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Take a bow

No, I’m not talking about the Rihanna song. I’m talking about Minnie Mouse’s signature accessory which has made it’s way into the fashion world: the humble bow.

Ha! I’m a trendsetter!

The bow is actually a kind of knot and its main purpose is actually to hold things together. Hence the terms bow tie and hair bows. But increasingly, bows are appearing in fashion for less functional purposes. Instead, they are used because of their aesthetic value: its ability to give a piece of clothing a girly, (sometimes) retro and young vibe.

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Depending on what you wanna achieve, the humble bow can take you from girly chic to edgy chic depending on the colour and pattern.

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VERSUS

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Either way, the bow trend looks like it’s here to stay! And out of the many bow clothing and accessories I’ve polyvored here, my one favourite thing is the Miss Selfridge bow tights. I will definitely be looking out for those in stores! Do you have a favourite bow item? Would you jump onto the bow bandwagon or give it a pass because it’s wayyyy too kiddy? Share your views with us!

Also, Ruth will be out of action the next couple of days because her macbook pro charger died on her (phooey!) but don’t worry, she’ll be back real soon and she’s got lots of interesting reviews and updates in store so watch this space!

Scarving for more

I used to associate scarves with air stewardesses because they were the only people who used to don them.

Service with a smile

But increasingly, scarves are seen everywhere! And they come in a whole myriad of shapes, sizes, colours, patterns and material. For cold climates, there’s the thick wool knitted variety, and for drier climates, there’s the thin chiffon headscarf or that silk handkerchief, the lightweight cotton bandana or classy cravat.

They come in various shapes and sizes too. The square-cut scarf is great for folding that classic bandana while the loop scarf can double up as a snood.

Scarves are just so versatile and they can change an entire outfit just by virtue of how you wish to tie them. You could loop one around your waist to create a sash, don it on your head as a headscarf or just wear it the classic way: around the neck. And the latest trend? Turning your scarf into a turban.

This will give you an idea of the various ways you can tie a scarf (admittedly, some of them are a little outdated):

28 ways to wear a scarf

So here are my top 10 (classic + modern) ways of wearing a scarf:

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Other scarf suggestions

  • You can try wearing a silk scarf under the lapel of your shirt or blouse. The soft silky texture of the scarf makes it ideal to wear over a shirt or blouse and it adds that touch of femininity. Great for the office!
  • You could wear a cashmere or pashmina scarf (if it’s big enough) as a shawl to accompany your cocktail dress. It’ll keep you warm and it’s a wonderful accessory to drape around your shoulders.
  • Make a bold statement with a brightly coloured (red!) /patterned scarf (think houndstooth!), tied in a long loop knot. This would look great over plain t-shirts.
  • A printed square scarf folded in the triangular fashion would look great with a jacket or coat and keep you looking toasty and fashionable in the cold winter months.

Hope these suggestions are useful to you! So remember, if you want to spice up a boring outfit, be sure to throw on a scarf! It is the easiest way to stay effortlessly chic.

Shine sequins, shine

Sequins and I never got along. She is showy and proud, always seeking to glisten in the sun/moonlight, screaming for attention in her neon hues (I always think getai, Beauty World and the 70s when I see her. *Shivers*). I on the other hand, am understated and shy. I never dreamed that one day, our two worlds would ever collide. But indeed that impossible day can finally be within reach.

I realised, that the secret to wearing sequins is really, to find a balance and to not overdo it. Pick one sequinned item. It could be a top, a dress, a skirt (not all of em together! You don’t wanna be a disco ball) and everything else has to be muted so that the whole outfit works out harmoniously. You want to highlight your glittery awesomeness and by doing so, you need to provide a contrast. Just as light needs darkness, you need neutral colours like black, white, grey and brown to balance everything out.

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If you are scared to wear a completely sequinned outfit, for fear of the mermaid complex (some girls don’t like the fish scales look, I being one of em), then you can start by wearing small sequinned accessories. It could be a little clutch bag or a sequinned necklace. These small touches could add that much needed shine and sparkle to an evening look.

