when you work in fashion, you see a lot of things. a lot of beautiful, amazing, way-out-of-your-league things. you start to rationalize spending hundreds (or thousands) of dollars on "that perfect sweater/bag/shoe/etc" because hello, it's perfect, while at the same time you start to feel like you have no style whatsoever. (not to be dramatic or anything...) try it out: surround yourself with a few dozen fashion editors, lithe models, and chic new yorkers in general, and you will feel like you can't compete!
this rings especially true when you click through tommy ton's street style photos (also mentioned in my last post). if you get snapped by the elusive tommy, you deserve a cupcake or seven because you are one stylish gal. me? i'm still waiting to make the cut. but i can certainly learn a thing or two about adopting a unique sense of style by checking out his latest crop of images, taken at the spring '14 shows in new york, london, milan and paris.
LESSON #1: wear a slip dress, and wear it with an oversized sweater.
in case you are seriously living under a rock, you should know the 90s are back and, in some ways, they're better than ever. take my advice and forgo the acid wash mom jeans, neon high-tops and crop tops; instead, try the most elegant and understated piece from that wonderfully terrible decade: the slip dress. it's demure, it's sexy, it's minimal. but don't underestimate the sweater. without a chunky sweater (or a loose blazer, or a sweatshirt, or whatever else you're feeling – as long as it's substantial) the look veers into neglige/baby spice territory. don't channel baby spice. hanneli mustaparta, above, looks stunning in her printed louis vuitton slip, but I have my eye on this (crazy-affordable) black zara one (this one is good too).with a little black dress, giant sweater/sweatshirt/jacket possibilities are endless.
LESSON #2: mix it up.
there are few things i want more right now than this bedazzled 3.1 phillip lim "i heart nueva york" t-shirt. it kind of captures this precise moment in fashion, and as such i want to wear it like the girl above – with a mash-up of other unexpected things, like a flippy tulip skirt, tough leather jacket, a stack of bracelets and probably some mirrored sunglasses, too. less can definitely be more, but in this case, it pays to pile it on.
LESSON #3: when all else fails, wear all black and/or copy emmanuelle alt.
i don’t know if you can get away with it everywhere, but black-on-black-on-black is really the easiest way ever to get dressed, and it will always look chic, 100% of the time. the reason i don’t think this is necessarily a universal rule is that i never even considered wearing all-black in my hometown of indianapolis; it would read as dark, moody, even a little "goth." if you wear all black in indiana, chances are your friends will ask if you're heading to a funeral. but in new york? london? paris? chicago? LA? not the case. but be bold. wear black wherever you want! chicness knows no bounds. mix up the textures and try this quilted jacket, kitten heels like these or these, and cuffed jeans for a look similar to emannuelle's, above.
LESSON #4: go grey early.
as stated above, all-black is always awesome. it is perennially chic. it is flattering. it is powerful. but maybe i want something a little softer, a little more plush… enter: all-grey. i love this look above -- it's everything i want to wear this season (chunky sweater, structured skirt, giant clutch and subtle heels). i would pair this knit (a size or two up) with this skirt for the ultimate winter minimalist outfit.
LESSON #5: think (baby) pink.
all images via tommy ton for style.com
pale pink is my favorite color, but i'm not the only one -- i could hardly click through style.com or any blogs without seeing someone decked out in the cotton candy hue. pale pink coats are huge for fall (i snagged the perfect one from zara that is now unavailable, but you can get a similar one here, here and here) and alexander wang is doing pale pink bags and accessories for spring. it is universally flattering (your skin will glow next to, say, a pale pink cashmere sweater) and it goes with a range of colors -- like burgundy, navy, black, and dark gray as well as other pastels like pale blue, lilac and dandelion. avoid looking like an infant with some sleek accessories, or dress it down with some ripped denim.
all images via tommy ton for style.com