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Fashion, Shop

6 ways with a cardigan

13th July, 2019

cardigans

Gone are the days when the humble cardigan would be something your grandparents would wear. The cardi has become an integral part of most winter wardrobes and with good reason – they’re warm, comfy and just so versatile. And to prove it here are six ways to work the cardigan into your wardrobe…

Pinterest

A black cardi when teamed with an all-black ensemble makes for an interesting alternative to a black blazer or jacket. This is the kind of piece that you’ll turn to time and time again because it’s so multi-functional and will work back with virtually everything in your wardrobe.

lauren messiah

A grey cardi will never go astray in your wardrobe. When worn with jeans and a tee it’s a match made in heaven and makes for a low-key yet chic ensemble for a casual lunch, a day of running errands or while travelling.

new fashion craze

Whoever said cardis were boring has never seen the amazing array of bold patterns they can come in. Have fun with your cardis and experiment with an interesting print or pattern. When worn with pared back pieces such as a tee and skinny jeans it makes for a great statement piece to give your outfit a point of difference. To ensure it doesn’t become too much for your outfit, try to pick one colour in your cardi and choose pieces in the same colour to give the look some cohesion.

allamoda

For a casual cool vibe replace your jacket or blazer with a cosy cardi. If teaming a cardi with a dress try to keep the silhouette quite streamlined and opt for a form fitting dress to counteract the volume of the cardi. You can dress up this look with a pair of pumps or keep it quite casual with brogues or oxfords.

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Unexpected pairings are often the best. In this case a pinstripe button down shirt makes an interesting juxtaposition with the relaxed nature of the cardi. An oversized cardi (much like a coat of the same cut) will always be a welcome winter warmer as it’s simply so easy to thrown on over virtually anything and it ups the cosy factor when you’re facing a chilly day outdoors.

sincerely jules

To give a cardi a slightly more polished feel try belting it to make it a little more figure-hugging. This has the added benefit of giving you some shape and when teamed with skinny jeans it makes for a sleek finish.

Photography: Stockholm Street Style, Shot by Gio, Lauren Messiah, New Fashion Craze, Sincerely Jules,

Fashion

Planning a European summer holiday? Here’s your bikini buying guide

6th July, 2019

mikoh

Oleema and Kalana Miller are the sister duo behind swimwear label Mikoh. Their swimwear is fashion forward with an emphasis on striking colours, cut out detail and plenty of separates that can be mixed and matched (which as most women will know, is key to getting a perfect fitting bikini). Here Oleema and Kalani share their best tips for buying a perfect bikini, the trends to watch out for and how to find the perfect fitting pair of swimmers online (yes, it’s totally possible)…

What are some of the trends people should look out for?

It’s slowly starting to trickle into the Australian market but it’s been very popular especially among all the emerging swimwear brands to have a skimpier cut when it comes to bottoms. Beyond that there’s two opposite ends of the spectrum when it comes to colour and print. Nude colours are really popular and in our range we try to have a really good range of colours so we have something for everybody so there’s lots of muted earth tone colours as well as big bright statement colours like a fluorescent pink or a bright yellow.

One of the biggest things is that swimwear itself has become a trend. A few years ago it was just something that you bought once or twice a year to go to the beach but we are finding more and more so that it has become somewhat of a trend to buy swimwear and wear them as undergarments to replace your bra. It’s good to have one piece that serves two different purposes.

What are some of your tips for buying flattering swimwear?

When you’re trying on swimwear in the store certain lighting can be very unflattering and sometimes it’s not realistic of what it would be outside if you were actually wearing the bikini. So the more you try on the better. Whenever we’re doing trunk shoes or events we always encourage people to try on a bunch of different sizes and different shapes because girls will be drawn to the one staple like a little black bikini but it’s important to broaden your horizons and try things on. Especially if you’re in a store where you can try more than one thing.

What about shopping online?

A lot of sites do it nowadays but they say the model is wearing a suit with certain measurements and what size she’s wearing so it’s important to do a lot of cross reference when you’re buying something and it’s even important to check out different websites as well. If you’re after a certain style or piece, it’s good to look on alternative sites that carry it to help you understand how that top or bottom fits. It’s just doing your research because a lot of the time swimwear is final sale so you don’t want to get stuck with it if it’s not quite right.

mikoh-2

What are the essentials of a great swimwear wardrobe?

The little black bikini. Just something that’s super minimalist and black obviously translates from season to season. Even if the style is more trendy, anything in black is able to be timeless.

