The New Urban Darling The internet's most trusted network of personal, professional, wardrobe stylists Wed, 01 Oct 2014 12:37:02 +0000 en-US hourly 1 3 FAVORITE STORES REVEALED Wed, 01 Oct 2014 11:30:02 +0000  

L'agence dress from CUSP

L’agence studded halter dress from CUSP

One question I get asked from clients a lot is where do I love to shop.  I will shop anywhere (yes, I’m obsessed) but I do have my favorites.  Whether I peruse these retailer’s goods online or in store, I always seem to find something that stands out and makes a statement.  No matter what part of the country you are in, you can definitely browse these 3 sites and find something that will take your look to the next level. Here are my top 3 in no particular order.

CUSP – This store is an offshoot of Neiman Marcus.  They have six stores in the U.S. but are also online. They feature many contemporary designers like Diane Von Furstenberg, Milly, Splendid, and Theory as well as many others.  I shop at their downtown Chicago store from time to time and always discover lines that I have never heard of.  It’s a nice departure from your typical department stores.  This is the perfect place to find that party or cocktail dress for the holidays. Here are my fave party looks from their site.


Piperlime – This store, which is a part of the Gap corporation, is perfect for finding basics for your wardrobe.  I get almost all my denim from this site as well as blazers, blouses, and coats.  From time to time, I will find some amazing shoes as well. They do have a flagship store in New York which I hope to visit one day.  Here are some basics that will go the distance in your closet.


Pixie Market – I recently found out about this site from a blogger that I follow.  This site is for the girl that likes to step out of the box sometimes. Some items have some whimsy while others are very streamlined. Pixie Market carries many contrasting styles of clothing so there is something for everybody. The best part of their site is that most items are under $100! If you shop here, you won’t be caught wearing the same outfit as someone else at your next event or outing.


L’Agence dress here and similar here, Vince Camuto open-toed booties similar here

What are your favorite stores to shop? Any hidden gems that I need to know about? Let me know in the comments.

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SEPTEMBER IN NEW YORK Tue, 30 Sep 2014 18:04:15 +0000 Slide1Slide2Slide3If you are currently living in New York the weather probably has you so confused you literally don’t know what to wear.  One day it’s hot steamy and humid and the next cooler,  yet not cold enough to pull out the dreaded winter coat.  You’ve already put away your summer clothes so what now?

My advice is while the weather is doing its thing and still in transition mode, is to go for wear now fabrics and materials meaning the fabric may have the look and the feel of fall and thus is appropriate but it is technically for the now weather, the still hot weather you are experiencing now. Do layer so you are prepared when the temperature drops at night.

Above, I go for a chiffon printed floral dress and layer with a wool shawl collar sweater and a pair of boots.  The fabric is super light weight yet looks like fall.

The wardrobe stylists at Urban Darling have one goal: to connect you with your style.  Let us build a wardrobe you can count on.    



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WINTER WEDDING PLANNING Mon, 29 Sep 2014 20:21:22 +0000 I’m getting married this December.  My fiancé and I have known each other nearly 10 years now, and have been together most of that time, so I pretty much feel like I’m already married.  We’ve lived together for years and I typically refer to him as my husband because fiancé just seems silly.  That being said, I was not inclined to make a big show of our union.  In fact, I was ready to run off to Hawaii just the two of us and make it official.  My darling mother however (and grandmother and aunt and even my younger cousin) insisted on a wedding.  Since I’m quite close with my family and all the women have strong personalities to boot, I opted to accommodate this request on the grounds that the wedding would be small.  And thankfully it will be…

The night my hunny bun proposed.  It was December and we were staying at the Mission Inn in Riverside during the festival of lights.  The ring was custom made and inspired by a vintage love knot.  Our wedding will be exactly two years later.

The night my hunny bun proposed. It was December and we were staying at the Mission Inn in Riverside during the festival of lights. The ring was custom made and inspired by a vintage love knot. Our wedding will take place exactly two years later.

My fiancé was born and raised in the UK and all of his family still lives there…a very big family at that. Since we’re keeping it local here in So Cal, only a few key members from his side will be attending. Now I have a bit of family in LA, but most of my family lives in Florida…far enough away to warrant only immediate family in attendance.  I didn’t even want to bother with invitations (and actually still haven’t) though my mom insists I need to at least send out an acknowledgment.  Both and Wedding Paper Divas have some lovely options and I’m thinking something like this suits my style.


We scheduled for December as it was a convenient time for everyone to fly out.  Growing up in Florida and spending the last decade in LA, I’m a beachy palm tree kind of girl.  If anything, I imagined an outdoor wedding with bright tropical flowers.  In this case, since winter dictates the theme, I’m leaning in a different direction.  I’m still set on a small outdoor ceremony, and have settled on a vintage garden party vibe.  There hasn’t been a lot of planning for such a casual affair (or at least that’s the way I’m looking at it) so I’m allowing things to happen organically.  The venue isn’t set, though we do have a request in for the perfect space (an old colonial house with a cute garden and small banquet room)…just waiting on whether it will be available over the holidays.

Seaver House, Pomona College. My fiancé is a professor in the chem department, so the college campus is only fitting.

In the meantime, I did go dress shopping this past weekend with my mother, grandmother, and aunt.  My mom decided to fly out for the occasion (her idea not mine) though it was a very sweet gesture.  We were met with some success while out shopping in Beverly Hills.  Not sure that I’ve settled on the perfect dress just yet, though BHLDN and Bloomingdales both had some lovely options.  I definitely envision a slightly bohemian vintage inspired number versus anything modern or structured.  I want something ethereal to fit the overall atmosphere.  My mom found a stunning beaded metallic rose gold cocktail dress, which suits the theme wonderfully.  My grandmother and aunt also have their looks nailed down. No one will be matching, but the overall styling with be cohesive.  Think black, white, and shades of rose gold with lace, gems, and beaded elements.  Ornate and wintery but still elegant versus overdone.  I’ll be sure to post pictures after it all goes down!

Some of my favorite dresses via BHLDN.

