September 29, 2011

20 Fall Essentials #7: Capes

It’s been getting quite chilly outside lately which I’m actually really excited about for once, mostly due to me loving everything that Fall has to offer (except rain). In particular, I've already started to layer my clothes and I can't wait for those days where my outerwear piece does all the talking when it comes to how effortlessly-chic my outfit looks. A simple raincoat, parka, or leather jacket are a few ways to get you through the cool months, but a bold cape or poncho is the way to go right now!

I love the fact that capes are so incredibly easy to put on: two little side peep-holes are made for your arms to easily slide through, a larger hole on the top for your head, and the easiest of them all - those cute and little capelets that simply drape atop your shoulders. This great piece allows you to have a lot of movement, which is an essential factor during the cooler months, considering the amount of layering we do! Running errands wearing a big heavy coat or even a leather jacket can be quite tough due to their stiffness and bulkiness that disables us from moving around fast. 

Since this item wants to be the focus of your look, it can be quite difficult to style it at times without taking attention away from it. Never fear though - superheroes do it everyday and Leighton Meester (Blair Waldorf) on Gossip Girl pulls her capes, ponchos, and little capelets off in the most stylish way - so you can, too! Don’t worry, I won’t have you looking like Superwoman after you’re doing reading this (although, who wouldn’t want to look like a Superhero...I wouldn’t mind)

Oftentimes, ponchos and capes can be seen as quirky and odd, since they have no actual sleeve for your arm - but that’s the best part here! Putting the ease of wear aside, the piece comes in so many styles, colors, and fabrics, that you can seriously make a major positive statement about yourself - in terms of your style and confidence - if you select the right one. You definitely do not have to stick to a traditional neutral-hued shade - go for bold prints such as plaid/tartan, gingham, and tweed, as well as looking for bright colors like corals, reds, greens, and plums. 

The simplest version which was made famous my Mexicans in old films has a tiny bit more than a simple blanket, with just a hole in it to pop your head out of! This also comes in the form of a cape or a chic little shrug-style that drapes over your shoulders, as seen on Leighton above atop her lace dress as well as with her matching plaid skirt below. 

Just by observing the stylish ladies in their looks above, can you see how easy it is to simply just throw a cape on and go? They really are one of those pieces you'll want to have in your closet due to their ease and versatility. Whether you decide to pair it with your most comfortable pair of leggings or jeans, your new brightly-hued fitted skirt, or even a bodycon cocktail dress, the possibilities are endless - just keep in mind these hot tips:
  1. Do not over style yourself when it comes to accessories, including shoes, your handbag, and jewelry, since the cape is such a bold piece! 
  2. Pair your chosen cape/capelet/poncho with a fitted bottom since the piece already has a lot of movement, drape, and flow to it - no need to add more bulk!
  3. As I previously mentioned - you definitely don't have to stick to your everyday go-to shade of black or nude. Look for bright colors and trendy patterns like plaid/tartan and tweed!
  4. If a sleek cape with no detailing is a bit too safe for you, add your own embellishments with scarves, brooches, or belts, should you not find a cape that already has its own detailing.
Now that you are all set in terms of knowing about the trend, here are a few stylish ways to wear your cape, capelet, or poncho starting... now! If you already have a piece, share how you style it below in the comments! Is there one you've been eyeing somewhere but you couldn't figure out how to wear it? I tried a very casual semi-acidwash piece at Diesel and fell in love - might have to grab it soon!
30-Day Fall Essentials #7: Capes

September 26, 2011

a light in fashion

Styling people, being involved in fashion, or working in any industry that involves people making important decisions in front of you can be quite rewarding at times, and I don't mean in the $$$ sense. Putting all forms of money you are being rewarded aside, take into consideration how you make someone feel at the end of their purchase and/or visit instead. Do you ever think about this? It can easily slide past your mind upon helping someone find - let's consider retail and styling for now - their perfect outfit or garment to add to their closet. At times, the customer may be in a hurry, isn't open to showing or telling how they feel, they really don't feel like talking, but would rather just pick, choose and buy, or you have those difficult clients who can't decide between two similar shades of pink. In the end though, despite the reason, you have to try to put yourself in their shoes, as an alternative to simply showing your fashion knowledge and/or putting your two cents in, in order to help them reach a decision.

