The Black Midi Dress: Changing up your LBD

Changing Up Your Black Dress Game

The black midi dress

Lately, I’ve been looking for ways to change up my black dress game. In the last post I suggested wearing all blue instead of the usual head to toe black. In this post, I want to talk about the black midi dress.

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I’ve been jokingly calling the black midi dress the LongBD. It’s such a classic that it can easily take the title of the go-to dress in your closet.

Forever21 black Midi dress
Forever21 scoop back dress
T by Alexander Wang tank dress
Rag & Bone tank dress

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The dress doesn’t need to be expensive to look good. In fact, the simpler the dress, the more valuable it looks. However, if you’re looking for something nicer than the forever21 options, this Alexander Wang is a great choice; this Milly dress is similar as well. I also love this ruffle Elizabeth and James dress and this Alice + Olivia dress for a more high-end look.

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I prefer to keep the dress simple because I paired it with Christian Louboutin pumps. I never want to look like I’ve piled on every fancy designer item I own just to look good. We can look classic and sophisticated without spending a lot of money. But anytime I wear Ruby Woo lipstick, I want to match it with the red sole! :P

Christian Louboutin suede pump
Simple patent leather pump
Round toe leather pump
Louboutin platform pump

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The black midi dress (actually I think this is considered tea length) is one of those trends that became popular recently with the rest of the longer body con dresses. I also saw it worn a lot with a trench, and I have to say I loved the look. I never say no to a good trench ;)

Martuska soft trench
Mango flowy trench
Nordstrom draped trench
The ROW spring trench

Jewelry and Accessories

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The simplicity of the whole look calls for some jewelry. The Madewell washband ring is perfect if you like big rings, this Kenneth Jay Lane geometric ring is a similar choice.

I love ring sets because you can get a lot of different rings in one, like this Gorjana set. Square rings are another favorite, especially this rose gold set, or this mixed metals set from Chloe Greta.

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I know it seems like I wear it all the time, but that’s the point of having a Chanel bag! It’s a great investment because it doesn’t go out of style. You will carry it for many years and it’s perfect for a black midi dress!

Chanel flap bag
Quilted camera bag
Chanel shoulder bag

I hope you guys consider changing up your LBD, and trying out some different looks!

Navy is the new black

Navy Is The New Black

Alternatives to all black outfits

As a frequent wearer of all black, I am always looking for ways to change my look around. Black is perfect especially for nights out, but navy is a close cousin.

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The all blue outfit is a great way to change up your go-to black outfit or LBD. The navy top is a bit darker than the skirt, which adds even more texture and breaks up the monotony.

 

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My skirt is Helmut Lang — the king of asymmetrical knits (here is a similar dress).

I love asymmetrical skirts because they’re flattering on any figure. The wraparound front hides all the Nutella sandwiches I ate perfectly ;) ;)

Revolve Oasis skirt
Revolve Maui Waui skirt
Missguided velvet skirt (with matching top)
Missguided asymmetrical skirt and top
Revolve sueded asymmetrical skirt

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The navy top is one of my favorites because — you guessed it — I made it!

This used to be this Phillip Lim dress, but after appearing on Gossip Girl it became so recognizable that wearing it now just reminded everyone how old it (and I) was. This top was the lining underneath the sheer Swarovski crystal top. It was very loosely attached, so I separated it from the top and cut it to tank top length. The remaining sheer part will soon have the lantern sleeves removed and cut into a scalloped hem crop top :)

Phillip Lim drape tank top
Phillip Lim silk tank
Milly jewel neck tank
Madewell silk top

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Shoes and Accessories

Another trendy item that looks great with navy is the tan lace up sandal.

Aquazzura lace up sandal
Sam Edelman stacked heel shoe
Manolo Blahnik stacked heel sandal
Stuart Weitzman low heel sandal
Missguided barely there sandals

The stacked heel trend is something I’ve seen around a lot. I feel like these shoes makes my feet look huge, which sucks because they’re so easy to walk in! If they looks good on you, I am so jealous!

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Finally, no look is complete without the perfect bag. This Chanel is the perfect touch to make a navy outfit look chic and perfect for a night out.

