Throwback Thursday: Packing Tips from a Last-Minute Fashionista

By Erika, Resident Fashionista

Today, I’m headed out of town for a long weekend away so I thought this #tbt post would be perfect!  Yes, I was up at 3am doing my last minute packing per usual.  Now you know why I have to be uber organized!!  Enjoy!

Your Chic is Showing,

Erika's Signature

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We have a long-weekend coming up and lots of us will be going away for some fun (crappy weather along the east coast be darned!). And, lots of us are probably last-minute packers. I am a notorious last-minute packer. I regularly wait until the morning of my flight, train, or bus to put everything into my suitcase and go. It’s so bad that for my Twelve in ’12 one of my goals was to pack at least 2 days ahead of my trips. In 2012 that happened about 50% of the time. In 2013 it’s happened exactly never.

But here’s the thing, just because I do not actually pack until the night before or morning of departure doesn’t mean that I’m throwing any old thing into my suitcase. It’s actually the opposite. I’ve already carefully planned for my trip, so it doesn’t really take much to get everything into the actual suitcase. Once I started to use a few methodical tricks it made packing a breeze – which has only fueled my ability to wait until the very last second (the very last one) to pack.

If you’re a last-minute fashionista like me try using some of the tips below to make packing (whether last-minute or well-planned) a breeze!

1. Plan your outfits ahead of time. Packing at the last-minute isn’t what gets most people into trouble. It’s a lack of a game plan that gets you into trouble. If you know what you’re going to pack it takes very little time to actually fit it into your suitcase.

Sticky Notes

2. To help you plan ahead, use sticky notes. As you can see, I use one sticky note for every day I’ll be away. On the note I’ll write the temperature (only in the spring and fall when it could go from way hot to way chilly in a matter of hours). Then, I’ll write down each component of my outfit for that day. When it comes time for you to pack you can cross it off as you pull it from your closet. You don’t actually have to wear the clothes on the day – the point is to have an outfit (or 2 if need be) for each day.

Sticky Note Close-Up

Yes, I write that neatly. Everyone makes fun of me for it.

Along those lines, make sticky notes for any special items you’ll need as well, like beach wear and accessories and workout gear. And dear lord don’t forget your PJs! I’ve done that a time or two!

3. Pick complementary colors and pieces. I love shoes. And, at one point in my life, I used to have a pair of shoes to match every single outfit I brought on a trip.

Don’t worry – the madness stopped when I went to Europe with an ex-boyfriend and we literally had one suitcase full of nothing but shoes which got delayed for a full day and almost caused me to go into cardiac arrest in Barcelona.

Shoes: Sperry Top Siders

Shoes: Sperry Top Sider

Now, like the smart cookie I am, I pack outfits that work together so that I can reuse the same pieces (i.e. shoes, jackets, hats, scarves, jeans, etc.). For my jaunt to NYC this weekend, I’ve packed my grey Sperry Top Siders and Gold Sandals and picked outfits that can be worn with those shoes. I also stashed a navy military jacket that can be worn with 2-3 outfits. My fave jean jacket matches two outfits. And I’ll recycle my jeans. Every outfit is unique but they’re in the same color family and use common pieces.

The outfits above use the same base color (navy blue) so that the same pieces (a navy military jacket and orange cross body bag) can be utilized with both outfits.  Jeans: Avenue I Shirt: Old Navy I Dress: Joe Fresh I Scarf: J Crew

The outfits above use the same base color (navy blue) so that the same pieces (a navy military jacket and orange cross body bag) can be utilized with both outfits.
Jeans: Avenue I Shirt: Old Navy I Dress: Joe Fresh I Scarf: J Crew

Jacket: Dress Barn

Jacket: Dress Barn

Bag: H&M

Bag: H&M

4. Roll your clothes. This is strictly about getting as much use out of your space as possible. I roll pretty much everything except for jeans. It saves room and keeps things wrinkle free when rolled tightly. That means you’ll have to pack roll friendly clothing. Which should be a part of your strategizing.

