Mad About Fad

A passion for fashion

My Best Deal Splurge November 27, 2009

Filed under: My Shopping Cart — Mandy Childers @ 10:19 PM
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I did not buy many items today. I guess I was overwhelmed by the crowd that I was happy to just walk around the mall watching people with their shopping bags.  Still, I could not help splurging a little on colors and scents. I found a great deal from Estée Lauder (Macy’s)- with any purchase of Estée Lauder fragrance, I could get this fabulous color collection for only $55 which is said to be a $340 value.  What I liked about the set is that it had everything I wanted and a little more!

  • Deluxe Face Compact (Estée Lauder Signature Silky Powder Blush in Rosewood and Nude Rose, and Bronze Goddess Soft Matte Bronzer)
  • 4 Pure Color Long Lasting Lipsticks (full-size, in Candy, Rose Tea, Fig and Tiger Eye)
  • 3 Artist’s Eye Pencils (great for smoky eyes, in SoftSmudge Black, SoftSmudge Brown and Slate Writer)
  • Projectionist High Definition Volume Mascara (10-day supply, in Black)
  • Lash Primer Plus (10-day supply)
  • Gentle Eye Makeup Remover (full-size 3.4 oz.)
  • 4 Deluxe Makeup Brushes (Powder, Blush, Lip and Eye)
  • Look Book with tips on creating 4 fabulous looks
  • Golden Stand-Up Mirror
  • Cosmetic Traveler Case
  • Companion Makeup Case

As for the fragrance, I could not just settle for one. I chose the Estée Lauder Pen Pals Gift Set – portable 0.2 oz Eau de Parfum Rollerball Pens in three lush fragrances – Beautiful, Sensuous, and Pleasures. It is’s a great way to enjoy different Estée Lauder scents without spending too much.

Three luxurious scents and a fabulous color collection to indulge. I couldn’t ask for more. (Well, figuratively speaking.)

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Judith Leiber: Luxurious Minaudières and Red Carpet Purses November 25, 2009

Filed under: Bag 'Em Up! — Mandy Childers @ 4:24 PM
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Anyone who watched “Sex and the City: The Movie” would remember that adorable pink cupcake bag that Lily -Charlotte’s daughter- was carrying. It created so much buzz in Hollywood that even big girls like Katy Perry wore it. That bag is available at Neiman Marcus ( I saw one in Dallas) $4,295. Yes, quite pricey and not every woman will look good carrying it. Still, any Judith Leiber fan would love to own one of her creations. (Why, if I had the money to spend, I would buy one myself.)

Judith Leiber’s  cutting edge designs- from simple, elegant evening clutches to fancy pillboxes have earned her fame around the globe. In fact, some of her classic works can be found in museums like the Smithsonian. Her creations have become a status and fashion symbol among many women . Several Hollywood stars have carried her bag on and off the red carpet.

Although I find each of her handbag exquisite and unique in itself,  I can’t help picking out my favorites. I found three bags I like the most.

Viola

This rich satin envelope clutch is from the Holiday 2009 Collection. It is accentuated with a silver plated flower ornament that is bejeweled with pavé set crystal. It is very simple yet sophisticated- a perfect accessory for soirees or fancy occasions.

Style H11891
COLOR: Black
Price: $1,495

Wrap Clutch

This impressive clutch is not only dazzling but promises to be soft. Wear it to glam up dark  jeans or add spark to your formal evening wear.

Style H11880
COLOR: Rhine
Price: $3,995

Sphere

This is totally a charming accessory for any red carpet event! Imagine it hanging low across the side, accentuating that elaborate (or even simple) evening gown. Those square Austrian crystals “create a multifaceted mirror ball effect” that one would not need additional accessories to sparkle.

Style M31740
COLOR: Rhine-Boreale
Price: $2,495
 

The Perfect Dress for Your Body Type November 23, 2009

Filed under: Dress Dilemma — Mandy Childers @ 4:09 PM
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‘Tis the season of merriment – office parties, family reunions, and the like. It is the time of the year when women ransack their closets or head to the stores to find some nice dress so that they could look their best. Choosing the right dress could be a dilemma especially to some (of us) who have problems with body shapes. More often than not, that perfect dress hanging by the rack doesn’t look right when you put it on. It either makes your hips look wider or your bust look fuller. Shopping for that perfect dress could be frustrating. Sometimes, you can’t help wishing you had a body like that of a mannequin or Heidi Klum.Well, you may not have that “perfect” body but you can have that perfect dress. It is important to know which style suits you and what body type you have.

