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3 Secrets To Figure Flattery

Smart Shopping for Figure Flattery

We all know the feeling: our hearts race as our eyes latch onto an item in an online catalogue; we race to check it out, fastest fingers first; we wait impatiently as we imagine how our wardrobes will be complete once that item wings its way over to us; the blessed package arrives; we open it up and try it on… we find the item doesn’t make us look the same way the model does in the catalogue.

Online shopping is a quick way of finding out that not everything which fits will flatter. Figure flattery is so much more than measurements on paper; it’s also about knowing yourself, loving yourself, and shopping intelligently to make the most of what you have. Here, we present 3 tips to shop your way to figure flattery:

-          Know your compliments and classics

Sometimes, others see more than we give them credit for. You may focus on the way that dress draws attention to your arms, but others will see how that shade of blue makes you glow. Pay attention to which articles of your wardrobe (including accessories) draw compliments from those around you, and keep these compliments in mind when you shop for new additions.

Also note which items make you happiest, and which you reach for on days when you want to look particularly good, or when you don’t know what to wear. The truth is, everyone has their own wardrobe classics. Not everyone’s idea of a classic is a striped Breton top, khaki capris, and ballet flats; sometimes, your classic could be a loose lace dress and flip-flops.

Over time, classics and compliments can give you a good, cohesive idea of what brings out the best in you. What’s more, figure flattery shouldn’t expire as the fashion seasons pass by. A deep Marsala red which brings out the brown in your eyes won’t get any less flattering when the colour of the year changes!

-          Happy girls are the prettiest girls

Knowing what looks best on you will not help if you do not translate that into your own wardrobe. Self-confidence and happiness often make the prettiest girls, to paraphrase a quotation from Audrey Hepburn.

Once you know what looks good on you, use it as your strongest weapon; if you’ve got it, flaunt it! Wearing a trumpet hem dress when everyone else is in a baby doll or high-waist cut can make you feel like the odd one out, but if you feel and look good in it, you’ll be able to pull it off better than anyone else can.

Pixie Whimsy Dress

On that note, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. One temptation of online shopping is getting carried away with what looks good on everyone else, but not you. Stick to what you know, and work it until you’ve perfected it. Figure flattery is like any sport or art: you’ve got to hone your practice till you master the skill!

-          Understand that every trend has its own iterations

That said, don’t disregard a trend simply because it doesn’t look like you. For every trend that hits the runways, several iterations will trickle down to the stores, and you’ll be in a good position to pick one that best suits your figure.

For example, if you like the look of strict accordion pleats but aren’t sure how it’ll look on your wider hips, pick a skirt with a softer flow and distracting print. Our Block Party Pleated Midi Skirt combines soft pastels with a downward chevron pattern, which points the eyes down and away from the hips. The end result incorporates a trend in the most flattering way!

Alternatively, if you like the cut-out trend, but tend towards more conservative, feminine styles, try using lace as cut-outs! Our La Bamba Palm Dress uses strategic lace paneling to create an alluring cut-out effect that’s super flattering without flashing too much skin.

La Bamba Palm Dress

At the end of the day, make online shopping work for you, not the other way around. Use online shopping as a tool to curate a wardrobe that –more than flattering your figure– makes you happy. That’s what matters most!

Photo credits: Thread Theory; Pinterest

3 New Ways to Pair Pastels

Spring time is blossoming. The colours stocked up in stores and at the forefront of our minds turn as light as the new spring in our step. But lest the mention of ‘pastels’ make you turn away with thoughts of childhood and ‘cutesy’, wait – there’re new ways to pair pastels yet!

Call it the new spring awakening. Pastels this spring are as light as they come, but no less light-handed than the heavyweights already in your closet. Here, we show you three new ways to pair pastels that will invigorate you and bring spring time to your closet.

1.      Pastels as an alternative to neutrals

If you’re reaching for the blacks, navys, whites, and greys in your closet, stop – pepper them with pastels first. Look to these street style stars, who used pastel as a pop of colour to refresh the basics. Pastels are also a great way to accompany this season’s surprise hit, olive green. Pastels feminize the tone’s military overtones and lend a softness to structured silhouettes.

 

For a one-stop take on this tip, try our Shoreline Sublimity Dress. The print combines pastel pink with muted grey in masterly strokes. Grey is an often overlooked neutral, frequently passed over for its staid reputation, but grey can also become the perfect neutral to pair with girly pastels. It’s not as harsh as black, and not as obvious as white; the end result is neutral colour-blocking at its finest.

2.      Pastels mixed with bright colours

Another way to enliven pastels and prevent them from looking too childlike is to give it a shot of the bright treatment. Think of pastels as the softest tones on your artist’s palette and give colour-blocking a go. You can pair pastels with shades of the same colour, saturation turned up – light sorbet cream with bright tangerine, for example. Or you can pair pastels with contrasting brights – see style stars Nicole Warne, or Gary Pepper Girl, and Amber Atherton pair their pastel blues with bright pink above. The result is just a little less Barbie, and a lot more cool.

