Date Night in Black and White

Last night, the man and I had a dinner date at Brazikat, a Brazilian steakhouse in the St. Louis area.  Being a vegetarian, this was clearly the man's choice, but thankfully, I still had lots of yummy options.  If you're from the area or planning a visit, let me just say - the grilled pineapple can't be beat!
Skirt:  The Limited (Similar here)
Blouse:  New York & Company
While the food was delicious and the live music created a wonderful ambiance, my favorite part (besides my great company, of course) was getting a chance to dress up.  The weather was cool, but not too cold, so it was a great chance to wake up the legs from their winter hibernation by baring a lot of leg!

I've had this blouse for a while but have only had a chance to show it on the blog in one grainy photo.  The dramatic ruffle is so lovely, and I find asymmetrical hemlines very flattering.
Jacket:  Target
Booties:  Target (Available here)
Clutch:  Target (Similar here)
I finished the look off with open-toe booties, a printed clutch, and delicate, but slightly tough looking, jewelry.

All in all, I was quite happy with this look.  It has a mix of romance and edge, that I particularly enjoy.
Earrings:  Torrid (Similar here)
Necklaces:  Target and The Limited

What's more, this outfit was super comfortable.  As I've gotten older, I find comfort increasingly important.  Feeling comfortable makes me feel sexy.  A flowy top like this disguises areas I'd rather not show off a lot while the deep v-neck and short skirt show off assets I love to flaunt.
Bangle:  Target (Available here)
What makes you feel sexy?  Are you a fan of large ruffles?

For this skirt in other looks, see here, here, and here.
For this jacket in other outfits, see here, here, here, here, and here.

P.S.  Are you a closed-eye smiler?  I fight against this every time I take pictures, but it's often the same as pics from when I was a year old - squinty eye smiler for life! ;-)


Blush and Back Zips

Happy Friday, everyone!!

Today, I'm featuring two recent work outfits that have a few details in common - blush pink and back zips.

Pants:  The Limited (Sold out on-line; may be available in stores)
Blouse:  LOFT Petites (Sold out on-line; see here)
Pants:  The Limited (Available here)Blazer: New York & Company (Available here)
I'm not usually one to buy multiples of clothing items.  I like variety in my wardrobe, and I don't like looking the same everyday.  That said, when it comes to pants, I make an exception, especially if they are a more basic pant like the navy and black skinnies I'm featuring today.

Heels:  Target (Similar here)
Purse:  Forever 21 (Available here)
Cardigan:  LOFT Petites
Heels:  Target (Similar here)
I love the back zip detail as it gives these pants an extra something, and also because it reminds me of when ankle zips were popular when I was a kid. 

I feel like I'm doing a major booty shot here, but how else am I supposed to show you the cool detail?  :-)
Earrings:  Ixora Boutique (Sold out on-line)
I've long been a fan of blush pink - it reminds me of ballet, and as I've stated here before - I LOVE ballet-inspired fashion.

I love how the pale pink adds a soft detail to the darker neutrals.  Pastels are a HUGE trend this spring, and pink, in all its shades, is having a serious moment this year.
Tank:  Target (Available in other colors here)
Blouse:  Gap (old)
Clutch:  The Limited (Available here)
Necklace:  The Limited
Would you wear blush pink?  Are you a fan of back-zipped pants?

For the blush blouse in other looks, see here and here.
For the black cardigan in other looks, see here, here, here, and here.

For the beige blouse in other outfits, see here and here.


Honorable Mentions 2

Last summer, I featured a few looks in one post and called them "honorable mentions."  These were outfits that didn't make the cut for whatever reason as their own post.  Today, I'm bringing four more honorable mentions - all looks worn to work over this past fall and winter.

For work, I tend to stick to certain formulas (skinny pants or jeans+blouse+blazer) that satisfy my personal aesthetic and the demands of the workplace.  I rarely wear the same exact outfit more than once, but I often tweak outfits that I love, creating only minor variations.  Since a lot of these looks are similar, I don't feature all of them on the blog.  That said, I thought I'd give a few of them an honorable mention...

A work version of this previous outfit:
Pants:  The Limited
Booties:  Target (Available here)
Cami, Blazer, and Scarf:  LOFT

I love red pants with black and white prints.  This fun tote adds a new touch.

Bright red lipstick really doesn't work for me, but my love of a red lip makes me "forget" that sometimes!

Pants and Blazer:  The Limited
Tote:  Isabel and Ruben Toledo for Lane Bryant (Available here)
Top:  Ann Taylor Petites
Heels:  Target (Available here)
Casual Friday options:

A python clutch, burgundy heels, and gold accents add interest to a simple look.

