Date Night Dress Ideas

Picking out an outfit for a date night can be especially frustrating.  Solving the “what should I wear?” crisis is never fun, but it can certainly be a bit easier.  Consider a few of these great show stopper outfits as possible solutions to the date night dress dilemma.

First up is the Burca dress by Velvet by Graham and Spencer.  This dress features a great boat neckline and added details like a big silver zipper in back.  The dress is also tapered so it fits tighter at the waist than around the bustline.  The modern look is perfect for that date night and the slinky rayon fabric is to die for.  Wearing this over leggings as a tunic for a more casual look or with high boots gives you multiple options to help make this dress even more versatile.  Ideal date night occasions for this dress include: dinner at your favorite fancy restaurant, or art gallery or museum event.

Next up consider the Dita V Neck Ruffle Dress by designer Ella Moss.  This great dress has a vintage style that always reminds us of something you’d see on the show Mad Men.  With ruffles accenting the deep v neck line and the dress flares at the waist.  Of course we love the vintage style polka dot pattern too.  A great dress for a number of occasions which will help make sure you get your money’s worth out of this dress.  Ideal date night occasions for this dress include:  the theatre, weddings and just about any other party.

Next consider the Modal Jersey Scoop Neck Dress by Splendid.  This dress is elegant and simple with the ruffles around the neckline and the racerback detail in back.  With simple lines and a classic look, this dress is versatile and elegant.  As its name denotes it is made with modal jersey fabric which is the perfect blend of luxurious and comfortable.  It is machine washable, yet so soft to the touch that you really hate to take it off.  Ideal date night occasions for this dress include:  summer barbeque and dinner and a movie.

Finally, consider another statement dress with the Doreen Cut Out Dress by Velvet by Graham and Spencer.  This dress in a beautiful purple color called Gazelle.  Featuring cutouts in the sleeves at the base of the shoulders, this dress has a surprising modernity that we adore.  Part sleeves of Velvet’s Gauzy Whisper collection, this dress features a lightweight cotton, it is lined and gives you a perfect classy dress with a slight twist or edge.  We love the look of this dress again with high boots in a contrasting grey or other bold color and of course this dress looks elegant in your favorite pair of statement heels.  Ideal date night occasions for this dress include: the theatre, dinner out, art gallery and any party /event.

In short, you can find a variety of great dresses that can help make the date night dress dilemma a little bit easier.  Hopefully these are a few ideas that will help give you ideas for your own wardrobe and help give you ideas of some of the best places to wear these dresses on your next date night.

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Designer Cardigans

Designer cardigans are the perfect piece to wear this time of year.  Cardigans have come a long way from the puffy think styles of the 80s and now you find the modern versions include lighter weight fabrics, distinctive buttons or no buttons, no shoulder pads, and additional trim or details like pockets.   Some of our favorite designer cardigans have even transformed into short sleeve versions that are perfect for layering over long sleeve tees or work great over short sleeve tops in warmer weather.

Consider the Cotton Bamboo Cardigan by Splendid.  This cardigan made from 70% cotton and 30% bamboo features short loose sleeves, hints of white around the trim in front and as accent in the back and pockets.  Without buttons, this cardigan gives a loose look that helps it look slightly less formal, but the style itself gives it a modern edge.  The Cotton Bamboo Cardigan features a long length that falls well below the hips.

Another contemporary cardigan style by designer Velvet by Graham and Spencer is the Eloise Winter Slub Long Pocket Cardigan.  This long sleeve flared cardigan is another one of our favorites.  Part of Velvet’s Winter Slub collection that is so popular this season the Eloise cardigan is a great long cardigan option.  You’ll love the long length that works so well with leggings or boots.  The loose, open look of the cardigan which adds to the versatility of the cardigan gives you a variety of alternative ways to wear and accessorize it. Our model wears it with an adorable scarf and scoop neck top and jeans.  Of course we can’t forget to mention the pockets in front too which give it an added element of distinction compared to other cardigans this season. The winter slub fabric is the perfect blend of texture giving the fabric variation which adds to the uniqueness.