Rolled Clothes

Items rolled in my suitcase for maximum storage.

5. Wear your bulkiest items. You’ll notice that I’m bringing a jean jacket with me. But it won’t go in my suitcase. It gets worn on the trip to NY and the trip home. This way, that leaves me extra room in my suitcase for other items. In the winter, wear your heaviest sweater on travel days and layer up.

Jacket: Gap

Jacket: Gap

Jacket: Gap I Dress: Caslon

Jacket: Gap I Dress: Caslon

6. Stuff socks in your shoes and accessories in your hats. Every little bit of space helps. So I try to stuff socks in my shoes and, I almost always travel with a hat. If I’m not wearing said hat, I lay it in the suitcase with the opening facing out. I pack items around it (like t-shirts, PJs, etc.) and then I fill it with things like belts, scarves, etc. This will a) keep your hat from getting crushed and b) keep your hat’s shape. You’ll thank me when you arrive in Panama with your Panama perfectly in tact.

Sneakers: Puma

Sneakers: Puma

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Hat: My own

7. Travel cases are your friend. I keep a travel case stocked with all of my travel sized essentials (lotion, shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, contact solution, etc.). This way, I never have to unpack and repack it. I just store it away until it’s time for my next trip. I also have separate travel cases for hair items, make-up and jewelry. I especially love my Thirty-One jewelry case because I can roll it or lay it flat to fit.

Thirty One Jewelry Case

Jewelry Case: Thirty One

8. Leave room for your dirty stuff. I used to pack an empty bag for my dirty close and then stuff my suitcase to the brim. Dumb idea. That bad is going to be full when you leave. Most of us aren’t folding and rolling our dirty stuff, so at the end of the trip we’re trying to figure out how to stuff a bag of stinky everything into our suitcase. It almost never fits on the way home. Now, I try to pack little to nothing (usually it’s little) in the front zipper pocket of my suitcase and I save this for dirty clothes. I also roll them tightly when I put them in there.

9. If you pack something bulky (think sneakers, boots or jeans) wear them on the way home.  It’s rare that we come home from a trip empty handed. Ok, well, it’s rare that I do. So, I tend to pack bulkier items (like jeans or sneakers) with the plan to wear them on my trip home. You’ll be amazed at the extra space you’ll get my removing one pair of jeans and a bulky item like sneakers or hard-bottomed shoes. Enough room for a couple cute tops and some new sandals!

10. Pack you expandable bag “unexpanded” (is that word?). This is another trick to help you if you come home with more than you left with. Your bag will be fully packed, but you’ll gain some wiggle room when you expand it for the trip home. Win!

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Bonus tip: if you’re flying, keep a stash of travel sized toiletries, an extra pair of “unmentionables,” and a fresh top to change into just in case your suitcases don’t arrive when you do.

It took me exactly ONE (very stinky) time to learn this lesson the hard way. The very, very hard way. In a foreign country. Now you know why I almost went into cardiac arrest.

So, my last minute fashionistas – any more tips to make last minute packing a breeze? And, for my well-planned packing divas, do you have any tips to share?

You know what to do! Weigh in below!

Your Chic is Showing,

YCS Style Diary: Weekend Casual

By Erika, Resident Fashionista

Editor’s Note: Apologies for the indoor photos at my front door.  We shot on a day that was way too snowy/icy to shoot outside!

I live jeans and comfortable tops on the weekends.  I have stated on more than one occasion how much I LOVE a good, comfortable v-neck t-shirt.  And my love for cozy sweatshirts cannot be over stated.  Just because I like to be chic that doesn’t mean I forget about comfort (usually) – especially on the weekends.  The outfit featured today is something you would typically find me rocking on the weekend.  It’s equal parts preppy and cozy and 100% my signature style.

