Showing posts from December, 2008

Favorite Looks of 2008

I love year in review shows and magazines. Best and worst lists, however, aren't really my cup of tea. As you've gathered from reading our award show reviews, we like something a little different, expressive of personality, and memorable. Here are the looks that I can remember months later.

Several performance looks stuck out this year. Beyonce's "Sasha Fierce" look at the MTV VMAs was a variation of one of my favorite Gareth Pugh shows. Fierce indeed! Rihanna, likewise, used clothing to alter her image for a new song, and her VMA look was delightfully deranged. Also rocking at the VMAs was Pink in the most delicious trench ever.
Sarah Jessica Parker showed up on several worst dressed listed for her Sex and the City London premier ensemble. People liked her Alexander McQueen dress well enough, but the Philip Treacy hat was reviled. Personally, I liked it. It's daring and fun, and it's that what her character was known for? Most telling, I can't recall …

Polyvore Review

I've been making outfits on Polyvore for about a year now. Since I'm not inhibited by finances, my virtual closet represents my style better than my actual closet. Here's what I noticed:

-- I love black, white and red. In real life, I frequently wear my red shoes with an otherwise monochromatic outfit, but that's the only red I have! The problem with buying red in real life is that the shades will frequently clash so I have to return the item.

Ring Master by Fashion Me Fabulous

-- I want to party. Seriously, self, have you met a party frock you didn't like? Maybe I should dress up more for kicks and giggles.

-- Snakes are a style statement. Snakeskin bags and shoes, jeweled snake bangles and other snake jewelry, and even snake colors as inspiration, those little buggers are all over my virtual closet. It makes sense. Snakeskin shoes would be the perfect tough offset to my girly professional clothes. In real life, I have a pair of snake vertebrae earrings.

For When I Win…

Penelopepups Vintage

Penelopepups Vintage sells clothing ranging from the 1950s to the 1980s. If you're looking for an item that stands out as a perfect example of it's era, this is the shop to try. In addition to dresses, they stock a nice selection of coats and tops.
60s crochet mini dress $65
70s African print tunic $30
80s cut out jacket $40

The Horror: Acid Party

A friend of mine told me that when he was in college in the early 70s, people would take acid and stare at food coloring swirling in a bowl of water for hours. I think one of those people now designs clothing and in a fit of nostalgia, made this psychedelic rhinestone gown. Not only does it look like the sort of dress you'd wear to compete in the International Miss Hooter competition, but it's also a crazy $358.

Plus Size Interview Looks

Reader Suzy asked us a favor before Christmas. She has an interview coming up and needs something professional and stylish that doesn't look outdated or frumpy. Suzy, I hope you like what we've found. Let us know if you're looking for anything else. And good luck with your interview!

This Patrizia suit from IGIGI is not only stunning, but it is also classic, feminine, and on sale! This pretty ruffled, tailored jacket with matching pants and skirt will never go out of style. If you invest in such a quality jacket, buying both bottoms is a good idea for expanding your wardrobe options. On sale, all three pieces cost $220. This is a steal for a complete suit.

If you have a pair of basic black pants, a classic jacket will complete your suit. This jacket by Calvin Klein has nice tailoring and a flattering shape. You'll be able to wear it for years to come. It costs $152.60 on sale.

This Jones New York suit is a little more basic than the first one and also has the option for s…

New Year's Looks Under $75

It doesn't matter if you listen to Modest Mouse or Miley Cyrus. It doesn't matter if you drive an SUV to class or bike to work. No matter who you are, chances are you're feeling the financial pinch. While this often means denying yourself, a party can be just the thing to perk you up. If you're worried about attending a party because you don't have anything to wear, here are three complete looks for everyone. Now go dance your troubles away.

Girly Girl has been cutting out manicures and her roots are showing. She'd like to get back to feeling feminine. Total $74.54
floral print dress, Forever 21 $24.80
lilac clutch, Payless $16.99
Barbie pumps, Pleaser, Endless $24.95
pink drop earrings, Forever 21 $7.80

Chic Sophisticate is filling her social schedule with free poetry readings, but regrets that she can't buy any books. She wants to look as sharp as she feels. Total $73.29
charcoal maxi dress, Twelve by Twelve $46
sequin wallet, Forever 21 $7.50
platform sandals, Pa…

Wearable Winter White

I have a weakness for white boots. It's like craving Doritos when you should be eating salad. You want it even though it will bring a few moments' pleasure and long bouts of misery. There is no way such a delicate creation could survive in Indiana's puddled parking lots and slushy streets. Alas, the weather holds me back from building the ultimate Ice Queen ensemble. Sweeping in for the rescue is the "Sabrina" by oh...DEER! This sleek taupe boot is a waterproof patent so you wouldn't end up with dirty grey toes or scuzzy water marks. Plus, the heel is thick enough for them to be feasible on the ice. They are $329.95 on Endless and also available in black.

