Banana Republic

The Perfect Winter White Cardigan

A89V2280A89V2307A89V2302A89V2289A89V2295A89V2279

This oversized, winter white cardigan is the perfect addition for any wardrobe. It has a casual, bulky feel but the color, yarn-like texture and cool pockets make it look way more fashion-forward.

This has been my go to for so many occasions! It can be paired with absolutely everything from boyfriend jeans and a colorful scarf to a sexy dress.

Living in the Midwest, it is harder to sport dresses or skin-baring apparel during winter months.  I just want to wear a parka and not take it off for four months. The hubby would NOT appreciate that.

So… for a night on the town, I think it okay to show some skin. I actually wore the above outfit to a New Year’s Eve cocktail party.

My advice!? Keep it seasonally appropriate with winter-inspired layering pieces that add warmth and the textures that remind you of the season – fur, leather, suede, wool, etc. Booties (extra points for OTK styles) or close-toed options are the best way to go!

Without the sweater, this dress would leave me feeling way too exposed. As spring approaches, I’ll wear the dress like a top over leather leggings and pair with fun cage heels. A denim jacket thrown over the top will keep it fun and laid back.

Dress: Spotlight Dress from STYLESTALKER (Purchased at Aimee Boutique)
Cardigan: J.O.A.  On Sale Now! (Purchased at Aimee Boutique)
Shoes: Banana Republic
Bag: Rebecca Minkoff
Sunglasses: Quay Australia (Purchased at Aimee Boutique)

Note: Aimee Boutique will ship any items if you don’t live local.  Just follow their Instagram account for new styles arriving weekly. ; )

All photos by Andrea Altman Photograhy

Your Guide to NYE Party Looks

We’re only a few days out from the big night. What will you be wearing?

Whether you head to the fanciest steak joint with your loved one, gather with old friends for food and laughter or paint the town red with your girls, this is the perfect night to show a bit more skin or wear something flashier. Think silk, sequins, leather and lace! Below are a few styles that work great for ringing in the New Year.

1) Sport a cape top with silky shorts and suede heels. The blouse provides a little more breathing room for a night of overindulgence and the sleeves add proportion to bare legs in winter months.

A89V2049A89V2027

Shirt: Olivaceous (purchased at Aimee boutique). Similar dress in black – ON SALE.
Shorts: BCBGeneration (No longer available). Similar here – ON SALE.
Shoes: B Brian Atwood (No longer available).  Try this great, affordable style.

2) Try a flirty romper with a feminine bag and strappy heels.  I love that this romper covers a bit more skin than most on the market. Again, play off proportions and show some leg but keep arms and chest covered. Or vice versa. You could also do a longer pant jumpsuit with a strapless top!  The open back and flouncy short bottom on this one offers subtle sex appeal without going over-the-top. See links below for a variety of jumpsuit/romper options.

AB0A4201AB0A4210AB0A4229

Romper: The Fifth Label (purchased at Aimee boutique). Similar here. See other styles here.
Bag: Rebecca Minkoff
Shoes: Stuart Weitzman

Shades: Quay Australia (purchased at Aimee boutique)

3) Wear Sequins.  Hanging with friends at home? Dress the jacket down with flare jeans, pumps and a fun graphic tee. Or dress it up with a silk cami and black pants for a night on the town.

A89V1879A89V1881

Sequin Jacket: MinkPink (purchased at Aimee boutique).
Pants: Rag & Bone. Similar here.
Shoes: Stuart Weitzman
Clutch: Marc by Marc Jacobs (No longer available). Similar here.

4) You can NEVER go wrong with a LBD.  This one by Amanda Uprichard comes in a faded black and features a beautiful high neckline which is very of-the-moment. I’ll keep it simple and pair with fun earrings or a gold cuff and black heels for a “classic, can’t fail”  look. Top with a leather jacket for extra oomph and added warmth when bar hopping.

A89V2214A89V2222
A89V2253A89V2250

Dress: Amanda Uprichard (purchased at Aimee boutique). See other Amanda Uprichard styles here.
Shoes: Stuart Weitzman

Moto Jacket: Banana Republic

Holiday Ready: Go Casual

A89V1807A89V1810A89V1791A89V1798

Christmas is just under a week away and the related events seem like a daily occurrence. From a get together with family and friends, to the annual work function or even the hottest cocktail party of the year, I have an outfit for every occasion – including holiday attire. This  week, I’ll share some of my favorite styles as well as a few options to consider for New Year’s Eve.