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MADE IN MINNESOTA Sun, 28 Sep 2014 14:49:19 +0000 IMG_7274

BlackBlue is a shop in Saint Paul where one can still go to find incredibly well made shoes, sweaters, jeans, bags and more, many of which are still created with the tried and true methods of forgotten eras. These pieces are hand picked from various longstanding companies from around the globe including jeans from North Carolina, sweaters from Denmark,  and thick down coats from Canada. The staff is known for their denim knowledge as well as their vast understanding of high quality workmanship. Pairs of worn denim hang on the wall to show customers just how a pair of raw denim will wear, exhibiting the resiliency of loomed denim.


This shop carries brands such as Red Wing boots out of Red Wing, Minnesota where the company was founded in 1905. Many of these shoes are still made by hand and the beauty in the craftsmanship is bar none. I own two pairs of men’s Red Wing shoes and love them for their comfort, strength and style. They look fantastic with a pair of dark skinny jeans, yet I can easily throw them on with a pair of old levi’s and go for a hike, without my feet ever getting sore.


Minnesota is also home to the Duluth Pack out of Duluth, Minnesota where the company has been creating these sturdy canvas and leather bags since 1882. While the original packs were created for the portaging of the Boundary Waters backcountry in northern Minnesota, the company now also creates luggage, smaller travel packs, purses and much more. I own a smaller Duluth Pack purse and adore it. This canvas bag is sturdy and stylish with beautifully tanned leather straps that will never wear out.


J.W. Hulme Co. started in Saint Paul in 1905 where they are still creating pieces with American leather from around the country. These leathers are buttery soft yet extremely tough and will only become more beautiful with wear. If you ever get a chance to visit their facility in Saint Paul I highly recommend it. You will be able to take a peak at the craftsmen working hard on their pieces, seeing a craft that has become a rare art form. Last year I received one of their wallets for Christmas and over the past year the already deep colored leather has become an even deeper bourbon hue.


Every place has its unique shops and I’d love to hear about your favorite local spots and American made products!

Shoes: (exact here, similar here)

Duluth Pack: (exact here)

J.W. Hulme bags: (similar here)

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GOING TRIBAL: FALL TREND Sat, 27 Sep 2014 20:55:26 +0000 Match made in heaven! Blush Boutique recently moved in next door to my studio! When my model search winner Lacey, stopped by we decided to do a little shopping.  She needed a cute fall look that was functional, comfortable and versatile for a Mom on the go.  I absolutely love the tribal look that is so in this year and I gave her a couple ways to wear these great pieces.  She can easily throw on a pair of boots which are slightly more functional than the 6 inch heels I put her in for the photoshoot.  Now she has a complete look that can be worn multiple ways to fit her needs and the changing season.

Local Peeps you can go to Blush Boutique to get the look or shop the look below!!




2014-09-27_0005 2014-09-27_0003



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SHOP & SUPPORT BREAST CANCER AWARENESS and RESEARCH Fri, 26 Sep 2014 12:00:39 +0000 We all shop on regular bases, so why not support a good cause while doing so? That’s right!
I am not sure how to put everything in words but I think we all know how important SUPPORT is!

This can go in so many directions and not everyone does it the same way…
For some it might mean to be there for a loved one when they need them the most, for some it might be the urge to make a difference and for some it might be the satisfaction of doing something nice.

Whatever it might be, during the month of October we can all support the
Breast Cancer Research Foundation by shopping the pieces below!

BTW, each single item would make a great gifts as well ;-)
A sentimental value will make the giver and receiver feel amazing!

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FALL DENIM TRENDS + HOW TO WEAR THEM Thu, 25 Sep 2014 14:48:18 +0000 Fall Denim Trends

If you’re over skinny and boyfriend jeans, take you  denim game to the next level. The three denim trends  to rock for fall are patchwork jeans, the girlfriend jeans, and the 70s flare.

Don’t worry, patchwork jeans come in your beloved boyfriend or skinny silhouettes, if you can’t let go just yet. For versatility, choose styles that marry two or more washes together. Pair with sneakers or heels and wear with a solid color on top keep them from looking too busy.

The girlfriend jeans are  similar to the boyfriend jeans, but with a higher waist and a tapered silhouette. Style them with a fashion forward piece like a crop top, they will look equally well with a heel or a flat shoe. The look is laidback but cool.

Chanel effortless cool in a 70s flare silhouette, that will flatter a slim or curvy figure. Try a cropped flare if you’re petite. To balance the wide leg always wear with a platform.

What’s your favorite denim trend for fall? Please share in the comments below.
xx Sasha

The wardrobe stylists at Urban Darling have one goal: to connect you with your style. Let us build a wardrobe you can count on™.

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IS RALPH LAUREN’S TECH POLO SHIRT THE SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME? Wed, 24 Sep 2014 20:20:36 +0000 Sony_Walkman_WM-2

Originally published to LinkedIn on 09/18/2014

I am no historian. In fact, even my memory isn’t all that great. The history of what I ate for breakfast yesterday has already been relegated to the dustbin of the unrecorded past. That having been said, in light of Urban Darling’s recently announced partnership with Techweek, I’ve found myself contemplating the implications of Ralph Lauren’s new foray into wearable technology and its appropriate place in the context of an industry that has thus far been largely without context.

Wearable technology has been around for a long time. Having grown up in the 90’s my frame of reference begins with “Walkmans” on belt clips (see the svelte technological marvel pictured above) and light-up sneakers featuring LEDs that flashed with each step. A quick consult with Google references a designer named Diana Dew who was experimenting with electroluminescent clothing in the 60’s. Even as early as the late 1800’s it was a fashionable curiosity for women to wear evening gowns laced with light bulbs.

While these examples of wearable technology have largely faded into irrelevance, a growing crop of wearable devices is scrabbling to gain traction with a consumer base that has remained, for the most part, disinterested. Google’s Glass, while intriguing, is inaccessible for the vast majority of consumers and is more fascinating for its potential than for any existing application it may have. The tepid battery life has yet to be addressed; it’s more cumbersome than a standard pair of fashion sunglasses, and while the voice-activated camera has apparently been well-received by users, if I start talking to myself every time I snap a photo, they’ll throw me in a padded cell almost as quickly as I can drain the Glass’s battery.

