Category Archives: Digital Findings

ReCreate the Look: Michelle Trachtenberg

While I was flipping through a People Style Watch magazine I came across this photo of Michelle Trachtenberg.

People StyleWatch: Michelle Trachtenberg Rock Band Tee with Velvet Blazer I love the casual, yet cool appeal of the rock band t-shirt layered underneath a dramatic velvet blazer. It’s a simple, stylish look that was easy to recreate – here’s how I did it with clothes from my closet…

Cinderella Rock Band Tee & Free People Velvet Blazer

I layered my Cinderella raglan sleeve top underneath my velvet blazer from Free People. The rich rust-colored topper makes the color pop from within the graphic-print tee; while the comfortable cotton & crushed velvet combo makes this “I’m with the band” look effortlessly chic.

What do you think of this combo? Would you recreate the look?

Now rock on…cuz “You Don’t Know What Till it’s Gone”

Cinderella – Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone) – YouTube.

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Inspired By: The Global Nomad

I apologize for lacking in new posts lately; I’ve been spending a lot of time on research, a last-minute project, and life in general (all things I should have shared, but I didn’t. Sorry!)

The Fall Trend Report I posted on Monday was one of them, but another was a collage I wanted to make (well, technically two collages). After almost completing the first, I wasn’t entirely happy with how it turned out…so I decided to make another. The first is still a work in progress, but after debating over a number of other ideas I had (none of which I’ll share with you because they’re also still a work in progress) it wasn’t until I walked into the carpet boutique I pass by everyday on my way home from the gym, that I finally got my mojo back. The colorful window displays filled with hand-carved furniture, ornate hand-knotted rugs, and unique designs from around the world have always intrigued me, but it wasn’t until a few days ago that I finally walked through the front door.

Carpet Boutique - Bolivian, Turkish colorful hand-woven rugs

Carpet Boutique - Bolivian, Turkish colorful hand-woven rugs

Carpet Boutique - Bolivian, Turkish colorful hand-woven rugs

Carpet Boutique - Bolivian, Turkish colorful hand-woven rugs

Carpet Boutique - Bolivian, Turkish colorful hand-woven rugs

Colorful Bolivian Hand-knotted RugsI ended up leaving the store over an hour later, after having a delightful conversation with an elderly man about some of his Turkish and Bolivian rugs, furniture pieces that he was making, design ideas I’ve been conceptualizing, and a mystery man with a pit bull that he’d just found out was living in his unoccupied house. (As well as a bag full of textile swatches and colorful velvet strands for some other projects I have in the works)

Velvet Strands & Woven Textile

So, inspired by my carpet shop visit, the current ‘Global Nomad’ trend, a book I’ve been reading (Gypset Style) and my personal style as a whole, I created a product collage. I looked through tons of photographs & product images to compile the perfect combination where pleasure, travel and livelihood all coexist in an eclectic style to create the perfect lifestyle. I find it therapeutic to sit down and spend a day making an arts-and-crafts project every once-and-awhile; there’s something about spending a couple hours listening to music and cut-n-pasting that is calming and revitalizes s creative mind.  Have a look at my end result…

Free People "Global Nomad" Product Collage

One of my favorite trends that is still in style this fall, is the nomadic nuances that are found again among fashion. The ‘Global Nomad’ trend is less literal this fall compared to last – think more “worldly”, less “tribal”, but none the less, still very much in style. Some of the elements that define the concept are rich jewel tones, billowy silhouettes, muted earth tones, lavish fabrics, assorted metals, ornate embroidery and ethnic embellishments. The world-traveler’s way of dressing encompasses colorful combinations of juxtaposing prints, an array of textures and lots & lots of layers.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Global NomadSource: style.com

It is also this general notion that I feel my personal style correlates with and my natural way of dressing mimics.  I love creating piled-up wanderlust looks that fuse floral prints with fur, flowy shapes, patchwork lace, and random pieces I’ve gathered from all over the place. Not to be confused with a bum, (which my less fashion-forward male coworkers sometimes relate me to) my layered looks may look like a random mash-up, but they’re actually thoughtfully contrived based on colors, textures, and common detailing.