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Glasses: Derek Cardigan (via www.coastal.com) I Scarf + Jacket: Dressbarn I Sweatshirt: Avenue I Jeans: Old Navy

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Ring: H&M I Watch: Avenue I Shoes: Dimmi

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One of my favorite things about this outfit is the shoes.  Not only are they super comfortable (when I bought them I believe the term I used was “stupid comfortable”) but they are also a brand that was founded with the purpose of doing good.  100% good, in fact.  Dimmi was a shoe line created by the Consolidated Shoe Co. in memory of Richard A. Carrington, who ran the family business.  He died of ALS and the company decided in 2011 to create the Dimmi shoe with the sole (no pun intended) purpose of giving away 100% of wholesale profits to medical research.  I always love when you can look good and do good!

You can learn more and score your own pair of Dimmis at www.dimmi.com.

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I love layering cozy pieces together in the fall/winter.  The great thing about the blazer featured in this outfit is that it is made of sweatshirt material – so I’m literally piling cozy layer on top of cozy layer.

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So, my loves, what are you guys rocking on the weekends?  And are you a comfy cozy kind of person or do you keep it buttoned up on weekends too?

You know the deal – weigh in below!

Your Chic is Showing,

Erika's Signature

Photo credit: Sara Alloy (YCS Sara)

Packing Tips (from a Last Minute Fashionista)

By Erika, Resident Fashionista

104_0047

We have a long-weekend coming up and lots of us will be going away for some fun (crappy weather along the east coast be darned!).  And, lots of us are probably last-minute packers.  I am a notorious last-minute packer.  I regularly wait until the morning of my flight, train, or bus to put everything into my suitcase and go.  It’s so bad that for my Twelve in ’12 one of my goals was to pack at least 2 days ahead of my trips.  In 2012 that happened about 50% of the time.  In 2013 it’s happened exactly never.

But here’s the thing, just because I do not actually pack until the night before or morning of departure doesn’t mean that I’m throwing any old thing into my suitcase.  It’s actually the opposite.  I’ve already carefully planned for my trip, so it doesn’t really take much to get everything into the actual suitcase.  Once I started to use a few methodical tricks it made packing a breeze – which has only fueled my ability to wait until the very last second (the very last one) to pack.

If you’re a last-minute fashionista like me try using some of the tips below to make packing (whether last-minute or well-planned) a breeze!

1. Plan your outfits ahead of time.  Packing at the last-minute isn’t what gets most people into trouble.  It’s a lack of a game plan that gets you into trouble.  If you know what you’re going to pack it takes very little time to actually fit it into your suitcase.

Sticky Notes

2.  To help you plan ahead, use sticky notes.  As you can see, I use one sticky note for every day I’ll be away.  On the note I’ll write the temperature (only in the spring and fall when it could go from way hot to way chilly in a matter of hours).  Then, I’ll write down each component of my outfit for that day.  When it comes time for you to pack you can cross it off as you pull it from your closet.  You don’t actually have to wear the clothes on the day – the point is to have an outfit (or 2 if need be) for each day.

Sticky Note Close-Up

Yes, I write that neatly. Everyone makes fun of me for it.

Along those lines, make sticky notes for any special items you’ll need as well, like beach wear and accessories and workout gear.  And dear lord don’t forget your PJs!  I’ve done that a time or two!

3.  Pick complementary colors and pieces.  I love shoes.  And, at one point in my life, I used to have a pair of shoes to match every single outfit I brought on a trip.

Don’t worry – the madness stopped when I went to Europe with an ex-boyfriend and we literally had one suitcase full of nothing but shoes which got delayed for a full day and almost caused me to go into cardiac arrest in Barcelona. 