One of everyone’s favorite designers Ella Moss features the Kylie Bust Tie Cardigan.  This cardigan is a great dressy piece.  Made with lightweight cotton knit which gives this top a sophisticated, sheer look.  With a tie at the bust line you can adjust the fit and look of this cardigan to suit any occasion.  We love wearing this with a tank in warm weather and then with a long sleeve top in colder weather adding to its usefulness.  The empire waist looks very flattering as it is loose enough and sheer enough to ensure that no one looks frumpy.  Of course, Ella Moss is a great sophisticated designer that is known for designing modern, yet wearable designs.

As you can see there are a variety of different designs and options to consider when shopping for Designer Cardigans and these are only the tip of the iceberg so to speak.  You can find other great cardigan designs from some of our favorite sweater designers including, Laurie B., Splendid and Ella Moss.  As the weather warms up, some of the lighter weight wraps and cardigans from designers such as Velvet by Graham and Spencer or Sweet Pea will be great pieces to have on hand.

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Fashion of 2010

Just because 2010 is now in the rear view mirror, doesn’t mean that many of the same fashion trends will carry on into 2011.  Today we want to focus on some of those continued trends because we know that sometimes you need to see that a trend has staying power and isn’t a fad in order to start to incorporate it into your wardrobe.

Trend to stay number one is leggings.  As spring rolls around the corner, you will want to have a pair of cropped leggings in your closet.  Much like capris, this trend has staying power and will likely be around for many seasons to come.  We’ve done prior posts discussing just leggings and what basics to have in your closet, but we suggest having a good basic black long legging and a basic black cropped legging as a starting point.  Then we would suggest adding in the right complement colors depending on your wardrobe such as browns, blues and greys.  We can’t say enough about the long legging in the cooler weather as it is such a great piece to wear with boots.  The cropped legging is also the perfect accent for warmer weather and works really well with ballet flats and long tunic length tops.

The tunic length or loose fitting top is trend number two.  You will see this trend in many spring fashions this season.  You have a variety of options for such tops including the wide boatneck sweatshirt top that narrows at the waist, the long and fitted top which can range from a v neck to a cardigan and the belted or drawstring waist top as a few examples.  This spring, for example, you will see lots of patterned peasant blouses with ties at the waist that is a continuation of elements of the ruffled loose boatneck top of seasons past.

Another trend that will be around for seasons to come are the short mid-thigh dresses that have become so popular.  Whether you like to accessorize these dresses with leggings or wear them with high boots, this dress trend has staying power.  These great dresses come in a variety of styles and include a variety of elements including ruffles, zippers, empire waists and much more.  One of our favorites is the Burca dress by Velvet by Graham and Spencer which features a black wide neckline with the body of the top that gradually narrows to the waist with a tighter fit. Complete with a chunky zipper in back for added detail, this dress is a total statement piece.  It has short sleeves so it really does work for several seasons.

In short, the dawning of a new decade doesn’t mean the end of a fashion era.  You will still see many fashion trends from 2010 continued in 2011. For many of you who may like to adopt a bit of a wait and see approach to shopping for trends, we hope that you will be able to get in on the trend before it is too late.

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Hot Spring Clothes

Spring is right around the corner and finding hot spring clothes is a must for every fashionista.  Spring fashions are already making a debut in stores now and when you are shopping for spring fashion you will want to make sure you are on the lookout for a few key pieces that you will want to either dust off or add into your spring wardrobe.

Maxi Dresses – the trend continues this spring with a variety of different styles of maxi dresses.  You will see the strapless, halter top, racerback or standard necklines in those ankle length maxi dresses.  This style trend can also be fashionable in patterns or in solids.  Floral patterns are always great for spring and this season you will find lots of bright colors and even retro patterns like tie dyes.  Of course for spring you will also want to have a few cropped cardigans or wraps to go with those maxi dresses with the cooler temperatures.  We love the look of rugged cargo jackets and maxi dresses.

Leggings – Another must have for spring weather are cropped leggings.  Leggings are the must have for shorter dresses or the longer tunic length tops.  We find so many tunic length tops that are popular for spring work perfectly with leggings.  We’ve discussed how to shop for leggings and the pros and cons of different lengths and what colors you should start with when investing in leggings, but in short we suggest that you invest in basic colors like black, grey and browns and then branch out into splurge colors depending on what suits your wardrobe.

