LOVE Nordstrom's Anniversary Sale!!

Anniversary Sale curtains Today was the first day early access day of the Nordstrom Anniversary sale.  (The sale officially begins July 17th and you need a Nordstrom card to enter and shop between now and then but no one checked to see if I had a card.)  Personally I think that this sale is genius.  Basically it's the ability to shop the styles that will be sold for the Fall at sale prices.  I'm mostly sure that everything is 30 - 40% off.  After the sale when the pieces go out on the regular floor (right now they're shrouded behind gauzy curtains) they go up to regular retail price.

"It's hot as Hell outside!!" you're saying.  "Why in the world would I want to buy pieces for Fall right now??" you're asking.   Well, I'll tell you.  The advantage is that you can buy pieces on sale prices when they still have lots of sizes available, as opposed to an end of season sale when it's basically a bunch of size 00's left.

Perhaps the most important question is, "How am I supposed to know now what I will want to wear in the Fall?"  Here's my strategy:

jacketBuy the big-ticket items that will last a few years, like leather/suede jackets, coats, boots, handbags or watches.  Think about it.  How many years has the winter rolled around and by the time you got around to hunting for thcatalogose pieces you either couldn't find your size or weren't willing to pay the price?

Buy the designers that you wouldn't normally allow yourself to pay full retail for so you end up hunting down last season's styles online only to find out that your size is no longer available.  (example: DVF, Joie, Rag and Bone, Hugo Boss, $200+ jeans, etc.)

Buy trends for Fall that you know you're gonna want to wear.  For example, fur ANYTHING (faux sure!), plaid, flounce hem skirts, skinny scarves, either already attached to the neckline or not and high-waisted wide leg pants.

As for me, for the past few years I have been trying to convince myself that my 10+ year old leather jacket was still presentable... which it's totally not!  So now I am the proud owner of a new leather jacket and I don't feel guilty one bit 'cause my mama would be proud that I didn't pay full price!!  Added bonus... I'm totally looking forward to Fall now!

How to make it a Happy Father's Day!

If you're going to give your dad a tie or other clothing item this Dad's Day don't turn it into a style exam.  Lots of men are clueless when it comes to pairing pieces together.  So unless your dad is sartorially savvy there are two ways to an easy home run (like how I squeezed a sports analogy in there?!) for you and a passing grade for him. First, put together an ensemble instead of a soloist.  He will be grateful for a sure thing.

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Second, stick with his personal style.  You might think he is too conservative but you can show him conservative with style!

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Happy Father's Day to the fathers in your life!

The Holy Grail - Cute Mommy-On-The-Go Shoes

No Stilettos SignThere are certain questions I get asked a lot. One of those questions is what shoes to wear and still look cute as a fully functioning mommy-on-the-go. With two young boys of my own this is a struggle I am all too familiar with. I give props to the women that can do it, but for me stilettos and kiddos don't go together. Let me go ahead and add a few other curves into the mix based off of my own struggles.

I am not tall and I do not have skinny legs. In my experience "skinny" is as subjective a concept as "affordable". However I think it is fair to state as a fact that I do not have cute, thin legs (I will stop there lest I fall into a self-deprecating rant) and I am all of 5'4". Therefore I prefer shoes with some heel and/or pointy toe to give a leaner and longer look.

I live in Houston. Right now it is the middle of October and it's a lovely 85 degrees with 45% humidity. Great for being outside, NOT great for knee-high boots and it could be like this until Thanksgiving. I'm not complaining, but it does make wearing cute Fall fashions a challenge.

With all this in mind, here are some suggestions beyond the obvious knee-high boots, for all the busy women out there, like me, that want to be on-the-go and look cute doing it this Fall.

Fall in Houston

But what about me?

