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

Posts tagged “Fall jackets

Holiday Discoveries

I love the holidays – don’t get me wrong – but usually by mid-December I run out of steam & all I can do is day-dream about sleeping in, weekends without holiday parties & social obligations, or just taking a vacation from my non-stop life in general. And this year has been no different – However I found that I did a much better job of staying on top of my responsibilities this year so here are some photos of the fun things that kept me in the holiday spirit throughout November & December!

Lookbook

{I may not have made it out for the Christmas tree lighting – But I’ve made it to Union Square to take pictures in front of the giant tree not once, but twice this year. A+!}

Brands

{Shopping – online & in-stores – has been a major part of my life the last month or so. From Christmas presents to host & hostess gifts to completely unnecessary additions to my wardrobe.}

Collage

{Related to the shopping issues is the “attending events held IN shops” part of the last few months – From swoon worthy vintage jewelry trunk shows to Marrakech-inspired clothing lines that’ll make you yearn for Spring.}

Collage

{I was especially excited to attend the Harputs presents Camille K trunk show because it gave me a great opportunity to check out smaller, local clothing & jewelry shops.}

Collage

{An amazing visit to the Mountain View atelier for the fabulous vintage jewelry shop Camille K – Stay tuned for another solo post on this amazing trip!}

I’m looking forward to seeing what January has to hold for me though and I’m also looking forward to sharing the fun details with all of you as well!


Happy Holidays!

Here’s wishing you all an amazing holiday season – Enjoy your much deserved time away from work, spending time with your families, and delicious, festive Winter treats!

MerryChristmas


Links You’ll Love

Fashion:

Diane

You’ve got your dress, you’ve picked up the perfect shade of lipstick for your pout, now what to do with your hair? Harper’s Bazaar has some fabulous ideas with their Holiday Hair Ideas – Celebrity Inspired Holiday Hair Ideas.

If you’re a makeup lover then you’ll adore this post & all of the color inspiration – Spring 2014 Color Trends.

The runways were filled with sheer hemlines last season but sometimes it’s hard to see how these beautiful trends can be translated to the street. Wonder no longer! The Sartorialist – If You’re Thinking About…… Sheer Hems.

MirandaCollage

If you loved my latest MCLV Stye File: Miranda Kerr in Victoria Beckham post you’re adore all of the fabulous Miranda Kerr looks featured on My Dress My High Heels My Style – Miranda Kerr in 3.1 Phillip Lim & Balenciaga {Left} and Miranda Kerr in Proenza Schouler {Right}.

Haven’t gotten enough shopping yet this year? Check out Mama’s A Rolling Stone’s Your Holiday 2012 Shopping Guide for some more tips & sales for the remaining days of 2012.

Health & Fitness:

Tis the season for… Getting really really sick. Having recently been taken down by a stomach flu I’m reminded how the cold, wet weather makes this the season for the cold, the flu, and other holiday-ruining ailments. So help boost your immune system this season with Green Thickie’s Cold and Flu Busting Coconut and Orange Smoothie.

run

Adorable workout clothes are a great way to get yourself motivated for a gym session. Don’t believe me? Just take a look at these cute duds over at NYC Pretty.

Taking your lunch to work is a great way to not only save a few dollars, but to ensure that you have healthy options to choose from for your lunch and for your midday snacking. If you’re just starting this practice or you’re running out of tasty choices check out Women’s Health’s 10 Healthy Lunch Ideas.

There are an endless number of delicious options out there for festive holiday cookies but one of my favorites this season has been Peas And Thank You’s Candy Cane Crinkle Cookies.

Given the chatter around the recent ballot measure relating to organic food, GMO, and labeling I thought that this piece from Mark’s Daily Apple was particularly relevant right now – 7 Foods You Don’t Need to Buy Organic.


Proust Questionnaire

One of my favorite ways to wake up during the week is a cup of tea and leisurely catching up on all my favorite blogs. Recently on The Man Repeller Leandra published the Proust Questionnaire and I adored not only her post and the questionnaire itself, but also all of the amazing comments that the piece produced from her readers.

Thoreau

So in that vein I’d like to share the same Questionnaire with you all as I’m dying to hear what you have to say – I’ll show you mine if you show me yours! 🙂

Your favorite virtue(s) – Kindness, empathy & compassion

Your favorite qualities in a man – Sense of humor

Your favorite qualities in a woman – Self confidence! The whole judging & ripping apart other women out of insecurity has GOT TO STOP ladies. We’re better than that!

Your favorite occupation – Artists & anything that takes that kind of vision & creativity – I’m so envious of those types of personalities and the professions that evolve from their passion!

Your chief characteristic – Um… Organization? Is that a characteristic?

Your idea of happiness – Rain + tea + great book = Utter contentment

Your idea of misery – Reality TV

Your favorite color and flower – Favorite color is green but bouquets must be white – I adore Hydrangeas, peonies, posies, lilies & tulips

Roses

If not yourself, who would you be? Alan Cumming 🙂

Where would you like to live? Part-time in London or NYC and part-time on a vineyard somewhere in Tuscany

Your favorite prose authors – Alexander Dumas & Patricia Wrede

Your favorite poets – Ovid & Thoreau

Your favorite painters and composers – Titian is without a doubt my favorite painter but I have a soft spot for Monet as well – Due mostly to a book that my Aunt got me as a child. And I’m a classicist when it comes to music so I’d go with Beethoven & Chopin.

Your favorite heroes in real life – Apologies in advance, I’m going to get super cheesy for the next two!

Real Life Hero = my dad. He’s never stopped learning or gathering knowledge, every experience is something to learn from. It’s such a unique way to approach the world & a mindset that I’ve always tried to emulate.

Your favorite heroines in real life – My mom & my aunt. Two strong, determined, smart, successful women who’ve never apologized for going after everything they want in life. They’re a huge part of the reason that I am who I am today!