Free People Graphic Top over Black Maxi DressMy Free People high-low graphic print raglan top worn over a black maxi dress, accessorized with a black & ivory patterned scarf.

Chambray Shirt & Patchwork Crochet PonchoMy Free People chambray shirt layered under my colorful patchwork crochet poncho with leggings.

Free People Dark Floral Dress w Missoni-inspired Crochet PonchoMy Free People charcoal black, floral print silk dress belted underneath my Missoni-inspired crochet wrap.

Anthro Stallion Sweater, Free People Gray Sweater & Ivory Crochet WrapMy Anthropologie stallion sweater underneath my Free People gray sweater worn with my oatmeal crochet infinity wrap

Thanks for always giving me your ‘two cents’ boys…but I don’t need it :)

Alright, well maybe you were right about this one…

UO Striped Poncho, Free People Sweater, Crochet Wrap Hobo OutfitMy Free People gray sweater layered underneath my Urban Outfitters Striped poncho, accessorized with an ivory crochet infinity wrap.

When was the last time you took some time to slow down, sit down, and make something?

Autumn/Winter 2012 Trend Report: A Style Guide for the Fall Season

 Since our hot, summer days are now long gone and sweaters & boots have replaced sandals & shorts in our everyday attire, it’s time to prepare for the impending temperature drop and make sure our style is spot-on when the snow starts to fall.

At the beginning of each new season, I compile a trend report that recaps the key concepts, color palette, patterns, textiles, and silhouettes that are forecasted to be the most popular styles for the upcoming season. I’ve have done this for several seasons and have now made it into a game. Since designers present their collections for the approaching season six months in advance, (Fall 2012 looks actually debuted back in February; but at that time, most of us were tired of the cold weather & eagerly waiting for summer to start) I take a look back at the runway photos and see what similarities I can pull out from all of the different collections. I try to decipher all of the prevalent details from the various outfit assortments and determine which styles from the high-fashion catwalk are going to be picked up by mainstream society on the city sidewalks.

Then, I thumb through the fashion magazines that spell out the current season’s top styles and see how many I accurately predicted. It’s a fun little test for myself that keeps me on my toes and gives me a reason to sit back & scroll through runway show photos of beautifully-crafted clothing, made by incredibly talented designers (but really, who needs a reason to do that anyway)?

Here’s a look my trend report that outlines all of the “Oh, I have to have that” styles for the season…enjoy!

Autumn/Winter 2012 Trend Report:

A summary of the season’s top fashion trends and most popular styles. This go-to style guide will help you achieve some of the best looks for fall.

Key Concepts:

Baroque Opulence:  Gold-threaded curlicues, colorful embroidery, sumptuous silks, ornate designs and embossed surfaces are some of the decadent details that define this design concept.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Baroque Opulence

Matchy-Matchy:  Dressing head-to-toe in a monochromatic color scheme or eye-catching print makes this look a whole body experience.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Matchy-Matchy

Mixing Materials:  Adding another texture as an accent piece, such as a fur trim collar or opposing leather sleeves is popular for fall and adds an unexpected twist to an ensemble.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Fur Trim

Menswear-Inspired:  Minimalist pant & skirt suits make-up this chic, modern look. We may have stolen this look from a man…but the sharp, tailored silhouettes still show off your feminine figure.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Menswear-Inspired Suiting

Equestrian Expression:  Elements of this horse-country attire include quilted vests, cross-body saddlebags, skinny pants, tailored jackets, tweed and two-toned riding boots.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Equestrian

Agent Galactic:  Fashion goes futuristic this fall with Sci-Fi and fantasy inspiration; shiny metallic and sharp shaping have these space-age creations making quite a statement.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Sci-Fi Fantasy