More-promising has been the spate of “activity trackers” serving up gobs of data for wearers to analyze via their computers or smartphones, enabling them to understand their sleep, activity, and eating patterns. These small, often unobtrusive devices can usually be concealed in a pocket or a handbag, though are typically designed to be most accurate when worn around the wrist. While activity trackers have become progressively more-fashionable with each subsequent design (see the original FitBit Ultra vs the current-gen FitBit Flex), only a few companies, like Tory Burch and Misfit are working toward making the technology component invisible.

Even still, invisibility and integration are two different things. The Withings Activité shows significant promise in combining fashionable appearance with accessible functionality that isn’t overwhelming. The reactive glass, analog design, and ability to track your progress toward a customizable objective, are all integrated into a simple, yet elegant package. The watch also tracks far more data than it offers up from your wrist, syncing with your computer and mobile devices via Bluetooth to display a detailed account of your activity. Far from a panacea, the Activité is not yet available for sale and at a promised price of “<$500”, it hardly seems poised to capture the favor of the average consumer.

The BASIS activity tracker from Basis Science, Inc. is another watch-like activity tracker that ups the ante by including a heart-rate monitor in the device feature-set. It falls short, however, of being a viable replacement for offerings from Garmin and Polar which appeal to cyclists and die-hard fitness enthusiasts due to the ability of those devices to track heart-rate while the wearer is in motion, a feature the BASIS lacks. The BASIS is arguably more aesthetically appealing than its more feature-laden Polar and Garmin counterparts, but it’s still not going to win you any door prizes for most-fashionably accessorized.

The recently revealed Apple Watch is the first piece of wearable technology I’ve mentioned in this article that promises to be something beyond a simple activity tracker. Its purported ability to track a variety of health metrics, including heart-rate, coupled with its ability to actually provide the wearer with real-time feedback arguably elevates it to the level of a “diagnostic wearable.” With Apple’s history of bringing software developers into the fold, there will no doubt be apps that fully exploit the hardware’s potential, though how many people will be engaging in intense physical activity with their exposed $349 iGadget on their wrists remains to be seen (as does the question of the device’s durability). Moreover, being affixed to the wrist, the Apple watch is inherently limited in the amount of data it can gather and is more-susceptible to error than a less-localized diagnostic wearable would be.

Enter the Polo Tech shirt from Ralph Lauren. If Ralph Lauren’s promotional materials are to be believed, the shirt will gather data derived from your body’s shape and deliver that information to a compatible device, where it will be analyzed and subsequently used to offer real-time feedback and suggestions for calibrating your workout while you’re exercising. This distinction between simply aggregating data for later review and actually examining data to give real-time suggestions is what makes the Polo Tech such a (potentially) powerful and compelling diagnostic tool, particularly when compared against its “activity tracker” counterparts. A shirt that accurately tracks heart-rate, stress level, caloric output, and even respiration rate, could provide tangible benefit during every workout, rather than a mere aggregation of data to be analyzed and interpreted whenever you decide to examine the stats your activity tracker has compiled.

In addition to this impressive array of features, the Polo Tech shirt sacrifices nothing in terms of fashion. As far as activewear goes, it’s arguably more-fashionable than the majority of products in the space, whatever their level of technological sophistication. There are, however, shortcomings in the initial iteration of the shirt that will prevent it from gaining mass consumer appeal. Presumably to maintain diagnostic accuracy as much as to increase wearer performance, the Polo Tech is a compression shirt, meaning it’ll look most flattering on people who are already in-shape (I’d probably burn my calories for the day just trying to get it on). Also, the component of the shirt that allows sensor data to be synced with Bluetooth-enabled devices (iOS only at present) is not exactly hard to spot. The real potential of the Polo Tech is in its feature set and the real-estate it occupies. I know of few people with the kind of loyalty to their existing brand of undershirt that they would pass up a viable, cost-effective alternative with the stylishness and capability of the Polo Tech.

However, until any of these devices prove themselves indispensable, the humble wristwatch will remain the most successful piece of wearable technology ever created. Originating as an accessory designed for royalty in the early 1800’s, this simple mechanical timepiece has become a fashion mainstay that doggedly clings to our wrists in spite of our living in a world saturated with myriad technologies that can more accurately keep track of the time. As Ralph Lauren’s Polo Tech shirt continues to evolve, I can envision its functionality being integrated into garments in ways that make it increasingly easy-to-wear. Eventually, it may even be a viable replacement for the standard undershirt, with the added benefit of its seemingly intricate diagnostic functionality. My thinking may be antiquated, but I can’t yet see the future where Apple’s watch replaces the ones I currently wear on my wrist. I wonder if any of the executives at Apple feel the same, or if they even considered the thought (not that I’d recommend betting against a company with Apple’s track record).

Whatever the case, 2015 is shaping up to be an interesting year for the fashion-tech industry and I’m looking forward to getting my hands on some of the wearable widgetry heading our way.

Brandon Esposito is the CEO of Urban Darling


RELATED: Check out Kathrine’s review of the Jawbone Up here.

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DENIM ON DENIM Tue, 23 Sep 2014 18:35:57 +0000 Slide1






Denim on Denim, while some claim this trend is a no no, I personally think if you do it right you’ll be the talk of the town.  The key is to go for different shades of denim instead of being matchy matchy.  There are endless of indigo washes to choose from and chances are you have a few tried-and-true-blues in your closet.  While they go with just about everything else, did you know that you can pair them up for a super cool, layered look?   See how I do the denim on denim trend above and get inspired to give it your own go..why not?

So ladies, please let us know how you mix and match your blues and do share in the comments below cause we’d love to know!

STYLIST: Jenny Vincent-Minkey

OUTFIT: denim jacket (similar styles available here ).  Denim vest, Gap .  Patchwork denim Jeans, Gap (similar style available and here and here).  Patchwork denim skirt, vintage (similar style available here and here).


