Fall tentatively flutters it's way back into our lives for those of us in Arizona at the end of a long hot summer and the excitement of wearing a jacket looms ahead like a chocolate fudge sundae after a four month diet! It's not cold enough for a coat, but a jacket is the perfect transitional piece to take you from summer into fall and beyond.
Here is my pick of five jacket styles that are still carrying a major torch on the fashion scene of hot trends this season. I've linked several cute finds beneath each style that you can shop directly from the thumbnail.
The Denim Jacket
Easily the best laid-back champion of your closet. It can of course be worn all year round but after a long hot Arizona summer, it’s exciting to make my little blue friends acquaintance again!
It’s also a great layering jacket. It looks equally good layered under a winter coat as it does over a sport bra, a summer dress or the obvious tee.
The trouble with a denim jacket is it’s rather like a glass of wine, it’s hard to stick to just one! With so many shades, washes, and styles out there it takes will power. My suggestion (if one is your only option) is to go with a classic length and cut, medium wash, little to no distressing or rips and skip the embellishments. That part you can do yourself. With all these cute patches and brooches available you can add personality to your plain denim jacket and then remove them when it’s not appropriate or the style changes.
The Biker Moto Jacket
Seeped in style, the classic leather biker or Moto jacket adds a ton of attitude to even the most inconsequential outfit. Like the denim jacket, it looks good with almost any ensemble, from jeans and tee to a cocktail dress and heels. It elevates a look to a different playing field than the denim jacket. Its shiny sleekness offers a more polished finish and adds bold character.
As with anything, fit is very important for a leather jacket to look cool. When purchasing make sure it zips up easily without pulling across the chest and back. The light hitting the leather can make a bad fit look worse. Also, make sure you have some extra room if you want to wear a sweater underneath. Bear in mind that a good quality leather jacket needs to be taken care of. Apply a leather cream to treat the leather which also helps to further soften it over time and with age it will mold itself to your shape and become one with you! Your jacket will love and hug you for a lifetime.
If you don't want to splash out too much money, there are many faux leather jackets at a snip of the price that are so realistic it's hard to tell the difference. These days there is nothing to be ashamed of wearing a faux anything, and when it comes to fur and leather, everything to be proud of!
One of the hottest summer trends is carving a path well into fall. The kimono is taking on a whole new dimension, becoming more of a serious jacket or coat rather than the delicate cover up it portrayed through the summer. It encompasses many of the new season’s style accents showing up in rich florals, velvet, lux fabrics, often stressing its Asian origins adding a touch of opulent warmth.
This season’s offerings come in short jacket length as well as long duster length. Many have a lining to give them more substance and weight needed at this time of year. Wear them over slinky dresses or a pair of jeans and a tee.
The Bomber Jacket
This jacket is either too cool for school with any style of jeans (or shorts), and suitably retro when worn with mid length skirts, dresses or slacks. This is another jacket that totally fits in with the falls hottest trending fabrics and prints whether it be floral, graphic or plain and coming in a medley of lux fabrics from satin to velvet. It’s a fun and versatile jacket, comfortable, soft and lightweight.
The Aviator Jacket
Last but not least, the “piece de resistance” of jackets, the over sized aviator jacket. This jacket is going to take you through anything fall can throw at you (unless it’s high temperatures) and see you all the way through winter as well.
Traditionally a rugged leather on the outside and cozy shearling on the inside, they’re utilitarian hardiness is unequaled. Unlike the biker jacket, the recently adapted high fashion styles are longer in length providing more body coverage. Its profound fashion statement resembles roguish sophistication and the current adaptations make it available at every price point.
Take this one I'm wearing for example from Zara (link here), it has very realistic faux leather and faux fur lining instead of shearling. Coupled with some high fashion hardware and strap detail, it cuts a very cool price tag from several thousand dollars to $149. Thank you Zara! Here are a few other aviator jackets from different brands that cross the spectrum.
One final thing... don't leave it too late when purchasing important pieces for the next season. The chances are if you leave it until the temperature absolutely warrants a jacket or for that matter a coat, the best picks will be sold out.
Wishing you a wonderful weekend, and thank you for stopping by!
