18 October 2010

Style Dilemma: Designer Prints for a SAHM

DesigningMom and I emailed this weekend:

DC Celine:

I recently bought this dress from Target's website.

When it arrived, I was a bit underwhelmed. I think it's OK, I just don't know what to do with it. Since I'm a SAHM*, I feel a bit "out of the loop" when it comes to fashion. Do you feel like giving me some advice?

It has 3/4 sleeves, and now that it's fall, I think maybe I need to wear it with a jacket or a cardigan? Also, I like animal prints, but the whole dress is a (maybe) bit much and the jacket/cardigan will be useful in covering some of it? What about shoes? Boots? Flats? I don't like bare legs in the winter, so I probably want to wear tights...or not? It comes with a little fabric belt. Should I replace it with something more substatial? If so...what? How about jewelry? I have a free-lance interior design client now and will occasionally have some meetings with them in their fabulous house, along with some buying trips to the Washington Design Center, so I need to look somewhat business-casual-chic (is that a category?).

Dear DesigningMom:

first thoughts...more later...

like the animal print.

love the concept of the shirtdress, but yes, they can be underwhelming.

yes, your instinct on a "more substantial" belt is a good one. big 80s style wide belt would work well - or if you can't stomach that, a skinny belt would be fine, too - solid color - as fun or as neutral as you can handle. might sound weird, but think of the print as a sort of neutral.

on jacket - no, don't think you need a jacket or sweater. 3/4 sleeves are 4 season - and the best. i love them. find some plain gold (no chains) bangles - wide ones - or some plain bakelite or lucite bangles - clear or a color - and that should do for accessories. if you are chilly, i'd say a 3/4 sleeve cardi, but you'd need to belt that, too, to withstand the tendency towards boring.

and on shoes - whatever you want - all of those would work, though i'd lean to pumps, and boots (though dear to my heart) would be my last choice.

Dear DC Celine:

This is fun. Love it! How about a camel-colored belt (the lighter color in the print) and then chocolte brown tights and shoes? I love the idea of a bunch of bangles. If only I had some.

Dear DesigningMom:
i'd actually go with something not in the print - a black patent, or even a yellow or green.** camel would blend, and you want it to pop. yes, you could do brown tights and shoes - monochrome legs/feet = length/height. for the bangles, hit a claire's. or a thrift store. and i'd say go for wide ones, big chunky things instead of little clanky ones. something bout those and the leopard rings "jersey" to me. or you could do that to be cheeky...in which case, go as high as you dare with shoes. wedges would be a good option, too, as they just are.

it is fun. i'd say use your design aesthetic...think about how you'd accessorize a room, and you're probably good.

I happened to see DesigningMom at her daughter's birthday party Sunday, and she gave me an update. She's excited about the idea of a boldly colored belt. Now, if she could just find the time to get one (more online shopping, dear?). The thing is, she has a great sense of style. She's the one I always admire for being together, and her home? Well, she and I apparently have the same taste. I pretty much want her kitchen. And dining room...and...

*Stay at Home Mom

**Alright, folks. Apparently the way to go here is pushing the Jersey envelope. Exhaustive web search and the only wide bold colors I could find in belts were black patent, gold or red. Black is mildly predictable, but fine. Gold - well, that fits into the camel category - would work, but would blend too much. And red, well, I'm always a fan of red, but you'd just have to have fun with it. In that case, maybe finding a sweet little cardigan (emphasis on the word "sweet") would be in order, to temper the tendency to get your nails airbrushed and tease your hair. Belt sources (having posting issues, sorry!) are JC Penny & Kohl's. Yup.


1dekorasyon said...

thank you very much for this useful interior design related topic. my appreciation is for your nice presentation.

Miss Scarlet said...

Love the belt advice. And a color would be awesome.

Miss Scarlet said...

On the belt topic, though, I have trouble wearing belts to work because I am constantly adjusting them. I wore one over an unbuttoned cardigan one day and spent most of my time keeping it looking ok.