Striped Tees

Stripes are a huge fashion trend this season and you’ll find striped tees are becoming extremely popular.  You can find striped tees in a variety of patterns not just your basic primary color with white stripes for contrast.  The trend doesn’t stop there, as great stripe patterns have also made their way into skirts, dresses, and so much more.  Here are a few of our favorite striped tees as examples of different ways to incorporate stripes into your wardrobe.

First, check out the Stripe V Neck by Alternative Apparel.  It is a basic style top that looks much more than basic with a great stripe pattern.  Here the stripes feature a cream color alternated with a chocolate stripe color.  The top features a v neck and trim around the cuffs and neckline in chocolate for added detail.  This tee is a semi-sheer tee featuring a cotton poly blend fabric.  It really is a great basic staple tee for your wardrobe and at $10 you really can’t go wrong.

Next consider the Splendid 4 Band ¾ Sleeve V Neck.  Of course, Splendid is known for their great fabrics and their signature stripe patterns.  This top is no exception.  This v neck also features a great red/coral color called Sunset that makes this top a great piece for this season with the popularity of great coral tones.  The stripe pattern features a series of “4 band” stripes or 4 thin stripes all paired together and set apart by stripes of coral.  It is a great vibrant top and a classy, distinctive way to showcase stripes.

Another great stripe option from Splendid is the Navy Slub Shadow Stripe Waist Tie Top.  This top features a frilly sleeve and a tie at the waist.  The top features a scoop neckline, and a feminine tie at the waist which makes this top very distinctive and feminine.  The wide stripes are contrasted Navy and Sunset a great mix.  This top features Splendid’s slub jersey and is extremely soft and comfortable to wear which is such a plus for tees.  You can also find this same stripe pattern in the long sleeve Navy Slub Shadow Stripe Puff Sleeve top as well.  That top is a bit more dressy than this one and not quite as much of a tee shirt, but a great fall/winter option.

Finally, for another different style of striped tee consider the Stripe Knit Top by designer Collective Concepts.  This top features wide stripes as well contrasted with white and pink or white and green depending on what you prefer.  The white fabric is a burnout material which gives it an opaque look and the top also features solid white around the neckline. With short sleeves and a loose fit around the body of the top, this style also provides a different tee shirt look.

As you can see, there is no shortage of great striped tees out there and really the tough part is narrowing down which striped tee suits you best.  Each of these tees feature comfortable, wearable fabrics and are distinctive.

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Sheer Blouse

Sheer tops or sheer blouses have really become a great way to incorporate a bit of femininity and sexiness into your wardrobe at the same time.  You may see pieces with great options and stylish patterns that look stunning over a solid color tank or top.  I love these sheer blouses because they can work great for that evening out, but depending on the style and top, they can also work for the office or just for that casual day.  Here are a few examples of how this sheer blouse trend has really been incorporated in a variety of different style tops with different style patterns that can be great additions to your wardrobe.

First, consider the Sheer Peasant Top by designer Sweet Pea by Stacy Frati.  Sweet Pea is always known for their great use of patterns, feminine style tops and their signature nylon mesh fabric that gives each piece an instant opacity.  This Sweet Pea by Stacy Frati top features a gorgeous peasant blouse wide scoop neckline.  The sleeves are 3/4 length and feature gathered cuffs and a loosely gathered neckline.  Of course, the top is sheer and can easily be layered over a tank.  The style features a natural loose fit that really makes it stand out over a tank top.  The Skyler pattern highlights a beautiful teal blue color and contrasting shades of light brown and black.

Next consider the Sheer V Neck Dolman Sleeve Top also by designer Sweet Pea by Stacy Frati.  This top features a pattern called Plume that really does resemble peacock feathers which are so popular this season.  The pattern features grays, shades of black and a hint of white.  The style of top features a wide dolman sleeve and a wide v neck.  The top is styled to be reminiscent of a sweatshirt, but it certainly doesn’t fit the profile of a baggy sweatshirt.  The sleeves even though the dolman sleeve gives it a loose fit; the sleeves keep it with a more formal look.  Again this top features the signature nylon mesh fabric so it has an inherent opacity that will give you the perfect amount of sheerness for layering over a tank top or short sleeve top.