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Go for the unconventional. While most sequinned items in stores often come in either taupe, beige, black, silver, gold and white, don’t be afraid to pick a bold, bright colour (especially since the New Year is right around the corner andNew Year parties are great excuses for being bold and daring with your fashion choices!) Also, try out items that don’t usually use sequins in their design like this fedora and sneakers that I have polyvored. Creativity is key!

There are many ways that you can incorporate sequins into your everyday wardrobe. Just be sure to work with your style. I for one can never pull off a dress entirely made of sequins (Ruth and I dared each other to wear sequinned dresses once and it was a disaster albeit a hilarious one). So instead of forcing myself to adopt the trend wholly and blindly, I work with what I am comfortable with. This means, a neutral colour palette and subtle detailing of sequins at hem lines or along the collar so there’s that little bit of sparkly magic going on, but not so much that I feel completely icky and uncomfortable.

My choice picks for sequin wear:

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Also, be sure to remember that sequinned clothing are very very fragile and those little bits might fall off if not taken care of properly ( it’ll be a pain to glue it back, trust me). So remember to turn your clothes inside out when you put them in the wash. If possible, handwash instead of dumping it in the washing machine.

For more inspiration on how to wear sequins, check out Ruth’s post on the Burlesque and Beauty for Burlesque.

Burlesque

When I think of the word “Burlesque”, what comes to mind is the magical world of Moulin Rouge, one of my favourite movies of all time. Feathers and sequins galore, tight corsets and huge tutu skirts. One thing about the burlesque women – they loved their fur but always, always showed off their gorgeous legs. An interesting balance of too much and too little.

I actually love corsets – most of us aren’t perfect and though we’re of the right size, we’re not necessarily of the right shape. From time to time when I feel like wearing something figure hugging, I do wear a light corset beneath. Do note however, there’s a great difference between plastic bendable corsets (the type I use) and steel-boned corsets. Plastic boned corsets merely shape your body, i.e. there’s no constriction involved. However, if you’d like to minimize the size of your waist and force your body into the hourglass shape, steel-boned corsets are the way to go :) I have yet to try a Steel-boned corset, but the word is that they’re exceedingly uncomfortable, which makes me admire these Burlesque girls all the more. the pain they must’ve gone through!

But the Burlesque girls aren’t always clad in their tutus and corsets – one trend they really rocked was the Glamour girl, which many Hollywood divas of the Golden age took after, with figure hugging gold dresses, cut exceedingly low to celebrate their assets. Certainly, to emphasize their “star” factor, sequins weren’t out of place either.

One movie I’m really keen to see next year is Christina Anguilera’s feature film debut – Burlesque. The gorgeous sets, the anticipation of hearing Christina sing, plus the song and dance numbers look and sound fantastic.

Ever since her rival days with Britney, I’ve been a huge fan of Christina. Nowadays with audio-editing software one can never tell how talented a singer is (case in point: Glee) but Christina emerged as a great singer way before that software was made, & I always loved how she seemed to put her heart fully into the songs she sang. Here’s two clips as previews for the upcoming movie:

With regards to Cher’s appearances in the movie – well Cher has always kinda scared me a little bit, I’m not sure if it’s the husky tone of her voice, or if it’s the fact that she kinda looks like a tranny from certain angles. The hairstyle she’s been given in the movie does nothing to help flatter her long face either.

Considering that Christina is 29 this year, she looks surprisingly young! Moreover, I love her girl-next-door look in this movie. somehow it’s fresh, seeing that she’s always had a large variety of hairstyles and thick makeup in her showbiz years. To do a burlesque- inspired look, I’d recommend a balance between exaggerated, showy pieces and plain pieces. Obviously baring one’s full legs like these girls do isn’t quite the option, so I’d go for skinny jeans instead :)

most importantly, accessorize! Accessorize can make or break your outfit. don’t make the mistake of carrying say, a bulky messenger bag with these looks. go for a cute, small clutch that complements the outfit. I wouldn’t recommend statement necklaces, but a studded ring or earrings would do nicely.

click on the outfit images for information on the products featured

Aye Aye Captain!

Betsey Johnson is well known not only for cartwheeling across the runway, but for her whimsical creations featuring bright colours and one of a kind prints. As we look ahead at Spring 2011, we see that the nautical trend is back in vogue. That means navy blue, anchors, sailor hats and tailored cuts. All aboard? Aye aye captain!