As you might imagine I have read a lot of different articles and books about different body types: pear, apple, V, M, goddess, etc.  All attempts to help us weed through the overwhelming sea of options out there.  The trouble, as some have already heard me say, is that clothing is a mass-produced industry for humans... of which no 2 are exactly the same.  I'm sure you have seen that someone else that wears the same size as you can look totally different in the same garment.  So I thought I might do the next few posts about figure characteristics that are less often addressed but can be challenging when it comes to finding clothes and what to do to look your best. NYDJ 'Marilyn' Straight Leg Stretch Jeans

First up, the high-rise petite. When a garment comes in both a petite and missy size the petite will be shorter in the length from top to bottom but also from shoulder to bust, bust to waist, waist to crotch, crotch to knee and knee to cuff.  The measurement from the crotch to the top of a pant or pair of shorts is called "the rise".  Some women find that petite pants are great in the inseam and knee placement but much too low in the rise.  When it comes to jeans this is especially challenging because jeans tend to have a low rise and shortening the rise for a petite can be obscenely low.  If this sounds like you then try "NYDJ" (Not Your Daughter's Jeans) in the petite cut. These jean's characteristic high rise is often a Godsend for petites with a high rise. Dresses and skirts are also very flattering on high-rise petites because it removes the need to define the area and evens out the body's proportions.   It's especially good to wear dresses that focus on the waist.

MICHAEL Michael Kors Matte Jersey Maxi Shirtdress Lastly, wear shoes that do not cut off the leg.  If you want to take advantage of this season's ankle strap trend then look for ankle straps that are close to your skin tone.  Otherwise look for shoes that are open to the toe box or front of the shoe.

Do you have a fashion frustration?   Recline on the chaise and tell me all about it... I'll do my best to give you some possible solutions.

Thanks for reading! Jodi

Put down those platform heels and step away slowly...

Manolo BlahnikSpring 2013 Damnet!  I was just getting accustomed to teeter-tottering around on platforms.  But one thing you can always depend on in the fashion industry is change and this spring's remodeling focus will be on your feet.  After years of platform heel heights towering higher and higher designers have decided to put their foot down (or rather ours since most of them are men and don't wear the darn things in the first place.)  According to Vogue's January 2013 issue, platforms are on their way out and single soles are the way to go.  Don't worry, you needn't quit cold turkey, keep rockin' those platform heels.  As a matter of fact, a lot of the designers were showing a mix of platform as well as single sole pumps and sandals in their Spring 2013 shows.  But if you're planning to take advantage of all those after-Christmas and New Year's sales you might want to focus on single soles .  Ultimately you'll get more seasons out of a trend if you buy it at the start.One particular shoe style seems to be popping up all over the place.  The ankle strapped pump.

Tom Ford - Spring 2013 RTW
Tom Ford - Spring 2013 RTW (Photo: Style.com)

Gorgeous, sleek, sexy... but not so flattering if your legs or ankles are less than svelte.  If you still want to embrace this trend without cutting off the line of your leg too much try a pair with a nude ankle strap or another color closer to your skin tone.

Christian Dior - Sp'13

Now if you'll exuse me, I have to go buy stock in Dr. Scholls.

Happy 2013!!

A Sign of Sexy Things to Come

I'm all hot and bothered about Fall fashion... or maybe it's just the fact that it's still sweltering hot in H-town.  No, I'm pretty sure it's the sexy style of Fall 2012.  It seems as though the whole world has gone crazy for Fifty Shades of Grey and we are all dying to be a little naughty and a lot sophisticated.  Here are some ideas for how to get the look.

Texture, texture, texture!!  It's all about tactile fabrics that bring depth: shiny leather, embossed leather, soft velvet, sheer chiffon, smooth wool, silky satin and fur.  These textures combined are what will give your outfit interest and that "gotta touch" personality.

Colors are deep and rich.  predominantly but not limited to, black, red, purple, black, white, grey, black, black, black... did I mention black?

Silhouettes are fitted, sleek and uber-feminine.  There are touches and hints of S&M, with straps and locks and such... but tastefully done, of course.

So bring out your inner Ana, your most sensual purring sex kitten and let your hips sway when you slink into this Fall's sexy styles.  Yes PLEASE!!

