How to make a bold statement this Fall!

Business Professional. What does this phrase really mean for 2017? This is one of the hot topics that will come up during my closet audits. Most people think business professional attire is a suit…meaning pants and a jacket or skirt and matching jacket…which for the most part is true. However, that does not mean that you have to continue wearing that grey pinstripe suit from the 90’s that you got from you first interview. Just because it is a suit, doesn’t necessarily mean it looks professional. And while we are on the topic, why do have to wear charcoal in order to feel professional? Why not have some fun with it?  And don’t even get me started on dark brown suiting that is reminiscent of a men’s brown leisure suit from the 70’s. You just don’t need it. Not only, will it make you feel masculine, but the color is outdated and just plain frumpy. I could go on and on about how “just because you are wearing a suit, doesn’t mean you look professional” but that isn’t what we are talking about today. Today we are talking about how to pump up that work wardrobe with a little bit of color…more specifically with the power color of the season. RED! It’s everywhere this Fall and might be just the thing to take your confidence up a notch! AND….if the suit pant or jacket is tailored to fit you, even a bold color like red will look sharp and professional.

Back in my Nordstrom days, I acted as store manager a couple of times per month. On these days, we were expected to dress up a little bit more than normal…dresses or trousers. Because I never had an “office job”, my business attire was a little lacking and wanting to “dress the part” of a Nordstrom store manager, I set out to find some trousers. What I found was the most amazing pair of red PANTS. They had a little bit of a wider leg, a flat front with some gold button details and after I got them altered (which BTW alterations are SO important with business attire) fit like a glove. The first time I wore them for a manager shift, I received multiple compliments on my LOOK…not just the pants. I know it was because they made me feel professional, fashionable and most importantly confident. I loved those red pants then and still have them to this day.

When the Fall 2017 trends started to drop, I was delighted to see shades of red gracing the runways in unexpected ways like suiting. Now, I know that red pants might not be for everyone, but if you are looking to step up your wardrobe game, it might be just the thing. This color is classic in style and yet makes a bold statement. It also mixes well with solids like black and white and traditional prints like leopard and stripes.

Need a business profesh look? Throw on a black top with a sharp black blazer and black or nude heel. Or grab that white blazer (that is one of my wardrobe staple suggestions) and pair it with a complimentary top. If you go with the white blazer, I would stick to a nude heel to keep the look fluid. And don’t forget to finish off your look with a some jewels!

For my red pant inspired look, I went outside my own box (since I normally wear neutrals) and paired these adorable wide leg pants with a blue and white striped blouse that has little tiny bird details! Since I am a “creative” professional, I don’t necessarily HAVE to wear a jacket. But, if I wanted to pump this look up a notch, I would have added my white blazer. This look is fun, whimsical and makes the world think, “If she is confident enough to wear red pants, she must know what she is talking about.” This could be you too!

Below are some of my favorite styles of red pants in lots of different styles. Pencil, cropped, wide leg, culotte, side split, high-waisted, plus size…so many options there is bound to be one just for you. Are you ready to join the red pants movement?

 

Fall trend report: How to incorporate that sneaker into your daily wardrobe and look cool doing it

Fall trend report: How to incorporate that sneaker into your daily wardrobe and look cool doing it

If you follow along my fashion blog in Herlife magazine, then you know that I have a love for shoes. Shoes can make or break a look so I always make sure to keep my footwear on point. And, for the last year or so, the sneaker trend has ben growing and growing and might be one of my fave shoe trends to date! But with the evolution of a trend, comes new iterations on a simple basic. It isn’t just sport brands like Nike or Adidas that are making sneakers anymore….it’s EVERYONE…which is great because there is bound to be a style out there that is just for you. But, I totally get it. Sometimes too much variety can become overwhelming and take all the fun out of shopping! Shopping is supposed to fun and help you learn how to express your personal style….not frustrating. Soooo, I am here to give you a little insight on how to dip your “toe” into a new pair of sneakers.

 

Classic Cool Style

You feel best in your favorite jeans and a t-shirt so your footwear should reflect that classic cool vibe. Go for retro styled sneaks in neutral colors. These shoes will instantly uplevel any look for that feeling that will make you say “I feel so cool but also I am super comfortable!” You can’t go wrong with these!

 

 

Modern and Trendy

 

You love mixing prints and wearing unexpected combinations of clothes. You are always one step ahead of the pack with the latest trend and once you have conquered it you are ready for the next one. Try an “out of the box” shoe like these!

 

Classic Traditional

 

You feel best when you are wearing a collared button down with pants or jeans. You exude that traditional Ralph Lauren vibe and you are a little afraid that the sneaker trend is not for you. On the contrary! Many traditional brands have expanded their offering to sneakers so they will still look classic with your style but they will also be a great update to your wardrobe. Black or white leather is always going to look great. Living on the edge? Try one of these styles in a fall color like Merlot or Grey.

When my clients started integrating the sneaker trend into their wardrobe last Spring, the first thing they said was…” Abby, these are awesome and so super comfortable but how the heck am I supposed to wear them?” And the answer is…pretty much however you want (within reason of course.) Just like anything, when you try out a new trend, the most important thing is to wear it with confidence. Because confidence is one of the best looking styles out there.

Here are a couple of my favorite ways to rock those new sneaks!

Classic Cool Vibe: Throw those old skool vans on with your jeans and t-shirt, or pull a dress out of your closet and pair it with that. For Fall, grab that new jean skirt (that I am going to talk about next week) and pair it with a sweater and finish it off with your retro sneak.

Modern Trendy: You can’t wait to throw those leopard print sneaks on with your black trouser pants for a menswear vibe. Or break out some mule styled sneakers to go with that shift dress. This is the perfect way to elevate a business casual look. But, of course all of these styles can be worn casual as well.

Classic traditional: Since the classic traditional styled sneakers are “dressier”, there are even more options. Picture the perfect white collared button down shirt, tucked into your black skinny jeans, cinch the waist with a classic brown leather belt and finish off with that clean white simple sneaker. This is the perfect way to freshen up your traditional look.

Wanting to try out something different this week, I decided to switch up my usual jeans/t-shirt/sneaks look (I know I am so BASIC) and instead tried a dress/jean jacket/sneak look. I ended up loving it and felt cool yet feminine and most important…confident.

 

Which sneakers are your favorite? What is your favorite new way to wear sneakers? I would love to hear!!

 

My top 3 ways to wear “black on black”

Today was quite the day! With the solar eclipse HAPPENING and getting to see my friends at Better Kansas City, my schedule was full. To stay on brand with the total totality of the solar eclipse, I was asked on the show to chat about my favorite ways to style the color black or HOW TO ROCK THAT BLACK ON BLACK LOOK. 

Seeing how black is my favorite color to wear, I was excited to share how to knock that “black on black” look out of the park. To some, it may be boring. But, if you add a little out of the box thinking and a smidgen of creativity then…BAM! You have a look of perfect sophistication. And this is how you do it.

My top 3 favorite ways to wear the color black

1. Mix those prints!

Find items with classic prints…think stripes, polka dots, plaid, animal print..etc. Make sure these prints all have the color black SOMEWHERE so that the look is still cohesive. Try something like I did which included a leopard mini skirt, black lace top and black and cream striped sweater. I finished off the look with some black boucle sneakers because sneakers are IT right now and most certainly are having a moment.

2. Take your LBD out for a spin

There is a reason that every wardrobe capsule you see tells you that you NEED a little black dress (or LBD). I do believe in this fashion commandment, but I don’t think your black dress has to be saved up only for special occasions. Why not style your LBD into something you can wear everyday? Try something like this: Black dress, bomber jacket, leather belt and yes another darling pair of sneakers. We just took an otherwise dressy slip dress and turned it into streetwear in a snap!

3. Play with Texture

Have you ever noticed how some black fabric can look greenish or bluish or brownish? That is because different fabric manufacturers work with different dye lots. This makes it really hard to “match blacks” and hence is why most people think wearing black on black is a cardinal sin. However, not only is black on a black a good looking combo, it is slimming and the ultimate way to look professional or sophisticated. So, when when you want to rock that black on black look, make sure the fabrics are different TEXTURE. The texture adds dimension to the fabric so that if the color is off a little bit, it is camouflaged. Try this: Black Crepe pants with a black lace top. Each of these pieces have a certain texture that makes the look flow. If you are more into color, then find a piece that has a pop to it, like this floral embroidered lace top. Finish off with a chunky necklace and that perfect black mule and you are set!

For my black on black look today, I went the little black dress route. I added my fave leather jacket, some cool sneaks and added a pop of color with a turquoise squash blossom necklace. And because I love theme days, I partook in the face painting that was happening at the studio. This look made me feel cool, comfortable and ready for whatever the day was going to bring…mostly it just brought the solar eclipse.

So I want to know…what is your favorite way to to wear “black on black”? Drop me a note in the comments below! I am always looking for new ideas and inspiration!

How to transition those summer clothes to Fall

How to transition those summer clothes for Fall

 

 

 

One of spring and summer’s biggest trend was that classic blue and white stripe shirting. You probably saw it in the normal button down collared shirt style, or the off the shoulder style, or wrap dress or…the list could go on. It was the perfect crisp and clean look for the season. But, wait…summer is drawing to a close! How will you be able to keep wearing one of spring’s latest trends into the fall? It’s simple. Pair it with black.

I have multiple blue and white striped tops (and jeans) that I bought for spring and summer. I paired them with white denim, bright colors (like red and orange) and even my distressed blue denim. But now that we are entering the transitional period for fashion, I decided it was time look in my closet to see how I could style some of my summer clothes to make them look well, less summer.

The first thing that caught my eye was a pair of blue and white striped distressed jeans that I had purchased back in May to wear to my very first KC Sporting Game…which by the way was super fun and totally recommend for a fun day out). I continued to wear them with white tops and bright colored tops throughout the summer and really loved the look. But with Fall right around the corner, those combos started to feel a little stale. So instead I decided to take those springy striped pants and pair them with my favorite color…black! I loved how modern it looked. And it took these very springy pants and made them look more sophisticated and toned down… just more “transitional”. I then did the reverse with my blue and white striped tops and paired them with black denim.

Other ways to transition summer clothes to Fall:

  • Substitute some booties for your sandals
  • Add an oversized chunky sweater to jeans shorts and a t-shirt
  • Add that olive utility jacket to a dress
  • Throw that blue and white striped button down blouse over a black dress and tie it up!

Add a hat..like that cute fedora that you aren’t sure about wearing but totally should.

 

My fave transitional items

BTW…if you click on the pics, you can look at the details!

 


It’s hard to believe we are already talking about transitional clothes since it is only August, but GUYS….it will be Fall before you know it and you have to be prepared! So take a spin through your closet and find some items that you can transition easily by pairing them with black! You will instantly update that summer look and will for sure turn some heads. So….GO!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dressing Room Diaries Volume 1: Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Sneaky peeky

Once a nordy girl, always a nordy girl. It’s true. For the past 10 years, the Nordstrom Anniversary sale has been the kick off to Fall fashion and one of the most exiting times of the year! After experiencing it from the inside as a stylist and now from the outside as a stylist, I can say fairly confidently that this one of the best sales of the year. And guys….it’s finally here! Happy Anniversary Nordy lovers!

In honor of one of my favorite times of year, I will be sharing a new “my favorite”….roundup for the next 5 days so that you can shop the sale like an expert. So stay tuned! But for now, being the helpful personal shopper that I am, I scoped out the sale a little bit early to give you a glimpse into my personal favorite items and to give you a taste of what is trending this Fall! All of these items are in store at Nordstrom Oak Park Mall. I apologize ahead of time for the amazing picture quality…there is nothing better than dressing room lighting! But, if you are a Kansas City gal and love something below, then you will be supporting local Kansas city people that work at the store and you will be able to TRY BEFORE YOU BUY…which is the key to finding the perfect fit!

My Top 15

# 1 Rag and Bone High/Low blouse

One of the first pieces I was drawn to was this reversible high low striped blouse from Rag and Bone. It has buttons on the front and back to be worn either way. The longer side could be tied up at the waist for a more casual look. You could tuck the whole shirt in to a high waisted skirt or pant for a very buttoned up look, or you could get really creative and turn it into a tube top! Either way you want to wear it, you will for sure turn heads and be investing in something that can be worn for years to come. Go a step further and leave your cuffs unbuttoned for that perfectly un-perfect look that is trending for fall. This top is a little bit on the boxier side but still runs true to size. I am wearing a small.

#2 Black Paige jeans.

Normally Paige isn’t my go-to denim brand. However, this style has a higher waist than some of the others I have tried which I am all about. They are super opaque black and I love the asymmetrical raw hem detail at the ankle. They tend to hold their shape and run true to size if not a wee bit small. I normally wear a 28 across the board and these felt better in a 29. If you have never tried Paige denim before, they are worth a try and one of the only black denim options that I saw today.

#3 Topshop Wide leg culottes jumpsuit

This whole look has a 70’s vibe going on from top to bottom and I am totally digging it. Always looking for that perfect high/low wardrobe I am a lover of some Topshop items. I love culotte jumpsuits and as soon as I saw this one I knew I needed to try it. It is the perfect “buy now wear now” piece and runs a little bit big. I love that the dots aren’t perfectly circular making the print more modern and less preppy.

#4 Blank NYC Suede Moto Jacket

This is a re make of last years big seller and it is back! I love the rich caramel color and it is a great neutral contrast to the black and white print. This jacket is great by itself with just a t-shirt and jeans and it also is available in a steel grey! Jacket runs a little bit small because the suede doesn’t have much give. I am wearing a medium here.

#5 Rag and Bone open toe sandal bootie

The heel is the perfect height, the block heel is great for comfort but FYI this is an investment shoe. I love small details and the suede covered buckle is one of my faves. This shoe runs a little bit small, normally I wear a 7 and I would need a 7.5. If you are looking for an out of the box shoe for fall, this is it!

#6 Joie Sweater

This sweater is a little bit 70’s and a little bit Jane Jetson and I love everything about it. It is so much better on than on the hanger. The color scheme is perfect for fall. The ruffles give the illusion of a more inverted triangle look (meaning it makes my waist look smaller than usual) so I REALLY love that. This would be perfect with white jeans for a winter white look or a really clean dark skinny denim.

#7 AG Burgundy Farahh skinny jean

Of course these jeans are perfect with the above sweater but they are also so great just on their own! They are a higher rise (awesome) the stretch is great without feeling like a legging and everyone needs this color in their bottoms wardrobe for Fall. These jeans run LOOOOOONG. So unless you are super tall, they will need to be tailored but guess what?? Alterations on these jeans will be free!

#8 BP Grey Mule

If you have seen my instagram for the past couple of months, then you know that I can’t get enough of the Mule trend. So simple yet edgy, this grey mule is going to be the perfect addition to my collection. The chunky heel makes them more comfortable for the high instep and you cannot beat the price. Also available in black and red too! Perfect with dresses or denim!

#9 Articles of Society raw hem denim

Articles of society denim have slowly become a go to brand for me and my clients. Fit, quality and price are all pretty great. The rise is more mid-rise and sometimes they run a little bit big so don’t be surprised if you have to size down.
If you need a good basic denim, the raw hemmed jean is it. These are certainly worth a try.

