Fashion File

April 12, 2012

Fashion File... Polished

Painting your nails is such a fun way to bright and pretty no matter what you have on.  Polishing your own nails is easy and cheap. There are a few places in Charlotte that offer a mani-pedi for $35 Mon-Thurs (Polished in South Park and My Bella Spa), but a new bottle of good nail polish costs less than $10, and you can do your own touch ups. You also don't have to have long nails to look trendy.  Short colorful nails look amazing.

So here are some polish trends for this spring.  (I stole all these pictures from

First of all, if you are going to paint your own nails, splurge on this top coat.  It dries super fast and gives you a thick glossy finish.  I never paint my nails with out it.


Neon colors are so much fun.  Don't be afraid to put them on your finger nails too.  Just make sure your nails are not too long!


Nude nails are always a great way to look finished and natural.  The trend right now is to match your polish to your skin tone.  One article I read said, "this look lengthens your hands."


Glittery polish is great!  It looks fun and doesn't chip as easily (the con to this is it can be kind of hard to remove).  Make sure it looks super glittery, not just shimmery. 


And if you are wanting one of these hand-painted design looks, try these Sally Hasen stickers.  I have bought them at Target and Walgreens.  They are about $9 for 16 stickers and I was able to use one sticker for every 2 toes or fingers.  They were surprisingly easy to work with and stayed on my toes for at least 2 weeks.  They are also easily removable with nail polish remover.  They come in designs and solid colors so if you are not so great at painting, these are a great alternative even if you don't want a crazy design.

There you have it!  Get to painting becasue flip flop season is upon us!

January 26, 2012

Fashion File: One statement at a time

Statement pieces are trendy right now.  A statement piece is anything you wear that really stands out.  Like these shoes...

Statement shoes

Statement pieces can be so much fun.  It is really important not to go overboard.  You really should only make one statement at a time.  So if you are wearing statement shoes like the ones above, you want to downplay everything else.  Here are some examples (Today I swiped all my pictures from Pinterst.  I got sucked into the Pinterest vortex and will not admit how long I spent searching for these pictures)...

Statement shoes are everywhere right now from floral prints to really bright colors and animal prints.  Even TOMS has come out with some awesome patterned shoes.  The thing that is great about the bright TOMS is you can wear them with simple jeans and a black t-shirt but still feel fun.

   Statement shoes 2       Statement TOMS

Bright colored pieces (as I have mentioned before about jeans) are super fun.  Everything else should be neutral.

Statement pants      Statement blazer





It seems like everyone owns at least one statement necklace.  If you are wearing a big necklace you should not have on anything that competes with it.  Especially big earrings.

Statement necklace Statement necklace 2

Here's a great way to wear a scarf and a belt...

Statment scarf     Statment belt

Ok and for fun, a few pictures of an outfit making one too many statements...

Too many statments    Too manyToo many statement 2

December 08, 2011

Fashion File... Nod, don't bow

I was reading a fashion magazine the other day when I came across this sentence... "Nod to the trends, don't bow to them."  Now that is some good advice.  Just because something is trendy does not mean that you have to cover yourself in that trend.  Nod, don't bow.

Here are a few examples...

One thing that is trendy right now is navajo prints.  Personally I am not a fan of this trend and do not have one thing even hinting a navajo print (although I never say never).  Just because it is a trend does not mean you have to run out and get something.  Anyway.  Picture 1 is a bow, picture 2 is a nod.

Navajo 3              Navajo 2


Another trend is colored denim.  Picture 1 is a bow, picture 2 is a nod...

Colored denim 1                                 Colored denim 2








This also goes for how often you wear a certain trend.  Just because belts and scarves are in doesn't mean you wear one every day. 

And while we are on the topic of trends.  Remember that trends do eventually die, although some last longer than others.  Let's all hope the legging trend has a long run because they sure are comfortable.  But every once in a while, we need to learn to let go of trends.  And if you simply cannot get rid of your diamond studded pocket jeans, put them in the back of your closet and pray that the trend circles back soon. 

Nod, don't bow and bury the dead.

November 23, 2011

Fashion File... Puff the Magic Dragon

It is time to talk about the trend of the the puffy jackets and vests.  Keep in mind as you read my comments that I live in North Carolina where we have relatively mild winters.  If you live in Chicago or anywhere the like, some of these rules may not apply.  Here are a few general guidelines you may want to go by when selecting one...

1.  Don't lose your shape.  No one wants to look like a marshmallow.

Puffy jacket 1  Puffy jacket 2
        Good shape               Marshmallow shape


2.  Don't wear it all the time.  It is a good idea to have a dressier coat and a more casual coat.  Maybe like a pea coat type and a puffy coat.