Tuesday Tips & Tricks: Red hot!

As most of you know my family and I recently relocated to Houston, TX.  Since I grew up in San Antonio, it's nice to be back in the Lone Star State!  (Also the fast-food breakfast taco state... yay!!)  Now, I remember that it's hot here in the summer but I think I may have forgotten what 103 degrees feels like.  Needless to say, it's HOT!  Which makes it a little difficult to get in the mindset of cool-weather clothing.  But there it is, at the front of every store, the first deliveries of fall, enticing us with rich shades of purple and gold.  However, there are ways to start introducing fall trends into your current wardrobe that will carry you through the season. One of my favorite trends this season is the color cherry red.  So bold, feminine and SEXY!  Consider a red shoe, like this one or maybe dip your toes into a cherry red polish.jag-u-are.

Personally, until the temperatures here in Houston get below the triple digits I'll be dipping in the polish then the pool!   (Man!  It's hot here!!!)

Another update, for those that don't know, I'm due to have my second kiddo in a few weeks so I'll be on maternity leave for a while.  That being said, I'm always available on email so send me your fashion faux pas and conundrums and I'll do my best to steer you in the right direction.  I will also be posting my full Fall 2011 fashion forecast on my website soon, so keep an eye out.  Most of all, remember that the most important style accessory is to be your genuine self.  Go forth and conquer!

Jodi

Tuesday Tips & Tricks: a time to give

You might be familiar with "Dress for Success", an organization that helps women get back on their feet by assisting them with professional attire that they otherwise wouldn't be able to afford.  Well during the month of September, Men's Warehouse is hoping to do the same for men by funding "The National Suit Drive".

If you haven't already, you're probably thinking about going through your wardrobe and moving the cool weather items to the front.  Now is the perfect time to go through your/your husband/boyfriend's suits and finally pull out those that are never worn anymore.  Your donation could be the difference to another man's confidence.  So if it's something you had in mind but have been putting off, please take the time to go through your men's suits now and donate at your nearest Men's Warehouse before September 30th.  While you're at it, go ahead and pull out some women's suits to donate to "Dress for Success".

For more information and to find the locations nearest you click on this link and visit the Men's Warehouse website.

Have a wonderful week!

Jodi

Tuesday Tips & Tricks: "but it doesn't show your shape"

Last Wednesday I went out for a (desperately needed) "girl's night out". After spending, shall I say, many, many, minutes getting ready, I came downstairs to find my husband and son watching "Top Gear". My husband glanced at me and then returned his gaze to the TV without a syllable uttered.  Needless to say, I was disappointed that my husband was not blown away by my appearance, and when I commented on his obvious lack of enthusiasm he replied, "but it doesn't show your shape". As a wife I was pretty annoyed at his response, but as a stylist I knew exactly what he would say. I knew my blouse was too flowy and big for his taste since it pretty much hid my curves.  As a matter of fact, that's why I wore the top for a "girl's night out" instead of on a date with my husband. 

Ironically, the day before I had been interviewed for an article in the Detroit Free Press about appropriate dating attire ("Get date wardrobe right from the start", Kristin Bull, Detroit Free Press, 15 August 2010). In my conversation with the author I stressed the importance for women of feminine dressing that shows curves and the significance of an overall air of confidence and ease. For men we discussed the value of making an effort: wearing a casual blazer, shining shoes, etc. Basically both sides want to know that they were considered and worth the effort. 

Fast forward to yesterday when in a conversation with a friend's family member I was told, "I saw the article but since I'm not dating I didn't bother to read it."  

This all left me thinking and reminded about the importance of considering who you want to impress while choosing your attire. Whether it's a date with a stranger, your long-time significant other, or a potential business relationship, similar rules apply. While it's important to stay true to your own sense of style, you should also know your audience and dress accordingly. And if your husband doesn't like your outfit for a "girl's night out" you can just say, "that's okay, honey. I wasn't dressing for you anyway." 

Have a wonderful week! 

Jodi