Tank Tops and Cardigans – If you are like us by the time spring rolls around we are so tired of long sleeves and turtlenecks that we are dying to get back into wearing some of our favorite tanks.  Of course most spring weather isn’t warm enough to wear tanks by themselves, but we like to wear our tanks with cardigans.  You’ll see lots of scarves and great neckline accessories to complement the different necklines.  Spring fashion trends include mixed lengths and tanks and cardigans are a great way to play off of the different hemlines.  As an example, we love Velvet’s long Kelisha Tank and love wearing that with the cropped Sartee drape cardigan.  This look for us creates a modern feminine look that we love to see this spring.

Skirts – These are classic pieces for spring, summer and fall and this spring we love the simple, yet elegant pencil skirt.  I have a friend who I always admired her fashion style and she would always wear these stretchy pencil skirts that she would wear just about anywhere with practically any top and shoes.  It always looked so comfortable and so fashionable and feminine.  Finding that perfect stretchy pencil skirt is a great addition to any spring wardrobe.  We love the Sintia pencil skirt by Velvet because it has just enough stretch and cling.

Of course these are just a few of our highlights for spring fashion this season.   You will want to incorporate any and all of these great trends in your spring wardrobe as they suit your own style.  If you’re trying to save a little money we suggest picking your favorite of these spring fashion trends and then add others over time.  Don’t forget, that above all you will want to make sure that whatever spring fashion you wear you will want to make sure that you are true to your own individual style.

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Dressing with Layers

Layers are everywhere this season and especially in colder temperatures layers are a great way to help keep you warm while still looking stylish.  You can create that layered look in a variety of ways, but there are certainly a few that stand out as our favorites at Vintage Fringe.

You can’t talk about dressing with layers without discussing wraps and cardigans.  They truly are such versatile pieces that help to bridge the gap between warm and cold weather practically all year round.  You can find wraps in all sorts of fabrics depending on how heavy you want them, but we suggest wearing a good cotton or jersey wrap that you can throw in a bag to have with you as the perfect option on a cold evening.  These wraps can also be perfect for traveling if you need something light weight to carry on a plane or in your luggage.  Wraps can be found in just about every color so there really is no excuse for not having at least one.  Currently you’ll see them with flared or wide open fronts as a popular look.  You’ll see wraps in cropped lengths which are great accents for dresses or other outfits.  We also love long wraps to pair with leggings and boots which seem to be my go to look for the winter this year.

Another essential piece when dressing with layers are long sleeve shirts.  Whether you like long sleeve tops or turtlenecks these are essential pieces if you are looking to layer up.  Long sleeve tops are perfect if you are looking to wear them under wraps, cardigans or even as is so popular under other short sleeve tops.  Turtlenecks are some of our favorite pieces to wear under certain sweaters and if you’ve seen the long sweater cardigans turtlenecks can be great basics to layer underneath.  At Vintage Fringe we have a variety of different styles of turtlenecks from solid colors to turtlenecks that are truly statement pieces, but in any case you shouldn’t overlook these basic long sleeve tops when you are looking to find ways to layer up in colder weather.

Finally another great piece to layer with are light jackets.   Our favorite jackets for layering include lightweight fleece or other jersey cotton.  Consider the Cropped Double Breasted Jacket by Zooey which is a great lightweight jersey cotton that is light enough to wear in warmer weather and also warm enough for fall weather.  We even wear it as a blazer during colder weather giving it added versatility.

Dressing with layers is really so much about function and versatility and giving you options depending on the weather, but despite all of these great reasons for layers you don’t have to sacrifice style.   You can easily find a variety of tops, wraps and jackets that will help you create your own individual style with a few great pieces that really help give your wardrobe a variety of options in addition to helping you fit in with the latest trends.

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New Fashion Trends for 2011

When you are shopping this year you will want to be mindful of the latest new fashion trends for 2011 and be on the lookout for great ways to incorporate them into your wardrobe and individual style.  Today we’re going to highlight a new trend in style of tops, trends in lengths and trends in color and patterns.