#10 BP oversized varsity inspired sweater

This very inexpensive sweater has a flash dance vibe that I just can’t get enough of. Can be worn a little off the shoulder or not and has the cutest crisscross detail in the back. Can’t beat the price either!

#11 Steve Madden Pearl embellished Mules

Because they are mules and they are everything I need in my life. Comfortable, the perfect way to dress up my simplified wardrobe and a little bit more feminine than I usually try.

#12 Alice and Olivia Velvet Tuxedo Jacket

Hello Menswear trend…you are here. How amazing is this blazer. That blue and black combo is so modern and I love the juxtaposition of texture with the velvet and the satin lapel. Beware…it’s an investment piece but would be fabulous with jeans…(shown here) or over a black jumpsuit for a night out or maybe with a lacy bralette if you are going for a more sexy menswear vibe. This jacket runs a little bit small so make sure to size up!

#13 Rag and Bone Tech Denim jeans

Rag and Bone has been my go to brand for jeans for the past couple of years because they fit so well. The tech line has lots of stretch and holds their shape and bonus…they are super comfortable. This style is a higher rise than my others with a 10” rise so they are great for gals with a long torso or gals that want a super high waisted denim. They have a cut hem, which means they have been scissored across the bottom as opposed to the raw hem jeans I talked about earlier that have had their hems taken out. These jeans run true to size!

#14 Trouve Leopard Jacket

The texture is amazing and it is such a unique statement piece for fall. Edgy with jeans or over your LBD. I paired it with this rich red Silk DVF sleeveless blouse for a pop! Runs a little big through the shoulders and does have a modified peplum detail in the back. Here I go adding that feminine touch again…but I do like it!

#15 Good American Denim

Have you heard about the jeans that Khloe Kardashian “supposedly” created? Enter Good American denim. This brand surfaced about 4 months ago to Nordstrom floors. Being a curvier girl, I tried these on immediately in every style I could. The rise is high, they will grab your curves and they will fit like a glove. Normally I wouldn’t gravitate towards this light of a denim but I loved the destroyed ankle detail so I figured they were worth a try and I really do like them. This brand runs true to size to a little big due to how high it fits on your waist.

And there you have it peeps! I am sure over the next few days I will find even more faves because that happens every year. FYI, if you are not a Nordstrom cardholder, you will have to wait until the public sale to shop which starts July 27th. But if you don’t want to wait that long and if you need some help navigating this massive sale, drop me a note at abby@abbywoodwear and we can chat about the 3 personal shopping options available for this sale only! Happy shopping!

 

The secret formula to nailing that “Off the shoulder look”

 

It’s Summer….finally. I have been waiting months, to be able to break out some of the fun tops that I got for our Cabo trip and finally the temperature is to a point that I can! As a 30 something girl, I have been on again off again with wondering if I should be wearing the “off the shoulder crop top style tops” other than for resort wear. But, being a stylist and someone that can usually find a solution to a fashion predicament, I finally figured out how to make it work and make it look appropriate.

 

Step 1: Find that off the shoulder or cropped shirt that has enough elastic around the top that it will STAY DOWN. There is nothing worse than wearing a super cute shirt, only to be pulling it down all day. I speak from experience on this one. When you find that top you love, try it on (obviously) and do some arm lifts. If that top is staying in place, you might have a winner.

 

Step 2: Find the crop top that works with your body type. Some are fitted and some are blousier. Pick whichever style YOU feel comfortable in because if you aren’t, it will show. Personally, I gravitate to a blousier feel with this style. I found this shirt before we went to Cabo and fell in love with the blue and white shirting fabric and the tiny little poms too. This top is totally out of the box from my normal attire but I do love it. Find it here.

 

Step 3: Find the perfect strapless bra! Girls, if it has been a while since you have been fitted for a bra, please invest some time in yourself and do this. A well-fitted bra can make all the difference in the way you look in your clothing. If you need help with this, I am at your service. Once you find the correct sized bra, make sure you get yourself a strapless bra as well! This can make or break an off the shoulder crop top look. This is my VERY FAVORITE STRAPLESS BRA that you probably need to get immediately. 

Step 4(And the secret sauce to making this look work): Find a great pair of high waisted jeans! The most polished way to pull this style of top off is without hardly any (or without any at all) skin showing. You will be showing enough skin at the top with those gorgeous shoulders on display. High waisted jeans are just the trick to cover the tummy, slim out the waist and balance the boxy look of off the shoulder or crop top styled tops. I love these high waisted jeans that I got at Addierose. Did you know they and my friends at Scoobie are having fun anniversaries this summer? Read all about it here. Another place I have had extremely good luck finding high waisted denim is Madewell. With inseams ranging from 8”-10”, there is something for everyone no matter what size your torso!

 

Final step: Accessorize with a belt or statement necklace. Either of these will work as that finishing 3rd piece to your look. I chose this fun silver and gold statement piece from Scoobie.  love mixed metal and I felt like this necklace kept my entire look a little bit edgier, which is what is true to my personal style. And isn’t that what it is all about?

 

Are you thinking about trying this combo? With the right formula, maybe you should!

Happy Birthday AddieRose + Scoobie!

If you know me, then you know that working with local business owners is one of my favorite things about being a stylist. Over the past couple of years, I have had the chance to meet and become friends with some pretty amazing boutique owners in Kansas City. Two of my faves? Meagan Doyle, owner of AddieRose and Sarah Jabbour, owner of Scoobie. Meagan and Sarah hand-pick special and unique trends for the women of Kansas City and they both have pretttttttty great taste. These girls offer a selection of styles that range from edgy to feminine. If I pop in to either location, I know that I will find something special (and at a friendly price too!)

As my business has grown, I have had the opportunity to partner with Meagan and Sarah on projects, events and client shopping. Building community relationships within the KC fashion industry is extremely important to me and I am so happy to have these gals as friends and colleagues.

So…..when I heard they were both getting ready to celebrate some pretty big business birthdays, I couldn’t wait to help spread the word of ALL THE FUN THAT IS TO COME! Meagan and Sarah want to say a big HUGE thank you to KC for keeping their doors open! How you ask?? The next 10 weeks (that’s right I said 10…pretty much the whole summer) will be filled with giveaways and promos just for you! Then, there is going to be a big summer birthday bash on Saturday, August 5th! And you guys are of course all invited.

To kick off their 10 weeks of fun, they are hosting an event on Saturday, June 3rd! Scoobie will be popping up at AddieRose all day long with sips and discounts for all! Hope you can make it!

 

Now….About this look. I thought it would be fun to see how my flatlays come to life. This is exactly what I do for my clients to help them remember certain looks and to help inspire them to play with their style!

The Look

 

IRL Look

I love to balance my normally modern minimalist style with some feminine details. A pairing I can also find from AddieRose and Scoobie. Something else I love? Styling unexpected color combos…..just like this! Grey and orange is not something I would normally do, but it totally works. I balanced the edginess and muted tone of these grey deconstructed jeans with this feminine orange top with (gasp) ruffles. There is something about rips and ruffles that make me happy. I pulled the look all together with some silver jewels and my new watercolor clutch!

Outfit deets:

Denim: Flying Monkey Grey Rippies/AddieRose

Top: Orange ruffle tank/Scoobie

Jewels: Silver choker and bracelet/Stella and Dot

Clutch: Watercolor Vegan leather foldover/Anthropologie

Shoes: Mules/Nordstrom

Stay tuned in the next coming weeks for more unexpected and fun combos from these two boutiques! And if you can, always support local!!

 

 

 

 

Rock Chalk Jayhawk! Charlie Hustle is now selling your fave KU shirts!

It’s time for the big dance! If you are a basketball fan, then you know what that means. If you are a Kansas Jayhawk…then you LIVE for this time of the year! As a devoted Jayhawk fan and stylist, I am always in search of cute game day gear. So when my friends at Charlie Hustle contacted me to let me know that they FINALLY clenched the license to sell KU stuff, I couldn’t wait to share the great news with you!

When I was in college, I always looked forward to visiting Allen Fieldhouse, the home of the Jayhawks basketball team. There was something so special about being amongst my fellow students and cheering the hawks on for a W that made me very happy…and still does! When my husband and I first started dating, one of our favorite pasttimes was going to games. When tournament time came around, we used to go to all of them! Basketball games were a regular activity in the month of March and we loved every minute of it. Now, game days have become more and more of a social gathering. This social activity has created a whole new category of fashion. Game day Style. Whether you are going to the game or meeting friends out for a watch party, there are lots of fun ways to look stylish! And if you are a lover of Charlie Hustle (like I am) I have BRAND NEW options for you to wear for the next big game on Thursday!


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where can you get these awesome amazing new shirts???

If you live in KC:

Charlie Hustle Store 

Scheels

Made In KC

The Bunker

Halls

Ulah

If you live in Lawrence:

Sharks Surf Shop

 

STYLE THAT T-SHIRT.

Whenever I wear a t-shirt, I always try to add a little pizazz to my look. Here are a couple of ways to jazz up your new

Roll it up! Try rolling the sleeves in a thin roll to show off those arms.

Tie it up! Yes t-shirt knots are completely acceptable now. Done correctly, this look can nip in your waist. Try a side knot or a front knot!

Remember the third piece! Add a coordinating plaid or checkered printed button down. Try layering the shirt over your t-shirt with the buttons unbuttoned and roll up the sleeves. OR for an edgier look, tie the shirt around the waist.

Show your sneaker game. Don’t ruin this look with your old running shoes. Add a street shoe like a slip on sneaker to keep it casual AND stylish.

The sweet sixteen is happening soon! Make sure to go grab your new Charlie Hustle KU shirt before they sell out…because they are so great, they most likely will! RCJH!

 

 

 

 

Sneak Peek: Anaphora + Abbywoodwear

Is it Spring already? Not quite, but the weather might make you think differently. This unusually pleasant and rather amazing weather has me all sorts of excited for spring style sessions and I am kicking off the season with a shopping event at one of my favorite stores: Anaphora! Never been? Well let me show you around!

 

From the moment you walk in, the shop is stunning from fixtures to merchandise. You can shop luxurious fabrics and unique designs from all different price points but all have a modern minimalist theme. It is one of my go-to places to shop because I can always find something unique and stylish.

What does modern minimalism mean in the fashion world? Think basics that make a statement. Every once in awhile you might see an item with a modern pattern, but most often these pieces are simplified designs in solid colors that make a bold statement. Whether the statement is made with an unexpected drape of a fabric, curious style lines, interesting necklines or the perfectly un-perfect hem, these pieces speak for themselves in a daring yet refined way. Because of my background and love for garment design, I tend to gravitate toward modern minimalism in my own personal style. When you can see the creativity that goes into the design it makes that piece distinct. To the naked eye, some might see this style as boring but to me they are visual pieces of art. They make people feel special.

So if you are not yet familiar with this local shop, I would love to introduce you! My friends at Anaphora have exquisite taste in style and have curated a shop with extraordinary pieces that have meaning and true style. So please join us for champs and a sneak peek of spring trends and brand new merchandise hand selected just for tomorrow ! You will not want to miss out!

 But until then, here is a little bit about my favorite brands they carry and pieces they have right now!

 Third Form

Australian brand that centers on minimalist sophistication, urban edge and the female form. These pieces will have more structure, texture and shape. It’s all about the fabric and the design. Each piece makes a statement by itself. In line with trends for Spring ’17, this little off the shoulder top is perfect for day and night.

Just Female

This scandinavian clothing company carries unique basics that can easily transition from day to night. This brand has a way of making a trend piece, translate as timeless. You know how much I love 3rd pieces and I loooooove this suede jacket. It is lonely and needs a great home. It is a size L and will be your very best friend for the rest of your life. Also, it’s a steal and it will literally go with everything.

 

Also, this navy blue boyfriend style bomber jacket is one of my favorite pieces in the store right now. If you don’t have bomber yet, you need one and this one is perfect.

 

AMO

Real denim with edgy flair. Don’t expect to experience a legging jean with AMO. These jeans are the real deal. I wasn’t sure about them when I first tried them on, but I have to admit I really liked the non stretch feel. Then I turned around and the pockets made by “backside” look smaller and tighter than it ever has in a pair of jeans. Loved the raw edge look at the bottom too. Size up in this brand!

 

 

 

 

 

 

English Factory

Darling pieces heavy on trend. My favorite was this bell-sleeved sweater that will be perfect for Spring.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And here is a little sneak peek of one the pieces that I am super excited about that won’t be available until tomorrow evening….

Off the shoulder, stripes and perfect with a white jean. I am in love.

See you tomorrow!

 

 

 

 

Buy a Heart, Save a Heart with Charlie Hustle

 

 

December 27 has always been a happy day to celebrate the important people in my life. It is my husband Scott’s birthday AND my parents’ anniversary. This past December 27th however, went a little bit differently. The day started pretty normal. I made arrangements to go to lunch with Scott to celebrate his birthday. My mom and dad (being the cutest couple ever), had big plans. My dad isn’t much of a shopper but loves to gift my mom a little something special each anniversary. After shopping, they planned to continue their annual tradition for dinner at their favorite restaurant, Houston’s. Then in an instant, everything changed. I received a phone call from a nurse in the emergency room at Overland Park Regional Hospital to let me know my dad was having a heart attack.

If you know me well, then you most-likely also know my dad because I talk about him a lot. He’s a genuine family man with a heart that only knows kindness. He’s a healthy guy too. He doesn’t smoke or drink and because of my wonderful mother, eats a very healthy diet. He’s 70 (a young 70 though) and still works because he loves it. Oh and he also walks over a mile almost everyday. He’s just not the type of person you would expect to have a massive heart attack.

We rushed to the hospital to be with my mom while my dad received excellent care from a cardiologist that “just happened” to be at the hospital that day. He received a stint to open his artery and was taken up to recovery. But, the stint failed and he was whisked right back to surgery. After waiting for what seemed like hours, we were finally able to meet with the Cardiologist. My dad was stable, but to protect his heart they decided to do a newer procedure to rest his heart and hopefully ensure a full recovery. The next part became very technical: the doctors implanted an Impella, also called the world’s smallest heart pump. This device would hook on to his left ventricle of his heart and would continue to pump his heart for the next 4 days. He would have to stay in ICU and lay completely flat without much movement – which resulted in some very uncomfortable days. Special technicians oversee the patient while they are hooked up to the machine to ensure it is working properly. It is a fascinating device, it’s a big deal and ultimately it saved his life.

 

Why am I sharing my story with you? Because innovative technology like this would not be available if it were not for the continued support and donations made to foundations such as the American Heart Association. Every February, Charlie Hustle teams up with the American Heart Association to raise awareness on heart health. The partnership was launched in hopes of raising awareness, to help people in need and to support advanced research methods that make technology like the Impella a reality. When the Charlie Hustle crew reached out to me to see if I wanted to help spread the word of this campaign, I obviously jumped at the chance!

Charlie Hustle has created a collection of apparel and accessories and 25% of all sales will be donated to the American Heart Association. Everyone loves Charlie Hustle shirts – especially when they’re “Special Editions”! The brand is the essence of KC cool for all ages. With the popularity of athleisure style, these items are perfect with those new sneakers you just got (that you do NOT wear to the gym). Plus, if you buy one of these awesome shirts you have the perfect thing to wear on Valentine’s Day! Sooooo…cool t-shirts AND donating to an amazing cause that helped to save my dad’s life? Sign me up.

