Thursday, October 31, 2013

Upcoming Client Work Excitement!

Upcoming Client Work Excitement!

First, Happy Halloween! Today is my birthday, too, and all-around one of my favorite days of the year. This year is my "golden birthday" since I'm turning 31 on the 31st! So far, my birthday has looked like this:

 I'm in the office today wearing all black as a little witch nod. 

 I brought back the "bling finger" with a little Halloween touch for this week. 

My office threw our monthly birthday party in style yesterday! They even got me a gluten free dairy free cupcake! So thoughtful!

On Friday we're heading up to Philly to see 8 of our best friends and eat at Distrito, which is an amazing Day of the Day-themed restaurant! But, in the morning, I'll be heading to visit a very special's a big old hint. It's such a dream come true!!!! Happy Birthday to me!!!

Remember, today is the last day of October so book any styling service with me today and name your own price. On Monday I'll be announcing new pricing so get it while it's hot!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Three Steps to Drastically Longer Lashes

Three Steps to Drastically Longer Lashes

I have a secret: I've been holding out on you. I have discovered a great, easy mascara trick. I'll let the pictures show you the difference.

Before: No mascara

 After the Three Steps

Ignoring for a moment how creepy it is to see my eyes that close, can you see the difference? I have no other makeup on in either of these shots. Here's what to do:

1. Apply your mascara as you normally do-one or two coats. If I'm spending money, I still love DiorShow. If I'm not, I love Maybelline Volum' Express The Falsies. Both waterproof always because I use a lot of under eye concealer, and the regular stuff runs or flakes.

2. Wait at least twenty minutes and then apply a second coat. The way I do this is by keeping a tube of the same mascara in the console of my car. I do my makeup and drive to work. In the parking lot, I apply my second coat. It makes a HUGE difference in the length of my lashes. It worked even better in the summer when the mascara was warm so feel free to hold the tube in front of your heater for a few seconds before applying the second coat.  You could keep a second tube at your desk if you take public transit or in a second room of your house if you work at home or are a stay-at-home mom.

3. Bask in the glory of your new, longer lashes.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Why You Need A Blazer Now

Why You Need A Blazer Now

I'm sometimes asked about what "essentials" all women need. Here's the thing: I don't really have a list. If I know about your lifestyle and the clothes that you like to wear, I can certainly come up with a list for you. Earlier this week I talked about some of my own basics (v-neck t-shirts, dark jeans, scarves), but I don't think those are the same for all women.

However, I think you need a blazer. Or a cropped jacket or whatever you want to call it: you need a structured top to put over things that isn't a cardigan. Here's what to look for and why.

Look for a Blazer with Well-defined Shoulders

Even pregnant, Girl with Curves knows that a blazer creates definition and shape for her body. Her shoulders look defined, and her arms look toned. Also-the curve on the edge is incredible and really shows off her shape. You'd be surprised how many blazers you can find with great details like this in the front or in the back. Those are the things that make a blazer un-boring!


 Choose a Blazer in a Neutral Color


There are some gorgeous leopard print blazers out there-don't buy them. I don't care that much about trends (more on that soon!); what I care about is something that looks great on your body and makes you feel like a badass. Wearing something recognizable and memorable over and over again (Hey, there goes Leopard Blazer Girl) will not likely help you feel like a badass. A neutral blazer goes with everything-from a t-shirt to stripes to polka dots or leather. Get yourself in one.

What Not to Wear will tell you that a two-button blazer is best for women with a larger bust. I say try one and two buttons on-see which makes you feel best. The blonde below doesn't seem to have particularly big boobs, but the two buttons look menswearish and, frankly, great. I have a one-button that's a bit longer than a classic blazer, and I love it. Just try a few one with some cute shirts from the store and see what you like.

 All via BodenUSA


Pick a Blazer with Fun Sleeves


Yes, this is a thing. I would rarely if ever buy a blazer whose sleeves I could not scrunch or roll up. Look for stripes or a contrasting color on the inside of the sleeves so that when you roll them up it looks intentional. Or, see if the sleeves will stay up if you scrunch them. The look reads as active, ready-to-go, and stylish all at once. How can you not love it?


 Consider a Blazer for Fancier Events


My mom has been ahead of the game on this one for years: be inspired by menswear for fancy events. Anytime where most of the women will be in dresses is a good opportunity to stand out from the crow a little in a great tuxedo jacket and pants. This one below from Garnet Hill looks just as good with a grown up t-shirt and casual pants as it would with a silk shirt and dressier pants. Since a good blazer is pricier than a cardigan, it's good to look for one that you can wear multiple ways, like this.

If I've convinced you, check out many outfits with blazer that I love here.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Pack a Bag with Easy Outfits for After Work

Pack a Bag with Easy Outfits for After Work

The Gap


I have a couple of clients who are nurses. What I've heard from them is that they often feel like they don't really get dressed-they wear scrubs at work, they don't usually change into "real clothes" after work, and on the weekend they wear the same casual clothes they wear at home after work.