Your favorite heroes in fiction – Edmond Dantes

Your favorite heroines in fiction – Alice

Your favorite food and drink – Sweet potatoes & raw desserts + red wine or whiskey

Your favorite names – Emmaline, Selene, Lachlan & Christopher {Didn’t even hesitate on this one – I never plan on having children but I collect names for my novels!}

Your pet aversion – Tardiness. You’re telling the person who is waiting for you that your time is more important than theirs.

What characters in history do you most dislike? Nero! {The Roman Emperor – Not Eric Bana in Star Trek}

What is your present state of mind? Contemplative

For what fault have you most toleration? Oversharing

Your favorite motto. “A life without passion is a life not lived.” I will believe this until my dying day.

Passion

So tell me, what are your answers to these questions?


{Giveaway} And The Winner Is…

First, a big thank you to everyone who entered the Sephora Giveaway. I absolutely adore all of my readers and loved this opportunity to give back to the people who have been so generous with their support and kindness. I’ll plan another postapocalyptic giveaway for the beginning of 2013 so that I can treat a few more fabulous readers to some much-deserved goodies.

PrizeI

Now down to the good stuff – Drumroll please – The winner of the Sephora giveaway is… Vanessa Kritlow whose response to my question was:

I’d have to say my  favorite beauty product is a good mascara. I’d never leave the house without at LEAST that on. Gym included. 🙂

Miss Kritlow, please email me your contact information – including your address – and I’ll have your Sephora bag sent out today! I’d also love to hear your thoughts on these products, so feel free to send me your reviews and I’ll be sure to include them in my next beauty products overview.

Have a great Friday everyone and be sure to stay tuned for a fun questionnaire tomorrow!


2012 Highlights & A Little About Moi

In honor of either (1) the impending apocalypse or (2) the end of 2012, I’d like to share some of my favorite posts from the year and a few things that you might not know about me.

In no particular order these are my favorite MCLV posts during 2012:

  • Styling 101: Holiday Dressing – This collaboration has been one of my favorite to date, it was such a fun to brainstorm what we wanted to do, find inspiration, browse for dresses at Mystery Mister, and figure out the styling.
  • MCLV Mange: Farmer’s Market Fare – This post marked the beginning of my MCLV Mange series and I’m really enjoying the chance to share my favorite healthy, easy recipes with you all a few times a month.
  • 10 Day Style Challenge: Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV & Part V – This fashion challenge at the beginning of 2012 was the first time I shared photographs of my personal style on the blog – I’ve come a long way since then and am happy that I now have the opportunity to feature a MCLV Style post once a week!
  • IFBCON – Trends, Styles & Inspirations & MCLV Style: IFBCON Day One – Attending IFBCON {Independent Fashion Bloggers Conference} in New York City this September was one of the highlights of my year. Not only do I adore New York – yes, even during the sweaty Summer – but I was thrilled to meet so many amazing, creative, like-minded women at the conference. I definitely made some cyber-friends for life!
  • MCLV Style: Lady of the Night – This is one of my favorite personal style posts of the year – I’m living for pants this Fall/Winter but somehow I rarely seem to get those looks photographed – I was thrilled how great these shots turned out.

One

Les Confessions – Quartre

Sometimes I wake up and go to the gym, only to look around at the empty room & the dark morning outside and head straight to the shower!

I can’t watch horror movies because I get awful, vivid nightmares. Or read murder mysteries. Or read the newspaper if the topic is serial killers, ritualistic murders, or school shootings. Or read the PETA website.

I love brussels sprouts. I know it’s not cool. I know that it makes me weird. And I’m 100% ok with that.

I’ve started half a dozen novels since I was a teenage and have yet to let anyone read them.

I once had a nightmare about my kitten being sent by the bad guys to watch me and I avoided her for a month.

{Want to know more? Read: Les Confessions – Une, Les Confessions – Deux & Les Confessions – Trois}


Looks of the Week – Winter White

Today’s Looks of the Week round-up will be focusing on the chic Winter trend of wearing white – Whether it’s a head-to-toe look or just a fabulous piece or accessories. Male or female, Summer or Winter, white can be hard to pull off, it takes some serious style chops to make it work well.

WinterWhiteI

{This fashion blogger featured on Candice Lake’s website makes Winer White look effortless – The look is somewhat simple, but oh-so-striking!}

MyMirror

{Very stylish white cable knit sweater and I love how the white is mirrored in the brown & white striped socks. It was a great choice to go with brown instead of basic black & white too.}

CamilleOverTheRainbow

{This is a killer look – A little bit rock n’ roll and a little bit biker chick. I love the white exposed zipper jacket and the buckle ankle boots.}

LovelyByLucy

{This black & white sweater is totally chic and I couldn’t think of a cuter way to pair it than these fabulous leopard print pants – They’re unique, unexpected, and totally fabulous.}

Cupcakes&Cashmere

{This menswear inspired black & white look is fabulous – Chic and timeless with a great androgynous twist.}

SaucyGlossie

{These layered pieces in shades of cream and tan come together into a fabulous look – The leather leggings, chunky sweater, and collared jacket look great together!}

WinterWhite

{This fabulous white coat from last year is one of my favorites – It’s classic but the silhouette gives it a fun twist.}

Sartorialist

{And as always The Sartorialist captures some killer looks from the streets – From chic sweaters to gorgeous maxi skirts to great head-to-toe white looks.}

Have you had time to try out the Winter White trend yet this chilly Winter season? Which of the looks above inspires you the most?


Links You’ll Love

Fashion:

BlondeSalad

Having a fresh perspective on the clothes in your closet and all of the possibilities is a great feeling to have, so why not take some advice from top fashion blogger Chiara Ferragni of the Blonde Salad – Outfit Ecstasy.

Finding great outerwear to keep you warm this Winter can be a challenge – Whether you’re looking for a fabulous blazer, warm overcoat, or stylish peacoat Mr. Brad Goreski has the goods – Menswear: My Winter Coat Guide.