To try the look, play with separates. Our Dazzled By Constellations Dress in mauve could be the perfect complement to slide under a rich indigo cardigan. The finely etched laser-cut details help to spice up the soft tone, too, so it doesn’t end up looking too one-note.

Pastels done in new textures

Lastly, try pastels in new textures. Loewe ran the look in suede and metallic for their Spring 2011 runway show, and it’s just as relevant today. While copping the model’s look might be a bit too OTT for the office, you can still take a line from that book in our pastel metallic Every Skirt Has A Silver Lining (available in pink and mint). The subtle shimmer of the skirt brings to mind the sashay of cherry blossoms in the wind, and you can pair it with a sleek black turtleneck for a mod look.

If you’re daring, try more than one tip at a go! Socialite and model Poppy Delevingne (yes, Cara Delevingne’s sister) stepped out at a party in a fantastic grey feathered coat atop her embellished pink blouse. The mix of textures and tones make for one eye-catching ensemble. You can try the same in our suede Morning Dew On Windmills Dress . The texture will surely demand second glances as you walk on by!

Bring that ‘new year, new you’ spirit into the rest of 2016. Just because pastels are synonymous with spring doesn’t mean the ways you pair pastels need to be clichéd. With these three tips on new ways to pair pastels, we’re confident your spring time will be a very stylish one indeed.

Sources: Imaxtree; Glamour; Refinery29; Elle; Thread Theory

Of Theories, Pineapple Tarts, and Tradition

Of Theories, Pineapple Tarts, and Traditionimage

An ancient Chinese tradition holds that purchasing new clothes prior to the Chinese New Year symbolizes the welcoming of a new beginning. We can see how this may hold true—clothes certainly have a restorative and reformative power. There’s nothing like a new dress that fits you perfectly to make you feel ready to take on anything the day (or year) has to offer. Whether your challenge is to impress relatives or simply to hide the signs of one too many pineapple tarts (we’ve been there before), we are here to empower you!

First of all, there’s no reason why following an ancient Chinese tradition should mean that you actually dress like one (i.e. a lady from an ancient Chinese era—good for television, but not so much for modern visiting). The myriad of style options available today means that you can pay homage to your roots and the hallmarks of the season without looking dated, or even straying too far from your daily style.

One simple way to do so is to wear red intelligently. Red is a traditionally auspicious colour in Chinese culture, and as designer Bill Blass once said, “When in doubt, wear red.” However, it’s important to note that not every shade of red will suit your skin tone. Not everyone can pull off shocking Chinatown scarlet. Generally speaking, if you’re fair or have cool undertones, go for rich, blue-based shades like wine red; if you’re darker-skinned or have warm undertones, try brighter, yellow-based shades like vermillion. If in doubt, choose clothes with red accents, like our Lily Belle Dress (White) or our Snow Flower and the Secret Dress. The splashes of colour will be enough to brighten up your complexion!

Have red hair? Not to worry. The old saying that those with red hair shouldn’t wear red has been completely tossed out of the window, following fabulous showings by red-haired celebrities like Amy Adams, who showed up at the recent Golden Globes 2016 in a stunning vermillion number (below).

If red isn’t quite your thing, sieve through silhouettes. If you like the figure-skimming cut of a qipao but don’t want something so immediately identifiable with this period, try our Rose of Sharon Dress, available in four colours and four sizes. The nude-tone underlay and crochet cut-outs add intrigue to a classically feminine piece. Looking for something a little more conservative? Try our My Fleur Lady Peplum Dress, which updates the peplum cut with a delicate shower of blossoms.

As a famous (fictional) fashion editor once said, “Florals for spring? Groundbreaking.” But we’d like to believe it is—that is, when done directionally, with laser-cut petals (see our Poets of Petal Laser Cut Dress), or when delicately spliced across shoulder-tops on a dip-hem dress (see our Almost a Love Story Dip-hem Dress). Take your cue from actress Holland Roden (another red-head in red—we love!), who let her dress do the talking with simple accessories.

Lace can be accentuated when placed atop a nude-tone underlay (pretty hot this season!), as in our Home Has A Heartbeat Dress. These would look great paired with either heels or flats (we’re envisaging the lace-up pointy-toed ballet flats that are all the rage these days) given their swingy silhouette and breezy length—perfect for switching up between house visits.

So there it is—no need to be uncomfortable or unfashionable when visiting cousins and colleagues alike! Simply weave your way through our collection, blessed in the knowledge that new hope and new confidence invite new beginnings indeed.

Photo Credits: Thread Theory, International Business Times, W Magazine 

Colour Crash Course #1: Tone on Tone

Colour Crash Course #1: Tone on Tone

Reinventing is hard, we know. If you’re like us, you’ve figured out roughly what colour looks good on you, and have amassed a wardrobe in variations of that same colour. After all, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right?