Shoes: Sperry Top Siders

Shoes: Sperry Top Sider

Now, like the smart cookie I am, I pack outfits that work together so that I can reuse the same pieces (i.e. shoes, jackets, hats, scarves, jeans, etc.).   For my jaunt to NYC this weekend, I’ve packed my grey Sperry Top Siders and Gold Sandals and picked outfits that can be worn with those shoes.  I also stashed a navy military jacket that can be worn with 2-3 outfits.  My fave jean jacket matches two outfits.  And I’ll recycle my jeans.  Every outfit is unique but they’re in the same color family and use common pieces.

The outfits above use the same base color (navy blue) so that the same pieces (a navy military jacket and orange cross body bag) can be utilized with both outfits.  Jeans: Avenue I Shirt: Old Navy I Dress: Joe Fresh I Scarf: J Crew

The outfits above use the same base color (navy blue) so that the same pieces (a navy military jacket and orange cross body bag) can be utilized with both outfits.
Jeans: Avenue I Shirt: Old Navy I Dress: Joe Fresh I Scarf: J Crew

Jacket: Dress Barn

Jacket: Dress Barn

Bag: H&M

Bag: H&M

4.  Roll your clothes.  This is strictly about getting as much use out of your space as possible.  I roll pretty much everything except for jeans.  It saves room and keeps things wrinkle free when rolled tightly. That means you’ll have to pack roll friendly clothing.  Which should be a part of your strategizing.

Rolled Clothes

Items rolled in my suitcase for maximum storage.

5.  Wear your bulkiest items.  You’ll notice that I’m bringing a jean jacket with me.  But it won’t go in my suitcase.  It gets worn on the trip to NY and the trip home.  This way, that leaves me extra room in my suitcase for other items.  In the winter, wear your heaviest sweater on travel days and layer up.

Jacket: Gap

Jacket: Gap

Jacket: Gap I Dress: Caslon

Jacket: Gap I Dress: Caslon

6.  Stuff socks in your shoes and accessories in your hats.  Every little bit of space helps.  So I try to stuff socks in my shoes and, I almost always travel with a hat.  If I’m not wearing said hat, I lay it in the suitcase with the opening facing out.  I pack items around it (like t-shirts, PJs, etc.) and then I fill it with things like belts, scarves, etc.  This will a) keep your hat from getting crushed and b) keep your hat’s shape.  You’ll thank me when you arrive in Panama with your Panama perfectly in tact.

Sneakers: Puma

Sneakers: Puma

2013_05_24_07_33_08_603

Hat: My own

7.  Travel cases are your friend.  I keep a travel case stocked with all of my travel sized essentials (lotion, shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, contact solution, etc.).  This way, I never have to unpack and repack it.  I just store it away until it’s time for my next trip.  I also have separate travel cases for hair items, make-up and jewelry.  I especially love my Thirty-One jewelry case because I can roll it or lay it flat to fit.

Thirty One Jewelry Case

Jewelry Case: Thirty One

8.  Leave room for your dirty stuff.  I used to pack an empty bag for my dirty close and then stuff my suitcase to the brim.  Dumb idea.  That bad is going to be full when you leave.  Most of us aren’t folding and rolling our dirty stuff, so at the end of the trip we’re trying to figure out how to stuff a bag of stinky everything into our suitcase.  It almost never fits on the way home.  Now, I try to pack little to nothing (usually it’s little) in the front zipper pocket of my suitcase and I save this for dirty clothes.  I also roll them tightly when I put them in there.

9.  If you pack something bulky (think sneakers, boots or jeans) wear them on the way home.  It’s rare that we come home from a trip empty handed.  Ok, well, it’s rare that I do.  So, I tend to pack bulkier items (like jeans or sneakers) with the plan to wear them on my trip home.  You’ll be amazed at the extra space you’ll get my removing one pair of jeans and a bulky item like sneakers or hard-bottomed shoes.  Enough room for a couple cute tops and some new sandals!

10.  Pack you expandable bag “unexpanded” (is that word?).  This is another trick to help you if you come home with more than you left with.  Your bag will be fully packed, but you’ll gain some wiggle room when you expand it for the trip home.  Win!

