A College Student's Obsession With Haute Couture

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Safari: What to Wear This Summer and Not Regret It Next Summer

Khaki is back with a vengeance. Here are the guilt-free ways to capitalize on the safari trend without feeling like everything you buy will just go out of season next summer.

#1 Rule for Potential Fads: Accessorize!

Bangles and bracelets are a great way to twist an outfit into a safari theme without breaking your budget. The bracelet by Accessories & Beyond for $264 is perfect for this season, and because it's gold and leather - it's not only trendy but unique and can therefore be worn for years to come. And one can never go wrong with a bangle by Kenneth Jay Lane. He is the ultimate designer in modern jewelry - just be careful, I don't see anyone wearing his strawberry necklaces anymore. If you decide to buy into his seasonal accessories, make sure you pick something chic and classic so that it can be wearable in the future - or be smart about spending your money and opt for this wood bangle for only $40.

Rule #2: A girl can never have enough bags.

Bags are timeless. Case in point - that bottom bag is Henry Beguelin circa 2006 the "Eldorado L" in ebony crocodile. And it's mine :). So I guess I'm all set for my safari bag. For those of you without a khaki bag in your stronghold, above are some other options. Pictured are Ginette Etc. the canvas tote for $280 and the Gustto patent bag for $950. I highly suggest a bag as the easiest way to show off for the safari trend and truly make it last - though it may seem like now it breaks the bank, you'll thank yourself in 20 years and you still have a gorgeous bag (now deemed vintage) that is as good as new and just as classically beautiful.

Rule #3: When in doubt, go for a pair of shoes- you can trust that your size will never change.

Nude shoes have been around for winter - it's time to add some sandals to your summer collection. When it comes to shoes, I always prefer simplicity. Girls with orange spray-tan skin beware, these shoes will make your feet and legs look even more orange. Pictured above are a Kalliste sandal for $375 and a Pour La Victoire for $226. And while nude shoes might go out of style after summer (something tells me they will...), you could definitely get away with throwing them to the back of your closet and waiting a few years for the trend to return. Because not only is fashion predictably cyclical, but your shoe size doesn't change - that's the beauty of emphasizing accessories as representatives of trends.

Rule #5: A Classic Trench is REQUIRED of ANY Basic Wardrobe - So Invest!

Pick your color and pick your silhouette because trenches have always been in style and that will NEVER change. Don't be afraid to spend on this one ladies, because you will most definitely get your money's worth in wear out of this light jacket. Gryphon has come out with an entire line of trenches, three of them pictured above, the dress jacket ($875), belted lab coat ($515), and army brat ($560). For trendier flair, try the Moschino Cheap and Chic short sleeve trench $1,585. My favorite detail is the collar - it looks adorable popped.

Rule #6: When Accessories Fail - Spend Wisely on Clothing with Classic Lines, Patterns, and Colors
This tunic by Milly for $268 is absolutely gorgeous. The silk detailing will never get old or tacky and neither will the mini bell sleeves. My only concern is the length (it's really short!) so after this season, heed caution in pairing it with jeans/leggings/nothing in the future.

I promise my updates will become much more frequent after this weekend. I'm just swamped with school work/applications/CPC duties. Look forward to the next designer of the week ***shhh it's a secret!

Happy Safari Shopping :)

Friday, March 21, 2008

Trends for Fall '08

I've compiled a hodgepodge of trends from this year's fall runway trends. The photos are compliments of style.com and feel free to delve in deeper to the designers who often come from "off the beaten path" so to speak.

A gorgeous feminine trench like this one from Aquascutum makes a bold statement. Choose one with a beautiful pattern and a classic silhouette or go the opposite with a tight-fitting trench, lots of attachments, and a steel gray wool (for those brave enough to never wear sweaters in fall and have perfect bodies). Just don't do both.

Texturize your wardrobe for fall! This gorgeous dress from Aquascutum really demands presence. And don't forget about the shoes... if you're going to go black and white for fabric make sure you choose shoes wisely - like these combination black and white ones for the sophisticated and classic at heart or go for bold colors - just be careful not to take away from the beautiful textures of your clothing.

Armand Basi also delivers on the mixing of textures - but what I really love about this photo is how he works such bold beautiful colors effortlessly into the outfit without taking away from the beauty of sweater and skirt. *Also to note: leather quarter gloves scrunched (as seen in countless runways) in canary yellow.

