Hello Storyline Sport!

After 15 months in the making Storyline’s Sport Capsule is finally here.This has been one of the longest projects that I have worked on with lots of twists and turns.So it is with great pleasure that I share some of the ideas and concepts that went into creating it.

For those of you who are not familiar with Storyline Collection it is a brand new capsule wardrobing concept that I co-created with my friend Amy Lamphere.Here is the link to the story behind it https://storylinecollection.com/pages/about-storyline

I had already started seeing the lines between our work life,our active life and our hang out life getting blurred where your home becomes your gym or your office and you go to hang out straight from excercising.So I wanted to create something that flowed through out you day.Little did I know that it would become the norm.So the first order of the day was that it had to be versatile,comfortable and look good.

The next thing was that it had to work for a number of activities,gone are that days of tennis whites and golf attire.This collection needed to perform in multiple venues.

Finally it had to breath,move and work.

The first task was developing the right fabric that held you in, allowed you to move and was comfortable to wear all day long.I worked with our mill to create a tech fabric that was wicking(moves moisture away from your skin so that you do not feel all sweaty) and antimicrobial.The problem with tech fabrics is that the often feel slick and slippery which is a feeling I do not love so by adding a very light brushing it allowed it to feel more cozy.

Once I got the fabric right it was all about finding the key pieces that a woman would wear everyday.That started with the creation of the pant.I talked to over a 100 women as to what their perfect pant is or could be.Many of the women had one that they really loved and shared with me but it often had one or two things missing.Pants from Jockey Person to Person,Lululemon,Athleta and the Gap were brought to my attention.I asked them detailed questions and right to figure out what they liked about each pant and incorporate it into my design to create the perfect pant.My key learning was that the pant had to look flawless from both the front and the back and had to be able to work from breakfast to dinner.Most of my contributors did not mind changing their tops throughout the day but really did not want to change their pants.For more go to https://storylinecollection.com/products/perfect-pant

The next key item was the jacket here to there were so many great ideas that were shared with me but finally the most important features were versatility and comfort.Everyone also said pocket’s were really important.Here is a link to the jacket https://storylinecollection.com/products/hero-jacket

My all time favourite clothing item is a t shirt (last count I own about 120 of them).I wear them 24 hours a day 7 days a week so I wanted to create a version for this capsule.This one is in a cotton blend tech fabric it fits close to the body like an athletic one should so if you like it looser go up one size.I really had fun with the graphic here instead of an active graphic I went with drawings of the most opulent items a woman can own,an opera cape and a ballgown skirt.So why not look fabulous when you are on the go.

If you want to add a bit of fashion flair do add one to your wardrobe https://storylinecollection.com/products/fashion-tee

Rounded up the capsule my adding a great cropped legging and a sporty skirt

I hope you enjoy this collection as much as I enjoyed creating it for you.

Ciao for now!

♥ Sunil

 

 

 

How to find your perfect shoes this Spring!

We all dream of finding that perfect shoe,it takes a little bit of effort and energy to find your perfect mate.Here are some tips to finding the shoe that flatters you.It is no secret that the right shoe can make your outfit.

Shoes are the pedestal on which your entire look is built.These simple pointers that will get you on the right road to finding the perfect shoe.

 Finding the right fit at the shoe store

1.Try different sizes in the shoe that you like,sizing is not standard you may be a size 8 in one designer and easily be a size 9 in another designer.Most European designers tend to fit smaller than American designers.If ordering online look at the reviews from other shoppers about sizing.

2.Try to shop in the afternoon or the evening,your feet tend to swell during the day so if you shop first thing in the morning you may get a shoe that will not be as comfortable.Try not to shoe shop on very humid days.

3.Walk on an uncarpeted surface,this will give you a better idea on how the shoe will feel on a pavement or hard surface,shoes feel different on a soft plush carpet.

4.Try on both feet,most of us are slightly larger in one foot than the other so make sure both feet feel fine.Some people will quietly switch one of the shoes for a half size bigger which is not the right thing to do.You are better off getting the size that fits and putting a pad in the foot that is loose.

5.Move,wriggle your toes,flex your ankles and make sure you sit and stand.If any part of the shoe rubs or catches on your foot blisters are on their way.

6.Do not fall for the salesperson line”It will stretch out” or “it will be more comfortable when you break it in”.Chances are if they are not comfortable in the store they are not going to be comfortable at the event you are going to wear them to.

7.Not only does a shoe need to fit,it needs to look like it fits,if your toes dangle out of an open toe shoe or your heels slide of the back the shoe may fit but it does not look like it fits.Also make sure you foot does not break the style lines of the shoe.

Pay attention to details

Heels,A medium height flatters most people(2″ to 3″) make sure that shape of the heel compliments your body shape for example if you are petite a thick chunky heel can look heavy so you want a slimmer  heel.

Vamp,This is the top part of the shoe.The most flattering are low V or U shaped ones that show the right amount of toe cleavage(yes that is a thing) are best with dresses and skirts.Avoid wearing high cut vamps with skirts as they can shorten your legs.Think about what you will be wearing the show with most of the time

Toe Shape,a tapered toe provides the most flattering look but stay away from ones that are too pointy as they can distract from your outfit.If you find tapered toes uncomfortable opt for a more oval toe.

Straps,Pay attention to the position and the width of the straps.A wide strap over the instep will draw attention to your feet,a slim T strap elongates your feet and an ankle strap will draw attention to your ankles.So be aware of this specially if you have thick ankles or heavy calves.

Color,Black  works with most colors except for light ones where nude is a better option.Tans and khakis work best with denim.For evening do match the color of your shoe to your outfit or go with a great metallic.If you wear a lot of solids do go for a bit of print and pattern to pep up your look.Monochromatic your thing,then texture is your friend.

Remember a shoe that matches your skin toe will make your legs look longer and goes with every color. Off whites and soft pinks work better on most people instead of a stark white.Yellow and green are the hardest shoe colors for most people to wear unless you are dark skinned and then nothing is off limits.

Trends for Spring 2020

Here are the top trends for this season,some have been around for awhile and others we are seeing for the first time.I would say if you are only buying one shoe this season make it a Loafer.

This is the most versatile shoe of the season you can wear it with a blazer for work,with jeans as a casual statement and pair it with a dress for evening.This borrowed from the boys trend has been around for for awhile and keeps getting stronger so it is a great shoevestment.

Also called a slide the key feature of this shoe is that it has no back.This makes it a great wear at home,driving and pool shoe.It is usually a flat or has a small kitten heel.It works best in the warmer months when you want to dip your toes in the ocean.

Must have shoe of the Summer and go with a tall one only if you have long legs.They are a little hard to get on and off but they do look fabulous.

A Flatform(yes it is a word) is a flat platform a staple in Japan for centuries it is being reinvented this Spring with A Sporty/Casual edge.If you are a shoenista this is a trend for you.

Why limit wearing Jewelry on you body when you can also wear it on your feet.Think of shoes that double up as necklaces,rings and cuffs.This is the must have shoe trend for evening.

 

 

 

So with a little effort and energy you too can be like Cinderella and find the perfect shoe

“Happy Shoe Shopping”

♥ Sunil

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

 

 

 

 

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.