Not sure how to pair your cold-weather pieces in fun, interesting new ways this Winter? Check out Rachel Zoe’s fabulous team and their killer street style for great inspiration – RZNY To The Streets.

Modelinia

Models are known for their ability to mix and match – They have access to great designer gear and new pieces from collections before we can even get our hands on them – So let’s turn to some oh-so-fashionable models for their tips on Winter accessorizing – Chic Accessories to Keep You Warm This Winter.

Putting together a fun, festive, chic look for your next holiday party is a must – Check out WhoWhatWear’s Styling Tips: Holiday Parties for some fun tips & inspiration to help you find the perfect look for you!

Health & Fitness:

Eating a healthy, clean diet is the best way to improve your health, sleep more soundly, and fuel your workouts – Not sure where to start? Check out Eating Well’s Clean Up Your Diet and Lose Weight.

PotatoSalad

Potato salad may seem like a fat-laden Summer treat but Fat Free Vegan has turned a traditional dish into some delicious, healthy, and perfect for this season – Tunisian-Inspired Chickpea and Potato Salad.

Turning off your brain, reducing stress, and relaxing into sleep isn’t always an easy task. If you need some tips & ideas here’s a great place to start – Try These Yoga Poses For a Better Night’s Rest!

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, squeezing in a workout – even a small one – will improve your mood & reduce your stress levels exponentially. Even if you don’t have a lot of time there are options – 15-Minute Mind-Body Workout Circuit.

CoconutThinMintIceCream

I’m a big fan of mint – Everything from candles to candy to desserts – So this next recipe really caught my attention. Then it caught my taste buds. I highly recommend giving this a try if you’re a fan of ice cream or thin mint cookies – Protein Thin Mint Ice Cream.


Sephora Giveaway!

After my recent Beauty Product Lovin’ post it’s clear that there are lots of ladies out there who are in the market for some new products to add to their daily routine and who like to hear “real” feedback before they buy. Since I’d like to help spread knowledge AND products I’m going to give away a Sephora bag PACKED with new makeup & beauty product samples for a lucky reader to try out.

BlondeSalad

From sunscreen to cleanser to foundation to perfume, believe me when I say that this bag has it all! While I wont divulge the contents in advance – a girl need a little mystery after all – I will give you a sneak peek and a few hints about the brands.

SephoraBagI

{Cartier, Sephora, Clarins Paris, Doctor T’s Supergoop, Nars, L’Occitane, Shiseido, Narciso Rodriguez, and Chanel – To name a few…}

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 could have some fun new products to try out in just a few days!

  1. Leave a comment below telling me what your favorite beauty product is OR what’s at the top of your Must Have list right now
  2. Leave a comment on Facebook telling me what your favorite beauty product is OR what’s at the top of your Must Have list right now

You can pick ANY beauty products – whether it’s skin care or makeup – it doesn’t just have to be something you found at Sephora. I will randomly pick a winner next Friday, December 21st & if this turns out to be a well-loved giveaway I’ll do another one in January!

* Please note that the products that I’m giving away are smaller/sample sizes not full-sized and that this giveaway is not sponsored by Sephora – I purchased the products myself


MCLV Style: Pleats & Studs

I had been eyeing this pleated, faux leather, studded skirt for a while – It’s not really my typical style, but I’ve seen a handful of bloggers wearing it and was absolutely in love. So I finally headed to Zara to take the plunge right before my birthday and it was love at first sight!

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{You can shop similar pieces by clicking these hyperlinks: Pleated Leather Skirt – Zara, Striped Pocket Tee – Zara, Crossbody Bag – Le Sak, Ankle BootiesRebecca Minkoff via Shopbop.com & Jewelry – JewelMint, H&M & Asos}

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

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

Once I got this skirt home I had so many ideas running through my head that I couldn’t decide how I wanted to style it. I love both of the looks below – which are quite different style wise – and I wasn’t sure how to make this skirt “me.” I finally settled on pairing it with my favorite suede booties and a basic striped tee which helped dress it down a bit. I’ll definitely be brining it back for another MCLV Style appearance though so stay tuned for a different vibe the next time!

ZaraSkirtCollage

{Inspiration – Late Afternoon & Fashion Vibe}

Do you like Liz from Late Afternoon’s pairing of this skirt with golden booties & bright prints or Zina of Fashion Vibe’s all-black rock n’ roll ensemble best?


Links You’ll Love

Fashion:

Finding a stylish, warm coat for Winter that you can wear in various situations – Everything from over a dress for a night out on the town to picking out a Christmas tree with your family – Can be a challenge. Too thin. Too thick. Too expensive. But Refinery 29 is here to save the day so check out their 10 Casual-Cool Coats To Keep You Warm On The Weekends and find the perfect Winter coat for you.

KarolinaKurkova

The oh-so-stylish Karolina Kurkova has done it yet again – It takes a master to pair plaid, white cropped pants, and flat ankle boots and look this good, so WhoWhatWear helps us out by breaking down her fabulous look so that we can recreate it ourselves in their Why It Works: Karolina Kurkova.

I like to mix up my beauty routine by changing products, trying new brands, and cycling great drug store finds into my morning routine {see MCLV’s Makeup Bag & MCLV’s Medicine Cabinet for more}. Glitter Guide agrees and have laid out all of their favorites for you to try – Our Top 20 Drugstore Beauty Buys.

If you’re like me, wrestling with your locks each morning and trying to find an acceptable arrangement isn’t your favorite thing to do each day. Luckily Style Bistro picked some great hairstyles from the runways and laid out the basic for us hair novices – 15 DIY Hairstyle Ideas Straight From The Runway.

freja

If the studded, spiked & leather adorned world of Lisbeth Salander is your fashion fantasy you must check out Catwalk Azure’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo post for some sartorial inspiration.