I've got a few ideas for women who wear a uniform during the day-or even for those of us who wear more conservative clothes at work than we like to wear elsewhere.

Pack a Small Bag

The Gap

Don't worry-I'm not saying to pack a bag every day. Once a season, pack a few things in a bag and leave them somewhere at work. You'll be more able to spontaneously go somewhere fun after work than if you don't have anything to wear, you won't have the excuse of not having the right clothes, and you'll get more use out of the clothes that you do have. I do this with my yoga clothes-it's so much easier to make it to class when I have the clothes in my office and the mat in my car.

Fill the Bag with Basics and Small Touches

Your new office bag is not the place to put a new dress or something you wish you'd wear but you don't. We can talk about that later! This is the place for some basics, whatever those are for you. Pack things that you know will fit, can go over basically any underwear you might have on that day and work with a variety of shoes. For me, this would be a black t-shirt that's a little bit longer in the back than the front, a pair of dark jeans, and a cardigan or blazer that can be rolled or mushed without wrinkling. Once you wear it, be sure to replace it with the same basics or a new set for the next time you want them.

If you wear your scrubs after work, basics like a soft v-neck t-shirt could easily be tucked into your scrub pants in the front and left loose in the back. Of all places, I like the v-necks from American Eagle best (avoid the white, it's see-through). But, if you're looking to step it up a notch, consider a more grown-up alternative to a t-shirt. Like one of these! They're just as easy to carry and wear as a t-shirt, but they're more fun.

On sale at BodenUSA
On sale at BodenUSA

Add a pair of hoops and a denim or leather moto jacket and you're ready to go meet friends.

On sale at BodenUSA


With the PJ trend going on now, your scrubs won't look so out of place anymore. If you are able to choose your own scrubs, you might consider something neutral that won't look so much like scrubs after hours.

For the small touches, I mean to include little accessories that you won't miss if you take them out of your rotation and put them into your office bag. Think things like basic hoop earrings or an interesting pair that make you feel "dressed up." Another way to go is a "statement necklace"-something that dresses up even a basic t-shirt (see above).

On sale at BodenUSA

No matter where you live, you can always include a great scarf (heavy or light) to be worn with the basics.

Via Etsy

Friday, October 25, 2013

Six New Halloween Costumes for Women Who Don't Want to be Naked

Six New Halloween Costumes for Women Who Don't Want to be Naked

A few weeks ago, my post on Halloween Costumes for Women Who Don't Want to be Naked became hugely popular. I know that this weekend lots of you are looking for costumes for the coming week, and I wanted to put in a plug for shopping your own closet for costume ideas. All of these ideas come from ModCloth's inventory, but I encourage you to take a look at your own closet for inspiration. Or, you could always buy something new in the name of a costume and wear it again later! In my mind, that's better than purchasing something you'll only wear once.

What Does a Fox Say?

For the social media maven, this hat is a simple nod to the viral video. You could fox up the rest of your outfit, too, but I like the regular clothes with this hat. It's subtle.

Ugly Sweater Party

Add some shiny pants, decorative earrings, a drink in your hand (bonus points for something that looks like egg nog!), and a candy cane tucked into your hair. Plus, you can wear it again to an actual ugly sweater party in a few months. Done.

Classic Tootsie Roll Commercial

I recommend this one for the single ladies because of the easy layup to the "how many licks" line that men are sure to take. Wear it over a white button-down and jeans with cowboy boots.

Little Red Riding Hood

There's nothing wrong with this classic. Might be nice for a couples costume where a friend or partner goes as a wolf. Basket not included.

Bjork's Swan Costume

Take it back to 2001 (!!) with Bjork's infamous swan costume reinterpreted. Order a size up and wear it with just tights or pair it with a tulle skirt for her frilly effect.

Grim Reaper

This is a good look for a work party, a concert, or another low-key event this time of year. Add some leather leggings and stud accessories and you're good to go. 

Happy Costuming!

All items from ModCloth. This is not a sponsored post, although they are a sponsor. Links available here.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Why do we wear clothes we don’t love?

I was very honored to be asked over to Love Always Hannah today to talk about what motivates me to work with women to help us step into our power. Hannah is an inspiration, and I consider her blog to be a ministry for the woman's soul. Here's a preview, read the rest here.

Why do we wear clothes we don’t love?