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THE ULTIMATE PETITE SHOPPING GUIDE: FALL EDITION Mon, 22 Sep 2014 16:27:31 +0000 Being petite is not always easy. At exactly 5 feet tall and 98 pounds almost everything I buy needs tailoring, and trust me that’s a hassle!!  Imagine not being able to wear your brand new blazer or pair of jeans straight out of the shopping bag.  I usually have to wait a least a week for something to be altered, assuming I’ve dropped it off right away… Sometimes an item will go straight into my closet and months will go by before I dig it out again for tailoring.  Not exactly ideal.  That being said, more and more brands are starting to offer a broad selection of petite merchandise.  Not surprising considering an estimated 43% of the adult female population in the US qualifies as petite (i.e. 5’4 or under).  That number is huge and it makes my head spin a bit to think the average fit model is 5’8 when nearly half the female population is 5’4 or less.  I’m sooooo grateful to the brands that recognize petite women need clothes that fit!  The correct fit is particularly important as fall rolls around.  While the swimsuits, short shorts, and sundresses of summer might not necessitate petite sizing, your jeans and outerwear definitely do.  Here’s a run-through of my favorite petite lines, complete with a sample of fall offerings…

If your style is edgy and trend-driven, try ASOS, Bebe, and Topshop.  (ASOS and Topshop are both UK based, and honestly the British do petites really well.  Maybe it’s just Europe overall, but I always have an easier time shopping there.)

ASOS: Petite sizing is critical where jumpsuits are concerned...otherwise it's bound to be too long in the torso and the inseam.  Love this sleek and chic option from ASOS!

ASOS: Petite sizing is critical where jumpsuits are concerned…otherwise it’s bound to be too long in the torso and the inseam. Love this sleek and chic option from ASOS. They’re online only but offer free shipping and free return shipping, so there’s no risk in trying them out!!


For short girls, nothing is worse than leggings that bunch at the bottom.  The bunching effect will cause your legs to look even shorter!!  Not to mention, it's more difficult to tuck your leggings into boots with all the excess fabric.  I'm obsessed with these two petite options from Bebe!  They're sleek and sexy and perfect for fall/winter.

Bebe: For short gals, nothing is worse than leggings that bunch at the bottom. The bunching effect will cause your legs to look even shorter!! Not to mention, it’s more difficult to tuck leggings into boots with all the excess fabric. I’m obsessed with these two petite options from Bebe! They’re sleek and sexy and perfect for fall/winter…thinking I may have to buy them for myself :)


Topshop: A tailored blazer is one of those things that needs to fit well or it looks sloppy.  A petite size will ensure a better fit in the shoulders, sleeve length, and hem.  Topshop offers a good selection of petite jackets and blazers, including this modern blush interpretation.

Topshop: A tailored blazer is one of those items that needs to fit well or it looks sloppy. A petite size will ensure a better fit in the shoulders, sleeve length, and hem. Topshop offers a good selection of petite jackets and blazers, including this modern blush interpretation.


If your style is classic and fem, try Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, J. Crew, and WHBM.

Ann Taylor is great because they produce they're entire collection (i'm talking loads of stuff) in petite sizes.  I loooove this wine colored fit and flare dress with faux-leather piping.

Ann Taylor: Ann Taylor is great because they produce their entire collection (I’m talking loads of stuff) in petite sizes. I loooove this wine colored fit and flare dress with faux-leather piping.  The silhouette complements a petite frame, and it’s a fab option for the holiday season.


Banana Republic: It's nice to find a petite sweater.  When I try sweaters they're too often oversized and way too long.  Banana Republic offers a

Banana Republic: It’s nice to find a petite sweater. When I try sweaters they’re too often oversized and way too long. Banana Republic offers a good variety, including this classic merino wool version.  Wendy Nguyen of Wendy’s Lookbook recently collaborated with Banana Republic and provided her style tips for petite dressing!


J. Crew

J. Crew: A petite maxi is a must!  This stunning silk chiffon dress from J. Crew comes in a vast array of colors to suit your preference and complexion. Another great option for your formal affairs this coming holiday season.


White House Black Market: A trench coat (or any long coat) is hard to wear unless you find one perfectly proportioned to your petite frame. I’m drooling over this gorgeous camel coat from WHBM. It’s nicely tailored and the grommet detail adds a bit of edge. This one is definitely on my wishlist for fall.


Not to mention many affordable brands like American Eagle, Express, and Hollister offer a wide selection of jeans and pants in short inseams!!  Sooooo I’d love to hear from all of the petite readers out there…what’s your shopping experience like?  Where do you usually go for clothes that fit?

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STYLIST TIP: TRY IT, YOU JUST MAY LIKE IT Sun, 21 Sep 2014 12:00:18 +0000 One of the things that I hear the most when working with my clients is, “Wow, I never would have tried that ______ (dress, blouse, skirt) on, I can’t believe I like it!”.  At the risk of sounding cliche, the truth is that seeing really is believing.

So many times we discount what something will do for us because we don’t like the way it looks on the hanger.  Even as a stylist, who is more comfortable stretching her limits than the average Jane,  I can be momentarily duped into this mindset.  Here are some examples of things I might have passed up had I not tried them on.


This maxi romper screamed – no personality.  It looks limp and lifeless on the hanger and by all appearances has absolutely no structure – something that a curvy gal like me needs.  Curiosity got the best of me so I tried it on.  This was my result:


(Romper: Similar here | Shoes: Similar here | Necklace: Similar here)

Even worse than our judgement of how we think it might fit, we just don’t think we can pull “it” off.   When I saw this two piece romper, I had a pretty good idea that the top would work.  (STYLE TIP: an empire waist is great for offsetting a long torso to accentuate curves in the right places.)


What I didn’t like were the pants.  Not so much for how they looked but because of my insecurities: Are they too trendy? Are they age appropriate for a 45 year old?  Wearing those two pieces together?  Too baggy and lifeless with a cinched ankle?

I actually made fun of them on the hanger which,  of course, meant that I’d have to try them on to prove just how ridiculous this combo would look on me.  This is what happened:


 (Romper: Similar here | Shoes: Similar here | Necklace: Similar here)  

Darlings, as you can see, even I am guilty as charged…but I’m so glad that I tried them on!

We are our all own worst critics and often times we don’t allow ourselves the luxury of learning that we actually CAN pull “it” off and feel fabulous because we tried something new.

The point isn’t to try something so outside of your comfort zone that you feel ridiculous or uncomfortable.  The point is that you’ve been wanting  or needing a change so why not at least try something new?  What’s the worst than can happen?  You either will have absolute confirmation that you were right all along OR, like me, you just may find that little treasure that gives you the knock ‘em dead confidence that you were looking for.

