Blue Agate earrings, purchased from a friend’s closet sale.

Pale pink pumps, Circa.

 

#4. Silk square paisley scarf, similar here, Ralph Lauren.

Black pearl brooch, purchased from a friend’s closet sale.

Black pearl earrings, I don’t remember.

Sandals, Michael Kors (or try this pair).

 

Δ 1 Thing-Refine It

Do you ever just want to wear simple classics? I do after running around after a little Tasmanian Devil.

Walking in St. Pete from behind.jpg

 

Sometimes a t-shirt and cutoffs are what it takes to keep up with the other people in your life, and when that happens I like to tsuzj up the combo with a scarf or the accessory of the moment, a bandana.

Walking in St Pete on bench.jpg

 

But there are also times when you’d like a bit more refinement. In math, Delta (Δ, the fourth letter of the Greek alphabet) signifies an incremental change in a variable. Many times, that’s all it takes to create an entirely different look–one small change–and that’s what I want you to think of next time you get dressed.

To make one small change resulting in an entirely different look here, I swapped out my grey tee for a vibrant silk shell and jewelry to civilize myself a bit.

Walking in St Pete banyan tree

 

Silk is my favorite fabric for staying cool in the summer. This tank’s folds, drapes, and assymetric hemline give it something special. When looking for something to elevate an outfit, look for details like these that make a garment stand out.

Walking in St Pete behind banyan tree

 

Chokers are having a moment, but if you don’t like something literally choking you, try a banded collar like this one that sits loosely at the base of the neck.

Walking in St Pete holding C hand

 

Next time you reach for a basic t-shirt on a busy Saturday morning, consider switching it out for a more refined top to take your outfit from “boardwalk” to “bistro.”

And then go enjoy this wonderfully wild world!

Unpacked:

White Cutoff Denim Shorts, Target.

Grey V-neck Tee, J. Crew.

Bandana, super old.

Neon yellow & snakeskin sandals, LOFT.

Cobalt silk tank, Elie Tahari.

Necklace, Polk Museum of Art Gift Store.