We hold on to clothes that we don’t love the way we feel in because we’re afraid that we’re the problem-not the clothes.  We’re afraid that there isn’t a better option-that we won’t feel beautiful in anything. So instead of getting rid of things that don’t fit, don’t flatter, and don’t inspire, we hold on to them. What if we can’t find anything better, we think, and we don’t have anything? What if we are just left with what we perceive as the reality-that we are the problem, not our clothes. We think of it as our bodies not being the right shape or size instead of the clothes not being the right shape or size for our bodies...Read more.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Glasses Inspiration

Glasses Inspiration


I'm working with a client this month who wears amazing glasses, and it's got me really excited about styling with glasses. I love how they frame the face, and I especially love a darker set! When I was little, I used to want glasses (and braces) more than anything. When my eyes hurt after my first computer classes and I had to go to get them checked, I was thrilled. Glasses! But it wasn't meant to be for me then. Even now that I have glasses (for a twitchy law school-induced astigmatism eye), I don't often wear them. Hmmm...might need to remedy that.

I'm excited to show you some of what we're working on together once our session is over. Here's what she booked me for during Personal Pricing in October:
One virtual session where I'll check out her clothes and set her up with TONS of new outfits to wear for her everyday life-as well as an unusual, gorgeous outfit for the wedding weekend she has coming up!

I also typically throw in a Pinterest inspiration board for clients and send them deals on clothes that I find in the weeks following our time together at no charge.
P.S. I don't ask for personal pricing upfront. Instead, clients send me a check within a week for whatever amount you've decided on. But, this client let me know that she has $25 to spend. Typically, virtual sessions are 1.5 hours, but we've booked two hours to include time for the "special event" styling.
So for $25, she'll get about 2 hours with me-and what clients have described as "a whole new way of looking at the clothes I already have!" In other words, "It's like shopping  without spending all the time and money!"


I loved what Love Always Hannah had to say about glasses, didn't you? Also, The Girls With Glasses had a cute, light message for little girls with glasses.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Weekly Roundup: for the love of stripes

Weekly Roundup: for the love of stripes

All images via

How are you wearing stripes today, I wonder? If you'd like to be featured on my blog, email me a picture of yourself! Startclosein at

Monday, October 21, 2013

Would You Wear Faux Leather?

Would You Wear Faux Leather?

I'm funny about certain things. Like faux leather. I have some pants that are mostly coated jeans but have a faux leather look to them, and I must have liked how they looked in the store, but until two weekends ago, I hadn't worn them outside the house. Wait, let me clarify that: this time around I hadn't worn them outside of the house. Last time that faux leather was in style a few years ago, I wore them a lot (think "liquid leggings"), which is probably why I was feeling like I was too old to wear them this time. Well, I bit the bullet! I put them on with a cozy, longish sweater on top and headed to the mall in the middle of a torrential downpour.

A funny thing happened-I meant to change out of my rain boots after bringing the dogs out and before getting in my car, but I arrived at the mall with the boots still on. Then I realized: they're just PANTS! Like any other pants! Somehow the strange pairing with my boots made me feel more comfortable about them. Here is me realizing that they're OK!

And, since they're just pants, like any others, I could do things that I do with pants, like roll them up at the ankle, pair them with cozy fisherman sweaters, and take gratuitous selfies in the Gap changing room!

My thought is this: maybe wear something this week that kind of scares you or has you feeling like you're not as _______ as you were before/would like to be/could be. Chances are, you're gonna love it.

And, of course, I'd love to see what comes out of this experiment!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Weekend Deal to Make Gift-Buying Easier

Check Out This Weekend Deal to Make Gift-Buying Easier!

Check out this great deal from Baby Bump Bundle. They're offering a deal where you spend $40 and it gets you $60 toward any Baby Bump Bundle. They have gift boxes for nursing moms and awesome baby shower gift boxes for newborns, too! The deal is this weekend (3 days) only, and I think the best part is that you can use the voucher toward a gift anytime between now and April 15, 2014 so if you have any friends who are pregnant or might get pregnant then this could come in handy!

Don't miss my fall and winter maternity finds-also great for gifts!

Oh-and Baby Bump Bundle isn't a sponsor; I just think it's a great idea since I attend a lot of showers and have lots of pregnant friends and coworkers!

Playing Virtual Dress Up on Etsy

Playing Virtual Dress Up on Etsy

Sometimes I search on Etsy as though I were shopping for a different version of myself. It's better than window shopping; it's like virtual dress up! I've gotten to the point of shopping online for myself (and others) very easily because I have a good sense of what will work-or not-on different bodies. This is the opposite of that. This dress up is about imagining if I wore a totally different style and were shopping for that version of myself. This is for a woman who works in a studio cooperative and rides her bike there-even in a very long skirt.

I recently found an inspiring Etsy shop where my alter ego would absolutely shop. It's YL1dress.
The Chinese designer works from scratch to design these incredible clothes, and I just love them. 


OK, this bottom one I might actually wear in my current iteration. I love how the designer behind this particular shop styled this coat with the blue boots and quirky little gloves.