2013_05_24_07_25_31_400

Bonus tip: if you’re flying, keep a stash of travel sized toiletries, an extra pair of “unmentionables,” and a fresh top to change into just in case your suitcases don’t arrive when you do. 

It took me exactly ONE (very stinky) time to learn this lesson the hard way.  The very, very hard way.  In a foreign country. Now you know why I almost went into cardiac arrest. 

So, my last minute fashionistas – any more tips to make last minute packing a breeze?  And, for my well-planned packing divas, do you have any tips to share?

You know what to do!  Weigh in below!

Your Chic is Showing,

Weekend Essentials

If you guys are anything like me, you often find yourself in “Go, Go, Go!” mode Monday through Friday.  TGIF always means so much to me by the time Friday finally makes its way around again!  While some weekends are more jam-packed than others, I try my best to make sure that I take the time to “relax, relate, release” and recharge my batteries for the upcoming week.  I would never make it through the weekend without the following chic essentials:

Weekend Essentials - Numbered

1.  Jeans – During the work week I live in Corporate America and long for the days where I own my own business and can wear jeans whenever I feel like.  Until then, I have two and a half days each week to rock out in my favorite jeans.  Unless I have somewhere special to be, when it’s cold (or cool, or rainy, or whatever) you’ll likely find me rocking my jeans on the weekend.  Lately, I’ve been wearing a lot of colored and patterned jeans.  I just love a good pair of jeans – boot cut, skinny, wide leg, trouser – I love them all! (Jeans Pictured: Avenue & Old Navy)

2. T-shirts – I’ve done a whole series on how to rock a white tee, so clearly, I’m a fan of a good t-shirt.  I’ve tried a billion brands (Gap, J Crew, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, etc.) and I must say that I think, hands down, Old Navy and Joe Fresh have the most comfortable t-shirts around.  I have a closet full in all sorts of colors.  But, if you catch me rocking a tee over the weekend, it’s most likely to be white because they’re so versatile.  No longer does wearing a t-shirt have to be sloppy.  I rock mine in a variety of ways, none of which I would define as sloppy.

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3. My swimsuit – If you follow YCS on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest then you know I’ve been working out something serious over the past few months.  Most Saturday mornings you can find me in a pool doing water aerobics or swimming laps.  My swim suit is made for lap swimming and provides tons of support.  I would rock this at the beach, but at the gym, I’m one stylish girl!

4. Scented Candles – When I go out out (you know to the club, lounge, etc.) I usually only do it on Saturday (I’m usually too tired on Friday to be much fun, ha ha).  On Friday night you can most definitely find me burning candles around the house and setting a relaxing atmosphere.

5. 8 oz Bottled Waters – At work, it’s really easy for me to make sure I drink the proper amount of water each day (it is recommended that you drink 1/2 your weight in ounces).  I have two 16 oz. cups that I am constantly refilling.  On the weekends, for whatever reason, I just don’t remember.  So, I started to keep these mini bottles everywhere. In my purse, in the fridge, in the car, on my nightstand.  Knocking back 8oz. is nothing and these fit so perfectly into my weekend totes!

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6. Ballet Flats – Yes, I LOVE my heels.  Like, all the way love them.  However, I schlep around in high heels all week long.  So, on the weekend, I enjoy walking around in my ballet flats.  They’re cute, comfortable and give my feet a break from the daily grind.  This pair from H&M is one of my faves.

7. Nook Color, Magazines & Books – I lumped these together because they’re all in the same family.  I love reading and try to use some time on the weekends to catch-up on my books and magazines.  My Nook Color is one of my favorite purchases.  I can get magazines, the news, books, music, movies, games, and the internet all on that little device.  It’s very similar to an iPad without the price. However, I still love the feeling of a book or magazine in my hand.  Which is why my house is filled to the brim with those too!

