How to Wear 2012 Oscar Trends

Watching the red carpet coverage of the Oscars last night, I couldn’t get enough of the stars’ gowns this year. Though usually I can quickly write some off as “ew,” this year I was ooh-ing and aah-ing all over the place.

To pick my favorites would be to post nearly every photo, so instead I’m going to focus on some of the night’s most popular trends and how we mere mortals can rock them.

Trend: Peplum

Michelle Williams in Louis Vuitton

Tina Fey in Carolina Herrera

$$$: Le Petite Robe Di Chiara Boni

$$: Nasty Gal

$: Forever 21

Trend: White

Milla Jokovich in Elie Saab

Shailene Woodley in Valentino

Rooney Mara in Givenchy

Gwyneth Paltrow in Tom Ford

$$$: Cache

$$: Nordstrom

$: Lulus

Trend: Beaded and sequined details
(Milla deserves acknowledgment here as well, of course!)

Berenice Bejo in Elie Saab

Rose Byrne in Vivienne Westwood

Octavia Spencer in Tadashi Shoji

$$$: Jovani

$$: Adriana Papell at Nordstrom

Badgley Mischka only $ when you rent it at RentTheRunway.com!

Trend: Textured skirts

Cameron Diaz in Gucci Premiere

Kristen Wiig in J Mendel

Viola Davis in Vera Wang

$$$: House of Fraser

$$: ASOS

$: Threadsence

Some of the Oscar gowns included here weren’t my favorites, and there were definitely some favorites that I did leave out. Check out here and here, where I got all of these shots, for plenty more!

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Recognizing Stylish Students on Campus: An Interview with the BC Sartorialist

“Hey Erin- I’m here. I have a camera in my hand.” This was the message Alex Lee sent me, in order to identify himself for our planned meeting at the Chocolate Bar. His camera is currently his most distinguishing accessory. Alex Lee is making himself known on the Boston College campus for his own version of the famous Sartorialist blog started by Scott Schuman. Today, Alex’s blog, the BC Sartolialist, has over 25,000 page views.

For someone who recognizes high-style students on campus, Alex does not disappoint in his own personal style. Despite the fact he is not the one being photographed, his outfit makes an impression at our interview. When I asked him to describe what he was wearing, he was very detailed. He began with his hat. It is from a small independent brand, ONLY New York. His striped jacket and printed shirt are both vintage Woolrich. His gold chain necklaces, a favorite find from eBay, feature Egyptian-style pharaohs. The finishing touches are his sweet Reebok pumps that he bought at Bodega in Boston. His outfit on the day of our interview matches his self-proclaimed style: “ a mixture of street-ware and vintage.” He likes clothing that “most people will not have.”

Alex’s interest in fashion began in middle school and continued into high school. He admired interesting clothes that made people look different. Entering college, he believed he would have more opportunities to observe different style possibilities. In addition, he believed this would be a time where he could “define [his] own style.” Interestingly,  his passion for photography only developed, in order to express his interest in fashion. He purchased his now frequently-used camera shortly before he enrolled at Boston College. He claims that his inspiration from Scott Schuman’s blog is centered around a “love [for] capturing people in their own element in their daily lives.” He shares a similar appreciation for “people who like to look good and be their own person.”

Alex transferred from Syracuse University to Boston College for the start of the 2011 fall semester. He admits that on the whole, there is not a lot of variation among the styles of the student population. He insists that this is due to a high prevalence for “preppy” styles. Yet, he is quick to acknowledge that there is a solid base of students who are stepping outside of their comfort zones, so that they can truly be classified as “originals.” In comparison to his previous school, Alex mentions that you seem similar patterns there. According to him, there is little variation with the styles at his previous school, especially among the female students. He believes that the male students at Syracuse had more of an artistic edge than the more preppy ones at B.C.