Left, left, left, right, left:  Military-inspired looks have us marching forward in army green, brass-buttoned jackets and trench coats straight from the surplus store.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Military-Inspired

Global Nomad:  The world-traveler’s way of dressing encompasses colorful combinations of juxtaposing prints, a mix of textures and lots & lots of layers. Some of the elements that define this look include: rich jewel tones, billowy silhouettes, muted earth tones, lavish fabrics, assorted metals, ornate embroidery and ethnic embellishments.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Global Nomad

Color Palette:

Cold temperatures means cool hues, so shades tend to get deeper & darker for the Autumn/Winter season. Rich, saturated jewel tones and muted earth tones are almost always on the color palette. But this season’s #1 shade – oxblood.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Oxblood

The deep, burnished Bordeux was by far, the most coveted color to be used by designers and has turned up among clothing & accessories in retailers everywhere.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Oxblood

Pantone also predicted that mixed in with the typical darks, we’d be uplifted with an unexpected mix of bright colors to ease the transition from long, sunny summer days to dark, chilly Winter nights. Their Fall 2012 Color Palette, forecasts for Bright Chartreuse, Pink Flambé, Tangerine Tango, Ultramarine Green, and Olympian Blue to add a pop of color among Honey Gold, French Roast, Titanium, Rhapsody, and Rose Smoke neutrals.

Pantone Color Report - Fall Fashion 2012

* I was a little surprised when I first saw this color concept, I felt the colors they picked were a bit bright for fall; but, seeing as though they’ve been doing this for quite some time now, I’m guessing they’ve gotten pretty good at their predictions. (Pantone has spearheaded color exploration for nearly 50 years. Seasonal color direction & pigment schemes are forecasted 24 months in advance, to allow for designers to conceptualize ideas and manufacturers to produce goods; interesting little tidbit). And I must admit, after looking through hundreds (yes, hundreds!) of photos from many, many runway collections, Pantone did get it right. I saw a lot more lighter, brighter hues than I’m typically used to during this time of year.

Patterns:

Dizzying geometric prints are an optical overload, but also an obsession for many designers & retailers this season. Be prepared to make a statement with precision patterns such as these…

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Geometric Prints

Apparently flowers don’t only blossom in the springtime, even though the sunflowers & daisies are dead, we’re still seeing floral prints pop up in dense designs against a dark background.

Fall 2012 Fashion - Floral Prints

Opulent eastern prints & lavish brocade takes our wardrobe on a wanderlust trip through Asian-inspired motifs, ornate designs, and intricate, colorful embroidery.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Eastern-Inspired Prints

Houndstooth, herringbone, and plaid  are among some of the other cold-weather, classic patterns that turn up seasonally year-after-year.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Houndstooth, Herringbone & Plaid

Textiles:

Less is more when it comes to leather; sleek silhouettes with simple, fluid shapes are favored over edgy designs covered in harsh hardware.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Leather

Luxe velvet offers a soft touch and rich textural element to ensembles this season.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Velvet

Where the Wild Things Are:  Is that a woolly mammoth walking down the street? Nope, just a women wearing an untamed fur topper! Take full advantage of wearing these fuzzy creations this fall, faux or for real!

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Fur

Chunky knits are always a winter-must; cozy up with plush creations for added warmth when it’s crisp & cold outside.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Chunky Knits

Suede, wool, and tweed are three more heavier-hand fabrics traditionally worn during the winter weather; so it’s no surprise we’re seeing them again this year.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Wool, Suede, Tweed

Silhouettes/Shaping:

Cocoon Contouring: Oversized, away from the body silhouettes that have broad shoulders and taper toward the hem.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Cocoon Coats

Peplums and skinny belts define the waist and highlight the hourglass figure.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Hourglass Silhouette

Slender skirts, dresses, and 3/4- length jackets skim just below the knee this season.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Knee-length Hemlines

Smooth shoulders seamlessly round out the upper body.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Rounded Shoulders

Necklines ride high with mock necks & fully buttoned-collars creating full coverage, but not to be misconstrued – the otherwise curvaceous silhouette & intricate detailing still allow you to show off your shape.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - High Collars

Outerwear is an obvious must, and with suiting being so popular this season, we’re seeing lapels that are larger than life.

