What's on your summer must-buy list?

Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Golden Rule of Shopping

Let's start with the mirror- at the very least it should be full length and if you have access to a second mirror of any sort then use it! Mirrors are second only to your best friends when it comes to building a great closet. 

Once faced with the mirror, I ask myself the most important question: 


Ladies, I urge you all, if the item does not fit do not put it back in your closet. I'm not judging, I'm so very guilty of buying the 'I'll lose weight for this' dress and then letting it sit in my closet over the years, taunting me and making me feel like the rest of my wardrobe is inadequate because it actually fits. It's funny how I'll justify purchasing an item like this with some crash diet scheme and yet in the same shopping trip I'll purchase three items that fit me as I am... odd logic, isn't it? 

If you can't stop the problem at the source (aka, buying an item that's too small), try to get it out of your closet asap. The sooner you do so the more likely you will be able to resell the item online or at a consignment shop. I know it's so tempting to hold on, especially if you feel it's just a little too tight in one place. As much as we'd all like it, we can't will our bodies to lose weight in a specific area. I have the same problem with every pair of jeans I try on- loose in the legs, tight in the waist. Yet every time I lose weight, the first place I lose it is in my legs. Thank you, genetics.

We've attached such a stigma to the phrase "this doesn't fit." Fit isn't about the smallest size we can pour our bodies into- it's about finding something that matches your proportions. But when you're trying on clothes you already have, if it's too small toss it or store it somewhere that's not your immediate closet. If it's too big and get it tailored- if you find the right tailor, your options are endless and your closet will thrive. 

Finding items that fit is only the beginning, as Oprah says, everything in your closet should make you feel like a million bucks. The trick is looking like a million bucks- come back later this week for tips on how to rethink your existing wardrobe. 

Think you're a master at recycling old clothes? Email me your most inventive outfits with the prices(or approximations)  and where you bought them... I just may feature your look!

Dress to Impress, 


Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Steps: evaluating your wardrobe

This year, exert all your spring cleaning energy into your closet. Don't be scared to make a mess and don't be scared to throw out a ton the first time you do it. Every year I like to absolutely destroy my closet and take stock. I pretend I'm on What Not to Wear and I try on all the items I haven't worn in the past few months. 

I think most of us fear/dread a real closet over-haul because it's hard to find a comfortable starting point. I conquer these feelings by playing dress up for the first 30 minutes. I grab the most outrageous items first; a vivid tangerine patterned cocktail dress, oversized vintage sweaters and my one day I'll lose ten pounds and look great in these jeans. None of these items have ever made it past my bedroom door and the time has come to decide whether or not they ever will. 

I ask myself the same list of questions for every item; sometimes I throw it out immediately and sometimes I go through my whole list and still feel uncertain. Once you've thrown out a few bad seeds you'll feel empowered, and maybe a little bit lighter. 

Over the next week I'm going to outline exactly how I go about this process. Start looking for a couple of your un-or rarely-worn items and follow along with me. Need some help deciding? Let us see it!

Dress to Impress, 


Friday, April 24, 2009

Fashion for the heavy hearted

To anyone whose ever had her heart broken by a dress, 
You know the scenario and it's awful- I'm strolling through Bloomie's and a vintage print catches my eye. I push aside a structured jacket and a ruffled blouse to reveal nothing short of perfection. Marc Jacobs, you beautiful man you, how do you excite my tastes every season? The cut is remarkable, the design innovative and for a moment I forget I'm a 23 year-old (almost) college grad with hardly enough funds to afford a Marc Jacobs keychain. Then my eyes hit the price tag, and it's all over. I whimper and tell my shopping buddy, "one day..." 
How unfair is it that so many women appreciate the art of fashion, yet so much good fashion is unreasonably expensive? Why should anyone live a single day of her life in cheap fabrics and shoddy fits? No woman should, and no woman has to! 

After several years of retail, a weekly window-shopping routine, and an online shopping compulsion, I'd like to think I've learned a little about finding diamonds in the rough- workable pieces at the right price. So for the next few weeks I'm going to writing about the ways to build a dynamic wardrobe that won't up those credit card payments... and after that I'll be showing you what I've found and where you can find it. 

And because I believe shopping is the ultimate social activity, I want to know what you ladies have found and where you found it- even if it's one of a kind! 

Stay tuned, this summer's styles are sooo fun. 

Dress to Impress,