Health & Nutrition:

salad with corn, peanuts and thai dressing

After reading Organice Your Life’s Salad Making For Dummies you’ll have no more excuses for not making yourself a quick, healthy, nutritious dinner each night!

Eat protein. Don’t eat protein. It seems like there’s always a new study relating to protein consumption and health or weight loss, but reading up on the topic can help you make healthier choices, just be sure to keep an eye out for future research! Eat THIS, Lose Weight from Women’s Health.

Living a healthy life means more than just keeping an eye on your waistline, especially as you get older, you need to pay attention to the tests that your doctors run – Including your blood pressure. The Huffington Post’s Ways To Lower Blood Pressure: Exercise, Meditation, Diet And More.

With the hectic, non-stop holiday season upon us it’s easier to grab a sugary snack and try to relax on the couch when we have a few extra minutes but trust me, you’ll feel MUCH better if you use those few precious minutes to sneak in a quick workout! Check out Refinery 29’s 10 Minute Workout.

Marilyn Monroe

I’ve had a number of friends over the years who suffered from season depression – A number of whom were Southern California natives who had trouble adapting to the foggy, rainy Bay Areas winters in college. Gala Darling to the rescue! How To Beat The Winter Blues: DENIAL Is Key!


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?


Looks of the Week – Inspiration Edition

Welcome back to another Looks of the Week post – And this week’s post is filled to the brim with fabulous fashion blogger looks. I love discovering great new blogs – via Lookbook.nu, IFB, affiliate links, etc – but I also like checking back in with some of my favorite “established” bloggers and some of the blogs that originally inspired me to start my own.

Wendy

{I’m in fulllll cape mode right now and that’s in part due to this chic, effortlessly stylish look that I fell in love with recently. Wendy Nguyen has the unique ability to make an outfit look fashion-forward but still accessible. Like looking at an advertisement for your favorite store – You love the picture and you know you can put together the look just but running into the store!}

NEW good yellow

{The killer color scheme, the fabulous seventies vibe, the ridiculously chic hat… I just can’t decide what I like best about this look from the always stylish Saucy Glossie.}

Photobucket

{Give me a maxi and I’m a happy girl. Give me an effortlessly style & low-key look that features a maxi and I’m a really really happy girl! Thanks for the Winter inspiration Trop Rouge!}

{A chic day-to-night look that’s super stylish AND features flats is hard to come by. And as always, Cheyenne Meets Chanel makes it look oh-so-easy.}

{I love brocade and I love Peter Pan collars so I was thrilled with this look. I like that Viva Luxury mixed up the traditional black & white look by adding splashes of blue and bright pink.}

{The Glamourai’s Kelly Framel is someone who I always look to for fashion inspiration. Every single look that she puts together makes me sit up and take notice ,and this “basics” look is no different – Chic & stylish with clean lines and a pop of color. Perfection!}

New York City Fashion and Personal Style Blog: Knit beanie, oversized sunglasses, blue suit, mint pumps

{San Francisco to New York City blogger OnTheRacks is a great source of colorful, fun, edgy inspiration – She always mixes pieces in ways I wouldn’t think to, with fabulous results.}

{You can always count on Late Afternoon to put together a look that’s fun and eye-catching while still wearable and wholly “her.” I love love love this vintage gold skirt – The length, the color, the fabric – This is the PERFECT vintage find as far as I’m concerned.}

Chriselle

{Winter whites never looked so good! Leave it to LA-based The Chriselle Factor to put together a fabulous cream-colored look using pieces from different lines.}

GaryPepper

{If you’re ever in the mood for a sweet treat – Along the times of a dreamy, romatic look in a breathtaking setting – Than Gary Pepper is the place to go. Swoon.}

I hope that you get as much inspiration from these talented, creative, brilliant ladies as I do – Enjoy!


Style For Hire Interview

Style For Hire is a country-wide network of style experts co-founded by fashion consultant and What Not To Wear co-host Stacy London. Style For Hire offers styling services – in person and online – from experienced stylists who can answer any and all fashion-related questions to might come up with. From what to wear to a specific event to how to build a better wardrobe to shopping suggestions that will save you money in the future.

I recently had the good fortune to interview a member of the Style For Hire team – Nicole Bush – who shared her background & passion for all things fashion-related with me, as well as helping me answer some of the requests and questions that I regularly get during the Fall.

{Another example of a classic handbag – MICHAEL Michael Kors  Hamilton Artisan Tote}

Nicole’s Background:

[1.] Do you have a fashion background or schooling? Did you work in a similar industry prior to joining Style For Hire?

As far back as I can remember I was playing dress up and dressing my friends. I had worked in retail on and off but it wasn’t until I was personal training in Columbus that I realized this was my passion. After training clients and seeing their transformations (yet still dressing the same) I decided I wanted to help. I enrolled in the Style institute once I moved and the rest is history!

[2.] How long have you been working at Style For Hire? What about the company initially drew you to it?

I have been with Style For Hire for about a year and half. What initially drew me to SFH was Stacy London. I wanted to learn from her! I went into it with that mind set- just learn as much as I can. Once I was accepted, it was then that realized what a gem SFH was!

[3.] What is the best part about working at Style For Hire? What is your favorite thing about this company?

The best part of working for SFH I would have to say are all the amazing stylists! Having done a Westfield Mall Tour I was able to work with such talented women that I would have never had the opportunity to do had I not been apart of the network.
My favorite thing about the company is message that SFH stands for. Stacy truly wants to have every woman feel great! Who wouldn’t want to be apart of that!?

[4.] What’s the best part of your job? What’s the most rewarding experience that you’ve had?

The best part of my job is helping women build confidence! To just look at a woman who sees herself full of flaws, and show her the beauty I see- its an indescribable feeling.  The most rewarding experience is when my client then sees their own beauty…it’s priceless!

[5.] Do you see yourself staying in the fashion industry? Where do you see yourself in five years?

