An ongoing love affaire with all things fashionable, tasty and fun

Posts tagged “cropped blazer

{International} Aqua Giveaway

I’m a huge fan of the traditional black blazer – It’s a versatile, classic piece and no woman should be without one. I practically live in my Aqua cropped black blazer, both at work and on the weekends.

Lookbook

{MCLV Style: Lady Of The Night}

And since I truly believe that this fabulous little blazer is a Must Have I’m going to give away one to a lucky reader.

Entering this little contest is QUICK & EASY – I promise – There are TWO different ways to enter so pick either of the simple options below and you’ll have this fun new piece to play with in just a few days!

  1. Leave a comment below on this post telling me what you’d pair this blazer with
  2. Leave a comment on Facebook telling me what you’d pair this blazer with

AquaMCLV

{Size Medium}

Easy, right?

So what are you waiting for? Go ahead & enter either on the blog or on Facebook and I will randomly pick a winner a week from today – Next Friday, February 22nd!

* Please note that this is NOT a sponsored post – I purchased this blazer in order to give it away on MCLV


MCLV Style: Embellish Me

Fun accessories and embellished pieces are a great way to take a basic look to a new level. So next time you’re putting together a nighttime look be creative and layer on the extras!

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{You can shop similar pieces by clicking these hyperlinks: Pleated Leather SkirtThe Limited, Embellished Top – Zara, Oxblood Knit Tights – DKNY via Bloomingdales, Spike Embellished HeelsThe LimitedBlack Patent Clutch – MICHAEL Michael Kors via NordstromRing – BCBG Max Azria & Bracelet – Forever 21}

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{You can view this outfit on Lookbook.nu and Pose}

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{Check out outtakes from this shoot here – Just log into Facebook to view}

This outfit could have just been black skirt + black top but with the addition of brightly colored tights, an embellished collar, fun jewelry, and spiked heels it’s a more one-of-a-kind look. But I did discover that the downside of this too-cute pleated faux leather skirt from The Limited is that it wrinkles sooooo easily. And quickly. Thus the absence of straight-on shots!

What’s your favorite fun extra this Winter or the piece you’re most excited to try out?


MCLV Style: Lazy Stripes

Sometimes what a girl needs is layers. And lots of them. This was a look that I threw together for a CrossFit competition a few weeks ago – The keys for that kind of day are :(1) Comfortable, (2) Easy to move in, and (3) Warm! The third ended up being especially important as the venue had a huge open door and it started raining when we first got there!

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{You can shop similar pieces by clicking these hyperlinks: Striped Sweater Tunic – H&M, Leggings – Forever 21, Cropped BlazerBanana Republic, Studded Ankle Boots – C Label via Piperlime, Patent Satchel Express, Skull Pendant Asos, and Bracelets – H&M, Asos & JewelMint}

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{You can view this outfit on Lookbook.nu and Pose}

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{Check out outtakes from this shoot here – Just log into Facebook to view}

I have a confession to make. This blazer is one of the oldest {non-heirloom} pieces in my closet. My mother bought it for me SEVEN years ago when she took me on a shopping trip to equip me for interviewing and starting my first post-collegiate job. When people say “classic” or “investment piece” this, my friends, is what they’re referring to!

Do you have any classic, it’ll-always-be-in-style pieces in your wardrobe? What’s your favorite investment piece that you’ve bought over the years?


MCLV Style: Lady of the Night

If you’re a MCLV regular you’ve probably noticed that most of the personal fashion featured on my site is either work-related or geared toward daytime styling – I’m not much of a late night girl these days. My weeks are filled to the brim with stress, deadlines, To Do Lists, and social obligations, so when the weekends roll around I’m much more interested in sleeping in, running errands, and relaxing than I am in partying the night away. Clubbing, dancing, and all-night bar hopping are things of the past it would seem.

But every once in a while there’s a social obligation or outing that requires dressing up and getting off my laptop for a night of fun and frivolity – And I definitely enjoy those evenings!

