What’s In Your Bag?
The famous female crisis, having so much stuff to carry around and nowhere to put it all in an organized way. Handbags are a huge closet staple and while functionality is always important, style is too. It is always hard to find a bag that you know will work with a lot of outfits, and that you wont want to chuck across the room after holding it for hours, however the biggest issue is finding the right bag for the right occasion. Here’s my best way to break it down, a handbag guidebook of sorts. Get to know these styles and say goodbye to holding your wallet at a cocktail party.
1) Cross body bag
A classic style, originally made popular by the quilted Chanel chain-link bag, that has come back to popularity with stunning force. Crossbodys are an absolute go-to style for a night out or a day of travel. The appeal here is the hands-free factor. Wear it on one shoulder for a night out, or strap it across your body for the daytime. It keeps all of your necessary essentials right by your hip and keeps your hands a free as can be. Crossbodys come in so many different structures and styles so remember to keep it small for nighttime and larger for daytime. Don’t bring a large cross body messenger out to the bar with you, unless you want to rock the mailwoman look!
2) Shopper totes
The name says it all for this one. These bags could actually fit an entire weekend worth of clothes if you tried hard enough. Their long rectangular structure makes them perfect work or school bags, however they can double as everyday totes or weekenders. Because you will most likely be loading up a shopper tote, I suggest one with sturdy handles to support the weight within the bag. Also, neutral leather or patent leather is ideal so that they can withstand the wear and tear of travel or work.
Contrary to the movie “The Hangover” satchels in women’s handbags are not the Indiana Jones kind. Satchel bags are one of the most common styles in designer handbags and are most often structured to stand up on their own and keep shape. These bags are your typical everyday bag, and usually include a small top handle and long strap so you can wear it two ways. The top handle should be used for wearing on your forearm, and the strap for your shoulder. Unless the top handle is sufficiently long enough, don’t wear it on your shoulder, you will cut off your circulation and look very strange doing it.
4) Clutches, Wallets, Small Accessories
This section on online websites always perplexes me. Why, you ask are they all clumped together when they are each very different from one another? The world may never know, however what I do know is that main purpose of these is functionality. For clutches, keep them strictly for fancy events or nighttime outings. They can be worn underneath your arm or simply held by your hand. Wallets on the other hand should always be kept in a bag. The most common mistake is using a wallet as a clutch, this just doesn’t look right. If your hesitant on whether your purchase is a wallet or a clutch remember this…wallets have zippers that wrap around three sides, clutches almost always do not.
Holiday Outfits Decoded
Here they come, ready or not. Somehow the holidays are here, and as much as you want to wear sweatpants to every family party to accommodate for the amount of eating you’ll be doing, truth is, you cant. Sometimes it seems like the holiday parties are never ending, and how is one supposed to come up with so many outfits for them? Don’t worry, you wont need to go out and buy five new sequin dresses for new years eve, just be a little creative and mix things up that you already have. Here’s how I’m planning.
1) Skirt with tights and boots
Chances are you already have two out of the three of these things. Take your favorite skirt and simply add accessories. In this case add some cute boots and tights. No you will not look matronly in tights, try a plain black pair or even printed or lace ones underneath a solid color skirt. Add a nice top or sweater and you have yourself a perfect casual holiday party outfit.
2) A touch of sparkle
I have honestly never understood the reasoning behind wearing head to toe sequins on New Years Eve. While sequins are definitely on trend, you don’t HAVE to wear something so flashy to ring in the New Year. Anything classy and pulled together will look just as good. My way of being festive is to go with a little black dress and a flashy accessory. This can be anything from a statement necklace to sparkly shoes. A classic black dress provides a perfect backdrop to add personality with accessories. No need for sequin overload.
3) You can make jeans look fancy
Yes. I repeat, you can make jeans look fancy. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not talking about your light wash distressed pair that you’ve had since eighth grade and refuse to get rid of. I mean a nice DARK WASH or black pair that fits well. Jeans can be a great basic piece for a more casual holiday party. Try them with a tank and a blazer, or even a peplum top and a statement necklace. The trick here is to make everything else about your outfit a little more dressed up; if your top is fancy it will make your jeans look much more pulled together. Also….DARK WASH.
4) Know what shoes to wear when
If I could say one thing I hate, it would have to be running around the kitchen helping my mom cook on Christmas eve….in heels. Girls, be smart and realistic about this one. Save your heels for nice dinner parties and New Years Eve. Wear flats or boots for all family parties. Trust me on this one, you will probably end up sitting around in your pajamas by the end of the night anyway. Keep your gorgeous platforms for the really fancy parties
5) Last but not least, comfort
Remember that the holidays are about sharing time with ones you love. Which means these loved ones probably wont mind if you choose the comfy sweater over the tight body con dress that you have to pull down all night. Be comfortable, and keep in mind that you will be eating….tight dresses don’t feel so hot after a thanksgiving meal if you know what I mean.
What inspired me this week:
The Shoe Game
Here’s what I have learned this far about heels, they are beautiful masterpieces of accessories that not only have the ability to make you feel like you run the world, but also make you feel like your feet are standing on top of a bed of knives. Last week I came across a blog post that wrote about this concept of “2 hour heels”. You know, the heels that you spent a near fortune buying and a near eternity obsessing over, but cant seem to last in them for more than two hours let alone actually dance in them. As beautiful as they may seem, sometimes their realistic-ness is quite slim. This leaves us with the ever present challenge of finding comfortable yet chic shoes for a night out, or trying to make your heels work, something every girl will most likely face in their young adulthood. Here’s my way around it…
1) Heels are not the only shoes in existence.
Don’t get me wrong, I love nothing more than a killer pair of pumps to go out in, however there are so many similarly cute options. For the winter months try combat boots or riding boots. You may think they are too casual, but if you make the rest of the outfit coordinate with them, you can pull it off better than you may think. Flats and sandals are also just as perfect for a night out. Just because you’re not lifted three inches doesn’t mean you can’t still look great.
2) Wedges, wedges, wedges
They will change your life. Still the same effect of heels, but a much more solid ground to walk on. Bootie wedges are perfect for fall and winter and are very on trend! Give them a try; they wont take away from your cute outfit.
3) If you can’t walk up and down your hallway in your heels. Put them away
Here is an easy test to gauge whether your choice of shoes will work for your ENTIRE night. You don’t ever want to be the girl running around barefoot with her heels in hand. Not a good look. If you can’t make it down your hallway and back without struggling, keep those shoes for an event that you will be sitting down more.
4) Platforms are a girl’s best friend.
Heels with a higher platform under the toes make the heel height seem much lower when you actually walk in them. The troublesome heels are the ones with a huge difference between the platform and the back of the heel. They leave your feet more upright than closer to your natural foot form, resulting in the baby deer walking look. If you’re a sucker for the five inch styles, make sure they have a thick platform underneath the toes, and possibly a strap over the top of your foot to keep you from sliding.