Yes I see myself in the fashion industry. I see myself in 5 years starting a clothing line and styling fashion shows.

{Example of a classic piece that Nicole recommends – Michael Kors Hamilton Large Calf-Hair Tote}

Wardrobe & Closet Updating For Fall 2012:

[1.] My first steps at the beginning of a new season are to clean out my wardrobe, rearrange my pieces, take inventory, and make a list of things I’d like to add for the coming season and then start shopping – online & in stores. How would you approach updating your wardrobe for a new season? What are the steps that you think that one should take?

In order to update your wardrobe one must know what they have. Start by editing your wardrobe. Pull anything you haven’t worn and go through that pile. Ask yourself why you haven’t worn it? Are you missing a piece to complete the look, does it not work for your body type or your personality? DON’T hold onto item you haven’t worn based on an emotional tie. That is the number 1 mistake people make. Instead donate to a friend or a charity. Make room for new pieces and KNOW your body and what works for you.

[2.] When the new collections hit stores it’s easy to get swept away by all of the fabulous clothing and accessories out there and end up with buyer’s remorse. I like to plan my investment purchases for the season in advance, after looking through the collections and seeing what the stores are carrying. What are your suggestions when it comes to buying investment pieces for your wardrobe that you plan to wear/carry season-after-season? What are you top recommendations for designers or stores that frequently carry the types of timeless, classic pieces that fit this bill?

First and foremost you have to LOVE what you buy! Investment pieces are just that- an investment. Think longevity. FIT is key here!

Be familiar with sales. When my Style for Hire clients are about to invest in a key piece I schedule shopping dates at store where my clients will benefit. Be it at Nordstrom on triple point’s day or Bloomingdale’s friends and family. They will get extra points and discounts which is always a bonus.

Designers such as Burberry, Michael Kors, and Ralph Lauren are always great for classic timeless pieces.

{A must have is a divine trench coat – Classic Burburry version pictured here} 

[3.] Having an organized closet is important to me because it means being able to easily access things, it reduces the amount of time spent getting dressed in the morning, and it keeps me from forgetting about pieces that are hidden from sight. What are your recommendations when it comes to closet organization? In your opinion what are the best ways for someone to organize and/or display their clothing and accessories to increase function and convenience?

Your closet is prime real estate, especially living in the bay area where space is hard to come by!  Your closet should be FUNCTIONAL everything in it should fit and should be able to be worn that season. Be sure to rotate your clothes each season. Store any clothes that don’t fit in another closet or a storage bin.

An organized closet can be your best friend! The first thing I do with my clients is organize their closet based on their needs. For instance, I had a client who always wore black and gray and typically pants.  When I rearranged her closet I put all of her black clothes in the back so if she wanted to wear black she had to work for it! Working from left to right, I arranged her closet by putting all of her dresses, and colorful blouses in the center and her gray at the other end. Because of this, she had a whole new wardrobe and we hadn’t even gone shopping yet!

Each season, I suggest you rearrange your wardrobe. If you notice you tend to wear the same go to outfits- mix it up. I like to hang as much as I can. If it’s folded in a draw you tend to forget about it. I use drawers for your everyday pieces- think underpinnings, sports bras, workout clothes, layering tanks etc.

I love to hang accessories so I can see them. Be sure to keep all of your jewelry together in one spot. This is usually the last thing you put on but the most important.

I really love how passionate and enthusiastic she is about fashion – There’s no risk of being told you should only buy designer or throw away all the clothes you’ve ever bought – SFH is only interested in helping build your confidence through looking your best. What’s not to love about that?

Thank you to Style For Hire and to Nicole for their time in setting up this interview – I hope that you all enjoyed this! And I have good news for the holidays – You can order a Style For Hire gift certificate online and give a friend or relative the fashion experience they’ve always wanted.


Holiday Gift Giving Guide

Last year’s Gift Giving Guide separated out the types of individuals we tend to shop for – Host & Hostess gifts as well as presents for the fashionistas, health & fitness nerds, and foodies on your holiday gift list. This season so many of the bloggers that I follow have already put together great lists so I thought it would be fun to collect all of their fabulous suggestions and put together a master list.

Enjoy!

Carolines Mode’s Christmas Gift Ideas is the perfect list for an oh-so-stylish sister or girlfriend and includes notepads, designer lingerie, chic jewelry, and perfume.

Feeling extravagant? Moda Operandi’s Gift Guide: Extravagant Gestures isn’t for the faint of heart – believe me – and includes unbelievable gift ideas like custom designed snowboards, couture dresses, jewelry boxes, and one-of-a-kind homewares.

If you’re not sure what to get that special woman in your life – whether it’s your wife, your sister, or your mother – Harper’s Bazaar is here to help. Their Editors’ Choice: The Best Holiday Gifts is a great collection of ideas including clothing, jewelry, accessories, beauty products, flowers, art, and even chic china patterns!

If you have a friend or family member who is a gym rat or health obsessed than check out FitSugar’s list of Best Fitness Gadgets of 2012 which includes great finds like eco-friendly water bottles, new fitness gear, workout DVDs, and high-tech headphones & monitoring systems.

Could I Have That? has put together a great list and her Holiday Gift Guide: Black & White includes pillows, piggy banks, and fabulous moustache adorned coffee mugs – perfect gifts for one and all.

If edible gifts are more your style be sure to look through the list that Teen Vogue put together – 12 Gourmet Gifts for Foodies – and charm your friends with specialty desserts, quirky cooking tools, and creative cookbooks.

Not sure what to get your host or hostess for an upcoming dinner, holiday party, or weekend away? Check out Moda Operandi’s Be Our Guest for a fabulous collection of gifts that will fit the bill perfectly.

For a well-rounded collection of ideas check out The Subtle Statement’s Holiday Gift Guide – This list includes everything from accessories and electronics to pajamas and serving dishes. You’re sure to find something for that special someone!

