InFashion

Fashion Archives

Driehaus Awards for Fashion Excellence

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It is indeed rare that I have ever been to an event where the press is delegated to a dark corner away from the runway. It seems the front seats were reserved mostly for men who have been major donors to the event. And it was another exciting student fashion runway event, choreographed by my talented friend, Tracey Tarrantino of Zzazz Productions, and presented by the charming Linda Yu, ABC7.  It was a celebration of  the 10th yr anniversary for the best of the students in fashion from 5 schools, with proceeds from the evening going to Chicago Fashion Incubator and other charities. The 2011 student winner went to Que Shebley. Congrats!!

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Headbands-New York Style

As young girls we grow up wearing headbands, why should we stop? Headbands are not just for elementry school girls anymore, but for "grown ups" too. A headband can potentially put the exclamation point on your outfit, creating a playful and girlish air.  For a city that loves to be extravagant, many New York women are spiffing up their outfits with a complementary headband.

Headbands are in style! Anywhere from the classic headband like Leighton Meester in Gossip Girl to the hippy headband Micsha Barton wears. Classic headbands are plain, patterned or colorful and can be accented with a jewel or bow. The hippy headbands are those worn around the middle of the forehead. However, the most popular headband I've seen in NYC is the sparkly braided band like Natiale Portman wears. Whatever you headband style is, you are not too old to wear it!


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Street Fashion: Is 2 always Better than 1?

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In the case of swimwear celebrities have proven that a 2 piece swimsuit does not always have to be better than 1.  We have seen celebrities from Beyonce to the Kardashians make a 1 piece just as classy and sexy at the same time.  We can all benefit from a 1 piece as it can cover up  and hide our flaws. 
This summer season has had a slow start, but memorial day has definitely proven that summer is amongst us.  I expect metallics, prints, bright colors, cut outs, and bandeau's to be the most popular trend.  One of my most popular trends is mix matching the 2 pieces.  So don't be afraid this summer, show your style through matching a print top with a metallic top.

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Kiddie Botox: NEVER InFashion

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I was horrified to hear the news of the 8-year-old beauty pageant contestant whose mother is injecting her with botox to alter her appearance. As a teenage athlete, I applaud companies, such as Dove and Nike, in the beauty and fashion industries that support a positive body image to young girls. Also controversial, is the new ad by Sketchers aimed at very young girls, starting at the age of 7, to firm their butt and thighs. Athletes, such as Maria Sharapova, Danica Patrick and Misty May, show how fashionable it is to be healthy and love your body. Young girls should be encouraged to flex their muscles and not freeze them with botox. What do you think?


Posted by Jacqueline Baum



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The Skinny On Belts

 
Girls love to accessories their daily outfits with belts. While walking around New York City; I've come to notice more women are completing their outfit with a high wasted skinny belt, rather than a wide waisted. Have skinny belts won the popularity contest against wide belts? It looks like they have in NYC. A skinny belt can be worn with casual or sophisticated clothes, bringing your ensemble a chic and sharp look. These belts look great over cardigans, rompers, dresses and tops. Mix it up! No matter your belt size, show off those curves!  

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Bohemian Drop & Chandelier Earrings


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Doesn't Kate Hudson look gorgeous in her white halter maxi dress and turquoise chandelier earrings?  You can't go wrong with a lightweight sun dress this season, the "hippie" or "bohemian" look is still in!  Accessorize with some teardrop shaped or chandelier earrings for the all-out goddess look.

My favorite style of these long earrings are by Hive and Honey.  Check out the Orange Beaded Earrings!  One of the most extreme pairs I found by Tarina Tarantino are extra large Skull Drop Earrings, an adorable choice for the punk rock fashionista! 

With earrings as large and detailed as these chandeliers, make sure not to OVER accessorize.  A simple bangle set of bracelets or a large ring is plenty, especially if you are sporting a stylish print maxi dress.   There's no need for a bulky necklace, these earrings will do the job!  

Image Creditsi:  Google, Piperlime, ShopStyle, FabSugar.com

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Street Fashion: The Red Head Trend

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We've seen it before in a much more conservative way, but now we have an explosion of the Red Heads.  It has definitely been seen before, but perhaps not as popular as it has become now.  From the more classic look of Julia Roberts in the 90's to the more modern Rhianna of today's youth.  They have made it a trend that we see both between other celebrities and the everyday person.  When worn with the right look you can go from chic in red to more of a rock look.  It can go great with a variety of skin complexions just as the right tone of red can portray a different image as the darker red is more of my favorite or perhaps to suggest a settle change try streaks of red.  The red hair works great from big curls to long locks, color is in.

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Bill Cunningham New York: Movie Premiere in Chicago

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I know all you fashionistas are aware of the work of Bill Cunningham in Sunday's Style Section, "On The Street" and "Evening Hours" in the New York Times. It was indeed exciting to get a behind-the-scenes look at his amazing work at the preview party thrown at the W Hotel.  Of course I cover the Chicago Streets on my blog, but he did it first- before the others also like Tommy Ton and the Sartorialist.  He does it daily (rain or snow) on his bike, which he mentions has been stolen 29 times, and he's over 80 years old! Don't you just love it?!

I got a chance to talk to film makers Richard Press, Director & Cinematographer, and Phillip Gefter, Producer. When asked what was the most difficult part of making the documentary, they said "convincing Bill to agree to do it."  It took 8 years of convincing and 2 years to do the movie.  He is an original.  He see's fashion as the armor to survive, and the armor of everyday life.  He says it (fashion) educates the eye.

Don't miss the movie which is playing for only one week at the Music Box Theatre (3733 N. Southport Ave). I loved it!!



Bill Cunningham image credits: Google


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Oprah Visit's Ralph Lauren

 

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As Oprah counts down her final shows, this past Wednesday's episode sure didn't disappoint.  The iconic Ralph Lauren sat down for the first time to interview with Oprah at his amazing Colorado ranch.  Wife Ricky and children Andrew, David, and Dylan all dressed in RL, joined the interview and talked about growing up in the Lauren household.  Andrew is currently a film producer, while David is Vice President of Advertising, Marketing, and Corporate Communications at Ralph Lauren. 

 

Daughter Dylan, who owns Dylan Candy Bar in New York is expected to wed next month.  Set to wear a gown by none other than Ralph Lauren himself, just talking about the experience designing his daughter's wedding gown brought the designer to tears.  We can expect this to be the next most talked about wedding gown of the year. 

 

Beginning as a teenager making ties, Ralph Lauren has worked his way to the top.  When asked how he went from designing fashion to home furnishings, Ralph Lauren stated "I'm not about fashion, I'm about living."  Ralph Lauren is the biggest selling designer of all time.

 

Image Credits: Google, Style.com

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Wrist Appeal.....Trendy Bracelets!

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I'm always looking for a way to add a little something special to my outfits, whether it is a necklace or a fun pair of glasses. But this spring, I'm interested in finding a funky way to wear bracelets. There is a trend budding in my school of wearing skinny belts as bracelets, and I must say, I think it's so cute! Of course, we aren't the first to realize the potential in this look; Hermes makes watches inspired by the same wrap around the wrist look. I've been trying to incorporate this trend into my outfits over the past couple of weeks and it adds an edginess that wasn't there before. I think it's something that everyone should try out! But if you don't have a skinny belt, you can always pile on the bracelets you have. Some kids at my school wear tons of bracelets and they always add a fun touch, especially if the bracelets are for a good cause. The "Livestrong" bracelets, created by biker Lance Armstrong, and "I love boobies" bracelets both support cancer research. The perfect way to stylishly show your support for charities! Make sure to check out the pics of some kids at my high school!

Posted by Stephanie Greene

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Summer Shoes: Espadrilles for Men and Women


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MYMU Espadrilles for Men & Women

There's nothing more unflattering than funky, un-pedicured toes on guys and girls.  If you're slacking on a trip to the nail salon, skip the flip flops and pick up a pair of espadrilles.  These unisex shoes with lightweight canvas and roped soles come in all kinds of styles, even in closed toe wedges for girls!  They've been around since the 14th century, and are still trendy.

One of my favorite brands is MYMU by Gabriela Lanardonne.  Inspired by stylish locals on her trips to Buenos Aires as a child,  theses espadrilles were designed for formal wear - believe it or not - yet they are a beautiful take on the upscale cotton sneaker.

Buy a pair and support a great cause with Tom's espadrilles, who gives one pair of Tom's shoes to a child in need for each pair you purchase.  Guys, you too can benefit from a great pair of these casual summer slip-ons, check out the Tom's Kenya Striped Cardones.  So, give these comfortable urban shoes a try and enjoy the warm weather - if it ever comes to Chicago!

Image Credits: Elle, Google, MYMYU, Tom's



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Fashion: Red vs. Pink Hot or Not

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As we all know bright colors are in style this season. The scheme of colors is far from limited to just apparel.  Celebrities have taken it a step further by literally speaking their fashion sense.  Through most of the winter months we often saw red lips that still seem to pop up here and there on the red carpet.  However, we now see that pink lips are speaking for themselves and also making an entrance. 

Both colors are risky and require just the right personality and fashion sense to match.  Not everyone can pull off the risky colors, and one may be better than the other on some.  You have to be just as careful with choosing just the right tone for the right time and place.  Red can be more of a evening accessory and portrays a more sexy image, where as pink is more playful.  When we see pink we typically think of Barbie, but with just the right tone it can suddenly turn into a more seductive approach.

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Nails....All Cracked up?

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Usually cracked nails are something we want to avoid, but today cracked nails are the hottest trend in nail art. Both OPI and China Glaze have introduced new products that, when applied on top of your normal polish, give the appearance of shattered nails. Super glam girl Katy Perry has been spotted wearing the new crackled finish along with Serena Williams and Fergie. The most popular colors have been black and silver, but my personal favorite is the navy blue crackled polish. As OPI and China Glaze come up with more and more colors, cracked nail polish is quickly becoming a new trend for both teens and adults. So if you're looking for something new to do with your nails - get cracking!

Posted by Jacqueline Baum

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Rosie Huntington-Whiteley: From Runway to Big Screen

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I'm sure many of you remember downtown Chicago being turned upside down last year with the making of Transformers.  Well Rosie Huntington-Whiteley has crossed over into acting with her role in the upcoming movie.  The 24 year Victoria Secret model who is dating actor Jason Statham, stopped by the Ellen Show this past Tuesday to talk about her endeavors.  The gorgeous model turned actress was also named number one most beautiful woman in Maxim Magazine.  Transformers: Dark of the Moon hits theaters July 1st.

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Fashion: Missoni teams up with Target

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We can all get excited, the wait is over.  Missoni has now teamed up with Target to mass produce its collection.  The Italian designers are well known for their brilliance in both knits and prints, as we know are both big this season.  It has been reported that the release date will conveniently be on this upcoming September 13. 
The release of the collection is expected to occur nation wide, with at least 400 products.  If you have not already, this is a great time to become more familiar with Missoni products as we can expect to see everything from apparel to home decorative options.  I am even more excited to know that by being collaborative with Target we can expect to see affordable prices, with supplies for the entire family to enjoy.

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Interview with DJ Skooby Laposky

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Brooklyn-based Waaves Studio Creative Director Skooby Laposky is the talented & internationally known DJ/Producer at the SAIC student fashion show on May 6 at Millennium Park. If you missed the fabulous show, hopefully you caught him at Danny's in Bucktown Thursday night or last night at Beauty Bar



BG: Everyone in Chicago, that loves fashion, knows that the students at the SAIC always present an amazing fashion show & laboratory of new ideas. How are you approaching the music for  their fashion show May 6th at Millennium Park? Will you go to a lineup to look at the clothes for inspiration?

SL: The senior designers have given me direct input on what style or feeling of music they want to support their collections with.  The sophomores and juniors collections come out on the runway in groups, so Shane Gabier (an SAIC fashion professor) will select music from his knowledge of their work. Shane and I will go through his selections and finalize the songs together. All of the music decisions have to be from the catalogs of Thrill Jockey (and a few other European dance labels) who were incredibly gracious to let us use their music gratis.  Some of the selected music will be creatively edited and live-looped to work with all the variables of a runway show since some songs are very short or only have certain parts that work thematically.  


BG:  Back in the 80's I was a partner/owner of a disco named FACES and the success of the evening was always based on the music that the DJ played.  What do you consider when you are selecting the music?  How does the audience - age group or gender - influence your choice of music?

SL: For the runway show, the music has to set the pace and create a mood.  Every selection should function in this way and the overall mix has to create a rhythm and contour to keep the audience engaged.


BG:  And speaking of clubs, where is your favorite club to DJ or hang out?

SL: In NY it was "Love", which closed down, but had one of the best sound systems, so you never got ear fatigue. Haven't played that much in Chicago but Smart Bar has a good system.


BG:  You have done remixes in fashion for Jason Wu, Gemma Kahng & others. Who presented the biggest challenge & who was the most fun?

SL: Gemma was all original stuff; it was more of a challenge. Jason used music that existed already. The projects I've done in Europe have been high tech (with intricate laser-cutting techniques) so the music tends to be less grounded in past references.


BG:  If there is one person you could see perform live, who would you like to see most?

SL: Would love to have seen Miles Davis. I'm a big fan of his music.

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Bandage It Up...Hot New Look!

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I am excited to introduce my new intern, Jacqueline Baum from Highland Park High school (I celebrate all students.) She will be doing a weekly post for what's hot for teens and adults like you and me. Let me know what you think! 


It's the hottest skirt of the season and it's popping up on the red carpet and all the hot spots in Chicago. Celebrities such as Rihanna, Mary-Kate Olsen and Kim Kardashian have made the bandage skirt a wardrobe staple. The look that was originally introduced by designer Herve Leger has been reinterpreted for a younger crowd by the brand Pleasure Doing Business. I like the colorful turquoise and navy striped skirt, now available at Saks and Cusp. The bandage beauty can also be found in all your favorite colors. For a sophisticated nighttime vibe, tuck in a tight strapless top into the skirt and slip into high platform pumps. For a more casual, daytime look, pair the bandage skirt with a loose fitting t-shirt and gladiator flats. If you're having a fashion emergency, put a bandage on it!