Finally, consider the ultimate sheer dress shirt, the Boyfriend Stripe LS Buttonup Top by Splendid.  True to its name, this long sleeved Boyfriend button-up top from Splendid features a looser fit.  We also love the sheer look as it is is perfect to wear over a tank.  With a crinkly cotton/silk blend, this top is perfect to wear year round as it is light enough to work in the summer and perfect for layering in the winter.  The top features a great blue and black stripe pattern that makes it a versatile piece that perfectly complements your basic black tanks, tops, pants and skirts.  It can obviously be worn tucked in or even tied at the waist for a more feminine look.

As you can see, there are a number of great possibilities for sheer blouses and each with a distinctive style and pattern.

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How To Make An Outfit

Putting outfits together can seem much more daunting than it really should be when you are scrambling to pair pieces together to make that perfect outfit.  To take the pressure off consider a few of these rules of thumb for tips on how to create a wonderful outfit.

Be wary of too much of the same color.  It is best to have outfits that pull good contrasting colors in so that it looks more natural.  As a rule of thumb, consider the color wheel and don’t pair too many strong colors together simultaneously.  You start out with your basic blacks and whites.  Black is the basic starting point for any wardrobe.  Black goes with just about everything although I do try and steer clear of pairing black with navy blue, yellow and orange.  Navy just shouldn’t go with black unless it is actually part of the pattern or print.  Otherwise, I would try and avoid a solid navy top and solid black pants.  As an example, the Boyfriend Buttonup Top by Splendid pairs navy and black together and it works really well.  Black and yellow just screams bumble bee and then black and orange just screams pumpkin or Halloween.  The next color I would weave in is a good navy blue outfit, brown, and a good grey outfit if grey is a color that suits your skintone.  These colors are a bit more neutral than black in terms of pairing with other colors and grey goes with just about any color if paired well and navy looks great with some pinks, greens, yellows, and some reds although you want to steer clear of too much navy and red unless it is the 4th of July.

These color options are just the starting point for how to start creating a great outfit, but you with this foundation you can then incorporate other colors.  Assuming you are dressing up for work, a business meeting or another event then you will want to keep in mind a few other rules of thumb as well.  I suggest adding in lighter colors for tops to add contrast to darker pants.  Some people like to wear solid black or all one color outfits, and I just think they get monotonous.  You will want to include pops of other color for accent and style to your outfit.  Stripes or patterns are a great way to break up solid colors and still keep in the same color family.   A good example of pairing pieces in similar colors would be wearing the Odora top by Velvet by Graham and Spencer with a grey pencil skirt like the Sintia Pencil skirt over a grey tank top with the Odora top in Botanica a lime green or in white to help lighten up the outfit.  Of course to complete the outfit you will want to include great accessories like a good belt, gorgeous earrings and a chunky necklace.

Creating an Outfit is really not that complicated if you start with a basic foundation and then work into incorporating other splurge colors or pieces to complement your foundational wardrobe.

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Oversized Knitted Sweater

Having that perfect go to oversized knitted sweater has become an essential part of a good wardrobe.  I love having an easy to wear knit sweater that you can just throw on or take you as your just in case sweater when you aren’t sure if you’ll be warm enough. Finding a sweater that is oversized is also a current fashion trend that really does help create a relaxed sweater look that I love because it breaks up the monotony of the classic sweaters that you find in your closet.  The oversized sweater is a great way to rescue a tired, stuffy sweater wardrobe and update it.  Consider a few examples of ways to freshen up your sweater wardrobe with some oversized knitted sweater possibilities.

First consider a short sleeved sweater that is versatile enough and can work practically year round, the Laurie B. Gable Stripe Cardigan.  This oversized sweater features a dramatic contrasting zipper that is front and center in this distinctive cardigan, the Gable Stripe grey and black pattern looks so classy and elegant.  Laurie B. still manages to weave in fashion forward elements with the oversized dolman flared sleeves on this sweater, a scoop neckline and the contrasting black trim around the neckline and cuffs and hem.   You also would not believe how luxuriously soft the knit on this sweater feels.  It is made from a viscose, nylon blend and it feels super soft and very comfortable.  This is a great sweater to wear over that black dress in summer unzipped or just with a black skirt or pants and capris.  One of our favorite winter looks is wearing this over a long sleeve black top with a black skirt and boots.  As you can see, this is a great distinctive sweater that would be perfect to freshen up your sweater wardrobe.