 

The Collection 


 

 

 

 

The classic Charlie Hustle $32

Women’s cut with scoop neck and more fitted look $32

Raglan Baseball style tee $40

The cutest hat ever $48

Tees for your kiddos $28

Onsies for the babes $24

Where can you grab your special addition Charlie Hustle Merchandise? Through the whole month of February, these items can be purchased online or at the Charlie Hustle Plaza locations. While supplies last, these items will also be available at The Bunker, Made in KC, and Scheels. But seriously, they are going fast and you only have until the end of February before they are gone.

 

My dad had his one-month check up with his cardiologist yesterday. He will be doing one more procedure for another blocked artery in a couple of weeks but other than that his prognosis is good. My dad has always said that he’s a very lucky guy. On that particular day, he was lucky he recognized something was not right with his heart. He was lucky he was with my mom who rushed him to the emergency room. He was lucky there was a hospital nearby. He was lucky the cardiologist was on-site at that moment. And, he was lucky that there was team of doctors and a special machine that helped save his life. Many don’t realize that heart problems can sometimes be hereditary and silent. You can try your best to live a healthy lifestyle, just like my dad, and still have a problem. You can have your yearly physical in the morning, receive a clean bill of health and still suffer a massive heart attack that afternoon – yep, that also happened on 12/27. Whether you are a man or a woman, do yourself a favor and be aware of your family’s heart history and your own heart health. Then, go grab one of these t-shirts and support the efforts of Charlie Hustle and AHA. Then tell all your friends to get one too. Then have those friends tell their friends….you get the idea.

Small efforts can equal something bigger than you know. Buy a heart, save a heart.

 

 

 

Tips for packing smart AND stylish

 

 

Soooooo….how many times have you packed for a trip only to end up taking your entire closet (including 10 pairs of shoes)? Then you get to the airport, weigh your luggage and its past the max weight. Finally you arrive to your destination and you realize you are spending hours in your hotel room trying to decide what to wear each day. This is a far too familiar scenario for many people and can take the fun out of traveling. I have heard this time and time again, which is why I devised a plan to help my clients with packing! So far, everyone has loved it! When my friends at Better Kansas City asked me to come chat about travel packing I was like OF COURSE! Check it out.

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Are you going on a trip soon? Here are some helpful tips on how to pack smart and be stylish on your next trip!

  • Check the weather
  • Analyze your travel plans day by day or by event to determine what you need to pack
  • Add up the total number of looks you need
  • Choose a neutral color pallete to maximize more looks from fewer items. Everything will match!
  • Put together a working wardrobe for your entire travel time and choose head-to-toe looks for each day/event from travel day up until the day you return.
  • Photograph them for future reference

Why a color pallete?

Because when you are traveling you want to enjoy it…not worry about what you are going to wear! My fave color pallete to use is neutral colors like black, white and denim and then pop in a color! Keeping the color pallet neutral, makes it super easy to build multiple looks from minimal items because everything goes together! Adding that pop of color will help each look special. I especially love this pallete of black, white, denim and BLUSH! If you live in the KC area, Anaphora is a fantastic destination for shopping for this exact thing.

Extra Tips

-Pick neutral shoes that will coordinate with almost anything

-Roll your clothes in your suitcase to save space. This will keep away the wrinkles!

-Pack your shoes last! They fit great in the corners and crevices of your clothing.

 

Click here for even more travel hacks!

 

And because I have gotten so many questions about what I wore, here’s a close up and some details!

Top || Who What Wear by Target

Black Denim || Nordstrom

Boots || Marc Fisher

Necklace || Stella & Dot

Need help getting ready for your next trip or curious to know more details? Let’s chat!

 

 

 

 

 

 

4 spring trends spotted at the Golden Globes and my faves

Yes I realize that the golden globes were over a week ago, but I didn’t want to miss a chance to share some of the award winning fashion that I saw on the red carpet. One of the reasons I love fashion is because it is a language I understand. Each season, designers follow trend and color guidelines and create based on their own interpretation. These common guidelines create continuity. This makes it much easier to identify what is “on trend” For example, a single trend can be manipulated in many ways and showcased in different styles. This gives us so many options to wear a trend and also allows us to make the trend our own! Hello, personal style!

Many of us look to celebrities for style inspiration and I especially love to see what they are wearing at award events. The designer gowns are fresh and sometimes straight from the runway. A perfect place to identify what is going to be hip this coming season is watching the red carpets to see what the stylists have dressed their clients in.

Top Trends spotted:

Cold Shoulder

Metallic and neutrals

Modern Vintage Glam

Minimalist accessories

First up! I loved Emma Stone’s pale pink Valentino gown. Not only do I love her, I loved that she took a risk. Most redheads think pink is out of the question for them but with the right shade, it can work. Side note: you do have to love the color pink. This dress was a transparent pink with metallic silver stars, which certainly added a hint of whimsy. The deep plunge in the front was perfect and because she is petite, the knife pleats in the skirt lay just right. If you have hips, knife pleats can add volume instead of slim. The dress was a statement in itself and didn’t need much accessorizing. The subtle choker drop necklace was the finishing touch.

My next fave was Drew Barrymore in Monique Lhuillier. The metallic jeweled gown had a vibe that read a little bit vintage but a little bit disco. The fabric itself was a statement and the peek a boo shoulder made it modern. She had a naked décolletage and wore only statement Harry Winston chandelier earrings. Stunning stunning stunning.

Both of these gals took the minimalist approach to accessories and minimalism just happens to be one of my all time favorites. It is the simplest way to look chic. Stay tuned for my next blog talking about how to make minimalism happen…if you are into that thing.

Do you have a special event coming up and feel like you have nothing to wear? Let’s get together and and find the perfect look that will be flattering (of course) and make you feel like the bell of the ball!

Cheers to 2017!!

2016 was filled with so many firsts for my little business. It was my first year styling full time, my first time styling a professional magazine photo shoot, my first magazine column, my first time on TV, my first full year of blogging and the first time I was actually unbelievably happy in my career. Most of these firsts didn’t happen just because. They are the product of hard work, amazing support and a network of outstanding people that believed in me.

Flashback to Jan. 2016…I had just left my corporate (we will use that word loosely) job to start a new adventure of working for myself. I was scared, nervous and very uncertain of what would come of it, but I was also hopeful. Although it doesn’t always make sense, I do believe that sometimes things happen for a reason.

Now after 34 years, I have finally found what my passion is and have finally found something that doesn’t feel like work. I am so very grateful for what Abbywoodwear has become in just one short year and it is largely in part because of you! Thank you for supporting me throughout 2016. Stay tuned in 2017 for more posts about style tips and tricks from your favorite personal stylist! Now…on to watch the Golden Globes!

5 Secret Tips for finding great fitting Denim

If you are a girl, you know that finding the perfect pair of denim can be tough. With so many different cuts and styles out there where do you start?

With Fall finally here, I have received many inquiries in regards to finding the perfect jeans! Unfortunately, I don’t’ have a definitive answer for everyone. I wish that the “sisterhood of the traveling pants” pants…actually existed. But alas, all jeans fit differently and in order to find the best pair for you, you have to try them on. But, in hopes of making your next jean shopping trip more successful, I have put together a list of tips and tricks to help you on your quest! Happy shopping!

 

How to find the best fitting denim

 

Fabric content-check the tag for fabric content. 100% cotton will stretch and sag and usually won’t bounce back until you wash them again. Always look for at least 3-5% lycra. Elasticity will extend the life of the denim and help it to keep its shape after wearing them.

 

Look for the straight of the grain– make sure the fabric is cut on the grain. You can tell by looking at the denim and checking to make sure the fabric is straight. Look for the faint vertical line in the weave of the denim. It should go from top to bottom and not horizontal into the seam. Most premium denim will be cut on the grain. You will be able to tell right away if it isn’t because the seams will twist as you wear them.

 

Size doesn’t matter-every brand runs differently because they all use different fit models. You may be a size 28 in one brand but a size 30 in another. So try not to pay attention to the number and focus on fit. Always take at least 2 different sizes in the dressing room to try.

 

The sit-jump test– you might think it is silly but I always tell people to jump up and down in the dressing room. Denim with stretch can sometimes have a mind of its own and can shift as you wear it. So sit in them and see if they are comfortable. Then, jump up and down and see if the stay in place.

 

Don’t shimmy into them– Nowadays, jeans have a lot of stretch in the fabric. In order to make it work with you and not against you, try this trick. When you are putting your jeans on, pull them up from the waistband in the back. Once they are situated around your backside, slide your hands towards the front and pull up. This should ensure that the inseam of the jean is where it should be and will give you the best fit.

To give you a head start on shopping, below are a couple of my favorite denim finds this season in all different price ranges!

If you are on the curvier side, or prefer more of a mid to high rise jean…try Jag, KUT or NYDJ.

Once you have found the perfect pair of jeans, make sure to follow these steps:

  1. Never put them in the dryer-because you are looking for denim that has some elasticity in the fabric you never want to put them in the dryer. Dryer heat will eat away at the elastic causing the fabric to lose its elasticity or bounce. Line drying will protect the elastic.
  2. If your denim has a darker dye tint, try washing them inside out with ¼ cup of white vinegar. The vinegar treatment will help to set the dye of the denim to prevent fading. Yay!

Just in case you missed it…..watch here for my latest segment on finding the perfect denim!

Make sure to use these tips and tricks for your next shopping trip. And if you still can’t find any, don’t fret! You can always call your favorite personal stylist!  Call me! I am booking Fall Denim appointments now!

Have you found a great pair of jeans this fall already? I would love to hear what they are, where you found them and why you love them! Let me know in the comments below! Happy Shopping!

 

 

 

 

 

 

This bomber is “da bomb”…and you will never guess where I found it….

 

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Leather Bomber Jacket || RD STYLE || Tulip
Black Shift Dress || Lumiere || Tulip

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If you follow along with my Fashion blog in Herlife magazine, then you know that I love supporting local Kansas City businesses. In fact, in the August issue I wrote an article about some of my go-to places to shop. One of those places is Tulip! Locally owned, Tulip carries a carefully curated selection of on-trend, yet accessible items for a large age group. From cheeky novelty t-shirts to formal and feminine dresses, there is surely something for everyone. Right after I wrote my article, something super exciting happened. Tulip re-located to an EVEN BETTER location on the Country Club Plaza! It is now located at 316 Ward Pkwy which is towards the east side of the plaza right next to Seasons 52. Look for the darling black and white striped awning at the end of Ward Parkway and you can’t miss it!

Wanting to check out the new location and refresh some of my Fall wardrobe items, I decided to pop into Tulip! Right away, I fell in love with a short sleeved Olive faux suede shift dress, an off the shoulder denim blouse, a cream sleeveless sweater with open sides (super cute on too), plaid tops with pockets and much, much more. But, there were two pieces that stole my heart that day. Spoiler alert: they were both under $100!

I was in the market for a new LBD that I could wear dressed up or dressed down. When I saw this cute frock, I was immediately drawn to its simplicity and also its versatility. I love the wide white windowpane check that offers just a hint of sophistication. The fabric is high quality polyester so I can wash it myself and I know it won’t wrinkle. YES!!!

What was the other winning piece? This bomb bomber jacket in black vegan leather! The best part is that it is lined with faux shearling. I am cold all the time so this is going to be perfect for fall and layered with a sweater in the winter! Bomber jackets are everywhere right now due to the huge 90’s movement happening in fashion. If you aren’t into 90’s fashion but want to stay on trend, the bomber jacket is a great investment piece that can be worn with jeans or as a fun way to update a dress! That’s what I did!

If you are interested in adding some unique pieces that can’t be found at a chain department store, make sure to go see my girls at Tulip. They love what they do and it shows! And if you go…tell them your friend Abby said Hi!

 

 

I woke my skin up with EVER! My review on Ever’s 30 day challenge.

 

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For the past couple of months I had been contemplating some medical spa skin treatments…maybe even some Botox. After spending many summers at the pool in the sun, I have developed what they call a “1” in between my eyebrows and a fairly deep line in the middle of my forehead. I thought Botox was the only thing that would fix it. I also knew that it was going to be a big commitment and expensive. So before diving in, I decided to try a new skincare regimen called EVER.

But Abby…you always talk about style. Why are you talking about skincare? Because you guys…they aren’t all that different. The perfect outfit can make you feel like you can rule the world. A clear, radiant complexion will make you feel the same way! And…you wear your skin everyday! It is THE accessory for your entire look.

I had heard about Ever through various Facebook posts and in a couple of magazines. But, I have to admit, at first I was skeptical; this skincare line promised to make my wrinkles go away, take away the dark circles under my eyes, illuminate my skin and was supposed to be easy to use? I never thought I could afford something like that. But, the wrinkle in my forehead thought otherwise. So, when my good friend Jill reached out to me in regards to trying Ever, I decided to give it a try for 30 days. The company has a 45 day return guarantee policy. I had 45 days to decide if I loved it otherwise i could get a full refund. Even if I didn’t love it after 90 days I could still get full credit towards something else. So, I really didn’t have anything to lose.

 

My experience over the past 30 days with Ever

 

What is so great about Ever? All of it. To be completely honest, I have never had any major skin problems (great genetics from my mother), so…many of the skin care lines out there didn’t make sense for me to use. With a lot of unknown chemical ingredients, most of those regimens would have been too harsh for my skin. I have tried more natural skin care lines but…well…the results were always somewhat questionable. With Ever, I found a complete balance. And…they promised results. Sounded like a win-win for me.

Is it a simple regimen? YES. That is the only way I would continue to use it. It is a 4-step system but one of the steps is literally my new make up for the day so it is kinda like only 3 steps.

  1. Rebalance, the Cleanser.
  2. Reveal, the peel pads. Like a natural peel to show your radiant skin.
  3. Youthful (my fave), the face and eye serum. Stimulates your collagen and improves elasticity.
  4. Hydralift, the perfect moisturizer. I use that in the PM. But in the AM, I use Daylight tinted radiance moisturizer and I am so delighted that I actually CAN use this as my daily makeup!

There have been so many times when I have spent money on skincare and didn’t see any short term results so I just shelfed it. With Ever, I saw results within 7 days. My face literally looked like I had given it a giant drink of water. I was intrigued.

How does it work: By using LSR10, the products help to replenish depleted collagen. Did you know that by the time you reach 30 years old you start to lose a percentage of your collagen each year? Eek! The LSR10 serum is like a fountain of youth that helps to rebuild lost collagen. Yay!

How has it benefitted me? My wrinkles have started to diminish. Hallelujah! After only 30 days, you can barely see the “1” in between my eyebrows. The wrinkle across my forehead has started to diminish. It’s far from being gone, but I am thinking with the continued use of Ever, it eventually will.

What is my favorite thing about it? My fave thing about Ever is that I saw results right away and that I am STILL seeing results. When Jill first told me about the radiant moisturizer, she mentioned that I could just use that as my make up. I did not believe her. But, after 30 days, I can tell you that that is all I am using.

But I love to contour so how can I do that with just a moisturizer? I have a trick! I decided to use two different shades of the moisturizer to contour my face using a blender tool. Because I have oilier skin, I do brush a setting powder on top to set it and not fret it. It has been a life changer. Instead of doing 6 steps to put my make-up on, I am using 4 simple skin care steps and it is changing my skin from the inside out!