Look one is my go-to for all things casual. 

Major retail brands showcase sequins, furs and cashmere as if everywhere I go will be a fancy black tie gala. Umm, wrong.

In reality, I’m two doors down hanging with neighbor friends, our kids are running wild in the basement and I’ve inhaled half a cheese ball with my glass of wine. If not there, you’ll find me watching State belt out Jingle Bells at his preschool program or opening presents and enjoying brunch with family.

For all of these times, I want to look cute but not overdressed.

This top by Wildfox Couture worn with a pair of on-trend flare jeans and simple black pumps works for all occasions!

This brand has the CUTEST casual gear and festive options for major holidays like Valentine’s Day and Halloween. I adore cozy and quirky apparel that is fashionable AND machine washable. As a mom of two young kiddos with sticky fingers, I very much appreciate that.

Style tips: To mix it up, I also pair this top with black skinnies and suede ankle booties or lighter denim skinnies and Converse sneakers. Going for the snowman over a Christmas tree or reindeer option, I can wear this top all winter!

Shirt: Wildfox Couture (purchased mine at Aimee boutique)
Jeans: Velvet (purchased at Aimee boutique). Similar here.
Shoes: Banana Republic
Bag:  Rebecca Minkoff Mini Julian Backpack (Here in Red)

 

Fall Wardrobe Roundup

Wow. Where has the time gone?

I’ve not shared several looks I’ve been wearing over the past month or so. Rather than post like a mad woman, I thought I’d share many of the styles in one roundup and a few ways I’ll continue to wear these pieces into winter.

All photos by Andrea Altman Photography

Go Weekend Casual
I LOVE this effortlessly sexy top. The colors and pattern make it very versatile and the open back shows just enough skin to make it fun for an afternoon date with the hubby. Here I wore with black jeans and brown suede booties but this top would look great with flare jeans and circular sunnies or with white jeans/cut offs and leather sandals in summer months.

Shirt: Some Days Lovin  Purchased at Aimee boutique.
Jeans: J Brand
Booties: Rag & Bone (No longer available). Similar here.

AB0A4400AB0A4390AB0A4377AB0A4408

Play Off Proportions
Play off proportions with an oversized sweater (BCBG), lace-up black pants (Rag & Bone) and chic booties (Alexander Wang). The look is sexy enough for dinner or a night out with friends, but still says colder weather cozy.

Note: All items purchased last year but try these options!
Sleeveless Turtleneck Sweater
Fun Leggings
Black Booties

A89V5401A89V5379A89V5371A89V5377

Wear a Crewneck Sweater Multiple Ways
Wide leg jeans and caramel booties. Gauchos and block heels. Denim skirt and D’Orsay pumps. This Banana Republic sweater looks great with just about anything. In colder months, swap these items for skinny jeans and taupe calf-hair booties or dark flare jeans and suede pumps. Drape a blanket scarf over your shoulders and cinch your waist with a belt. With this bold orange sweater, I’d pair with a fun plaid for extra style points! Try this one, here.

AB0A4087AB0A4094AB0A4058

Pair Masculine and Feminine Items
You’ve probably noticed by now that I almost always juxtapose more feminine pieces with something a bit masculine. This black A.L.C. hooded, sleeveless sweater was heavy enough to provided added warmth on cooler mornings and added a little edge to a fluted, print skirt.

Maximize your investment this winter by pairing a skirt with thick black tights, chunky oxfords and a cashmere sweater. Or keep it flirty and tights free with over-the-knee boots! Like the top? Wear with an oversized blazer or cocoon coat and slim boyfriend jeans. Ballet flats and a feminine, crossbody bag will provide the perfect balance.

Sweater: Intermix (No longer available).
Skirt:
Banana Republic

AB0A4162AB0A4144

Consider Color-blocking
Amp up simple black skinnies with a cozy sweater with a fun pattern and booties.

Jeans: J Brand
Sweater: Sonia Rykiel (No longer available). Try this one.
Booties: Rag & Bone

AB0A4434AB0A4427

Menswear Street Style
A silk white blouse and black pants are street chic with oversized shades, suede pumps and a fedora.