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Fashion: Tattoo Trend

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Are tattoos becoming the latest fashion trend?  We see more and more celebrities inking up their body every season.  With the summer approaching and getting fit for the summer, I am sure we can expect to see some new tattoos on some of our favorite celebrities.  I notice that most of our ladies are consistently placing them on their wrist, as Katie Perry and Jessica Alba has done.  Then we have Angelina Jolie who we know is no stranger to ink, as she is cover in tattoos.  Do we find them appealing or just a scream for attention?  Tattoos many time symbolize occurrences in the celebrities life's whether it be their children names or Rhianna's battle with her past abuse.  Then we have Amy Winehouse covered in tattoos but definitely expresses her personality.  In or out we can definitely expect to see new tattoos

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Kate Middleton Bride Doll Recreated In 5 Hours!

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With no leaks of the gorgeous bridal gown of Kate Middleton, the creative team of Ashton-Drake Galleries (makers of collectible dolls in Niles, IL) were determined to recreate an almost exact replica of the bride in her gown.  Well mission accomplished...within 5 hours after the world got its first glimpse of the Sarah Burton-designed gown, amazingly, the doll, tiara and all, was complete!  The replica bride doll, created by master seamstress Ashton Drake and designer Yermen Romero will soon go into production where each porcelain doll will be hand-painted and matched with a certificate of authenticity. The collectible doll is available for order @ $149.99 at the company's website, www.ashtondrake.com.

photos courtesy Jean Lachat/Sun-times

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The British Are Coming: All Saints

 

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The British have certainly been the topic of conversation lately with the recent Royal Wedding.  Now we are being invaded on Michigan Avenue by a British retailer called All Saints. Established in 1994, the retailer is known for fusing music, fashion and culture.  With several dozen stores already in the UK, All Saints is marking it's territory by adding its 11th US store in the heart of the Magnificent Mile. Pushing individuality and attitude, the grunge inspired retailer will be sure to catch the attention of passersby. Can't wait for the grand opening, which is scheduled for Mid May."

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Kate Middleton's Dress By Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen

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The dress was revealed and indeed it was worth the wait...Kate wore the dress..the dress did not wear her.  It will be the dress copied around the world...elegant and regal.  And all this was created with perfection by OUR designer of the month...Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen!  To me, it was the perfect blend of modern with tradition.  I loved it..what did you think?

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Interview with Charla Krupp, Best-Selling Author and Host of Northbrook Court's Cause 'N Effect

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Yesterday morning I sat down with my friend, Charla Krupp, over breakfast at the Ritz Carlton to discuss some of her suggestions on what to wear to a wedding since we all have an interest with the continual news of the Royal Wedding, of which I will be glued to the TV to see every glamorous moment. Charla, a native of Chicago's North Shore and best-selling author of every woman's style bible, How To Never Look Fat Again: Over 1000 Ways to Dress Thinner Without Dieting, which spent many weeks on the New York Times best-seller list is hosting the event, "Cause 'N Effect" at Northbrook Court tonight, from 6 - 8 PM, celebrating 9 local women who have started or are heading up charities. Tickets are $25 & Charla tells me the goody bags are worth the price of the ticket along with a fashion show demonstrating looks on how not to look fat this spring! 100% of ticket sales give back to these charities.

BG: What do you suggest to wear to a wedding since we are all focused on weddings with the royal event on Friday?

CK: Don't wear white to a wedding as this is the choice of the bride. Dress respectfully-this is not a night club- and dress on the conservative side. Wear a 50's style sheath dress that emulates the trend of the Mad Men look with a great pair of pumps and the Tiffany bracelet bag. Look trendy, but not too sexy.


BG: Whenever I did a TV segment on NBC5 on dressing for a wedding, I received lots of email asking if it was acceptable to wear black. What do you think?

CK: Women wear too much black which becomes a boring antidote. Wear fushia, orange, a color that flatters your skin.


BG: So if not black what should fuller figured women wear as black is certainly slenderizing?

CK: If you have to wear black because it flatters you maybe you can wear a darker color like navy or maroon; that will do the trick. 


For more info on tonight's event contact: (847) 498-8161

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Will Kate wear her Hair up or Down: Royal Wedding Day Coiffure


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As we are closely approaching the big day rumors of last minute decisions still circulate amongst the country, as to if Kate Middleton will wear her hair up or down, a crown or flowers, or where the honey moon will take place.  I think it is safe to say that I believe we can expect to see Middleton with her hair down.  It is very seldom that we have ever seen Middleton with her hair pulled back, as her beautiful locks stretch to her back.  Although both Princess Diana and Queen Elizabeth II wore their hair short it did not stop them from wearing their hair down. 

Kate Middleton has definitely become what we know as a trend setter.  Her extreme beautiful hats are becoming more and more popular as she wears them beautifully.  It is no surprise that both her and Princess Diana were both fashionista's with similar hats worn.  Her long hair only adds to the look and enhances the style.  Clearly Prince Williams loves the long hair as men tend to have a long hair preference over short.  Whether Kate Middleton wears her hair up or down I am sure she will set a trend and wear it well.

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Kate Middleton and the Dukan Diet: How Thin Is Too Thin!

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The slender bride-to-be Kate Middleton at 5'10" and 120 lbs is said to be relying on the Dukan Diet and exercise in preparation for her royal wedding.  Rumor has it that she's lost enough weight that she had to size down her engagement ring.  The Dukan Diet is known as the French version of the Atkins Diet which consists of high protein, low-fat meals and adds very large amounts of water and oat bran. Kate's Mum, Carole is also rumored to be on the same regimen. What do my readers think...portion control and eating from every food group or fad diets like the Dukan.  How thin is too thin or does Kate continue to look fabulous? The wedding countdown continues.

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The Ultimate Count Down

April 29th is quickly approaching as we have anxiously awaited to see Prince William and Kate Middleton tie the knot.  It is expected to be one of the biggest events in history as well as one of the most viewed in the world by spectators as reporters and camera crews will be standing by.  Although it is still unknown as to whether or not Kate Middleton will be wearing a crown or flowers or who the lucky designer of her gown is, it keeps us even more excited to capture the moment. 

However we have heard that we can expect to see a guest list of almost 2,000, in which they were asked to either be in military uniform, business attire, or tail coats.  I am sure we will see some of the worlds biggest charity members and icons.  Amongst many will be friends, family, and former classmates.  The wedding reception will be held at Buckingham palace with the Queen herself will be hosting, and has been noted that less than half of the guest list has been invited.  And we can expect to hear the voices of the chapel royal choir, one other choir, and an orchestra as they prep for the big day.


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Summer Fashion: Swimsuits & Celebs


At the first temporary & usually warm day we had in Chicago, with the thermometer hitting 80°, I couldn't help but think of swimsuit season. Yes, I know every woman has a hint of terror with uncovering more skin after a winter of being layered up but, Refinery29.com recently did a post on the right bathing suit for your body. Sometimes I just ignore all the advice and find a great cover up. I love to see what the celebs are wearing with their perfectly toned bodies. What are some of your choices? 


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Highland Park HS: Focus On The Arts

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It was indeed an honor to be invited to be the sole speaker on "Fashion" at Highland Park High School this week at their event held every 2 years called, Focus On The Arts. Yes, some alums from this school include Gary Sinise and many Hollywood producers. My program was called "Passion For Fashion" which I have had since I was a kid. Yes, I have worn 7 different hats with my many positions including, Fashion Editor, Club Owner, Boutique Owner, Image & Wardrobe Consultant, Teacher, TV Fashion Editor/Reporter and now, Blogger. I loved speaking to my class which was a packed room with over 80 students and some parents. Giving back is also a big passion of mine and I loved being with students as they are so enthusiastic, intelligent and eager to grow and learn.

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Gender-Bender...J. Crew Ad Creates Controversy!

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The ad reads.."Lucky for me, I ended up with a boy whose favorite color is pink. Toenail painting is way more fun in neon". Once again, another controversy is bestowed upon us! Have we gone overboard as to what we think effects gender confusion? Well, when a poll was taken, early Wednesday, about 32,000 votes came in; 46% thought the ad was "adorable", 47% thought it was "inappropriate" (oh my!), and then there was the undecided 8%.  By the way, Jennifer Lopez, who was just named as People Magazine's 2011 Most Beautiful Woman, stated in her Beautiful People Mag interview :"(Daughter Emme) is very girly-girl, just like me since I was very little. She loves for me to paint her nails. She lays out her clothes on the floor like I do with my stylist and she's like, 'This matches very good!' (Son Max) wants to paint his nails too. Because for him, it's just paint. He's like, 'I want the blue!'" We know Jen on the block's opinion...what do my readers think?? 

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Karl Lagerfeld Designs: Spring 2011 AND Diet Coke

 
   
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Several years ago when King Karl, yes Karl Lagerfeld was in Chicago, I inteviewed him on NBC5 & we had dinner together at Blackbird. He was indeed charming and on his way to his slim, fabulous, stylish self as he is today. To pass on the message of staying healthy & slim, he is now designing bottles for Diet Coke. No, you can't wear these designs but they will definitely look fab on my book shelves! Along with his new designs for Coke, Karl Lagerfeld also has an amazing Spring 2011 eyewear collection with many options designed to showcase Lagerfeld's logo using vintage shapes wrapped with lush textures and vibrant colors. Check out the video of Lagerfeld's latest Diet Coke collection. Do we love Lagerfeld's designs for eyewear as well as his designs for diet coke?
(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

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Fashion: Chicago has Talent

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Project Runway

The phenomenal show "Project Runway" hosted by Heidi Klum, with team members like Michael Kors and Tim Gunn are bringing their casting to the windy city for the upcoming season 9.  We are expected to have great talent from Chicago, with well trained designers from leading fashion schools like Columbia college or the Art Institute we are bound to hit the runway.  However, this will not be the first time the windy city has made its mark on Project Runway as Cynthia Rowley brought us amazing designs and Bobbi Brown proved herself as a remarkable make-up artist on the show.  I will be interviewing the winner of season 4 Christian Siriano at Columbia college on April 26, look out for the post that week so you do not miss out.

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Interview With Jewelry Designer Paloma Picasso

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I was very excited to interview one of the world's most acclaimed jewelry designers, Paloma Picasso, (daughter of Pablo Picasso & Francoise Gilot), on her recent visit to Chicago. We had a great conversation over tea at the WAC. I first discovered her bold and graphic designs at Tiffany 30 years ago when I admired her "x" designs. It was always a sign of love, beauty and architecture. Today her jewelry continues to excite me with her latest Zellige collection for Tiffany along with her extraordinary colored stones. 


BG: How was your first collection for Tiffany over 25 years ago different from your collection today?


PP: It all began 30 years ago if we are speaking truthfully. I think it was an evolution. If you compare, you can see it was obviously designed by the same person. That's why I like jewelry. There is a certain cognizance to it. People can pass down jewelry for generations and generations and to me, it is a beautiful thing.


BG: What continues to influence your collection?


PP: Everything that happens to me influences my designs. My home in Marrakech has a slight Moroccan feel to it and the architecture all around me really influences me. European details in furniture contribute to my design process as well. You can see the influence in my Zellige collection.


BG: You have been inducted into The Hall of Fame International Best Dressed List. How would you describe your own fashion signature?


PP: With my style, a long time ago with jewelry, I thought simplistically to show off the pieces. Black suits me, and it showcases the jewelry wonderfully.


BG: Yves St. Laurent, Karl Lagerfeld, Antonio, Studio 54 were all a part of your group. What influence did they have on you?


PP: We all would share our point of views on trends. I would go to YSL's show and I would be dressed like his models, by accident, it's like it was in the air. Being together so much caused us to almost think in the same way. But with fashion back then, it wasn't as fashionable as it is now. At first, not many people would show up and the shows were usually held for the buyers and now it's a huge spectacle.


BG: You travel extensively. When packing what would you never leave home without?


PP: I would never leave the house without black trousers and a black top.


BG: What's can we expect in the future from your jewelry collection?


PP: There will be more of a men's collection coming later this summer. I see that men are being more adventurous with their fashions, so I always make sure to run the designs by my husband who isn't really into fashion. If he approves, then it must be good. My husband and I take from each other. We create the right sparkle.


BG: And what a great team they are. Can't wait to see the men's collection this summer at Tiffany & Co.


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Seduced By Guerlain: Rouge Automatique Launched

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I have been seduced by Guerlain since I was a teenager wearing Shalimar Perfume which made all the boys follow my scent. Well, now I am seduced once again by their latest new lipstick, Guerlain Rouge Automatique. For the woman who understands the term "multi-task",  you will love this new lipstick!  It's a tube that doesn't have a cap. I don't know about you but the more freedom I have with my hands to unlock doors, answer my cell phone, tip the doorman and yes, check my makeup and hair, the happier I am. Well, Guerlain wants to make my life, and yours, easier by introducing 25 new spring shades available for $35 at Saks Fifth Avenue. I personally love color 165 which is an amazing shade of pink!!  So pucker up and show off your new spring shade.

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The Maxi Dress Equals Maxi Fashion!

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Sarah Jessica Parker, Jessica Hart, and Ashley Oslen in their Maxi Dresses.


The 1970's are back with Maxi dresses this Spring and Summer! With little effort and MAXI-mum effect, the Maxi dress is instant fashion. Pair this hippie-inspired trend with embellished flip flops and a solid-color bag clutch, or dress it up with bangles and chunky wedges. From the beach to the streets, the Maxi is one of the only fashion trends that can be worn by almost any woman- there's lots of fabric to show off! Gorgeous flowing prints and patterns will flatter any body type.

Sarah Jessica Parker wears a deep blue tye-dyed long sleeve Maxi, perfect as evening wear on a cooler spring or summer evening.   Jessica Hart plays it cool with a top hat, giving her Maxi style a hippie-meets-punk feel.   Transform all that fabric and dress it up with an adorable skinny belt around the waist like Ashley OlsenNicole Richie is the queen of the Maxi Dress, check out the slideshow below to see how she wears hers along with our other favorite celebrities!