Palazzo pants, also known as wide leg pants, generally fit around the body, flaring into fullness as they gain distance from the hips such that when standing still, they take on the effect of wearing a mid length or long skirt.
The word palazzo originates from Italy and means large palatial building as in "palace", so it's little surprise that these splendid, showy (and large) pants would be named accordingly! They certainly have a large amount of pizzazz going on!
Cool and airy, palazzo pants provide great air circulation and fare well even in the Arizona soaring temperatures!
Crane birds seem to have become as popular as flamingos and pineapples in the fashion world recently, and with this bird design being in one of my favorite color schemes, what's not to love... give me all the blush tones!
I've had these palazzo pants since April and they sold out fast. However I just discovered that another supplier has them in stock in all sizes and the best part is that they're a third of the price I paid for them originally at only $23, so I just had to spill the beans!
Palazzo pants are a viable option for warm weather as well as transitioning into fall. For the cooler months, I plan on wearing a pair of sock booties with them (yet to be purchased!) plus they look good with a variety of jacket styles: denim; bomber; leather moto style and a fitted kimono jacket for a more slinky look.
For the balmier days, flat sandals, slides, or mules work well, as of course do a chic pair of pumps or high heeled sandals for a dressier occasion.
Since I was wearing this outfit for my birthday celebration dinner with the hubby I created a more romantic look with an off the shoulder top and elegant shoes. The shoes and top matched perfectly with the color tones of the birds so I stuck to a plain black clutch so as not to appear too matchy-matchy with the accessories. I was also wearing some long dangling statement earrings in blush hues - I know, I can't resist a blush tone!
That's just one outfit - a dressed up version! There are so many ways to wear these palazzo pants. Black top and black shoes for example will really create a show stopper look. Even a plain tee shirt is commonly worn with palazzo pants, totally making the pants the star of the outfit.
It was a tough decision on what color top to wear with these pants, but I'm pleased with how the green worked out. Olive green looks equally as good as well as a deep orangey red color, super on trend right now!
The side-tuck gives the top an asymmetrical hem line which breaks up the monotony of it's full coverage and adds a little flirty glimpse of the hip.
The fabric is slightly stretchy which makes them very comfortable. The colors are vibrant and range from deep red and amber tones to blush and pinks with a range of green hues in the foliage.
So here's the real show stopper, these floral palazzo pants are on sale and are only $18! I've linked both of the pants I'm wearing below in the thumbnails as well as some of the other pieces I'm wearing with them.
Have a wonderful weekend and thank you as always for stopping by!
Until now I've never had my "Lady in Red" moment! This is the first red dress I've owned since a red pinafore dress my grandmother made me when I was five years old. Why has it taken me fifty years to do this? I've had all out pink dresses, the brightest of floral dresses, all of which I could have been seen from outer space in, but why not red?
Historically, wearing red has been associated with promiscuity. It is said that women subconsciously find other women who wear red a threat, perhaps because a woman in red might run off with their man or at least seduce him. Studies have shown that men find women in red to be more attractive. If there is any significance to the promiscuity theory then we can assume a women in red is more likely to engage in a little sauciness, which undoubtedly would make her more appealing to men. In any event, I think we can safely blame men for the notoriety surrounding the LRD!
I'm not saying that any of these reasons are why I haven't worn a red dress until now, but there could be some underlying subconscious psyche that held me back from doing so! Since I'm now 56 years old, I doubt I'm seen as a threat to anyone whether I'm wearing a red dress or no dress at all!
The style of this dress is flattering for most body shapes due to the trumpet hem, sometimes known as a flutter hem. The volume created at the hem balances out the shoulders and the body skimming line throughout the waist and hips creates a feminine silhouette even for a no-waist boyish figure such as mine.
Nude shoes and accessories have played a major role in helping me overcome my apprehension to wear a red dress. I simply love the chic look that the neutral tones provide against the vibrant brights. Before nudes became a fashion stronghold in the accessories game, I could only imagine black shoes with a red dress and that has never appealed to me. If it's a really special occasion amp up the star quality with gold shoes for some old Hollywood glamour.