Why it works for me. My job has me running in a thousand directions a day, which means I try to add simplicity in my life whenever I can. If I only have to do 4 easy steps for my makeup before I run out the door then that is TOTALLY going to work for me. Also, I am constantly meeting with new people and looking my best is key. Ever makes my skin feel refreshed and makes it look radiant! (At least I think so.)

Does Ever sound like something you might like? Don’t take my word for it, chat with the expert! Jill is one of the founding specialists and she is offering complimentary consultations to determine which products would be best for your skin. You can email her directly: jill.hartman4@gmail.com

AND if you decide Ever is for you, you will get an “All Over Beauty Balm”. And you guys, this little vanilla cupcake pot of goodness is the best. It goes EVERYWHERE with me and makes my skin even more baby soft than it already is. It’s the perfect nude lip balm too and it really does smell like a vanilla cupcake. Yum. And just so you know, Ever is so great that they even offer a 45-day return guarantee. That is 15 more days than I needed;)

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I took the pic above yesterday…on my 30th day…and with zero makeup on. It’s not perfect but it feels amazing. Wake your skin up with Ever! I certainly did.

 

www.everskin.com/with/jillhartman

 

 

 

 

3 MUST HAVE Denim Styles for your Fall

 

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My Denim (I’m obsessed) || Rag and Bone
Frayed hem denim top || Rag and Bone
Twist Belt || Halogen
Open toe Bootie || Toms
Necklace || Stella & Dot

It’s September, which means it is time to break out the jeans! But…are you bored with your basic skinny jeans? Are you looking to add some variety to your denim wardrobe? Well look no further.


3 Fall Denim Trends that you need to try

  • Colored denim. Muted tones are everywhere. This includes lots of merlot, grey and olive. Some are clean and some are distressed, but all are appropriate. Treat colored denim as a neutral, just like regular denim. Pair with black and white or play with color blocking by adding a color on top. Since this denim is color treated, make sure to wash them in a quarter cup of vinegar inside out to set the dye.

 

  • Frayed hem. This is a newer trend that we haven’t seen a lot of until now. The unfinished hem is the modern update to the skinny jean. The hem should hit right below the ankle. For a cleaner option, try tight rolling the ankle. Voila! You now have 2 jeans in one.

 

 

  • Flares and Boot cut. From slim boot to flare, this trend is here to stay (and my all time favorite.) As a shorter girl, I look for any way to add length to my legs and a great flare does the trick. Try to stick classic blue denim without any distressing for the most updated look. Wear with a taller heel and even your legs will appear long and slim.

 

Which trend are you going to try? I would love to hear which trend you guys like the best! And stay tuned for my tips and tricks to find the best fitting denim! Coming up next!

 

 

 

 

How to shop Labor Day sales like a boss

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To many, Labor Day is a great opportunity to spend some time with family and friends. To retailers, it means sales, markdowns and clearance! Many have already started marking down their summer items to make room for Fall merchandise. But Labor Day is the OFFICIAL sounding bell for the end of summer fashion. So, if you are planning a shopping trip, be on the lookout for some great deals like this cute frock that I found at one of my favorite little shops AddieRose.

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When I saw it I fell in love with the print but I was skeptical that the style would be a good fit. I mean…I never thought I could wear a midi length dress. However, since the bustier style top is fitted, it totally balanced out the fullness of the skirt.

IMG_7805It was the perfect look for a baby shower I attended with my darling mother (seriously she is the best) and it was the perfect price too! Psst…it was only $10. Knowing that I wasn’t going to wear it for very much longer, the price seemed reasonable. A strategized purchase for sure.

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However, great deals can sometimes be deceiving so make sure you are shopping with STRATEGY. Try not to impulse buy just because it is cheap. Ask yourself:

Do I have somewhere to wear it?

Do I already own something to pair this with?

Is it worth the price?

If you can answer yes to all of these questions then go ahead, make the purchase!

End of the summer sales can be a great time to pick up a couple of staple items too. Here are a couple of items that you can hunt for this weekend!

White denim. Since I am giving you the green light to wear white denim all year round, if you can find some…grab them! They will most likely be heavily marked down. (yay!)

 

 

Colorful dresses. Many dresses can be converted from Summer to Fall by adding a jacket, vest or boot. Look for dresses made from a dressier material like polyester or a silk blend. Stay away from cotton and jersey which has a tendency to look super summery.

 

T-shirts. I LOVE a great t-shirt. The same with dresses, colorful t-shirts can be transformed into a Fall layering piece by adding a neutral boyfriend cardigan or blazer. Add a heavier piece of jewelry and you are set!

Or you could just grab a few of the t-shirts that I swear by at Old Navy.

Many boutiques will be trying to clear out their inventory to make room for Fall, so make sure to check them out. Also, Nordstrom is doing a summer clearance event that might be worth checking out.

 

Happy Holiday weekend!

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The romper I have been wearing NON-STOP!

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If it’s black, has pockets and goes from day to night…it is definitely for me. I scouted this piece for a client this summer and loved it right away. When I took it to her, we discussed how FUNCTIONAL it would be in her wardrobe and how she probably “had to have it.” Later that day, I was out doing my exchanges from her appointment and couldn’t stop thinking about it. That’s my trigger. If I can’t stop thinking about it…I buy it.

Long ago (in my novice shopping days) I used to ponder over an item for weeks. Usually by the time I decided to purchase the item, it would be long gone. So, I changed my thought to make more efficient buying decisions. Most people buy emotionally, including myself. I mean, if I can’t stop thinking about an item, I have made an emotional commitment with said item. Hence, that item becomes a new friendly face in my closet. It’s a win win. I buy it before it sells out AND get to enjoy styling the item right away too.

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Romper || Topshop Buy it now!

When I saw this black 70’s inspired button front romper with front patch pockets…I thought “Oh the possibilities!” Never mind the fact that I already own 2 other black rompers. This one was different. I will mention that it is from TOPSHOP which can run a tiny bit on the small side. However, I normally wear a size 6-8 and I bought a size 6.

Why I fell emotionally in love with this romper and why you need it too!

  1. It has pockets. Deep pockets. Who doesn’t love pockets?
  2. It has an attached string style belt that you can tie to nip in your waist. (Fave)
  3. The fabric is polyester crepe. Wears well. Washes well. And has just the slightest amount of stretch which means it is comfortable.
  4. Roomy through the thigh.
  5. Front button closure for easy in and out.
  6. Dressy enough with a chunky heel or dressed down with a sneaker or sandal.

Also, this piece is totally perfect for transitional weather. Right now, it is perfect all by itself. But, when the weather starts to chill out a bit, I will style it with a leather jacket and booties. Done and done.

 

More black rompers to try for now and for Fall!

Happy Romper hunting!

My new love affair with Club Pilates and why you need to “TRI” it!

I love summer. This summer has been filled with lots of barbeques, patio time and a few too many trips to the ice cream parlor. Let’s just say that for the past couple of months my diet and exercise regimen has fallen to the wayside. With fall quickly approaching, I knew I needed to get my booty back into gear but my traditional gym visits were becoming boring and stale. I have always been a runner but needed something to supplement my runs that would help with strengthening and lengthening my muscles. Enter Club Pilates.

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Spoiler alert! There is a treasure at the end of this blog post so keep reading!

I had seen a Pilate’s reformer before, but had never made the commitment to try the workout. Frankly, the reformer machine looked completely overwhelming and a little intimidating. Plus, it’s not like the people doing it were dripping with sweat so how could it possibly be a good workout? Right? Wrong.

Earlier this month, an old friend working at Club Pilates reached out to see if I wanted to come try it. Located in south Overland Park, it was extremely convenient and since I will pretty much try anything once, I obliged. I mean I didn’t have anything to lose. Little did I know, I was uncovering what has now become my new happy place. After my first class, I was sore in places that I have never been sore before. The “hurt so good” sore that makes you want to go back for more. So I did. Each time I went back the class was different, which is great because I get bored easily and so do my muscles.

Another plus? The instructors. Friendly and hands on (meaning they correct you if you are not doing something correctly). How many times have you been in a class…and you aren’t sure if you are doing a move quite right…but there are 50 other people in the class…so you can’t exactly ask the instructor if you are straining your neck or not…type of situation? This used to happen to me A LOT but, will never be an issue at Club Pilates. Even as a beginner, all of the instructors immediately made me feel at ease. And with a maximum class size of only 12 people, I get individualized attention, which is something I was missing in classes I did at the gym.

If you haven’t ever seen a reformer here are some action shots of my first class!

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I have now completed 8 classes and feel like a pro…not really but I do understand what the hype is and why people fall in love with the workout. Each class is different ranging from low impact to high impact (cardio jump). However, no matter what the class, I leave feeling stronger and leaner. My abs are being worked in ways they never have before. It is a complete and total body workout that can be done by women AND men of all ages because it is easy on your joints and you are stretching while you workout. Say what?? Needless to say…I am hooked. I mean it is basically like gymnastics for adults. And it is SO FUN.

 

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Not only do I love the workouts, but I have also fallen in love with the apparel available in the studio. Just like the workouts, the leggings they carry are for ALL AGES. As a stylist, I am always on the lookout for unique pieces that will work into my client’s wardrobes in more ways than one. So, with the athleisure trend hotter than ever, leggings are always high on my shopping lists. But, not just regular leggings, leggings that can be used in a workout or worn as “pants”. Yes, you heard me right. “Leggings as pants” is still a thing. I do have a couple of rules though.

  1. Make sure they are stylish: Black will always be functional and chic but if I am investing in athleisure leggings I am looking for something unique. Look for fun details or a printed fabric. If you go the printed route though, I would stick to neutrals.
  2. Comfort is key: As I have gotten older, soft fabric has become VERY IMPORTANT. If something isn’t soft and breathable I am not interested.
  3. Look for the higher waist: High-waist leggings are so good. I look for this style to prevent any muffin top issues. Stretch fabric can be deceiving so make sure you are buying the correct size. Also, look for wider waist-bands as they will flatten your tummy. I have the perfect style for you!

Keep reading for my fave new legging styles for Fall!

Onzie Black Snakeskin print legging.

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Obsessed. I invested in a pair of leather looking leggings last winter and I wore them all the time. Dressed up with booties or dressed down with sneakers, they were a major staple in my wardrobe. When I saw these, I HAD TO HAVE THEM. Not only will they function the same way as my other leggings but they work into my workout wardrobe too. And I love the variation…instead of just straight leather it has a fun print. Super stylish and comfortable. Here they are paired with a bright red Club muscle tank with gold foil print for workout wear.

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Here they are styled as a to-and-from look. You know…like to and from my favorite pilates studio.

 

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And here they are styled for Fall with a sleeveless sweater and block heeled sandal.

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And here with a basic denim shirt and leopard sneakers for when I am out running around! Talk about totally transitional leggings!

Onzie Olive Legging with mesh cutouts

Green pants

Not only is olive a major color for Fall but it is also one of my favorites. So when I saw the color spilling over into workout wear, they had to be mine. The fabric is soft and thinner but not the bad kind of thin…if you know what I mean. The mesh insets make them unique, stylish and breathable. They are like having a built in air conditioner in your pants. Brilliant. And they are going to look so cute with my black high tops and a black leather jacket later in the Fall.

Beyond Yoga Stirrup leggings

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With a high waist band that makes you look 5 pounds lighter and the softest, most buttery fabric I have ever worn, these leggings are my one of the greatest inventions of all time. The stirrups are great for my workouts and elongate my legs. If 90’s fashion is back, then of course stirrups are coming back in style too. Try these leggings. You will not be sorry. Also, how cute is Andrea, my friend and owner of Club Pilates!

All of these “must need” items are completely AWW approved and available at the Overland Park Club Pilates right now. If you love something and must have it, let me know and I can hand deliver to you! I mean everyone needs this PEACE PINOT PILATES tank.

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Because I love Club Pilates so much, I decided to partner up with Andrea to do an exclusive giveaway just for my readers! I am so excited to offer a complimentary TRI it week at Club Pilates!

You will receive a limited time 3 class sample pack. A $75 value! Take your choice of 3 Club Pilates classes in a week and receive an additional 30% off the first month of your membership when you join. Holy Moly this is a really great deal. AND we are also giving away one additional semi-private lesson for you and up to 4 of your closest friends! Totally free! Head over to my Instagram to read the rules! Good luck and hope to see you there soon!

 

 

 

Tips for the perfect Monochromatic Summer look

Last Friday, I went to visit my friends at Better Kansas City to do a segment on Fast Fashion. If you missed it, you can still view it here. Planning outfits for these appearances is always a little stressful. My outfit needs to be completely put together in a way that I still look and feel like myself. If I feel great about my look, I know I will look comfortable in front of the camera. For this appearance, I decided to wear one of my go-to summer looks.

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If you know me, then you know that I love a great monochromatic look. It is probably my go-to look for EVERY season because it always looks clean, simple and effortless. As the seasons change, the colors of my monochromatic looks change too. Since summer is definitely still here (hello heat index of 110 degrees today), my go-to monochromatic look is groundbreaking: White on white. I love the polished look of bright white from head-to-toe. Throughout my appointments this summer, I worked with clients on how to execute this look by looking past color and print and teaching them how to focus on design. Any monochromatic look is going to be based more on the design aspects of the pieces and white on white is no different.

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Outfit details:

Top: Off the shoulder top (sold out) //Post Edit

Denim: Articles of Society//Nordstrom

Shoes: Steve Madden//Nordstrom

Necklace: Pegasus Necklace//Stella & Dot

Tips for creating the perfect monochromatic look for the Summer.

 

Add an element of dimension. Try pairing pieces together that have different textures. Sometimes it’s difficult to match colors when wearing the same type of fabric. If you wear contrasting textiles, your look will be automatically elevated because the contrasting fabrics will look evident.

 

Look towards design. Choose tops with unexpected design details like unique necklines and sleeves. Choose bottoms with frayed hems or some subtle distressing.

 

Fit over Fashion. When white jeans are involved, fit is VERY IMPORTANT. Unfortunately, this isn’t the item you can pluck off the shelf and take home and expect it to fit perfectly. Invest your time into finding a pair of white denim jeans that make you feel great. NO, this doesn’t mean they have to come with a $300 price tag either. It means you should take the time to try on multiple pairs to find which one is right for you. I have had multiple white jean appointments with clients and because we take the time to analyze fit, we find a winner every time. Also..heads up that this is the time to find white jeans ON SALE!

 

Undergarments are key. Fabrics can be deceiving. At home, you may not be able to see through your white top or white denim. But, don’t be fooled! Outdoor sunlight is BRIGHT and will shine a light right through that gorgeous silk white top. Eeek. So…make sure you are wearing the proper undergarments for your white on white look. This means nude bras, nude camisoles and nude undies people! Not white. If you are in need of a refresh on any of these items, let me know. That is one of my specialties.

 

Finish with the perfect accessories. Shoes and jewelry can really make a statement with this look. Play with a trendier shoe style like a lace up sandal to jazz it up. Silver or gold jewels will complement white on white. Try mixing the metals for an edgier look.

Until next time…

AbbyWoodWear approved-My fave SHOE picks from Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Many of you know that I am a Nordstrom vet. For years, every July, I helped prepare for the biggest sale of the year…which you all know as the Anniversary Sale. It’s the one time of the year that full price items are marked down up to 40% off retail price in order for shoppers to get a head start on Fall wardrobing. If you have a Nordstrom card, you can shop NOW. If not, you can get a head start with a Nordstrom wishlist! Then, when the sale officially starts on July 22nd, you will be READY TO GO!