Image Credits: WhoWhatWear, StyleHive, Babble, Google

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Jennifer Hudson: New Body & A New Boyfriend

 

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One of our favorite singers, Jennifer Hudson, has never looked better. Besides her amazing weight loss, thanks to Weight Watchers, Jennifer Hudson also has a happy glow due to her new fiance, David Otunga. David, a Chicago native, is a professional wrestler and a Harvard graduate who popped the question to Hudson with a Neil Lane diamond ring on her 27th birthday. Both Hudson and Otunga hail from Chicago, making them even more lovable for us Chicagoans.We love Jennifer Hudson and can't wait to hear and see more from her. Like her ad for Weight Watchers states(seen below), "It's a new dawn, a new day, a new life.. and I'm feeling good." And she looks good too!

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

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Color Explosion For Spring: From Top to Bottom

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One of the top trends for Spring fashion is color, lots and lots of color. As seen on the street and on celebrities, like Lady Gaga and Nicki Minaj, color is everywhere. The five main colors seen out are different hues of pink, blue, orange, yellow, and earth tones. But this trend extends farther than just clothing, it can also apply to hair color.  

In the slideshow below are examples of each color trend and of some celebrities following the hair color trend. In the photo above the designers are from left, Peter Som, Versace, Burberry Prorsum, DKNY. 

By Dinell W.

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Stephanie Speak/How Do You Wear Your Toms?

(My teen blogger, Stephanie, introduced me to Toms..check out what this company is all about and you too can show your swag with great fashion shoes and give back at the same time!)b&w fashion-1.jpg


Toms shoes are becoming more and more popular as the days go by. Toms was just started in 2006 and has flourished into a company that I think should be the model for other companies. This company advocates for conscious consumerism and giving to those in need; for every pair of shoes bought, a pair of shoes will be given to a shoeless child in a developing country. Too many children are developing diseases from things that they are stepping on, and Toms is doing something about it. As of September 2010, Toms had given over one million pairs of shoes. Next week, on April 5th, is One Day Without Shoes. Don't wear shoes to experience how children in developing countries are living, and to show your support of the Toms One for One movement. It's a fun and easy way to inspire change in your community! I plan on participating and I'm in the process of starting a Toms Campus Club with my friend Claritza. We are having fun making difference, you can too. Visit toms.com to see what you can do! Check out the pictures of the kids in my school showing their support!



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Celebrity Fashion Styles: The Chunky Necklace

 

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A chunky necklace is a standout accessory every woman needs to have in their wardrobe. Jessica Alba, Leighton Meester, and Oliva Palermo are just a few celebrities spotted with great statement necklaces this year. They add pizazz, style, and intrigue to any outfit. Even during the summer, when it's hot and sunny, it's always nice to dress up a light summer dress or casual outfit with an eye-popping necklace. Will you be wearing your statement jewelry this spring/summer?

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

 

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Too Sexy at Seven?

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Most of you know that I see "Fashion" as  metaphor for self-esteem. So what does it say about the self-esteem of a 7-year old whose mom buys her a padded push-up bikini from Abercrombie kids for her summer wardrobe? Does this garment tell her daughter that you need to enhance your body to look good to the world? What ever happened to building character? Yes, I am supportive of looking good like wearing lipstick when you are a teen and later makeup when you are an adult. But, whatever happened to supporting childhood?

Let's place more emphasis on building self-esteem and education and less on looking like a Playboy Bunny.

By Dinell W.

Selena Gomez (Justin Bieber's Gal Pal) Plans Summer Tour

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Pop star Selena Gomez, alleged paramour of Justin Bieber, will embark on a summer tour with her band, The Scene, in anticipation of their 3rd studio effort.  Gomez's lead single, "Who Says" (a positive message for girls) debuted at  #24 on Billboard's Top 100 earlier this month. The tour begins July 24 in Costa Mesa, California and tickets go on sale this weekend at the band's website.http://selenagomez.com/


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R.I.P. Liz (1932-2011)

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Elizabeth Taylor...synonymous with beauty, style and grace.  An icon who defined the term movie star; we will miss you.

Kate Middleton: Franklin Mint Doll and Burberry Coat

 

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Everyone cannot get enough of Kate Middleton and the royal wedding. We personally love Kate and everything that she does and wears. She has become increasingly more popular as the countdown to the wedding draws closer and closer. Pictures have started popping up of her in bikinis and many designers are taking full advantage of her beautiful looks and graceful manner. Kate modeled a sheer see-though dress in college which was very revealing, the one where the Prince certainly began to look at her in a different light. Well now, the dress is being auctioned off by the college designer with all of the proceeds going to charity. Franklin Mint, the leader in the portrait doll world, is also using Kate to make a doll out of in the very blue dress she wore when her and the Prince announced their engagement. The Kate dolls cost $195. It seems that everything with Kate's picture on it gets sold immediately whether it's a stamp or the Burberry raincoat that she wore to a christening on a boat which sold out immediately. So are you in love with Kate just as much as we are or are you ready for the royal wedding to be over already?

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

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Usher: Are Guys in Hats Sexy?

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It's hard to classify a modern man in a hat as having a bad sense of style.  There's something special about a man in a hat, and Usher sure knows how to pull it off well.  Take the character Donald Draper (actor John Hamm) from AMC's Mad Men for example.  Back in the 1950's to early 1960's, every man wore a hat.  Hats, especially the popular Fedora style, marked a man as having poise, class, and most attractively - confidence.  Fedoras aren't just for special occasions or a dress suit accessory, you can wear it with a t-shirt and jeans.  For a more casual look try a flat cap or a beanie, but steer clear of the boring baseball cap!

Usher is a fabulous style icon - take some tips from the gallery below featuring Usher, Justin Timberlake, David Beckham, and other celebrities on how to pair the right hat with the right outfit.  A great hat paired with a stylish outfit is sure to make the ladies swoon!


Image Source: Google Images

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Louis Vuitton - Fall Winter 2011/2012 Full Fashion Show

A feast for the eyes...magnifique!! Sit back with a cup o' joe or an elegant glass of wine and ENJOY!! Bravo to Marc Jacobs.

New Fashion Designer: Fierce in Thakoon Designs

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The Thai born, Omaha raised, Thakoon Panichgul has raised both the brow and the bar of fashion designers.  Once fashion editor turned designer, has always had eye catching designs.  It was in 2008 at the Democratic National Convention that his design was draped wonderfully on Michele Obama, bringing his name to fame.  His designs are far from effortless with striking prints used in a chic manner.  He has an eye for intricate details and a knack for organza designs.  Keeping up with the trends of the season, Thakoon continues to impress his fans and keeps us lusting for more pieces to add to our wardrobe.  Look no further!  Now that he has partnered with both Target and Gap his designs are even more accessible.


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Hermes Chicago: Chicago's Elite

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It was a sea of Birkin bags and Hermes scarves on women everywhere when I arrived at the beautiful Hermes store event called, "The Festival of Crafts." I felt like I was back in Paris with the 9 craftsmen that are here from Paris through Wednesday, March 16th to show their products are handcrafted. It was amazing to watch them at work. It certainly made me want to take up horseback riding again (yes, I did ride as a child) as the Hermes saddles were a work of art. Yes, of course everything was beautiful at Hermes including the clothes, jewelry, handbags, and home accessories. 

By Dinell W.

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Fashion:150 Years of Couturiers, Designers, Labels - A Fashionista's Bible

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Vogue, March 15, 1969


  Photo: Courtesy of Ullmann-Publishing (book cover); Photographed by Bert Stern (Vogue image)hival image)

150 Years of Couturiers, Designers, Labels (Charlotte Seeling)....this is an exciting book on any fashionista's coffee table! Beautiful photographs and informative text make it a must-have in my world...check it out!

Megan Fox Strips Down To Bra and Panties...Sexy Armani Ad

How sensuous is Megan Fox in this sexy new ad for  Emporio Armani underwear and Armani jeans? This 24-year-old actress strips down to her bra and panties leaving not a lot to the imagination, showcasing her slender bod covered in tattoos.  I think the ad is quite beautiful....what do my readers think?

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Gwyneth Paltrow and Outrageous Earring Trends

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Celebrities will go to great lengths to stand out in their designer goods. But when it comes to ear accessories, how far is too far? Gwyneth Paltrow's enormous Louis Vuitton earrings at the Grammy awards are a great example of Designer goods gone wrong.

A little too much like vintage clip-ons, this pair weighed down Gwyneth's thin facial features and clashed with her sequined sleek Calvin Klein dress. The earrings are from Vuitton's "L'Ame du Voyage" high line, a feather shape embellished with colored stones on white gold.

Feather earrings have been the hot trend for the past few years, however they are finally on their way out! Feathers are lovely, however there's so many styles that it is hard to look unique. A few celebrities who have pulled off feathers well are Jessica Hudgens and Miley Cyrus. The two love sporting extra large feathers in a variety of colors.

Hoop earrings in all sizes will always remain classic. Try a twist on the traditional hoop, and take a look at Rihanna's bold wooden hoops with spikes. Talk about rare! Whatever style you choose, make sure not to go too over-the-top. When it comes to earrings, less is always more.

Picking the right pair of earrings always depends on your outfit. Some funky ear accessories can spice up your everyday t-shirt and jeans look.

Image sources: Getty, Google

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Sexy Jennifer Aniston Bares Ripped Abs

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Once again Jennifer Aniston forces us to do a double take, whether she is on the red carpet or the big screen.

At the age of 42 years young there is no question of her natural beauty. She has impressed us with her fabulous look since her days of Friends.

As seen in the picture Aniston is showing off her stomach in the new ad for Smart Water. If that is what the Smart Water can do then I may have to go on a Smart Water diet. Notice Aniston is rocking a new hair cut, do we love it?

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Kate Middleton Hats: Philip Treacy Designer

 

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Who says you can't look fab wearing a hat? Certainly Kate Middleton proves you can look classic, chic and modern in the right hat. We know some of those hats were designed by famous English Designer Philip Treacy, who has done amazing hats for Lady Gaga, Sarah Jessica Parker and the fantastic hats for Carmilla Parker Bowles at her wedding to Prince Charles. When Kate marries Prince William at the end of April, all eyes will be on her dress... and on her head. Kate always seems to be wearing stylish hats and everyone is excited to see what she might have on for her evening reception. Keep your eyes out for a beautiful Philip Treacy hat. What do you think? Are you adventurous enough to branch out and wear some great hats?

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

 

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Celebrity Fashion Faux Pas!


Do you think this was a good fashion look for Lindsay's court appearance....I thought I would have a little fun today.  As a fashion consultant and one who has been in the biz for a while now....it amazes me how celebrities appear with such major fashion don'ts.  Well even movie stars are human...everyone has a bad fashion (or hair day)! What were they thinking?  Check out a few eyesores in the gallery below......

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John Galliano Fired From Dior: Anti-Semitism Rears It's Ugly Head Once Again

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Tell me, how does one work in an industry where many of the biggest talents are Jews, from designers to CEO's of companies? How about Ralph Lauren, Issac Mizrahi, Calvin Klein, Donna Karen, Diane Von Furstenberg, Dana Buchman, etc.,etc... just to name a few. John Galliano, Christian Dior designer, didn't seem to mind getting a paycheck signed by Jews. But now, after too many drinks (pulling a Mel Gibson?) at a bar two weeks ago, and a video of his disgusting comments, he has been fired. Oscar-winner Natalie Portman, Israeli-born and the face of Christian Dior's latest scent, has also found him disgusting. "Having watched the racist rantNatalie Portman, the Israeli-born face of Miss Dior Chérie, also released a statement last night. The newly crowned best actress said: "I am deeply shocked and disgusted by the video of John Galliano's comments that surfaced today." Christian Dior 's CEO Sidney Toledano, said the following, "I very firmly condemn what was said by John Galliano, which totally contradicts the values which have always been defended by Christian Dior."


I, too, am angered and saddened by this recent public rant...so proud to see people stand up to this act of prejudice as it is indeed , just plain ignorant!

Kate Middleton Fashion Watch: Issa A Favorite Designer

 

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Daniella Helayel is a name that most of you may not be familiar with. This great designer is celebrating her 10 year anniversary of her Issa line (her middle name) with a fantastic fall/winter 2011 collection at London Fashion Week. Issa is known for making beautiful jersey pieces while adding many colorful prints and is one of Kate Middletons favorite designers. Kate Middleton famously wore a perfect royal blue Issa dress to announce her engagement to Prince William, it soon sold out at Net-a-Porter, which brought tons of international recognition to the label.

This season,the designer is proud of her bohemian chic prints in stand out bold colors. The draped jersey dresses, deep-v neck lines, and silky full circle skirts paired with tights are some looks that can't go wrong. The collection is very intriguing, which is why Kate Middleton probably likes it due to her great, sophisticated, elegant but conservative taste. What do you think of Issa?

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

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SAIC Fashion 2011: A Must-See!

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Design by Grace Lee


It's that time of year again!  SAIC FASHION 2011, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago's annual fashion show will take place Thursday, May 5th.  Fashion 2011 will be presented 3 times on that day...9am is a general admission dress rehearsal and tickets are $40.  The 12pm and 3pm show are also general admission and tickets are $75.  The tickets are all on sale now and always sell out so go online at www.saic.edu/fashionshow and get your tickets now to avoid disappointment.  It's a hot show and we love to support our School of the Art Institute!  The Walk 2011 begins with a lovely cocktail reception at 6pm on May 5th and followed by The Walk 2011 runway show honoring Ikram Goldman (former celebrated stylist of Michelle Obama!) and of course a very elegant post show dinner @ 8pm.  For those who have a bit more to give, tickets are $500-$1000. So mark you calendars for this exciting not-to-miss event!

All photos by James Prinz courtesy School of the Art Institute of Chicago

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Stephanie Speak/Harvard Bound!

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As I mentioned in my previous post, I was going to be traveling to the east coast to one of the nation's top universities for a debate tournament, and that university was Harvard! The speech and debate tournament at Harvard over President's Day weekend is the biggest and hardest tournament in the country. So many great things happen at Harvard, the education of tomorrow's leaders, and even the creation of Facebook by Mark Zuckerberg. My partner and I usually do well at our local tournaments, so we expected to go to Harvard and not do well at all. The competition is tougher, and a lot of the schools had more developed debate programs. We were, essentially, going for the experience. When we went to Harvard, we did a lot of exploring! We both loved the campus! Then our debate rounds started and we ended up advancing from the rounds with 90 teams to the rounds with 32, which is where we lost. We were so surprised we advanced at all. We went and tried our hardest to do the best we could and all of our hard work paid off. We already set our goal for next year; to win the Harvard tournament! After this experience, we think that anything is possible if we put our minds to it. 

