Runway to Your Way: A White Shirt – 9 Ways

One of my favorite online spots for great ideas is Shopbop. Not only do they carry great lines but they also pull together great looks to showcase these pieces in action, separated by different themes and storylines. So when I was that the feature of the week was a white shirt 8 ways, I was in.

They asked four different stylists to come up with two different looks that used a classic white tunic as the base. Now, you know that I love a crisp white shirt, so I thought I’d share a look I’d create using that fab white shirt.

First, the shirt. A BB Dakota tunic at $80. I love the classic sleeveless look with the straight hem – very polished – and the versatility of its length – wear it in, wear it out, lots of options.

BB Dakota Tunic

Next, off to one of my other favorite resources, Polyvore, to scout out some items to wear with the white shirt. But since I love a bargain, I had to do a quick search for other options. Found two great alternatives – a DKNY for $63 or a RVCA Tribeca for $44 – both available at lovely Zappos.

DKNY

RVCA Tribeca

And guess what, lo and behold I had a white tunic by LA Made in my closet that I purchased at the magical price of $24.99 from TJ Maxx. You never know what’s lurking in your wardrobe already! And it has a cowl neck – very cute, indeed.

My look?

The new Gap 1969 jean leggings underneath with an oldie – my Allison Taylor beige cotton cropped jacket – nestled under the cowl. Paired with bejeweled Nine West sandals and my fave Kaenon sunglasses (amazing sunglasses, my friend owns the company).

What would you pair with your tunic?

July 25, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Runway to Your Way. 4 comments.

How To: Pick the Right Summer Pants (Or “Put back the capris!”)

I started working on a post about how to pick the right style of shorts for your legs (coming! promise!), but as I was browsing through TJ Maxx looking for inspiration (and some wedges on sale), I found myself in the most horrific aisle of the store – the capri section. As I came to a screeching halt, my eyes transfixed on the way-too-vast selection in front of me , I knew that I had to shelve the shorts story and send a plea to all of you. Put the down capris down and slowly back away!

Capris do not look good – on anyone! Need proof? Just pick up a Victoria’s Secret clothing catalog and check out the capri section. Capris make those gorgeous models’ calves look they have grown two sizes. The problem – the capri ends mid-calf, and since they aren’t fitted, they make your leg look thicker than it really is.

Now, I know what you are going to say. They are just so comfortable! I understand as I do indeed own a few pairs of capris. Each summer, I seem to be drawn in by their refreshing fabrics and fun colors, but I’ve got stronger over the years and am now able to resist their persistent pull. Mostly because I’ve branded an image in my mind, of myself, wearing white linen capris that had branding at cuff. I shudder just to think about those pants.

So comfort you want? Then comfort you shall have. Here are some alternatives to the capri.

Pack it Up. The Cargo Pant is a hot trend for the summer. You no longer have to worry about smacking someone with your side pockets like with cargo pants of old. These days’ cargoes are simple and slim. Check out the J.Crew Linen-Silk Cargo Pants.

J Crew Linen-silk cargo pants

It’s Okay to Slouch. Summertime is the right time for a little slouching. Though relaxed in the fit, slouchy pants still look great on a date, especially with when rolled at the cuff. Pair with stacked high heels and a fun tank. Gap Slouchy Pants

Gap Slouchy Belted pants

Elongate It. Just because it’s summer, doesn’t mean you have to wear short pants all of the time. A full-length pant in a light fabric can feel and look just a fresh, especially in fun summer colors or a crisp white. Check out the Old Navy Button Front Wide Leg Pants – love the wide bottoms.

Old Navy Button Front Wide Leg Pants

Island Fever. Living the luxe life? Try the Georgie’s St. Bart Pant – gorgeous brown silk for tropical island nights or perusing Parisian shops by day.

Georgie St. Bart's Pant

June 27, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , . How To. Leave a comment.

How To: Shop a Mass Discounter

In addition to Wardrobe Staple and Runway to Your Way, put2gether will also feature a How To each week. How To’s will answer your most frequently asked questions, so please email them in!

To kickoff our How To’s, I’m going to start with one that frightens a few women and many a man – how to shop mass discounters.  For those in the frightened category, I know what you are thinking. “They are big, there is lots of stuff and I don’t where to even begin, so I don’t even bother.” I understand – there is a lot of stuff and many discounters can be crowded and unorganized. But if you bring a method to the madness, you can walk out with some pretty sweet deals.

The example we’ll use today is TJ Maxx. (Invariably, whenever one of my friends asks me where I got something I’m wearing, I have the same answer – TJ Maxx.) To help you create a plan for navigating the stormy sea of sale merchandise, I’ve enlisted the big guns – my grandmother, Ruthie. Ruthie is the queen of ferreting out a good deal at “TJ’s,” as she calls it, and has schooled me in her ninja-like approach. I’ll be sharing some of her best tips today.

  1. Get ready. Ruthie always goes in with a plan. She knows exactly what she’s looking for, whether it be a winter coat or a replacement crisp white shirt, but she doesn’t think brand. “You may be disappointed if you are looking for a certain brand name,” says Ruthie. “Instead, focus on finding the right fit for your body. You will be surprised at the number of choices you will have.”
  2. Get focused. Okay, you have your plan – you want a new trenchcoat. Grab your cart, beeline it over to the coat section and work your way through the rack. Start at the beginning and look at each option. “Be open to what is available, but still be choosy,” says Ruthie. “If nothing catches your eye, don’t settle – remember, only buy what looks great on you.”
  3. Get a’grabbing. You see three trenchcoats that look like they may fit the bill. What do you do? Grab them all and put them in your cart. Don’t subject yourself to pre-buyer’s remorse, which is watching someone else walk off with that item you just put back on the rack. If you think you like it, grab it immediately. “There’s nothing worse than looking for that piece you just put back and seeing it being wheeled away in someone else’s cart,” says Ruthie. “I’ve learned that if I like it even just a bit, it goes in the cart – then I’m safe to decide when I’m ready.”
  4. Get sorted. Once you have grabbed everything that you like, either bring it to the dressing room or find a nearby mirror. Without the distraction of further shopping, you can now focus on what looks good and what might look better on the hanger. This is when you mentally shift gears. “Once you are done shopping, you can give those items some real attention,” says Ruthie.
  5. Get out. Yes, there are a lot of aisles, but you don’t need to shop them all. Make the trip less overwhelming by hitting just a few sections of the store, armed with your plan. “I tend to only hit a few sections on each trip,” says Ruthie. And remember, just because it’s on sale, doesn’t mean you have to buy it.

In addition to Ruthie’s plan, which I follow to the letter (which I have to do because my TJ Maxx is next to my grocery store, so it’s a little too readily available for me), I also have a list of items that I will rarely buy elsewhere because retail discounters really do have great discounts.

  • Crisp white shirts – as previously discussed, whites yellow fairly quickly and need frequent turnover to remain “crisp”
  • Black pants – just as white yellows, blacks fades over time, particularly black pants
  • Trends with short shelf lives – if a trend looks to be big for the spring, but most likely won’t last past summer, then I’ll buy it at a discounter

Now you are armed and ready to shop!

My most recent favorite discounter buys include a French Connection grey and black knit dress, black Kenneth Cole heels with metallic studded trim and dark-wash Habitual jeans, at more than $200 savings off the regular retail price. What is your favorite fashion steal from a mass discounter?

March 20, 2010. Tags: , , , , . How To. 1 comment.