With so many great deals, the sale can be just a wee bit overwhelming. Never fear though, I am here to help you navigate the tents so that you can make the most of the sale. Also, here is a little insider Nordy tip: Many people order Anniversary items without trying on because they are afraid it will sell out. But alas, not everything is going to fit. So when they do return it, they return it quickly! Why?? Because they want to buy other Anniversary sale merch! So if you love something and your size is sold out, keep a careful eye on it with your online wishlist. Items can disappear and reappear within minutes! It is literally like playing the lottery. So buckle up for a wild ride!

First up…SHOES! This is a great opportunity to invest in fall shoe staples. If you are going to get anything at the sale this year, this is where I would start. Shoes do not go on sale as often as clothing does…so when they do you should take full advantage.

So what are the fall shoe trends? This year it is all about suede, the fancy fall sneaker, the over the knee boot, abundant booties (because they aren’t going anywhere) and the new unexpected trend of outdoor chic! I can already see myself in dark denim skinnies and those checkered Sorel wedge boots for a cool Fall day in KC or…our running errands in winter white and those taupe Puma sneakers with snakeskin trim…or even better…possibly out on the town in black skinnies and a black chunky sweater with the Vince Camuto cognac suede over the knee chunky heel boot! I am loving them all and I think you will too. Happy shoe hunting!

My secret to dressing high/low

But seriously. It would not have been my birthday if there weren’t cupcakes and a photo shoot involved. Thank goodness I have very understanding friends that oblige me in my shenanigans…like this.

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Even though my birthday has come and gone, I didn’t want you guys to miss out on one of my birthday outfits and all of the details too! As you can see, this isn’t exactly a weekday outfit. This black lace peplum top and long kimono are pieces that I would put in the category of “specialty items”.

Specialty items are the exact opposite of basics. Most of the time, my clients and I spend quite a bit of time rebuilding their closet by adding in everyday basics, which, don’t get me wrong, everybody does need. However, every once in awhile, you want to have something fun…something unique…something that makes you FEEL fancy. So that is where the specialty category kicks in. This category includes that amazing top that you might only wear 2 times a year. Or it might be that jacket that everyone loves but you only break out once in a blue moon. The problem with specialty items is that they CAN be expensive and many are weary of spending their hard earned dollars on something that is only going to worn a handful of times. So how do I make this work without breaking the bank?? It’s called FAST FASHION people. Stores like Forever 21, H&M, Zara are all examples of stores you can find fun, trendy, fashionable items for a fraction of the cost. If you only wear it twice, it’s OK. It was less than $25 (well a lot of the time that is the case anyways). This was the case with this outfit too! Pair fast fashion items with more investment pieces and viola! You have achieved the art of High/Low fashion.

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Leather pants|| similar here

Lace peplum top || Forever 21

Full length kimono || Similar here

Mules/the best shoes ever || Seychelles

Cupcakes || Smallcakes

 Rules for buying Fast Fashion

  1. Stick to tops. Pants and bottoms from these types of places are not made as meticulously and the fit will most likely not be great.

2. Stay away from cotton knit. The cotton tops will be super cheap but probably won’t wash very well. Even though it is not very much money, it is still money and you don’t want to have to throw it away after one wear! I mean…let’s at least try to get two wears!

3. Stick to fabrics like Polyester. This fabric is washable and can look more expensive.

4.Try it on. Some of these types of stores will only let you return for store credit if that. So, take a minute to try items on before going home. Please.

5. Black and white are always going to look the most sophisticated.

Are you still a little nervous about venturing into one of these stores? Don’t Fret! Take a friend…like me!

Until next time…

 

 

 


Cold shoulders and Mules FTW


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It’s MAY!!!! My favorite month of the year! Weather is starting to get warmer, flowers are blooming and it’s my birthday month! It is also the month that summer fashion really starts to make its debut. What summer fashion trend is ready to take the spotlight? Off the shoulder tops! This trend has been circling the scene since early spring but I feel like now is it’s time to shine because…

  1. Its almost summer and this is the perfect summer look
  2. It is so flattering on your neckline! Show off those shoulders girls!

I am especially in love with this petal pink number that I snagged for my trip to Ireland. The sleeves have the perfect amount of flutter. The length is shorter without being cropped which was a perfect balance to the flutter sleeve. And the fabric…super impressed. For a fast fashion item, this top was a thicker crepe material that didn’t wrinkle, was not see through and had the perfect amount of drape. Want to try this look but nervous about how to wear it? Here’s a tip. Most of these tops are a little bit more billowy. For a more classic look pair an off the shoulder top with a slimmer bottom like a skinny jean, jegging or pencil skirt. If you want to try a more boho vibe, try pairing with your favorite pair of denim flares. Also, if your neck feels a little naked, add some jewels. Because this neckline is square in shape, try a longer pendant style necklace to draw the eye down.

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I paired this sweet top with some white denim and my new favorite shoes…mules. What is not to like about them? The stacked heel is oh so comfy and the straps dip down lower than my ankle helping to elongate my leg…which as a shorty I really love (and need.) So sophisticated, mules are the new “it’ thing.

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Here are my go to “cold shoulder” tops and my fave mules. You need these in your life!

More about Ireland to come…stay tuned!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The new 9-5 uniform and the skirt you might need!

Lately, I have had quite a few clients shopping for wear-to-work wardrobes. These shopping trips include a sprinkling of casual wear too, but the 9-5 looks have been a major focus. In theme with what I have been shopping for recently, I thought I would share my view of “The New 9-5”.

 

For years, all women wore to work was power suiting. Lots of black and grey filled their closets…along with lots of gloom. As years pass, work places are adopting a more fun way of dressing and I am all about it. I mean, if you work in an environment where everyone dresses up in suits all the time, do not let me steer you away from owing a perfectly TAILORED modern suit. This is a staple and will serve you for years and years together and also broken apart as separates. But, if your work attire landscape has become a little more casual, then this is the perfect time for adding in some unique pieces and to add some color in your life!

STYLE TIPS FOR THE NEW 9-5

Tip 1: Look for conservative colors like black and navy that you can pop with brighter colors like yellow or red. Red and navy is a great combo and more conservative. The black and yellow combo has now emerged as a modern color combo. Take a chance and you might actually like it!

Tip 2: Stripes. Whether it is on top or on bottom, stripes are a great way to add a sophisticated print to your day. Don’t be afraid of horizontal stripes. They aren’t all bad, I promise. If you aren’t quite sure about it, TRY IT ON. If you still are not sure….text me.

Tip 3: Embrace White and Navy as your new neutrals. I especially love all of the white 3rd pieces that are available right now. These colors are perfect for spring and summer weather, and besides, you can never go wrong with a nautical look.

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Some of you may have seen this skirt that I posted the other day from a Lookbook styling appointment that I had with my cute, cute pregnant client. She loved the comfort, the versatility AND that it would grow with her throughout the duration of her pregnancy. No you guys, this is not a maternity skirt. I purchased it from the TBD department at Nordys (because being pregnant does not have to mean wearing something for only 6 months and then giving it away.) There are lots of “buy now wear later” options too. For example…this skirt:)

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LOOK DETAIL

SKIRT|| TROUVE

STRIPED T-SHIRT || STATESIDE

JEAN JACKET || JAG JEANS

SNEAKERS || CONVERSE SHORELINE 

BOOTIE || PAUL GREEN

EARRINGS || KENDRA SCOTT

NECKLACE || BP 

I loved this skirt so much that I went and bought it for myself! The stripes had me at hello. This skirt is comfy knit but heavy enough that it doesn’t show imperfections…kinda like budget St. John. I paired my skirt with a shorter, somewhat flowy, red sleeveless top to balance out the length of the skirt. Then, I finished it off with this amazing sleeveless long line cardigan. BTW, this trend is totally growing on me. You could also wear this awesome midi knit skirt with your new white sneaks I told you about in last month’s Herlife Magazine! Throw on a fitted t-shirt and you are casual chic.

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LOOK DETAILS

SKIRT || TROUVE

TOP || FOREVER 21

LONGLINE SLEEVELESS VEST || 1.STATE

SHOES || CORSO COMO DEL

CLUTCH || SCOOBIE

So all in all, this skirt was a great find; for me, my client and maybe even you! Are you ready to branch out and try the new 9-5 trend? I think you are. So….Just. Do. It.

KCFW

The past 2 weeks have been nuts! Lots of appointments, lots of shopping and lots of fun events! Being more involved in the KC blogging community has created so many new opportunities and I am so grateful. For example, I was lucky enough to attend all three nights of Kansas City Fashion Week AND sit in the front row (eeek!) with my new uber fancy camera to capture it all! It was totes amazing. I know many of you follow along with me on Instagram and Facebook and were able to see some of my favorite pieces from the shows. But, I wanted you to be able to see MORE. So here you go!

Thursday night

My favorite collection: Gypsy Black

Minimalist at its best. Lots of black olive and gold and leather details. Simple pieces in unique fabrications is totally my jam. I am a huge fan of simplistic design because it is easier to integrate the pieces into wardrobes without looking like I am trying too hard. Plus, the collection included olive green leather leggings. I need them.

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Friday Night

My favorite collection: Kiana Godsey

This was more of a visionary collection made of luxury designs and styles. Think sheer lace and chiffon paired with artistic elements like a gold lame leaf petal dress. Even though the pieces weren’t as wearable as other collections, the creativity and thought behind it was very evident. From dramatic hair and makeup to the perfect music; everything in this collection worked together cohesively to tell a defined story (which I absolutely loved.)

 

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My favorite collection: Lucia’s Sarto

Saturday night displayed A LOT of talented designers. But, if I had to choose my favorite, I would have to go with the Lucio Sarto collection from Nataliya Meyer. This designer has been working the KC fashion show circuit since 2007. I know, because she and I used to display collections at the same fashion shows. Her designs, always dramatic are constructed with the finest of skills. She is an impeccable seamstress and a true visionary for sure. The collection was everything I expected it would be and more. As a designer myself, I have the utmost respect for people that have the ability to make dreams come to life, and Nataliya Meyer is definitely one of them. FYI, she owns a studio by the Country Club Plaza and also does alterations…in case you are needing a fabulous tailor.2016-03-19 21.44.44 2016-03-19 21.42.39 2016-03-19 03.52.27

And Just in case you missed it on instagram…here are my looks from night 1,2 and 3!

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Top: Gracia from Nordstrom Rack

Leather Leggings: BlanK NYC

Shoes: Jessica Simpson

Jewelry: Soku and vintage

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Floral Jumpsuit: Forever 21 (sold out)

Shoes: Joie (sold out) similar one here

Jewelry: Scoobie and SOKU

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Dress: Made by Moi:) (Many years ago…but I thought I would take it out for a spin)

 

And thats a wrap! So excited that I was able to attend Kansas City Fashion Week and I cannot wait until the shows in the Fall!

 

Until Next time…

Styling for guys..yes it’s a thing

Styling…it isn’t just for women. Seriously. Guys like style too;)

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Recently, I have had quite a few people ask me if I style guys…and the answer, of course, is YES.

Back in my Nordy days, I spent a couple of years working on the Men’s floor as a personal stylist. I learned a lot about men and their shopping habits VERY QUICKLY. Some had style and some had zero clue as to what style was. As a rule, most of them didn’t like to shop or didn’t have the time. Which meant, when they did shop, they did it only twice a year. Being in the store only twice a year meant we had to cover a lot of ground in one appointment. Dress shirts, pants, suiting, casual wear, shoes, accessories…you name it we found it. I thought it was going to be overwhelming, but I also learned that men are fairly quick with decision-making, which made the process quick and concise. So, when people inquire about men’s styling I can confidently say, it isn’t a whole lot different than the way that I style and shop for my female clients. Many of my female clients also, do not care for shopping or do not have the time so our appointments tend to cover a lot of ground which is very similar to the way I shopped with my men’s customers.

However, at the end of the day, when working with any client (male or female), the main goal is to make them feel their very best, by offering expert advice in fit and style, saving them time and hassle of shopping blindly for themselves, all while…giving them the luxury of being able to do it in their very own home! AND, since I just finished a styling session with a gentleman, I thought I would give you guys a little peek into our appointment.

My client, we will call him “Mike”, is going on a vacation. Mike is a casual dad that works from home. His daily uniform consists of jeans, novelty t-shirts, hoodies and tennies. Mike is interested in updating his style a bit and decides to call me. After we chat, we decide this is the perfect time to do some personal shopping because just like me, Mike likes to wear new things when he travels. So fun.

Because Mike is a new client, we first do a closet audit appointment. (FYI The closet audit is not a requirement but it is a GREAT way to clear your head and your closet to help you focus on how we are going to evolve your style and fill in some holes) The audit begins. We weed out the old and outdated, anything that doesn’t fit correctly and anything that doesn’t bring him joy anymore. (I know…the last one seems corny but trust me, it works.) Next we colorize and categorize the keepers and make a shopping list of items to add back into his wardrobe. Mike is super jazzed at the end of this appointment because now he sees how much room he has and can focus on what he can really wear. He also notices how much room he has now to fill his closet with new updated clothing!

Next, Mike and I do a Pinterest Board Collaboration. I create a board, just for him and do an edited capsule of items I think he will like. Mike see’s the board and likes which items he is interested in trying. We chat about his shopping budget and from his feedback on the Pinterest board, my shopping spree begins.

At Mike’s next appointment, I bring all of my purchases over to his house for him to try on. Because of what I learned early on about working with men when styling, I know I need to be precise. Men want their clothing to be multi functional. They want quality. They want to be able to wear it for a lengthy amount of time without it wearing out. They want to be comfortable. Lastly, they want to know EXACTLY how to wear it.

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As I told you above, Mike is getting ready to jet set to Mexico. So, when I shopped for Mike, I capsule shopped. What is a capsule? It is a grouping of items that coordinate with each other in many different ways. I wanted to find items that Mike could take on his vacay that complemented each other, but I also wanted his new items to transition into his normal spring/summer wardrobe. Challenge accepted. I took Mike’s capsule to his home for his appointment. I gave him different looks to try, we talked through his likes or dislikes and talked him through some out-of-the-box looks to make him feel comfortable about trying something new. Mike made his final decisions and I packed up to leave. I did a couple of size exchanges and had everything dropped off at his house the next day, pressed, folded and ready to put into his suitcase. I went home and Mike went to Mexico…I really feel like he really got the better end of the deal. But, I was of course happy that Mike was traveling stress free, knowing he didn’t over pack, knowing exactly what he was going to wear each day and knowing he was going to look pretty good too. How did he know exactly what to wear you ask? I made him this nifty pinterest board to follow:)
Follow Abby’s board Mens- MD LBS SPRING 2016 on Pinterest.

 

In the end, Mike ended up with a 25-piece wardrobe capsule that did exactly what I wanted it to do: Update his style and take him from vacation to regular spring/summer wardrobe all while staying in his budget. Below is the EXACT capsule that I built for Mike for your viewing pleasure.

 

Do you have a guy in your life, or know someone that might benefit from this type of service? Send him my way!

