Archive | January, 2010

Lay it on thick

17 Jan

Among the many techniques of styling clothes, layering is  the most effective and can breathe life into any number of basic, simple pieces you may own.  Layering can give you warmth without adding bulk, it allows you to mix colors and patterns in new ways for unlimited permutations for tops and bottoms. And it allows you take your spring/summer wardrobe into the bitter temperatures of Dec, Jan, Feb, and (in NYC), March.  

There’s a great tutorial in the January issue of Lucky Magazine on layering.  Below are my suggestions for one way I have employed layering in my look. And, after my suggestions, are some even better ones from a very close friend of mine, Teresa, who makes it her business to layer daily (in fact, she shops with it in mind)

Start with:  

Only the very top of this lacy bandeau is meant to peek out to add prettiness, lacy-ness, and a little allure.


Add on:  

A functional plaid print (leave the top 2-3 buttons undone) goes over the bandeau. When partially buttoned, it creates a v-neck line (the universally flattering neck). You could stop here, but why when there's clearly more you can add?


Slip over:  

Make sure you keep the buttons undone, pop the collar and sleeves out of the neck and cuffs, et voila...your top half is layered and you're not feeling like you're wearing 2" thick wool from the Scottish highlands.


On the bottom?  

Keep it simple with sleek black trousers.


Top it off with:  

Even with the three layers, your look will still be fairly simple so you have room to add juice with a multi-strand necklace like this one.


And now…let’s her from Teresa and her favorite lovable layer looks.   

To me, layering is not only about putting clothes on top of one another, but mixing textures for visual appeal as well. It’s a way for a person to be able to stand out from the crowd of J Crew and Banana Republic basics, by using these basics to create multiple interesting outfits.  

When I get up in the morning, I start with a basic layer. I usually pick one piece out of my closet and create from there. Whether it be a lacy camisole, a belt, a vest or a pair of pants. Then I build from there. The key to choosing pieces for your wardrobe, is to make sure that they are light enough so that layering doesn’t add bulk to your frame. When choosing vests make sure the fit is in the waist and clutches your body. When choosing sweaters for winter, wrap sweaters usually work best since you choose the fit for them.  

Layer Lession #1: A day at the office

The under-most layer peaking out from under the top, like a Hanky Panky black camisole:   

Over this thin, lacy number, add in a beautiful DVF silk top  

Next up, a more visual item like I would start with this item  


Follow this up with a fitted blazer, which can be worn open with the sleeves pulled up:  


Finish up the look with a pair of Tweed cropped pants:   


Textured socks:  


and cute boots  


Layer Lesson #2: Going Out   

 When you’re going out, the easy thing is to throw on a dress, and you’re done. Living in NYC you see a lot of party dresses so I opt for something a bit different…  

The starting point for a night out on the town (can you tell I’m loving cropped pants at the moment?):  


Then a light top


Add an eye-catching vest…for winter, of course  


Finalized with fun shoes…and I mean fun  


To add one more detail, wear a tie as a belt to add a quirky change. Or use a silk belt as a tie – either on top of your shirt, let it hang, or as an accessory under your shirt. There really are no rules to how this can be done. Sometime you will triumph, sometimes you may not, but you will always be able to have your own sense of style!