ORANGE ORANGE ORANGE is all anyway keeps commenting on for fall, like this leather baby-doll from Armand Basi. Caucasians be ware! Orange does not mix with complexions of the orange hue (stop the fake tanning NOW) and pale people will look evermore milky-white. If you rock the milky white look, go for it - or ship yourself off to Cabo San Lucas for a natural bronze in order to wear orange. You have been warned.

Also on everyone's list for fall: the one shoulder dress. I would also like to heed warning with this trend. Busty girls (like myself) will always have trouble pulling off this trend because it puts all of the weight on one should and there is inevitable boob-spillage on the other side without proper support. Therefore, I recommend this look from Balmain. It's beautiful and symmetrical instead of the typical lopsided effect and will literally look great on every body type.

Test the waters of combining brown and black (blasphemous, I know). This is no joke. Just sneak a peek at Doo.Ri's collection for fall. And there are those quarter leather gloves again...

One of my most favorite trends for fall is PLAID!!! Not in the farmer coming off of the cornfields sort of way, more in the catholic school girl fashion. But be careful not to get yourself caught in looking like a catholic school girl. Instead, opt for plaid as a statement in your wardrobe and go for chic and edgy lines (rather than the typical pleated skirt) like this high-waisted look from DSquared^2. Other options include the tote and shoes. I'm personally looking for a tote to go with my wardrobe for fall; it will really be a bold accessory for my semi-boring work clothes.

Last but certainly not least, my absolute favorite trend for fall: the long scarf, tucked beneath a belt, over a short jacket. The trend first caught my eye on the young lady in gray by the wonderful Sartorialist. And then I saw it on the runway by Duro Olowu and I literally fell deeper in love with the style. I need to go buy myself some fabulous belts to rock this look pronto because I already know which jacket I'm going to pair with which scarf - so excited!

Looking at all of these trends make me yearn for the autumn months, especially after mother nature cruelly ripped it from my hands this year's past (I live in St. Louis for the school year, and St. Louis only knows hot and cold and nothing in between).

In conclusion, here's your shopping list for fall:
*Quarter, leather, scrunched gloves
*Chic, feminine trench in bold prints and classic lines or tight-fitting long trench with bells and whistles in classic colors
*Orange, with caution
*One-shoulder dress, with caution
*Mixing black and brown (if you dare)
*... And plaid accents

Happy Fall Shopping!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Spring Shoe Shopping

My life is experiencing a bit of turmoil right now (my apologies for the lack of updates). But it's nothing a little shoe shopping can't temporarily fix! Here are my new additions for spring. I am in love :)

These are literally the most comfortable beach shoes in the world. And a little bit of non-obnoxious nor tacky bling makes them match to any beach ensemble.

Patent leather Franco Sarto gladiator sandals? LOVE. They're totally subdued and wearable with anything yet the patent aspect of the sandal gives them something a little extra special and totally unique to this spring.

Now my obsession - Enzo Angiolini Tells. They are flashy and fantastic. They're the perfect red. And these are most definitely going to be my spotlight item for summer. I'm thinking white jeans and sweater with these and either a white day bag or my red clutch for evening. Can't WAIT to rock these!

All shoes and photos compliments of Lori's (lorisshoes.com).

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Welcome to "Tres Chic En Vie"!

First of all, thank you for visiting my new site!

Secondly, a little background about myself: I'm an undergraduate college student at an ivy league institution with a secret obsession on all things haute couture.

Thirdly, I obsess over fashion, but what's the direction of this blog? This blog has gone through many drafts as I have developed and refined my passions for fashion mostly in the privacy of my online journal. Through the comments of my friends on various "posts," I have created my direction from wishlists stemming from Urban Outfitters and Shopbop.com to the classic designers of New York Fashion Week and beyond. Ultimately, I hope to illustrate the glamour, wonder, and reality of fashion.

So without further or do, I would love to present my first Spotlight Designer - and who better to do this on than non-other than the master himself, Alexander McQueen? Inspired by a trip to India, McQueen developed a storyline for his collection that begins in nature where a young girl within a tree breaks free and becomes a princess. The transformation is visually breath-taking. Behold:

In the darkness of the 600-year-old tree:

Beginning to break free from the darkness:

Becoming a Princess:

Being Royalty (notice the deeply rich and bold primary colors):

The Queen has arrived:

Thank you to Style.com for the photos