STYLIST TIP: Challenge yourself today to try something new – I’d love to hear what you discover by trying.

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THREE WAYS TO WEAR: SCARF Sat, 20 Sep 2014 15:04:07 +0000 It is the beginning of Fall, time for fun with scarves! I am going to show you three different ways to wear your one scarf for three fun looks!

GLAMOROUS: Take your scarf  and lay it over the top of your head, than bring down each end to underneath your chin.  Do a pretty fold or knot until you feel the top of the scarf is secure around your head.  This will give you an amazing glamorous look.


CASUAL: For a casual look, take the scarf and drape around your neck with both end coming to the front of your chest.  Make simple knot and you have a casual look with your scarf. Also you can make the knot close or loose from your neck, it is all on your comfort level, have fun trying new ways to knot and switch up the look.


TRENDY: For a cool trendy look, I wanted to make a belt out of my scarf.  Simply wrap the scarf around your waist and make a pretty bow or knot on the front (back if you’d like) and you have a belt made out of your scarf!  It is also nice to cinch your waist for an hourglass effect.100_3238

What is your favorite way to wear a scarf ? Let us know in the comments!

Stylist: Alicia Howell

Vibe: Fun with Fall Scarf

Location: Ohio

Outfit: Dress, Unknown, similar here / Scarf, self-made, similar here

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STYLE GAME CHANGERS FOR FALL Fri, 19 Sep 2014 16:48:21 +0000 It’s getting chilly in the mornings, everything is moist and I feel like putting on a light jacket when I walk my daughter to the school bus. I believe it’s time to update the wardrobe for the fall season. I was thinking about pieces that would change my attitude during the time of layering. For me attitude/game changers are things that you put on and they instantly supercharge your confidence.

Cozy, stylish and cool at the same time. Love the pattern and leather detail!
Tip: make sure the silhouette is flattering on you. Avoid boxy cuts if you are petite.
current style via

2. DEEP PURPLE LIPS by Clinique
Super easy and budget friendly. Deep purple lips give you an instant mysterious, sexy vibe.
I personally use the Cubby Sticks and can only recommend them. Try several shades to find the one!
Tip: prep your lips with All About Lips for a smooth finish with bonus treatment effect.
current style via

3.  HOT PAIR OF HEELS by See By Chloe
These studded babes will add a little bit of rock-and-roll that will make you walk with your head up high.
Tip: turn up the oomph by wearing them with pattern tights for a night out.
hot deal via

We are all individuals with different likes and preferences! What are your style changers for fall?
Please share it with us in the comments below!

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FALL TREND: THE BLANKET COAT Thu, 18 Sep 2014 14:24:47 +0000 Fall Trend: The Blanket Coat

If you’re looking for a new statement, but cozy silhouette to update you fall wardrobe then the blanket coat, serape or poncho may be your answer. Seen on the Fall 2014 runways at Burberry Prorsum, Roberto Cavalli, and The Row the trend is surprisingly easy to pull off. You can wear it with everything!

For extra warmth, drape a cape version over a classic double breasted coat. To balance out the oversized silhouette pair with distressed skinny jeans for easy weekend style. Channel a model-of-duty by rocking a blanket coat with over-the-knee-boots.

For work, wear with a form fitting sweater dress and elegant heels.  For a night out, envelope an open-front style here and here over a mini dress, let the folds fall open or cinch with a belt.   

The drapey coat in rich textures will win you over with its practicality and style. It’s the coverup of the season!

How will you style a blanket coat? Sound off in the comments below.
xx Sasha

The wardrobe stylists at Urban Darling have one goal: to connect you with your style. Let us build a wardrobe you can count on™.

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JORD WOOD WATCHES: REVIEW & GIVEAWAY Wed, 17 Sep 2014 10:00:19 +0000 20140903-IMG_9729





Photos by Melissa Leigh Hansen Photography

Recently, Urban Darling was approached by JORD to do a review of their unique, one-of-a-kind wood timepieces.  I jumped at the chance to see this line in person because I always wear a watch and thought it would be good time to try something new.  I was not disappointed! First off, JORD’s name in Swedish means earth, soil, and land.  Their name is perfect because all of their watches are made from sustainable materials from all the over the world.  Their use of many different woods is a way to take everyday fashion back to nature.  When I received my watch in the mail, I immediately understood the inspiration behind the design.  The contrasting woods of this Sully series watch were so striking and definitely made me look twice. Other bonus features of their watches include scratch proof faces and stainless steel clasps.  I chose the Sully watch which is made of black and maple wood.  It’s a different take on the menswear watch which is so on trend right now.  These timepieces would be equally perfect for the man in your life. Here’s their lineup of watches…  Which one is your favorite?

Don’t miss your chance to win one of these amazing timepieces by entering our giveaway now! To enter, you must first like JORD Wood Watches on Facebook, then follow Urban Darling on Instagram. Comment on our JORD watch Instagram pic, and the winner will be tagged one week from today.

Outfit Deets: Converse for Target crochet sweater, similar here / Banana Republic heritage ankle jeans, similar here / CUSP layered necklace, similar here / JORD Sully series watch, here.


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Urban Darling, the nation’s first online network of professional wardrobe stylists, and Techweek, the nation’s #1 technology conference and festival, have teamed up to produce the conference’s FashionTECH runway shows for New York and Los Angeles, with an eye toward a long-term partnership.

With over 2,000 attendees and over 300 companies present, Techweek is a comprehensive celebration of all things technology, with the CEOs of BuzzFeed and Urbanspoon, and the founders of Reddit and Quicken Loans being among the New York event’s high-profile list of keynote speakers. In addition to the FashionTECH runway show, the conference will feature a startup competition, a hackathon, a hiring fair, myriad social gatherings, and a food-truck faceoff, among other events.

Urban Darling newsletter subscribers (sign up here) will receive an exclusive 15% off promo code for tickets to New York Techweek. We hope to see you in-person at our conference exhibit and at the FashionTECH runway show, as we celebrate the finale of what is certain to be another extraordinary Techweek.

Also, keep your eyes peeled for Cleo Caban, founder of Beauty, Fashion and War, lifestyle oracle Emma Johnson, and Danielle from Soho Strut as they join Urban Darling in covering Techweek New York!