The complete opposite of that is a statement piece. So a swimsuit with a really beautiful print or bright pop of colour or interesting body shape.

A good one piece is really classic as well. We have a ton of girlfriends that wear them as bodysuits as well and it translates into ready to wear and is not just swimsuit specific.

And lastly a suit in a sporty or athletic shape. In one trip we’ll go surfing or go swim at the beach, we’ll lay out and snorkel so it’s good to have something that can be more sporty related but you can also wear it later to yoga or to work out in.

What are your tips for looking after swimwear?

Treat your swimwear the way you would treat your really good lingerie. A lot of girls are like ‘oh I wore this it’s kind of dirty I’m just going to throw it in the washing machine’, we highly advise against doing that just because it is such a delicate material. A lot of suits like ours are handmade, if you’re not gentle with them it will get ruined if you’re too harsh with it. We always say to wash it with a little bit of soap in cold water, especially after wearing it at the beach or in chlorine. Anytime you get chlorine on something it will disintegrate the material so it’s important to give it a good wash after wearing it then lay it out flat to dry outside in the shade. You want to avoid using any harsh chemicals or detergents and washing machines. And definitely avoid the dryer!

What’s your current fave bikini in your collection?

One of the pieces we find most beautiful and unique in our collection is the Waimea top and the Cayman bottom. They’re hand macramed and it almost captures all those different kinds of essential suits we were describing before. It comes in a range of colours but if you were to get them in black it definitely ticks the little black bikini box, you can also wear it doing sporty things and it makes a statement.

waimea-set

The Waimea top and Cayman bottom

Fashion

Treating yourself with your tax refund? Here’s how to choose a worthwhile splurge item

29th June, 2019
Kate Waterhouse Chanel at Marais boutique launch Melbourne balmain blazer chanel bag bec and bridge dress 2

Kate Waterhouse Chanel at Marais boutique launch Melbourne balmain blazer chanel bag bec and bridge dress 2

It’s end of financial year time and if you’re lucky enough to be expecting a tax refund you may be in the mood to treat yourself. If you’re on the hunt for something to splurge on then there’s no better time to consider purchasing an investment piece to add to your wardrobe. These are often my favourite purchases to make as not only are they special, they’re also usually guaranteed to get plenty of use and have longevity so I feel I’m getting my money’s worth. If you’ve been lusting after something for a long time then perhaps now is the time to take the plunge, but keep these things in mind first…

Choose something that will get plenty of use

This is a given if you’re planning to buy something that’s on the expensive side so take stock of your wardrobe and see what you actually need. For example if you’re after a pair of good quality flats then now might be the time to splurge on a pair of Gucci loafers or Chanel ballet flats. They’re classic designs that will always be in style and crafted beautifully so you’ll definitely have them for a long time. If you think about the cost per wear you’ll probably find that they work out to be cheaper than a pair of shoes that you’ll only wear for one season.

Avoid anything that will date

For me, things that are worth splurging on are handbags, shoes, jackets, blazers and coats as I find they’re usually the workhorses of my wardrobe. It’s important to think classic when it comes to these pieces as you don’t want them to date too quickly.

If you’re thinking about buying a designer bag (or any other pricey item) then be sure to choose a style that’s not identifiable with a particular season–avoid the signature piece of a collection as it’s one sure fire way to have something that won’t be able to work in the long term. Also steer clear of anything that is only going to be around for one season as it won’t age well. A great example of a bag that will work years from now is the quilted Chanel bag which is so versatile (I’ve had mine for ages and I use it so much) and also has been around for decades and is a staple of the brand’s accessories line. Apparently it also appreciates in value so it definitely lives up to being called an investment piece!

A quality bag is a definite splurge buy that’s worth considering

Shop around

Splurging can mean buying something nice but it can also mean buying something extra nice that’s on sale. If you’re planning on buying an investment piece then definitely shop around for the best deal you can get. You’ll still end up with a great piece but at a fraction of the price My Balmain blazer (pictured above) is one such item. I had my eye on one for awhile but I waited until I found it on sale on Net-a-Porter for half the price. It was worth every cent but I was even happier that I managed to save on the cost of it. Shop smart and you’ll definitely get more bang for your fashion buck.

Do you really love it?