Jeans, Blouse, Blazer, and Necklace:  The Limited
Clutch:  Ann Taylor
Ring:  LOFT
Heels:  Target
Grey jeans are polished for work with a flowy aqua blouse and navy blazer.  Silver and turquoise accents help tie the look together.
Jeans and Blazer:  The Limited
Blouse and Heels:  Target

Cuff:  Gift
What do you typically wear to work?

For the purple blazer in another look, see here, here, and here.
For the lace cami in other looks, see here, here, and here.

For the red pants in other outfits, see here, here, here, here, here, here and here.
For the black and white top in other looks, see here and here.
For the black tuxedo blazer in other looks, see here, here, here, here, and here.

For the dark jeans in other looks, see here, here, and here.

For the white wrap blouse in other outfits, see here, here, here, and here.
For the black blazer won in other outfits, see here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

For the navy blazer in other outfits, see here, here, here, and here.
For the aqua blouse in other looks, see here and here.
for the grey jeans in other outfits, see here, here, and here.


Monochromatic Blocking & A Pop of Color

Hope your week is off to a fabulous start!

For the next week or two, I'll be wrapping up with some of my recent winter outfits.  I'm hoping that the weather will cooperate, and we will actually have spring weather by then!

Jacket:  Ann Taylor (Available here)
Blouse: The Limited (Available here)
Today, I'm featuring a recent work outfit.  I love monochromatic black and white outfits, but I also like adding in a pop of color with shoes or accessories.

Here, an all black top and bottom creates a lengthening line, while the ivory cropped tuxedo jacket adds a bit of contrast.
Pants:  The Limited (Similar here)
Shoes:  Target (Available here)
Green Mary Janes with a black contrast strap add a pop of color. 

The shoes, satchel, and jacket all have color blocking detailing that help tie the look together even more.
Satchel:  Target (Available here)
Are you a fan of adding pops of color to neutral looks? 

For this blazer in another look, see here.
For this blouse in other outfits, see here and here.


Cassential Links, 3.24.14

Nadia always looks amazing, but I'm triple dog loving this simple, elegant, and sexy look.

Photographer Ji Yeo shows us the side of plastic surgery we don't usually see.

I've wanted to do some boudoir/pin-up photos for a long time, but I always feel too silly.  This post offers tips and love the diversity represented

While you should always wear what makes you happy, these are some pretty solid style tips for curvy girls.

A few years ago, a cop said if women didn't want to be raped, then they shouldn't dress like sluts.  Then, this happened.  A lengthy video but worth watching in its entirety.  P.S.  I have a very short cameo at 51:56.  P.P.S.  So fortunate to have had Brennan as a student back in my teaching days.  One amazing chica!! 

This article illustrates why it's important for us to not be afraid to speak out against social wrongs.

This post on cultural appropriation in fashion really has me thinking about the difference between exploiting and profiting from the fashion/costume of other cultures and cultural diversity/globalization in fashion.  Expect a post on this topic in the near future...

While my life experiences have differed from Kiah, I can totally relate to the inspirational influence of high-fashion and the development of my own style individuality and aesthetic fueled by circumstance.

Loving this ultra lady-like look from Keiko Lynn...and those lip print shoes are the perfect touch of quirk.

UPDATE:  A little shameless self-promotion -

Several St. Louis fashion bloggers offer styling suggestions for the spring 2014 St. Louis Fashion Week Kick-off Party!!  Even if you're not in the area, local bloggers and I offer some fun looks to inspire your spring evenings!

As women, we're constantly bombarded with rules about what we should wear.  In my latest post for The Curvy Fashionista, I say wear what you want and offer inspiration for breaking the petite plus rules of style.


Black for Spring: Ready for the Beach

Hope you all have had a great weekend!
Dress:  Babooshka Boutique (Available here)
Tonight I finish my series on how to incorporate black into your spring and summer wardrobes with a maxi dress that also doubles perfectly as a swimsuit cover.

It was less than 40 degrees today while I was taking these pics, so it is nowhere near swimsuit season in my part of the world.  But, for those of you who live in warmer climates or who are planning a spring vacay, this maxi dress is a great piece.
Swimsuit:  Torrid (Similar here
Sandals:  Target (Similar here and here)
Hat:  Target (Similar here and here)
This dress looks great with shorts or leggings underneath for easy lounge or street wear, but I love how it looks as a cover-up! 

It might be too cold here for a swim, but when warm weather finally hits, this girl will be READY!!!  ;-D
Necklace:  Ixora Boutique (No longer available on-line; see here
Sunglasses:  Prescription
Would you wear an oversized maxi for the beach or pool?

For the swimsuit in another post, see here.


Black for Spring: Aztec Print and Fringe

It's back to an all black look today.  I personally love an all black look for evening and don't see why anyone should stop wearing it in the spring and summer.
Pants:  Target (old)
Fringe top:  Wet Seal (Sold out on-line; See here)
Again, the key to incorporating so much black into the warmer seasons is to keep the fabrics lightweight and to add prints or other design elements that are more typically associated with spring and summer.