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Students Are Amazing At Walter Payton College Prep!

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Most of you know that giving back to students is a top priority in my life.
Recently I was honored to be a guest presenter at Walter Payton College Prep. Yes, the same and only school that the Chinese President visited on his trip to Chicago. My program was on "The History of Fashion" which was very well received by the amazing students. They knew the answers to every question I asked on fashion. I must say I was pleasantly surprised to see how many answers came from the male students!  Very fashion forward, guys. Yes, guys are obviously interested and listening to what we women are discussing although they pretend to be bored!

I am pictured above with  my teen blogger, Stephanie, who helped make this all happen!

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Fashion Week and Clutches: Smaller Bags are Back

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BCBG. New York Fashion Week handbag trends from the runway for fall 2011Credit: Getty Images


If you're wiped out from carrying around heavy over-sized handbags the past few seasons, we've got some good news! This Fashion Week in New York, designers sent a surplus of Clutches down the runway.  So, if you're in the market for a new bag, consider lightening the load and go for a stylish clutch bag instead.

There's still a way to carry all your favorite personal items and fit them in a clutch - not all clutches are miniature! Although  Kim Kardashian usually sports over-the-top handbags, she's been seen with a cute Balenciaga Giant Clutch. The "Oversized Clutch" is a fantastic way to compromise style without losing the storage for your everyday essentials.

Check out the Book of the Month & Daily News Clutches from Kate Spade.  These clutches are designed to look like books of Classic Literature right off the shelves.  Just because your bag is smaller, it doesn't mean your style has to be!   Natalie Portman carried the "Lolita" clutch at the premier of Black Swan last Fall.

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Spring 2011 Fashion: The Return of Bell Bottoms

 

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It's back to the 1970's with statement pants. Say goodbye to skinny jeans and hello to bell bottoms! I know everybody loves to show off their body in tight skinny jeans but believe me, bell bottoms are just as fun. They seem to give everyone an elegant look while adding length to the body. Modernize the look with sky high platform heels and a loose fitting blouse. You can't go wrong this spring if you have a pair of great bell bottoms and some high wooden platform sandals. Even though you may be used to skinny jeans, be daring enough to embrace the 70's all over again to take part in an era that is full of interesting styles.

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

 

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Victoria Beckham and Kate Middleton:Fashionista Meets Royalty

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Victoria Beckham, the former Posh Spice, and wife of David Beckham has now made a name
for herself in the fashion industry in just a little over the past two years. Most recently we have seen Gwyneth Paltrow, Drew Barrymore and Cameron Diaz walk the red carpet in her designs. Being pregnant with the couples' fourth child has stopped her from continuously working on her new line, as the fall collection was a success. We saw many draped dresses from black and loose fitting skin toned dresses to bright red and yellow. Beckham still made room for her signature fitted dresses, using silk snake prints, pleating, and A lined gowns.

Most recently has Victoria Beckham caught the attention of Kate Middleton, who is scheduled to marry Prince William on April 29th, making it the wedding of the century. Both Beckham and Middleton have an outstanding eye for fabulous fashion, so it is not a surprise that the two petite British woman have made contact. It has been confirmed that Beckham has sent Middleton a requested selection of her designs but it is still a guessing game as if a wedding dress will be in the making by Beckham. Rumors will continue to evolve, because English woman can definitely keep a secret.


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Lola Talk/Backpacks!! Carryin' A Load In Style....

(Everyone carries backpacks...kids, teens, and adults...as my teen blogger Lola expresses; they not only utilitarian but now a very stylish accessory..check out what the teens carry with these loads of style...not too heavy, I hope!)Photo on 2011-02-17 at 22.46.jpg

Yo, it's Lo. Backpacks! Being in high school, I see thousands of different backpacks a day. We all know what the purpose of a backpack is, but they are stylish too. Since I have to wear a uniform everyday, my backpacks add a little color to my outfit. I know I have my bag on my back 24/7, what about you?

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Spring Fashion: A Pop of Color

 

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With a dose of warmer weather in Chicago, women are beginning to think spring by adding a sprinkle of color to their wardrobe. Whether it's a colorful bag, scarf, shoes, or even hair highlights, we've been seeing bursts of color popping up everywhere. Even Michelle Obama recently was seen on the Today Show wearing a black and white polka dotted dress with some yellow heels and a pink/orange belt, both excellent pops of color. So is all of this wishful thinking or is spring just around the corner?
(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

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Dog Day Afternoon: Doggy Dos (and Don'ts) At Westminster Dog Show 2011

And the winner for this year's Best in Show at the famed Westminster 2011 was a darling exotic Scottish Deerhound named Hickory but when it came to doggy style...well believe me...this young lass had plenty competition! On this day fashion and pampering has really gone to the dogs!     (photos courtesy of Los Angeles Times)

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Emilio Pucci: Spring 2011

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Many celebrities have been seen wearing Emilio Pucci. With the Grammy's just ending, we saw J-Lo, Ciara, Eva Longoria, and Lea Michele all in Pucci.

Emilio Pucci's Spring 2011 collection brought a sense of excitement to Milan Fashion week with sexy shapes, psychedelic prints and lace-up boots. Under the creative direction of Peter Dundas, Pucci designs aren't scared of showing a little skin or attitude as shown by the plunging necklines and high hems. The outfits were all accessorized with satchel bags, bandanas and understated jewelry. Is Pucci's Spring 2011 collection luring you in?

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

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Grammys 2011: Fashion Shockers!

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The 2011 Grammys were certainly the most colorful award show yet! There were lovely gowns and dapper suits, but there were also some shocking looks that made the night memorable. Nicki Minaj wore an all leopard ensemble and a whimsical wig that I'm sure no one will forget. She is always over the top but somehow this works for her. Another Red Carpet shocker was Lady Gaga, but I wouldn't quite call her look, a "look." She made her Red Carpet entrance in an egg with her entourage carrying her. 
Along with all the zany outfits at the 2011 Grammys, there was lots of drama surrounding the event. The week prior to the show Rihanna agreed to have the domestic abuse restraining order lifted from Chris Brown so he would not have any issues attending award shows in the future. There was also a huge buzz about Justin Bieber being nominated for Best New Artist and everyone thought that was a sure win for him. But, when Esperanza Spalding snagged the award everyone was shocked! Blogs went up right away, Twitter went crazy, and everyone expressed on their Facebook status how they felt he was robbed of his award. Although he didn't take home best New Artist, Justin Bieber looked adorable in an all white tux, black bow tie, and white sneakers. Check out photos of Bieber and more at the 2011 Grammys here!

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Stephanie Speak/Prep Star!

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Next week I'll be heading to the east coast for a debate tournament at one of the nation's top universities, so I'm taking this as the perfect opportunity to add a little prep to my wardrobe. Collegiate inspired looks always make the wearer look smart and sophisticated. It's easy to find a vintage-looking t-shirt or jacket from your favorite university at Forever 21 or in your parents' closets; just pair it with a pair of nice jeans and you'll look great. Clean lines, cable knits, and nice framed glasses are a wonderful way to take your collegiate t-shirt from cute to wow! This is my favorite look and I'm always looking for a well fitting button down or crew neck sweatshirt. It's the perfect way to be understated and stylish!

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SpiritHoods: Animal Hats

 

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Living in Chicago, I know how cold the weather can get. Everyone who is smart, will leave their house with a hat on. However, instead of the usual trapper hats, I've been seeing a lot of people wearing animal hats. Mostly hats with cat ears. The more popular ones are called SpiritHoods. They seem to be a new trend amoung celebrities as well as people living downtown. Khloe Kardashian, Pink, and Vanessa Hudgens have all been seen wearing SpiritHoods. These furry animal hats come with paws (hand warmers) that extend from the hat. SpiritHoods rage from $139-$119. What do you think? Will you be seen sporting an animal inspired hat, or are you more traditional?

See SpiritHoods.com if you're interested in purchasing one of these fuzzy hats.

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

 

 

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Look Fabulous in a Down Economy: Affordable Tips From Cosmetic Surgeon, Dr. Robert Kotler (NO Knife!)

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Here I am, pictured with my friend, Dr. Robert Kotler.  Not only a friend, but one of my favorite cosmetic surgeons (no, he has never altered me, yet) and one of Oprah's favorites also. He has some excellent advice for all of us which doesn't require a knife. He lives in LA but grew up in Chicago. His book, "Secrets of a Beverly Hills Cosmetic Surgeon" continues to be a top seller. Pick it up for more info. Check out his website...Valentine's Day is coming up...why not treat yourself if you so desire... here are the basic affordable tips from the good doctor:

Consider filling injections, such as Restylane, Juvederm, Sculptra, Radiesse Artefill, and/or Botox Cosmetic or Dysport. 


Consider using Retin-A as a daily vitamin for the skin 


Use Moisturizers




Rag & Bone: Spring 2011

 

 

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Rag & Bone is a lifestyle brand, offering men's, women's, footwear and accessories collections which are available at high end boutiques and exclusive department stores worldwide. Designers David Neville and Marcus WainWright started off their Spring 2011 show with a white tailored pantsuit, one of their trademarks. White is a big color for Spring and their use of futuristic, military-grade fabrics continue to compell consumers. Both designers stretch themselves each season to make their brand appeal stronger then ever to the public. Even though some of their looks were a bit overdone, many men and women will want to look cool in spring with their fashions.

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano) 

 

 

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Jennifer Lopez Shows Sexy Legs in New Ad

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For quite some time now we have been in love with Jennifer Lopez because she was a beautiful Newly Wed and a fabulous Mommy. But Jennifer is certainly making a comeback in a big way! Along with American Idol, a new single, and a slue of other projects Lopez has partnered up with Gillette Venus as the first Global Ambassador. Lopez, 41, remade the "Venus" to help launch the Venus Goddess Fund For Education. The fund promotes female empowerment through education. The fund donates to several charities including Jennifer's own Maribel Foundation. Lopez's perfect legs are great for the campaign and her lifestyle embodies the ad's slogan, Reveal the goddess in You.

Check  the Ad out Here!

Photo Source: Overoll.com

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Does Sexy Sell...Indeed: Elisabetta Canalis For Cavalli

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Elisabetta Canalis has it all...the face, the body, a hot underwear campaign and of course, George Clooney. Just in time for Valentine's Day, the 31 year old beauty is the hot spokesbody (and face) for Cavalli's spring/summer 2011 underwear line. A favorite of Cavalli and why not...Elisabetta exudes sexy and classy!  It looks the the 3 C's are in the stars for this gorgeous gal...Canalis, Cavalli, and Clooney...and why not; it works!

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Lola Talk/Snow Days Rock:Blizzard Of 2011!

(For me, the blizzard of 2011 is a big inconvenience...cold, blustery, treacherous to name just a few descriptive words for my experience, but for my teen blogger, Lola, the big blizzard brought SNOW DAYS! What could be better to celebrate this historic storm in the life of a teen!)PA260473.JPG


Yo, it's Lo. SNOW DAYS! No school for the past two days, CPS schools closed for the first time in 12 years, it doesn't get much better then this! Just chilling with my best friends. This is how we rock our snow days...movies, TV, sleep, food, hangin' with my dog....what a life!  More snow...bring it on...in my life, snow days rock!  How did you spend your day?


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Barrettes and Bobby Pins : Hair Styles

 
 
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Barrettes and bobby pins were once considered the accessory of little old ladies and little kids. However, they are now seen on teens, celebrities and the spring fashion runways! Everyone is showing up in either barrettes or bobby pins and looking very chic. According to the Wall Street Jounal article, "Barrettes: Dowdy No More," Spring 2011 trends include:
 
  • Hand crafted bobby pins or barrettes
  • Barrettes that pin back loose wind-swept side parts
  • Crystallized/artistic looking barrettes at the base of a pony tail

People can look innocent, sophisticated, and artistic while still being chic at the same time. Rihanna likes to wear very big, crystallized barrettes on the side of her hair. Are barrettes too innocent looking for you, or are you willing to try to bling up your hair?

Please see the attached link to read the full article from The Wall Street Journal.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703555804576102253770746310.html

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

 

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5 Reasons Katie Holmes Is The New Fresh Face for Ann Taylor

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Move over Heidi Klum...the new fresh face for Ann Taylor's 2011 spring campaign is Katie Holmes!  

1. Katie will attract a HIPPER and younger consumer for Ann Taylor (necessary for today)
2. She is STUNNING!
3. She personifies Ann Taylor..chic and smart
4. Katie's image is always in the limelight (she's married to Tom Cruise, of course!)
5. Katie represents youth...most important of all!

I think it's a brilliant move for Ann Taylor, a brand that is currently in a phase of reinvention. This A-list girl is a great choice...what do you think?

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Vera Wang: Kohl's Collection

 

Many designers step away from their high fashion roots and design for more middle to low income consumers who want to look stylish as well. Vera Wang is best known for her stunning wedding dresses, but she has been designing for Kohls for awhile now. Her line is called SimplyVera Vera Wang. She has a Winter 2011 collection and is now showcasing her Spring 2011 collection. New arrivals for spring will start appearing in stores this February and March. So for those of us who can't afford spending a huge amount of money on designer clothes, we can just go to Kohls and get great stylish looks for cheap! We all love great looks for less, so what do you think of Vera Wang's line at Kohls?

Please visit Kohls.com/verawang to see fresh new items every month!

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

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Stephanie Speak/Top 5 Guilty Pleasures of Teens

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(My teen blogger, Stephanie, shares some of this season's must-haves for teens...as we know, trends come and go so these are her top 5 she's observed at her high school!)


Teens are always trying to find ways to define their own personal style, but there are a few trends that teens can't help but mix into their wardrobe.


1. Military Inspired Clothing- they add a fun, edgy flair to any outfit!

2. Boyfriend jeans- the most comfortable pair of jeans you'll ever wear!

3. Oversized scarfs- great way to add that extra something to a white tee and cardigan!

4. Chukka Boots- make even the simplest outfit look like you spent hours putting it together!

5. Statement jewelry- the most interesting way to catch someone's eye! 

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Trapper Hat : In or Out?