Stay tuned next week for lots of coverage from Kansas City Fashion Week! as I am instablogging and blogging away as media for the event.

 

Until then…

How to nail the Athleisure look in 4 easy steps

As a thirty something girl now, I look forward to Sunday brunch like I used to look forward to a Saturday night out on the plaza. Back then, the perfect outfit was usually a recipe for a great night out. Now that Sunday brunch is my big event for the week, I of course still want to look stylish.

Almost every Sunday morning, my hubby and I have a leisurely brunch date at one of our favorite spots, First Watch. It isn’t a very fancy spot, but we love it. They make our fave breakfast and customize our crazy requests…(always sub strawberries for potatoes) and everyone literally “knows our name”. We take our time, as everyone should on Sundays, to relax and prepare for the upcoming week.

So what is the appropriate dress for casual brunching? Why athleisure of course! Athleisure is active wear functioning as everyday style. This phenomenon, has swept the world of fashion. But you guys, when I say athleisure, I am not just talking about throwing on your gym clothes and calling it a day. You still want to put some thought into your look. If you are wearing leggings, pair it with something unexpected and something you WOULD NOT normally wear to the gym. Athleisure may be comfortable but the goal is to exude style as well!

How to nail the Athleisure look in 4 easy steps.

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  1. Grab your leggings. Skinny leggings. Black or printed. Make sure they are a great fit. Black joggers will work too!
  2. Now, grab your favorite cable knit sweater or plaid shirt.
  3. Next, pull out some fun sneakers. Choose Converse over your actual gym shoes. This is KEY. You want to look stylish, not like you are coming or going from the gym.
  4. Finish with a stylish hat and simple jewelry.

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Now you are head-to-toe athleisure appropriate and comfortable for anything your weekend brings…including brunch!

Here a couple of fun athleisure looks to use for you to use for inspiration!

Until next next week…

Leather and lace + transitional wardrobe dressing tips!

It’s February. You are so OVER your winter wardrobe. Let’s be honest. It’s freezing one day and then 65 degrees the next! How is a girl supposed to dress for weather like this? That is where the concept of transitional wardrobe dressing comes into play.

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The weather yesterday was amazing but for dressing yourself it can sometimes be confusing. To me, 65 and sunny says SPRING! But, since the calendar still says February, it was the perfect opportunity to sport one of my new transitional looks. Leather and lace.

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I found these Blank NYC faux leather leggings on one of my many shopping trips to Nordstrom rack. I already own another pair of leather type leggings but they are totally different. I love these because they are a matte leather look.

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Leather is a fantastic transitional fabric because it can be paired with lighter weight fabrics to match the softer spring trends we are seeing. I paired these leggings with this darling lace top for a fun mix of edgy and feminine.

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How did I come up with this transitional look? First things first, transitional dressing can be simplified by starting with a color palette. This is the time of the year to start re-introducing color back into your looks. But, you don’t want to go overboard because after all, it is still Winter.

The color palette

black, olive, denim, tan, cream, blush, camel, navy, grey, red, stripes, lace, muted tones, gold and rose gold. Add Pops of leopard with accessories is also a fun way to transition winter looks to have more personality.

What items are great for this transitional period? Here is a simplified checklist of items that are perfect for this period.

  • A maxi cardi (long cardigan sweater) Look for lightweight knit fabrics in colors or prints. This pairs well with denim/pants now as an alternative to a coat or jacket when it is chilly. Wear over dresses in the spring.
  • Basic white blouse. This is a staple item. Can be a classic or casual. Wear now layered with crew neck sweaters or under cropped pieces. In the spring, wear with printed short or tied in the front over a dress or fitted pencil skirt.
  • Joggers. Modern take on a dress pant. Depending on the fabric they can be dressed up with a bootie or pump or dressed down with a sneaker. These are a fun alternative to weekend wear with a novelty t-shirt and the new white sneakers you need.
  • Wide leg trouser pants. Dressed up in the winter. In spring, wear with a sandal and light colored blouse for fresh look. Make sure they are tailored to the correct shoe. (about a half inch above the floor.)
  • Distressed boyfriend denim, black and white denim. These are the “all year round” kinda pieces.
  • Long-line vests. Add a tailored touch to any look. Pair with light denim or white denim, or dresses in the Spring.
  • White blazers, printed blazers or black blazers. These are all Staple item in my book. Wear them all year round. If you are looking for something more interesting, a printed blazer adds flare to dresses in spring colors or brings life to lighter colored bottoms.
  • Leather anything. Jackets, leggings, coated pants. Stick to black or neutral colors. If you are wearing it with jeans now, pair it with floral dresses or spring time colored clothing for an play on edgy and feminine.
  • Draped trench coat. This piece is a great now for chillier weather as a layering piece. Then, wear with tanks in the Spring as a statement piece.
  • Perforated booties. Booties are an all year round kinda thing but sometimes feel too “hot” in the spring or summer. The new perforated look is a play on light and airy springtime vibes. Open toe booties are acceptable now as well.
  • Olive green anorak. A unique alternative to a coat. Color is neutral to wear with lighter colors in the spring and a great layering piece while it is still chilly. Anorak style jackets cinch in your waist too to get that hourglass figure.
  • Chambray/denim blouse. Feel free to wear this with everything INCLUDING denim. Try to mix with different washes of denim to add depth to your look. Finish with a pop of color with jewelry or a bag.
  • Scarves. Add a light-weight or lighter colored scarf to darker colored clothing to brighten them up for spring.

Do not let this transitional period get you down in the fashion department! Play with what you have. Mix and match and see what kind of fun combos you can come up with..then take a pic and send it to me!

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Until next Friday…

4 tips to dress like Gigi Hadid..and my love for monochromatic looks

Have you ever wondered how Gigi Hadid always looks so put together? Well…

  1. She is a supermodel and she is around amazing designers on the daily.
  2. Her mother is the stunning Yolanda Foster who always looks timeless in her all white get ups.
  3. She employs a stylist, Monica Rose (whom I happen to adore.)

Monica Rose styles a long list of A-listers including: Jennifer Lopez, Giuliana Rancic, Mindy Kaling, the lovely Gigi and yes the Kardashians. She has a way with putting muted tones together to create some of the most jaw-dropping, sophisticated looks that I have seen all year. Her work is a daily inspiration to my personal style and how I style some of my clients as well!

While monochromatic dressing sometimes has somewhat of a masculine feel, you can fem it up with shoes, accessories and extra lady-like details. When I dress monochromatic I feel classic, put together, and chic…even when I am rocking a black V-neck t-shirt , which happens to be one of my favorite items in my closet. I know right, a plain black t-shirt. Sounds boring right? Nope. Because at the end of the day, it is more about the way you style that t-shirt that makes all of the difference. The same rule applies with monochromatic dressing. It is all about how you style the muted tones that will make your look head-to-toe chic. Think shades of grey, hues of blush, buttery creams and beiges, black on black, black on grey or white on white. If you are more feminine in you style, veer more towards the lighter colors like blush, pinks and greys.

Another reason this style is amazing? It is such an easy way to piece outfits together from your current wardrobe. Do you have black denim and a black blouse? Wear them together and turn heads all day. Add a statement coat, your favorite pair of booties and some striking gold jewelry to finish it off.

 

 

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Here are a couple of tips:

  • Look for different textures in your fabrics it will add more depth to your look.
  • Don’t worry if your blacks don’t match because you do not want the colors to match perfectly. (My grandmother taught me that years and years ago…she was a fashionista ahead of her time.)
  • Don’t over analyze what you pick out. That is the beauty and ease of this look. No guessing.
  • Be confident in your style. Walk with poise and self-assurance and others will never doubt you.

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Clickable guide of how you can get my look:
Save              vs.            Splurge


Do you like this style? If so, challenge yourself to try it one day this week. If you do, let me know in the comments below or share a pic with me!

Until next Friday…

 

 

 

 

 

 

7 Travel Hacks and a little resort style to go with it

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I know what you are thinking. Last week, I told you I wouldn’t be traveling anywhere warm anytime soon, and yet here I am with a glorious glow surrounded by ocean! No, I didn’t go on a spur of the moment trip. This is me (a couple months ago) when the bubs and I took a vacay to the Dominican Republic. We stayed at the Sanctuary Cap Cana in Punta Cana. Our resort was a castle (literally) and the staff was generous and kind. We had a great time celebrating our 5 year anniversary! Scott was a great sport and took some outfit pictures while we were there (I am such a lucky girl.)

 

Whenever I travel to warm locations, I spend as much time at the pool or ocean as I can. I love relaxing in the sun and I finally figured out that if you wear sunblock, you still get a tan. Thanks Mom for teaching me that. With that being said, I always pack quite a few cover ups. I especially loved this look. The neon coral color makes anyone look tan. The loose fitting, flowy, cold shoulder look was so comfortable. Normally you will NOT find me in a crop top, but when on vacation sometimes I break my own rules.These culottes were a great find too! They were comfy and didn’t pinch my sides or (ahem…love handles.) Since they were black I was able to wear them with a couple of different tops. (See last weeks post about black and white wardrobe travel capsules. )

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And a beach hat. ALWAYS pack a beach hat to protect your face. You can wear it on the plane and looks super chic.

Here are a couple of items inspirational of the ones I am wearing above. Hint: if you hover over the items, you can click on them!

 

Before we left for our trip I did a bit of research on how to make the most of my packing situation. Packing for travel to different countries can be overwhelming, especially when your destination is smaller and somewhat remote. What if you forget something? What if your shampoo spills all over everything? What if…what if…what if. It is highly unlikely you are going to find a Target next to your resort to pick up some essentials either. Soooo, to overcome this frightening overwhelm, I have put together a small list of travel hacks to keep in mind for your next adventure.

My genius Travel hacks

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  • Dryer sheets. I’m not sure if anyone really knows why, but sometimes traveling to places with high heat can make the clothes in your suitcase…well…a little stinky. Pack a couple of dryer sheets in your suitcase to keep your clothes smelling fresh.
  • Straws. Jewelry tends to get tangled when you travel. To prevent this from happening, loop chains through a drinking straw to keep them untangled.
  • Roll your clothes. Instead of laying flat, roll your clothing up like a burrito before packing it in your suitcase. Not only will you save space, but you will also save your garments from becoming terribly wrinkled.
  • Use a button to keep earrings paired together. I love to wear stud earrings. But, I am always afraid I will lose them. Find a button and use that as an earring holder to keep them together.
  • Use a large binder clip on your razor. Protect the blade of your razor (and your fingers) by placing a large binder clip on the end of your razor.
  • Saran Wrap over bottles with liquid. Prevent liquid from spilling all over the items in your suitcase by sealing the bottle with saran wrap. Place plastic around the top of the bottle and them screw the cap on over.
  • Stay hydrated. I always travel with an empty Nalgene bottle to fill up after I go through security. Flying can make a person very dehydrated so consistently drinking water before you leave will be a huge help. Because I try to drink 64oz of water a day all the time, having my bottle with me on vacay helps me remember to do this.

Hope these help you on your next vacay! Until next Friday…

 

 

 

 

 

 

3 tricks to make packing for your next tropical vacay a breeze!

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If you live in the Midwest, you are familiar with the cold weather we are experiencing this week. There is one word for it: brutal. Some of you are smart and taking vacations to escape the bitter cold. Let’s be real, sunshine is the best medicine for gloomy sub zero weather. However, since I am not traveling somewhere warm as soon as some of you, I am going to be living life vicariously through you by writing about resort style for the next couple of weeks!

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Whenever I travel, one of my favorite events leading up to it is PACKING. I know…most people think I am a little nuts when I say that. However, it is true. I am that girl that loves planning outfits for vacations almost as much as the vacation itself (almost). So, since I know that many of you are snowbirding the heck out of Kansas in the next month or so, here are a couple of basic tips for when you are preparing to pack for a vacation.

Trick 1: Always create a capsule wardrobe for your trip

What is a capsule wardrobe you ask? Think about a capsule wardrobe as a collection of a few essential items of clothing and accessories in classic styles that can mixed and matched to create multiple looks. When you are traveling, you need to be somewhat strategic because everything you wear needs to fit in a teeny tiny bag that is about 1/18th of your closet. Creating a travel capsule wardrobe is the easiest way to organize, plan and get the most out of what you are taking.

Trick 2: Packing in a basic color scheme.

My fave is black and white. Boring you say? Keep reading. Black and white look totally chic. It is a classic color combination that will never go out of style. Next, black on black looks ravishing (and it’s slimming.)  And, don’t even get me started on how much I love an all white outfit against sun kissed skin. It looks amazing. And ta-da…everything you have packed, goes together!

 

Trick 3: Bring accessories in gold and pops of colors

I love gold jewelry because it looks awesome and because it brings warmth to the skin. Also, think about packing candy colored jewelry, vibrant colored bags, totes and clutches. Not only do these bright colors look fab against black and white, but they will match all of your clothing.

Are you loving this idea, but wondering how to put it all together? Here you go:)

P.S. If you hover over the item it will show you the price. If you click on it, it will show you where you can buy! Genius.

 

Stay tuned for next friday because I am sharing some awesome packing hacks. I love hacks. Until next Friday…

 

Images in this post were provided by the talented Crystal Albo of C. Albo Photography

How to wear a Poncho and the ones you need!

Ponchos! Do you have one? If you don’t, you should. Solids, prints, cardigan style, over the head “sweater style”, ones with sleeves, ones without sleeves…the list goes on and on. With so many different styles out there, which one will be for you?

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Ponchos have been making a comeback for sometime now. As with the ebb-and-flow of fashion, this is a trend that will likely go in and out of style. But, right now it is an an easy piece that should be added to your winter wardrobe. The perfect piece for casual dinners, hanging out by your friend’s fire pit and roasting marshmallows, or just out running errands! It is amazing for wearing to the movies (I am always so cold in the theatre and this is basically like wearing a blanket. Score.)

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Ponchos are something EVERYONE can pull off as long as they pay attention to BALANCE. They look great with a tapered leg: skinny jean, leggings, etc. If you are on the shorter side, try wearing a shoe with more of a heel to add a little height to your look. Besides, adding height will make your legs look long. I am always up for that.

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Style Tips

  • Try wearing a coordinating long sleeve shirt underneath your poncho on those mild winter days instead of a coat.
  • Warning! Make sure your poncho isn’t so long that you are basically all poncho and no you.
  • To avoid the above, look for one that hits right below the waist or for one that creates a high/low look (hang higher in the front and lower in the back.)
  • Does your poncho have a cowl neck? Why don’t you try wearing your hair up in a messy bun. Having your hair up will help balance out the top half of your body. Watch this video from Popsugar to see exactly how I get my sexy messy top knots.

Here are a couple of my favorite ponchos right now

(and they are all under $100)

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  1. Michael Michael Kors Poncho (great color and love the flattering V-neck)
  2. WithChic Poncho Sweater (simple and chic)
  3. Two by Vince Camuto Poncho (casual and comfy)
  4. Charlotte Russe poncho (MAJOR SAVE)
  5. Minnie Rose poncho  (reversible and high/low style)
  6. Asos poncho (saved the best for last)

Which one is your fave? Let me know in the comments below! Until next Friday…

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WERK IT and the new pants you need!

