AKG

Posts Tagged ‘accessorize’

On Borrowing from the Boys, Guys, and Men

In On Details, On Menswear, On Muse-of-the-Month, On Style, On Styling for the Individual on April 26, 2012 at 1:30 am

First there was Coco Chanel and then there was the Le Smoking from YSL. Then came the la garconne dressing, and fast forward a few decades – the androgynous looks became popular. Now borrowing from the opposite gender’s wardrobe has become commonplace. The blazer, anorak, leather jacket, cargos, and boyfriend jeans – and now the boyfriend tee – pieces we have borrowed from the men – are all officially found in women stores now. There are tuxedo jackets for dresses – Glenn Close in Zac Posen at the Oscars. Menswear inspired womenswear is now seen on the street, on screen, and on the red carpet all the time now.

Borrowing from the Boys, Guys, and Men - As Seen on the Red Carpet

Borrowing from the Boys, Guys, and Men - As Seen on the Red Carpet

Take note, that menswear is never synonymous to baggy, no matter what it may seem like on the street around you. Take inspiration by mixing slouchy and feminine pieces with structured, tailored, and more angular pieces. It’s all in the balance. If you’re wearing a tailored jacket or trousers, make it your own by adding a sparkly, soft, or sensuous piece to the mix. Wear sky high heels and/or a statement necklace. Soft neutrals, jewel tones, or bright neons – they all look fabulous with black and nude alike – also consider the beautiful black & white combination with one other color in accessories.

Every book of style talks about the men’s shirt and how its cut looks so great when it finds its place on feminine curves. So many movies will showcase a man’s button down shirt on a woman. The key is finding an oversized shirt in a color (or white), print, or pattern that works for you – and defining your waist to ensure you don’t drown in it. Higher thread counts will look great thrown over your swimsuit at the beach.

Borrowing from the Boys, Guys, and Men - As Seen on the Street

Borrowing from the Boys, Guys, and Men - As Seen on the Street

The true borrowing lies in getting the details, and accessories right. I love men’s watches, especially those by Kenneth Cole and Michael Kors. There is something about the juxtaposition of a men’s large watch on a woman’s wrist that is very today. Sure, there is room for the delicate watch bracelets, but that isn’t for a contemporary look. Wear both, and see which you like on yourself more. This isn’t a costume. You should feel at home in what you’re wearing. Maybe try mixing it in with a bunch of bangles in similar tones or material. Work the watch into your look – make sure it doesn’t stand out like an awkward teenager.

Before investing in Michael Kors and Kenneth Cole, I borrowed my brother’s automatic Tommy Hilfiger watch for a while. Maybe borrowing from the boys may mean shopping in a closet without spending any money at the mall!

Waistcoats and vests. Black, colored, or denim – slouchy and/or tailored – these are always useful to throw on over a shirt or tshirt – especially in the summer when you don’t have to wear a jacket over the look.

Ties. Love love love ties. The ascot ties Miu Miu, featured in “Incorporating Androgynous Runway Fashion”, can be found in gorgeous bold prints to wear with printed or solid color shirts. Slim, bold colored ties look really great on women. I was working with a manager at Rugby in their operations, and she came wearing a white shirt with a slim navy tie and denim – the look was powerful. Themuseflash will someday make a post just about ties. But until then, just know that you can wear them pretty much anyway you want. And if you’re not into that, wear them as an interesting belt! (seriously)

Cufflinks are really interesting accessories. These are very personal pieces that I have to try on with what I intend to wear them with. For men and women both, cufflinks are usually best when they’re quirky, and very related to the wearer’s personality – they look best on simple french cuff shirt that suit or are tailored to your body.

Collection of Menswear Inspired Womenswear

Collection of Menswear Inspired Womenswear
^ So much love for these cufflinks ^

Oxford shoes are something I saw on Arshia’s pinterest. Whether in flats or heels, fabulous colors or neutrals, oxford inject ‘contemporary’ into your look. The upcoming post, we’ll devote entirely to shoes.

Until next time, make styles and pieces borrowed from the boys your own.

AKG

On Accessories for the Inverted Triangle (Part 5)

In On Fashion, On Muse-of-the-Month, On Style, On Styling for the Individual on March 30, 2012 at 3:55 am

A general rule of thumb for the petite inverted triangle? Anything huge will overwhelm your frame – mostly, stick to medium and small sized accessories. Larger handbags, like enormous prints, will tend to overwhelm your frame. Your investment pieces will be small to medium handbags if you’re petite, and large if you’re tall. Cross-body bags are an easy look and have a definite younger appeal – for an investment piece, I recommend a bag that is both a carry-able with handles, and has a strap that can either be attached or tucked in. Or a classic tote. I would suggest getting this bag in good quality leather, because it will last you. A unique bag with interesting details (whether they’re in the shape, handle, print, gathering, or closing mechanism) in a staple color will make for a great investment piece. Buy this in quality material.