Another distinctive sweater option is the Laurie B. Moonlight Cap Wrap Sweater.  You’ll love this distinctive sweater and its fashion forward look.  It is not for everyone, but if it suits your personal style it can be a great way to spice up your sweater wardrobe and has an oversized loose fitted look.  Complete with a flowing look of the wide v neck with the tie around the waist giving it a contemporary, fitted look.  This sweater is available in a variety of colors and is perfect to go over a long sleeve top in just about any color.  You’ll love the slight shimmer on the knit and the distinctive, modern look.   It is a perfect wrap to layer and looks stunning with boots or leggings.

As you can see, finding a good oversized knit sweater is a great way to freshen up your closet with a modern knit sweater that is totally en vogue.   You will quickly find that each of these sweaters will become some of your favorite go to sweaters as they bring distinctive looks to your wardrobe.  Best of all they are versatile pieces that can be worn in multiple seasons and will be great investment pieces in your personal wardrobe.

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T Shirt Dresses

T shirt dresses are not simply just for casual occasions anymore.  This season, you’ll see t shirt dresses making a comeback for special occasions and even being worn by a number of celebrities.   The loose off the shoulder t shirt dress is certainly a popular style trend.  We love this trend because it is a great way to dress up something casual and yet still be comfortable.  The t shirt dress is something you really should consider including in your summer wardrobe.  Depending on the piece it can also work as a tunic top paired with leggings in colder weather too.

T shirt dresses can come in a variety of styles and fabrics giving you lots of options with a style that is seemingly straightforward.  Consider the Berta dress by designer Velvet by Graham and Spencer.  This baby jersey cotton t shirt fabric is styled in a v neck with a tie around the waist.  This longer version of your essential v neck tee is a great staple piece for your summer dress wardrobe and is stylish while also being comfortable and easy to wear.  The tie around the waist really does give you added versatility and gives this dress a more fitted look than a loose t shirt.

Another great example of the t shirt dress is the Hunter Maldives Striped Dress also by designer Velvet by Graham and Spencer.  This dress features an off center v neck on a striped t shirt dress.  The v neck has a contrasting navy trim against white.  This dress has a t shirt fit that is loose and can even fall a touch off the shoulder.   Another baby jersey cotton dress, this dress is also comfortable and easy to wear.  This dress is also perfect to wear as a tunic over navy leggings.

A dressier option that embodies a t shirt dress style is the Burca Scoopneck dress by Velvet.  This dress features a slinky rayon fabric which adds to the dressier style, and features a bold silver zipper down the back of this dress.  The style is looser at the top and more fitted at the waist giving it a flirty, sexy style while still remaining true to the t shirt dress style.

As you can see there are a number of different ways that t shirt dresses can be worn and in a variety of different fabrics.  With tunic tops and leggings also becoming so popular of late, the t shirt dress is really a variant of that trend and a great way to add versatility to your wardrobe.   Comfort is always something we consider when buying any item and especially dresses, so the t shirt dress is a welcome trend because it is such a great comfort piece.  No matter what your style, the t shirt dress is something that you should consider incorporating into your closet.  Truly there are so many different variations of the basic t shirt now found in a dress or tunic length top that you really can’t go wrong in finding at least one if not several of these pieces to layer into your wardrobe.

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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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Ella Moss Tops

Some of our favorite tops hail from designer Ella Moss.  The wonderful Ella Moss line is well known for their great use of luxurious fabrics to help give their pieces a flowy, feminine look.  Ella Moss tops are always contemporary, yet elegant styles and the fabrics make you wish you could wear them all the time.  The styles of Ella Moss tops generally fall on the dressier side of your wardrobe, but there are several Ella Moss tops that do have a more casual look.   Here are a few of our favorite Ella Moss tops.

Consider the Victoria Front Tie Neck Top by Ella Moss.  This top features a ruffle around the neckline and long ties for show or if you were to actually tie them around the neck would give it a more Victorian look.  This top features a v neckline with buttons down the center of the bodice.  The base of the top has a loose fluid look to it.  The sleeves also feature a light ruffle at the hem.  Made with contrasting voile fabric around the cuffs and bustline and modal jersey around the body of the top, this top feels as luxurious as it looks.  This beautiful top is available in Lemonade (Yellow) or Chive (Green).

The Jocelyn Puff Sleeve Top by Ella Moss is also a great versatile piece for your wardrobe.  This top features a lightweight cotton fabric with an adorable pattern including white flowers on the solid cherry red or lemonade yellow fabrics.  With a ruffle around the base of the sleeves, the neckline and the waist, this top always looks feminine.  The waist line and the cuff of the puff sleeve are gathered as well.  This lightweight top is the perfect addition to your summer or spring wardrobe.