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DENIM SHORTS IN THE FALL/WINTER SEASONS Tue, 16 Sep 2014 19:47:41 +0000 Slide2




As temperatures start to drop we tend to wanna part from our good ole daisy dukes we’ve been sporting all summer.   But not so fast ladies, their lifespan extends far beyond the summer months.  The solution is to simply pair with black tights or leggins et voila!  Who knew your daisies could keep you warm?   

In any event, dress up or down with a pair of high heel or flat boot as you can see in the examples above. Accessorize your daisies as fancy or as casually as your little heart desires.  The choice is yours.  So hold off on packing up them daisy dukes I say.

Ladies, please let us know how you like your daisies in the winter and do share in the comments below cause we’d love to know!

STYLIST: Jenny Vincent-Minkey

OUTFIT: denim cut off shorts (similar styles available here and here)



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FASHION FACE-OFF: THE LWD VS. THE LBD Mon, 15 Sep 2014 16:56:31 +0000 DSC01144DSC01122E

I was compelled to post about the little white dress because I feel it’s often overlooked.  Women tend to wear black because it’s a safe bet, but white is refreshing for a change.  Plus it’s fun to accessorize with a choice pop of color.  While black is slimming, white helps highlight a tan, not to mention it’s more versatile (black is harder to dress down while white is easy to dress up).  Here I take the two head-to-head, complete with style tips and venue advice!


I found this white lace number at Guess just last month.  Was actually itching for a different (fit-and-flare) white dress, but it was out of stock in my size.  Didn’t think I’d like this one nearly as much, but when I tried it on I fell in love with the open back and the hidden pockets.  I’m a huge fan of wearing red heels with a white dress.  Red is more flirty than black, and complements the white beautifully.  I kept accessories to a minimum, with a small (but cute) Guess handbag and a sparkling blue statement necklace via BaubleBar.  This look is fit for casual dates, girls night, and especially outdoor events.  It’s fresh and clean and even a bit nautical…would suit an oceanside venue perfectly!


My LBD is also by Guess.  Though I bought it last year, you can shop a similar style here.  I don’t like to pair a black dress with black heels….would rather wear nude or in this case white for a bit of contrast.  My super fab heels are Scene by ShoeDazzle.  I incorporated a fun pop of pink with a Kate Spade clutch, and avoided a necklace altogether, given the cutout neckline of this dress.  Though I did accent the look with some stunning chandelier earrings from JewelMint.  Whether black or white, I’d always recommend a bit of color and shine for your night out.  Black definitely reads more formal and is ideal when you need to look polished and sophisticated.

Which look do you prefer and why?  I’d love to know, so sound off in the comments!!

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FUNKY YOUNG PROFESSIONAL: CLOSET AUDIT Sat, 13 Sep 2014 17:03:42 +0000

Aleah has always dreamed of owning her own event planning business and escaping the corporate world.  This May she finally took the plunge and opened Wildly Whimsy Weddings & Event Design. With her new business came a new lifestyle and new perspective.  She has always worked in the corporate world, bound by dress codes and pant suits that not only aged her but were terribly boring (sorry Aleah, the truth hurts).  Aleah is a young, independent woman whose personality is fun, upbeat, quirky and artistic. Unfortunately, her wardrobe was not letting her true self shine through and she needed to freshen her look while maintaining a certain level of professionalism.

The Closet Audit:

Aleah told me that she needed to buy a whole new wardrobe in order to update her look.  I told her, lets do the closet audit first and see what you really need.  I assured her that we could create looks that were fun and appropriate for her new life, using the clothes she already has.  We mixed sassy separates, traditional professional pieces and funky accessories until we had 6 new outfits that are perfect for her new life.

Aleah has a new confidence about her and the outfits we created allow her to show who she is on the inside, on the outside! And isn’t that what we all want?!!​ And the best part is she didn’t have to spend a dime on new clothes!!!

Before:What Aleah would normally wear to work, slacks and a cardigan                                          After!! Put together, sassy and professional

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INSPIRATION FROM NYFW STREET STYLE Fri, 12 Sep 2014 16:09:16 +0000 New York Fashion Week is a street style extravaganza! Fabulous outfits for every style personality!
One look that I am totally obsessed with is Aimee Song’s BCBG number.

Shop Aimee’s look here:

Even though I absolutely love the BCBG pieces, they are a bit pricey.


c600x496Shop this look:

The layered sweater is genius and makes it so easy to get dressed. I love how this look can translate into many lifestyles. From work to date night, make it your own by changing up the accessories.

More lovely shirts to choose from:

Here is my take on it:

DSCN3367Shop my look:

I found my own layered shirt 2 days ago via Last Call at Potomac Mills in Woodbridge, VA.
Everything else was already in my closet. Because the longer layer of the shirt hits me at my hips it is best for my petite frame to wear a shorter skirt and pumps to balance out the proportions. It is always important to make the outfit work for your!
This shirt will also look fab with skinnies & blazer once the weather gets cooler.

Were you inspired by a look lately and recreated it? Which one was it?
I would also love to know where you get your style inspirations.

]]> 2 SASHA’S PICKS: THE ALTUZARRA X TARGET COLLAB Thu, 11 Sep 2014 15:16:27 +0000 Altuzarra for Target I have been anticipating this collab for a long time and it’s coming in stores and online at and Net-A-Porter next Sunday, September 14th! Luckily, I live only a block away from Target, so getting there will be a breeze.

All 48 pieces of the collection are under $100. Joseph Altuzarra, a 2011 CFDA prize winner, describes the collection perfectly as, “There’s a sensuality and seductiveness. In the past, Target collections have been younger, a bit more girly and very happy, and in our case, we wanted it to be sophisticated — a bit more grown up”

This collection has everything any self respecting fashionista could desire – a romantic boho embroidered blouse, a pencil skirt in a python print with a slit up to there, a regal red velvet blazer, a goes-with- everything trench coat and a crisp shirt dress. You’re covered for night out on the town and work the next morning.  And who could resist a seductive cami set with a face mask and over-the-knee stiletto boots?

See the Lookbook here and my must-haves below.