{You can shop similar pieces by clicking these hyperlinks: Printed TrousersZara, Narciso Rodriguez Sequined Top – Kohl’s, Blazer – Aqua via Bloomingdale’s,  ClutchExpress, Ankle Strap HeelsFendiSkull & Spike Bracelets – Asos.com, Chainlink Bracelet – JewelMint, Star Ring – BCBG, Swarovski Crystal Ring – Gift & Elephant Pendant – Sasha Maks Vintage from her recent Holiday Trunk Show}

{You can view this outfit on both Lookbook.nu and Pose}

{Check out outtakes from this shoot here – Just log into Facebook to view}

That being said, on occasion I relish the opportunity to enjoy a night out on the town – Whether it’s a date night, a girls night out, or just dinner and drinks in the neighborhood – Sometimes it’s fun to get all dressed up and enjoy some cocktails & laughs.

When I get dressed for a night out I like to pair something fun – And maybe new – With my favorite tried and true pieces. This blazer is one of my all time favorites {Aque via Bloomingdale’s} and I’ve come to love this tank for its layering capabilities.

I’m a skirt & dress girl through-and-through but I’m absolutely mad about all of the great pants for Fall and Winter this season. Prints, brocades, plaids, lace & stripes… Are you stocking up on pants this season as well?


MCLV Style: Multicolored Pleats

As you very well know, I am a fan of pleats. I like how fresh and crisp they can look, and pleated skirts are my current favorite, whether they’re solid colored, short, or high-waisted. This multi-colored pleated skirt from SugarLips fit the bill perfectly and I was honored when they sent me the piece so that I could review it.

{Pleated Skirt – SugarLips, Thick Strap Tank – Zara, Cropped Blazer – Aqua from Bloomingdale’s, Necklace – Forever 21, Bracelet – BCBG, Handbag – Givenchy & Heeled Sandals – Madeline Stuart}

{If you like this look you can HYPE it on Lookbook.nu, shop similar pieces on ASOS Fashion Finder, or click the hyperlinks above to shop comparable pieces and visit related store websites}

Check out more outtakes from this shoot here – just log into your Facebook account to view.

I tried this out with my favorite BCBG blouse but I liked the sleek look of the black tank and the cropped blazer with the skirt; it made the look work for either the office or an evening out. And you know how much I adore a versatile look!

Now tell me, have you tried out the pleats trend this Summer? Are you a fan of multicolored pieces like this adorable skirt that can be styled in multiple ways?


Weekend Wonderland

I have to admit that I look forward to family events like a little kid on Christmas Eve, and luckily for me this past weekend was my dear Auntie’s birthday party.

The Queen’s Jubilee celebration if you will.

Oh what a night.

We celebrated with a stylish catered dinner party in her beautiful backyard which turned out to be a mini family reunion with champagne toasts & heartfelt speeches, pink nail polish comparisons, pets, pets, pets. Oh, and an enthusiastic dance party on the patio.

When the camera came out my cousins made jokes about needing to smile and look their best for pictures since they could end up on this blog. They kept shouting “blog” instead of “cheese.”

Gotta love having such an accepting & supportive family!

As it turned out all of the cousins all wore dresses to the event. From left to right: an embroidered cream strapless midi-length dress, a brightly patterned one-shouldered dress belted at the waist, and a sweet purple sundress paired with a white lace jacket.

And pink toenail polish.

Quite the stylish group of ladies if we do say so ourselves. 🙂

I wore a black & white floral Anthropologie top tucked into a black pleated Zara mini skirt, a cropped Aqua blazer, patent leather Oxford booties, and tons of gold necklaces & bracelets.

Do you like to be social over the weekends or just kick back and relax at home? If you enjoy the occasional outing, do you like to get dressed up or take advantage of being away from work to relax your personal style?


Blazing For Spring

In addition to my stripe obsession for Spring 2012, I’m also really feeling the bright blazer trend for this season (Spring 2012 Trends: What You Should Wear). There are some great versions out there, that I’ve seen in stores, in the pages of magazines, on blogs, walking down the street. From patterned and striped blazers perfect for updating a monochromatic look to denim or seersucker perfect for staying cool, there are more choices than even I can stock my closet with!

Brights:

A bright blazer can take an outfit from basic to anything but, so check out these women in their colored blazers and follow their lead – From classic navy to one-of-a-kind bright and bold colors.

Elisa embraces not only the floral trend for Spring, but takes her look to the next level by pairing her Dries Van Noten dress with a navy boyfriend blazer. J’aime!

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Atlantic-Pacific is a vision in red, white, & blue. This is such a great, well put together look. The stripes look great with the red blazer and the bag brings everything together perfectly.

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Not only is this a fun, flattering pink, the rolled sleeves are too cute – I love the visible striped cuffs.

