Style your Travel Story!

Well it is strange to be talking about travelling in the middle of a pandemic but a lot of us are taking road trips right now.Packing for a road trip is a similar to flying in the sense that space is limited unless you own a super large suv for a van.Here are some tips to help you look comfortable and stylish without having to bring your entire closet along.

They key is what you pack,how you pack and what you wear.

A.What to pack.

1-Create a color story for your trip,it should not be more than 2 0r 3 main neutral colors,a pop color and a print.This will ensure that everything goes with each other.Your pop should mostly be in tops,stick to mostly dark colors on the bottom.Your color story should be in harmony with the nature of your trip.This is essentially the first step in creating a travel capsule.

 

2-Pay attention to fabrication,try to pack as many wrinkle resistant fabrics as possible,our jersey is wrinkle proof.Stay away from linens,silks and delicate fabrics like lace.Stick to jersey,tech fabrics and cottons blended with spandex.Choose styles that fold tight and bounce back.

3-Pack your work horse pieces.Everything you choose should have at least an 80 % chance of being used.Black pants,jersey tops and pieces that can recreate a little black dress look all fall into this category.Also pack convertible pieces,these are pieces that can be worn more than one way.Check out my Wide Leg Jersey Pants with Pockets that zip closed.https://storylinecollection.com/products/wide-leg-pant

4-Include your most versatile pieces,especially pieces that are convertible.Also look at how the pieces you pack work together.Layout your outfit ideas and take pictures.My flirty skirt is perfect as it has pockets that zip and keep your belongings secure and when paired with the turnaround top becomes a LBD or can be worn as a top.Here is the link to it https://storylinecollection.com/products/flirty-skirt

5-Pack lots of accessories.Bling gives you major bang for your buck when you are traveling.It is small, but can completely transform a simple dress or outfit,make sure you pack at least 3 statement pieces.It is also important to make sure the pieces go with your color story.Do pack a couple of belts as well.Make sure you pack a mix of casual,sporty and dressy accessories that go together.Scarves are your secret weapon to traveling light and looking fabulous.They are incredibly light and fold into the smallest squares.they can be tucked into any spare corner you have.Make sure you have a solid one,a printed one and an embellished one.They can become belts,hats,shirts or tops in an instant.

6.I say this with much pain!Limit the number of shoes you pack,they weigh the most and take up the most space.Do not pack any uncomfortable shoes.Right now you should pack a heel in a  metallic shade,nude or black for evening,a comfortable casual day shoe and a light athletic waterproof sneaker for walking around or working out .So 3 pairs that is all that goes in your bag.Make sure you pack a  small clutch that goes with your heels for evening.Also pack a lightweight foldable backpack for day trips or for shopping.Here is an example.

B.How to pack.

1-Layout everything on your bed including the outfit you are going to travel in.Count you should have at least 3 tops for every bottom.make sure all the colors sit in harmony.The reason you put your travel outfit on the bed is to make sure it goes with the pieces you pack.Here is how you can add your favourite jeans and cami along with the 5 pieces from the Storyline collection to create 10 looks.This is an example of a capsule that you can put together for a low key outdoor wedding.

 

 

2.Pack using zip lock bags and roll your clothes,squeeze out any excess air.If you travel with a jacket turn it inside out and fold the shoulders in before you roll.

3.Start with you shoes laying them toe to heel at the bottom of your bag.Stuff them with underwear,scarves and belts.Not only does this make efficient use of space,this helps the shoe keep its shape.

4.Resist any last minute urges to pack extras.Your clothing will expand as you wear it and repack and the most important thing is you have to leave room to shop”.

C.What to wear.

1-Comfort and Style is your mantra.Poly/Spandex blends are the best to travel in look for moisture wicking and antimicrobial fabrics as the will keep you cooler and cleaner.Make sure the fabric drapes well and does not cling.Do opt for an elastic waist and pockets are a plus.Keep your outfit monochromatic and in a dark color.Our perfect pant and hero jacket are perfect road trip attire.

2-Make sure you clothing can come on and off in small spaces,just in case you get held up in traffic and need to change in the car.

3-Sunglasses,a practical handbag and a mask is also a must especially if you are making lots of stops.Do have lipstick and sunscreen handy to apply when you get to your destination.