It’s easy to get caught up in buying something simply because it’s on sale or you’re just in the mood to spend. However you’re better off holding back and splurging on something that you adore and will wear for many years to come. To ensure that you’re making a worthwhile buy employ the 24 hour test. If you’ve seen something online or spotted something in store don’t buy it immediately. Instead give yourself a day (or even longer if you can stand it) and if you’re still thinking about it then it’s meant to be. It’s an effective way (and one I’ve tried and tested) to ensure that you’re not going to have buyer’s remorse.

What investment piece do you have your eye on at the moment?

 

 

 

Beauty, Fashion

Super quick styling tips to help you out of a fashion rut

15th June, 2019

There’s nothing worse than being faced with a wardrobe full of clothes and feeling like you have absolutely nothing to wear. The answer isn’t jumping online and ordering a new outfit to arrive by lunchtime (although that can sometimes be fun) it’s about learning to accessorise or rework items in your wardrobe to give them a fresh new feel. And as I’m sure you’re a busy woman who needs to get out the door fast, here are some of my super quick styling tips to help you pull together a “new” outfit quicker than you can click add to cart. Your bank balance will certainly breathe a sigh of relief!

Choose a bold accessory

If my outfit is feeling a bit flat I find a great way to inject a bit more energy into it is by adding a bold accessory. For example I’ve often paired my Gucci Dionysus bag (above) with an otherwise subdued outfit and found it instantly made it feel modern and on-trend. You don’t always have to opt for a bag, you could also try a pair of eye-catching drop earrings or a layering a few necklaces (all faves of mine) to breathe some new like into an outfit you’ve worn time and again.

Roll it, tie it or cuff it

You can totally rejig an existing outfit with a few simple styling tweaks. For a tired pair of jeans try cuffing the bottom and pairing with a pair of bold flats or heels for a look that feels instantly fresher. You could try tying a button down shirt and pairing it with everything from a pair of shorts and skirt for an outfit that takes a classic look and makes it feel a little more undone. Or experiment with rolling your sleeves whether it be on a shirt, a dress or even a jacket to create an entirely new silhouette.

Add a touch of colour

Having fun with colour is one way to make an outfit feel new again. The best bit about this is that you can do it in so many different ways. You could work it into an outfit in a small way such as a pair of shoes in a standout shade. You could go all out and layer multiple hues of the same colour family like this, or choose one ultra bright colour to take centre stage such as the above look and keep the rest of your outfit a little more subdued to really let it pop.

Enlist the help of a scarf

I wrote about how scarves have become a favourite accessory of everyone from celebs to fashion and beauty bloggers late as they’re so versatile. You can fashion it into a headband, tie it around your neck or use it as a hair tie. Find one scarf in a vintage print and you’ll be able to revive many tired looks with it. Alternatively it also serves the extremely handy purpose of hiding dirty hair in a stylish way when you really can’t be bothered to wash it!

Polish your digits

It requires a bit more effort but painting your nails in a really bright colour can often make any outfit feel new. It also has the added benefit of giving you a more polished look overall. Give yourself a mani at the beginning of the week and watch it elevate your outfits for the next few days without you having to do anything at all.

Try a belt

You’ll be surprised at the sartorial power of a belt when it comes to reworking an existing look. An easy one is wearing a belt with an oversized buckle with jeans or a denim skirt for a look that plays into the current 90s trend. You could also try Olivia Palermo’s favourite styling trick of belting a jacket such as a blazer or coat.

What are some of your styling hacks for getting out of a wardrobe rut?

Fashion, Shop

How to make fashion purchases you’ll always love

8th June, 2019

When it comes to shopping it’s easy to get caught up in the process and end up with something that you may only be interested in for a short period of time. It’s these purchases that often end up gathering dust in your wardrobe and ultimately wind up on a ‘to throw away’ pile in the not too distant future. These purchases often add up and once you’ve done a final tally you’ll often realise (much to your dismay) that you could have bought a big ticket item that you truly love.

So how can you go about making sure you end up buying things that you won’t fall out of love with in a week? Here are some key things to keep in mind:

Do some research

Shop around and check out what’s available out there. Whether it’s shoes or a dress you might find that you had one particular style in mind but once you’ve looked further you may find another style that you love even more.

Give yourself a cooling off period

Regretful purchases notoriously happen when you’ve seen something and immediately snap it up without giving it much further thought. Sometimes these purchases work out but more often than not you could end up something that you’ll lose interest in.

This is why it’s important to give yourself a cooling off period. If something catches your eye, sleep on it and reassess in the morning. If you’re still thinking about it then buy it. You’ll know it’s true love when you can’t get it out of your head.