What’s on your Altuzarra x Target wishlist?
xx Sasha

Altuzarra for Target fave picks

Clockwise from top: Embroidered blouse in red; Maxi dress in swiss dot; Crock effect belt in black.

Altuzarra for Target fave picks

Clockwise from top: Trench coat in military green/black; Shirtdress in white/banker stripe; Velvet blazer in ruby red; Pencil skirt in python print.

Altuzarra for Target fave picks

Clockwise from top: Cami set in black swiss dot; Over-the-knee boots; Triangle fringe scarf.


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THE PURR-FECT PRINT: MY LEOPARD LOVES Wed, 10 Sep 2014 14:45:13 +0000 DSCN0621

This season animal print is everywhere. Neutral hues of brown and black  to rainbow shades of leopard can be found in accessories covering you from head-to-toe. Here are a few of my favorite finds and how to wear them.

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Scarves: Fall is a time when scarves are worn not only as a chic accessory, added to any Autumn ensemble, but also for the warmth they provide. One of my fall favorites is the Old Navy Women’s Leopard-Print Gauze Scarf found at  It’s easy to style; just double the loop and slip over your head. The weight and drape of the fabric gives it the look of a more expensive scarf, and it retails for only $17.95! A fall must-have for updating your black with effortless elegance.


Handbags: This cross-body botkier bag in muted hues of grey leopard is a great addition to your Autumn wardrobe. It pairs well with the season’s colors of rich jewel tones, navy, camel, and black. (Similar Here).


Shoes: Leopard shoes are a must have this season. Whether it’s ‘to-die-for’ D’Orsay pumps (Similar Here & Here) or the perfect pointed-toe flat (Similar Here), no outfit is complete without this finishing touch.

What will your leopard loves be this Autumn?

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HOW TO STYLE A CLASSIC DENIM SHIRT Tue, 09 Sep 2014 20:53:56 +0000 Slide3







The classic denim shirt is an iconic american staple in most women and men wardrobe.   It is such a versatile piece, it can be styled in so many ways and only the sky is the limit.  Above I show you three different ways to sport your denim shirt.  First I pair it with a fancy full skirt taffetta skirt and automatically get a feminine and pretty look.  Feel like channelling your best western, wear it with a pair of denim and accessorize with a fun scarf and hat.  Feeling for a slicker look,  pair with black leggins, tall black boots,  plaid scarf, a fedora hat for extra added drama and you are good to go!  

So ladies if you do not own a denim shirt what is holding you back?  I purchased mine at a second hand store for $15 and look how many looks this small investment got me.  I must say I am quite happy with my purchase.

If you do own a denim shirt, please do share your favorite way to wear it.  We’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

STYLIST: Jenny Vincent-Minkey

OUTFIT: Levis denim shirt (similar style available here)








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NEW YORK FASHION WEEK FAVES Mon, 08 Sep 2014 18:28:34 +0000 New York Fashion Week kicked off last week, on my birthday, September 4th!  The event isn’t officially wrapped until the 11th, but I’ve already started to round up my favorite shows.  Fashion week occurs twice a year in New York, with fall (versus spring) being the more popular event.  Interestingly, for those of you who don’t know, FFW features designs for the upcoming spring season, whereas SFW looks ahead to the fall.  The point of fashion week is to showcase what’s up and coming NOT what’s current.  So even though the fall season is barely upon us and we’re just gearing up to buy some new boots, the fashion set is already thinking ahead to Spring 2015.  Now that designers have shown their spring collections, we have a sense of the styles and trends that will be popular next year.  Check out some of my favorite shows for an idea of what to expect…hint black and white is a MAJOR theme to come.


Diane von Furstenberg

Black and white, pretty colors, florals, and fem fabrics.  Plus Kendall Jenner as a model (she looks stunning)!  Click above to view full show.

Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 10.50.32 AM current style, via


Nicole Miller

Black and white stripes, gorgeous florals, chic silhouettes, I’m obsessed!  Click above to view full show.

Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 10.54.57 AMsale style, via



Pretty pastels and beautiful textiles, this newcomer is one to watch.  Click above to view full show.

Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 10.24.49 AM
sale style, via


Sass & Bide

Black and white with pops of color, plus graphic prints and interesting layers.   Click above to view the full show.

Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 11.02.39 AM

fall collection, via



Lace, metallics, texture, and layers.  This collection is oh-so-pretty!  Click above to view the full show.

Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 10.43.27 AMfall collection, via

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LEOPARD PRINT: ALWAYS A CLASSIC Sun, 07 Sep 2014 12:00:36 +0000  Leopard is one of the hot looks for Fall 2014!

Screen Shot 2014-09-04 at 5.17.06 PMScreen Shot 2014-09-04 at 5.17.06 PMI always get a little tickled when the “hot looks” for a season are published and introduce a tried and true seasonal trend as though it’s a brand new idea.  News Flash…leopard is a hot look EVERY fall (and winter, spring and summer) because it’s a timeless classic.

I’ll use just about any excuse that I can to talk about my favorite color!  Yep, I refer to it as a singular color.  Even with its distinctive pattern, the neutrality of this print gives it the flexibility to pair with just about anything, just as a solid color would.


Scarf (here) | Pump (here) | Necklace (here) | Handbag (here) | Belt (here)

 If you’re wanting this cat to actually have more than 9 lives in your wardrobe, (Sorry, just couldn’t resist) the key is to select pieces that err more on the side of timeless and less the side super trendy styles.  This is particularly important if you are purchasing an investment piece like a handbag or pair of shoes.  There is nothing wrong with a little splurge here and there, but as you’ll see, even my more “trendy” pieces have a little bit of staying power.  My preference is to do a little of both to avoid breaking the bank.



FW 2014 Scarf  (here)


Boutique Find 2012



FW 2014 Pump (here)


Franco Sarto: Consignment shop find 2010



FW 2014 Necklace (here)


Charming Charlie’s find Spring 2012




FW 2014 Handbag (here)


Great American Leatherworks 1998



FW 2014 Belt (here)


Nine West: Purchased in 2009

Are you a leopard-phile?  Darlings, I’d love to know if it’s more of a trend for you or a something that you simply can’t live without.