The sheer top and lightweight pants are perfect for warm weather.  Fringe is a MAJOR trend for spring 2014, and the print on the top has an easy summer feel.
Ring:  Shoxie.com (Similar here)
My blog profile pic notwithstanding, I'm not someone who likes showing a lot of midriff, but the fringe makes tummy baring a little easier here.  It's covered while not concealing.

For my own comfort level, I would pair a black or beige tank underneath this top as I did here.
Heels:  Target (Available here)
For those of you who are a little more daring, the top looks great with just a bra as well.
Clutch:  Vintage
 A red clutch and sparkly jeweled bangle from Ixora Boutique add fun pops of color!
Bangle:  Ixora Boutique (Currently sold out; See here)
Necklace:  Ixora Boutique (Currently sold out; See here)
 Do you plan on taking part in the fringe trend for spring?  Would you wear a sheer top?

For this top in another look, see here.
For these pants in other outfits, see here, here, here, and here.


Black for Spring: Straw and Spectacle Print

Today, I continue with my series on wearing black in the springtime.
Dress:  eShakti (Available here)
Here, a linen/cotton blend keeps the dress lightweight and easy.  Natural fabrics are a no-brainer in warm weather as they "breathe" better than synthetics.
Shoes:  Target (Similar here and here)
Straw accessories like this fedora, clutch, and wedge sandals are perfect for lounging in the sun.

The evil eye ring adds a tongue-in-cheek reference to the print of the dress. 
The quirky spectacle print just has such a fun spring/summer feel!
Fedora:  Target (Available here)
Earrings:  Express
Clutch:  The Limited
Ring:  H&M
Again, eShakti gets it so right with this dress.  The print is unique, the color palette is easy, and thanks to the custom fit option, the fit is impeccable!  Also, like their other dresses, this dress has pockets!!! 

I think I am slightly addicted.

Would you wear a spectacle print dress?


Black for Spring: Peter Pilotto Mixed Prints and Sporty Details

While I love rocking all black looks in the spring and summer, on hot days, it is usually best to keep black as an accent color.  Pops of white, bright orange, and blues combine with black and mixed prints for a bold casual spring/summer look.
Tank:  Peter Pilotto for Target (Available here)
Skirt:  Peter Pilotto for Target (Available here)
This look combines the athletic, mesh, floral, and graphic black and white trends all in one look!  The skirt and top are perfect together without the cardigan, but the mesh cardigan is a great lightweight topper for chilly air conditioning and breezy spring days.

I finished the look with black gladiator sandals and a straw clutch to help anchor the colorful look.  This outfit has a LOT going on, so the black accessories and cardigan really help keep the bold look more wearable.
Cardigan:  The Limited (Available here)
Clutch:  Target (old)
Mixed bangles and bead bracelets add a fun touch without being overpowering.
Bracelets:  The Limited, Express, Target, eBay, LOFT
Heels:  Target (old)
Earrings:  The Limited
Would you wear a mixed print look?

For this top in another look, see here.


Black for Spring: Cutouts and Lace-ups

Good morning!

With spring right around the corner and summer not too far away (I promise), today, I'm starting a series on tips for wearing black in the spring and summer. While I incorporate paler neutrals and more navy into my wardrobe in the spring and summer, I can never give up my trusty and reliable black.  It's a major staple in my wardrobe, so I see no reason to give it up simply because the mercury has started to climb.

Fabric choice, accessories, and other styling choices can take black from dreary winter to the vibrant and warm days and evenings of spring and summer.

Jacket:  Target
Dress:  eShakti (Available here)
The look I chose for the first post in this series shows that it is definitely possible to rock an all black look in the spring (in my opinion anyway). 

I paired a lightweight cotton dress with bare legs and strappy heels for a breezy effect.  The faux leather jacket manages to stay springy with the lightness of the dress and cutout details.  Spring evenings can still be quite chilly, so a lightweight faux leather jacket like this is a great choice for a spring outerwear piece.

Shoes:  Simply Vera by Vera Wang (Available here)
Coral and jade accessories add visual interest and add pops of spring color. 
Clutch:  The Limited
Earrings:  The Limited (Available here)
A few notes on the dress:  The Morgan dress is another of my recent purchases from eShakti.  I can't believe how perfectly this dress fit right out of the box.  As a curvy petite, I'm so used to clothes never fitting quite right (even after alterations) that when something fits this perfectly, it simply feels amazing.  I chose the custom fit options on eShakti's web site.  I also chose the "short" length as a custom option.
Bracelet:  Target (old)
Would you rock an all black look in the spring and summer?

For this jacket in other looks, see here, here, here, and here.