Straight Body Type ( Rectangle or Ruler)

This body type is mostly common. The hips and bust are balanced and the waist is not very defined. The bottom may be more flat than round. If you have this body type, try to put emphasis on your waist while making  sure you dress the top and bottom of your body proportionally.

Tops: wide collared jackets; structured sleeves; shirts with embellishments across the bust; V-neckline with empire waist; wide belted tops

Bottoms: pants with wide waist band; flap rear pockets; boot cut or flared jeans with low or mid-rise waist; skirts with details -seaming or pockets- around the hips

Dresses: full or flutter sleeves; ruched or draped across the bust; off shoulder dresses with A-line or full skirt; fitted or belted waist

Pear Body Type (Triangle)

If you have seen a pear, then you may have an idea how this body type looks like. The lower body (hips) is larger than the upper body (bust). The waist however, is well-defined. The key to styling this body type is to bring the attention to the upper body while still defining the waistline and making the lower body proportionate to the upper body.In other words, try to create an hourglass figure.

Tops: wide, V-necklines; fitted waist and details around the bust and shoulders;  structured or padded shoulders to enhance the upper body.

Bottoms: A-line skirts; lightly gathered skirts that skim the bottom; dark pants with no or minimal pockets; mid-rise waist; boot-cut or trouser-cut jeans.

Dresses:  full sleeves and wide necklines; A-line skirts and fitted waist; off shoulder or strapless

Apple Body Type ( Inverted Triangle)

This is just the opposite of the pear body shape. The upper body is proportionally large –  broad shoulders, full bust, wide back. The waist and hips are slim and the bottom may be more flat than round. If you have this body type, you will need to bring emphasis on your lower body to create that hourglass figure.

Tops: shirts with deep scoop necklines; vertical details; deep V-neck shirts that wrap around the waist, nipped-in waist

Bottoms: full or ballerina type skirts; A-line skirts; wide-legged dress pants with flap rear pockets; full legged cargo pants

Dresses: wrap dresses with deep V-neck and full skirt; coats with large hip pockets

Whatever your body type is, the key is to create a balance to your proportions. It is also important to know your best assets. So next time you shop for that perfect dress, try to take note of your body features, too.

 

MK Demi Shoulder Bag in (Perfect) Red November 17, 2009

Filed under: Bag 'Em Up! — Mandy Childers @ 11:57 AM
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They say every woman should have a little black dress in her closet. I agree. It is an elemental item that can be used anytime of the year – for parties, night outs, formal gatherings, or special dates. What is best to go with a pretty LBD? An equally pretty LRP – little red purse! Red just pops out when paired with black. This color combination brings out allure and sophistication. The tricky part is not all reds are created equal.  Some shades of red are too bright, others too dull.

I find this Michael Kors Demi shoulder bag just the perfect shade and size. The luxurious patent leather brings out the richness of the color and the gold tone hardware gives a hint of glimmer to this elegant ensemble. The buckled shoulder strap also makes it adjustable and the zipper top makes it accessible. Although this purse does not have many details, the whole design still looks elaborate. It is an embellishment itself – the cherry on top.

This shoulder bag is definitely one of those essentials in a woman’s closet. Not only is it perfect for that little black dress but also a gorgeous pop of color to dull grays, dark blues, or even plain whites. In fact, it could go with so many colors. It is the perfect red accessory.

 

Season Essentials November 16, 2009

LV Website

It may almost be the end of the year but it is not yet late to grab yourself some of this season’s essentials. This season is all about colors, materials, and patterns. But it doesn’t stop there. I am talking about striking color combination, rich materials, and elegant patterns.

Colors

A few designers have come up with a bizarre idea of clashing flaming colors such as red and pink. However, paired with safe neutrals like black, the result is stunning. Other raging colors that are popular this season are pink, orange, and burgundy. While fall/winter colors such as black, gray, brown, and blue are also popular. To add brightness to those dark colors,  try adding light or bright- colored accessories to your outfit.