Do the wardrobe test

Ask yourself if what you’re about to buy will realistically work with the rest of your wardrobe. Think about where you could wear it to, what you can wear it with and how many outfits you could pull together now if it were sitting in your wardrobe. If your answer to any of those questions is a bit sketchy then it might be worth reconsidering.

Consider cost per wear

Bear in mind that something is not cheap (even if it’s on sale and been reduced drastically) if you only end up wearing it once. That’s why I always factor in cost per wear whenever I’m buying anything.

Sometimes it can be easy to opt for something that may be slightly cheaper but not what you truly want however if you find that it hardly gets used then you’re not getting value for money. The same goes for buying something super expensive but then finding you barely wear it.

It makes much more sense to hang out for something you truly love. If something works out to be expensive but then you end up wearing it to death and the cost per wear ultimately ends up being $2 a day then you’re definitely onto a winner.

 

Fashion

How bloggers approach style

1st June, 2019

 

Flipping through high fashion magazine shoots and scrolling through their websites and respective social media accounts, I am often in awe of what I see. It’s hard no to be. The styling is immaculate, the pieces used are all ultra fashion forward and everything is just so aspirational. It’s definitely one of the key ways I am inspired in what I wear.

When it comes to style bloggers however, I find the approach is a little different. The styling is definitely more accessible and translates common trends in a way that’s practical and easy to wear in everyday life. As a fashion blogger I love being able to showcase looks that are easy and wearable and the type of look most women would be able to use to inspire an outfit that they can wear to work or out with friends. For me the wearability factor is also important as I’m often shooting my looks using the back of my car as a portable change room and running between fittings and picking up the kids so there’s definitely a more relaxed approach to how I style everything.

I’m friends with a few style bloggers and everyone has an everyday approach to fashion. We use the same bags and shoes multiple times to showcase how important it is to ensure everything you own is versatile and can work back with most of your wardrobe. Also it’s about mixing older pieces with on trend items and giving a look a signature touch. I know I like being able to find a piece I already own and give it a new lease on life by pairing it with a few key accessories of the season such as a particular shoe style or a certain silhouette. Our approach is about styling and making a look our own and something we’re comfortable in as opposed to letting a look wear us. Plus we’re all about versatility. I know when I’m styling my ‘What I Wore’ shoots I like to find outfits that I can take from day to night just by switching my footwear or handbag and I like to ensure I mix designer and high street pieces. And if there’s one things most bloggers like to do it’s experiment. I know I’ll often try on some unexpected pairings to unearth a new outfit combination I hadn’t considered but that makes me feel great when I walk out the door. And ultimately that’s how I hope all my readers feel whenever they come to my blog.

 

Fashion, Shop

What I will never scrimp on in my wardrobe

25th May, 2019

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My wardrobe is an eclectic mix of different pieces at various price points but there are definitely special pieces that I have splurged on. I have always believed in being a discernible shopper and not just purchasing things on a whim so I’m quite strategic in my approach to shopping. I always do my research and will keep an eye out for sales both in store and online as there’s nothing quite like getting a piece you’ve been coveting at half price! That said, there are certain things that I will never scrimp on simply because these pieces are the workhorses of my wardrobe and need to be the best quality possible.

Shoes

Given how much time we spend in them I think shoes have always been a worthwhile investment. Finding good quality shoes will mean that they stand up to the daily wear and tear we put our footwear through and won’t require replacing or repairing as often. I’ve often rationalised that buying a slightly more expensive pair of shoes will often be better value for money than buying several cheaper pairs that will need to be replaced sooner.

Bags

I don’t buy them often so when I do I make sure that a bag is well made, from quality materials and of a style that will remain a classic for years to come. I’m all about quality not quantity in my wardrobe so I’d rather hang out for a slightly more expensive bag that I know will have plenty of longevity than go for an of-the-moment fix. For example I have a Chanel bag that I have had for years and that I still wear regularly and is still in great shape simply because of the craftsmanship that has gone into it. The same goes for my Givenchy bag (above) which I use all the time and I know because it’s so well made I’ll be able to wear it season after season.

Coats

I’ll happily scrimp on things like t-shirts and jeans but outerwear is something I will always willingly splurge on because of the number of times I’ll wear each item. Coats in particular are something I like to purchase each season and will wear throughout the cooler months so I always make sure it’s a classic style, made from a quality fabric such as wool as I will wear it day after day.