Since I wasn't strutting my stuff at a well heeled gala ball or tottering down a red carpet I toned down the bling with a long pearl necklace wrapped twice to sit just at the neckline. You can add more drama with a sparkly collar necklace.
Scarlet Fever - The New Epidemic
This is indeed the time to take advantage of a red dress, or red anything for that matter. It's hitting the fall and winter season with a vengeance. Pillar box red, orangey tones and jewel red hues are showing up in every type of garment and accessory. It's definitely not for the fashion faint of heart but these big reds are making a bold statement!
If you've ever felt the desire to dress up as a jolly red fire engine given it's ability to stop traffic and turn heads all at the same time, then now's your chance! It's okay to wear head to toe red even if the tones clash. If you're not one who seeks that much attention or wants to be noticed from another solar system, you can start of small with just one piece. A bold red handbag can change the whole dynamic of an outfit taking it from ordinary to extraordinary, and don't forget your bright red lipstick and of course nail color to add to the pizzazz!
Also consider the red dress is going to make a great holiday statement in the upcoming months. I've linked several of my red dress favorites below, some of which are on major sale. So if you're feeling inclined to have your "Lady in Red" moment, act now before the holiday onslaught begins!
As always, thank you for stopping by my friends!
With the beginning of September upon us, most people across the US are starting to think about fall, whether it be the upcoming holiday plans, when they will have their first taste of pumpkin anything, or what they will need for their fall wardrobe. Even here in Arizona, we're thinking about fall in a drooling sort of way - for us it means only four more weeks at the mercy of the desert's relentless heat, hooray!
A number of styles are playing a huge role this coming fall / winter season and plaid is one of them. Plaid prints and bold checks from seasons past are not going anywhere. It is my theory that the buffalo check is the continuation and grown up version if you will, of gingham!
Haven't been able to steal the time away for a proper holiday of late, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't enjoy a little time away from home. A change of scenery with the ones you love, namely hubby (aka Brian) and the dog (aka Rigsby), is all you need to recharge the batteries for a while! A staycation in Arizona is never a disappointment when there is so much to do, see and enjoy here. So we drove all the way down the road to the new Mountain Shadows resort to see what all the hype was about!
The minute I saw this sleeveless top with the roll neck it reminded me of something Jackie Kennedy Onassis would have worn. As one of the most undeniably great style icons in history, I had a picture of her in my minds eye wearing this top with big over-sized sunglasses. This vision firmly transferred itself in my head as me, minus the Manhatten penthouse and the 325 ft yacht!
The fabric is a woven polyester/spandex mix providing a crepe texture and a super comfortable fit with just enough stretch. The fabric weight is such that the wide neckline with fold over collar sits perfectly without collapsing and the straight cut of the body hangs flawlessly covering a multitude of dinner and cocktail sins!
Tried and tested, I washed this top on a cold gentle cycle with like colors, dried it on a very low heat for a short time and it came out like new. It may require a light press, which I did on the reverse, a habit I have so as not to create shine on the garment face.
This is a top that will ease it's way into fall simply by pairing it with a blazer or a long cardigan. I love not having the bulk that sleeves add when wearing cardigans or slim fitting jackets over a top. It also comes in black and it's inexpensive enough to buy both color ways at only $24.99 each!
Paired with ankle length skinny jeans the overall look is balanced. The extra leg length, rather than a capri or cropped style creates the illusion of being taller especially when the top is longer as in this case. Sky high stilettos help with the altitude too! These AG jeans are my absolute favorite brand by far for skinny jeans. They are still selling like hot cakes and they're definitely worth the investment from both a comfort and style perspective. Consider also wearing this top with long flared pants or a mid length pencil skirt for a smarter formal look.
Pearl earrings and bracelet are my preferred choice of accessories to heighten the sophisticated feel and to temper the distressed jeans. Plus the silk scarf tied around the handbag throwing a little pattern and French chic in honor of Jackie's descent on the side of her father!
Jackie proves that classic never goes out of style!
Thank you for stopping by lovelies!