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HOW TO WEAR: JEAN CUFFS AND HEELS Sat, 06 Sep 2014 16:54:23 +0000 This is a question I get a lot, What kind of high heels should I wear with my cuffed jeans? So today I am going to give your three examples of how to wear different cuff levels with the right high heel!  Look to your footwear as a guide.

NO STRAPS? NO CUFFS. Skin bearing shoes call for pants that hit right at the ankles as shown.


THIN STRAPS? THIN CUFFS. Thin straps require a sliver of cuff and a peek of ankle as shown.


THICK STRAPS? THICK CUFFS. With sturdier heels, roll your pants up twice to reveal a little more leg as shown.


Stylist: Alicia Howell

Location: Southern, Ohio

Vibe: Jeans & Heels Fun

Outfit: Ankle Jean, Unknown, similar here / Slim Cuff Jean, Unknown, similar here / Thick Cuff Jean, Unknown, similar here / No strap heels, BCBG, similar here / Thin strap heels, BCBG, similar here / Thick strap heels, Fergie, similar here

 Which level of cuffed jean is your favorite to wear?  Share in the comments!

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HOW TO WEAR NEON INTO FALL Fri, 05 Sep 2014 12:00:18 +0000 IMG_4785
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STYLIST: Marina Ignatyev
LOCATION: North Virginia / Washington DC

Some gals are afraid to wear neon because it doesn’t flatter their complexion. At some point I was one of them. In this case it’s best to wear the neon on the bottom like I did with my neon green pants (similar here). You then can balance out the bright color with neutrals like this olive green shirt.
Keep your accessories simple if you don’t want to steal the spotlight from your statement piece.
As time goes by and it gets a bit cooler wear them with:

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FALL TREND: THE SIXTIES Thu, 04 Sep 2014 16:21:49 +0000 1960s fall style trends

As a vintage girl through and through, it makes my heart race faster when I see one of my fave fashion decades walking the Fall 2014 runways at Saint Laurent, Valentino and Miu Mui to name a few. The A-line dress here, here and here, was a dominant silhouette and this versatile style can take you from your desk to a cocktail party with elegant ease. Wear with square heel knee boots or a block heel bootie , pair a sleeveless version over a chiffon blouse for daytime styling.The cape, a piece to invest in, here and here  is the sophisticated cover up of choice whether topping of a mini skirt, here and here or leather skinnies.

Channel your 60s mod muse this fall in these quintessential 60s silhouettes.

What you favorite FW14 trends?
xx Sasha

The wardrobe stylists at Urban Darling have one goal: to connect you with your style. Let us build a wardrobe you can count on™.

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LAYERING NECKLACES 101 Wed, 03 Sep 2014 11:47:19 +0000 IMG_1558

Twenty One Twelve dress similar here, Steve Madden wedges similar here

My clients are always looking for ways to spice up their wardrobe.  I always recommend adding accessories to make their looks more modern which I then hear moans and groans because they don’t feel confident doing this.  Layering necklaces is something very easy to put together and it really makes a unique statement.  While doing closet audits, I discover that my clients have tons of unused necklaces in their jewelry boxes (old gold chains, pendants, chokers). Why not put these items to good use! Here are three ways to incorporate this trend into your daily wardrobe.

The Collar Effect – I put two similar but distinct collar necklaces together to make a huge statement piece.  They work together because both have the rhinestones are set in gold. This combination is a showstopper and would turn any  LBD into a “Wow!” moment.


The Layered Pendant Look – The key here is to use graduated sizes of pendant necklaces.  Keep the shape of the pendants the same to keep the look fluid.  This look would be perfect with your typical white t-shirt for that casual jean look on the weekend.


The Eclectic Mix – Find two distinct necklaces that have the same vibe.  The pearl choker and statement necklace both have a vintage-feel so I put them together.  This is a great way to embellish a plain blouse.


The Minimalist Look – This is the easiest to achieve of the bunch.  Just layer thin chains in different lengths.  To take it up a notch, add a unique bar necklace like I did here.  This will polish up any blouse you own and give you that “I look chic without trying too hard” look.


Go and be creative.  The possibilities are endless!  What is your favorite combination? Here are some necklaces that I recommend that would be perfect for layering.


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WHITE AFTER LABOR DAY Tue, 02 Sep 2014 18:36:39 +0000 IMG_1144






We have all heard of the old saying  you can’t wear white after labor day.  While some of us think it’s an outdated rule, there are just as many who think it’s a fashion no-no to wear white after the beginning of September.

No one is completely sure when or why this fashion rule came into effect. Rumor has it, the rule came about during the late 1800s and early 1900s when the wives of the super-rich ruled high society with an iron fist.   As more and more people became wealthy, and it became more difficult to distinguish those who came from old money versus the nouveau rich, in order to tell who was acceptable and who wasn’t, the women who were already “in” felt it necessary to create dozens of fashion rules that everyone in the know had to follow. That way, if a woman showed up at the opera in a dress that cost more than most Americans made in a year, but it had the wrong sleeve length, other women would know not to give her the time of day.

Nowadays, although, there are ‘seasonal’ colors and everyone has become more relaxed about what colors to wear and when, the White after Labor Day debate just won’t go away.  While you may feel comfortable wearing white after Labor Day, don’t be surprised if some people frown at you. There are still the die-hard believers who swear by the no wearing white after Labor Day.

However, in my personal opinion it is really about the fabric and the texture or is it white white or winter white.  For example you might want to put away your white linen pants once the temperature starts to cool down and go for a more appropriate fabric such as wool in winter white.  On the other hand a white crisp cotton shirt never goes out of season.  So do use your judgment and feel free to break the rules.

So ladies when in doubt go for winter white as per the above outfit and as the name suggest you are totally season appropriate.

How do you feel about the no white rule post Labor day?  We’d love to hear from you so please do share your thoughts in the comments.

STYLIST: Jenny Vincent-Minkey

LOCATION: Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY.

VIBE: Winter White

OUTFIT: winter white felt skirt, Zara  (similar style available here ).   Silk wrap blouse, Theory (similar style available here ).  Herringbone, newspaper boy cap, Ralph Lauren  (similar style available here ). Muphy’s saddle shoes  (same style available here and similar style available here).  black handbag, Vlieger & Vandam (similar style available here )


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