Fantasy Shopping

All my shopping lately involves paint cans, light fixtures, doorknobs and drapes. I'm afraid to pop in to Target or Goodwill because I'll convince myself I can spend that $15 on something cute for me instead of keeping it in the house fund. It's times like these that I curb my desire to shop with a trip to Net-a-Porter, because I'll never talk myself into dropping $200 on an impulse buy.

Just looking at this Vivienne Westwood wiggle dress makes me feel sexy. I've instantly transformed from a headachey blogger sitting on the couch to a lithe actress on the talk show circuit promoting her new movie.

Anna Sui has two very different dresses on sale. I loved this striped number when Agyness Deyn trotted it down the catwalk. It makes me think of a candy striper gone rouge. The black lace mini dress can be dressed up for a gothic mod look. If you're interested, get shopping because both dresses are almost sold out.

Why Aren't You Noshing Nog?


Over-the-knee Boots

I've always wanted a pair of boots that comes to mid-thigh. Black leather is preferable. Alexander McQueen has a specific pair I'd like, but I'm fairly certain they are "price upon request". In fact, I've never seen thigh high leather boots for less than $1000. This season, Report Signature delivered the "Fairfax," a sexy, hem skimming number for half the price of everything else I've seen. I'd like to think they'll go on sale, but with only 8, 8.5 and 9 left at Endless and 9 and 10 at Shopbop, it's more likely they'll sell out before I can even post this. Endless also sells the "Fairfax" in fully stocked brown.

Velvet Blazers

Velvet is a large part of the country gentlewoman trend, but I think a velvet blazer is a wardrobe standard for winter. Dress it up with a skirt and silk blouse. Dress it down with jeans, a tee and a hoodie. Velvet blazers are a great way to stay warm in your favorite party dress too. With Christmas coming up, the stores should be stocked with them. Better still, they'll be marked for clearance next week.Top: navy long blazer, Victoria's Secret $168
textured jacket with pelpum, Victorian Trading Company $179.95
Bottom: black zip puff sleeve jacket, Marc by Marc Jacobs, Shopbop $236.60
black tux blazer, Target $39.99
beaded pocket jacket, Nanette Lepore, Bluefly $211.99

Save or Splurge: Heart Shaped Clutch

Do you ever find yourself wanting an item that looks adorable, but costs a little more than you would normally spend? Jael Paris found this cute heart shaped clutch, which costs $50. We both think that's a bit much for a clutch.

However, this one has a lot of possibilities. We see Zooey Deschanel working it into her playful, youthful look. It could add a lot of fun to any outfit, making a simple look more interesting or playing into an over-the-top look very well.

Would you be willing to splurge on such an item? Or does the dollar amount trump the cuteness and possibilties?

Dirty Bird Vintage

Dirty Bird Vintage is yet another Etsy shop that loves vintage enough to price it affordably. The shop is stocked primarily with bohemian style clothes with a dash of glamour girl, but nothing screams a specific decade. If you're looking for some quality clothes, try The Bird.
yellow empire waist dress $22
white sequin top $10

Love or Loathe: Renaissance Skimmer

Were these ankle wrap skimmers actually made by a leather worker from a renaissance faire, I don't think I'd mind them. They would make good footwear for garb. As it is, they are from Urban Outfitters. Perhaps it's my non-hipster status but I can't imagine what they would possibly go with. Maybe Ray Bans and a mini version of a grandma dress?

Frye Adrienne On Sale

We love these boots. You love these boots. The Frye "Adrienne" is a well-made bundle of buttony goodness. If you are a size 7, you can snag the black pair from Endless for $320.90. You'll save over $75!

Cropped Pants

I've been looking for a stand out pair of pants. Laura Dawson's cropped pants fit the bill. They're organic cotton twill making them easy to care for. The sheen makes them nice enough for special occasions but they'd still work for every day. Pair them with knee boots and they'll be perfect for winter. I want the black, but they are also available in charcoal. Smashing Darling sells them for $90.

10 Evening Bags Under $45


Fashion Find: Last Minute Holiday Shopping

Christmas is almost here, and if you're like me, there is still shopping to do. There are two stores I can rely on for fashionable and affordable finds in a hurry though, T.J. Maxx and Marshalls. I've already written about Marshalls Shoe Mega Shop and The Cube. If you add to those all the new fall and winter styles with the designer deals they have and all that T.J. Maxx has to offer you can get great gifts and not break your budget.

If you think you're going to be buying last season or seconds at these stores, think again. Recently, I've found better deals than ever before. I saw a dress at T.J. Maxx for $30, and this same dress is on sale at Nordstrom for $130. A savings of $100. Now that puts me in the Christmas spirit. What's your best T.J. Maxx or Marshalls find?

Shoe of the Week: Gabriella Rocha Studio Falin

The harsh Midwestern winter has made itself very obvious this past week. Its ever present ice has made it very difficult for me to stay upright when walking outside. The wetness, slipperiness and chilliness have forced me into rather ugly footwear since tread that keeps me from falling has trumped fashion.

These cute boots from Gabriella Rocha, however, would allow me to remain both stylish and standing. They have a fun bow, some serious tread on the bottom, and they look warm. Also, the gray color may actually be useful in the hiding salt stains from the roads since it looks like the color that shows up on my dark shoes when I wear them out in this weather. (They come in black too).