I've thought about this a lot lately considering a few incidents that happened to me at work this past week. I can truthfully say that my favorite people to style and help in making a decision are those who haven't found their sense of style, or even self, yet, as well as those who are extremely picky, but don't exactly know what does and doesn't look good on them. I may have chosen two very difficult types of customers, but to me, I find both to be the most exciting. I love building a long relationship with someone in a short amount time, from the moment they walk into the store, to the time they have already tried on 15+ pieces thirty minutes in, all the way to the moment they have the biggest smile on their face upon making their purchase. The most important factor to not only consider but act upon during this whole process is empathy.

The reason why I feel this is so crucial in fashion (and in general, really) is because of the abundant amount of people there are out there that constantly compare themselves to others, including classmates, celebrities, models, or even, sadly, family members. Whether you're a size 0 or 12, you're bound to feel discouraged at least once if not several times upon shopping for that something special to add to your closet. I see it almost everyday and I try do whatever I can to help that particular person step out of their negative zone and into something better, more positive, and hopeful. Even if it doesn't work for everyone, I at least know that I learned something new about someone and can apply it to the next person who has a similar story, as well as hoping that the person was at least there to acknowledge what I tried to help them with.

At least once a day, I have someone telling me something along the lines of 'you have a great body, you probably look good in everything in this store!' Quite the contrary, actually... don't be so quick to judge just by the way someone looks - seriously. I know it's much easier said than done, but you have to try. Just because my body looks the way it does, that does not mean every piece of clothing is going to look absolutely fantastic on me. Designers create pieces in various cuts, shapes, and silhouettes for a reason - every person has a different cut, shape, and silhouette to them. Putting two girls who have the same size next to each other in the exact same outfit does not ensure them both looking the same and equally as good. One may suit a specific piece better than the other, and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that. I feel that's the beauty of fashion - you find out what cuts, lines, silhouettes, shapes, colors, and patterns suit you. Really, nobody said you have to look like the girl next to you - you actually shouldn't.

These are tips that I always keep in mind, especially upon coming into contact with those girls who feel so down on themselves and treat their bodies a bit too harshly when shopping. Earlier last week, a twelve year old girl was shopping for a dress at my work at Betsey Johnson to wear to an upcoming friend's party. Just by observing the items she was eyeing, I immediately realized that she wanted something short, tight, and a bit too mature for her age, and it was most likely due to her seeing garments like these on young celebrities and/or girls at her school. Instead of going along with what she [thought she] wanted, I gave her a bit of insight on what is more appropriate for her age, while still keeping in mind the fact that she wanted to look a bit more like a lady than a little girl, which is absolutely fine (and pretty adorable)! After experimenting with a few pieces that she initially wanted - and I knew weren't suitable - she ended up falling in love with a strapless, bright, floral dress that I picked out last. Sure it wasn't short, tight, or bedazzled, but after giving her those options to try on, and slipping in that last piece that had a beautiful drape, color, and shape, she realized that this kind of garment is what suits her best right now. She loved the option of having the dress strapless (since it came with detachable straps), so she has that 'grown-up' sense in her look one day and a youthful, playful look the next. It was so rewarding to see her twirl around and light up wearing a piece that she never thought of wanting to buy. Her mom was incredibly thrilled and kept repeating "It's your first strapless dress - you're growing up so fast!", and I feel that is what, as a stylist, makes what you do feel so satisfying.