When I questioned Alex about his favorite outfit so far, he seemed conflicted. He kept showing me different pictures and pointing out certain details that he liked. In the end, he decided he couldn’t really pick a favorite. He enthusiastically insisted, “I like all of them! That’s why I took the picture.” Although this is currently a passion he is pursuing, in addition to his studies, Alex hopes this could eventually turn into a job opportunity in the future. He wants to intern at Karmaloop, a street-wear retailer based in Boston, over the summer. Outside of college, he would like work in fashion merchandising or marketing. He also mentions the possibility of eventually starting and managing his own brand, possibly helping with the design aspect. No matter what career he decides to pursue, his work as the BC Sartorialist has proven  that Alex is capable of greatness simply through his determination to combine his interest in fashion with hard work. He humbly admitted he spends approximately 10-15 hours per week working on his blog. Alex assures me, “It is almost like a job.”

Alex Lee definitely has talent as a style blogger. In addition, his kindness and his professionalism during the interview proved to me that he has real potential to be a success. As we shook hands, he graciously said, “Thank you for meeting with me. I like the way you dress. I like the way you act.” I considered this a true compliment from Boston College’s very own Sartorialist.  

Dressing for Success: It’s Interview Week

The first few weeks back at school in January can be a kind of extended “internship hell week” for students, especially juniors. Having gotten a taste of the internship hunt last year as a sophomore, I am back this year with my game face on.

Last week was full of information sessions, interview preparation (BC’s Career Center is a fantastic tool, use it!), and a two-day career fair. I had to dress up every day, navigating my way through dress codes such as “business formal,” “business casual,” or “casual.” Every time one of these events came up in conversation, the question naturally arose: “What are you going to wear?!”

Interview hell week didn’t end with this weekend, however. More information sessions and plenty of interviews await us juniors this week (not to mention seniors looking for full-time work and sophomores getting an early start). Here’s my guide for how to dress and where to buy it, so you can spend your time preparing for the interview instead of stressing about your appearance.

Business Formal

When a company specifies “business formal” for an information session or interview, they mean a skirt- or pant-suit, button-up shirt, and heels. Honestly, this is probably the easiest dress code to master. Buy one great outfit that you feel really confident in, and keep it on hand.

Express Pant Suit

Express Skirt Suit

Express Button-up Shirt

J. Crew Pant Suit

Ann Taylor Button-up Shirt

Macy's Skirt Suit

Banana Republic Skirt Suit

 

Just make sure that you have one suit where you bought both the blazer and skirt/pants together, as the resident CSOM career adviser warned. Don’t worry about wearing the same outfit over and over. Most likely, the employers won’t notice; and if they do, they know many of us are broke college students trying to land a first “real” job.

Business Casual

“Business casual” is where things start getting tricky. Generally, you can’t go wrong with suit pants or a suit skirt and a nice top. I usually stick to a more basic button-up, but I have also seen dressy tanks and sweaters. Including the pair from your “business formal” outfit, have 2-3 bottoms in neutral tones (black, grey, brown) that you can mix and match with a few button-ups.

Gap Dress Pants

Banana Republic Top

Banana Republic Top

Casual

Last week, I was surprised to see one bank specify “casual” for the dress code at their information sessions. I stuck with one of my trusty button-ups, and paired it with skinny black pants and riding boots. When I arrived, I saw a mixture of outfits, from guys in complete suits with ties to a couple of girls in jeans and a button-up. I think the lesson I learned on this day is that when it comes to potential employers, over-dressing is always better than under-dressing.

Heels

At 5’8″, I rarely wear heels. But as a general rule I wear them every time I meet with a potential employer. They will never hurt your cause, rather improve your posture; and, we’ve all heard about studies that have suggested people in leadership positions tend to be a few inches taller than average. As girls we are lucky that we can artificially add a few inches to our height and look the better for it.

All of that said, make sure your heels are appropriate. Keep them at 2″-3″, neutral toned pumps.

