Sunday, September 25, 2011

2011 Fall Trends Day 7- Texture!

Tactile fabrics with visual texture are a major front runner in the fall collections this year. It just takes one statement piece to rock this trend and I think the best option is a sport coat. They are available in so many fabrications right now, can be dressed up or down easily, and will make your date want to reach out and touch you!

Take this gorgeous velvet jacket from Giorgio Armani, for instance. A crisp white or black shirt and trousers make it a statement evening piece, while a V neck tee and jeans will get you the hottest look at any party.
Tweeds, corduroy, camel hair and even a quilted blazer are all great variations on this trend.
Tweed and corduroy blazer from Comme des Garcons. Available at

Burberry Quilted blazer. Available at Nordstrom.
If you are on a budget, vintage stores can be a great place to find corduroy or velvet blazers. Explore with fall colors such as olive, navy, rust, brown and gray. Regardless of which fabric you choose, this trend is sure to grant you the attention you deserve. And maybe when that date reaches out for your arm, they'll hold on for a while.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

2011 Fall Trends Day 6- Cobalt Blue

Got a case of the blues? Well then you're in luck. Hopefully I've pounded into your head by now that color is in. But cobalt blue is emerging as a prominent color. It was splashed throughout the fall collections and with the spring runway shows winding up, we can see that it is coming in even stronger. It mixes beautifully with your staple blacks and grays, and gives you some pop without going full on neon. If you don't feel it works well with your skin tone, wear it on the bottom instead of against your face!

Calvin Klein Collection
Costume National

Jil Sander
Rag & Bone made this great pair of cobalt jeans available at Barney's. This is a great way to mix colored denim into your closet without departing too far from your regular, safe blue jeans!
Or take it to the top and layer this great Henley from Huyton Union with a casual black jacket and gray jeans.
Huyton Union is available through special order at the following exclusive boutiques:
Changes- Woodstock, NY
Lee Newman's- Cherry Hill, NJ
Michael Allen's- Portland, OR
Riley's- Chicago, IL
Sy Devore- Los Angeles, CA

How do you wear your blue?

Sunday, September 18, 2011

2011 Fall Trends Day 5- Colored Suede Shoes

If Elvis were around today his blue suede shoes would be right on trend! I'm sure you've noticed the overall theme of color lately. This is translating all the way down to your feet! Suede shoes in a delicious fall palette of deep blues, greens, burgundy and mustard are showing up everywhere in styles from boat shoes to desert boots! This is a great way to throw some pop onto a staple ensemble. Some great jeans and a solid shirt take on a whole new look with a colored shoe. My one tip: Either wear these shoes without socks, or pair them with fun, colorful ones. No boring solid charcoal dress socks here, please!  

I saw this great Mohonk Shoe by PF Flyers at one of my favorite Portland stores, Local 35, but they are also available through their online store, or they have a great store locator on their website. When possible, support your local shops!

These fun mustard slip-ons by Tod's are available at Nordstrom. Although they are more casual in nature, you can see by the purple example above that they can easily be dressed up or down.

Salvatore Ferragamo took this trend up a notch and made a beautiful more formal shoe in this blue version. Talk about class! Now THAT'S how to amp it up at the office!
What color will your feet be rocking this season?

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

2011 Fall Trends Day 4- The Turtleneck

Oooooh, I love this trend. My husband will be the first to tell you that in my personal book, turtlenecks never went away! I find them highly attractive on men. So it is with great pleasure that I tell you all to go buy one! This is a must have piece for the season and can be great layered or on its own. If you read my post from Sunday, Going Grey, then you've already seen a sneak preview of two great examples of this look, one casual and one with a suit.

There are two keys to wearing this trend:
1. If you are going for the layered look, be sure you have a thin, breathable fabrication. Not only does this keep you from being uncomfortably warm, but it allows all the garments to hang nicely without showing bulky bumps under the top pieces.
2. This is not the mock turtleneck. Don't wear those.

Let's take a look at some great examples of this trend!


(I could do without the floppy hat.)

So there you have it. Whether you choose a fun bright color on its own, pair it with your favorite suit, or layer up with a vest sweater vest and cardigan, you'll be right on trend. How will you wear this great look for fall?

Sunday, September 11, 2011

2011 Fall Trends Day 3- Going Grey

Almost every season, the fashion industry tries to come up with a new staple base color, and they say something silly like "Pink is the new black." Let's face it, no one is going to wear that much pink, and nothing will ever really replace black. That being said, there is a huge trend toward grey right now. If you read my Why Buy Custom post then you already know that your go to suit should be a dark charcoal. Grey truly does make a great base for your wardrobe for several reasons. First of all, its not a color. Its on the black and white gradient scale, so you can't clash with it. Second, there are so so so many hues of grey from light stone to dark charcoal and everything in between. Three, its not as severe as black, so for certain business situations when you need to give off a more approachable air, its perfect. Because of the variety of hues, layering grey pieces makes for an interesting monochromatic look, which is what we are seeing all over the runway this season. This trend is everywhere from casual to business, from sweats to suits.

