From Forever 21...
From Urban Outfitters...
From American Apparel...
When was the last time you wore one?
|Open Mind Fashion||
Return of the killer bodysuit
While we weren't looking, bodysuits (also known as leotards) came back--and not just for the dancer or the baby in your life. I do love that they never come untucked & always give you a smooth line. I've posted some tamer ones below, but you'll find some hotties out there!--especially from Forever 21, Asos, Love Culture, Urban Outfitters, & American Apparel (click here for the AA ones if you dare!).
From Forever 21...
From Urban Outfitters...
From American Apparel...
When was the last time you wore one?
Old Navy & J. Crew both carry tons of cotton basics--t-shirts, crewnecks, t-necks, & cardigans--my guess is you have a few in your closet now. Basics at J. Crew & J. Crew Factory typically cost a little more than those at Old Navy.
Is it worth it to spend a bit more?
My friend biologist Rachel Willard decided to do a roughly scientific comparison of the two. Rachel picked a basic she wears all the time--the black cardigan--& ordered one from Old Navy & one from J. Crew Factory.
Here are her findings:
"The Old Navy cardigan arrived first, which probably made it easy to like. It was a nice, dark black, fit well (even the arms were long enough), & had a good amount of stretch to it. The buttons were on firmly, & it didn't seem to gape or bunch anywhere.
I wore it one day over a dress, & it was OK wearing it. I had a hard time figuring out how to button or unbutton it to wear it--having it partially buttoned meant that it flapped in strange ways, rather than lay flat.
When the J. Crew one arrived about a week later (how's that for taking a while to ship?), I pulled it out of the bag. Immediately, I noticed that the buttons were much higher quality, with an antique look to them. The sweater actually had 3/4 sleeves, rather than full sleeves, which was fine with me, although I didn't see it on the website. It seemed a lot smaller than the Old Navy sweater, despite the fact that I ordered a medium from both places. The waist was a bit shorter, it was more fitted, & the best part...the material was thicker & silkier. If it were sheets, I'd say that it had a higher thread count & was made from Egyptian cotton, rather than just run of the mill cotton.
I was still skeptical, despite the cute buttons & silky material. (Both are 100% cotton.)
So, a day later, I wore it to work over a sleeveless blouse. It was a miracle. That silky sweater melded to fit me just perfectly. I left it unbuttoned. It rested perfectly with no flopping or flapping. It was tapered in a flattering way, & the waist hit at the perfect spot. I buttoned it up to see how it looked - perfect. Practically - perfect.
The final test was a run on cold through the washer & dried flat. Both maintained their shape, although the J. Crew sweater looked EXACTLY like it had before it was laundered. The Old Navy sweater wasn't as vivid anymore, & it seemed to lose most of its stretch.
So, the tally.... the Old Navy sweater (on sale with free shipping) was $15. The J. Crew sweater was (on sale with free shipping) $20. I was happy enough with the Old Navy sweater until I wore the J. Crew one. It made the Old Navy one look cheap, less flattering, & the washing machine told the tale of the lesser fabric. I think that the Old Navy sweater is probably OK if you plan to just wear it once or twice. I feel like a lot of their clothes are practically disposable.
The J. Crew sweater will last me years, I'm sure. Definitely worth an extra five bucks."
Postscript: Rachel returned the Old Navy cardi because of the fading. The cashier said that they get a lot of their black items returned for that reason.
Where do you buy your basics?
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Rash behavior is eating raw onions before a date. Rash is driving across the Howard Franklin Bridge with your gas tank on empty. Rash is getting married in Vegas to someone you just met. Rash is drinking the Muy Grande Jalapeño Margarita & then getting on The Mind Eraser roller coaster.
Rash is also heading to the beach or to a midday pool party without sun protection.
I have a theory that with global warming increasing its effects, pretty soon we'll be in full-body swimsuits again like they wore in the 20s or even more armor-like, like the wetsuit J.Crew is selling now (below).
Meanwhile, rashguards, or protective swimshirts, have been gaining in popularity & spreading from the younger set (children) to adults, even to men. Athleta, Lands' End, Eddie Bauer, Solumbra, J. Crew & J. Crew Factory, REI, Dick's Sporting Goods, & Old Navy among others sell them.
Rashguards keep you from having to apply so much sunscreen, from getting wrinkled before your time, & from getting skin cancer. I personally think they look classic & stylish too.
I wear rashguards as regular shirts or athletic wear in addition to wearing them as a swim cover-up. I look for lightweight fabric & a t-shirt style rather than turtleneck. Here are a few rashguards that fit this description...
The best deal--$19.99--from Eddie Bauer
I bought both of the tops above, & I'm super happy with them. I prefer the berry just slightly over the blue.
From Dick's Sporting Goods
From Lands' End
What's rash to you?
My Three Tunics
Summer days at their best are lazy days of sleep, swim, sun, repeat. One day blurs into the next. Each morning you grab for the same pair of shorts, the same top. At night you might dress things up with jeans or a dress if you're going out.
My pile on the floor this summer consists of some swimwear & tunics. I posted a bunch of tunics I love here. I wear them sometimes as a swimsuit cover-up & sometimes for a casual workday.
Here are my three favorites that I'm wearing daily...