As for style trends for tops you will see looser fits.  Lots of wide, long tops ranging from the retro Flashdance inspired baggy sweatshirt top that you can rock with leggings or jeans or jeggings as they will still be popular.  You will see tops that are tunic length and many that are wider in the waist and shoulders giving you a distinctive look from the short fitted tops of seasons past.  You will also find peasant blouses back in full steam this year.  Frilly lightweight, sheer fabrics with solid colors or patterns with ruffles and/or ties at the waist will be big this upcoming season.

Another trend that you will continue to see this season is the popularity of cropped jackets.  This trend is working its way into sweaters with lots of cropped sweaters and cardigans for your more casual attire.   Cropped jackets or blazers adorned with epaulets, buttons, zippers and many more accent details will be all the rage this season.  You’ll see the magazines showcase these jackets with long tops underneath and often over leggings or skinny jeans.  Of course, you will want to work these into your wardrobe as you like to fit your own individual style, but this short cropped length is a big trend this season.

In 2011 you are sure to see lots of great patterns ranging from python prints or floral patterns all the way to more subtle infusions of tie dye.  You’ll most definitely want to look for great tops with the patterns that suit your individual style.   This season bright colors will be popular. Be on the lookout for coral colors, blues and purples.  You will also see lots of clothing utilizing shimmer and shine with the use of fabrics instead of more matte fabrics and colors.  Satins, sequins and sheer are our rule of thumb this season.  Patterns will range from distinctive animal prints like python to bold floral patterns, lots of elements of tie dye patterns and of course stripes in a host of great fabrics and distinctive style tops.

Of course how you choose to utilize these trends is completely up to you, but we think you’ll find having a piece or two that fit these trends will help spruce up your wardrobe for 2011.  Also don’t think that you will have to spend a small fortune on these fashion trends.  In keeping with the prior year trends you’ll see these trends implemented in the high end lines as well as in the more economical lines so it won’t simply be a trend you see on the runway.   We recommend investing in a few great pieces with these trends that you can wear for years to come.

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Are Leggings Still in Style?

If you are wondering if leggings are still in style the short answer is definitely yes.  You don’t have to look much further than the latest trends this past season including Leggings and the popularity of tunic length tops that pair so well with leggings.  Leggings are still in full swing and many people who previously sat on the sidelines with leggings wondering if they were a fad are finally embracing the benefits of incorporating leggings into their wardrobes.   If you’re still looking for great types of leggings or even just great ideas of how to incorporate leggings into your wardrobe today we wanted to give you a few great ideas of things you should consider when you are shopping for leggings.

First, you need to decide what your budget is.  If you are someone who still thinks that leggings are just a flash fad then you may be thinking that you’re not sure how much staying power they may have as a fashion trend.  Accordingly, you may only want to invest in leggings on the more economical side or low end to see if they are really that great or if you even like them.  We’re not going to say you can’t do this and it isn’t such a bad idea, but we would strongly encourage you to consider that you do generally get what you pay for so in our experience those leggings don’t last as long or fit as well.  We would encourage you to try at least 1 pair of good leggings that are in the $50 price range so that you can experience what good quality leggings are like to wear.  We are pretty sure that you will see that there is a difference and the advantages of the mid-range $50 pair of leggings are so worth it.

Next, you will want to decide on length.  You find a variety of lengths, but they primarily fall into the camp of long (roughly ) or short (mid-knee or higher).  Honestly, the main determinant here is your preference.  The long length works so well with things like boots or in colder weather when you don’t want that much skin exposed.  The shorter length works great with things like dresses or shorter tunic length tops.  The shorter length is more popular for warmer weather and looks adorable with sandals and ballet flats.   At Vintage Fringe we love to wear leggings made by designer Velvet by Graham and Spencer.  Their leggings are great quality and are on the reasonable end of price and can generally be found at retailers between $50-65.  We love their Swoozie leggings for the longer length or the Ritzy leggings for the shorter length.  Both are made of great quality jersey cotton and fit extremely well.  The waist band s properly sewn and they are thick enough fabrics that they don’t run or snag easily.  The Ritzy legging is a slightly thinner fabric made from Velvet’s Gauzy Whisper fabric, but is still thick enough to be good quality.