And fear not, if you’re on a budget, there are still plenty of choices out there that your friends and family will love. Check 0ut Freckles In April’ Gift Guide: $5 and Under! and Cupcakes & Cashmere’s Holiday Gift Guide – Under $25.

What’s on my holiday wish list? To be honest, I did so much shopping over the past week that I cannot think of a single thing that I actually need let alone want. If you’re curious about what I’ve picked out for myself – See below! 🙂

{Top Left: Betsey Johnson Faux Fur Lined Belted Cape from Macys, Top Right: C-Label Elaine 6 from Piperlime, Bottom Left: Shift Dresses from BCBGeneration & Bottom Right: Boxes coming in from ASOS, Saks, Bloomingdale’s…}

Happy shopping everyone!


MCLV Style: Tiger Tiger Burning Bright

Okay fine, this top is actually adorned with leopard heads not tigers, but once I got that William Blake poem in my head I was determined to use the line as a post title. My deepest apologies for the  fuzzy animal inaccuracy. 🙂

{You can shop similar pieces by clicking these hyperlinks: Leopard Head TopAsos.comSlim Corduroy Pants – Paige Denim via Bloomingdale’s, Tan Peep-Toe Sandals – Madden-Girl via Nordstrom,  Zippered SatchelOASAPLarge Le Pliage Bag – Longchamp via Saks Fifth Avenue, Retro Gold Watch – Vintage, Geometric Gold Bracelet – BCBG Max Azria, Swarovski Crystal Ring – Gift, Spiked Necklace – H&M & SunglassesOscar de la Renta}

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

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

I put this look together for last Saturday’s walk down to SOMA for a photo shoot for an upcoming holiday collaboration with Sasha Maks Vintage and Mystery Mister, and that Longchamp bag I’m carrying was completely filled with shoes, handbags, and other accessories for the shoot. Stay tuned for pictures!

Are you a fan of of the animal print & animal head pieces that are all over the streets and in magazines for the Fall 2012/Winter 2013 seasons?


Looks of the Week

Welcome back to the latest Looks of the Week post – This week I’m featuring some great outfit shots that I found of stylish fashion bloggers, models, and celebrities from all around the world.

I can’t decide what I love most about this shot of Liz from Late Afternoon – The mixing of polka dots & stripes, the killer red booties, or the adorable set up of the photograph itself. Too cute.

A striking metallic belt in a unique corset-like shape like this one is a GREAT way to spice up a classic trench coat. While a trench is always a great choice and immediately gives your look a “put together” air, sometimes taking one to a new level can be fun.

I love maxi dresses and skirts for Fall – So long as it’s not raining you can create a really cute look like this. One part flower child – One part rock n’ roll chick!

Period dressing and really sticking to an era is such a fun way to approach and look. I always truly appreciate the effect when a stylish lady goes to all of that effort and produces a wholly original look like this one – So well done!

I’m totally cape obsessed right now and this look made me gasp! I love the brightly hued dress, the trench-inspired khaki cape, the knee socks, and I especially love the cute vintage style hat. Totally classic and totally fabulous.

Creating a cozy look with layering and knit pieces doesn’t have to leave you looking frumpy – This is a fabulous example of how a chunky sweater or knit cap can look tres chic! I especially love how she paired those killer buckled boots with warm socks.

I love the vintage-meets-modern feel of this look. It’s sweet and romantic but at the same time the boots & button-adorned blazer give it a structured, tailored vibe that’s very in for Fall.

Miss Miranda has been KILLING it lately on the street style front – Every photograph that I’ve seen of her is absolutely stunning, it’s like she has a movie costume designer choosing her outfits every time she steps out of her house. What I especially liked about this look is its simplicity – which makes it easy to emulate – it’s just a sweater dress, a black coat, and a pair of knee-high black boots.

Be sure to stay tuned for a new MCLV Style File post featuring Miranda’s fabulous street style!

Which of these cold weather looks is your favorite? Are you favoring vintage-inspired pieces, classic styles, or one-of-a-kind modern looks right now?


Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving isn’t just about spending time with you family & friends – or food – It’s also a time to be grateful and to give thanks for all of the amazing things in your life.

And I would be remiss if I didn’t say a great big THANK YOU to all of my readers for your continued support – I can honestly say that I wouldn’t be where I am today without each and every one of you.

And as a token of my appreciation here’s a collection of sales and shopping destinations to check out if you’re interested in celebrating Black Friday or Cyber Monday:

What sales am I most looking forward to? I’ve already placed my ASOS order {as I tweeted Wednesday – 20% off w/ the code ASOSxBLAIR} and I’m hoping for some quality time on the Bloomingdale’s & Piperlime sites – Below are some of my picks!
What sites and/or stores are you planning to check out this year for Black Friday or Cyber Monday? Any pieces you’ve been dying to get and are waiting to see if they’ll go on sale?

Voyage To Marrakech

A big Thank You to The Factory and The Evans Group for the unbelievable trip to Marrakech last week – Who knew that in the streets of SOMA you could escape to the market stalls of exotic Morocco?

Voyage To Marrakech is an evening inspired by Yves Saint Laurent’s glamorous 1970’s lifestyle in Moroco to showcase their Spring 2013 Collection. An illuminated nighttime Marrakech marketplace, with cocktails, food, and music, and live photoshoot presentation, featuring live vignettes inspired by iconic YSL iconic photographs.

Stylish San Franciscans flocked to our own personal Marrakech last week to celebrate The Factory’s new collection inspired by the love affaire that YSL had with Marrakech.

