01 March 2010

Back in Black

black and red outfit: black denim pencil skirt, cardigan, owl henley, boots, striped socks, tights, scarf, onyx brooch
another Fabulous Husband photo
Black cardigan: Ann Taylor Loft
Henley with little owl pattern and heart-shaped buttons: No Boundaries, thrifted
Woven belt: Ann Taylor Loft
Black denim pencil skirt: Ann Taylor Loft
Tights and black-and-red stripey socks: depths of the drawer
Scarf: Hot Topic
Boots: John Fluevog "Inge"
Woven leather cuff bracelet: Urban Outfitters (?)
Onyx brooch: estate sale

The outfits I've posted so far have been vividly colored, which is pretty atypical for me. This is more my usual speed: black, black, and more black, with little accents of color.

As for the preponderance of Ann Taylor Loft items, I spent a year working there, and as a result built up quite the wardrobe of pieces from the store. I'm glad I'm not working retail fashion any more, and I've become unhappy with the chain's stylistic decisions in the subsequent years, but I learned valuable lessons that year about style, fashion, wardrobe-building, and dressing a wide variety of body types. The thing I miss most about it was helping my customers find smashing outfits for their body types and lifestyles.

One thing that will become quite obvious is that I have a deep, abiding fondness - verging, some might say, on an addiction - for John Fluevog shoes. There are several reasons for that: I love the combination of funky style and comfort - I have several pairs of Fluevog heels, these 3" babies included, that are just as comfy and walkable as a pair of sneakers; the company has a commitment to ethical production and offers quite a few ecologically conscious styles; they stand behind their products fully; and the salespeople are the sweetest,  friendliest, most attentive, and most knowledgeable retail staff I have ever encountered, bar none. Even if you buy online, you'll get a call from someone at a Fluevog store to discuss fit and shipping.

I'm also playing along with the academichics' Fashion 101: Cardigans unit. I own a few cardigans, but I don't really think of them as a wardrobe basic. However, I'm taking this as a style assignment (Me? Miss structured curricula much? Nah!), so expect to see quite a few of them this week as I try to fit the few I have into a daily rotation! My plans for this week include a photo shoot with the incredibly talented Jen Kiaba, a thrifting expedition, and a lunch meeting, so I've got a variety of situations for which to dress.

Do you have a default style - a certain look or combination you know you can always count on? When do you stick to it, and when do you experiment? What about favorite brands - do you have a go-to manufacturer? Are there certain items you're brand-loyal regarding, and others not?

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