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This look is simple, but terribly chic. Basic maxi dress, blue boyfriend blazer, and one hell of a statement necklace. Add a personal touch or two, like rolling your sleeves up, and you’re good to go!

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Prints & Patterns:

Feeling feisty? Why not pair a not-so-basic blazer with your outfit to spice things up sartorially? Bold patterns and prints are a great way to make your blazer unique this Spring and Summer.

Mad for plaid? This look is anything but boring with a plaid blazer being paired with denim cut-off shorts and a patterned pussy bow blouse.

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I love polka dots and Liu Wen shows us just how to wear a fun, bold blazer in a low-key manner. She keeps the rest of her outfit basic and lets the blazer take center stage.

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Such a cute, fresh look for Spring. Why not add a little floral to your life like Jules?

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Stripes are a great way to go, and they can be amped up in a variety of different ways. Miss Knowles shows us just how to make a blazer nightlife appropriate in Gucci Gucci Gucci.

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Summer Loving:

Not quite sure how to work a blazer into your warm-weather outfits? Check out how these ladies make a blazer work for them – paired with shorts, slim pants, and minis to keep you cool.

Kate King pairs her short-shorts with a navy single-button blazer for a great Summer look.

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What says summer better than splashes of bright colors? Skip the little sun dress and try bright skinnies and a fun colored blazer!

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A chic little blazer over a mini dress is the perfect way to deal with a breezy day. Or you can roll up the sleeves & pair with sandals on a warm day!

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A brightly colored floral blazer with a sundress is a great way to stay and look cool!

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White Hot:

If brights and stand-out prints aren’t your style, why not go for sleek 70’s elegance and glamour? Channel Bianca Jaggar, Halston, and Yves Saint Laurent in white blazers.

This white boyfriend blazer with the rolled sleeves is a little bit Miami Vice and a little bit Diane Keaton, and works quite well with her slouchy rolled pants and paisley blouse.

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A white blazer (or white suit) is SUCH a statement look. Modern. Sharp. Smart. Fashionable.

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This black, white, and red combo really makes her white blazer pop. This is a great example of a look that could easily go from day to night, just switch up the accessories and keep that white blazer on!

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A white blazer doesn’t have to be boring, Be Frassy spices up her look with a neon top, statement jewelry, and fun platform sandals.

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So what do you think? Are you ready to spice up your blazer collection and try something new and exciting for Spring/Summer 2012?


Fashion Inspiration

Fashion isn’t just about what you wear, what goes on your body. It’s truly an expression of yourself that extends far beyond your clothes.

“Fashion is everything. Art, music, furniture design, graphic design, hair, makeup, architecture, the way cars look – all those things go together to make a moment in time.”  – Tom Ford

And just as fashion isn’t limited to the cloth that we wrap ourselves in, inspiration can also be found in many forms.

I began clipping pictures from magazines as a pre-adolescent, not so much fashion photos, just pictures that caught my eye, things that I found eye-catching or memorable or mesmerizing.

As I became interested in fashion however, my clipping habits became more focused. And while I don’t confine myself to photographs of clothing and accessories, I’ve found that my love of fashion gives this activity more direction and purpose. I’ve found that even without context, pictures can serve a creative function. 

They excite. They encourage. They inspire. 

The beauty and artistry captured by a photographer can be moving, regardless of the medium. Advertisements, promotional materials, editorials, art, home decor…

 

 I’ve found that by keeping these images available to myself I can stay out of a fashion rut. They provide new ideas and inspiration, get my creative juices flowing, and motivate me to grow and evolved. I highly recommend creating and maintaining a Look Book, a collection of images that make you smile, that invigorate you, that make you push your boundaries.

Whether it’s a physical book filled with clippings like mine are, or Boards on Pinterest, this is a great creative and inspirational outlet. Keeping pictures of looks that you like, styles that call to you, photos that take your breath away, can all be great tools to keep your approach to fashion fresh and interesting.

What’s your favorite way to get inspired?


Real Girls Need Real Closets

I don’t know about you, but I adore closets. Adore. I’ve been keeping scrapbooks filled with magazine clippings for years {Fashion Inspiration} – Clothing, home decor, art, handbags, accessories & jewelry, hairstyles, fabulous photography, hotels & vacation destinations… And closets. So many beautiful closets. I may be alone in this, but I genuinely get the chills when I look at a well-organized closet.