{The looks that evening ran the gamut from ultra modern to vintage inspired to came-straight-from-the-office}

{Cocktails, mannequins sporting Yves Saint Laurent-inspired frocks, friends reuniting, fortune tellers…}

{And the models showed off a phenomenal Spring 2013 collection filled with sleek, shimmering fabrics, vintage patterns & prints, luxurious metallics, faux fur, relaxed silhouettes, and fun accessories}

{I wore a long-sleeved, high-neck vintage shift dress, Zara ankle strap heels, and a fabulous gold necklace from Sasha Maks Vintage}

{Check out more photographs from this event here – Just log into Facebook to view}

This was the fifth event that I’ve had the honor of attending at The Factory, check out my posts on the previous events below:


Sasha Maks Vintage – Holiday Trunk Show

Last week I was honored to attend the Sasha Maks Vintage Holiday Trunk Show at the oh-so-stylish Michael Page Style Lab. The night included a gorgeous, tres chic location, stylish men & women, and more amazing vintage jewelry than you could believe.

But since a picture is worth a thousand words, I’ll let the photos speak for themselves…

{The fabulous all-white interior with mirrored walls & dramatic silver light fixtures – Michael Page Style Lab}

{Stylish women in full shopping mode ALL night long}

{Tables & tables of phenomenal vintage jewelry to browse through and try on}

{I wore a pearl-trimmed vintage shift & carried a chainlink quilted handbag, and spent close to two hours that night trying pieces of killer jewelry on}

{Ultimately narrowed it down to these two pieces – And then ended up with the oversized elephant pendant on the right – J’ADORE!}

{Check out more photographs from this event here – Just log into Facebook to view}

If you live or work near the Bay Area and are interested in checking out some amazing vintage jewelry I highly recommend checking out Sasha Maks Vintage – You can even email her and set up a private shopping session! 🙂


Links You’ll Love

Health & Fitness:

Sweet potatoes are a great addition to any healthy diet so you should definitely try out some of these nutritious recipes from Shape Magazine – 10 Healthy Sweet Potato Recipes.

fall detox salad 7422 thumb   Fall Detox Salad + Hurricane Sandy Fundraiser Update

OhSheGlow’s Fall Detox Salad is a must try – Filled with Brussels Sprouts, carrots, apple, celery, sunflower seeds, and raisins, it’s as nutritious as it is delicious {also check out this salad as part of the Thanksgiving Recipe Round-Up}.

Eating well and living a healthy life doesn’t have to mean giving up all sweets and desserts, you just need to make healthier, smarter choices when you want to indulge – Try FitFluential’s Five Healthier Desserts which include amazing choices like Raspberry Chocolate Chips, Dark Chocolate Nut Butter Pretzels, Fruit & Yogurt Parfaits, Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes/Muffins, and Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries.

Do you want model-worthy skin? Refinery 29 has the goods – The Surprising Secret To Model-Worthy Skin.

IMG_3176

Finding a great, healthy snack that you love and that’s easy to make is wonderful – One of my favorites recently is Choosing Raw’s Cinnamon Caramelized Cauliflower.

Fashion:

Interested in spicing up your daily makeup routine? It’s always fun to see what other beauty products are out there and the sort of routines that women go through on a daily basis, so let’s check out how blogger Trop Rouge has set up her makeup routine – Makeup Monday.

Top 9 at 9: A Model’s Must Haves with Lonneke Engel gives you all of model Lonneke Engel’s Fall 2012 picks – From workout gear to sweaters to what her favorite shoes are for Fall.

Ulyana Sergeenko’s dramatic, eye-catching clothes are the perfect pieces for this dreamy Moscow-based photo shoot in the most recent Carine Roitfeld Fashion Book issue – Moscow Walk.

Oxblood is everywhere for Fall 2012 and if you’re not sure whether it’s the trend for you, trying beauty products and nail polish are great choices – 3 Chic Ways To Do Burgundy Beauty.

The Fall 2012 Collection for J.Crew is pretty phenomenal – It’s filled with great outerwear, fun, printed pants, and killer accessories. And none of those accessories are better than the Lulu Frost’s Capsule Collection – Shop It Now: Lulu Frost For J.Crew Holiday.


Website Review – FootCandy Shoes

Due to long hours, lots of time spent in front of a computer on a daily basis, and a general dislike of crowded stores – I’ve become quite the connoisseur of the “art” of online shopping. Recently I was thinking about what I like, what I don’t like, which sites I frequent, and what qualities I look for when I’m shopping online and wanted to share some of the wisdom I’ve accumulated over the years.

What makes a good online retailer?

  1. Great selection of pieces so I’ll always find something that I like
  2. Carries brands that I know & love (and which I already know my size in…)
  3. Acceptable pricing & great and/or frequent sales
  4. Shipments arrive in good time
  5. Quick, easy & hassle-free returns

My favorite places to shop online?

  1. ASOS
  2. Bloomingdale’s
  3. Piperlime
  4. BCBG
  5. Nordstrom

And I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Shopstyle.com – Even though you don’t order directly from the website itself, this is the best place to find something that you’re looking for since they’ll search ALL online retailers for you. Ridiculously helpful.

Now that we’ve talked about online shopping in general, let’s discuss shoe shopping. As I’m sure you’ve picked up, I like shoes {Real Girls Need Real Closets & Real Girls Need Real Closets – Accessories Edition} so today I want to share a new website that I recently discovered called FootCandy Shoes – An independent, high-end retailer that has put together a great website that carries a pretty spectacular selection of shoes.

Pros:

  • Free shipping on orders over $100
  • Great sale section & “Bargain Basement” tabs with shoes under $50, $100, $150…
  • Carries designer shoes as well as the more common, less expensive brands
  • They also carry handbags and other small accessories

Cons:

  • There are some PRICEY pieces on this site so be prepared

And the most fun part of reviewing a shoe site, here are my loves, must haves, and recommendations for Fall!

{Left to Right: Kate Spade Bison Booties – $120, Moschino White & Black Pumps – $150, Pollini Striped Oxfords – $190 & Tory Burch Buckled Ankle Boots – $215}

And as an added bonus FootCandy Shoes would like to share a couple great shoe-related articles with us – Since they know how much we all love our shoes!