When choosing jewelry, remember that bigger features demand bigger jewelry. Have smaller features? Make the jewelry smaller and finer. Neck pieces look best on the inverted triangle when they’re long and layered, especially if you have been gifted with an ample bust or have stronger shoulders than hips. Miss Parker has small to medium sized features, as do I. The chunky anything trend must be worn only after much consideration.

My wise muse recognizes this, of course: “I prefer slightly bigger earrings (not the BIG BIG ones – my face is too tiny to carry those off, but more medium sized). I love the pure silver pieces, as well as those with semi precious stones in them; these give me a colour to play with, to either match or contrast.” She’s absolutely right.

The cocktail ring is a trend that has a timeless quality, and can be an investment piece. These rings will add an artsy, unique flair to every hand they adorn. So choose wisely. Any rings, bracelets, and watches must be bought keeping in mind the size of your wrists and hands. A cocktail ring that covers three fingers of your already small hand makes not for an attractive style. That being said, I have a weakness and preference for men’s watches. Nina Garcia, and many other stylists share my love. I’m a huge huge fan of Michael Kors, of course. He has a divine way with them.

Inverted triangles, especially petite, should avoid piling on layers of thick garments one on top of the other. This only drags your frame downward and expands your width. Petite women have less space to work with. Unless it’s an exception to the rule, keeping your outfit simple and placing a few accessories strategically will help. A little will go a long way, both in size and number. Avoiding distraction will help you look lean. When you layer, and you must layer, try chic cardigans and sweaters - as seen in both, Forever 21 and J Crew.

Belts also, will work wonders, especially to cinch your waist and create/define the smallest part of you. Alternatively, for more oomph, wrapping the belt snugly will create a flare at the bottom of the garment and create curves. Belts wrapped around a loose top with dolman sleeves will also look very stylish.

You may also add a pair of bright colored shoes or anything eye-catching to fully draw the eye downward. Soumya Parker and I have a beautiful love affair with shoes – this love will get its own post, soon.

I left sunglasses last, because these are tricky. They are a piece that you must try and figure out according to your face shape. Don’t leave these out, however. They really will pull together your look on sunny days.

Sunglasses

Disclaimer: not mine, but a very interesting infographic about sunglasses. Find what style is best for you!

Sunglasses by Movie

Or find a style by your favorite movie. (Although I really don't recommend basing it entirely on that)

AKG

On the Keyword, “Incorporate”

In On Entertainment, On Fashion, On Style on January 18, 2012 at 1:18 am

All stylists wax poetic about “being true to oneself”. Until last year, I was so confused. What do they mean?!

Would there be some sort of instant connection I’d feel with certain clothing in my wardrobe?  I absolutely despise when friends or writers make negative comments/judgments about other people’s street style. It never made sense to me why people feel that they can declare someone’s choice of clothing (unless it’s an event) “wrong”. Doesn’t everyone have a different definition of ‘style’? Carrie Bradshaw with a belt across her bare belly is suddenly ‘stylish’, but the girl across the room wearing the green paisley peplum dress is “so off”? Geez.

Living in New York City and now in Boston, I’ve dressed only for myself. I wear what I want, when I want. If I look funny when I look back at myself at the end of the day (and believe me this still happens every once in a while), I just start over the next day. Live and learn, right? When I’m not feeling great, I try to brighten up with a piece I like. If not, I go with whatever brings me most comfort. When I’m feeling great, I reach for the vivid colors, funky accessories, and fun prints. Yesterday, I even bought beautiful printed bedding.

(It makes my room so happy. Blue Jamaica by Ralph Lauren – from Marshalls)

Developing style takes time. When you have time to plan for a day/an event, try something new. I’ll sometimes try grey tartan pants, or accessorize with un-AKG things, like yellow armadillo shoe earrings from Lady Gaga’s holiday workshop at Barney’s, New York (upcoming post about that). When there’s no time, however, like when something unexpected comes up, I quickly go to the pieces that I love. The pieces that I know will work.

To look fabulous, like you spent an hour when you really just spent 10 minutes, collect these pieces! It’ll take time, but bookmark in your mind what made you feel like a million bucks. Value what your innate style has to say, and tweak it based on what you learn. From fashion, or anything, incorporate what fits you and your personality – not the other way around. 

Trust me; this will go a long way. You may need to copy several styles before you find the ones that fit you best. I still make tear-sheets and print out pictures when I like what someone wore. But don’t follow blindly. The keyword here is to “incorporate”.

Maybe those stylists are on to something after all..

AKG

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