You probably wouldn’t guess it looking at me (because I am so pale), but I am a total summer girl. I love beach days, warm summer nights, rooftop drinks, ice cream, you name it. Sometimes I still feel like a kid because I feel sad when the summer starts coming to a close, even though I’m not heading back to school anymore. When I was little, although I didn’t want summer to end, I did look forward to fall for back to school shopping. And even now as an adult, I still get excited to wear my new fall clothes. But with global warming, or whatever it is, it feels like we don’t even have fall weather anymore. However, I still like to dress seasonably appropriate, while still dressing appropriate for the weather. I thought this Smak Parlour dress was the perfect example of how to start incorporating fall styles while still dealing with summer temperatures. Here are some of my tips…
P.S. if you’d like to shop my dress you can find it here:
be selective when wearing fall colors, fabrics or silhouettes:
This dress is the perfect transitional dress because while the fabric feels like fall, because of the colors, pattern and texture, the cut is still appropriate to wear during summer since it is sleeveless. In a few weeks it will be Fashion Week here in NYC, and I always hate seeing girls dressed for full out fall in the sweltering heat. I know we’re all excited about fall clothes, but I personally just think it looks ridiculous to be layered up in leather jackets and knee high boots when its still 90 degrees outside. I prefer to start adding pieces that have a fall feel to them, whether thats the color, fabric or silhouette, but don’t go crazy.
wear closed toe shoes:
Switching out your sandals for a toe closed shoe immediately takes your outfit from summer to fall.
step up your accessories game:
I don’t know about you, but during the summer I definitely don’t wear as many accessories as I do during the rest of the year. I feel like they just make me feel sweaty and weigh me down, so adding accessories can easily take an outfit from summer to fall. I am in no way ready to start wearing tights, but I think these polka dot ankle socks elevate this look and make it feel more fall. I also added my watch, gold jewelry and velvet bow to my hair. I also carried a structured faux leather handbag (not pictured here).
Dress: c/o Smak Parlour
Bow: Claire’s; Earrings: Brightside Boutique; Necklace: In God We Trust; Watch: MVMT; Socks: Hansel from Basel; Shoes: Eastland Shoes
Location: Empire Diner (Chelsea, New York City)
After counting, I've worn this skirt 16 times on my Instagram in the last 3 years. Especially in the age of social media where everything is documented, our society frowns upon "outfit repeating". I on the other hand, don't mind wearing the same items over and over again. Ever since high school, I've tried to adopt to the "European" sensibility when it comes to wardrobe and value quality over quantity. I'd rather own 5 dresses that I love, fit me well and I feel comfortable in, rather than 25 dresses I feel lackluster about. I think the rise of social media has increased our urge to buy. Everyday we are bombarded with bloggers telling us to "swipe up" to shop their latest purchases. In my opinion, one of the negatives of blogging is that it creates excess waste and encourages consumerism. To try and combat wastefulness, I actually like rewearing items on my blog and Instagram. Here are some tips for how to rewear your favorite items:
create a theme:
I often find myself pairing this skirt with a graphic tee. Since graphic tees always have a specific saying or illustration on them, I try to use this as inspiration for the theme for the rest of my outfit. In this case, I styled my look based off of this retro graphic on this Poetic Betty tee. I knew I wanted to wear some kind of scarf around my neck, it seemed reminiscent of a glamorous 1950’s woman driving around in a convertible, just like the one in the graphic. Then I added the pink sunglasses to match the polka dot scarf. Finally, I completed the look with saddle shoes, my signature beehive and vintage camera.
when it comes to outfit photos, let the location be the focal point:
Usually when people go on vacation, they feel like they need to buy a whole new wardrobe, especially because they know they’ll be taking lots of photos. While I agree that it is definitely nice to have one or two new pieces for a trip, I also like to pack tired and true favorites. Wearing a safe bet on a vacation guarantees comfort. There’s nothing worse than trying on something new while on a trip and realizing it doesn’t fit right, doesn’t look good, etc. Also, while on vacation, any photo you take will likely be in a new and interesting location. Anyone looking at the photo will likely be focusing on where you are, and less on what you are wearing.
remind yourself that no one remembers your wardrobe as well as you:
I’m sure we’ve all experienced this feeling…you’re on your way to meet up with a friend you haven’t seen in a while and you suddenly panic that you might have worn the exact same thing the last time you saw them. I do this a lot, but then I try and remember what the person I’m meeting was wearing the last time I saw them. Usually I can’t remember. Then I remind myself, if I can’t remember what they wore, than they most likely don’t remember what I wore either.
What are your thoughts on being an “outfit repeater”? Do you like rewearing your favorite pieces?
If you’d like to shop my shirt, you can find it here:
PS it comes in pink too!