Finally, we love the classic, but always perfect Ellassentials Short Sleeve V Neck Top with Smocking.  This top features the classic modal jersey fabric which we have learned to love about the Ella Moss line.  The fabric feels so soft and luxurious.  This elegant v neck also features smocking in the center at the base of the v neck for contrast which really does give this top an added element of femininity.  The base of the top features a flared empire waist like fit which of course only adds to the feminine touches.  This top is available in Admiral (Navy) and Haze (Grey).  This top really is classic and elegant at the same time.

As you can see there is never a shortage of great, distinctive top options with Ella Moss.  Complete with fabulous fabrics, these tops feel as luxurious as they look.  If you already love Ella Moss tops, you will know exactly what we are talking about and if you haven’t ever tried an Ella Moss top, you will want to try incorporating at least one Ella Moss top into your wardrobe.  We are confident that you will find that Ella Moss tops are an essential component of every gal’s wardrobe.

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Spring 2011 Fashion

This spring there are a variety of great fashion trends that you should be aware of and work to incorporate them into your own wardrobe if they suit your individual style. In the end we all have to decide which trends work best for us, but it is always helpful to know what is out there.  In fact, even as a shopper who considers myself fashion forward, I must admit that I do sometimes sit back and wait until I see some of these trends lasting beyond one season before I incorporate some of them into my wardrobe.  So bottom line, take these as a good assortment of ideas and then utilize them as you feel most comfortable.

You will see the groundwork of a resurgence of neutrals and earth tones.   We think you will actually see more of these colors in the Fall of 2011, but we’re seeing lots of khaki or white colors in jackets and wraps, cardigans, tops and dresses.   You will also see lots of these colors with a variety of patterns of stripes ranging from wide stripes to very narrow.  You’ll see neutrals and stripes in accessories like bags, scarves and shoes.

  • One popular style this season is the tie neck top.  These stylish tops can be found in a variety of fabrics although we’ve seen them primarily in sheer fabrics.  This top is a great way to incorporate the fabulous scarf trend that is also going to be prominent this spring.  Likewise you will also continue to see the high-waisted belt as a trend this spring and summer with more skinny / narrow belts instead of only seeing the super wide belts that are still prevalent.   While I have never been a proponent of the sewn in belt accessories, having a few go to belts in basic accent colors will be a stylish and economical way to spice up your wardrobe this spring.  You will also see lots of tie belts around the hips or even creating an empire waist line.  Ties will also be found on skirts, jackets and dresses for an added touch of feminine details.

Bohemian style blouses will also be a must have for spring fashion this year.  These loose style tops come in a variety of styles with some having ruffles, patterns, drawstrings around the neck or waist, embroidery, buttons, and much more.  You will still find that loose flowing look in a top to be very stylish this season.

As for pants, the trend with skinny pants and leggings will continue in spring with cropped lengths.  You will want to have a few pairs of different colors of cropped length leggings.  You will also see a variety of long length skirts and long ruffled skirts.  We’ve seen many of these long almost ankle length skirts with ruffled layers in bright spring colors like purples and corals.

In short, if you want to be front and center with the latest spring fashion trends in 2011, you will want to layer into your wardrobe good belts and add in at least one skinny /narrow belt.  Be sure to have at least one pair of cropped leggings and if you feel up to it add in a long ruffled skirt.  Have at least one neutral tone wrap or jacket to accent your spring dresses and skirts.  Most of all, be sure to make sure that whatever styles you incorporate we suggest finding your own voice in these styles to really help accent and create your own individual style.

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Fashion Boutique Online

Shopping for fashion online is becoming far more popular and common.  We all know how alluring the traditional clothing boutique can be.  If you had to plan your favorite shopping experience many of those days would be spent shopping at a variety of great fashion boutiques finding distinctive pieces for your wardrobe.  For those of us who struggle to enough time to make that dream a reality, the boutique shopping experience can more easily be found at a website near you.

In fact, we started Vintage Fringe to meet this exact need.  We wanted to bring the perks of boutique shopping online and make it far more convenient.  Like many of you, we were tired of buying a top at a chain store only to see many of our friends wearing the same thing.  For example, last summer I attended a wedding and one of the other bridesmaids was wearing an identical denim jacket from the same chain store!  Disgusted with this type of trend, we decided to open an online boutique that provides many of the same boutique benefits with far less of the hassle.