Who doesn't love getting a manicure and pedicure? Hands and toes primped, pruned and nails painted to perfection leaving little jewels atop each digit like shiny bling! And if that weren't enough, the benefit of sitting back, being pampered, reading a trashy magazine or just people watching lost in your own thoughts, ah... bliss!
My husband suggested I do a movie review for the blog. He recommended Atomic Blonde for a number of reasons: 1 - the strong woman portrayed in the main character, 2 - the fashion and style, and 3 - the music from the eighties! He failed to mention the main reason, 4 - he really wanted to see it!
He had me already with the title! Reasons 1 through 3 were right up my alley. I was excited to do this, couldn't wait. If I'd have known about reason 4, I would have re-considered this whole idea. I was double crossed, but now I've seen it, so here it is!
Keeping up with the fast pace of fashion on a modest budget is a challenge to say the least. Just when you think you're covered with an outfit for every occasion, at the sight of an invitation to something you suddenly find yourself with nothing to wear! Have you ever pondered your closet and wondered if you hadn't bought so many clothes you could have purchased the Louis Vuitton purse or the Gucci shoes, probably yes! Well you still can, at a fraction of the cost. With a few extra pennies from heaven to help keep your closet current, consignment may keep the fashionista in you afloat!
A floral wrap dress is the ultimate favorite for comfort, effortless style and summer chic. The simplicity of a one piece garment begs only the question of what accessories to add. Easy to pack and lightweight, so no worries on exceeding the weight limit for checked baggage if you're travelling, plus they need little or no ironing when you get to your destination. Cosy it up with a scarf in the evening, a denim jacket or even a leather jacket during the cooler seasons. Plus, a wrap dress accommodates both our fat and thin days with ease, and who doesn't need clothes that do that?
There are some things in fashion that I've loved since I can remember despite the coming and going of current trends. Whether considered by those in the know as "in" or "out" I couldn't have cared less, I've been wearing pink since I was able to buy my own clothes, and animal prints have never really been out of fashion. I've undoubtedly made adjustments over the course of time yielding to a particular hue of pink or a varying print of leopard in order to stay on top of my game, but never have the two favorites waned.
There are very few clothes that are comfortable to wear during the middle of the summer in Arizona, and very few clothes is about all that is humanly possible to handle when the temperature soars from anywhere between 105 to 120 degrees with the addition of humidity which increases during the monsoon months of August and September.
Pants are the last thing we normally contemplate during this season, but here's a pair that can happily take you from day to night without feeling that you're wearing pants or anything at all for that matter. They're light and airy, loose fitting, comfortable, don't crease, don't stick or show perspiration. Another great find from H&M at only $19.99 and they're bound to hold their own through a couple of seasons if not a couple of years.
If you've been toying with the idea of investing in some gingham to actually wear instead of lining your picnic basket with or laying it over your kitchen table, then consider a cute off-the-shoulder top such as this. Black and white seersucker gingham, light weight, hangs perfectly and has all the bells and whistles... literally! Bell sleeves, bow ties and whistle worthy off-the-shoulder. Whoot whoo! This top is from H&M and available in some stores but is sold out on-line. If you're signed up to receive the Above and Beblonde Newsletter, just enter your e.mail in the side bar and I'll let you know as soon as it's restocked.
Wow, who'd have thought eyelashes could be life changing! If you've ever wondered what's involved in having eyelash extensions, what's required on an on-going basis and whether you should take the plunge or not, then you need to read this. If you want a real reason to justify saying "I woke up like this", and you're looking to amp up your "hello gorgeous" factor all whilst wearing no makeup, then this is the beauty regimen for you.
Here's a romper that transcends age. I officially name it the "wide leg romper". The style is misleading, looking more like a dress, the perfect sundress that's mini but not minuscule. This little cutie, the Palma Romper from Anthropologie allows you to go romper all you like without the fear of losing your dignity and it has more than it's fair share of stylish details. But best of all it's currently on sale at 50% off and is still available on-line as well as in some stores.
Karen Serino is a life and style blogger, sharing fashion, fitness and fun for youthful women in their forties, fifties and beyond.
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Click the picture below to see my interview with the lovely Jonet Wooten from Fabulously Chic Over 50