{The following was written by Foot Candy Shoes for MCLV}

Top 4 Ways to spot a fake Christian Louboutin Shoe

Today, it seems as though there are many individuals that are trying to mimic the iconic designer shoes of Christian Louboutin. With his eye for incredible design, texture, fabric, and of course his infamous red sole, who wouldn’t want to be the next Christian Louboutin? Well… there is a difference between inspiration and plagiarism. He is a mogul that he himself created. Since day one he has put everything he had into his shoes. From dreams to scribbles, Louboutin is a trendsetter that no other person other than the glorious man himself can replicate. He truly is a one of a kind designer and this is clearly why every fashionista across the globe is obsessed with his label. Unfortunately, there are many people out there that want a piece of his opulence and they themselves have started to counterfeit his designs.

Here are four tips that will help every fashionista out there distinguish between Authentic Christian Louboutin’s and Imitations:

1. The Box: Some may find this tip silly but its close attention to detail that will differentiate genuine Louboutin’s from the fake ones. When looking closely at the box it is important to note the word “Paris.” It should be located near the edge of right side of the box. It should not be underneath the Christian Louboutin logo. In addition, the item description sticker should be on the box. It should clearly state the European size, name of the shoe, and have a sku bar and number all located on this one sticker. Lastly, the Christian Louboutin logo should be written in white lettering.

2. The Dust Bags: An authentic dust bag should be a bright red color made of a cotton fabric with the Christian Louboutin logo noticeably written straight across the bag. Fake dust bags tend to look almost sun faded or pink in tone. In addition, the fake dust bags have the Christian Louboutin logo that is written diagonally. Lastly, the fake dust bags usually are made of a fake silky material.

3. The Red Sole: A genuine Christian Louboutin red sole is always a bright red hue with a high gloss finish. Fake red soles are a deeper red hue and tend to have a matte looking finish rather than glossy one. Pay close attention to the lettering inscribed on the red sole. An authentic Christian Louboutin will clearly have “Christian Louboutin,” “Made in Italy,” and the European size located on it. Many times the fake shoes will have the word “MadeInItaly” as one word with no spaces. Lastly, the loop on the “L” located on an authentic Christian Louboutin shoe will appear almost touching the rest of the “L.” In the replica the “L” will not touch and there is a notable space in-between.

 4. The Authenticity Card: An enormous clue that will distinguish if the shoe you are purchasing is genuine or not has to do with the authenticity card. Fake shoes will come with a red PLASTIC authenticity card. However, genuine Christian Louboutin shoes do not send out any booklets or authenticity cards!

We hope these tips help! Happy Christian Louboutin Hunting!!

This article was written by Foot Candy Shoes, online retailers for Christian Louboutin, Jimmy Choo, Manolo Blahnik and more.


MCLV Style: Prim & Proper

Working in the corporate world means that my office style tends towards classic and traditional – I keep my arms covered and wear knee-length skirts or dresses 4 – 5 days a week. But just because my style is fairly formal doesn’t mean I can’t have fun with work fashion!

{You can shop similar pieces by clicking these hyperlinks: Embellished Empire-Waist Dress – Donna Ricco from Nordstrom, T-Strap Heels – Zara, Top-Handle Handbag – Zara, Black Leather Bow HeadbandBanana Republic, Geometric Gold Bracelet – BCBG, Gold Wrap Ring – JewelMint & Black Bow Ring – Forever 21}

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

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

What drew me to this was the embellished empire waist, it gave the retro-silhouetted dress a little something extra. And because the waist is already so dramatic I usually skip the necklaces with this dress and just pile on bracelets and rings. Or in this case, a black faux leather bow headband – J’adore! ❤

What’s the dress code in your office? Do you usually dress formally, informally, or business casual like me? Do you have a work “uniform” that you usually wear?


Looks of the Week – Menswear Edition

Most of the fashion that I feature on this site is geared towards women, but I have to confess that I do in fact love mens fashion and follow a number of male fashion bloggers. So today I thought we could celebrate some of the oh-so-stylish gentlemen out there. We all have men in our lives – whether it’s a significant other, brother, father, son – who we can use this as inspiration to shop for!

I’m not going to lie, I have a bit of a fashion crush on this blogger {he was featured in this Looks of the Week post & Let’s Hear It For The Boys}. Not only does he have a great sense of style, he’s pretty darn funny in the comments section of his Tumblr account – which is, by the way, named after his hair – Edward’s Hair.

What caught my eye here were all of the great neutral colored layers – Not only is that a killer shearling coat, he’s also wearing a button-down shirt and a sweater vest paired with a great printed scarf. If you’re interested in learning how to stylishly apply layers, My Mirror is a site that you should definitely check out.

This Italian blogger is a PhD-level accessorizer – This is such a fabulous combination of pieces, it almost looks like an advertisement for a luxury brand! Retro sunglasses, an orange cashmere tie, Belfiore shoes, Louis Vuitton briefcase, and a killer vintage coat – Utter perfection.

What I love about this is the combination of colors, textures, and prints. The blue & white Gingham button-down shirt paired with the army green suit jacket is great, but I love how he took it a step further and paired those pieces with the brown slacks.

Just because it’s cold out doesn’t mean that your personal style needs to go out the window while you pile on layer after layer. Here’s a chic example of how to casually layer and add cold weather pieces to a look without sacrificing fashion.

Suits don’t have to be boring or traditional to get the job done. Try a flattering color or an interesting cut or fun patterns & prints. Or try all three!

Finally, I would be remiss if I failed to mention my favorite male fashion blogger in this post, even though he doesn’t regularly post photographs of his own personal style, UK-based Stu Bradley of Not So Lonely Londoners {you may know him from his sensational How To Pose Like A Fashion Blogger post that swept the internet last Spring}.

Which of these menswear looks above is your favorite? And what is it about that particular look that caught your attention?