 
 
 
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Recently, the New York Times gave a list of top ten trends from 2010 that they wanted to go away. One of the trends on their list was the Trapper Hat. Living in Chicago, I see them everywhere. I personally love them and will not go outside without mine. Wheather it's faux fur or real fur, everyone claims this accessory keeps them very warm and cozy in our near freezing temperatures. Celebrities as well as people around school and downtown Chicago have been spotted wearing them. Everyone loves them! So what do you think? Are they as IN as they were two years ago, or are they out? 
(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)
 
Please see the link below on the article from the New York Times on their top ten trends from 2010 that they want to go away.

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Lady Gaga: Nominated for Best and Worst Dressed Grammys 2010

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They are on the way! The Grammy's will air February 13, 2011 on CBS! This award season has been great so far but the Grammy's is not your usual black tie event and celebs tend to have a lot more fun playing dress up. One celeb who has mastered that art of "playing dress up" is Lady Gaga. Last year I nominated her for best and worst dressed of the Grammy's. I love her since of style and that she is willing to take risks. While her red carpet Armani Prive look worked well, her performance outfit was a bit over the top. My ultimate pics for best dressed for the night were Taylor Swift and Jennifer Hudson. Last year, Jennifer debuted her new Weight Watchers body at the Grammy's and has been dropping pounds ever since! She is looking great and I can't wait to see what she looks like this year!

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Spring 2011 Fashion: Gucci

 

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"I pushed the accelerater on the provocation," Frida Giannini stated. As the creative director for Gucci, Giannini sported a Spring 2011 collection that caught everyone's attention. Gucci is most well known for their handbags and bringing the glamour to fashion. With slicked back hair, red glossy lips, and bright vibrant colors, Giannini is crediting the late-seventies for her bold color palette, according to Style.com. This spring, bring out your vibrant dresses, safari jackets, silk jumpsuits, suede shoes and fringe to make a bold statement at school or work. Girls looking to get in on Spring's 1970's action will definitely find inspiration/options from Giannini. What will you be wearing this Spring?

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

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Da Bears, Da Cold, Da Fashion: Looking Sexy and Chic On Game Day!

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It's game day!  You want to feel hot,hot, hot..but the thermometer reads oh so COLD! These sexy bikini-clad girls might look hot posing in frigid weather but we sensible fashionistas attending the game have a few fashion tips. Blustery wind, cold temperatures and long hours of sitting and cheering for our Bears is not the best recipe for looking cool but check out a few great finds for looking hot in our cold climate. Long underwear in fashionable animal print, cute polar fleece pieces by Strong Wear, adorable sexy warm boots, and a great moisturizer like Hope In A Jar by Philosophy all provide the perfect formula for looking chic in our challenging elements. Enjoy the game and GO BEARS!

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Kim Kardashian: Skechers Super Bowl Ad

 

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While most of you are busy watching the Super Bowl, the other part of the population will be looking forward to all of the ads in between the game! The Super Bowl is the perfect time to get people's attention while people are really glued to their T.V.'s. In that case, it only makes sense that Skechers would have Kim Kardashian, one of the most popular celebrities, as their new pitch person for Sketchers ShapeUps. Kim will definitely be noticed and remembered while having people all over the world drooling over her and her new Sketcher ShapeUps, making them forget about the big game for a second. What do you think? Are you more interested in the Super Bowl, or the ads?

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

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Michelle Obama: Lady In Red

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Photograph by: Jim Young, Reuters



First Lady Michelle Obama looked fabulous as she and President Obama welcomed Chinese President Hu Jintao to a state dinner at the White House on Wednesday. The red dress was a perfect choice as the color symbolizes joy and good luck in traditional Chinese culture.  Also, important to note, the red silk organza gown designed by Sarah Burton of the London house Alexander McQueen makes Michelle Obama a major fashionista in the eyes of Hollywood starlets, socialites and royalty. I thought she looked wonderful!  Other famous fashionistas invited to the dinner were Vogue editor Anna Wintour and fashion designer Vera Wang.

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Stephanie Speak/Jennifer Hudson:Fit and Fab!

(All my readers know I'm a big supporter of women who show their beauty in all shapes and sizes but my teen blogger Stephanie reports on the beautiful Jennifer

Hudson and her amazing transformation!)


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Former American Idol castoff Jennifer Hudson is now truly America's dream girl. After dropping from a size 16 to 4, Hudson is looking and feeling better than ever. After going through many ups and downs, including the horrendous 2008 murders of her mother, brother, and nephew in their south Chicago home, and the 2009 birth of her son David, Jennifer is really an inspiration to us all. Through all of this, she held her head high, and kept looking to the future. She also never compromised style despite her fluctuating weight. Jennifer looked great before and after her weight loss, showing confidence and playing up her body type; just because you may not be the size you want to be doesn't mean you can't look amazing! She is even the new face of Weight Watchers, making her someone we should really watch out for. I'm sure she'll be doing great things in the future! 


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Winter 2011: Sleeveless Chic

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Although the weather seems to be very cold in Chicago, women are still opting to wear sleeveless. Kathy Lee Gifford, best known for her talkshow with Regis Philbin, is one person who seems to wear sleeveless a lot. Despite the weather, it certainly has become a big fashion trend. Take a look at the picture gallery to see some of our favorite celebrities looking chic in sleeveless.

What do u think? Is it too cold for you to go without sleeves?  

(Posted by Marycke Gramillano)

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Kate Middleton Chooses Gown Designer Bruce Oldfield...We Think!



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It looks like the lovely Princess and Bride-To-Be Kate Middleton is closer to choosing her designer for the most important piece of this royal shindig....THE GOWN!  Kate, her mom and sister were spotted at Bruce Oldfield's boutique over the weekend. We heard that the designer greeted the trio personally at his shop in London, spending about an hour and a half, and a source says that Kate has pretty much made up her mind! Oldfield was a favorite of Princess Diana and has also created Red Carpet pieces for celebs including Rhianna and Sienna Miller...seems like an appropriate and glamourous choice to me! The brunette beauty with a body to kill for would look fabulous in any dress she wears...she is truly a vision of elegance and perfect sense of style. Congratulations to Bruce Oldfield for scoring the gig of the decade...the final word is still mum!

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Spring 2011 Sexy Shoes : In or Out?

 

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Designers anywhere from Lanvin, YSL and Diane Von Furstenberg are coming up with similar styles of shoes for this spring. Spring 2011 shoes are all about strappy, chunky, platform sandals. If you are wearing a pair of shoes that has one if not all of those aspects, then you are right on track for spring. Bright, vibrant colors are taking the lead as well as heels with a substantial width, not skinny stilettos.As we see more and more wide leg pants for Spring 2011, we will see higher heels with suede, leather, or the newest trend, wood.  Many of the shoes for spring will be made of wood, light or dark, all encompassing a strappy design with a unique edge. So will you stay with the gladiators or get sexy, strappy shoes for spring?

Posted by Marycke Gramillano

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Pregnant Celebrities: Fab Mommies of 2011

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There are so many pregnant celebs this year that I am starting to believe they are more fertile than the rest of us! Celebs are announcing pregnancies left and right and the baby bump has even become a trend on the red carpet! Natalie Portman and Jane Krakowski were just spotted at the Golden Globes sporting the full on baby bump underneath their gorgeous gowns. Actresses like Nicole Kidman, Kate Hudson, and Tia Mowry have also been spotted styling their baby bump with beautiful dresses and trendy tees. Getting pregnant has been harder for some couples than others. Mariah Carey and Giuliana Rancic are now both expecting after a long process and Mariah is expecting twins! Other reality TV stars who will be welcoming motherhood are Kim Zolciak and Rachel Zoe of the Bravo network.  There will be so many fabulous mommies in Hollywood by the end of 2011 and I'm excited to see the beautiful babies!

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Golden Globes 2011: Barbara's Pics for Best and Worst

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The 2011 Golden Globes were certainly a night to remember! The stars on the red carpet tried to stray away from the usual black and surprisingly there was lots of color and even more skin! There were lots of backless dresses including my personal pick for best dressed, Anne Hathaway! She was stunning in an Armani Prive long puff sleeve dress. A close runner up for best dressed was Olivia Wilde in a Marchesa ball gown and Christian Louboutin shoes. It was a lot of dress but she certainly sparkled.
Olivia's dress followed on of the many trends going on this season. There were lots of blush tones, reds and greens on the red carpet. There was glitz and glamor but some stars went for a more sensuous look with a one shoulder dress. The one shoulder dress looked lovely on Mila Kunis, Megan Fox, Julianna Moore and even Natalie Portman, who rocked a one shoulder maternity dress.
We also had our usual favorites like Halle Berry who looked amazing in a very sexy Nina Ricci gown. It had different lengths and worked well with her small frame. I must admit that the enctrance maker for the evening was January Jones in a red Versace gown. She is the new face for the designers clothing so of course her dress was cut in all the right places. Also in Versace was Angelina Jolie. She looked great in a green beaded dress. My favorite couple for the night was Catherine Zeta Jones and Micheal Douglas. The pair looked perfect! Justin Beiber even looked great! He paired his tuxedo with a cool pair of tennis shoes and even got a hair cut for the event!
Although there were quite a few "hits" on the red carpets there were some "misses" as well. Christina Hendricks, who usually looks so fab, wore a huge bow on one shoulder of her dress that looked as if it wanted to eat her alive. Sandra Bullock, America's sweetheart, tried to roll all the trends into one big ball with her unflattering bangs and a Jenny Packham dress. It was nude, with sequins, and one shoulder. The look seemed to be hiding the person we all love.  Although I did not love Sandra's look she was upstaged for worst dressed by Helena Bonham. Helena wore mismatched shoes and a Vivienne Westwood dress that looked as if the tulle was growing out of it! Check out the photos from last night!



Photo Source: theexaminer.com justjared.buzznet.com

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Golden Globes: Best and Worst Dressed of Golden Globes Past


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They are back!  The 68th Annual Golden Globes are tonight at 7pm an NBC. Although I am looking forward to host , Ricky Gervais, I am more excited about the red carpet! Stars like Penelope Cruz and Cameron Diaz have  dazzled us on the carpet for the last few years. I am excited to see who will be a hit this year. Natalie Portman of Black Swan is nominated for a few awards and if she looks half as lovely as she did in the film she will be tonight's best dressed.  Hopefully you will tune in tonight but until then let's check out some of the best and worst dressed of Golden Globes Past. Check back here as we will cover the post carpet of the Golden Globes!

Image Source: Fabsugar.com and thebosh.com

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Stephanie Speak/The King's Speech:Triumph Despite Disability!

(My teen blogger Stephanie recently saw the King's Speech and shared her view on this uplifting film)

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The past week, I was able to take a break for a little and go see The King's Speech with my dad and sister. The King's Speech presents a well-crafted and true story of struggle, friendship, and ultimate triumph. It came as no surprise to find out that the movie was nominated for an impressive seven Golden Globes. Colin Firth depicts King George IV, who struggled with a speech impediment since he was a little boy. As king, one has to speak publicly on a rather regular basis, which, as I can only imagine, would be frightening if one had a stammer. The King's Speech gives the audience the feeling that anything is possible; King George IV worked for so long to achieve his goal, showing us that we should never give up on things we want. I suggest that anyone looking for an uplifting and extraordinary story see The King's Speech.


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Lola Talk/Sex, Drugs 'n Rock 'n Roll:Trippin' in TV Land!

(Teen blogger Lola has some interesting insights on TV viewing...I have to honestly say these shows are not on my radar but from this teen's description, I might pop a bowl of popcorn and check them out!)
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Yo, it's Lo, sometimes I like to chill with friends and watch our favorite TV shows. Check out my top favorite shows, The First 48, Steve Wilkos, Runaway Squad, Teen Mom, and Jersey Shore. The First 48 is about investigating homicides, Steve Wilkos is an ex cop who turned into a TV show host and he's really interested in helping teens, Runaway Squad is about helping and finding runaway teens. I hope someday I study criminology in college and these shows really influence me. Teen Mom is pretty self explanatory, to some people it may glamorize being a teen mom, but I think it really shows the struggles. And last, Jersey Shore, is just a sexy, entertaining show with a lot of gossip, fashion, and fun! So take a peek and let me know what you think. 

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Natalie Portman Goes Topless: New Face of Miss Dior Cherie

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On December 9th Christian Dior Parfums revealed Natalie Portman as the new face of Miss Dior Cherie. The chic ad displays Portman topless but looking very angelic. The Dior brand has also designed a pair of vegan shoes for the actress.
Portman is best known for gracing magazine covers like Bazaar as well as shaving her head for her role in "V For Vendetta." She currently stars in the movie "Black Swan" which has been a box office hit! It is also nominated for tons of awards including the upcoming Golden Globes. The lovely actress has so many wonderful things going on right now. Her journey is exciting to follow. Currently, Natalie and her fiance Benjamin Millepied are expecting their first child! Congratulations to the young couple!

Image Source: Celebrities09pics.blogspot.com, theblogprof.blogspot.com, yuvaz.com, hollywoodnews.com, gleekifi.com

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Street Fashion : What are YOU wearing?

   

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It's hard to dress well while keeping warm in this insane Chicago weather, but it seems to always get done. As I was walking around the streets of downtown Chicago, Wicker park, and my school (The Illinois Institute of Art), I realized that it's hard to find someone who doesn't have something trendy on. With stores like Forever 21 and H&M, we are in a world of fast fashion. It is easy for anyone to become trendy in an instant because the trends keep pouring in at cheap prices.

  As I was people watching, I noticed the majority of Chicagoans had long black winter coats or leather jackets. Uggs, Hunter rain boots, or military styled shoes are by far the most popular shoes this winter as well as long, oversized scarves and interesting hats. Amoung all these trends, I did happen to find some unique pieces such as oversized hair bows and small scarves. A lot of people have style in Chicago, and a lot don't. After seeing so many oversized scarves, the little ones tied tightly around the neck seem the newest. As Barbara says, "it is a breath of fresh air to see something new after constantly seeing the same trends over and over again."

Even celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow and the Olsen twins are sporting similar looks to people here in Chicago. It seems as though celebrities and consumers alike are all revolving around the same fashion trends. It's interesting that no matter what status you are, trends are trends and that's that. Are you out in the winter with your Uggs or Hunter boots?  

Posted By Marycke Gramillano 

 

 

 

 

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Victoria Beckham : Handbag Collection- A Replacement for the Birkin?

