The Perfect Fall Wardrobe in 5 Easy Steps!

As we head to the Fall and dream about having that perfect wardrobe.The one that is fully integrated  and well edited that epitomizes your style and fully covers all your needs yet manages to look fresh and exciting every time you step out.

Some swear it is just an urban myth and is impossible but with these 5 easy steps you can attain  wardrobe nirvana.The biggest mistake people make is buying one offs,a cute top or a great outfit or some divine shoes and when you bring it home and add it to your closet it just does not give you a cohesive wardrobe.My definition of a dream wardrobe is one that you can get dressed completely in the dark and when you step out into the light you look like a million bucks.

This is the perfect time to do a little planning,Fall is not quite here but we pretty much know what is coming in the next two weeks.Here is what you need to do.

Step 1-Be honest about your body and lifestyle.

As we age our body shape often changes so does it if you have lost or gained more that 15 pounds your shape changes.It is important to dress the body you have,not the body you have or the body you plan to have.Take a few minutes to measure yourself and confirm your body type.Here is a cheat sheet to help you.

Be honest about your lifestyle,if you work from home buying a whole lot of dresses and suits is not going to help.Take stock of what you wear 80% of the time.Do not buy something because you friend is wearing it and loves it.

Step 2-Stick to a Color Story

For the majority of what you wear stick to 4 complimentary shades and work with them.This allows for optimal mixing and matching.For the Fall I like mixing two dark tones with a mid tone and an accent.If you are a print person do add one great print.You can have a color story for work and another for casual if you like.Here are some on trend color stories for Fall 2019.

Step 3- Go for Quality and Fit over Quantity

As Americans we love variety but here is where we should take a lesson from our European sisters.French women tend to have less but it fits them perfectly and is the very best quality they can afford.This is very important when it comes to Outerwear,Bags and Shoes.Quality pieces tend to last longer so in the long run they actually cost less.

Step 4-Create your Core or Foundation

Just like a great house begins with a foundation your wardrobe is built on core pieces or essentials.These are the work horses of you wardrobe that multi task in many outfits.Depending on your lifestyle you may have different core pieces.Make a list of what your items are and make sure you have them,that they fit and are in good condition.Create a checklist and if you do not have it make sure you acquire these pieces first.Here is an example for a professional who works in a casual office.

You should add some on trend fashion tops to balance out your selection.The general rule is that you should have 3 top options for every bottom.Make sure these pieces flatter you really well,if not go out and get a piece that does,here are some guidelines.

Step 5-Work with your Budget

The best way to do it is to follow the 80/20 Rule. 80% of your funds go to carefully planned items to fill your wardrobe gaps.The balance 20% goes towards impulse buys,whims and sales.Here are 10 wardrobe basics that are always in style and give you the best bang for your buck.

So with these five simple steps,a little planning and some smart shopping with a dose of self control you can have an amazing wardrobe.

Love,Sunil

 

 

 

 

How to do denim right!

August is usually the month when the fashion industry from magazines to stores focus on denim.Jeans are a great way to transition from Summer to Fall and a great pair is the building block to a versatile wardrobe. It is important to update your jeans to flatter your figure and reflect current trends.I have been designing denim for almost 25 years and here are the most frequent questions I get.I have answered the questions briefly so you get the information you need and do not have to spend hours researching.

1.My Workplace now allows me to wear Jeans to work. What are the rules to follow?

  •  Go for a Dark Wash with Minimal Decoration or a Crisp White
  • Dress up with Dressy Tops,  Light Sweaters & Jackets
  • Add Elegant Accessories
  • Keep it Smart with a Casual Vibe
  • Pick the Right Shoes
  • Here are some images of denim being done right for work at this time of year

2.With so many different types of denim, what should I look for in a Pair of Jeans that will be Versatile?
  • Stretch – Comfort & Fit(Look for a 4 way stretch)
  • Poly Cotton or Cotton Spandex Blend – Easy Care and shape retention
  • Great Hand with a Clean Wash
  • Mid Weight (8 ozs to 10 ozs) – Great all Year durability
  • Classic Style
3.I have heard so much about having the Right Fitting Jeans in order for them to be Flattering. What should I be looking for when I try a pair on?
  • Contoured Waistband
  • Waist – Not too Tight you should be comfortably insert two fingers into the waistband
  • Rise – 1 to 3 inches below your Belly Button
  • No Whiskers in Front
  • Fitted through the Thigh and Knee
  • Flared or Straight depending on your Body Shape and preference
  • Check out you Rear View should be snug but not too tight
  • The side seam should be straight( if it is distorted your jeans are too tight)
4.What is the Correct Length for my Jeans?
  • Front – Slight Break not too much fabric
  • Flats in the back -Touch the Floor
  • Heels in the back -1/4 inch off the Floor
  • Better to have separate pairs to wear with heels and flats,but an H on the label for the ones that are hemmed for heels
5.In order to get the Best Fit from my Jeans what should I wear under them?