4-Your shoes should come and off easily and be super comfortable.

D.When you get to your destination.

1.Unpack everything and hang what you can.If anything is wrinkled take it to the bathroom and hang it on your door while you shower.Most of the wrinkles should come out.Travel with a small bottle of Downy Wrinkle release,this helps if something gets really wrinkled.Also travel with shout pen or wipes.A portable steamer is also a must have.In a pinch your hotel hair dryer can help get wrinkles out.Spray a little water on the garment and blow on low.Have some Shout wipes or a pen to deal with stains.

2.Make sure you take out all the items from your shoes and lay out your accessories on a table.

3.Plan your outfits for the next few days and hang them in order,review pictures of them on you phone so you do not forget the combinations you came up with.

 

Feeling and looking gorgeous when you roadtrip is as easy as A,B,C and D.

Love, Sunil

 

Dressing for Zoom!

The one thing we have left to dress for right now is our Zoom calls.Dressing for Zoom is slightly different than dressing for a normal work day.

 

What are the differences?

1.Offices tend to be a little more formal,it would be strange to be taking a Zoom call in a tailored suit from home.

2.Your outfit has to multitask as between calls you may be a cook, a teacher ,a referee or even a PE instructor.

3.The focus is on the top half but wearing something on the bottom does help.

4.Your look has to be professional and casual at the same time.

With a little planning and some last minute effort you can look sensational on your call

 

Here is how you do it.
  • Start with a great base outfit that embodies your shape and style.Make sure you Zoom outfit reflects how you normally dress for work
  •  Keep it Simple-no fussy detail or lines
  •  Make it Streamlined-great fabric that does not wrinkle
  • Monochromatic-dark colors in rich tones of blue, red, pink, grey and black look best
  • Comfortable- fits your body, elastic waistbands and styles that drape without cling

 

What to avoid at all costs
  • Busy prints-they can pixelate on camera and are distracting
  • Stiff fabrics-can wrinkle and pull
  • Green and Yellow-unless you have a great tan they can wash you out
  • Ill-fitting and Tight clothing-If you are uncomfortable people can sense it

 

Once you have your outfit on look in the mirror and make sure it meets the following criteria

It should do the following

  • Make you feel Confident
  • Look Beautiful
  • Be Pulled Together
  • Read Chic
  • Flattering to you on camera,do a quick check on your computer or phone

 

Just before your call-set an alarm 5 minutes before start time and do the following

CHANGE OUT OR ADD ONE ITEM-this elevates your all day look a notch

  • Replace a tee shirt with soft dressy top
  • Add a jacket or a cardigan for instant polish

ADD AN ACCESSORYthis gives your look a little more polish,never add sunglasses or hair accessories they can be distracting

  • Put on a flattering necklace
  • Add some interesting earrings
  • Add a scarf close to your neck

TIP-you can balance your face shape and complement it by adding a necklace that hits your flattering neck point here is how.

 

APPLY A TOUCH OF COLOR-it is unrealistic to be walking around you house with a full face of makeup so..

Apply a touch of muted eyeshadow

Add a sharp lipstick in an appropriate color(stay away from red)

Dust your cheeks with a soft blush

or just add a filter to your camera

 

BEFORE YOU HIT CONNECT

Check your background or create one on Zoom

Make sure your lighting is right,it should be to the side of you or in front never behind YOU

Check your microphone

Smile

If you feel like you do not have the right work from home wardrobe do check out my jersey capsule collection at Storyline Collection it is designed to look good on camera and keep you comfortable and stylish.It is a mix and match concept that will give you many Zoom outfits.

https://storylinecollection.com/

 

Happy Zooming

 

 

 

Dress like it is Easter Sunday!

 

There are valuable fashion lessons we can learn from how we dress for Easter Sunday and apply them to our daily life especially right now.

 

1.Putting on your Sunday Best

When it comes to this holiday we go through our closet and pick out an outfit that makes us feel and look our best.This is very important right now because we can easily go into a downward spiral where our entire wardrobe is sweat pants and pj’s.I saw this sign in a store window and it captured the role of clothing in our life,

It is more important that at this time that we do good and it starts with looking good.

 

2.Planning your Outfit

Many of us start a couple of weeks ahead look in our closet and pull a few options together.If something needs to be mended,cleaned or pressed we take care of it.Taking a few minutes the night before or the first thing in the morning can helps us look good and not feel stressed about what to wear.