In case you are new to shopping for fashion online or a little leery, consider the following reasons why finding a great fashion boutique online can be much easier.  It goes without saying that shopping at an online boutique is far more convenient.  You can shop on your hours, not the store’s. (And let’s face it-boutiques are notorious for having inconvenient hours.)  You don’t have to fight or even pay for parking.  You can shop at home in your pajamas.  You can shop at work or at home and frankly sometimes even on your iPad or cell phone.  You can more easily locate niche items online if you know exactly what you want.  At Vintage Fringe, we even offer free shipping and free returns on all non-outlet items, and yes we even have an outlet featuring major fashion bargains.  We also can’t forget that when you shop online you don’t have to worry about those annoying sales people bothering you as you shop!

One of the best reasons for boutique shipping is that boutiques make it easier to find niche and distinctive fashion pieces.  Shopping at online fashion boutiques is no exception.  You can frequently find great boutiques with a variety of niche designers you won’t find everywhere online.  One of the best ways to search online for such niche items is to just google the name of the designer and see what is out there.  Online boutiques like traditional boutiques often offer you harder to find designers and do not carry as much inventory as larger stores so you are frequently much more able to find a distinctive, individual look for yourself.

Shopping online allows you to compare multiple sites with far less work than shopping at boutiques in person.  There are many sites online that allow you to search a variety of different sites based on specific things like designers, colors, sizes, or even descriptions of the styles.  This ability to comparison shop in a far more convenient way will make shopping far more efficient than bouncing from boutique to boutique.  Boutiques.com is one such site that features the ability for you to bookmark your favorite pieces in your own boutique.

Once you discover online boutique shopping you will quickly find that it is much simpler and far more convenient than the dedication and time required to complete your own boutique shopping scavenger hunt and will hopefully become your first stop for fashion shopping in the future.

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Stylish Winter Clothes

During colder weather it is easy to get mired down with lots of layers that keep you bundled up and warm, but sometimes it is nice to break out into stylish winter clothes so that you still manage to maintain that flirty, feminine look.  Here are a few great winter clothes ideas to help snap you out of the winter clothing doldrums.

Consider the sweater.  A piece that you certainly need to wear in the winter and there are some great ways to find stylish sweaters that are not frumpy or plain and will help spice up your winter wardrobe. Take for example the Aspen Motorcycle sweater by Velvet by Graham and Spencer.  A great retro inspired piece the Aspen Motorcycle sweater is a cropped sweater featuring a fold over neck along with an off center zipper from top to bottom.  We also love the great zipper details on the pockets and the epaulets on the shoulders with matching black buttons.  An adorable sweater that is certain to be a staple piece in your wardrobe. This sweater style is a must have for cold winters and this sweater is so warm and cozy and still looks super stylish on.

Another winter staple is the turtleneck.  Turtlenecks have really become timeless pieces that really never fade completely out of style.  While the basic concept of the turtleneck is fairly standard between tops, but you really can find a variety of different details or accents that make them very distinctive.  Consider the Catelina Turtleneck by Velvet with pleats at the neckline.  This turtleneck features a baby jersey cotton and the turtleneck does stay in place better than other turtleneck styles and we adore the pleats which give a basic style a little added feminine touch.   Compare that turtleneck to the Discharge turtleneck by AlixK or the similar Cappy short sleeve turtleneck also by AlixK.  These turtlenecks feature a gathered turtleneck that also stays in place, but creates a beautiful feminine touch on an otherwise plain turtleneck.  AlixK is known for their hand embroidery detailing every top and we love the added details like the darts that give added stylish accents to basic style tops.

Another great example of stylish winter clothes is various designs of wrap sweaters.  We love the Audrey wrap sweater by designer Laurie B.  This sweater is a lightweight fabric blend that feels luxuriously soft.  The fabric includes a cashmere and viscose blend so it feels silky soft on.  The wrap is a faux wrap but with a contrasting tie around the waist that gives it added depth and a subtle feminine touch.  Wraps as a whole are a great piece for your winter wardrobe and you will see them in a variety of styles and colors.

In short, these are simply a few examples of great ways to insert stylish winter clothes into your wardrobe.  Of course you can find a variety of wonderful stylish pieces for colder weather that really do give you great feminine styles to incorporate into your wardrobe you just have to look for them.  Don’t forget to accessorize any of your favorite winter pieces with scarves or cute hats as appropriate as great economical ways to bring in added depth and style to your winter clothes.

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