Steve Madden Unityy Pumps

Stuart Weitzman Easily Pump

Kate Spade New York Madia

Express Heels

Look Alike for Less: Top, Jimmy Choo Logan d'Orsay Pump; Bottom, Payless Pump

Hair and Make-up

Just like your go-to business formal outfit, have a go-to beauty routine for days that you are meeting with potential employers. Ponytails are perfect, but you don’t have to be afraid to leave your hair down either. Just make sure to pin the front of it back so you aren’t tempted to fix or play with it (I am guilty of this). If you’re going to be tempted, pull it back.

Your approach to make-up should be similar to your approach to heels on the day of an interview. Definitely wear some to put your best foot forward and show that you care about your appearance. But keep it basic–it shouldn’t draw attention away from your scintillating personality and resume. Cover-up, blush, a pale eye shadow and mascara should do it.

Well, there you have it! Take an hour now to put together a few outfits and plan your beauty routine. Then when you have ten minutes to get changed between class and an information session, you won’t break a sweat! Good luck…

Frilly Things

Yesterday, as I sat in my room procrastinating on Pinterest (per usual), I noticed a pattern in the fashion shots and apparel that I like to “pin.”  They all have a lot of really intricate details.  From beading to embroidery, lace, rhinestones, colors, patterns, fabrics, and so on, every single photo had some detail or another that made it pop.  As I thought more about it, I realized that this is how I like to style my own outfits too.  I try to have at least one piece in each outfit have some detail that makes it stand out from the others, making the outfit just a little more special.

With Spring coming up, I keep picturing all the different things I can wear, and I keep coming back to lace and eyelet.  What can I say, I like frilly things!  They are both so delicate, but command a certain presence that not many other fabrics can.  They are classically beautiful, but can be worn with almost anything.  Both are so versatile that they can be edgy, natural, preppy, modern, and romantic, depending on what you put with them.

perfect for the evening, a simple, but romantic lace dress looks great when belted and paired with a black clutch

the lace detailing on these shorts keeps them effortless and refined

the lace shirt paired with the blazer and necklace is perfect for the daytime. swap the shorts for a pair of jeans or black leggings, and it's perfect for nighttime too!

a lace crop top with shorts or jeans is casual and natural

a little bit more formal, this eyelet dress looks classic, elegant and effortless

Lace and eyelet are feminine, flattering, and easy.  They can be dressed up or down and always look pretty.  I’m getting so excited just thinking about all the ways I’m going to incorporate them into my Spring wardrobe!!

In the mean time, I’m going to keep searching for inspiration and pinning everything I find on my Pearls & Lace Pinterest board and pretend that it’s warm out so I can start wearing them…

xoxo,

Caitlin

Photo Sources:

http://inspired-design.tumblr.com/post/6894849722

http://ohthelovelythings.blogspot.com/2011/09/happy-friday.html

http://www.tumblr.com/reblog/16543632244/Dbaxb83t?redirect_to=%252Fdashboard%252F32%252F16544017502%253Flite

http://www.kaboodle.com/reviews/butterfly-lace-crop-top

http://www.sunnysummerdresses.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Banana-Republic-Aliana-Eyelet-Racerback-Dress.jpg?cda6c1

Get Down like Dora and her Backpack

I love bags. I really do, they’re such an amazing accessory. There are so many different types, sizes, materials and brands. They never hurt your feet or make you feel uncomfortable (sometimes the pants get tight after a trip to an amazing restaurant or White Mountain, there’s no judgement here). But since I’ve been at school I’ve encountered a dilemma. I carry a backpack every day to class, and I’m definitely not coordinated enough to handle a pocketbook and a backpack. I have six bags here at school with me, each a different color and size, and every day I pass by them in an effort to get at my mountainous sweater collection and they look mournfully at me, begging to be used. But what’s a girl to do, right? I love buying bags, and I see new ones all the time that I want, but the ones I do have go unused most of the time while I’m up at school anyway. But today I stumbled upon  Herschel Supply Co., and a whole new realm of possibilities has been opened up for me. BACKPACKS. I have to carry one anyway, so why not have multiple cute ones…..right?