"24 Hours in the life of Victoria," doesn't that sound lovely? That allurting theme is the central focus around Victoria Beckham's handbag collection. Victoria Beckham, former Spice girl and wife of David Beckham, has started designing handbags in addition to her clothing designs! Victoria Beckam's first collection will offer 6 styles, prices ranging from $1,800- $13,950 in many different finishes.

Possessing hundreds of "IT" handbags already, including almost 100 Birkin Bags, Victoria Beckham is attempting to ultimately replace the costly Birkin bags with her own unique designs, inspired by Ms. Beckham's sophisticated, polished look. Her lovely handbags will be available at Neiman Marcus Los Angeles, Bergdorf Goodman, and net-a-porter.com. Her structured, classic designs will soon take the world by storm as every celebrity and consumer who can afford her handbags, will feel themselves urging for a Posh experience.

With original Hermes Birkin Bags costing anywhere from $5,300 to $50,000 and up, consumers will be sure to ditch the Birkin and get with the Beckham. People will re-evalute just how much they are willing to spend on a designer handbag. According to Instyle.com, Victoria was heard saying, "A Beckham can replace your Birkin." So what do you think? Can a Beckham replace YOUR Birkin?

 

Published by Marycke Gramillano

 

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Jimmy Choo 15th Anniversary: Launch of the First Fragrance

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The prestigious shoe designer, Jimmy Choo, is commemorating its 15th Anniversary with the launch of its first fragrance. Usually know for its sky scraping stilettos and must have handbags, the brand is hoping this new scent will complete the "Jimmy Choo Woman." CEO of Jimmy Choo, Tamara Mellon expresses, "My lifelong dream is to fully accessorize the woman, and fragrance is an integral part of the modern wardrobe."
The scent contains a blend of Indonesian Patchouli, tiger orchid and sweet toffe brown.  It will be released January 15th, 2011 exclusively at Saks Fifth Avenue. The price is slated to start at $95 which is considered fair for the brand. Jimmy Choo is more afford-ably known for its partnerships with H&M, Ugg, and Hunter rain boots.  Luckily this must have is just in time for Valentine's Day! It is certainly not too soon to drop a hint.

Image Source: frillr.com, go2beauty.blogspot.com, geekshoes.com, and shoewawa.com

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Lola Talk/Shoes = Modern Romance: I Love Shoes!

(All fashionistas love shoes and my teen blogger Lola is no exception! Lola has to wear a uniform to school so shoes give her a chance to show her own unique style.)

All shoes styled by Lola! 

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Yo, it's Lo! I don't think any one can have enough shoes. Shoes rock the outfit. At my school, we are required to wear a uniform everyday, but we have our choice in shoes. Shoes are the one thing my school lets me choose to wear, so I take advantage of that. From casual to designer shoes, you'll always find something you love, guaranteed! I took some pictures of shoes that my best friend Lexii and I own, so take a look, and let me know what you think. DUCES <3 

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Spring Collections : Alexander McQueen's Legacy Lives On!

 

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The once talented, innovative, strange, intriguing man that's Lady Gaga's favorite designer is...

 ALEXANDER MCQUEEN!

Alexander McQueen was known for his outrageous fashion shows and constant unique fashion sense. With his armadillo shoes and crazy cut out outfits that Lady Gaga is known for wearing, his fashion label is an inspiration and attracts the eyes of many men and women all over the world. For Spring 2011 RTW, McQueen's legacy lives on in the name of Sarah Burton, the new creative director for Alexander McQueen. In the collection, the fashion pieces revolve all around our Earth. Through notes, it was written that "McQueen explained that he had been pondering Charles Darwin, the survival of the fittest, and the deleterious results of industrialization on the natural world."

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Burton stayed with McQueen's signature frock coats, skinny-leg pants, and hourglass silhouettes, but the wood-print tailoring was much more fluid. She is the perfect person to grab hold of McQueen's legacy and make it prosper and survive for years to come. Bright, multicolored allover prints, leggings, and cocoon dresses were a big hit--a general trend emerging from London's young designers. Sarah Burton's goal is to satisfy consumers and to potentially sell this Spring. This collection, with its color, attention to detail, prints, leggings, cocoon dresses, ankle-wrapped shoes, and eased-up tailoring, looks like it'll be one of the best selling collections yet. More to get excited about for spring! We'll see if these new creative designs last in the eyes of the consumers...

Posted by Marycke Gramillano(Photo/Info Credit: Style.com) 

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Anorexic French Model Isabelle Caro Passes But Her Message Lives On

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French Model Isabelle Caro died of uncertain causes this past November. Family and friends say that she was hospitalized for acute respiratory issues after returning home from a job in Tokyo. It has taken quite some time for this information to become public, but she is commonly known for her her campaign against anorexia; a disease she struggled with herself. She posed nude in an anti-anorexia ad in hopes of saving others from this disease. When asked about the ad she expressed, "I thought this could be a chance to  us my suffering to get a message across, and finally put an image on what thinness represents and the danger it leads to- which is death." The ad that was released in 2007 was banned in several countries, but her message has certainly reached others and aided in saving the lives of others.


Photo Source: nynewstime.com, oursworldnews.blogspot.com, live.drjays.com

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Celebrating A Star-Studded Year:What You Wear Says Who You Are!

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Stephanie Speak/Brave New Color For A Bright New Year!

(My teen blogger Stephanie discovered an exciting new color for a bright start to New Year 2011!)

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The New Year is less than 48 hours away! And many people are feeling like it's time to refresh their wardrobe; what better way to do it than with the hottest colors for spring 2011. Teenagers have always been fans of bright colors, and those are around to stay for the new season. Pantone Fashion and Home announced that the color of 2011 is honeysuckle, "a brave new color, for a brave new world." A great color to enter the new decade wearing; it's bright and welcoming. I know what my new year's resolution is, to wear honeysuckle well and often! Will you make this your resolution too?

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Spring 2011 : Marc Jacobs

 

 

 

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Anything Marc Jacobs touches seems to turn to gold. Not only does he have his own lines: Marc Jacobs and Marc by Marc Jacobs, he is also the creative director for Louis Vuitton. He is the go-to guy for stylish, sophisticated pieces with an edgy twist. Anyone who's anybody is sporting something from Marc Jacobs, especially this spring. Whether it's his more affordable line, Marc by Marc Jacobs, or his pricey line, Marc Jacobs, celebrities as well as highschool and college kids can't get enough of the brand.

For spring 2011, it's all about going back to the 1970's with frizzy hair, wide-legged pants, gold glittering platform shoes and oversized flower corsages as seen on Style.com. For spring, it's all about color, prints, halter dresses, seductive cuts/slits and yes, HOT PANTS. I will definitely be around sporting some tight short shorts this spring/summer and can't wait to see what others are going to try to pull off. Say goodbye to cleavage and hello to legs and butt! Will you be sporting the look of the 70's this spring?

Posted by Marycke Gramillano

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"These Boots Were Made for Walking"

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Although we love our classic Ugg boots to keep warm, there have been some great styles this season to spice up your boot life! Refinery29 came up with some great looks that can inspire a few boot looks for you. Pairing casual boots with a lovely coat and great hat have certainly been a hit this season. The more rugged look with a classic boot has been a great look also. A celeb favorite has been The Chanel Biker Boot. It is metal plated with a small heel and has been spotted on some of my favorite celebrities; Lady GaGa, Beyonce, and Russel Simmons niece Angela Simmons.

Image Source:
refinery29.com, necolebitchie.com, coolspotters.com

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Lola Talk/Holiday Party Fashion!

(Everyone looks forward to New Year's Eve parties and my teen blogger Lola is displaying some of her unique fashion ideas along with some more traditional finds(and bargains) at Forever 21!)
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Yo, it's Lo, and as we all know, New Year's Eve is coming up. I'm sure everyone has their own parties to attend, when it comes to celebrating,  casual or fancy, we all
need that one special holiday outfit!  Hopefully you have yours in mind, but it's always fun to browse for more... I came across some great Forever 21 holiday dresses; here take a look! And of course, I put together a couple outfits for my friends. =D

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Nicole Richie's Wedding Dress

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Nicole Richie and Joel Madden recently exchanged their vows at what looked to be a lovely wedding ceremony. Photos of the wedding have been very scarce but we have found some exclusives from the German Gossip Magazine "IN." You can see one of the three Marchesa gowns Richie wore that night with 100 yards of tulle and a sleeve embroidered with the couples names on it. The tulle also detached for a reception friendly dress that she could party in. Wedding talk is getting me extremely excited for the royal wedding! Be sure to stay tuned, to my blog as I will do my best to keep you updated!

Image Source: pwspoilers.com and styleite.com 

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January Jones: Naked In Versace's Ads

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"I am always on the lookout for the next Versace blonde...and in January I feel I have found a perfect Versace woman for the 21st century," said Donatella Versace. "She s chic and elegant but deeply sensual too." The pic above, photographed by famed photographer Mario Testino, features the 32-year-old star wearing nothing except for a Versace bag and a pair of heels. Yes, January Jones is a beautiful woman, and I especially love watching her play housewife on Mad Men. What do you think of January's Versace S/S 2011 ad campaign?

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Little Black Dress Launched: Death of Blake Edwards

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I don't know any woman who enjoys fashion who hasn't been influence by fashion icon Audrey Hepburn. Yes, we know Givenchy dressed her for the movie "Breakfast at Tiffany's" but it was the very talented director Blake Edwards(husband of Julie Andrews), who died today, who hired her for the role, that will forever be etched into the mind of women everywhere. And what about the movie "10"? How many of us wanted to wear cornrows like Bo Derek (who Dudley Moore fantasized over).  Of course there were the Pink Panther movies and a long list of others. But, for me, I will always think of Audrey from Breakfast At Tiffany's when I slip into my "Little Black Dress".

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Lola Talk/Shop Your Closet!

(I know we all love to shop, but sometimes we have to be economical too...especially when your a teen and it's important to budget.  My teen blogger Lola knows that with a little extra thought, you can open up your own closet and create many different looks with clothes you already own! Check out what she put together without spending a penny!)
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Yo, it's Lo. Everyone has those days when they say to themselves, "I have nothing to wear". Well at least I know that happens to me at least once a week. But you can change that, easy! This is what I call "shopping in my closet." Yupp! I did exactly how it sounds. Its fun, easy, and you don't have to go too far =). I took some time and put a couple of outfits straight out of my closet together. From outfits, to pajamas, to some fun accessories, tell me what you think and hopefully this will inspire you to put some fun fits together. Saves a bunch of money too!

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Leopard Prints: Why we love them.

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Olivia Palermo in her leopard print shoes

 I know, I know... leopard prints again?

Even though we all constantly hear about leopard prints, they seem to never go out of style. This fall/winter, more than ever, leopard prints are back again and are being spotted in a variety of differnet forms. In the past, leopard prints have usually been seen on outerwear as well as tops for women. However, this past season, not only have leopard prints been spotted on clothing, they have also been seen on other forms of merchandise: umbrellas, socks for rainboots, tights, dog coats, pillows, scarves, etc.

 

For fall/winter 2010-2011, the leopard print can be considered as being a basic element especially when it comes to coats and dresses. Everything stands in personal taste and favorite colors. If properly worn and paired, leopard print can add style and a unique touch to any look without being overplayed or "cheap looking." Leopard prints are a fun and lovely way to dress up any casual outfit and add some pizazz to it.

 

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Taylor Swift Turns 21!

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Taylor Swift, turns 21 and I wonder what is on her birthday list. She got her first deal at 14, has had an album go quadruple-platinum, and even had astronaut Timothy Kopra take her album into outer space! With this and many more accomplishments, Taylor seems to be one of the stars that stays humble and grounded. She is usually known for her long curly locks, but has certainly made her mark in the music industry as well as the world of fashion. She has evolved from 'Comfy Boot Rocking Cowgirl' to 'Ultimate Style Maven.' Looking at past red carpets and paparazzi photos, you can certainly see the lovely transformation she is making. She always looks youthful yet chic and works her petite frame well. Check out our photos of Taylor's daily style and fashion evolution!

Photo Source: entertainmentwise.com, polyvore.com


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Stephanie Speak/Thrift Store Chic:Teens' Hidden Treasures!

(Teens have turned to thrift shops not only for economical purposes but also to express their creativity and individuality....see what teen blogger Stephanie has to say!)

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Chicago is home to many secrets and hidden treasures, including its many thrift stores. Thrift stores offer the buyer a unique look into the past. And they're cheap! Teenagers are always looking for a deal, and thrift stores offer a nice alternative to large chain stores. A high school sophomore goes to Milwaukee Avenue in Wicker Park to find an array of stores offering "a lot of variety, [that's] cheap, [and] accessible." While high school junior, Thea, says, "Your clothes have so much more character," when they're bought from resale shops. Don't let the idea of wearing others' clothes keep you from going to thrift stores. Missing buttons and holes are all things that can be fixed, and the repair will definitely add a touch of individuality to your pieces. The only downside to thrift stores, are there are no returns. So you buy, you love it! 

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Commando: second-skin panties, muffin-top begone legwear, bigger busts & much more!

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Would you like a solution to fix all your fashion emergencies? Do you want to know how to be red carpet ready this holiday season? I suggest you try the lingerie and accessory brand of choice of celebrities and stylists, and of course myself for one reason... her look's products really work!
To banish visible panty lines: go commando!
Fight muffin hips: wear commando legwear. 
Boost your bust: try cleavage cupcakes or takeouts ... and
To fix all your fashion faux pas: lowbeams, tophats, matchtips or matchsticks are the solution.