I've owned this tunic for years, but I pulled it out again when temperatures heated up. I found it a couple summers ago for next to nothing in the swim section at the GAP. Similar here & here.
I just got this tunic from J. Crew Factory for about $20. I daresay it looks better on the stand than it does on me. I may have to return it, but it's so soft & comfy, I haven't decided yet. Figure I could wear this one for work.
This tunic is also a crinkle tunic from J. Crew. I found it on ebay for about $30, & I'm wearing it pretty much daily no matter what I have planned that day. My husband said the color looks good on me, which goes a long way toward helping me love it :-) Today & most days I'm wearing it with these white shorts.
So what about you? What are you throwing on every morning this summer? I hope you're having a fun, easy summer!
Too showy, too inappropriate, too young, too much--some tees you just can't wear.
Have you ever bought a $70 tee? I think it's so cute, but there's no way I'd buy it.
Harvard, Princeton, Standford, Duke--unless if you or a family member went there, you don't get to wear the tee (right?).
I think this image is cool, but could I walk around with a Motel sign on my shirt? I guess I could, but it took me too long to decide & now the tee is sold out :-(
This Nike t-shirt & tank are widely available, but do you think it's conceited to say you're all that?
I love Where the Wild Things Are, but it seems like a kid, not an adult, would wear this tee, do you think?
Do you agree? Which tee would you wear or not?
Tunics: what to wear in the heat
I've been hunting for tunics to wear to work & for fun with shorts this summer. Here are some of my favorites...
From Calypso St. Barth
Many more tunics from Calypso St. Barth at all prices & styled with white skinnies & shorts here.
From J. Crew Factory
From Piperlime. Many more Piperlime kurtas here.
From Old Navy
From Tea Collection
If you want to look put together when you're melting down, a tunic might be the answer. Do you agree?
Before there was Pinterest
Before there was Pinterest, we found other ways to save images of beautiful things. In college, I would tape them to my closet door. For the past several years, my method has been to tear out the page with the image & save it in my bedside table. Whenever I've had a window of relaxed time, I'll pull them out to review--sometimes for style inspiration, sometimes just to admire.
Here are some of my favorite saved images that I've saved in my bedside table...
I've saved this image because I love how she's layered her necklaces.
Such beautiful dresses! Such lovely necklaces. Do they actually exist...? Where would you wear them?
Julianne Moore--a role model of style & elegance at any age
Another role model of elegance & grace
I love this chair & its endearing occupant.
I love her spirit, the light, her 60s miniskirt with big buttons.
Edgy yet warm, this look & the fishnets appeal to me!
It's the light again, the beauty of winter, the beauty of charcoal gray.
Do you save magazines, catalogs, pages, cartoons, images? Do you use Pinterest?
Here's what not to wear.
Have fun but don't overdress; you'll just feel self-conscious.
Let's face it: most people do not dress up as much as this for a bbq (but most of our backyards aren't like this either :)...
So what should you wear? Here are 5 options.
1. Printed shorts & a t-shirt, cami/tank, or simple top
Almost every store is carrying cute printed shorts in a variety of different lengths right now. Throw on a t-shirt or simple top, & you're good to go.
2. White jeans or cropped blue jeans with a sleeveless top or tunic
Last summer, my standard bbq outfit was rolled-up skinny white jeans & solid tees. It was kind of sporty without being dead casual.
For today's bbq, I like the idea of cropped jeans & a halter top. I think I can vary this outfit throughout the summer with any sunny tunic or sleeveless top.
3. A Zand skirt & a swimsuit top, tankini, or t-shirt
Just add a swimsuit top & you're sure to look cute but still pretty casual (you may still hear "you're dressed up!" but you're just as likely to hear "what a cool skirt!").
4. A truly casual dress
5. Beach pants with a swimsuit top, tankini, or tank
I've been so happy to see the resurgence of wide-leg pants, especially in thin, gauzy fabrics!
So what are you wearing to the upcoming Father's Day barbecue? Maybe you'll just throw on some shorts & a t-shirt or just wear whatever you have on now. I guess it doesn't really matter, but I do hope you have fun!
What do you wear when you go to a barbecue??
If only someone would be kind enough to send me on a Grand Tour this summer...
They're a little pricey, but I love these classic vintage soccer & Olympic tees of countries around the world. I think my favorites are Germany, Italy, France, Portugal, Spain, Argentina, & Mexico, but I like them all--for men or women.
Head scarves--boho, retro, fab
Marilyn Monroe, Sophia Loren, & Elizabeth Taylor wore them. Head scarves seem to be coming back into vogue as I see more & more images in the catalogs & online of models with head scarves.
I've always loved the look but have never managed to make it work for me. Is it worth the fuss to try to make them work?
Here are some ways women from the past & the present have styled head scarves....
Some images from the past:
Marilyn Monroe wore scarves in solid colors that complemented her outfits & her skin tone.
Elegant Elizabeth Taylor with graceful silk in her hair...
Sophia Loren is known for wearing head scarves...
Some current images...
I love this look of braiding a scarf through your hair.
I also love this draped look...
I can't see myself tying a scarf on my head as they have in this H&M photo, but it is cute!
Sahalie.com has long offered what look like easy-to-use headwraps. Do you have any experience with them?
Have you ever worn a head scarf?
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