Thursday, June 16, 2011

Summer Layering : 6 ways to transform your outfits

This post marks the  TSB's 2-month birthday, so I wanted to make it different.  This one is more special because
it shows that ever since I started this blog [mid April] my fashion sense has evolved into an ability to solve real life styling problems that are not my own, but my roommate's. [She has a very interesting wardrobe to work with!]  Shall i add self-proclaimed stylist to my resume, now?  This is my first attempt at styling for someone other than myself, and it's exciting to see the difference before and after.

I always think that through layering, mix-matching, and creativity  I learn to recycle my clothes all year round without spending money on new stuff every season.  It's something I enjoy doing because I don't have a lot of clothes but I want to have many different interesting looks.  Today I'm going to focus on the "layering" concept for summer, which is a little trickier than layering for cold weather.  Since you can't pack on a lot, you need to be cautious about the thickness of the extra layer.

Key pieces:
1. shear, chiffon tops
2. vest
3. belts
4. very thin cotton shirts
[Items found in Summer's Closet]

So, my roommate showed me 6 items that she needed help with for various reasons, and I took on the challenge.  Sorry for bad photography.  I blame it on my cheap camera and lack of photo-shop skills.  By the way, she has not seen any of the pictures  because I wanted her to see the final product, which is this post. She's been wanting to see it so badly :P [Let's hope she won't kill me afterwards]

1. Daytime to Nighttime
Problem: How to wear this dress again at night for an event?
Solution: wear a shear polka dot turquoise wide-sleeved shirt, add shape with a 1 inch-wide shinny black synthetic leather belt to match the black stripe on the dress. The mixing of 2 patterns is fun but still sophisticated enough for a night event.

2.  Ill-fitting to Fab
Problem: The problem she has is with the white chiffon see-thru ruffled collar- tank.   She absolutely loves the shirt but feels like it's a bit too much in terms of shearness and the extra volume around the waistline makes her look "fat".
Solution:  wear a black vest that hides enough the extra volume but still shows the pretty ruffles and hugs the waist to accentuate her curves.  Now I've eliminated the see-thru problem but still preserved the details of the chiffon white top.

3. Outdated to Instyle
Problem: She doesn't wear this brown floral satin dress anymore because it adds age and has no idea what to do with it.
Solution: She's pretty excited because floral is in now.  I wanted to give her the floral-on-floral look [ that I've been admiring].  Wear two different floral pattern sizes so it doesn't seem too over-the-top.  The size of the floral pattern should match your height.   Big floral patterns look better on someone tall.  Medium and small patterns are better suited for average and shorter gals.   If you're 5' you will be drowned in giant floral patterns. It's important to coordinate the colors of the two pieces so it doesn't look like a floral mess.   The cotton tank is so thin that you can't  feel like you have on extra weight at all.  The skinny brown leather belt adds shape and detail.  V-neck on V-neck is key for a flattering neckline.  The white handbag is a hot item this summer, and it goes well with this outfit because solid-color accessories go well with a floral and vis-versa.

4.  Ordinary to Extra-ordinary
Problem: The shirt doesn't enhance her shape and doesn't do anything for the pretty skirt
Solution:  The pinstripe thin cotton gray shirt adds shape and flare.  Pattern on pattern brings out the plaid shirt even more, almost like a synergistic effect. Important thing to note is the colors of the two patterns have to be in the same color spectrum [different shades of gray].

5. Muted to Vibrant
Problem: Polka dots can be fun to wear, but she thinks the color of the dress is not vibrant enough.
Solution: Wear a thin peachy hugging t-shirt underneath to add color that doesn't totally contrast those of the dress.  Purple and and peach on vanilla is a great combo.  Also, the added matching peachy ribbon around the waist gives the illusion that it was originally there.  A pink purse goes really well with this color palate.

6. Sexy to Sexier
Problem: She doesn't feel comfortable with the dress's cleavage. 
Solution:  wear a laced-detailed hot pink tank to cover some cleavage but with an unexpected sexier twist. Hot pink lace is preferred because it matches one of the colors on her dress, her pink low-heel peep-toes, and  pink shoulder bag.

  [ Model: Summer  Photographer & Stylist: Shannon :]

Did I do ok?

Next time, when you clean out your closet or think about donating clothes, ask yourself, "how can I layer this?"  If something sparks, then it's still a keeper !

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