Puffy jacket 5Puffy jacket 3
    Nice Pea Coat                Puffy Jacket with good shape



3.  Don't select too bright of a color.  Go with a neutral and use your scarf to add bright color.

Puffy good color     Puffy good color 2     Bad color
         Good Color                 Good Color                   Bad Color

4.  Personally, I HATE the puffy jackets with the faux fur lining the hood.  Unless you want to look like an Eskimo, you may want to avoid this (sorry if you already have one with a faux fur collar, usually the hoods are removable).

Puffy jacket 4                     Puffy bad color bad collar
        Bad Collar                        Bad Color, Bad Collar (double trouble)



5.  Unless you are going skiing, don't look like you just came down from the slopes.

Puffy bad shape bad color               Puffy ski
    Bad color, bad shape        You wouldn't even ski in this right?


To close, the fun thing about puffy jackets is you can find them fairly cheap.  I got mine on sale at Old Navy for $30.  You are guaranteed to find some on sale on Black Friday for those of you crazies who are going to brave the crowds.

October 07, 2011

Fashion File... Shopping out of season

The changes between summer and fall and then winter and spring are some of the funnest times to shop for me.  I love a good bargain, who doesn't?  But sometimes it can be hard to shop the sale rack of summer clothes when you have a sweater on. 

Here are a few thoughts I have on how to capitalize on some of the great bargains floating about this time of year.

  • When buying out of season, pick the trendiest thing, the thing you may not have worn this season.  Let me explain... there is a boutique in Charlotte that has this sale twice a year where they get rid of all their merchandise that didn't sell that season.  I get shoes for about 80% off at this sale.  Last summer I bought a pair of sandals for $20 that were originally about $120.  They were pretty edgy for me.  But when I pulled them out 6 months later to wear them, they were right in style with what people were wearing and I always got so many compliments on them.  So take the risk when shopping for the following season.
  • JRed jeansust because it is on the sale rack doesn't mean you cannot wear it in the fall.  For instance, bright colored jeans are a new trend.  This past spring the colors were bright and springy (like bright blues, reds, and even pastels).  This fall the colors are more subdued (camel, charcoal, and jewel tones).  But red is one of the hottest colors this Fall.  And you could get lucky and find red pair on a sale rack somewhere.



  • Look for the sign that says, "Take an extra % off," that's where the best deals are.  The Old Navy close to my house puts a big sign in their window, that says,"Take an extra 50% off clearance."  I don't even have to go in to find out.  Sometimes department stores (like Belk) will have great sales like this too.
  • DSC_0097 If you want to find the best bargains, you may need to have patience.  One of the easiest ways to save money for my family is to stock my kids' closet for the following season.  For instance, I was in Children's Place the other day and I got this super cute bathing suit and cover up for Abbey for next summer.  I paid $1.99 for each.  I also got flip flops for $.99.  I will love it when I don't have to go spend $15 on a bathing suit for her next summer.  I do this for myself too.  One day this summer I was in Old Navy when I stumbled across this super cute army green cardigan for $3.99.  I had to wait a few months but when I finally got to wear it, I was so proud of my $4 find!
  • There are great deals online too if you don't like to shop.  And now a lot of the larger companies don't charge that much for shipping.  Also, some of the large stores will let you order online and return in the store so you skip the hassle of having to send the merchandise back.  (Old Navy, Children's Place, Gap, and Target let you do this).

Hope you have a great weekend!  Don't forget to enter to win Kerri Weem's new book CLUELESS!

September 27, 2011

Fashion File... Capes aren't just for super heroes

Ok so one of the biggest trends for the fall is the cape and the poncho.  My mom is going to be so happy when she sees this post.  She has a cape that she wore back in the 80s that is "classic" and she has been trying to give it to me for years.  Sorry, mom, I still don't want that cape.

Today I want to challenge you that the trendy cape for this fall does not have to come out of your mom's closet. 

Think this...                                    Not this...
Cape 1                       Cape 2


And when it comes to ponchos, you don't have to cross over the border into Mexico to get yours.

Think this...                                    Not this...
Poncho 1                       Poncho 2

Remember, if you go blousey and flowy on top, go tight underneath and on the bottom.  I love this look from Nordstrom.  These riding pant leggings are awesome (Vince Camuto, $35 on sale!).


I have a fashion file about shopping out of season for next week.  But for the rest of this week, I can't wait to share more from my trip to Haiti, life change stories from Elevation, and most important, my baby Graham turns 4 this Wednesday!

July 19, 2011

Fashion File... You can be comfy!