And on that note, today I want to discuss closet basics with you. The building blocks – if you will – to a creating your very own, chill-inducing closet.

I’ve read countless books, blog posts, newspaper pieces, and magazine articles on what the essentials of a woman’s wardrobe should be. And while I adore Harper’s Bazaar, Elle, Rachel Zoe’s Style A to Zoe and the like, their recommendations can seem like they’re geared towards a fantasy jet-setting lifestyle or an heiresses’ allowance.

Neither of which I have.

Below is the real girl’s guide to picking out the key elements to incorporate into your wardrobe, including suggestions for where to look for these items, hopefully everyone can find something that appeals to both their personal style and their pocketbook!

Button-down:

A white button down is quite versatile and a great piece to have in your closet. It can be worn tucked into slacks or a pencil skirt for work, or you can wear it with a pair of shorts or slim pants on weekends. This is an especially key piece given all of the menswear inspired collections the last few seasons.

{I love the pristine formality of this tuxedo-style button down, it makes me feel like Fred Astaire when I wear it!}

The key to the right button down is a combination of fabric and cut. You want to make sure that the fabric isn’t too thin or overly see-through – unless that’s your goal, you little minx – and that the buttons don’t gap when it’s done up. I would suggest trying a few on in stores to ensure the fit. Great places to find a good, basic button down? In the past I’ve had success finding good versions at Gap, Banana Republic, and Zara {the version above is Zara}.

Trench Coat:

No matter how frumpy I’m feeling all I need to do is throw on a trench and I feel like Audrey Hepburn.  Tan, black and navy are all good choices for your closet, or red if you’re feeling daring.

The trench above is one of my favorites, I especially adore the polka-dotted lining. I got it at H&M in London YEARS ago and am still wearing it to death. Trench coats can really run the gamut price wise. You can find a decent one for under $150 at Nordstrom or online at bluefly.com, while the Ferrari of trench coats, Burberry, will cost you closer to $1,500. I recommend keeping an eye out for sales at department stores like Bloomingdale, Neiman Marcus, Saks, and even Macys, since they’ll have a larger selection and you can find exactly what you’re looking for (double-breasted, wool, knit, flared, cropped, ankle-length etc).

Jeans:

If you’ve been following MCLV for a while you’ve probably picked up on the fact that I’m not much of a jeans girl by now. That being said, I do believe that everyone should have, at the very least, a pair or two of nice jeans in their repertoire.

Just in case.

My current favorites are these cropped black Juicy denim pants – They’re cute with pumps or flats, can be dressed up or down with ease, and fit like a dream. Jeans are another article of clothing that I believe must be tried on rather than ordered online. Fit, length, snugness… All these aspects are crucial to finding the right pair. Stores like Bloomingdale’s and Nordstrom are great because they have large denim departments so you can try on various pairs and have your very own Goldilocks moment. Too big. Too tight. Juuust right!

Pearls:

A pearl necklace is a must and instantly adds a touch of Breakfast At Tiffany’s to any ensemble. Don’t panic though, there’s plenty of costume jewelry on the market that will perfectly suit your needs and wont break the bank. Macy’s, Ann Taylor and J.Crew have great classic versions and Lord & Taylor, Kenneth Jay Lane and Max & Cleo have some funkier versions if you’re looking for something with a modern edge. And don’t worry if a single strand, a la grandma, isn’t your style. Try multiple twisted strands, versions with metal and stones intertwined with the pearls or even a drop pendant.

{Kenneth Jay Lane for Bergdorf Goodman}

LBD:

Originated by Coco Chanel in the 1920’s, the Little Black Dress became an overnight sensation and an instant classic. Whatever your personal style, there’s a LBD with your name on it out there. Strapless, long-sleeved, knee-length, mid-thigh, lace insets, sheer panels, cutouts, interesting fabrics and textures… So many choices, only 7 nights in a week! I love a little lace for nighttime, so I was thrilled when I found the Jill Stuart dress above, which fulfilled all of my current loves: flattering cut, eye-catching details and a design that is just a little bit naughty. The nude panels and lace make a relatively conservative cut younger and more fun. Paired with booties and a fitted blazer, parfait for a night out on the town! You can find a LBD at most stores, but my recommendation would be to keep an eye on websites like shopbop.com, theoutnet.com, bluefly.com and Zappos Couture for steals on designer frocks.