Finally, the final decision can sometimes be the hardest—what color?  Here you have to take into account your own preferences and existing wardrobe, but consider a few pointers as you decide on colors.  When you are starting to incorporate a piece into your wardrobe it is always a good idea to think about it in terms of basics.  Any good stylist will tell you that you always start basic and work your way into splurge colors or pieces over time.  So with that in mind you will want to start with basic black.  You really need at least one pair of basic black if not a couple because you can make black work with just about anything.  Next I would add in a good grey or brown color depending on whether you primarily wear cool or warm colors.  Once you have a few of these colors in your closet then you can add in accent colors like blues, reds or other perk colors.

As you can see these are our rules of the road when shopping for leggings.  You will find that getting the right pair of leggings can make all the difference when you try to add it into your wardrobe.  Hopefully these suggestions have helped to give you a few good ideas for how you can find the right pair of leggings for your budget, wardrobe and individual style.

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Long Sleeve Cardigans

It is cold weather time which means it is sweater time and this season cardigans have really become must haves for every wardrobe.  Cardigans give you so many styling options such as the flared look of the flowing cardigan or the tighter fitted cardigan.  They also come with long sleeves or short sleeves although predominantly long sleeves.  The short sleeve cardigan is a more modern look that is finding its way into more fashion styles and is great for layering, but the long sleeve cardigan will never go out of style.  Of course, today’s cardigans are nothing like the bulky cardigans of the 80s with lots of shoulder pads and that classic boxy look.   This season you’ll find everyone wearing a mix of loose and tight fitted cardigans, cropped and long, in basic colors or with patterns or embellishments.  Here are a few great examples of distinctive cardigan styles:

A modern long sleeve cardigan look by Velvet by Graham and Spencer the Eloise Winter Slub Long Pocket Cardigan has quickly become one of our favorites.  Part of Velvet’s Winter Slub collection that is so popular this season the Eloise cardigan is a great long cardigan option.  We love the long length that works so well with leggings or boots this fall/winter season.  The loose, open look of the cardigan which adds to the versatility of the cardigan gives you a variety of alternative ways to wear and accessorize it. Our model wears it with an adorable scarf and scoop neck top and jeans.  Don’t forget to notice the pockets in front too which give it an added element of distinction compared to other cardigans this season. The winter slub fabric is a great blend of texture as the fabric has variation which adds to the uniqueness.  Of course we also love the deep purple color called Damask.

The ultimate feminine long sleeve cardigan is the Heart Button Cardigan by designer Joy Joy.  This lightweight, long sleeve cardigan really does feature amazing feminine details such as bows on the heart shaped buttons down the front of the cardigan; another heart on the lapel made of a variety of patterned fabric covered buttons for an added touch of contrast; and gathered puff sleeves on the shoulders.  This knit fabric of this cardigan is light enough that it works really well in fall, spring or even summer.  We love wearing this cardi over our favorite summer sundress.

A modern cropped long sleeve cardigan is also by designer Velvet by Graham and Spencer and that is the Paola Drape Cardigan.  Featuring long sleeves and a long flowing drape in front and a cropped length in back, this cardigan is a popular style this season.   An added distinction is the great metallic stripe fabric which features a contrasting heather grey and a sheer metallic stripe that allows you to make it dressy or casual depending on how you accessorize it.  It is so stylish and classy that you really can’t go wrong when wearing it.

We think you’ll agree that these cardigans are must haves this season and you will want a variety of long sleeves cardigans with different lengths and looks to work with your boots and leggings that will be part of all the best fashion trends this season.

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Scoop Neck Top

The scoop neck top has really become a wardrobe staple that you end up trying to stock up on in multiple colors. Scoop necklines have of course been around forever, but it seems like great scoop necklines are incorporated in a lot of wonderful style tops and sweaters featuring both long and short sleeves.  A great look is even layering scoop neck tops over tanks or other contrasting necklines to add color and additional style elements to your look.  Consider a few great pieces that feature scoop neck lines and a variety of distinctive styles so that when you add this great neckline to your wardrobe you don’t’ have to wear the exact same shirt in another color.