*All Images via Herschel Supply Co. website

Even the lookbook is unreal! If anyone wants to find whatever little slice of paradise they used for the shoot and go there with me, let me know because it looks beautiful. I’d love to go traipsing around the hills and beaches in the beautiful dresses and sweaters they’ve chosen, and the bags look great on guys too. There are so many options for colors and sizes that I’m definitely going to have a hard time choosing, and I can’t wait to go adventuring with my new backpack!!

-Christine

Christmas come late!

Hello everyone and welcome back! I know that everyone is probably very excited to be heading back to class, right? Kidding, I know we’re all missing our couches, our friends and, most importantly, home cooking. So yesterday instead of doing my eighty five pages of reading, I decided to take a comprehensive look at all the stores and blogs I love, and my day INSTANTLY turned around when I meandered onto the Brandy Melville website and discovered they had made a major change. ALERT THE PRESSES, YOU CAN NOW SHOP ONLINE FOR THEM!

Ladies, if you’ve gotten to this next paragraph and haven’t already googled the brand and started shopping, you’re missing out. I don’t use caps lock casually. I discovered Brandy Melville one day when my friend and I were shopping in Soho in New York City. It was pouring rain and we didn’t have umbrellas, so when we got out of the subway on Spring Street we ducked into the first store we saw; and so an obsession was born.

There are so many amazing features to both the clothing Brandy Melville sells and the stores themselves. Now there are no Brandy Melville locations in Boston ( I really hope this changes), but if you have a hankering to visit a store (and I suggest you do), there are locations in California, which is a bit far, or you can visit my hometown and go to the locations on Spring Street in New York or their newer store on Broadway, also in Soho. Not  only do the stores stock all their fabulous clothing, they also have art, cool signs and home accessories for sale.

Now onto the most important part: the clothes!!! First of all, I’ll say this: you will be hard-pressed to find softer tee shirts. I’m not joking, they are my favorite tees because of how absurdly comfortable they are, and I have quite a collection of them (8 to be exact, and now that I have the ability to buy them online, I have a feeling that that number is about to skyrocket). You can get plain tanks and tees or ones with designs on them, cropped or regular length. Almost everything is “One Size Fits All” and I find that to be pretty accurate; my friends and I are all different sizes but we always trade items in the dressing rooms of the store and find that one item will fit us all, though sometimes in a different way. And one of my personal favorite parts of the brand? Everything is SO reasonably priced. You can buy a great cropped tank from there to go out in for fourteen dollars. Let me repeat that: fourteen dollars. I’ve never bought something in the store for more than thirty five dollars (though their sweaters, which are super cozy, tend to be a little bit more). You can find everything there: bags, jewelry, tees, sweaters, skirts, jeans, shorts. Here’s a look at some of my favorite pieces from their online selection (I should mention that I already have about half of these items).

*All images via the Brandy Melville website

Obsessed yet? Happy Shopping!

-Christine

Put Some Spring in your Step with Sorbet Inspired Pieces!

Though it’s not exactly warm outside, and spring might feel like it is light years away, it is much closer than you think.  What could possibly be more exciting than the warm weather, longer days, longer nights, and looking uber fabulous in this spring’s hottest trends?  Nothing.

Personally, I’m most excited for Spring 2012’s hot color scheme, which features colors that aren’t quite neon and aren’t quite pastel, but somewhere in between.  Inspired by the colors of sorbet, gelato, and sherbet, these colors keep things sweet and cool.

Jean Pierre Braganza Spring 2012

Jean Pierre Braganza Spring 2012

Jean Pierre Braganza Spring 2012

Jill Stuart Spring 2012

Jill Stuart Spring 2012

Jill Stuart Spring 2012

Maria Grachvogel Spring 2012

Paul & Joe Spring 2012

Paul & Joe Spring 2012

Sachin & Babi Spring 2012

Sachin & Babi Spring 2012

Tibi Spring 2012

So let’s get prepared and inspired.  I’m going to think warm thoughts and about cool, sweet desserts, and hope that maybe Spring 2012 will come more quickly!

xoxo,

Caitlin