T Shirt: c/o Poetic Betty
Skirt: Madewell; Saddle Shoes: Eastland Shoe; Scarf: Target; Sunglasses: East Village Vintage Collective
Location: Red Hook, Brooklyn
A few weeks ago, I asked a friend what color came to mind when he thought of me, and he answered red. When I posted a photo on Instagram wearing this wrap dress from Karina Dresses, someone commented saying that they thought I looked best in red. I’ve noticed I’ve been drawn to wearing red more in the last couple of years, but thinking back, I remember shying away from wearing it when I was younger. I always perceived red as an attention seeking color. Growing up as a dancer, everyone always said to wear a red leotard to an audition, in order to stand out. I never wanted to (and still don’t) want to be the center of attention, so I usually gravitated towards black and navy blue. While I still love wearing these colors, I am starting to feel like maybe red is more of my color. Maybe its from gaining more confidence from getting older. Maybe its the fact that I live in NYC now and there are lot of crazier things for people to stare at than a girl in a red dress. Whatever the reason, I am definitely going to consider red one of my signature colors from now on.
I’ve read articles recently about bloggers who will only wear one color, in order to have a cohesive Instagram feed. To me this is a bit extreme. At the end of the day I want to wear and buy things I like. However, I have always wanted to have a cohesive and recognizable style, even prior to the rise of social media. While I won’t allow Instagram to dictate what I wear, it has definitely helped me pinpoint my style and really fine tune it. Here are some tips for how to find your signature colors.
decide what colors are NOT your signature colors:
If it seems too difficult to pick your favorite colors, think of it from an opposite approach and what colors you don’t like wearing. For example, I love red, yellow, blue, green, black and white…but that seems like it’s every color of the rainbow! As I said, I don’t want to limit myself and I want to wear the things I truly love, but deciding on a few colors you will not wear is an easier way to narrow down your signature colors. For example, I don’t like brown or purple, so these are two colors you will most likely never see me in.
choose the right tones:
When I was younger, I considered all reds to be the same. I never realized how many different tones there were and the vibe each shade of red gives off. For example, there are rich, classic reds. There are deep, dark Burgundy reds. There are bright, poppy reds. There are reds with an orange undertone. While classic or dark reds come across as very sophisticated, bright, poppy reds are more fun, and these are the red shades I gravitate towards. Choosing specific tones also allows you to wear more colors with ease. For example, I usually prefer bright, saturated colors, as opposed to dark or pastel shades. For example, I’d choose a saturated mustard yellow over a light buttercup yellow.
balance out your look:
If you’re wearing a color that’s out of your usual palette, find a way to make it “you”. For example, the other day I wore a pink dress I love that I’ve had for years. While pink isn’t usually “my color”, I think that particular dress still fits in with my signature style because of the silhouette, collar detail and polka dot print. If what you’re wearing isn’t one of your signature colors, try adding accessories or shoes in one of your signature colors to unify the look. If you’re trying to take a photo for a cohesive Instagram feed while wearing something off palette, trying picking a location that is in one of your signature colors to balance out your feed.
Let me know if you liked this guide and what your signature colors are!
If you’re interested in shopping my dress, you can find it here:
Dress: c/o Karina Dresses
Bow: Claires; Saddle Shoes: DSW
Location: The Classic Coffee Shop (Lower East Side, NYC)
"Who would ever want to have purple legs?"
I remember one day when I was in high school I heard someone say this in the hallway, only to look down and remember I was wearing plum colored tights that day. I looked behind me to see who made the remark, and realized it was a girl I was "friends" with making fun of me.
I've never been one to stop wearing something just because someone made fun for me for it, but I decided to write a blog post with some tips for wearing colored tights, as I know they can be out of some people's comfort zone when it comes to dressing.
•keep the look neutral
Keep the majority of your look neutral and have the tights be your pop of color, like how the main colors in my outfit here are navy and white.
•anchor the look with sophisticated pieces
Colored tights can easily look juvenile or clownish, but adding more sophisticated elements to your outfit, like my beret and pointy toe flats, will elevate your look.
•tie the look together
If you can add an accessory to pick up the color in your tights, such as a belt, purse or headband, that can really pull the look together. In this case, the lenses in my sunglasses had the same tint as my tights.
Tights: c/o Vienne Milano
Dress: c/o Smak Parlour
Shoes: Franco Sarto (bought from Century 21); Beret: JJ Hat Center; Sunglasses: Vintage
Photos: Jenna McGeehen
Location: The Immigrant (East Village, NYC)
I'm back breaking down another one of my outfits and talking about how I keep my quirky style age appropriate. This look is a little more cute and casual than the look in my last post, so here are a few more tips:
Stick To One Theme:
When I was putting this look together, I thought this strawberry tote and bangle I recently received from Little Arrow shop would compliment this red and white gingham Smak Parlour dress well. Even though both the accessories are quirky, they work well together, rather than overpower one another, because they are the same motif. As for the shoes, I honestly would have preferred to wear solid white sneakers, rather than these ones I DIYed myself, but I don't have a solid pair at the moment. I think it's okay though, because the daisies are pretty subtle, and it still goes along with my springy picnic inspired theme.