 

3.Do not be afraid of Color

Nature at this time of year gives us a bounty of color,here are some pictures that I took one Easter I spent in San Diego with my fabulous friend Marijane Relth(Who is never afraid of Color).So take this time of year to add some color to your life and to your wardrobe.

 

4.Embrace Print

It is all around us right now so say come on in.Print is a great way to make you feel good.

 

5.And Finally Dress for Joy…

Easter Sunday is about JOY so make your wardrobe a source of  joy in your life and not a source of stress.I have created a coloring book for you to download and print so you can have some fun with the little fashionistas in your life playing with color and print.It is based on some of my fashion illustrations for my line Storyline Collection.Click on the link below to print it.

Storyline Coloring Book

How to look cute when it is cold outside!

 

Major winter weather is here and some of you have had almost 2 weeks of below freezing temperatures.We are expecting record low temperatures starting today all over the United States and Canada.

Winter is no excuse to look like a Bag lady or a Michelin man just to stay warm.Style never freezes.Staying warm and cozy means piling on the layers but once inside you may encounter near tropical temperatures.Your look has to work both indoors and outside.

Layering adds complexity to a fashionista’s quest to maintain a certain level of chic.Just getting in and out of layers tends to mess up hair,makeup and general decorum.If you are not careful you can end up looking and feeling like a very messy layer cake.

The solution?

Follow these simple 5 steps to stay fashionable,chic and comfortable no matter how low the temperature drops.

1.Choose your base layer wisely.

Most people think no one is going to see it so why bother and then you get to a really hot office or department store and have to strip down.Your first layer should be

  • Soft,absorbent and great feeling against your skin.Cotton,Merino and Cashmere are all great fabrics for a base layer.
  • Have a close to the body fit and can stand alone if needed.Leggings and Tights are are great under pants and skirts.
  • Be in a skin flattering color.
2.Your layers should work together.
  • Your next layer should be easy on,easy off to not destroy hair and make up.Zip and button fronts work really well,as to cowls and deep necklines.
  • Your pieces should all have the same feel or spirit working together and standing alone.Make sure they all have the same mood.
  • Lay out all the pieces on the bed and do a quick check before you put them on.
  • If it is really cold go with a chunky wool sweater as it traps air.
3.Create interesting color stories.
  • Stick to the same color family with one pop color.Start mixing in a Spring piece or two.
  • If you choose to go monochromatic mix up your textures or else your outfit will look flat.Avoid all black if you can.
  • Pay attention to your skin tone,most people get paler in the winter so something that looked great 3 months ago may not work right now.
4.Pay attention to fit.
  • Every layer should be figure flattering,as you go up make sure each layer is slightly bigger.
  • Nothing looks worse than jamming four layers under a jacket or coat that was made for one.The stuffed sausage look is one of the most common layering mistakes.Opt for a wrap coat or a poncho that can take many layers and look good.The good news is technical innovations in fabric and construction have created coats that are super warm and thin at the same time.They are pricey but worth the investment.Look for a more classic style that will not go out of date.
  • Make sure you have mobility especially that you can drive once you get in to a car.
5.Make sure to ice the  layer cake which is your outfit.
  • Your final layer is the most important,Do not fall in to the trap of “I am going to take my coat off when I get there so let me just throw on this old super warm thing”This is  a common mistake.You will run in to several people before you get your coat off it is Murphy’s law.Match your coat to your look;have a great sporty coat for day that goes well with jeans and pants and have a dressier one for night that works with dresses and skirts.For most occasions the ideal top layer is an easy fitting coat that looks stylish no matter how many layers lie beneath.
  • Have fun with accessories,make sure you always have a great scarf and gloves that complement your outfit. A stylish hat will keep you warm and chic.You lose a lot of your body heat from your head so choose one that fits well. Faux fur is a big trend this season and keeps you super warm.Carry a bigger handbag that will allow you to store a layer until you need it.
  • Boots are the way to go for footwear.They really complete a layered look and can be both warm and stylish.Make sure you get a pair with great traction because a fashionista must always be upright.Carry your cute heels in your bigger bag for when you get to your destination.

 

Stay Warm and Stylish

Sunil

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