Saturday, September 20, 2014

Left Shoe, Left Shoe, Left Shoe, Right

What color shoes to wear with your outfit.

Do you have trouble figuring what color shoes to wear with your outfit?  For some ladies this comes naturally.  For others, we need fashion rules.  Here are some tips.  Just remember once you understand the concepts, feel free to break the rules.  "They're more like guidelines anyway."

Match your hair or skin.
Let's say you've just got this blue dress.  How do you decide what shoes to wear?  Try matching it to either your skin or your hair.  Obviously, I've paired this dress with pumps, but the principles apply whatever style shoe you're wearing.

Match your main color.
A word of warning so we don't wander into Matchy-Matchy Land:  If you are going to choose this rout for your outfit be sure to either choose colors that are slightly off (like the orange top with the tomato red shoe above) or be sure the textures are different (like the textured lace top with the smooth patent pump).

Match your supporting color.
If matching your main color is too matchy-matchy for you, but you still wanna feel coordinated, maybe matching your supporting color is for you.  In the set above, the top's main color is pink, so we're going to choose the supporting cream color for our pump.

Match an accessory.
Again, we need to avoid matchy-matchy land, so if you're going to rock this look, maybe choose different shades of purple, or be sure to break up the monotony with other accessories.  Silver jewelry and a grey slouchy beanie would be great with this set.

Choose a contrasting color 
Choose a color that is opposite to the main color you are wearing.  This often gives you that "pop of color" because contrasting colors enhance each other.  Learn more about the color wheel here.

Choose a metallic or animal print.
When in doubt, rock your outfit with a metallic or animal print shoe.  Both can be dressed up or down depending on the type of shoe.  Metallics come in all colors, from silver to gold to copper to bronze and everything in between!  And of course leopard print is an annual favorite for most fashionistas, but for me snake print is where it's at.  It's subtle, it's sexy, and it goes with everything.  :)

Hope this has inspired you to try new combinations with your shoe wardrobe.  If you're like me your shoe closet has a lot of neutral colors.  Let's get out of that rut this fall, ladies!!  Post your photos below, or comment on the Facebook link!

<3, Mandy

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Handbag Obsession

Hi ladies!!!

Last week when I was at the Rehoboth, my sisters, mom, and I went to the Tanger Outlets and visited the Wilsons Leather store.  OMG, SO many fabulous finds!!  It was there that I found a gorgeous pink "doctor bag" on sale, but I knew I didn't really NEED another purse, so I didn't get it.

*Sigh*  Then I became obsessed.  But what could I do?  It was too late.  We'd already left.

So when my sister and I went shopping yesterday, I searched every store for a doctor bag in the perfect pink color that also came with a long strap.  (Being a mom, I need to be able to throw my bag over my shoulder so I have room for carrying babies.)  And then I found this beauty at Charming Charlie.  On sale for $18!!

The photo doesn't do her justice; the color is not this red.  But she is perfection.

Anyway, all this purse shopping got me to wondering, what are the different styles of purses called?  And of course if I'm wondering it, probably some of you have too.  So I did my favorite kind of research.  FASHION research.  :D  

The three things we're going to cover today are terms for features, handles / straps, and finally kinds of handbags.

First here are a couple terms for features:

Drawstring - pretty obvious, pull the string to close the bag.

Charming Charlie
Quilted - the stitching makes a quilted pattern on the bag.  Diamond shapes are most common, but other patterns show up every now and then too.

Charming Charlie
Patent - very, very shiny.  Very shiny.

Charming Charlie
Flap - the bag has a flap that folds over the top of the bag.

Now let's cover handles / straps:

Charming Charlie
Clutch - no handles, though most now come with detachable ones of various lengths.

Wristlet - small handle that is worn over the wrist.

Shoulder - handles are long enough to go over the shoulder.

Cross-Body - handle is long enough to wear over one shoulder and around the other hip.

Charming Charlie
Top Handle - a small handle on the top of the bag, just long enough to grab.

Over-the-Arm - Ok, so I don't know what this kind of handle is actually called.  I've searched and searched, so if any of you know, please leave a comment.  For now I'll call it the over-the-arm handle.  It's long enough to wear over your elbow, but not really long enough to wear comfortably over the shoulder.

Ok, now that we've got those terms, let's talk about different kinds of bags:

Backpack - worn on the back, two handles for over the shoulders and a top handle.

 Baguette - long length, short height, over-the-arm handle.  A "classic" style bag, but not very popular right now.

Barrel - cylindrical in shape, long length, short hight, circular body.

Charming Charlie
Bucket - flat round(ish) bottom, either open on top or has a draw string.

Canteen - round front, typically small in size.

Doctor - inspired by the old fashioned doctor's bags, roomy, rounded top, flat bottom, over-the-arm handles though many now come with a long shoulder or cross-body handle that attaches to the ends.

Thirty-One Gifts
Duffle - also known as a Weekender, this bag is large enough to carry your essentials for a weekend, so it's perfect for traveling on short trips.  Typically has shoulder and cross-body handles.

Thirty-one Gifts
Foldover - this bag can be carried two ways.  Either tall like a shopper (see below) or fold over the top for a shorter cross-body style.

Frame - has a metal frame top with a clasp, like an oversized coin purse.  This style is not very common right now.

Hobo - slouchy style, either shoulder or cross-body.  Find these on your vacation!  They're a fabulous and practical souvenir.

Messanger / Satchel - this bag is rectangular; think old fashioned school bag.  While messenger bags tend to have a long cross-body handle, the satchel typically has a top handle.  The terms "messenger" and "satchel" are often used interchangeably though.

Charming Charlie
Minaudière - a small bag with hard sides and a clasp closure.  Can be clutch, cross-body, or wristlet.

Reticule - a small decorative drawstring bag.  Not very common right now.

Charming Charlie
Saddle - inspired by old-fashioned saddle bags, typically straight across the top, round along the bottom, with a flap and not very big.

Shopper - often called a tote, this bag is a tall rectangle with one or two handles on the top.  It will typically be made of a light weight material which makes it perfect for shopping.

Charming Charlie
Tote - typically wider on the top than it is on the bottom with two top handles, though many now come with a cross-body handle as well.

Hope you found this fun and helpful!!  Do you have a favorite handbag?  Leave a picture in the comments of your go-to bag or your favorite style(s)!!  I'd love too see what you like and why!

<3, Mandy