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8. An empty phone charger – It is not necessary for me to be plugged in 24/7.  Often, I’ll turn my phone off for hours at a time on weekends.  I’ll also stay away from the computer and TV.  Sometimes, when I’m doing my housework or reading it’s just me and the soothing sounds of the rain or ocean coming from my white noise device.

9. Clarisonic – I actually use my Clarisonic every other day.  But on weekends I give my skin a deep cleansing and mask treatment.  Using my clarisonic and skin care routine just makes my skin glow that much more.

10. Sunglasses – Whether I’m hiding from the sun while nursing a wicked hangover or hiding from the paparazzi (in my head), I can’t leave home without my sunglasses.  The right shades will instantly up the cool factor on any outfit.  I never leave home with out my fave pair – or five!

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What are your weekend essentials?  Anything you absolutely cannot live without?  We want to know!  I’m thinking, maybe, a weekend essentials giveaway might be in order.  So tell us your favorite things in case we decide to include them!

Your Chic is Showing,

With Love, Erika

What to Wear: for Valentine’s Day

February 14th is fast approaching and whether you’re single or taken people are always checking for what you’re wearing (even as an adult, I find myself taking inventory of who is rocking red).  It doesn’t matter if you’re having date night with your sweetie, drinks with your girls, treats with your kids, or movie night with yourself – you still need to look fabulous.  Below are some looks cultivated from my favorite websites that will meet all of your Valentine’s Day needs.

Date Night

For date night with your boo, I would suggest going super romantic or super sexy.  Either way, you couldn’t go wrong with one of these dresses below.

Michael by Michael Kors Faux Wrap Dress (Red)

Mesmerize Me Lace Dress from Fashion to Figure  (comes in plus sizes!)

Alfani Color Blocked Sheath Dress from Macys

Alfani Color Blocked Sheath Dress at Macys (Photo Credit: http://www.macys.com)

BCBGeneration 3-quarter Sleeve Dress from Macys (super sexy mini with a back cut-out!)

Drinks with the Girls

Celebrating V-Day with the girls?  Keep things light and airy and super flirty.  It’s likely you’ll find a cutie to pay for your drinks with these pieces.

Pleated Faux Leather Skirt by Guess (a must-have in my opinion!)

Faux leather pleated skirt by Guess. (Photo Credit: Polyvore)

ASOS Curve Peg Pants (from the ASOS plus line)

Contrast Trim Hi-Low Blouse from Dress Barn (currently in my closet)

Dress Barn contrast trip hi-low top.

Dress Barn contrast trim hi-low top.

Ethnic Print Shirt from Zara

Lace Blouse with Faux Leather Piping from Zara

Baking Cookies with the Kiddies.  Or the nieces and nephews.  Or your favorite little people.

These pieces are super comfortable and in all your favorite Valentine’s Day colors.

Ultra Skinny Printed Pants by Gap

Ultra Skinny Printed Pants by Gap (Photo Credit: http://www.gap.com)

Rockstar Demi-Boot Jeans by Old Navy

Cashmere Crew Neck Sweater from Joe Fresh

Vintage Cotton Stripe Tee from J. Crew (yes please! In every color!)

Movie Night at Home

Sometimes, the best way to spend V-Day is at home, bundled on the couch with popcorn, ice cream (but not too much!), and vino.  These clothes will be a comfy addition to the perfect night in!

Kiss Love Dream Sleep Shirt from Avenue (plus size alert!)

The Afterhours Pajamas by Victoria’s Secret

Grace Robe by La Perla

Polka Dot Knit Chemise from Cacique

Black and pink polka dot chemise by Cacique (Photo Credit: Lane Bryant)

What will you be wearing this Valentine’s Day?  My outfit remains to be seen, but I’ll be sure to share a pic.