Right. However, making full use of the colours already in your wardrobe is one of the most commonly overlooked, yet effective, ways of reinventing your look. It’s faster (and, dare we say, cheaper) than running out to get a new outfit; and, if you already know the colour looks fantastic on you, chances are remixing outfits in variations of the same colour will only further liven things up.

Enter tonal colour-blocking: using colours in the same colour family together to create a look that’s richer in depth. For example, in the colour wheel shown below, you’d pick two or three colours from the same wedge and use them in the same outfit. Easy as that!

 

Baby steps:

Take your inspiration from nature!

Working your tones in ombré, or gradient, colour-blocking can be the first step for beginners who want to look effortlessly put together without having to think too much. The visual effect is softer, yet still sophisticated, and the overall look has a much less deliberate effect. Plus, it’s literally super easy: just pick a dress or one-piece wonder that will do the work for you. Check out our ombré dip-hem dress (below). Its waterfall layers add to the watercolour effect, and creates the perfect palette for you to dip your toes into tonal colour-blocking!

Alternatively, switch up your accessories! Accessories are a great way to determine the direction of your look and can be your sartorial equivalent of shading in a painting. Take, for example, our Architecture 101 Crochet Shift Dress (Powder Blue)(below). Its solid swathe of colour calls attention to the almost architectural detail, but you can harness and heighten that energy by adding a belt and statement necklace in royal blue, or a simple cornflower blue cardigan.

An added challenge for the risk-takers:
It’s time to shine—bright. Take your cue from actress Emma Stone, who absolutely stunned in a custom colour-blocked Thakoon creation at the Met Gala last year (below). She may have been at one of the most well-dressed bonanzas on the fashion world’s calendar, but her look is utterly translatable to the sidewalks, too: simply pick a crop top and slim skirt in similar, punchy hues, and you’re done. As designer Lilly Pulitzer once said, “Anything is possible with sunshine and a little pink.”

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the brights, keep your colours to a maximum of two and pack your jewellery away for now. Your colours make enough of a statement.

Good luck remixing your wardrobe! We guarantee you, ‘tis a tune you’ll be singing here on out.

Photo Credits: InStyle; Pinterest; Thread Theory; Wet Canvas

 

Colour Crash Course #2: Confident in Contrast

Tired of tonal? Is Christmas making your eyes go red and green? Wait—do those two colours even work together?

While we’re not advocating that you step out dressed like a Christmas tree, the simple answer is: yes! Contrasting colour-blocking is possibly the greatest weapon in your colour arsenal: it’s one of the most powerful ways to make you stand out. When utilized well, it projects confidence, happiness, and, strangely enough, effortlessness.

Why contrasting colours still look easy on the eye comes down, once again, to the colour wheel (see below). Contrasting colour-blocking could go two ways: analogous, or complementary.

Analogous colour-blocking refers to picking two (or three) colours that are next to each other on the colour wheel. For example, a light-green dress, with a yellow belt.

Complementary colour-blocking refers to picking two (or three) colours that are opposite each other on the colour wheel. For example, an orange dress, with a violet cardigan.

This may sound daunting and like a painter’s fantasy gone terribly wrong. It may also still sound like we’re advocating that you go out dressed like a Christmas tree. Rest assured—there are simple enough ways you can work this tool into your day-to-day outfits without looking like you got dressed in the dark, none of which involve you taking your inspiration from Yuletide gift wrappers.

Baby steps:

Start from familiar surroundings. Paddle-pop ice-cream; old HDB flats; perhaps even the spines of your favourite books pressed together on your bedside table… Our Block Me Pretty Dip Hem Dress in Mint/ Salmon (below) is a nostalgia-tinted colour-way that reminds us of cool ice-cream and playground slides on hot summer days. Alternatively, try its sister in Navy/ Kelly Green for a more neutral sideways step into contrasting colour-blocking. Pairing dark hues together is often an easy way to try contrasting colour-blocking without immediately seeking attention.

In the same vein, check out our Two is Better Than One Reversible Dress (Indigo/ Fuchsia). Its reversible nature allows you to decide just how bold you want to be today, and the peekaboo flash of colour is a flirtatious little sashay into colour-blocking territory.

Added challenges for risk-takers:

Add classic prints to break up your blocks: try polka-dots in neutral hues, or, if you’re daring, leopard print! These prints can go on your accessories, or as the base for a colour-blocked one-piece (like a coat—see our Blair Got It Wool Coat, below). As designer Jenna Lyons puts it, “As far as I'm concerned, leopard is a neutral.”

Alternatively, if you’re ready to up your game, try tonal colour-blocking and then add contrasting accessories. The look can serve as your sartorial equivalent of an exclamation mark at the end of the sentence. 

Don’t be afraid to bring the festivity to your wardrobe. It might just bring a smile to your face, too!

Photo Credits: Aphroditesheaven; Pinterest; Thread Theory