Thursday, October 25, 2007

Fashion Help for a Stay-at-Home Mom

Dear Shes, I have loved all of you for so long! You have definitely helped me through many seasons of style. However, I have a new issue. This former fashionista is now a stay at home mom and I fear that I have relegated myself to the traditional SAHM uniform - jeans, t-shirts and pajamas. It is hard to dress nice with a one-year-old, but what do you suggest that is comfortable, fashionable and functional (not to mention affordable now that we are one income family)? Kisses, Lindsey

Dearest Chic Mom,

Let's nip this little fashion crisis in the bud before you stray any further! First and foremost, pajamas are not daywear! Repeat after me PAJAMAS ARE NOT DAYWEAR! Shop Girl would be horrified, as indeed she was the one time she caught me at the corner market in my flannel pj's and trench coat (I had a cold and needed decongestant and fresh OJ) and I promised to never commit said fashion crime again.

Solution: For those mornings when things are running a bit behind schedule (which is probably every morning with a one-year-old right?), or the times that you must quickly dash to the store, instead of venturing out in pj's and a tee shirt, slip on a pair of sleek yoga pants, sporty top, hoodie and stylish trainers and you are good to go! Instead of looking like you just fell out of bed you look like you are headed out for a bit of exercise! In fact, Pretty Mama swears by this ritual: the moment she awakes in the morning she immediately dresses in her yoga or walking togs. She then has the incentive to get a bit of exercise in before showering and dressing for the day, and if she has to drop off her son's lunchbox at school she isn't caught in her pj's and slippers!
Word of caution: don't get in the habit of spending the day as the Tracksuit Mom or the Workout Mom. This is all too easy to fall for. Get up, get going, get your exercise then get showered and dressed like the chic fashionista mamacita that you are! Your hubby will appreciate it and your kids won't be mortified when you show up at their school.

Now for the fun stuff! Shopping! With a one-year-old in tow, the days of Dry Clean Only are on hold for awhile. However, there are sooooo many other options than just jeans and tees! Jeans are fabulous and are perfect for everyday wear, as long as the cut and style is flattering to you. A straight leg style or slight bootcut is flattering to most body types. Jeans with a little stretch look great and are comfortable as well. A great pair of corduroy trousers, or a pair of khaki or twill trousers is also a good choice for everyday wear.

Instead of the basic tee shirt, choose something with a little more style. Layering is particularly effective; a lace-trimmed cami or ribbed tank under a fitted button-down shirt or v-neck sweater, topped by a classic blazer or jacket. This will go with jeans or dressier trousers. The whole look is a bit more grown-up than jeans and a tee, and the blazer just adds that perfect touch of class. You could also later a semi-sheer blouse over a tank, then top with a jacket, blazer or sweater. Finish off with a pair of chic flats and a great all-around handbag.

Another option with jeans, khakis or cords would be a great fitting long-sleeve tee, but top it with a stylish sweater or cropped jacket. You'll have comfort and style. Go with low heeled wedges to complete your fabu look.

If you are a dress girl (which I am!) there are soooooo many casual yet chic choices! I adore this season's gorgeous sweater dresses. Pair a comfy sweater dress with opaque tights and knee boots and you will be the most stylish mom at the park! Another option is to layer a sweater dress, tunic dress or other short dress over skinny jeans. Finish off with fab footwear and you are très chic!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Fab Fashions for a Bachelorette Party

Hi She She Me,
I am going to a Bachelorette party in a couple of weeks, and I have no idea what to wear. We are going out to dinner and then bar hopping in a very cool college town. I am not college age (neither is the bride), and I haven't been bar hopping or anywhere cool in a very long time. My first thought is to go sparkly shirt/jeans/high heels, but I think that look may be dated. I don't want to look like I am trying too hard (i.e. cocktail dress) either. Do you have any ideas for a twirty-girl matron-of-honor? Thanks, Carrie

Dearest Carrie,
What fun! A bachelorette party is always the perfect excuse to pull out your glad rags (or buy new ones!) and strut your stuff. I would suggest you stay away from the jeans/heels look mostly because, as you say, you will be in a cool college town where all of the cool college girls will be wearing just that - jeans and heels - and you don't want to look like you are regressing, or even worse, trying to pass. My advice is to stand out as the chic and sophisticated woman that you are!

You can still go with the glitz, but try pairing a sequin trimmed blouse, cami or tank with a great jacket and a pair of wide leg trousers. Finish off with heels, a sassy handbag for your girly goodies and unique jewelry. Stay away from anything preppy looking. Stick with chic and sophisticated.

A dress is also a good option, but steer away from the cocktail frocks and aim for a more minimalist look; a chic sweater dress or perhaps a figure skimming knit dress paired with platforms will have you looking very vogue without being over the top. Add a handbag with a little more feminine feel and bangles to finish. Another great look would be a stylish skirt with a little edge to it - perhaps leather or even a tweed with a little sparkle woven through - paired with tights and a fabulous pair of skyscrapers. The handbag can have a little more attitude here too, as well as the bling.