Yes, commando products have got you covered!

photos from: www.herlook.com

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Charitable Gifts: Give Something That Gives Back

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Tis the season to be jolly and although Mayor Daley has helped to make it chic in Chicago to embrace bike riding as a form of transportation, there are young women in Zambia who desperately need our help so they can also have bikes for transportation as well. They need transportation to go to school and do their chores and with the help of World Bicycle Relief your donation will help improve the attendance, grades, knowledge and confidence of these girls; helping to empower their communities.
There are many other ways to give a gift that spread to more than one person. Deck the halls with gifts from your favorite stores at igive.com. Shop online at over 700 stores and the site donates for each search and first purchase. So even your cashmere sweaters can give back to the charity of your choice. Everyone is looking for ways to spread joy this season and designer Zoe Chicco has created a sterling silver dog necklace that donates 20% of proceeds to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Marie Claire has featured a great collection of charitable gifts which include some of our favorite fashion finds! The Smashbox I wish pallete, TOMS silver women's glitter shoes, Shabby Apple Theresa bracelet, and Susan G. Koman for a cure breast cancer ornaments are a few of the lovely gifts you will find in their charitable gifts feature. One Hope Wines is also a great way to give back! Their selection of both Red and White wines are delicious, affordable, and a hit at holiday parties! One Hope Wines gives half of all proceeds to charity and they have great Holiday gift sets. So, this Holiday Season spread love in more ways than one by giving back.

Image Source: stephcupoftea.blogspot.com, marieclaire.com, onehopewines.com, zoechicco.com

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Lola Talk/My iPod:Music and Style Hook Up!

(Music plays a big part in teens' lives...it becomes a lifestyle and always includes fashion.  This is what my teen blogger, Lola has to say about her music tastes)

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Yo, it's Lo, and a major thing around the world(and my world) is music. Everyone has their favorite type of music when it comes to R&B, rap, jazz, hip-hop, rock, country, etc. I have mine and I'm sure you have yours. I am always listening to my iPod, and everywhere you go you see people listening to theirs. If I list all the artists on my iPod that would take.....FOREVER, but I do have my favorites =D. I love Roscoe Dash, Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, Young Money, Gucci Mane, Waka Flocka, Drake, 50 Cent, Usher, Trey Songz, T.Pain, Kalio, Kanye West, Twista, Chris Brown, Tyga, and as you can see, I can keep going. Not only are these artists talented in the music department, but they have fabulous swag too! That's only a small amount of my listening, but I would love to hear what's on your iPod.

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Name Plate Necklaces:Holiday Gift Idea Extraordinaire!

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If you're like me, the search for the perfect holiday gift is always on my mind this time of year.  Something fashionable(of course!)...something personal...something affordable...just something fabulous!  Well I think I found it...made popular again by Sex In The City's Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker), the name plate necklace or the "Carrie Necklace" as it is referred to today, is the "it" gift in my book. It was popular when I was in high school and now  celebrities including Jennifer Lopez, Madonna, Emma Roberts, Paris Hilton, Hillary Duff, Nicki Minaj, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Jessica Alba, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Pamela Anderson, Gwen Stefani to name a few, have revived the look!  Check out the gallery below and just google name plate neckace on the web so you or someone dear to you can be an "it" gal in time for holidays!

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The GRAMMY Nominations Concert Live!!


 
Today at 9p.m. on CBS, The Recording Academy will announce nominees for the 53rd Annual GRAMMY Awards with the "The GRAMMY Nominations Concert Live!! - Countdown To Music Biggest Night." This one-hour special will be live from Club Nokia in Los Angeles, and hosted by two-time GRAMMY winner LL Cool J. See feature performances by pop star Justin Bieber, rapper B.o.B., country artist Miranda Lambert, singer/songwriter Katy Perry, and many more GRAMMY winners will present awards. The 53rd Annual GRAMMY Awards will take place live from Staples Center in Los Angeles on Sunday, February 13, 2011, at 7p.m. on CBS. Tonight the road to the GRAMMYs begins!! Yes, fabulous fashions will be showcased, and I look forward to you sharing who makes your best dressed list... ???

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All that Glitters:"IN or OUT"

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The holiday's are approaching fast and its showing in the shoe world.  Designer brands like Christian Louboutin, Miu Miu, and even Steve Madden are jumping on the sparkle bandwagon.  Glitter and glitz are all the rage for the holidays!  What do you think, are glittery heels IN or OUT?

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Betsey Johnson's New Look


Spring 2011 Line

Big changes are coming to Betsey Johnson, LLC, and they have already hit the website!  Betsey's new site features a larger online store, and even a Head 2 Toe section of the website with assembled looks.  Recently, the designer brand appointed a new CEO, Susan Faulk, who plans to adjust Betsey's look.  Steve Madden, Ltd has also stepped in with a loan to help revamp retail sales.  Not to worry, Betsey Johnson is staying put as the company's head designer! Nonetheless, Faulk especially wants to alter Betsey Johnson dresses, which she claims look too "young" and are "a bit too short" in article by the Wall Street Journal.  By changing dresses and other Betsey styles, Faulk seeks to appeal to a wider age range of women.  It is hard to imaging changing Betsey's typical youthful, color palette and pop culture influenced designs without changing the brand itself.  Already, customers can buy a dress from the website and see similar styles of the same dress with longer hemlines.  However, Betsey Johnson herself is excited about the new management, and reassures that she will always remain true to the brand. 

Image sources: nymag.com, betseyjohnson.com

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New York Times Names Alexa Chung Fashions New "IT" Girl

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British and American television host, model, designer, and style maven are just the stepping stones in Alexa Chung's career. She has become a pop culture phenomenon by just being herself and everyone loves it! You may have seen her on the covers of many UK fashion, music and pop magazines, but she has also taken NYC by storm. The fashion news director for Teen Vogue, Jane Keltner de Valle states, "She has become the Kate Moss for this new generation."  Alexa is not only a muse of Karl Lagerfeld, she has also designed with Mulberry and is a Contribution editor for British Vogue.

Alexa Chung definitely marches to the beat of her own drum. When asked her fashion inspiration she says, "All of my beauty icons are men, it's about effortlessness. It's about looking underdone." In response to the cancellation of her 2009 MTV show, "It's On with Alexa Chung," she stated, "I think you do have to (make adjustments for an American audience). But I didn't, and that speaks volumes."

The 26 year old beauty is the youngest of four children and grew up in a home where fashion was no where near the top of the totem pole. She claims to have normal dreams like most young women her age. She wants children, a house and to enjoy life's small pleasures. Her next project it slated to appear Summer 2011 on PBS. "Thrift America" will be a television show that travels with Alexa on her search for vintage clothing! Can't wait to see!

Image Source:
Refinery29.com, fanpop.com, bunchbowlblog.com

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Lola Talk/Giving Thanks On Thanksgiving

(Teen Blogger Lola Talks...it makes me feel good to hear a teen give thanks and even include her mom!))

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Yo, it's Lo and right now it is Thanksgiving! I just got back from my grandma's and I'm stuffed. I'm thankful for my banana (crazy) family. And it really gave me the opportunity to look back and realize who I am really thankful for. Of course it's my BEST friends and my mama =). These people are irreplaceable and you'll never find another Lexii, Maya, or Mom! Personally I find me and my friends the craziest, most unique group. We are so tight and made BILLIONS of memories together and each one is worth remembering. I looked through some old photos and it just brought me back into the past. Just take a look at my friends, from wild hair, to crazy accessories, to hot lips; you tell me if you've ever seen better swag!!!

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Stephanie Speak/To Marry Or Not Marry

(Teen Blogger Stephanie Speaks)

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He gets down on knee, pulls a little box out of his pocket, looks you in the eyes and says the words every woman waits to hear her whole life, "Will you marry me?" The eagerness in his eyes pulls at your heart's strings, and you reluctantly reply, "Eh...no." Are those words becoming the words that only a few women wait to hear their whole lives? Is marriage becoming obsolete? According to a study conducted by TIME and Pew Research Center, 39% of Americans say it is.

In a society where it has become more acceptable to have kids, and carry on "marriage-like" relationships out of wedlock, it seems as though marriage is no longer the ultimate goal; marriage used to symbolize success, achieving the American dream. High school sophomore, Hannah, said, "People these days get very caught up in their careers and when you are searching very hard to find a job or something stable, especially with younger people, marriage and the idea of looking for love is being pushed away." While Yliana, another sophomore, says the opposite, "Marriage will always provide a strong foundation for family and benefits to each of the spouses." Naomi argues that "marriage itself may not be becoming obsolete, the idea of permanently settling down with someone might be." This leaves me feeling somewhat confused. I was never one to dream about finding my prince charming, so maybe I've always felt marriage was obsolete. By the time I'm ready to settle down, I think marriage will no longer be seen as a badge of honor, but rather as a lifestyle choice fit for few.

For more information on this topic check out the November 29th issue of TIME.

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Daniella Helayel: Likely to Design Kate Middelton's Royal Gown

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Daniella Helayel seems to be the designer that has snagged the wedding dress of the century! Kate Middleton adores the Brazilian designer and it has been mentioned that she would love for her to create her wedding dress. 

Daniella Helayel is the Brazilian designer behind the international fashion line, Issa. This high end line is popular among celebrities, royals, and socialites. Issa is well known for its feminine fit and dress-up dress-down approach toward women's clothing. The clothes are fabulously chic and effortlessly beautiful.  Helayel designs each piece with her Brazilian figure in mind. Her dresses have been described as comfortable yet sexy and elegantly timeless. In Helayel's most recent collections she uses lots of blacks and whites with bolts of colors for what she describes as a tropical thunderstorm.

 

Although Helayel is busy adding Royal Weddings to her  'To Do' list, she has also found time to partner with Bold2in1 for an Everyday Elegance campaign.  Helayel expresses, "Elegance is about being comfortable, it's thoughtless and means feeling good about yourself - that's where it starts."

 

Helayel's line, Issa, will also be adding accessories and home wares to its collections.  Maybe Kate will be adding that to her registry! 

 

Photo Source: dailymail.com. jblog.com, and life.com

 


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Holiday Must Haves: Glitz and Accessories!

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This Holiday Season is all about the Shimmer and Shine! Bright colors and metallic jackets are stand out pieces for Holiday parties. Even if you are someone who believes less is more, there are some great textured pieces for you! If you are determined to stick with all black, add a lace top or velvet blazer. If you really want to add some sparkle slick your hair back and add a jeweled hair piece. Faux fur and cashmere socks are fun accessories that have been a hit this season and I believe they are great to try for a daring look. My favorite Holiday look is from Alice and Olivia. Their 'Stacey Poof Skirt Party Dress' looks amazing paired with lace up booties and a faux fur stole. You can find more chic holiday looks at Intermix and Shopbop. Whatever you wear make sure you are the star this Christmas!

Image Source: Shopbop.com, intermixonline.com, shopnastygal.com, and studio 563.com.

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Does size matter? Big vs. Small Jewelry Trends

We've all seen it flooding the streets and runways, those big, bulky necklace chains and bangles making more of a statement than clothes themselves! Below is a list of designer pieces to help you decide whether statement jewelry is in or out.  Does size really matter when it comes to accessorizing? Let's compare.

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(Left to Right), Nina Ricci thin gold woven necklace, and Chanel collar with gold and black chain.   When it comes to necklaces, going big isn't always best.   The Nina Ricci necklace is delightfully delicate.  It has the touch of  timeless beauty that will always be in style. On the other hand, Chanel's ostentatious piece may be an accessory reserved for special occasions - it can be tricky pairing this necklace with your everyday wardrobe.

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(Left to Right) Giles & Brother leather and gold wrap around hook bracelet, CA & LOU pink metallic rhinestone cuff.  The Giles & Brother bracelet has a sleek over-sized hook clasp, however CA & Lou's mismatch of industrial, geometric shapes and a soft pastel pink presents an enchanting alternative.  Bigger is better when it comes to these two!

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(Left to Right) Bulgari blue and black with yellow gemstone post earrings, Christian Dior tri-color cascade earrings.  Earrings are traditionally the one piece of jewelry you want to sparkle the most.  Bulgari's earrings provide that romantic dazzle, with a just a bit of colorful flair from a classic one-stone gem post earring.   Dior's dangle earrings are stunning, rocking asymmetric shapes and a blue to silver color gradient, however they borderline on questionable costume jewelry from the 1980's.   Go classic over kitsch and sport Bulgari's smaller option!

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(Left to right) Jack Vartanian gold 18k ring, Kara Ross metallic gold asymmetrical over-sized ring.  The Kara Ross ring nearly triples in size, with bold, uninhibited shapes rivaling the neat pattern of the lesser Jake Vartanian.   With the two ring styles so similar, big vs. small is simply a matter of personal style.  Which do you prefer?

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(Left to Right) Fallon silver chain pendant necklace, Fenton black ribbon tie layered silver chain necklace.   Layers and tangled necklaces are definitely in style, however how much is too much?  Fallon's simple pendant necklace is classic and romantic, in contrast to Fenton's loud layering of cross-shaped charms, silver spikes, and chains that vary in size.   If you wear a simple Fallon necklace, it's easy to add another big piece like the CA & LOU bracelet above.  However, be cautious of what accessories you pair with the Fenton - if anything!

Share your opinion - Big vs. Small?

Thanksgiving Day Dress: What to Wear?

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Yes, Thanksgiving Day is approaching and I'd like to help you find the perfect outfit to wear on the holiday. While some of us are packing our weekend bags and others are planning dinner for the first time we are all feeling the mixed excitement and dread of Thanksgiving weekend, so considering what to wear is easily put on the back burner. No matter your style or the formality or informality of your get-together, it's the perfect excuse to put together a fabulous outfit that makes you feel good! Let's check out 5 Thanksgiving Day looks - from football to formal dinner (or that can handle the damage of that pecan pie. whichever).

1. Football + Couchies = Casual
2. Meeting your BF's Parents = Conservative & Chic
3. The Cook = Practical
4. Dinner at a Formal Restaurant = Dress it Up!
5. Going Some Place Warm = Lucky You! .. and Hot Hues

* See "what to wear" for all 5 looks in the slideshow below.

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Reinvent the "Little Black Dress" with Accessories!

Audrey Hepburn pairs her "Little Black Dress" with layers of pearls.


Thanksgiving is right around the corner and Holiday advertisements are already flooding the streets! Everyone's schedule is bursting with activity this time of the year, so if you are short on time before heading to a Holiday party, throw on your classic "Little Black Dress" and garnish it with some of the Season's hottest jewelry and accessories.  Keep it classic by adding a handful of pearls like Audrey Heburn's iconic outfit in Breakfast at Tiffany's, or spice it up with an Oscar de la Renta gold-plated swirl pattern necklace.  To get Audrey's look, browse your local vintage shops for decadent 1950-1960's pearl necklaces or check out local vintage collections from etsy.com.  Add a splash of color with bright red pumps and loud earrings, like Kenneth Jay Lane's red and teal oval clip on earrings..  For the black dress with a high neck line, add a long thin chain like the Tassel Chain Lariat necklace from Forever 21 and a selection of bangle bracelets.  For the low cut or v-neck dress, make a statement with a thick Golden Beaded "Collar" ribbon tie necklace from Zara.  No matter what your budget may be, it is always easy to reinvent your favorite "Little Black Dress".  Browse the slide show below for more pairing ideas and places to shop!