Don't you love her style? And, of course I want to know: where do you go to "play dress up?"

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Shop Your Closet: Wearing Stripes Like It's Your Job

Shop Your Closet: Wearing Stripes Like It's Your Job (or to your job...)

Photo thanks to Hannah
Recently, Hannah from Love Always Hannah recruited me to help her meet her goal of no shopping for six months. She's having a lot of fun with this challenge partly because we decided to pair up to shop her closet. She's already got some amazing clothing, and we're having fun figuring out ways to stretch her comfort zone around what she can wear and how!

We had a Virtual Closet Consultation over video recently, and we decided to celebrate our shared love of stripes. In college, my best friend dressed by theme (purple and pink for a week, for example), and I've often wondered if anyone would notice if I wore just stripes every day for a week-or a month! My closet could certainly handle it; I might need my own stripe shopping intervention!

A few of my cool weather stripes...
Ahem...Let's get back to Hannah! Here's what she says:

"Of course, stripes can be a tricky thing to incorporate into your wardrobe, but I really believe that anyone can rock them.  Never say never!  Just try until you find a way that works for you.  Ultimately, it’s really about the confidence that you wear them with.  If you feel good, you will look good.  So wear what you love! It’s really as simple as that."
I think of stripes as being an easy way to ease into changing up your usual clothing routine because they instantly add visual interest and play well with colors, patterns, and monochrome. Here are what I think of as the "levels" of stripes.

Level One: Match Stripes and Colors


If you don't often wear patterns, consider starting with stripes. They're flattering, they're classic (and often "on trend," too!), and they play well with colors and patterns. An easy way to start to wear stripes is by picking a stripe and adding a color to it, preferably a bright color. If you have something bright that you don't often wear, try matching it up with a stripe to see if that helps you wear the colored item more often. With the pink sweater above, I picked up on the pink in the necklace and also the fact that the necklace's pattern sort of looks striped.

I think stripes instantly up the cool factor of an outfit. For example, this skirt is gorgeous, and with black it's a solid look. However, a little striped blazer or a striped shirt would kick this outfit up a notch!


The color could be on your lips (like the top picture of Hannah), on your body (above), or even on your feet! This is a great way to keep wearing summery shoes later into the fall season.


This is one way that I get myself to wear more color, actually, since I've long been devoted to black and its cousin, gray. I can appease the part of me that wants to wear black and white with the stripes but shake things up by adding a color in there. Here are a few stripes + color outfits that I put together for myself.


 Level Two: Pair Stripes with Pattern

Another level of commitment up from stripes with color is stripes paired with another pattern. Here, I put Hannah in a striped cardigan with a polka-dotted top. She also gets points because the top is a color! This is a versatile outfit because Hannah could easily swap out the maxi skirt for pants or a shorter skirt and tights when the weather cools down, and she could also substitute another patterned shirt for the pink a different day. I think she looks radiant. Check out more of the outfits we put together here!

Photo thanks to Hannah

Photo thanks to Hannah

Stripes and pattern (crosses and dots!) also looked great on Erika when re-did her closet, and I eased her into embracing three patterns all at once by keeping them all black and white. Even the pearls echoed the dots on the polka-dotted scarf that became a belt.

Personally, I don't wear a lot of florals, but I love pairing stripes with polka dots, graphic lettering, and tribal prints. However, if you've got floral prints in your closet, this is a great way to carry them into fall and winter! Anthro helped me out with this shirt that had polka dots on the back, stripes on the front, and a floral pocket. Here's a stripey selfie from this summer-I need to find a printed pant to replace those shorts!

(Great tees on sale here and here. Order up a size-Anthropologie shirts shrink a lot in the dryer).
I would love these pants with a striped top!

Level Three: Wear Multiple Stripes

Getting a little more daring brings you to wearing multiple stripes. I know, some of you already think that wearing stripes with pattern looks good in theory but isn't for you. But bear with me. If wearing stripes ups the cool factor, wearing more than one set absolutely does! For example, my Breton stripe here goes well with anything from basic black to colored pants, but doesn't adding a simple second stripe make it look that much better?

I think so! It helps the pants to relate to the color of the scarf and also the stripes.

As you can see above, a good way to ease into this look is to choose items with stripes in the same color family, like black and white stripes worn a few different ways or white and gray stripes with gray and a color stripes. The base of the outfit is monochromatic, but the stripes add visual interest.

Be sure to pop over to check out the outfits I styled for Hannah! And feel free to send me your recent striped outfits! I know you've got 'em. Ok, just one last one of Hannah in monochromatic with stripes. She added the accessories herself because she's creative like that! Love it.

Hannah's pic

Find more stripey goodness on my Pinterest board and click here for more shop your closet inspiration.

P.S. Do you love this as much as I do? Hannah-let's throw a stripe party!

Linking up to Life of the Party today!