Magic begins with the Right Foundation,make sure your underwear is:

  • Not creating any Visible Panty Lines
  • Not too Tight
  •  Has a Lower Rise than your Jeans
  • Nude in color is best specially under white jeans
  • Tummy and Thigh control if your jeans are super skinny
6.What is the most flattering jeans for my body shape?
  • Pear Body Shapes: Bootleg with dark wash,medium rise
  • Apple Body Shapes: Straight Legs that is cropped with a higher waist
  • Strawberry Body shape:Wide leg or flare is a lighter wash,decorated below the knee
  • Hourglass Body shape:All leg shapes and rises work but avoid boyfriend jeans
  • Pencil Body shape:longer length straight or flared legs,slightly higher rise
  • See cheatsheet for other flattering details

6.What should I be looking for right now?
  • The Good news is that  Skinny,Flared,Baggy and Straight Legs are in this season
  • We are seeing a wide variety washes from super light to deep darks,go with a light wash light now and darker towards winter
  • The high waist straight leg jean is a must have right now so if you do not have one do get it
  • Pintucks and Ribbon are big details and the do flatter and lengthen your legs so do pick up a pair
  • Embroidery is a must have and really adds a touch of fun to your jean wardrobe.
  • Hem details are a great way to bring some drama when you wear jeans in the evening or on the red carpet

So these are the top seven issues that come up in most minds when they shop for denim.Take your time to find the right pair for you.It is worth the effort.I say have 3 pairs,a great pair that you can wear to work,a super comfortable and cute pair for weekends and a dressy pair for evening.

 

 

 

 

Scarves and the Summer-Seen all over NYC

Just like Sex and the City,Scarves and Summer is an integral part of the New York style scene. Make them a key part of your Summer Style.They are extremely versatile and can be used as a headwrap, a top, a skirt or even a dress

The windows at Bergdorf Goodman featured a stunning array of Hermes scarves worn in all kinds of ways.I used this as inspiration to create 6 different ways you can transform a scarf in a quick jiffy.

SCARF

Remember your scarf is your Lifesaver and can elevate a simple outfit in an instant.Keep a couple handy in your bag at all times.

Here are some options with easy instructions. I have taken some of the guesswork out for you.

Summer Scarves

Choose one or two in a light weight cotton or poly chiffon,usually a 36″ square works really well.Since this summer is about print matching you can use two contrasting scarves to create a wow look.

Have a Stylish Summer
♥ Sunil

 

How to Mix Prints!

One of Summer’s Biggest Trends is to mix your prints in the same outfit.Now this is not everyone’s cup of tea for some of us just one print is way too much but if you want to push yourself,here are 5 simple ways to pull it off.

Mix different prints in Black and White.Stripes,Dots,Checks or Floral in monochromatic hues are easy to mix and look very chic.This is flattering and can be used to enhance your body type.If you are a Pear shape you want to wear a Black background on the bottom and a White background on the top.If you are a Strawberry you want to do the opposite.Then mix in a bold red,cobalt or yellow bag and shoe and you have this seasons “Wow”look.

Stripes and Dots are the neutrals of the print world and are easy to mix in with the busiest floral prints.Pair with a solid shoe or an animal print shoe to finish your look.

Having a common color in each print helps to pull them together creating a unified story.make sure you mix the scales and do not choose more than 3 different prints,2 is ideal.

Keeping to the same theme like geometrics,florals or abstracts and then mixing the colors and scales provides a visual anchor and prevents your outfit from going off the rails.Anchor it with a solid neutral shoe and bag.

Leave it to the experts and buy a dress or a jumpsuit already print mixed for you.Several designers are offering you this option at every price point.I love the ones from Kate Spade,Free People,ASOS and Zara.

So do step out of your comfort zone this season and have some fun shaking up your summer looks.

Fabulous 4th of July Style!

This week kicks off all the fabulous events that celebrate Independence day.This is the one time a year that I get a little carried away and indulge in some red,white and blue mania.Being an immigrant whose journey to citizenship was pretty arduous,I never take this day for granted.I am very proud to call this country my home and celebrate 31 years in New York City in August.I just found the coolest flag tee at J Crew that I am so excited to debut on Thursday.As you all know we do have the most insane fireworks display in NYC.

It is such a fine line between creating a fabulous fashion forward patriotic look or ending up with something that looks like it escaped from a parade.If you want to rock some over the top patriotic style by all means go for it.This is one occasion that you can get away with it.

For most of us it is about a balance between showing off our patriotism and being stylish.To find the right balance I looked to the stars of movies and music for inspiration.

So if you are in the mood for  displaying some all out 4th of July madness or just a subtle hint of your patriotic spirit.Here are 5 tips to do it right.

White is such a clean refreshing palette to base you outfit on.It is cool crisp and comfortable.Finish it off with a touch of red and blue.It is one of the key colors for Summer 2019 and can be worn over and over again.

Picking one motif and making it your central theme,creates a look that is sophisticated and polished,take a cue from these celebrities and create just one focal point to your outfit.Mix this with one of two classic american fabrics,chambray or denim.

Instead of just draping yourself in a flag which concerns some people as being too much,designers have created artistic interpretations that capture the spirit of it while respecting it.Look for something that is more interesting and flattering.Tie dye versions are the must have.

There are so many fabulous accessories out there that feature the flag.Go for a great head to toe solid white,red or blue outfit and then punch it with a flag bag or shoe.Subtle but very effective in creating a stylish outfit.I usually tend to take this route myself.There are so any fantastic options.

With all the creativity that is going on with nails,this is the place to go crazy.So get some patriotic nail art and pair with a crisp white shirt and a great pair of jeans to get the ultimate understated wow outfit.

The great news is all of these tips work for the men in your life as well maybe not so much tip number 5 but I know a few rock star dudes that can make it work.

But the main thing to remember is to celebrate what an amazing country we are because it is our diversity that makes us so great.

Happy Independence Day

♥ Sunil