This wearable winter boot costs $115.

This Week on Fashion Me Fabulous

-- Be warm. Anthropologie sweaters are on sale, and becca found some fabulous hats on Etsy.

-- Turn New Year's party expectations on it's head by wearing a chic tuxedo.

-- I've rounded up the best plus size party dresses available.

-- Don't want sore feet from dancing the night away? Try out some of these fashionable party flats.

-- We have party outfit ideas whether you need to run to the event from work or just need to make an impression on your conservative aunts.

The Horror: The Shame

Rachel Pally, this dress is bad and you should feel bad. While putting together a post about plus size dresses for New Year's Eve, I tripped over this coco mumu. It has no shape! All women have trouble spots on our bodies we'd like to cover and nice spots we'd like to highlight. This dress eliminates the breasts, waistline and legs. A curvy woman in this gown will just be a brown column. The only thing this dress highlights is the arms, and I have yet to hear a plus size woman say "I want everyone to be looking at my biceps!" Designers, it wouldn't kill you to actually design a dress for your plus size line, but if you're putting out mumus for these lovely ladies, you should feel ashamed.

Project Design: Cozy Winter Hats

Project Design is our own friendly competition where we put together collection of independent designers for you to rate on your very own imaginary runway.

Baby, it's cold outside. And the whipping winter winds will wreak havoc on your hair. So, snuggle up with a warm winter hat to keep you cute and cozy in the cold, cold world. Which hat will warm your head this winter?

Knitted hat 158 by aspasia

Pui Hat by studiowonjun

Chunky Grey Wool Hat by MaxMelody

East End Pure wool hat by tomokotahara

Racer felt cap by FERUTO

Multi Tone Ear Flap Hat by HelenHats

poll by

Holiday Makeup

Not sure what makeup to wear with your glam frock and killer heels? Sick of the standard smoky eye or red lip? Here are some fun ideas and inspirations.

1. Lashes! Last year I tried false lashes, and they perfectly topped off my 60s vibe. I'm tempted to invest in some crazy feather or glitter lashes this year.
2. Dramatic colored eyeshadow Don't be afraid of colorful makeup, especially if your dress leans to the dull side. Try liner that contrasts your shadow. Layer. Paint outside the lines. If you're really unsure, read the makeup tutorials on Doe Deere, creator of many of the looks in this collage.3. Gothic lips Proud of your pucker? Stain it deep shades of burgundy, purple, blue or black. As long as you keep your eyes clean and simple, you should look like the queen of the party instead of mistress of the dark.
4. Bare face Admit that you are beautiful. Wipe on some foundation, a bit of mascara, and some faintly pink lip gloss. When you're 40, you can look back at pict…

$150 Challenge: Prim & Proper Holiday Look

If you have a holiday occasion to attend that's a little more conservative like an office party or your reserved aunt's Christmas gathering then you may need an outfit that is a little more prim and proper. This look from Forever 21 is both conservative with the short sleeved tweed dress and fun with the sparkly embellishments and accessories. Best of all, these basic black pieces will work well with the rest of your wardrobe for many parties to come. The entire look costs $149.10.

$150 Challenge: Prim & Proper Holiday Look by Fashion Me Fabulous
Sable Faux Fur Shrug, Forever 21, $32.40
Frayed Tweed Dress, Twelve by Twelve, Forever 21, $42
Ebony Chandelier Earrings, Forever 21, $3.80
Jeweled Metallic Bow Headband, Forever 21, $3.80
Oblong Jewel Gunmetal Ring, Forever 21, $5.80
Oval Jewels Elastic Bracelet, Forever 21, $6.80
Fab Basic Tights (3 Pairs), Forever 21, $4.80
Tiered Sequin Clutch, Forever 21, $19.80
Grosgrain Pump, Forever 21, $19.80

Fun Coat, Good Will

Foundation Garments is dedicated to selling clothing made in ethical environments, so they've stocked up on good designed and made in the US and Canada. Most of the garments are made of natural fabrics as well. This asymmetrical ruffled coat is just one example of the fun clothes available at Foundation Garments. The prices vary by designer and piece, but usually range from $50-$250. Check out their sale section for some great bargains.

Plus Size Party Dresses


Evening Flats


Etsy Shop of the Week: Terry Graziano

The perfect ladylike hat that is unique and practical for daily wear has long eluded me. I just couldn't find one with the right look. Until now.

Terry Graziano makes stunning hats that are not only ladylike, unique and perfect, but they are also meant to be worn several different ways which means you won't get bored with the look. Now my only problem is that I can't pick a favorite. I'm stuck. I want them all.

Each hat is handmade and adjustable, which is great because most hats don't fit me properly. Visit Terry Graziano's shop to see more lovely designs like this Confidante hat ($75).

The Horror: Adventures in Advertising

I'm so cold. I should put on a cardigan. I'm still cold. A scarf should help. Still cold and breezy. Hot coco might fix it, but I've been working so hard on my abs...