Pay Attention To Proportions:
These heart sunglasses are a perfect example of how proportions can determine if your look will come across as childish or age appropriate. Heart shaped sunglasses have been around since I was a kid, and while they are adorable, you want to make sure you are opting for adult frames. Child size frames will inevitably be too small for your face, which will make it obvious you are wearing a kid's item. The asymmetry of these particular frames also add a slight sophistication to the design and make them a bit more mature.
Style Your Hair:
Again, I felt the pigtails would go well with my outfit theme, but pigtails could easily make the look childish. I think adding the sixties inspired bouffant made this look more mature and stylized.
If you'd like to shop my dress you can find it here:
If you'd like to shop my tote bag you can find it here:
If you'd like to shop my bracelet you can find it here:
If you'd like to shop my sunglasses you can find it here:
Dress: c/o Smak Parlour
Bag & Bracelet: c/o Little Arrow Shop
Sunglasses: c/o Hello Holiday
Sneakers: DIYed (shoes are from H&M)
Recently I had someone comment on one of my Instagram photos, saying how they felt they couldn't pull off my style without looking like a kid. By now you probably know I love mixing prints and wearing cute and quirky pieces, but it definitely can be tricky to keep this type of style age appropriate. Yes, there are times when I probably totally look like a five year old, but in general I try to keep my style whimsical yet mature. I thought it might be a good idea to put together a blog post with some tips and examples of how to keep a cute and quirky style age appropriate, starting with this look I shot at Economy Candy, featuring this dress from Dolly & Dotty.
try to stick with only 1 or 2 quirky pieces:
I try to avoid having my outfits look too gimmicky or costumey, so I aim to only have one or two quirky pieces per look. For this look, my Kate Spade taxi flats are that piece. The white tights and green beret also add some whimsy to the look, but don't compete with the shoes.
anchor the look with something sophisticated:
I always try to add classic items to my looks to keep them grounded. Some examples include solid black pieces (like a layered turtle neck or black tights), a structured handbag, or a shoe with a small heel. In this case, the dress I am wearing is classic, in the cut, colors and print, so I was able to have more fun with the accessories.
Obviously children don't wear makeup, so adding this can instantly elevate your look and make it more mature. Here I added a red lip and winged eyeliner.
I will most likely continue this series and break down some more of my looks with additional tips. If you have any questions in the meantime, feel free to reach out!
If you'd like to shop my dress, you can find it here:
Dress: c/o Dolly and Dotty
Beret: Reminiscence Vintage; Tights: Target; Shoes: Kate Spade
Location: Economy Candy (Lower East Side, NYC)
I used to hate fishnet tights. Maybe it's because I was a dancer growing up and we used to wear them as part of our costumes, so they never seemed like an everyday fashion item. Maybe it's because they are often associated with strippers and promiscuity. Whatever the reason, I avoided them, until about a year or so ago, when they became popular. The more I saw them in mainstream fashion, the more I started coming around to the idea of them. Now I incorporate them into my everyday wardrobe. They are especially perfect for this time of year when the weather is starting to warm up, but you're not ready to go bare legged just yet. Below are some tips for how I style them.
•choose a fish net with small holes
Fishnets come in all shapes and sizes. Personally, I prefer fishnets with small holes to large holes. The small hole tights are more classic and offer more coverage on your leg so you don't feel too exposed.
•watch your proportions
Since fishnets offer less coverage than opaque tights, you want to be careful not to show too much skin in the rest of your look. For instance, with this look I felt comfortable wearing fishnets because my dress is more conservative since it's knee length and loose fitting. I would avoid wearing dresses or skirts that are too tight or short with fishnets.
•keep your shoes classic and conservative
Again, you want to keep your fishnet look classy, so choose a shoe that is more on the conservative side. You can still wear heels, like these Mary Jane shoes I am wearing here, but stay away from anything too crazy.
If you'd like to shop my dress, you can find it here:
Dress: c/o Karina Dresses
Sunglasses: Hello Holiday; Shoes: Steve Madden
Location: Shade (West Village, New York City)
There are a lot of amazing things about living in NYC, but trekking around in freezing cold temperatures is not one of them. I've always looked forward to summer, but since living in NYC, I look forward to it even more. Yes, sometimes the sweltering temperatures can be equally as unbearable as the cold, but in general, the city is just so much more magical during the warm weather months. More hours of sunlight, drinking on rooftops, and the ability to simply throw on a cute sundress and be on your way. I know most New Yorkers can't wait to bust out their leather jackets once fall rolls around, but on the contrary, I always feel sad packing away my summer clothes. So I've partnered with Malibu Rum to show you that it is possible to rock tropical prints all year long and a summer state of mind is just a sip away.