I am happy to announce some excellent fashion news... you can be comfortable.  The slouchy, flowy look is in.  Here are a few examples and pointers to pulling off this look.

    Create shape.  You can wear something slouchy with leggings, or try wearing a long cami     that gives shape to your hips.  Also look for tops that have tight cuff around the arm.

    If you are going to wear a neutral color (like the grey top below) add color with your jewelry.

    The maxi skirt is a great way to look great and feel comfortable. 

    And don't forget boyfriend jeans.  Pair them with a great pair of jeweled sandals or espadrilles for a         feminine touch.

Here's a few examples.  Aren't you glad to know you no longer have to wear yoga pants to feel comfortable?

Comfy 1Comfy 3 cropped sweater     Comfy 5 Comfy 4 Comfy 6 cardigan


Comfy 7 tank
Comfy 2 skirt
Comfy 8 jeans
Comfy 9 floral

May 31, 2011

Fashion File... How to ruin a good outfit

How to ruin a perfectly good outfit...

  1. Don't iron your clothes.  If you don't have time to iron, you should probably choose something different to wear.  I know that there are those out there that subscribe to the I pull it out of the dryer and hang it up before it wrinkles theory.  And while this usually works, it is not the perfect solution (neither is the Downy spray on wrinkle releaser).  There is no point in spending money on a shirt that you won't bother to iron.  And if you hate ironing so much, you can always budget in dry-cleaning.
  2. Wear clothes that don't fit.  If your clothes are too tight or too loose it can be distracting.  Also if your pants are too long or too short.  Clothes that are too tight, or too loose can actually make you look bigger.
  3. Stop just short of completion.  Sometimes you have to give up a little bit of comfort.  I am sorry to break it to some of you, but your sneakers do not go with everything.  And ladies, if it is chilly outside, a hoodie does not compliment everything in your closet.  And you know that sporty velcro watch that you have had since college, it no longer goes with everything.  

Hope you had a great Memorial Day weekend!  We sure did.  No phone service, no internet, and lots of fun!  Picture post coming this week.  Happy Tuesday!


April 27, 2011

Fashion File... Spring trends for 2011

This spring, if you are feeling the need to add a few new pieces to you wardrobe, here are a some trends you may want to consider... 

High waisted wide leg pants (or jeans).  Don't worry, if you recently bought your first pair of skinny jeans, they are still in style.  I personally love the high waisted pants.  To me, the most flattering jeans are the ones where the rise hits just below you belly button.

Wide leg

Bright colored bangles.  Plastic, metal, or wooden, this is a really cheap way to have fun with your outfit.


White, white, white.  Also, try mixing shades of white, like cream colored trousers with a bright white top. 

White on white

The must have orangy color- I don't know exactly what you call this color, coral, salmon, rust?  Any shade in that family is definitely something you want to add to your closet this Spring.



Comfy clothes.  Don't you love to hear that?  Here is a quote from an online article in Glamour magazine...

Michael Kors said “It’s time to get rid of all those painful heels and too-tight dresses.” Come spring, stores will be chock-full of looser, easy-breezier shapes like long, billowy blouses and swingy dresses. All we can say is Phew!


Military look.  Here are some skinny cargo pants and a great military jacket that has a feminine touch (not to be worn together, you don't want to look like Private Benjamin).

Military 2 Military

And like I said, don't worry, your skinny jeans are still in and so are nude shoes.  Have fun with it.  Happy Spring.

March 18, 2011

Fashion File is back...

It has been a while since I have posted a fashion file.  I am sure being pregnant had something to do with it.  But alas, I am no longer pregnant (Hooray!) and ready for some spring fashion.

Today I want to focus on men's fashion.  Men's fashion is currently making a big shift.  It is going from flashy graphic tees and boot cut jeans to a more plain look with clean lines.  Here are a few examples...

T-Shirts are moving from this to this...

Bad tee 1      Good tee 1


Hoodies/Sweatshirts are moving from this to this...

Bad tee 2      Good tee 2

Jackets are moving from this to this...

Bad tee 3      Good tee 3

Vests are moving from this to this...

Bad tee 4      Good tee 4

Jeans are moving from this to this...

Bad tee 5      Good tee 5

Men, think, "less is more."  Now I am not saying you need to throw out every graphic tee you own and replace them with solid colors.  Nor am I saying that you need to get rid of all your boot cut jeans.  What I am saying is next time you (or ladies, next time you are out shopping for your man) go to buy a pair of jeans, try plain, dark and slim, and, maybe buy a few solid black t-shirts just to add into your rotation.

There you have it men, don't get left behind, it's time for you to start making a change. 

(This post has been approved by the most fashionable man I know, my husband :))