Jason Wu Fall 2009 Oscar de la Renta - Red Silk Charmeuse

Gucci - Gray Donna KaranForever 21 - Brown top

Materials

Bold colors are made even bolder with rich, pronounced materials. During the fall fashion show, different designers used variety of materials – chiffon, organza, silk, wool. In the real world, sequins, leather , and laces are dominating.

Sequins are not my favorite. They remind me of fish scales. A sequined skirt may look dazzling on the runway but may give a bad impression on the streets. However, an accessory with nicely done sequins is not bad like this Kate Spade El Morocco Paola clutch. It is surprisingly smooth and soft.

Kate Spade El Morocco

You can also look for smaller sequins like what these sequined shorts from Forever 21. They look shimmery and from afar, the sequins are not obvious at all.

Forever 21 - Sequin Glam Short

If I am not comfortable wearing sequins, I am sure a lot of people are not comfortable wearing clothes made of leather. In exception to jackets, leather is conventionally made into shoes and other accessories. Not everyone can wear a leather skirt or top without being thought of as a dominatrix. Last summer though, Angelina Jolie showed up on the premiere of Brad Pitt’s movie wearing a leather dress from Michael Kors. I must say it was far from freaky. Angelina’s queenly poise and Michael Kors subtle elegant design were a perfect team.

Angelina Jolie

Slip into a pair of skin-tight dark leather pants and you’ll be amazed at how much slimming effect it could give you. In this tough economy, pleather (plastic leather) or man-made leather is a wiser choice.

Derek Lam  leather pants Theory - Tobie Leather Pants

Although sequins and leather may get skeptical frowns from many, laces are probably more favored by most women. They speak of femininity and bring a romantic effect on any piece of clothing. Rummage through your closet and try to find some lacy skirt or tops, if not go shopping for one. There are  easy to find and affordable.

Forever 21 Lace Tiered skirt Charlott Russe Lace Cami

Patterns

Unlike the colors and materials popular this season, the patterns are more mellow and vintage. You will see a lot  plaid and  patterned tights.

Traditionally, plaid is just a design for Scottish kilts. But in the world of fashion, it is made popular by Burberry. I personally associate plaid designs with Burberry – classic, subtle, and elegant.  But this season, you need not wear a kilt or buy an expensive Burberry coat to show off your favorite plaid. Used in scarves, jackets, skirts, and even dresses, there are so many ways to display this design.

Burberry Forever 21 Plaid Babydoll Dress Gucci - Plaid Forever 21 Plaid Ruffled Dress JC Penney

On the other hand, floral designs are everywhere especially among women’s clothes. This season though, floral designs are popular in stockings, tights, or pantyhose. These neglected articles of clothing are finally given attention and yes, with floral designs and other patterns, they are quite eye-catching. Some stockings get out of hand from all those bold and colorful lprints but stay safe buy choosing prints that have the same color as your tights.

These Leg Avenue Bohemian print tights are just too much to handle. The swirly details create a not-so-good hypnotic effect.

Bohemian Print Tights

Pick these Betsey Johnson Rose Garden patterned tights instead. The floral designs are noticeable enough but not too distracting to the eyes.

Betsey Johnson

If floral patterns do not suit you, try even simpler patterns like these Banana Republic diamond patterned tights.

Banana Republic

Inasmuch as it is important to buy classic designs and keep your own style, a little dash of trendy stuff will not hurt. Besides, trends come and go. You’ll never know when you need to use those argyle socks again.

 

Dress Shirts: French Cuffs November 15, 2009

Filed under: Apparel — Mandy Childers @ 10:20 PM
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Twill Dash StripeWhat are cuff links for if not to go with French cuff shirts? As fancy as those cuff links can be, they won’t be of any use if you do not have these shirts.

Choosing shirts can be difficult though, especially when you do not know your exact size. Unlike T-shirts, French cuff shirts and other dress shirts are not classified as small, medium, or large. There may be some manufacturers that mark their dress shirts as standard sizes but for a proper fit, it is important to know how to find your right size.