My New Year’s Eve resolutions for 2016 included: giving up Mexican food (a lofty goal I realize) and working up a sweat on a consistent basis. So basically…live a healthy lifestyle. This isn’t an unusual resolution. In fact, I am sure many of you made the same commitment to yourself too. Raise your hand, if in the past some of you have kept this resolution for no longer than 2 months? Um yea, if you could see my hand, it would be raised. It’s not that I don’t enjoy working out, because I do. Once I get to the gym, I am all about it. But that is just it. Sometimes I need a little extra motivation to GET there.

With styling, I teach my clients about how to dress to impress. And most of the time I am speaking about dressing to impress yourself! I mean if you are really “feeling” your outfit on a particular day, it is going to show. Your confidence will be boosted and you will be motivated to take on whatever comes your way. If you look good on the outside, you are going to feel good on the inside too. You know those people that walk into a room and really own it? They probably LOVE what they are wearing!

So knowing this and knowing that my weakness with exercise is motivation, a light bulb went off. This kind of thinking is OF COURSE applicable to what I wear when I work out!

So just like any other time I am updating a closet, I did an audit of my workout wardrobe. I purged the bad, put some cute functional outfits together from my current workout gear and made a list of basics to add. At the top of my list was a new pair of leggings. Ever since my Nordstrom days I have worn Zella Live In Leggings. Just FYI, Zella is a Nordstrom proprietary brand. The designers that used to design Zella, now design Lululemon.

This is what I love about the Zella Live In Legging

  • Fabrication is thicker (no see through action)
  • They hold up wash after wash (make sure to use lingerie wash though)
  • Some are reversible. One side for cold weather and the other for hot. Genius.
  • The black live in legging is only $52.
  • If you like leggings with a higher waistband, these are for you.
  • They double as regular leggings because of their matte appearance.

My love for Zella will never go away. However, for Christmas I received a gift card to Lululemon. For the longest time I had been weary of shopping at Lulu for fear that I would fall in love with everything. And I was right. I tried on A TON of pants and got what seemed like a full education from the girls that worked there. In the end, I decided to try out the Wunder Under Pant III.

This is what I love about the Lululemon Wunder Under Pant III

  • The rise is a wee bit lower than my Zella pants which is nice because I have a short torso. (short girl problems.)
  • The fabrication is thicker and the weave is tighter giving these pants a tighter fit.
  • Fabric camouflages ANY imperfection
  • Wide waistband creates more of an hourglass shape and holds in the (eh hem) love handles.
  • Length was perfect and no alterations were needed (Yay!)
  • They hold their shape. They stay put when I run long distances. (Major plus.)

 

Style Tip on Pants:

When trying on workout pants, you want to make sure they are tight! If they are too loose, they will fall down during your downward facing dog and give everyone quite a show. This is one of the only times I will tell you to size down in pants. Because these pants have so much elasticity in the fabric, they will stretch out eventually after continuous washing. If they are too big to begin with, you can only imagine what they are going to look like in a couple of months. Also, when buying new workout clothes, find a common color theme so that everything goes together. My trick is black and white with pops of color in accessories like shoes or headbands.

My picks for awesome workout pieces

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The deets

(1) Lululemon Wunder Under Pant III

(2) Athleta Chatarunga Pant

(3) Zella Live In Legging

(4) Nike Foiled Muscle Tank

(5) Nike Polka Dot Tank

(6) Nike Camouflage Tank

(7) Nike Juvenate Sneakers

(8) Nike Air Max Thea

(9) Nike Blazer High Tops

So all in all my plan has worked…so far…I mean it has only been 6 days. But, I have been to the gym everyday this week and of course have worn a cute outfit that ultimately got me out the door. It seemed a little silly at first, but sometimes you just have to do what works for you…and this did the trick! Do you have a special trick for motivating yourself? Please share in the comments below!

Happy New Year and the romper that comes with it.

It’s amazing how much can change in a year. Sure, that sounds totally cliché and I am sure A LOT of people say that at the start of a new year. However, this is the truth for me. 2015 started out in a completely different way than the way it is ending and I am totally ok with it. Because, this was the year I finally found myself and my true career passion.

I started 2015 feeling a little bit lost, I was still grieving the loss of one of my closest friends that had passed away. I was also feeling lost about “what I wanted to be when I grew up”. I knew I had always wanted to start a blog but the thought of starting one was completely overwhelming. How to start it, what to write about, who would read it…the list goes on and on. But, if I learned anything from the loss of my friend Jamie, it was to enjoy life to its fullest and to seize the day as much as possible. So, with the support from my family and friends, that is what I decided to do. I seized and Abbywoodwear was born.

2015 also marked the start of my styling business. I am so excited that I finally found my calling and something that I love to do. I am grateful to you for following along with my baby blog and I can’t wait to see what 2016 brings…which is hopefully a few more friends (and maybe a few less lbs.:) If you aren’t following along with me on Instagram, come join the party where I post daily style advice, outfit looks and all around fun.

But now for the deets:

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As I have grown older, my New Year’s Eve plans have evolved from going to huge parties to spending a quiet evening at home with the two loves of my life. Something that has remained constant though? Making sure I have a rocking NYE outfit because well, why not? This year was no different. I found the perfect romper to wear with tights and booties. The frosting on the cake? The amazing faux fur jacket that I found for a steal of a deal. My motto is that you should always dress to impress. I find this to be true even if the only people you are going to see is your husband and your puppy…and even if all you are doing is staying home and snuggling up on the couch. I hope you all had a wonderful New Year’s Eve!

And now the deets:

Black dressy romper: Scoobie (sold out but here is another one)

Gold tassle necklace: Scoobie (here is a similar one)

Gold curved Bar Necklace: Nordstrom

Sunglasses: Rayban

Faux Fur Jacket: Target

Cheers to 2016. Carpe diem.

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Swackets for the win and a GIVEAWAY!

Swackets. Just saying the word is fun. What is a swacket? It’s basically a jacket made out of sweater knit material and some form of shearling. The first time I spotted one of these mixed media toppers, I was shopping for a client and it totally caught my eye. I am always on the hunt for special statement pieces that my clients wouldn’t normally buy…so of course, I pulled it. When we had our try-on party, she fell in love with the swacket (and so did I.) It was versatile, comfortable and SO unbelievably cozy.

We played with adding the swacket to different looks. After styling and creating MULTIPLE looks with items already in her closet, it was a no brainer. She needed to add this stylish piece to her winter wardrobe. Weeks after her appointment, I was still thinking about it (the swacket that is.) Since that doesn’t happen very often, I decided to listen to my gut and went out to find my very own sweater jacket. I was so excited when I found this one at SCOOBIE.

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It was just the thing to pep up a basic black and white striped dress for a workday. I paired it with black opaque tights, black booties and this fun ladylike hat. I love blazers and leather jackets for over my dresses, but I wanted another option. I am all about variety and this was just the ticket. The boho vibe of the jacket paired well with the flowy tunic style of my dress. Plus, since it is constructed of sweater knit and faux shearling, I now have style and comfort in one piece!

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For a more casual vibe, I paired my beloved swacket with a buffalo plaid flannel and washed skinnies for a day of shopping with the hubs. The stark winter white color of the swacket was a fabulous contrast to the vibrant red plaid. It was one of those random December days when the temperature was around 50 degrees, so a coat wasn’t needed. But, since I am ALWAYS cold, this functioned as a statement piece and an outerwear piece.

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Two very different looks, two very different functions and one VERY special Swacket.

Look One Outfit Deets

Winter White Swacket//Scoobie

Buffalo Plaid Shirt//Old Navy

Light wash Denim Skinny//Flying Monkey by way of AddieRose Boutique

Olive Suede Bootie//DSW

Look Two Outfit Deets

Winter white Swacket//Scoobie

Black and White Stripe Tunic Dress//Old Navy

Black Bootie//Jessica Simpson

Black Floppy Hat//Target


NOW FOR THE REALLY FUN PART.

Because it is the holiday season AND because I love giving the gift of style AND because I love making new friends…I am doing a GIVEAWAY for a $25 Gift Card to Scoobie’s Online Store. What what?? That’s right! If you are the winner, there are so many cute items to choose from! Like this, this and I am loving this too.

To enter, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Head over to Instagram and follow @abbywoodwear and @shopscoobie (if you aren’t already)
  2. Like this photo on instagram
  3. Tag 2 friends in the comment section of the giveaway post
  4. Make sure to complete steps 1-3. Winner will be chosen randomly.

 

That’s it! Winner will be announced on Sunday, December 20. Good luck!

 

How to look chic (On a”not so skinny day”)

It was just one of those mornings when I woke up not feeling my skinniest. It was going to be a fat day. I try not to call them that because it casts a negative vibe on my entire day. So instead, I call them my “black on black” day. This means, I am probably going to wear some type of look that incorporates the color black.
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No matter what, black is always going to be slimming on you. Pair a black top with a black bottom and your body will INSTANTLY be streamlined. Not a huge fan of this dark combo? Don’t worry…The final ingredient of mastering the “black on black” is throwing on a fun cardigan, duster, or jacket over your look. It’s a way of showcasing your awesome 3rd piece  (instead of emphasizing that pooch you might be sporting that day.) Personally, I tend to grab for neutrals over my black on black, but I have been known to throw on something colorful too. Try a buffalo plaid poncho, a brightly colored Aztec colored cardigan or a super chic camel duster. Styling is all about tricking the eye, and this is one of my favorite magic tricks!

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Going through my client’s closets, I have taken notice that many women have a pair of jeans that they call their “fat jeans”. If someone indicates that they have a pair of these so called “fat jeans”, I immediately put them in the give-away pile. Think about it. If you have a pair of jeans that you ONLY wear when you are having one of these days, the entire day you are going to associate yourself with feeling fat too. So instead, refocus your energy on trying to find a look that is going to make you look and feel as slim as possible. Also, water. Drink lots of water.

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So here’s your homework.

Step 1: Look in your closet for your so-called fat jeans.

Step 2: Try them on.

Step 3: Survey the fit, style and wear and tear and then ask yourself these questions.

  • Do they look frumpy on you?
  • Is the style outdated but you keep them around JUST because they are your notorious fat jeans?
  • Is the hem fraying or do you see holes in places there shouldn’t be?

If all of your answers are yes, then you know it is time to move on and give them up. Not quite ready to part with them, that’s ok. Keep them. But, next time you go to grab for them, remember this little bit of style advice from your friend Abby…and you may change your mind.

 

Until next Friday…

 

 

 

Small Biz Saturday picks and why I love them!

 

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One of the many things that I love about being a personal wardrobe stylist is the SHOPPING. I love the hunt of finding unique pieces that I know will enhance my clients’ wardrobes. And when I go hunting, I hunt at MULTIPLE places. I mean we are talking: department stores, online, big box stores and my new favorite, locally owned boutiques.

I am not going to lie. I will forever be a Nordy girl. I loved working for a company that that put an emphasis on getting to know your customers. I loved the spectacular merchandise. And, I loved the fact that excellent customer service was an expectation. ALWAYS. Now that my Nordstrom days are behind me, I am still looking for places to shop that will measure up to these high expectations. Luckily I have found a couple of places that fit the bill, and they are all small locally owned KC boutiques! So, with small business Saturday coming up tomorrow, I thought it would be fun to share with you my fave go-to local stores to shop in KC.

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From the first time I stopped in to visit this tiny boutique, I fell in love with not only the merchandise but the vibe as well. The owner Meagan is always cheerful and greets you by name. She always takes the time to chat with me and show me all of the new goodies (new stuff comes in every week!). She loves her store and it shows. If you are looking for fun, on trend pieces at a great price point, this place is for you! The top I am wearing above just so happens to be from there too!

Small Biz Saturday Special: Stop in to the store for 15% off your purchase all weekend long. Then, on Saturday every purchase will be entered to win a $100 gift card. What a great reason to go shopping!

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Scoobie, is a fashion forward, 70’s inspired brand owned by Sarah Jabbour. Besides being one of the sweetest girls ever, she is also really good at what she does. By hand selecting all of her merchandise throughout the year, she provides fun, unique boho pieces that will be sure to catch someone’s eye and not hurt your wallet. You can find the adorable and hip styling’s of this brand at Trendz, the KC Garment District or online!

Small Biz Saturday Special: Scoobie is offering BOGO 50% for all in store items all weekend long. If you would rather shop online go to shopscoobie to receive FREE SHIPPING + 25 % OFF all regular priced merchandise. AMAZING.

 

Tulip

Located on the KC’s coveted Country Club Plaza (right next to the Better Chedder…yum), Tulip offers a sophisticated more mature selection of clothing and accessories. If you are searching for one-of-a kind pieces with a casual sophisticated vibe, this gem is for you. Every time I stop in, I am greeted warmly and immediately feel welcome. The next time you are on the plaza, pop in and check it out and tell Robin I said hello!

Small Biz Saturday Special: Stop in for special discounts on select merchandise!

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Happy Hunting! Until next Friday…

 

Marsala and why you should wear it

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Wine, Marsala, Porto, Burgundy, Maroon…this color is so hot right now. No matter what you want to call it, this hue is perfect for fall. I prefer to call it Marsala, mostly because it sounds so fancy. I mean I love neutrals, but it is nice to pop a little color into the wardrobe now and then. If you don’t have this color in your wardrobe yet, you should. Pantone says so.

When I saw this Marsala jumpsuit at The Loft…it spoke to me. It said, “Abby. You need me. “ It also helped that is was on super sale for $20. I love when I find something and I can find not only one, but TWO great reasons to add it to my closet. Done and done.

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One of my favorite things about blogging has been coming up with unique ways to style pieces. My style isn’t “super out there”. However, every once in awhile I like to put together looks that are a little more edgy and ultimately unexpected. So, when Tulip (super cute local boutique on the Country Club Plaza) asked me to participate in their Tulip Twist for this month, I was of course super excited, completely flattered and totally up for the challenge. This month’s Tulip Twist was to style this fun mixed media vest from their store. I love a good vest, as you can see from last week’s Transition your Dress with a Vest. I got right to work. First, I paired with some cute sweaters…and it looked cute, but I wanted to do something more fun. Enter new Marsala jumpsuit paired with new mixed media vest to demonstrate: how dress up this vest and ultimately be “vest dressed”.

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Hope everyone has a great weekend ahead! If you have a minute to pop over to Tulip’s Facebook page to vote for me I would #loveyouforever.

 

Until next Friday…

Transition your Dress

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Fall is DEFINITELY upon us. If you live in the Midwest, that means unpredictable weather. It can be warm on Monday, rainy and cold on Tuesday, snow by Friday and then back up to 65 degrees by Saturday. Unpredictable weather calls for some critical thinking in the style department. This is when “transitional” pieces come into play. What are my favorite transitional pieces you ask? Boots and Vests! What is my favorite way to play with them? Over dresses!

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As a rule, I go ahead and switch my closet out (summer wardrobe to fall wardrobe) with the fall of the first autumn leaf. But…because I live in Kansas, I know that Fall weather can change on a dime. With that being said, I do keep a few lighter weight dresses in my closet for those unusual amazing autumn days. As a stylist I am constantly coaching my clients on how to stretch their wardrobe as far as it can go. Why wouldn’t you want to make the most of what you already have? Using transitional pieces is a SUPER easy way to get more value out of otherwise season specific pieces. Can you hear all that money I am saving you chichinging in your head? Hope so!