Here are a few ways to work this look on your day off:
I'll start with the most casual look from T by Alexander Wang. If sweats are just too casual for you, take the same look with a great pair of Grey Jeans.
This next look is from SAND. Do you know what makes this look extra fabulous for fall? There are three huge trends mixed into this one ensemble. Along with the layers of grey, The Chunky Sweater is a must have item for fall, as is the turtleneck, which I will feature on Wednesday! You can't go wrong with these staple pieces. Switch out the wellies for a cool work boot or sleek dress shoe, depending on your personal style.
Step it up to business casual like you walked off the runway at Michael Kors. 99% of you will modify this look with a not-quite-so-deep V neck tee.
And Calvin Klein Collection finishes off the options with a classy turtleneck and buttoned jacket for another ensemble upgrade.
So there you have it. This fall, no one is too young to go grey.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

2011 Fall Trends Day Two- The Grown Up Backpack

A few years ago the messenger bag (man bag, satchell, what have you) became the must have Men's accessory and its been hanging on strong! But its about to get trumped! Backpacks are, well, back! And they're being designed with clean lines, sophisticated fabrications, and a sleek professional look appropriate for the office. This is not your high school student's backpack. On top of being the hip happening thing, they're much better for your physical alignment. The weight distribution they offer is so much better for you! When I measure guys for custom clothing I can almost instantly guess which shoulder they carry their bag on. It actually becomes more sloped with time! Just remember--don't put on your suit jacket until you've taken off the backpack. Those wrinkles would not be becoming! Here are just a few options to tempt you to stow away that brief case for a few seasons.......

The first two are from Herschel Supply Co.  I first saw them at a great store near my home called Local 35, but they are also available at Nordstrom and on Amazon.

Herschel Supply Co. Little America Backpack

Herschel Supply Survey Scouting Backpack

If you haven't noticed from numerous previous posts, color in general is in. WAY in. Seil Marschall is ahead of the game with this fantastic bright backpack available at Mr. Porter. 
Seil Marschall Half Dome Heavyweight Backpack

I think this bag by Duluth Pack is my absolute favorite. Sleek and classy, black leather mixed with always stylish denim! Its a true nod to a company's design team when they specialize in outdoor gear but create something fashionable enough to sell at Barney's! And its made right here in the good old USA!
Duluth Denim Flatpack

This David King & Company pack is meant for your laptop. I've shown the deep chocolate version here but its also available in black and a beautiful cognac color. This is about as bulky as I would go for work. Extra side pockets are great for convenience, and this design is tasteful, but too many can make it look like you actually are going packing.

And get ready, because come spring, you're going to see them in every color imaginable! What do you think. Could you pull any of these off at the office? Would you be inclined to make the switch? Why or why not?

Sunday, September 4, 2011

2011 Fall/Winter Trends Day One- The Chunky Sweater

Today kicks off my September Series featuring all the must have pieces of the season! Today's winner? The Chunky Sweater.

Heavy cable cardigans with a shawl collar, thick Nordic Fair Isle sweaters, any chunky knit will do! I prefer versatile solid neutrals that can layer nicely with a tee, button down or maybe a vest, and a cool scarf.

What makes it work? I have two suggestions. The first is proportion. This piece is bulky, and you don't want to look sloppy, like you are lounging around the house on a Saturday in your jammies and we happened to catch you while running out for beer. So keep the bottom trim. You don't want voluminous proportions on both the top and bottom simultaneously. So a trim pair of jeans or cords will work nicely. Take a look at Brad Pitt here:
While I totally applaud the highly fashionable sweater, he still looks a little frumpy. Its the pants. He can pull those off with a nice trim tee or turtleneck on top, but the sweater requires a slimmer fit on bottom.

Here's a picture off the website for Allsaints Spitafields. If you aren't familiar with this company (both men and women) you HAVE to take a second and check them out. Their quality is fantastic, they are constantly cutting edge, and are notorious for unique detailing in their construction. But back to the sweater:
See? Trim pant and the proportions look right. Granted, these are full on skinny jeans, but slim straight cut jean or cotton pant will work just as nicely. The fantastic online Men's store, Mr Porter has a feature article this week on their site about chunky shawl collar sweaters, four of the five examples of which pair them with a trim jean or trouser.
Nathan Stewart-Jarrett

My other suggestion is, contrary to what might seem intuitive for this trend, avoid vintage. Unless you have a really high end vintage shop that is very discerning about what they resell, vintage sweaters often have bad piling--which only makes them look to be exactly what they are. Old. This is a piece you can wear for years to come, so invest in a nice chunky sweater, be warm, comfortable and right on trend.

Do you already have this trend in your closet?