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Oversized Rimmed Glasses: "IN or OUT"

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Over-sized rimmed glasses, also known as "nerd" glasses, have been around for seasons now.  They have changed shape, color, and size, and still seem to be sticking around.  Designers like Tom Ford and Dior have jumped on the band wagon as well.  Celebrities like Kanye West, and Justin Bieber have been spotted wearing the glasses on multiple occasions.  What do you think, are the nerd glasses still cool, or are they out?

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Wedding Bells at Buckingham Palace?


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Speculation about a royal engagement is buzzing right now and has heightened over the past few days in the media. Prince William and his long-time girlfriend, Kate Middleton, have been seen together, looking happy and not avoiding the paparazzi, which is an extremely rare occasion. They are expected to announce their plans to wed by the end of the year, and the word is that they'll tie the knot in summer at what will likely be "the wedding of the decade"! Check out the talk of the pending engagement on yesterday's Today Show.




The question for us fashion-lovers is "who will Mr. Middleton wear when she walks down the isle?" The designer mentioned above is Kate's favorite, Daniella Issa Helayel. The blue dress in the photo is an Issa piece and was custom-made for her - just like Diana, Kate loves couture (who doesn't?!). The Brazilian designer, whose collections are available at Harrod's and Harvey Nichols, is also known to be in the closets of Madonna, Jennifer Lopez, Eva Mendes, Keira Knightley, and Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie. Issa has traditionally made day and cocktail dresses, originally out of her frustration of not finding anything she loved when she shopped for herself, but she has also just begun to design wedding gowns! I think that's pretty fortuitous timing for the princess-to-be!

Mama Knowles Knows What Women Want at Walmart




Beyonce's mother, Tina Knowles, who has been known for designing and styling looks for her the pop star, has actually always had a knack for fashion. This month, she is debuting a line at Walmart, called Miss Tina! The sportswear line has 30 distinct pieces, ranging from denim to leggings, graphics tees to classic blouses, embellished tops to wear-to-work dresses. There's something for every kind of woman - the clothes come in sizes 2 to 20 - and the best part: the prices! Most garments are expected to retail for about $20. Tina explains that she understands how hard it is to find clothes that are comfortable yet well-fitting and, of course, fashionable. We know that a woman who has helped push her daughter to such heights of success can do great things for other women, such as make them look great on an affordable price tag. Check out Tina talking about her line on the Today Show, and of course check out her line at Walmart!


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Zero + Maria Cornejo

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Photo: style.com


Maria Cornejo might be an esoteric name, obscure to those outside the fashion set, but that's how she likes things. In a world of designers trying everything they can to get their brand to touch as many things as possible and their collections on more - not fewer - people, the Chilean-born designer is doing things her own way by keeping her business under her watchful eye and ensuring it remains small. This week, the Wall Street Journal talked about Cornejo's "mom-and-pop" line and how her strategy of an intimate, family-controlled company is incongruous with the fashion industry today. We don't mind though, because one of the few stores that carry her line is Ikram, right here in Chicago!

But Cornejo's style, of fashion and business, reflects her preferences and her personality. Her designs are pieces that she herself would wear, and she understands that people want to be comfortable while looking fashionable. This is the basis of her use of draping, the bias cut, and often times not quite conventional tailoring - techniques that create a graceful, relaxed yet pulled-together look. Check out some of her spring designs below, and see Style.com for the full collection!

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Colored Tights: "IN or OUT"?

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Winter is just around the corner, and the dark drab colors are making their way out of the closet.  Wouldn't it be nice to add a little color and brighten up your wardrobe with colored tights?  What do you think, are bright tights hot for the winter, or are they cold as ice?
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Skinny Vs. Wide leg Pants: "IN or OUT"?

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Skinny or wide, it seems like the age old question.   The pendulum swing seems like its skipped right over jeans this season.  There are skinny pants and wide leg pants all over the streets.  We as fashion lovers just don't know which way to go.  What do you think is it wide legs or skinnys this season?

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Michelle Obama: Arts, Music... Fashion!

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Photo: Harper's Bazaar


Check out our leading lady, Michelle, in the White House's Red Room with a snazzy young group of creative kids. And of course, do not fail to notice her fabulously form-fitting yet sophisticated L'Wren Scott dress and gorgeous blue kitten-hell pumps - talk about a daring woman who is not afraid to be bold with color. In a recent interview with Harper's Bazaar, Michelle talks about the prevalence of the arts in her upbringing and how this taught her the importance of such an outlet for today's youth - specifically, she was raised in a home pulsing with the beat of soulful jazz, the passion of her grandfather, and her own father was a sculptor and painter when not working to feed his family. With that history, it would be impossible to not share a love for such pursuits. Michelle herself can name her first album, Stevie Wonder's Talking Book, but, even more poignantly, she recalls performing in her school's production of Hansel & Gretel. The best thing about this piece of her past? She was drawn to the role of the fairy because of the tutu costume it allowed her wear!

Michelle happily supports fashion as a unique and inspirational art form, using her position to prove that style is personal and political. Check out some of her best looks and favorite designers below!

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Sex Kitten: Leopard Print

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Carmen Kass unleashes her inner feline for the cover shoot of Elle Spain October. Yes, animals prints are still in style as leopard dots are all over the catwalks. From leopard outerwear to leopard loafers to leopard pants, Carmen and other celebrities alike prove this print can add instant sex-appeal to any outfit. Don't be afraid to add a small dose of dots to your outfit, and when you feel like screaming look at me add it all at once in the chicest way possible! Check back this week for Top 10 Trends for Fall/Winter.

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Scarves: "IN or OUT"?

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Scarves have been a trend for a LONG time.  They have been short, long, patterned, plain, knitted and woven, and they seem to be coming around again for fall 2010.  Marc Jacobs in playing up the long trend for Fall 2010.  His line is using thick woven wools that can be wrapped around the neck a few time.  Designers like Missoni, Diesel Black and Gold, and Dsquared2 are falling into the long trend as well.  Do you think the scarf trend is being stretched too thin, or are they in it for the long hall? Let us know what you think

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Roberto Cavalli: Spring 2011

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This spring, the sexy, va-va-voom designs of Roberto Cavalli return with skin-bearing flowy dresses and lace-up pants. Crocodile and snakeskin, leather and suede, dense fringe and beads scattered throughout, the collection comes together to evoke a feeling of sun-drenched paradise - just the right amount of wild, untamed beauty that was actually carefully crafted by the Italian designer.

Cavalli also hit 40 years of being in fashion, which he celebrated (along with his 70th birthday) with a grande festa at Les Beaux-Arts de Paris. Because he knows glitz and glamour more than anyone, the night was a fabulous mix of champagne, cake, and of course celebrities! Check out the photos from the party below as well as some more looks from the runway.

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Banning the Burqa: Oui ou Non?

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"The burqa is not welcome in France." - Nicolas Sarkozy.
It has been banned, and the proposed law will take effect in 6 months if not rejected by France's Constitutional Council. Muslim women will not be allowed to cover their faces in public, nor can anyone force a veil upon an unwilling woman or minor or there will be penalties. Do you think this is a ban on freedom of religion?
In the meantime, the spring runway shows are abuzz, and whether women are on the runway or not they still want to show themselves off. A female face, and they way people think, and feel about fashion, and how they choose to express it is admired in France. Does this  proposed law support women from the chains of the past? - or -  Is France banning the burqa  because it has become something frightening to us because of the pain of 9/11 and the war?
Watch the video to learn more on this subject: http://deskofbrian.com/2010/10/france-anti-burka-ban-protest-niqab-bare-legs-and-mini-shorts-video/. Thoughts??

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Vera Lehndorff: aka VERUSCHKA

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The first supermodel, 71 year-old Veruschka walked the runway at the Giles Deacon Spring/Summer 2011 show at London Fashion Week. Proving beauty is ageless! The 1960s icon graced the runway wearing a feather boa headdress and long, bow-print gown. At six-foot-one, she was the picture of power leading the pack of models that included Alessandra Ambrosio, Karolina Kurkova and Kelly Brook. Yes, Veruschka's return to the runway was all rage at London Fashion Week reminding us that everyone can look fabulous at every age. What do you think of her triumphant return? Do you like seeing models of all ages and sizes on the catwalk? Take a look at the photos of Veruschka over the years.

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Sexy Halloween Costumes: "IN or OUT"?

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Do you want to earn a few more tricks and treats this year?  I suggest skipping the Obama, Bush, and Nixon masks, and Princess Lea and Cat Woman are so over done.  Do a little costume making of your own, and come up with some creative sexy costumes that will definitely turn a few heads this year at the Halloween party.

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Palins Inspire Music Video?



Brittani Senser's new music video, "After Love," is causing quite the stir right now because of her choice of who stars in it: Levi Johnston! The buzz is about whether Johnston's role in the video as Senser's lover, and the fact that it so closely resembles real life circumstances with Palin family, caused the breakup with Bristol Palin. Check out the video and see for yourself. Do you think it fueled the fire for the split?

Runway: Rag & Bone

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Anytime I am fortunate enough to meet talented young designers, they always remain on my list of fashion mavens to watch out for and follow. After Rag & Bone's David Neville and Marcus Wainwright were kind of enough to stop and chat for a quick interview a few months ago at their Intermix event, I've been impressed with their style and of course the dedication that shines through in their work.

Their collection for Spring, which debuted at New York Fashion Week, is an interesting and daring departure from their signature basics-with-an-edge. Using a combination of fabrics and texture, such as chiffon, suede, crochet, broderie anglaise, to create a looks that were futuristic but feminine, the duo was certainly reaching for something different from what we're used to seeing from them. Check out some of the designs below and for the full collection, see Style.com.

What do you think - are you on board with Rag & Bone's experimentation with more avant-garde looks, or do you prefer their classic silk tops with unfinished hems and tailored pantsuits?

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Seal & Heidi: Sexy, Successful & In Love

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Seal, one half of one of the hottest star duos, released his sixth album today! If you haven't heard any of it yet - after all, it's brand new - the first single, "Secret," has been out for a bit and is probably exactly what fans have been waiting for: a song with Seal's strong, deep, yet tender voice singing about the intimacy of love. As we all know, his romantic ballads are composed with only one person in mind - the fabulous Heidi Klum! With the release of this album, I can't help but think about what a power-couple these two are and how they never cease to do big things and deliver. What's most striking about them is how apparent their connection is; although the fashion maven is clearly a natural beauty all alone, her partnership with Seal makes her glow like no one else on the runway, red carpet, or stage when she joins her husband!

And when it comes to family, they are both all about commitment, which is the title of Seal's CD. In talking about his long-standing devotion to the main pillars of his life, he said, "Everything about my life is fully committed. I've never felt more focused on the matter at hand: My wife, my children, the family in general, my own well-being, and of course music and my career. Each one of these songs has personal meaning for me. I dug very deep and all I can hope for is that the music strikes a chord with people."

Check out more pics below of the amazing Seal and Heidi and their little ones!

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QLIX Magazine: Introduction Party at Jbar

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Qlix Magazine is the hot new magazine (Qlixmag.com) founded by Tenisha Anderson who was formerly my intern for three years and styling assistant at NBC5. She was extremely talented and determined to create something new and exciting, which she has. Her education included going to school in London where she connected with European creative stars that now work on her magazine. In only a year she has had the honor selling her magazine at R.D. Franks, the largest and oldest book store in London. She has been invited to Oxford, Miss. to be the personal guest of Dr. Samir Husni (Mister Magazine) for the magazine Innovation Center with only 100 guests invited from around the world. Check out her website for others honors. All of Chicago should help support Tenisha's talents if you want to be one of the cool ones in the know!

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Leather Pants: "IN or OUT"?

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Leather, it seems to be going in and out everyday.  The liquid (faux leather) leggings were a big trend last Fall, but I think this season the real thing is making an appearance.  Leather pants are chic and fashionable if done right.  What do you think are leather pants hot this fall, or should cat woman be the only one to wear them?

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Tommy Turns 25

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Photo: style.com


Last week in New York, Tommy Hilfiger presented his Spring 2011 collection - which included an off-beat twist to his iconic all-American Northeast country club style. While the combination of khaki, white tennis skirts, pink and yellow pastels, and top-siders stays within the boundaries of his signature preppy image, Hilfiger's partnership with Peter Som added an alternative flair to this season's runway. To celebrate the collection as well as the 25th birthday of Tommy's namesake business, fashion cognoscenti and celebrities gathered at Lincoln Center, where the designer pulled out all the stops for a big bash. Check out photos below of some more pieces from the new collection as well as from the party!

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Chicago Fashion Foundation Member's Event

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It is always fun for me to speak to those in the fashion industry, as I did last week at the Chicago Fashion Foundation's Annual Member's Event at The Drake Hotel. A soiree dedicated to networking and honoring the wonderful people involved in the Chicago Fashion Industry. As the guest speaker I was able to share some stories of my own about my experiences in the business, and I loved hearing other attendees questions, and learning of their passion. While I was a guest speaker at their very first program, I was indeed impressed with their growth and their continuing dedication to helping students. The mission of the Chicago Fashion Foundation, is to provide academic scholarships to Chicago-area college students majoring in fashion related studies and coordinate educational programs for the Chicago Fashion community. For more information about the Chicago Fashion Foundation go to http://chicagofashionfoundation.com and be sure to check out their upcoming events. 

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Velvet : "IN or OUT"?

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What do you think of when you hear velvet?  Personally I think of that hideous holiday dress my aunt wears every year.  But, for Fall 2010 velvet is making a come back not as an exclusive holiday fabric, but as an everyday trend.  Even traditional designers like Ralph Lauren are including the lush fabric in their Fall 2010 RTW collections.  Velvet has come back to life and is used in everything from accessories to ball gowns.  Do you think the trend should have died or is this the season for a resurrection?
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