Your Chic is Showing,

With Love, Erika

Casual Night Out in a White T-Shirt

Signature Style Series: Going Out in the White T-Shirt

“I’ve always thought of the t-shirt as the Alpha and Omega of the fashion alphabet.” – Giorgio Armani

Lounging in a White Tee

Blazer: Old Navy, T-Shirt: Zazzle (custom); Pants: Avenue; Shoes: Elie Tahari; Belt: Dress Barn

We’ve taken the white tee from the office to the weekend, but we’ve got one more place to take it . . . out on the town.  I know that a white t-shirt is probably the last thing you think is versatile enough to hit the club or grab after work drinks but it is.  If you’re going to wear it to a lounge or club be sure to dress everything else up.  Below, I’ve added tons of layered necklaces with a shrunken blazer and leggings.  Sky high heels and a bright clutch complete the look.

A Night on the Town in a White T-Shirt

Blazer: Dress Barn; Leggings: Lane Bryant; Bag, Necklaces and ring: my own; Shoes: Bamboo

For drinks, you can keep it more casual but tuck the shirt in to look more polished.  Below, I’m rocking a signature “Your Chic is Showing” tee (available to order soon!) with a blazer and my fave red cropped pants.  Polished color clocked heels, a vintage clutch and some sleek jewelry make this outfit complete.

Casual Night Out in a White T-Shirt

Bag: Vintage; Ring: H&M; Bracelets: Avenue; Watch: Charming Charlies

Have you ever considered wearing a white tee for a night out on the town?  If so, send in pics!  If not, give it a shot and tell us how it worked out!

Your Chic is Showing,

Signature Style Series: The White T-Shirt with a Suit

“I’ve always thought of the t-shirt as the Alpha and Omega of the fashion alphabet.” – Giorgio Armani

You may not think of a white t-shirt (especially one as casual as the Old Navy Vintage-Style tee used for this series) as something that can be worn with business attire or under a suit. However, I find myself wearing a white t-shirt to the office at least once a week. Just because it is a t-shirt does not mean it is not office appropriate. If dressed-up and styled appropriately a white t-shirt can easily be worn dressed-up.

Look 1:Business Casual Cropped Suit

Suit 1

Blazer and T-shirt: Old Navy; Cropped Pants: Dress Barn; Shoes: Elie Tahari

The white t-shirt is paired with a pair of cropped pants and a blazer with rolled sleeves.

Suit 1 + Scarf

Scarf: H&M (purchased in London); Earrings: My own

It is accessorized with a printed scarf and black and gold jewelry. The beautiful pattern on the scarf means that the rest of the ensemble and accessories can remain relatively simple.

Suit 1 + Accessories

Watch: Charming Charlies; Ring: H&M; Bracelets: Avenue; Scarf: H&M (purchased in London)

Look 2: Formal Business Pant Suit

Suit 2

Jacket and Pants: Worthington; T-Shirt: Old Navy; Shoes: Nine West; Bag: La Bagagerie

This time around, the white t-shirt is accessorized with a traditional black pant-suit and Nine West snake skin (faux) heels.

Suit 2 + Accessories

Necklace: Chanel; Earrings: my own; Ring: H&M

A simple pearl necklace and earrings complete this simple, classic look.

How do you wear your white t-shirts with a suit, or dressed-up in general? Please share!

Your Chic is Showing,

Photo credits: CoraStar Productions

Signature Style Series: The White T-Shirt

“I’ve always thought of the t-shirt as the Alpha and Omega of the fashion alphabet.” – Giorgio Armani

Now that you’ve discovered your signature style, it’s time that we build a wardrobe with style essentials and basics. It really does not take much to build a solid foundation for your wardrobe – just a few key pieces and essentials. Over the next few weeks, we’ll cover one of those essential wardrobe building blocks – the white t-shirt.