Then, just a couple of days ago, was probably the most gratifying moment of me styling someone [since I've taken on the roll professionally not too long ago]. A sixteen-year-old girl comes in to Betsey with her mom looking for her first homecoming dress. Instead of the excited look that most girls have upon walking into a Betsey store - especially when shopping for homecoming - she did not seem eager to shop whatsoever and felt very discouraged upon trying on a few dresses. After trying on your typical jewel-embellished, satin-finished, tulle, lace, and silk evening dresses, she felt so dissatisfied and wanted to leave the store with no hope of finding a dress. I couldn't let that happen though - I was seriously more determined than I ever was before to help someone find a dress they feel incredible in. After explaining to her the idea that you simply have to experiment with styles you wouldn't normally pick out for yourself, I helped her choose a little black rayon dress that I knew would be perfect for her. Taken up a notch with bell sleeves, a crossover neck, and a decorative back bow, she tried it on and looked so beautiful, but you could still see a slightly worried and hesitant look on her face. I asked her why, and she said she was afraid she would still look different and not as good as the other girls at her school - you know, those girls that brag about their skinny bodies (she's a beautiful 10). That's when I immediately let her know that yes, she will look different, but in her own unique way, standing out from everyone else (really, most girls tend to all buy the same dresses sometimes anyways).

Not everyone has to have that standard fairytale-like dress with sequins, shimmer, frills, and shine - they do say that a LBD should belong in every girl's closet, after-all! She then picked out a pair of hot fuschia sparkly heels to complete her look, told me how she was going to style her hair and make-up, and it was as if a new girl had just blossomed in a span of thirty minutes. With more words of motivation and encouragement (and letting her know that she can go brag to everyone that she has a Betsey Johnson dress that she can literally keep and wear forever since it's such a classic piece), she and her mom thanked me over and over and the girl left the store feeling and looking like a new person. I was overjoyed and I'm actually so happy there are girls like her out there who don't take things for granted -  all they need is a little boost of confidence, some motivation, and words of encouragement to let them know that it honestly doesn't and never will matter what size you are or if your dress is poofy and adorned with glitter/sequins or not. Her mom even wrote a personal letter to the Betsey Johnson headquarters, addressing me, and needless to say I was in tears and just overjoyed about how happy I made someone. It's unbelievable how a small action can have such a massive impact on someone's life. Fashion shouldn't be discouraging - we played dress up when we were little for a reason: it's all about experimenting in order to find out what makes you feel good and what looks best on you. At the end of the day, everyone really is their own version of a princess living their own special fairytale.

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September 23, 2011

20 Fall Essentials #6: Velvet

Hello! I have never been this busy in my entire life, and although it can be the best thing in the world at times, it’s also very exhausting and it’s clearly left me not posting for quite some time. Excuses aside though, I am trying my best to get back to updating, so stick around please! Today, I’m picking up right where I left off with another 30-Day Fall Essential item: Velvet. 

Velvet is one of the many classic fabrics that can instantly give off an elegant look and dress up even the simplest of outfits. It’s also quite the tricky fabric to wear, considering the quality of velvet pieces out there - you have to be very careful upon choosing your garment or accessory, as the wrong one can cheapen your look which is never a good thing! If you’re around my age, you probably remember velvet way back when our holiday dresses had velvet touches, or even worse, the entire dress was velvet with a giant bow sash around the waist - ew! Nowadays, thankfully, we see velvet in chic, sophisticated, and ‘grown-up’ styles - read on to discover the many stylish ways to include this trend in your fall wardrobe today.