-add a turtleneck
Throwing a cardigan on is the most obvious solution to wearing a summer dress in the winter, but instead I decided to layer a turtle neck under this dress. I think this combination is a bit more unexpected. You could also try throwing a chunky sweater over top so only the skirt of the dress is showing for a more subtle tropical look.
Adding tights is a must for pulling off a summer dress in winter. Otherwise, you will totally look like THAT girl who got a little too exited when she saw the weather report said it would be 50 degrees that day.
-wear seasonally appropriate shoes
Make sure your shoes are seasonably appropriate. I opted for black, suede Mary Jane's. Even with tights or a sweater, pairing this dress with sneakers or sandals would look like I was a little too overzealous for summer.
-ground the tropical print with black
-There are hints of black in the print of this dress, so I made sure to ground the tropical print with black items to keep the look seasonably appropriate.
-add some winter touches
As a final winter touch, I added a red beret to my hair. No matter how you style your summer item, just make sure it’s the only one in the look.
Now how many more days until summer?
People are always saying you can't wear red and green together, otherwise you look like you're dressed for Christmas. But this is actually one of my favorite color combinations. There's something very 1960's school girl about this color pairing to me. When I saw this backpack from Leafling, I was immediately drawn to the colors and the embroidery on the side. I decided to take this backpack look full school girl and pair it with this vintage plaid skirt I own (which I'm pretty positive used to be an actual school uniform). If you want to try wearing red and green together, but aren't sure how to pull it off, here are some tips.
If you notice, the majority of my outfit is actually navy, and the red and green are just accent colors. This is key for achieving the school girl look.
•pick the right tones
The red and green I am wearing in this outfit are brighter, more saturated tones, which can easily read very Christmas, but because the colors are in such small positions, it works. Picking darker, less saturated versions of red and green, like a burgundy or forest green would work better if you do want to wear solid red and green pieces together.
you don't have to wear a completely printed outfit like I am here, but adding a print or two is an easy way to tone down a red and green look, especially if you do want to wear bright red and green together. For example, a solid bright red top paired with a solid bright green bottom would look ridiculous, but if you change one of these pieces to a multi color print that has red and green in it, this look easily becomes more wearable.
What are some other color combinations that are taboo, but you love to wear?
Backpack: C/O Leafling
Top: J.Crew, Skirt: Vintage (bought from Arbor Vitae); Socks: J.Crew; Shoes: LF Life
Location: Hoboken, NJ
By now you probably all know I love vintage and thrift shopping. However, I am very selective about what I purchase, because I never want my wardrobe to look like it's full of costumes. If you're new to vintage shopping and not sure which items are worth buying, I've put together a guide to help you.
-classic prints (polka dots, gingham, simple stripes, etc)
I usually pass on items in any of the above prints because it is easy to find modern garments in these prints, so you don't have to waste time altering your vintage find to look current.
Garments yellow over time, so I usually try to avoid all white garments or garments that have white in sweat prone areas, such as the neck/collar, armpits, etc
I know a lot of people love a good vintage band tee, but personally this is something I would not buy vintage. Vintage tees always look super worn and pilled (and for good reason). Plus it's so easy to find a reproduction of vintage tees nowadays, where they have a retro feel without all the wear.
-interesting collars and necklines
Even though oversized collars or exaggerated necklines can look very specific to certain time periods, these are the types of pieces I am always drawn to when I'm vintage shopping. If I do decide to buy something that looks super retro looking, I make sure I alter it to look more current or modernize it with my styling.
Bold and unique prints are also a guilty pleasure for me, but again, they can look very dated very quickly. Again, styling or alterations can easily tone down an amazing vintage print.
Denim is stain resistant and holds up amazingly over time, so I love buying denim pieces second hand. Because denim shorts or jeans are so abundant, you can easily find vintage denim pieces on the cheap too. PS: if you are in NYC, checkout No Relation Vintage in East Village if you are in the market for denim cut off shorts. They have two whole walls and each pair is only about $8.
If you're still on the fence about whether or not to purchase a vintage piece, a good rule of thumb is to weigh the cost vs the amount of time it will take to alter. If I’m not confident I can fix a piece or if I feel l can easily find a modern replica, especially if it’s not super cheap, I won’t waste my time or money attempting to bring it back to life.
Cardigan: c/o Rip and Rose
Dress: Forever 21; Shoes: Franco Sarto (bought at Century 21); Watch: Hypergrand;
Pin: Copper Cactus Vintage
Location: Jim’s Steaks (South Street, Philadelphia)