Jackets

I regularly wear jackets so I will make sure to buy the best quality that I can as I wear them so often. I have a Balmain blazer that I remember trawling the internet for for years before I finally snapped it up on sale but it’s the kind of strategic purchase I don’t regret one bit as I wear it to death. And yes, it’s definitely more expensive than your average blazer but I often think of things from a cost per wear basis and have definitely got value for money out of this particular buy.

Fashion

How to do winter layering

4th May, 2019

The one thing I really love about winter dressing is the ability to layer different pieces for a warm and cosy look. I love experimenting with textures and big statement pieces such as a coat or boots to create an outfit that will easily withstand cooler temperatures without compromising on style. Effective winter layering requires consideration of the whole look from top to bottom including colours to avoid looking like you just threw on everything in your wardrobe! Over the years I’ve managed to refine my layering formula to a few key things…

Start with the basics

I always start with a cotton singlet or t-shirt underneath as a foundation especially if I’m going to wear a jumper or some sort of knit. Also I find wearing multiple lightweight layers provides ample warmth without your outfit feeling too bulky and cumbersome. I will always finish the look off with a big coat or jacket – this is a great opportunity to make a statement by opting for outerwear in a strong pattern or colour. If it’s especially cold outside I wear a big scarf, my favourite being an oversized Louis Vuitton scarf which makes for a nice (and warm) finishing touch. One thing to be mindful of when layering is to watch out for materials rubbing together, sometimes certain fabrics don’t work well against each other and can end up getting damaged or causing pilling.

Mix textures

One of the things I always do when it comes to winter layering is mixing different fabrics and textures. I find this adds a bit of depth to your look and helps to break it up. I normally do a cotton t-shirt, a knit and then I’ll do a wool coat or a leather jacket or denim jacket.

Choose a base colour

Great winter layering for me requires wearing similar tones. I might choose to go with various shades of grey or stick to neutral tones. If I’m wearing black I won’t do all black, I’ll actually add another piece such as a charcoal knit to help break up what I’m wearing. The same with camel colours – I might do beiges or cream and mix the tones up. Whilst I’ll play with various shades I’ll always ensure that there’s one base colour to ensure the whole look works together.

What are some of your tips for winter layering?
Fashion

The power of the statement shoe

27th April, 2019

I’m a firm believer that shoes can make or break an outfit. This is why I’m all about a statement shoe. An eye-catching pair of shoes can pull your entire outfit together. I think the key to a great statement shoe is in the cut, the material and the colour plus I think they’ve got to be classic in that they last season after season but they’ve also got to have interesting details that make them unique. Even if it’s just a plain black pump there has to be something about it whether its just a beautiful heel or great material. And most of all, it has to be beautifully crafted.

I have plenty of shoe labels that I love but at the moment these are the brands that I think do the perfect statement shoe

Aquazzura have really beautiful designs and have a really interesting look to them.  I have a great pair of Aquazzura snakeskin stilettos that I wear all the time.

I love Tabitha Simmons‘ shoes. I wore a pair of her leopard print stilettos to Melbourne Cup one yaer and I felt they really added an interesting element to my outfit. Her shoes are just a little bit quirky and a lot of fun.

I also love Balenciaga‘s shoe line. They’re classic and are perfectly crafted. As I wear my heels so often I invest a little more in them so they’re great quality and are built to last.

Photography: Tamika Keioskie, Beyleigh Vedelago, StyleSnooperdan

Fashion

The one thing I always do when I plan an outfit

13th April, 2019

Oh dress codes. I find that some people are either a stickler for sticking to a dress code or they will just try and remain in the vicinity of it. I’m the former. In fact, it’s the one thing I will always consider when I plan an outfit. My job often requires me to go from a casual launch one minute to a black tie event the next so to me dress codes are a way of guiding my outfit planning for the week. Even without a stated dress code my brain tends to go into that mode and I will allocate one to whatever event it is I’m going to as it helps provide me with some styling structure.

When it comes to deciding what I’ll be wearing the one thing I never do is start with a single accessory such as a hat or shoes. I know lots of women who will tend to work around a particular piece but it’s just one of those things that has never really worked for me. I tend to get in a better styling frame of mind when I can work with a solid base such as the dress I want to wear (in keeping with the dress code of course!) and then visualise the pieces that will work with it. Usually I find this gives me a more cohesive look and I’m able to pull together something a little easier.

Which camp do you fall into? And how important are dress codes to you when it comes to styling your outfits?