Designers like Miu Miu, Betsey Johnson, and Erdem have come down with a serious velvet fever, and I can totally see why. I honestly never thought I would like the fabric as much as I do now, but it’s hard not to with all the velvet we recently got in at Betsey Johnson! From blazers and cardigans to sexy shoes and ladylike handbags, all the way to the ultimate velvet sheath dress that will take you from work to play, here are four simple tips and tricks for wearing velvet: 
  1. Sure, velvet is an expensive looking fabric and it can give off that evening look; however, try to wear it in an everyday attire to easily add a glam touch to your look - you know I love instant spice!
  2. Velvet works well with classic wardrobe staples that you probably already have! The best way to wear anything that you aren’t that familiar (or comfortable) with is to pair it with non-trendy items in your closet like tights, basic denim and your ‘go-to’ top.
  3. Black is a safe color for most people upon trying out a new trend. This time around, you want to wear velvet in bold, rich, jewel-toned hues. I’ve already seen a wide range of emerald greens, eggplant purples, royal blues, and rich burgundies - these make the greatest impact and will definitely have you standing out!
  4. To balance out the density of velvet, pair your chosen piece with more delicate fabrics like satin, silk, and lace - ultimate elegance with a side of seduction.
Fall in love with velvet even more and get inspired with these looks I've created below!
30-Day Fall Essential #6: Velvet

30-Day Fall Essential #6: Velvet by danah featuring wedge boots

30-Day Fall Essentials #6: Velvet

30-Day Fall Essentials #6: Velvet by danah featuring tote handbags

Hopefully these tips and looks gave you a better idea on how to wear velvet this fall! It doesn't have to look old - as in, when you wore those holiday dresses at age 5 or the unflattering velvet dresses your lovely grannie wears - experiment until you discover what looks and feels best on you!

The rest of my day includes prepping for the All Access Fashion Show tomorrow (I can't wait!!), doing homework since it seems to keep piling on, and hopefully relaxing and sleeping early for once!

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September 19, 2011

All Access Fashion Show!

This weekend marks the third annual All Access Fashion Show at Tyson's Galleria. The signature three-day fashion and trend event is designed to allow guests to witness the energy and creativity of the international collections at Tyson's Galleria, shop the best of the Fall/Winter 2011/2012 season, meet style icons and experience the excitement usually reserved for fashion insiders during international fashion weeks.

Join us on Saturday, September 24th to experience the trends with a full day of events including trunk shows, designer and celebrity appearances, branded lounged and couture experiences. In store experiences from Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, Karen Millen, BCBG MaxAzria, Elie Tahari, Tory Burch, Stuart Weitzman, Nicole Miller, Betsey Johnson, and much more. A portion of sales at participating retailers will benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Designer Runway Shows and Presentations:
  • 9:00am: Neiman Marcus Children’s Collections Show
  • 12:00pm: Anne Fontaine
  • 1:00pm: Nicole Miller
  • 2:00pm: 
    • 7 For All Mankind
    • Vineyard Vines
    • Anthropologie
  • 3:00pm: Elie Tahari
  • 4:00pm:  Tory Burch
  • 5:00pm: Karen Millen
  • 6:00pm: 
    • Millers Furs
    • Sarar
  • 7:00pm: Ermenegildo Zegna Menswear Collections Show
  • 8:00pm: Betsey Johnson (visit me and the girls!)
After the Betsey Johnson show, stop by the store for our amazing after party to shop and party after store hours! 

  • We will be raffling off amazing prizes during our after party:
    • Shop any time throughout the entire day and receive a raffle ticket for each item purchased of any amount!
    • Attend the show and after party
    • Raffle tickets will be drawn and prizes awarded at the after party
    • You must be present to win
  • Prizes include:
    • Betsey Johnson perfume and lotion
    • Betsey Johnson PJ's
    • Betsey Johnson Liberty tee shirts
    • Betsey Johnson 'Screaming Betsey' limited edition tote bags
    • One of a kind Betsey Johnson framed artwork previously hanging in the store 
    • Biggest prize of all: A 2011 show tee shirt SIGNED BY BETSEY herself at the 2011 NYC show!
  • Mini Hair Makeovers:
    • The wonderful ladies at W Salon will be providing guests with feather hair extensions! These are a super hot trend right now - get pampered while you party - we're so excited!
I'm soooo excited for the event! Me and ladies at Betsey Johnson have been working super hard on prepping the show and after-party for you all - you don't want to miss out! 

For more information on the event itself, visit All Access Fashion and/or follow their Twitter! See you Saturday!