Fall 2012 Fashion Trend - Large Lapels

Trend reports are a great resource to make sure you stay up-to-date on the season’s most popular styles. I hope you found the one I created to be helpful! Feel free to take it with you when you go shopping for your must-have wardrobe updates so you can make you know the current styles when buying the looks you love!

Sources: style.com & pantone.com

DIY Project: My Make-Shift Jewelry Display

I think I got this jewelry display around seven years ago; but since then, my necklace collection has no doubt doubled.

Pottery Barn Jewelry Display

There’s just no more room to hang any more necklaces from it without risking 1) it tipping over, or 2) having everything tangle. So, I’ve decided to start a new DIY home project and am in the process of creating my own necklace display using a piece of reclaimed wood and a bunch of random decorative knobs that I’ve collected over time.

Decorative Anthropologie Knobs

But until I find the perfect piece of wood (which is much harder in the city of Chicago compared to all of the random scraps I know are lying around my farm back home) I’ve come up with a temporary solution. I made a make-shift jewelry display using my old fabric covered bulletin board and a bunch of stick pins. This at least allows me to string my necklaces by themselves until I finish my final project is finished.

Creative Jewelry Solution - Bulletin Board Necklace Display

Creative Jewelry Solution - Bulletin Board Necklace Display

I looked online for a little inspiration, and here are a couple other creative storage solutions for necklaces others have used that I thought I’d share with you.

Creative Jewelry Solution - Necklaces Hanging from Branches in FrameHanging from tree bark inside an old picture frame

Creative Jewelry Solution - Necklaces Hanging from an Upside-Down RakeHanging from an upside-down garden rake

Creative Jewelry Solution - Necklaces Hanging from Flatware HolderHanging from a flatware holder

Is your jewelry out on display? Or do you hide it away until you want to wear it?

…And does anybody know where I can find a big piece of old, reclaimed wood??

What’s Your Favorite Fashion Magazine?

September is one of the most important months when it comes to fashion magazines. Despite the print industry’s recent decline in numbers lately due to the ease of looking things up online; the mass media publications continue to produce text-size style guides for fall fashion.

September 2012 Fashion Magazine Covers - Vogue, Lucky, W Magazine, People Stylewatch..

“Fall Smartest Buys”, “629 NEW FALL LOOKS!” and “10 Trends You Can’t Live Without” are just some of the tag lines the glossies use to get you to buy when you’re standing in line at the checkout. The mags recap the runway shows, highlight the emerging fashion trends and offer great shopping tips & tricks for where to find the best buys for fall. They are the go-to guides for what to wear to ensure you’ll be in-style this upcoming season. Each one has its own format – mood boards, stylist’s insights, top 10 lists or pictorial examples.

Personally, I prefer People StyleWatch and Lucky magazine. It’s probably wrong of me to say this (being that I’m in the fashion industry), but I’m not a huge fan of Vogue. I often find all of the luxury advertisements and lengthy articles unappealing to flip through. I’m a very visual person and like to pull inspiration from the pictures I see, so all of that text sometimes turns me off. Also, at this time in my life, I don’t find myself in the same category as all of the luxury lines that typically cover the pages. Yes, I look to see what the high-fashion designers send down the runway every season, but I don’t have the bank account to actually afford buying into any of the collections. One day I’ll be able to buy the expensive lines…but right now, I’m just trying to make my rent!

I can’t wait to see the results!!!

P.S. I’m on the hunt for the August issue of People StyleWatch. I accidentally threw mine away before tearing out some pages I wanted for inspiration. And since the September issues have come out, I can’t find it anywhere! If anyone has one please let me know…