Now, this is not your boyfriend or favorite rapper’s white t-shirt. It is not baggy (no t-skirts) nor ill-fitting (whether too loose or too tight). It is a simple, well-fitted t-shirt. The style (i.e. scoop neck, v-neck, etc.) and material (cotton, poly-blend, organic cotton, etc.) are up to you. The focus is on fit. Your t-shirt could come from Target or Armani Exchange. It doesn’t matter. The point is that you need a good, solid, white t-shirt as a part of your wardrobe foundation.

The Shirt: For this series, I chose an inexpensive t-shirt from Old Navy (Women’s Vintage-Style V-Neck T-Shirt, $9.50) to show that you do not have to spend a million dollars to have a solid foundation. The t-shirt is a classic V-neck style short-sleeved shirt made of a super soft and lightweight jersey knit. It hits at the hip and has a relaxed fit which makes it appropriate whether dressed up or dressed down.

Old Navy Women's Vintage-Style V-Neck T-Shirt in White

Old Navy Women’s Vintage-Style V-Neck T-Shirt in White

The white t-shirt is one of the most versatile pieces any woman can own and this series will focus on sharing fun and easy was to wear it – with a suit, with jeans, to go out. And, as with all of the styling ideas here on Your Chic is Showing – I’m dying to have you send in pics of how you style your white t-shirts. So please, send in photos of yourselves rocking a white t-shirt in your favorite style.

Without further adieu, let the fun begin!

Your Chic is Showing,

Photo credits: CoraStar Productions

What to Wear: Lunch Date

“Over the years I have learned that what is important in a dress is the woman who is wearing it.” – Yves Saint Laurent

A date with a new guy can be intimidating. We want every detail of our look to be perfect. From our hair, to our make-up, to of course, our outfit! And, when we have a Friday night or all day Saturday to pull it together (or plan it a week in advance like I do!), we women usually get it right.

But, the lunch date? Totally different ball game. Now, you’ve got to pull together an outfit that is a) work appropriate, b) swoon worthy and c) not trying too hard (because, the man needs to know we’re, well, working hard, duh!). Afterall, when you’re already nervous about a date and juggling your daily work responsibilities, the last thing you should worry about is what you’re wearing. We’ve got you covered on that front!

Below are three easy lunch date looks that a woman can try. The first two looks are almost identically (except for the purses and dress color) and are appropriate for a woman who works in a conservative business environment or a business casual environment. And, they’re consistently my “go to” lunch date outfits. The third outfit is appropriate for a woman who works in a more casual environment. All three outfits are very simple to recreate.

one. conservative.

Conservative business attire that can be worn on lunch date.

Dress: Old Navy; Belt: Target; Shoes: BCBG Girls; Bag: JB Martin Boston Bag; Bangles: Avenue; Ring: H&M; Earrings: Kohls; Necklace (from a shirt): Michael Kors

two. business casual.

Teal dress that can be worn on a lunch date.

Dress: Old Navy; Belt: Target; Shoes: BCBG Girls; Bag: Bueno; Bangles: Avenue; Ring: H&M; Earrings: Kohls; Necklace (from a shirt): Michael Kors

three. casual.

Lunch date outfit that can be worn in a casual work environement.

Blazer: Dress Barn; T-Shirt: Cloud Nine; Jeans (Boot Cut): Lane Bryant; Shoes: Guillemna, Aldo; Bag: Gift; Necklaces: Chanel, My Own; Ring; H

What do you think? Would you rock these outfits on a lunch date? What are your lunch date go to outfits? Can’t wait to see and hear what you share!

Your Chic is Showing,

Photo credits: CoraStar Productions

Where to Shop:

Old Navy: www.oldnavy.com

Target: www.target.com

BCBG Girl: www.bcbg.com

H&M: www.hm.com/us

Dress Barn: www.dressbarn.com

Lane Bryant: www.lanebryant.com

Aldo: www.aldo.com

Chanel: www.chanel.com

Avenue: www.avenue.com

Kohls: www.kohls.com & Kohls Jewelry: https://yourchicisshowing.com/2012/06/04/what-to-wear-lunch-date/