The designer Stacy Frati features a variety of Scoop Necklines in her Sweet Pea Clothing collection and here are a few great examples of unique patterns and styles that still incorporate similar scoop necklines.  Consider the Long Sleeve Ruched Empire Waist Top or the Long Sleeve Scoop Neck Floral Top that features a deep scoop neckline, but still includes other stylistic elements that make each of these tops unique.  The Ruched Empire Waist top obviously features an empire waist and ruching (the gathered fabric in front) giving it a beautiful classic regal look that reminds us of something of the Victorian time period.  With a beautiful olive green paisley pattern, this scoop neck top exudes femininity.  The Floral Scoop Neck top by Sweet Pea features another beautiful pattern with the red roses on the front, but features a basic black on the trip around the neckline and the sleeves and back.  Both necklines are wide scoop necks, yet that is about the only similarity between these distinctive tops from Sweet Pea.

Collective Concepts features some great short sleeve scoop neck tops or even scoop neck tanks with a variety of great patterns and styles.  Some of our favorites are the Stripe Knit Tops and tanks by Collective Concepts featuring alternate depths for the scoop necklines.  Available in a variety of colors including navy, green, pink and red, these tops feature great fabrics and feminine details like lace or burnout fabrics.

Alternatively, consider this spin on the scoop neckline with the Multi-Collar Long Sleeve Top by Zooey by Alice Heller.  This long top features three scoop neck collars in front and in back on this seemingly basic long sleeve top.  It is a great top for fall and winter as it doesn’t have a deep scoop neck, but yet still gives the look of a scoop neck with the alternate collars.  The long length is ideal and works great for layering over leggings or pairing this top with boots.

The scoop neckline is quite possibly one of our favorites and we’re so glad to see it utilized in so many different styles and patterns of tops ranging from long sleeve all the way to tanks.  Of course you can also find great distinctive styles of scoop necklines in dresses as well, but in any event the scoop neckline is a great feminine neckline and we love finding so many different possible ways to wear scoop neck tops in your wardrobe.

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Cowl Neck Sweaters

The cowl neck sweater is such a feminine, flirty style of sweater.  The cowl neck is great because it really is a loose turtleneck look with an edge.  As I am sure you already know, cowl necks and turtlenecks are very en vogue this season.  The cowl neck has infiltrated more than just sweaters too.  You will find cowl necks on lots of great tunic tops, long sleeve tops and even dresses.  The cowl neck top or sweater is really a great piece to have in your wardrobe during cold weather as it doesn’t look as stiff or formal as your basic turtleneck and gives an added feminine detail to any piece.   I’ll be honest the only thing I don’t like about cowl neck sweaters is that sometimes the cowl neck is too much.  It may be too low or not stay in place well enough so I end up fidgeting with it all day to get it to lay just right.   In the quest to find some great cowl neck pieces that do not fall into that excessive cowl neck category consider a few of these pieces that still give you that look, but are more comfortable and wearable which makes us love them all the more.

Aspen Motorcycle Sweater – This adorable sweater from Velvet by Graham and Spencer is a super versatile piece.  You can wear it as a jacket, as a sweater, zipped up – all the way, zipped up part of the way, or not zipped up at all.  This classic cropped motorcycle jacket/sweater features a zipper off center that goes from top to bottom.   Available in basic black, this sweater is so warm and cozy and features epaulets on the shoulders and zippered pockets at each side.  Of course it also has a tighter fitting cowl neck that you can wear a variety of ways with the functionality of the zipper.  We love that again this isn’t an excessive cowl neck, but a classic neckline that helps make this sweater the ultimate statement piece.

Marni Cowlneck Pocket Dress – The classic cowl neck piece this great dress or tunic length top also from Velvet by Graham and Spencer features the cowl neck line that is just right.  Of course the cowl neck is really on the beginning of the details on this dress with the drawstring waist and the pockets on the front below the waistline.  We love the wide rolled up sleeves and the amazing color choices with this dress.  It has been one of our most popular pieces at Vintage Fringe and we can’t get enough of it.  Of course it pairs perfectly with boots or leggings too. The Marni dress is a great stylish dress with lots of fringe to make this another fabulous statement dress for your wardrobe.

As you can see both of these pieces use the cowl neck features in different ways, but still the cowl neck adds to the amazing fashionable style that makes each of these items distinctive and super stylish.  You can’t go wrong with either of these pieces and we especially love that even though the cowl neck is a great aspect of each of these items it doesn’t overwhelm the dress or the sweater as there are loads of other details that make them perfect statement pieces for any wardrobe.

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