Shoes: Banana Republic
Sunglasses: 3.1 Phillip Lim Thick Frame Sunglasses.
Hat: Scoop NYC

A89V5338A89V5351A89V5345

 

Rock a Graphic Tee
Graphic tees are so fun and easy to throw on with  denim. Wildfox and ElevenParis are some of my favorite brands but I love this piston rose tee from friend and hot rod builder Bodie Stroud of B.S. Industries.

His shop has completed more than 30 custom hot rods — some for celebrities including Tim Allen and Johnny Depp. You may also recognize Bodie from the hit show Monster Garage where he starred with builder Jesse James. Check out his line of apparel here!

AB0A4438AB0A4442

Paisley with a Pop of Color
I wore this feminine blouse with cropped, patio pants to my daughter’s baptism earlier this fall. The cage like sandals and waistcoat add a little edge and make the look more fashion forward.

Shirt: Intermix (No longer available). Jumpsuit in same pattern here.
Pants: J. Crew Note: Try in wool options for winter!
Shoes: Donald Pliner (No longer available). Similar here.
Coat: Zara
Clutch: BCBGeneration (No longer available).

AB0A4331AB0A4306

Dress Up Boyfriend Jeans
Dress up boyfriend jeans with red suede pumps and a boyfriend blazer or throw on leopard loafers and a black blouse for some casual but sexy va va voom. Keep it office appropriate with a cami underneath and non-distressed styles.

Blazer: Banana Republic (No longer available)
Jeans: Rag & Bone (No longer available). Great affordable option here. Less distressed option here.
Loafers: Jimmy Choo (No longer available). Similar here. And here.
Blouse: BCBG (No longer available). Similar here.
Pumps: Chinese Laundry

AB0A4273AB0A4252AB0A4243

AB0A4285

Get Out of that Wardrobe Rut

AB0A4459A89V5436Ruflfle Dress Multiple Ways

AB0A4472

 

Ever get stuck in a wardrobe rut and feel like you’re wearing the same exact pieces the very same ways? I have been guilty of this but wanted to challenge myself – and my readers – to find a piece of clothing and make it work at least three different ways in the coming month.

This ruffle dress (which I’ve featured before) is very versatile. In this post, I’ve tried to showcase a few different styles and offered additional thoughts on how you can pull different pieces together from your wardrobe to create some super fun looks. Here I played off some of the same accessories  – my shoes and bag – but you don’t have to.

Look at the list below for some outfit inspiration and then try it out at home. Please share your pics and ideas on the Facebook page. I look forward to seeing what you put together.

  • A Day at the Office: Pair with feminine heels, oversized shades, a boyfriend blazer and ladylike crossbody.
  • Quirky and Fun: Mix prints and go unexpected with a camo jacket and pumps. Suede booties would look great, too! Style points for pairing blush and shades of green together.
  • Make it a Skirt: By pairing with feminine heels and topping with a black cashmere sweater, you create another look that is fantastic for the office. Consider a leather oversized clutch vs the crossbody.
  • Warm Weather Day:  Wear the dress alone and throw on strappy nude sandals. I love the idea of pairing it with an oversized tote for an afternoon of shopping or running errands with the kids.  Cooler nights? Layer a fitted denim jacket on top and reach for a casual tote (style not shown).
  • Make it a Tunic: Layer a trench dress (like the green one I’ve featured in a previous post) over the pink. Put on skinny jeans, booties and fun accessories like an arm full of leather wrap bracelets or gold bangles (style not shown).

 

Elevated Grunge

Elevated Grunge Elevated Grunge Elevated Grunge

 

This outfit is a little grunge, very comfy and elevated just a tad with heels, satchel and black-framed aviator sunglasses.

Want to go all in? Tie a flannel around your waist while still wearing the jacket. Pair with shredded or black denim and combat boots.

I wore this with black leather sandals to lunch/farmer’s market with friends and then put on heels for drinks with the hubby later that afternoon.

Jacket: Banana Republic
Sleeveless Hooded Sweater: A.L.C. (No longer available). Purchased at IntermixOnline

Boyfriend Shorts: Current/Elliott
Shoes: The Nudist Sandal by Stuart Weitzman
Sunglasses: Quay Australia Find this style and others at Aimee boutique
Bag: See by Chloe Satchel (No longer available). Similar option here.