Blazer:

A well-made, fitted blazer in black or navy is crucial to a girl’s wardrobe. Paired with slacks or a skirt, or worn over a dress for work, over jeans or a cocktail dress during your off-hours. I love the juxtaposition of silhouettes when a cropped blazer tops off a short, flirty frock. As with trenches, a blazer come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Boyfriend length, shrunken, ruffled, embellished, linen, knit, tuxedo-inspired. The options are unlimited.

If you get a quality piece and stick with a more classic cut, a blazer can truly last. The one above was purchased during my first mom-sponsored work shopping trip before I started the interview circuit my senior year of college and in the last six weeks I’ve worn it with black slacks and a sweater to work, and over cropped, slim black pants and a tunic on a weekend. This one is from Banana Republic, I would also check out Zara, Anne Taylor and J.Crew for other classic versions.

Handbag:

I should probably preface this section by confessing that I have a slight purse problem. Don’t worry though. I’m looking for a 12 step program.

Every girl needs a good, basic handbag. Something that will go with virtually any outfit, during any season. It’s fun to switch up your bag as seasons and trends come and go, but having a well-made bag that you can always count on is a must.

The first picture is the love of my life, found on super-sale at Barney’s New York. There are many shapes and sizes out there, so heading into a store to see how a new design looks on your arm is a good idea (you wouldn’t take your arm candy out for a night on the town without seeing how he looks in the mirror, would you?) I recommend keeping an eye on the handbag sales at Bloomingdale, Nordstrom and Saks Fifth Avenue for great deals.

Clutch:

The perfect way to accessorize your LBD is a clutch. There are many choices out there, crystal and stone embellished satin, jeweled, envelope, metal box clutches, classic black snake-skin… There’s something for everyone! The black beaded clutch above was handed down to me from my grandmother and I love the old-fashioned glamour it evokes.

And luckily for all the purse-lovers out there, clutches aren’t just for nighttime anymore. Day clutches have been making appearances over the last few seasons, especially in lighter colors and fun patterns. And as much as I love my giant carryalls, it’ll probably be good for my posture, shoulders and neck if I stop carrying around half of my apartment with me each day. The Asos Portfolio Clutch pictured above is currently en route to my apartment and I plan to love the lining out of it all Spring!

Black pumps:

The right shoe can change your life! {At this point my mother is reading this and shaking her head sadly, wondering where she went wrong with me}

But really. It can.

There was a time when I did not believe this and *gasp* wore cheap shoes. But I have seen the light! It is worth the time, effort and money to find shoes that genuinely fit your feet and are well made. Always try on shoes before buying them to make sure. My favorite brands for work heels are Franco Sarto, Cole Haan, BCBG, BCBGirl, Max Studio, Fendi and Calvin Klein.

My number one tip for picking the right shoe? Know your limits! Have you ever seen a woman shuffle-strutting down the street with tiny, delicate steps? Her heels are too high. Don’t be that woman! Stay in your comfort zone so that you can walk easily and naturally.

Boots:

I think that a woman should have a few different types of boots in her closet. Booties to wear with pants or a cocktail dress, knee-high black boots for dresses and skirts, a neutral colored boot that can be worn during non-boot seasons and, if necessary for your region, rainboots.

{As a semi-aquatic resident of the lake formerly known as San Francisco, rain boots are a must. I tested my new Hunters out a few weekends ago in Sonoma, splashing and wading through puddles and generally making a nuisance of myself. And I’m happy to report that they are, in fact, waterproof.}

{The booties below are my current favorites, I always feel a little rock n’ roll when I throw them on}

{This is a Spring look that I put together with the help of Shopstyle to show lighter colored boots worn in a non-Wintery way}

Flats

From Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe to Michelle Obama and Carla Buni-Sarkozy, everyone loves a good pair of flats. My personal favorites are Ruby & Bloom, J.Crew, H&M, and, yes, Jessica Simpson. For me, breaking in flats results in drastically more blisters and uncomfortable moments than heels, so the key for me is to find flats that are soft. Below are my not initially soft, but finally broken in sparkly Dorothy flats from the Vera Wang for Kohl’s collection.

And with these tips, I leave you. Go forth and conquer your closets!

Veni, vidi, vici!

{Photographs are mine unless otherwise cited – Click on the images from other sites and you will be taken to the original source}