 Betsey Johnson Spring 2011:

I think out of the entire collection, these are two of the more wearable looks. I love the fitted blazer with bronze buttons down the front as well as the striped detail at the sleeves. It’s such a quirky twist to an old classic.

The striped dress looks like something you can wear for an everyday look. The blue colorblock at the middle is very slimming while the V neckline draws the eyes to the bosom. It looks so casual, comfortable yet very flattering. I would definitely wear something like that.

I am actually loving this siren red dress. The material looks like chiffon, you know, semi-transluscent and flowy yet fitted at the top. Very va va voom. This would be tres chic for an evening dinner of sorts. I would wear this with a statement necklace else the neck would seem alittle too bare but I like the simplicity of the outfit. I think almost anyone can pull this off.  

This outfit is just so cute right? It’s like a playsuit but it’s not! It’s a blouse/shorts combi in an adorable blue with red polka dots. I like the fact that the shorts is relatively high waisted I am totally digging the high waisted trend btw (most of my pants/shorts are high-waisted, come to think of it). This gives me the lazy Sunday vibe where you are lounging with friends and chatting over tea. It’s cool enough to wear for our hot weather and sigh… I want it already!

So there you have it! My favourite looks off the runway that feature the nautical trend. Sadly, these gorgeous looks come with a hefty price tag so I have polyvored my way to happiness! Searching for fashion dupes muahaha… here are my finds!

 

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Untitled by carelock_ featuring a nautical dress

Hope this post has inspired you to try out this trend! Have a good week ahead!

5 ways to wear tights

Previously, we featured Ruffles and Lace, this week we want to focus on tights! Patterned, opaque, sheer, coloured… we’ve got it all covered! Here are 5 brilliant ways to wear them!

1. Boy meets Girl

Give preppy, boyish, menswear a feminine twist with some sexy translucent black patterned tights!

2. Double Agent

Jazz up a boring black ensemble with some boldly patterned tights. Now you can tease everyone with your mysterious double identity (and cougar charm)!

3. Rich Decadence

Opaque, dark-coloured tights look absolutely gorgeous when paired with rich fabrics like wool, sequins and velvets. Get your Blair Waldorf on!

4. 80s Nostalgia

Patterned, transluscent 80s tights are back in vogue! Pair it with a bubble hem skirt or high waisted shorts and you are ready to party the night away!

5. Knit Wit

Photos courtesy of Refinery29.com

 

Now that the weather is cooler, it is time to dress up those sweaters and cardigans! Add some color to a muted ivory sweater dress to keep things interesting or if you are all for subtlety, ribbed knit tights might just do the trick!

There you have it, 5 fun, flirty ways to wear tights!

Lusting for Lace

Ah… lace. Whether you are a conservative person who restricts its use only to lingerie or someone who is constantly pushing the envelope and trying to sneak it into your everyday outfit to add that little bit of a zing, lace is surely a trend that is here to stay.

When I think of lace, I think, decadence because of its delicate detailing. I think sophistication because cut is so important in making a lace garment look expensive and I think sexiness because even that little bit of lace trim on a plain camisole creates a peek-a-boo effect, you know, innerwear as outerwear. That just gives a girl that added boost of confidence and that is oh so sexy.

Thus, I have polyvored a couple of my favourite lace items. I love the cream lace sequined bolero from Miss Selfridge the most. It has an old world Peranakan feel with all that intricate embroidery which could potentially make it the highlight/centre piece of a simple tank and jeans ensemble. Full list of other items after the jump!

Read the rest of this entry

Romantic Ruffles

Ruffles are starting to grow on me. I used to think they were too over the top (you know those blouses with a waterfall of ruffles down the front?) and too generic cos so many people wore the same kinds of ruffle tops to work. But I’ve since changed my mind. I think the key is finding the right kind of cut to suit your frame. Being rather small chested, I like the added volume that ruffles provide and it adds a feminine, flirty quality to say, a pair of boyish looking jeans. So here are 6 looks i’ve put together to showcase the Ruffles trend. Enjoy!

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Untitled by carelock_ featuring a leather tote

Links to various items after the jump! Read the rest of this entry

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