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In the Spring and Summer, I wore this cute frock with wedges and sandals. In order to “transition” my dress to be season appropriate, I added my favorite pair of taupe suede boots (sometimes I like to take a break from my booties) and my favorite fur vest. And all of the sudden, my Summer dress is Fall ready. You can totally do this too. I dare you. Just kidding. But seriously, don’t be afraid to dig in your closet and try this look too!

Outfit Deets:

Fur Vest: (old) Here are three similar options under $75!  look at this one, or this, or this one is a steal
(I know, I know…I wrote about this vest a couple of weeks ago. But, apparently I just can’t get enough of it!)

Dress: (Scoobie) Here is a similar one and it is pretty cute! Look at this one.

Boots (Aldo) Here are some other options similar. These, these and these.

Cross your fingers the weather stays nice for just a little bit longer!

Until next Friday…

 

 

 

How to dress WEEKEND CHIC


It’s Friday! What are you doing this weekend? But most importantly, what are you going to wear?

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Like most people in the world, I always look forward to the weekends. After working retail for years (which included lots of weekends and holidays), I have learned to treasure those extra special 48 hours that come between Friday and Monday. Weekends are my happy place. I look forward to weekends filled with shopping, hanging with the hubs and lots of brunching! Something else I look forward to? Putting together the perfect casual weekend look! Usually, my weekend style is something fairly casual. But, I make sure it isn’t SO casual that I am not projecting that “maybe I went to the gym this morning, maybe I didn’t” kinda look.

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One of my favorite looks for the weekend is jeans and a t-shirt. I know…it sounds pretty boring but let me explain. These aren’t just any pair of jeans; they are OLIVE denim legging jeans. And, the color olive just so happens to be my latest fall fashion obsession. And, this isn’t just some ordinary t-shirt; it is literally one of the most comfortable T-shirts that exists. It’s the perfect blend of linen and cotton that makes it hang just so. It’s pretty much like the sisterhood of the traveling pants in shirt form because it looks good on EVERYONE. Seriously.

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Want to jazz this look up a little bit? Add a third piece to the look like a leather jacket or a faux fur vest. Pop on your favorite necklace and a pair of booties and your casual and chic weekend look is complete!olive4

Style tips

  • Try accessorizing your t-shirt with a jeweled statement necklace. It will really pop against the simplicity of a T-shirt!
  • If your denim is a skinny style, try to pair them with more of an oversized t-shirt to balance your silhouette.
  • Keep it simple. Less is more.
  • Use accessories to enhance this simplified look to make it look super sassy.

Outfit Deets

Amazing Grey T-shirt: Old Navy (this is the 3/4 Sleeve version but just as great)

Favorite Olive Green Denim Legging Jean: H&M

Booties: Splendid

Faux Fur Vest: Old but here is a similar just as awesome one

Necklace: Old but I am swooning over this Kendra Scott one

What is your favorite weekend outfit?? I am always up for new ideas.

Until next Friday…

 

5 Reasons to try Coveralls instead of Overalls

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Have you noticed? Overalls are everywhere. More and more people are getting on board with this new/old trend and many are really pulling it off. Unfortunately, I am not going to be one of those people. Here is my thing with overalls. They are just NOT one of trends that would fit under the category of “one style fits all”. And just because a style is trendy, doesn’t mean you HAVE to wear it. Remember that. Those are words to live by…at least in the style world. Not every style is made for every body type and even if they were, what fun would that be?

Overalls (although super cute on some) tend to enhance your hips because of the way they are shaped. They are basically shaped like a triangle with the widest part right over your hip area. When your hips are a little bit wider (like mine), it just isn’t very slimming. I don’t know about you, but I would prefer to wear to wear something that is slimming to my body type.

So whenever there is a trend that just isn’t for me, I find an alternative. In this case, I decided to give this these Black Denim Coveralls a try. IT WAS A WIN. I love that it is black but wanted to spice it up a little bit. So, I added a coral statement necklace and my olive green booties. Outfit complete! Is there a small chance I feel like I am channeling a chic mechanic vibe? Yep. Does it bother me? Nope.

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5 Reasons to try Coveralls

  • You are basically wearing a jumpsuit and jumpsuits are awesome.
  • This look is what we call “one-piece” dressing, which is easy. All you have to do is accessorize and you are set to go!
  • This look is more conservative and cold weather “friendly” than a typical jumpsuit because it has full-length sleeves.
  • The built in waistband will actually give you a waist!
  • This piece will streamline your body making the eye go from top to bottom in one fluid motion. This tricks the eye into making your brain think this silhouette is even more slimming than you already know it is.

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Style Tips

  • ALWAYS TRY IT ON. Because this is a one-piece garment, fit is key. Pay close attention to the length in the torso area. It cannot be too short or bad things will happen.
  • Dress it up with a pair of fun heels and some bright jewels.
  • Make it more casual with booties and by layering it with a longer sweater.
  • Wear it with confidence!

Are you open to trying Coveralls this Fall season? You are? Well then here are a couple of other pairs I really like: this one, this one or even this one

Until next Friday…

 

BARE LEGS AND BOOTIES!

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Do you ever see a trend and think “that is super cute and I totally want to try it but…I’m not really sure if I can pull it off?” Well, sometimes even I get this feeling. But, one of the things I love about fashion is trying new styles and daring to be different. So instead of worrying about it, I JUST DO IT. And so should you.

My most recent adventure has been playing with bare legs and booties. And I love it! This new Fall trend is fresh, unique and now is becoming more and more mainstream. Not to mention the fact that I am able to extend the life of certain pieces in my summer wardrobe, which means I am saving $$$. Always a plus.

For this particular look, I found one of my summer rompers in olive (which also happens to be my go-to color right now.) Then, I pulled an oversized grey sweater to throw on…you know for some warmth. Last, I slipped on my new favorite booties to finish off my Bare Legs and Booties look. Inspired to try this look? Here’s what you should do:

•Peruse your closet for dresses, skirts, shorts and rompers that are in olives, maroons, camels, greys and blacks. These are perfect colors for fall. All of these hues will coordinate great with booties in shades of brown, black, taupe and even grey (which is totally having a moment right now.)

•Look for fun layering pieces like oversized sweaters, leather jackets or blazers to transition the above pieces into Fall.

•Grab your booties! Don’t have any? Shop some of my faves here, herehere and here.

•Have a try on party in front of a mirror. Sometimes trying new trends can take a little while to get used to. Play with what you have! Try different combinations. Send me a pic if you aren’t sure!

•Find a look you love.

•Rock this new look with confidence!

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The Deets:

Oversized Sweater: Forever 21

Romper: Abercrombie and Fitch (old) but here is a super cute similar one.

Booties: Splendid

Jewels: Anthropolgie (old) but here is a similar one that I love

Side note: If you are shopping for booties and planning on wearing them with bare legs, look for a bootie style that isn’t going to cut your leg off. I ALWAYS look for styles that have a slight dip in the front. Or, try to choose a style that hits below the ankle. We want to make sure this look is elongating to your leg so TRUST ME ON THIS ONE. Not all booties are created equal so when in doubt…try it on!

Have fun with this look while it is still warm enough. Then when it gets too cold,  just add some tights…but more about that later.

Until next Friday…

 

 

Be a Metallic Maven

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If you have only known me a short time, you might not know that I majored in Art History in college. Yep that’s right. I know what you are thinking, “Interesting choice Abby. What are you going to do with that?” It probably wasn’t the most conventional major but that never bothered me. I loved learning about artist’s from all different centuries. Each one was unique and crafted their pieces from inspiration and purpose.

 

After I graduated, I wondered if I would ever be able to use my major, but now I realize that I do…EVERYDAY…with my styling. To me, styling is an art. You can draw inspiration from anywhere and everywhere: from looking at magazines like Harpers Bazzar to watching reality TV and E!News to see what the “it girls” are wearing. One of my fave activities is people watching. My husband gets embarassed because he thinks I am starring, and I really try not to. But, if I AM starring at someone, it’s probably because I love what they are wearing and how they are wearing it. This will also usually spark an idea for a new outfit or look. So the next time you see somebody starring at you, its probably because you are rocking your look so you should feel flattered and totally good about yourself.

 

In the end, Art History made sense because even though I am not an artist in the “convential” sense, I still use the same process as any artist would. My style and vision are created from inspiration and purpose just like them.

 

This past weekend, to celebrate my past scholary achievements, I visited Kansas City’s famous Plaza Art Fair. Walking the streets from booth to booth, this painting caught my attention:

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The artist, Joseph Bradley is amazingly talented. I found out he sells some of his work at Anthropologie (which makes sense of why I liked it so much.) The luxe metallic leafing totally reminded me of my shoes I was wearing that day. I haven’t had them for a long time but they have been a great addition to my wardrobe for the end of summer. Metallics pretty much go with everything and these shoes are no exception. I love the fun details on the sides and that they tie up the ankle (but not too much that they chop my legs off). The tiny heel is perfect for comfortable summer festival walking but dressier than a flip flop. And metallics are great for fall so I can wear them as long as it is warm out:) You can still get them here. (bonus: they are on sale!)

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Art and fashion trends absolutely influence each other. Metallics hues in a painting are just as striking on in clothing or accessories. I mean…gold, silver, bronze or rose gold could all be used as a neutrals to enhance your style. A great transition pallette for fall could be a white/rose gold/olive combo look…which would be pretty amazing. Metallics don’t have to be flashy, styled in the correct way they can finish a look to be completely chic. New to Metallics? Try some subtle additions to update your look and have some fun with it. What metallics are you going to try?

Mettalic Maven

Taylor Swift and the Launch of my Blog!!!

So tonight was Taylor Swift. It was uhmazing. I am so lucky that I have an older sister and a best friend that love her or I probably wouldn’t have gone. I can’t even believe I didn’t realize how great it was going to be…but it totally was. I think Taylor might be my spirit animal. Kidding..but she was super inspirational. At one point during her concert she had on this gorgeous neutral beaded sequined ball gown with a giant blush colored tulle skirt. Then, she stood up….ripped off the yards of tulle only to reveal the fact that she was wearing a FULL LENGTH SEQUINED JUMPSUIT. I love jumpsuits and I love sequins. Taylor + Abby = BFF.

I had been holding back on launching my blog/website for awhile (which is why you will see some older posts that date back to April.) I am fully aware that I am pretty good at procrastinating but will forever believe that I work best under pressure. My moto was “I will just do it next week.” T. Swizzle changed that for good. She is all about girl bosses, women empowerment, self-confidence, being yourself and seizing the day…which is exactly what I want this blog to be. Before the concert I was in the stall mode of the”seizing” part with this blog. After, I felt a new sense of motivation and I made a decision. Friday would be launch day.

Sooooo welcome to Abby Wood Wear: an inspirational style blog where people can find what’s trending in fashion, my latest loves in the shopping world, style guidance, shopping tips and tricks and all around fun! Stay tuned for weekly FRIDAY posts about awesome things that you should probably know about. If you want fun stuff sent straight to your inbox sign up in the SUBSCRIBE box to the right or follow me on Bloglovin!  Also be sure to keep following me on Instagram for daily greatness in the world of style.

Here’s a snipit of the photo shoot I did for the website and a taste of whats to come!

If you are at work put in your headphones!
(insert Taylor Swift Song: Shake it off)

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I told you I loved jumpsuits and sequins.

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The Deets

Denim Jumpsuit: Splendid
Denim jumpsuits are making a comeback in a major way. Try a darker denim jumpsuit with sleeves for Fall:
Like this one! 
or this one!

Black and White Striped Sequin Jacket: Ann Taylor (Old)

Black and White Strip are a classic style and stays in season all year round.
Look at this one!
or this one!
or I am kinda loving this!

 

The Extras

Necklace and bracelet: Stella and Dot necklace and Stella and Dot bracelet
White Heels: Target (sold out) But if I would have seen these I would have gotten them!
Jewlery used throughout the site is Stella and Dot c/o Catherine Wombolt. Let me know if you see anything you love and I can connect you with her to order some jewels!

 

Very special thanks to my photographer Crystal Albo and my friend Hannah (the model).
♥These two made my vision come to life.♥

 

 

See you next Friday!

Spring shopping Tips

 

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When a field editor from ThisisKC.com approached me about doing a feature, I was like ummm YES! With the weather FINALLY warming up in lovely KC, people are itching to shop for fun, new, bright spring wardrobes. But…before you go shopping here some insider tips that I shared to help people know when to splurge, when to pass, and what to do even BEFORE you walk into a store. Head over to www.thisiskc.com to read the full article.

Do you have any spring shopping tips??

Swimsuits for every bodytype!

Its summertime! It’s finally time to soak up the sun (with sunscreen of course) and spend some time at the pool. For months, we have spent endless hours at the gym and eating a healthy diet in order to prepare for this season. You think, “the hard part is done!” But then you remember. You still need to go swimsuit shopping. A dark cloud circles above you because shopping for a swimsuit is just about the worst. But, it doesn’t have to be. Some of you may have seen my latest fashion blog in Herlife magazine about my fave swimsuits for the season. But, I am sure you are wondering but which one is for me?? Never fear, I am here! I have compiled a trusty swimsuit style guide to direct you to the perfect bathing suit that will make you want to strut your stuff.

Whenever I shop for my clients, I am shopping with a strategy. My goal is to find styles that will work best with their specific body type. This is a KEY when shopping for swimwear. Lighting is key too. Dressing room lighting can be your greatest enemy. So just remember, you are going to look about a thousand times better in natural light…at the pool.

So….if you are:

Petite busted: Pretty petite everywhere but especially up top. Bra size AA-B.

Did you know that there are specific styles that can help, well, enhance the top area? Look for sweetheart necklines or tops that look like a bra. Most are going to come with a little padding and the style is the perfect way to give that area a little umph. Also, scout out tops with extra details like ruffles, which enhances the area too!

 

Full busted: You wear a C or above in a Bra.

Did you know certain brands make swimwear in cup sizes? Hallelujah. And some even have underwire?? Gasp. Ask local boutiques and department stores if they carry them. If you are a busty girl, this could be life changing.

 

Straight up and down: Straight up and down in the torso and narrow through the hips.

It’s all about the cutouts! Look for styles that have that monokini look with cutouts on the sides to create the illusion of a waist. Also try two-piece suits with fun girly details. Tie side bottoms can be adjusted to enhance any curves you might have too!

Pear/apple shaped: smaller on top and bigger on the bottom.

You want to highlight your top half as much as possible. A gorgeous plunging neckline will draw the eye in a vertical motion creating length in your shape. Stay away from boy shorts if possible.

 

 

Hourglass: 36-24-36 These may not be your exact measurements but you are definitely more of that “little in the middle” type shape.

You want emphasize your curves with styles that will support the top half and slim the bottom. Tankinis or tops with a retro halter style top are perfect for you. Skirted bottoms will give that flirty feminine look that will also cover your bottom half. Super cute and very on trend.

Tummy Concealing: You look great but want to slim your middle out just a tad. Ruching detail is your best friend. This style element will hide any imperfections in that area and will still be flattering. Want something a little bit trendier? Look for suits with peek-a-boo mesh. This style gives the illusion of a two piece while camouflaging the mid section. Super slimming too!

 

What about the accessories? Your swimsuit isn’t the only thing you need to think about! Make sure to remember those hats, cover ups and pool bags! These 3rd piece items will for sure complete your pool look!