There are two factors to consider: the collar girth and the sleeve length. The collar girth is measured from the center of the top button and the center of the corresponding buttonhole. The sleeve length on the other hand is measured from the center of the back and shoulders to the wrist. A man who wears a large size T-shirt may not necessarily fit in a dress shirt marked as large. In the United States, off the rack dress shirts consist of two numbers to indicate the size. For example, 16, 32, meaning the neck girth is 16 inches and the sleeve length is 32 inches. However, to lessen the number of shirt fabrication, some shirts are marked as 16, 32/33  which means that the sleeve length is 33 inches but the cuff has been adjusted so that it will fit the shorter length. As for the waist size, most shirts are cut wide to accommodate most belly sizes.  It will be helpful to have a tailor or a sales person at your favorite store take your measurement so that you will get the right size each time you buy shirts.

There are several distinguished shirt makers around the world like Giorgio Armani and Ralph Lauren but you should not limit your choices. There are also many stores that sell affordable French cuff shirts like Paul Frederick, Macy’s, JC Penney, JoS. A. Bank, and even Kohl’s. So long as it is the right fit, color, and fabric for you, it should make you feel good about yourself.

These three dress shirts I found online are great examples of simple elegance and comfort minus the high price.

Paul Frederick Satin Link Stripe French Cuff Shirt; soft and lustrous 100’s 2-ply broadcloth; classic black & white design; traditional straight collar; sale $39.95; available online -www.paulfrederick.com

Paul Frederick Satin Link Stripe

Stafford® Signature Executive French Cuff Shirt; iron-free performance; wicks moisture away from the skin; sale $24.99 to $27.99; available at JC Penney

Stafford

Geoffrey Beene Dress Shirt, Cool & Dry French Cuff; cotton/polyester; ultra -soft and smooth; adjustable button cuff; spread collar; $22.50; available at Macy’s

Geoffrey Beene

 

Personal Touch Makes a Style November 14, 2009

Filed under: What's In, What's Hot — Mandy Childers @ 1:36 AM
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Fashion FanGrowing up in a tropical country was quite a breeze when it came to buying outfit and staying in style. I could buy a shirt and wear it anytime of the year. Yes, trend would change every now and then but it did not change every three months. I also tried to remain safe by purchasing clothes with classic styles – simple cuts, neutral colors, and minimal designs. Moving to the US was quite an adventure. It was a whole new experience for me – new environment, new culture, new crowd to blend in.

Keeping up with the trend and keeping your personal style could be tricky and sometimes frustrating especially when you need to change your wardrobe four times a year. On the other hand, it could be fun. Different seasons could mean your wardrobe would never go boring. However, if you are not an heiress or a movie star, changing your wardrobe could also mean breaking the bank. Plus, a pile of unwanted clothes in your tiny closet at the end of the year.

Still, keeping up with the latest in fashion is important to a lot of  people. Although, it is always wise to keep a personal style. Some movie stars have it. Angelina Jolie sticks to solid colors and simple cuts, Renee Zellweger wears Carolina Herrera, and Emily Rossum is noticed for her romantic, feminine dresses.

It is important to know what you really like in terms of colors, designs, prints, fabric, and cuts. More importantly, it is essential to know how those factors go well with your skin tone and body type. For example, if you have a “pear shape” or a “triangle” body – narrow shoulders and wider hips, you want to draw attention away from the lower part of your body. Instead of wearing V-necks and  shirts/dresses that accentuate your hips, it is better to wear A-line skirts or empire dresses.

There are many articles on the Internet about fashion tips for different body types but I recommend trying out different clothes yourself. You don’t need to buy them. If there is a dress that you like and want to know if it looks good on you, try it on! Trying on clothes is free and it will give you ideas on which styles suit you. Also, you will know which fabric works best with your body. The key is you should feel comfortable with what you wear. Being comfortable is the key to looking your best. An elaborate ruffle shirt may look awkward if you don’t feel it suits your body well. Yet, a simple A-line dress may flow gracefully with your movement if you feel at ease wearing it.

So, whether you are in a tropical paradise or in a place with unpredictable weather, it is significant to keep a personal style. This will help you narrow down the things to look for when shopping for clothes or even shoes. After all, what is the purpose of following the trend when it doesn’t work with you?

Blue Dress Black Top Gray Shirt