September 13, 2011

Betsey Johnson T & A Bombshell Babes

Courtesy of Betsey Johnson's amazing Spring 2012 show yesterday, I was heavily inspired to do a 'bombshell'-themed post - so keep your eyes open for that! I still need to get back into the groove of my blog's schedule, since Fashion Week makes me stumble all over the place! In the mean time, in-case you missed the livestream, I've posted my favorite looks below. It was stated on someone's Twitter (I forgot who) that at least 85% of what you see on the runway will be available in stores - in January! If that's true, I'm seriously so excited because I'm obsessed with this collection - it was so unique and actually quite different from what Betsey normally does; but you can obviously still see her flair throughout the entire show.

Her inspirations included her daughter Lulu (who modeled in the show!) and Nicki Minaj - she was pretty much obsessed with Nicki that entire day asking (during the backstage pre-show interviews) if anyone has seen her and how amazing she is and such - kind of ridiculously adorable. I mean... look at them together:

The show included gorgeous bombshell looking models with side-swept golden wavy locks and hot fuschia glossy lips. For Spring, we're looking at a lot T&A - as her invitation hinted at us - played up in a glamorous, sexy-sophisticated manner. We saw tons of backless dresses, micro-mini's, flowy dresses, pretty floral pastels meshed with technicolored splatters, sequins and glitter, and tons of sheer and lace fabrics - all absolutely perfect for the spring. Share your favorite pieces from the show, and when they hit stores, I'll let you know!

If this show doesn't bring out your inner bombshell, I'm not sure what else can or will! The models looked so confident, fierce, and pretty much as if they were ready to take over whatever mission they had in their hands. Victoria's Secret does it with their Angels, and now Betsey showcased her version of a bombshell - what's yours?! Share your thoughts, reactions, and favorite pieces from the show and tell me what your version of a bombshell is in the comments below! 

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September 12, 2011

Betsey Johnson Show Diary

Oh my goodness! I have such a busy day ahead of me - last night, I spent roughly 7-8 hours working on a piece for my Design class, to - get ready for a blonde moment - realize that I have a THREE hour break today between classes to finish my piece. I woke up super early today hoping to finish, but now I'm (obviously) going to finish it up in a bit... I mean thank goodness but I feel so silly for staying up until 3am rushing through it! Oh well - I finished most of it, leaving me with not much else to do, which is good since the rest of my day is super booked.

I am seriously so anxious and excited for the Betsey Johnson show tonight at 6pm. Follow my store's Betsey Johnson Show Diary - we're posting our favorite Betsey looks, pieces, collections, and absolute excitement for the show. Share your predictions and/or wishes for the show and above all, your love for Betsey [whether in pictures, links, videos, anything at all - go crazy!] On there, I've included how to view the show live online, as well as what to do if you have Twitter, to spread even more Betsey love! Here's the brief version:


1* Click through the official 'Betsey Johnson' page
2* Look for the 'Spring 2012 LIVE' tab on the left sidebar
3* Click on it, wait for the livestream to begin & get excited!!!
4* Share your thoughts and reactions with everyone  - here, our 
FB page, Twitter, your FB, Tumblr, everywhere!

If you have Twitter, tweet @xobetseyjohnson with
 the tag #BJNYFW to share your thoughts! 

I've gone back in time to take a look at vintage Betsey
 collections take a peek at these past looks from Betsey's 
Spring shows, then let me know what you think!

Spring 2001

Spring 2002

Spring 2003

Spring 2004

Spring 2008

Spring 2009

Spring 2010

Spring 2011


Share your favorites in pictures, links, videos - *anything* - of your
favorite Betsey moments including designs, pieces, shows, collections,
how you wear your pieces - anything that screams Betsey love!

Follow my Twitter @FearlessBfS as I'll be tweeting live as the show happens!
Ahhh I'm so geeked it's kind of ridiculous. I'm off to finish my piece now for class.
Stay tuned for another 30-Day Fall essential.

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