Chanel full flap bag
Quilted shoulder bag
Chanel tassel bag

I hope you start to see navy as the perfect color to change up your all black looks. Because it’s dark, it still has the night out feel we come to expect from black, but the color adds more interest to your outfit and the asymmetrical details make you stand out!

zzzquil

zzzquil And What Keeps Us Awake At Night

Why do we read blogs? We like them because they are not a traditional form of media. It is a platform for the bloggers’ opinions. Blogs are not owned by a company. We don’t have to worry about a blogger shilling for a big brand.
I see a lot of bloggers reviewing products in an overly positive light. In fact, I don’t think I’ve seen one negative review about anything!
The whole point of blogs is that people get to share their honest opinion.

What sets me apart from a big-name, famous fashion blogger is that I share my opinion without worrying about upsetting someone. Brands do not sponsor this blog, and all opinions stated here are my own.

 

The Good And Bad

I was recently sent a sample of zzzquil for consideration. I want to write my review as honestly and as accurately as possible.

Having taken this sleep aid before, I knew that it was basically Benadryl. Benadryl is the brand name for diphenhydramine, an allergy medication that acts as an anticholinergic. The bad thing about this drug is that it prevents your brain from sending certain signals to other cells. It passes the blood-brain barrier causing drowsiness.

Zzzquil markets this drug as a sleep aid. Advertising this drowsiness side effect as the purpose of the drug. I find this problematic. Diphenhydramine is an allergy medication, yet zzzquil sells the exact same drug for a different purpose.

This country has a tremendous healthcare problem. It ranges from lack of affordable care, to big name pharmaceutical companies creating customers rather than cures. A big corporation such as Nyquil should have more respect for the public’s trust. I believe it constitutes drug misuse to take diphenhydramine for anything other than its main purpose — to stop allergies. I feel like it is condoning incorrect usage of certain medications to suggest a consumer take a higher dose of a product to achieve a different result.

What zzzquil can do is add more transparency to this product, so that users understand exactly what drugs they are putting in their body — we know no one reads those long papers that come in the package.

Zzzquil is relatively tame. Compared to prescription sleeping pills, which contain some nightmare ingredients, this drug is nothing. It was a little harder to get up the next day, but I had no long term side effects. It would be a great medication to keep around in case of emergency insomnia incidents.

 

In short, does zzzquil put you to sleep? Yes. But this suggestion to misuse a very serious drug had me up all night.

seamless day to night looks

Seamless Day To Night Transitions

Three easy day to night looks

I admit, it’s been a while since I worked in an office. But one of my biggest pet peeves during those times was that there was almost no time for a social life. Work ends at five, and if I’m lucky, I’m home at six forty-five (NOT an exaggeration). I’ve missed a lot of fun events and evenings out because I couldn’t create an easy day to night look.

This first transition is a perfect office look, and requires zero to minimal bathroom access!

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The tuxedo shirt can easily be worn over the black Free People bralet, and the Gap pants are perfect for the office. At the end of the day, the lace bralet works well on its own, and the waterfall blazer and lace up heels add a nice touch.

To make a perfect nighttime statement, add a snake ring and body chain to the ensemble.

 

 

I like to do things a little differently, and this next look definitely encompasses that. Instead of changing a shirt, or adding heels, I’ll just take my shirt off and pull my skirt up turning it into a dress!

To be fair, it was sold as a convertible skirt/dress, so I’m not being completely ingenious ;))
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The Gap trench works well for both looks, but especially adds an aura of chic sophistication to the night ensemble. This Alice + Olivia convertible skirt is a similar piece to my DVF dress. I also love this velvet Missguided midi skirt. Any skirt with an elastic waist can be converted day to night, just make sure it’s long enough as a dress!

A simple belt makes this look classic for both the day and night.

Shoes and Accessories

The easiest way to go from day to night is with shoes and accessories. A simple tan pump like these Manolos, will take your black dress into night out LBD territory. The long blazer is a great addition to your work and play wardrobe.

At the places I’ve worked, that slightly above the knee dress length was completely acceptable attire. If that’s not the case at your work, wear some black hosiery in the daytime.

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Changing up the jewelry is key. A watch might be fine for a day to night look. But these earrings would be overkill in an office, or even a daytime brunch.

The Chanel bag can take any look from day to night! Add a simple gold toggle bracelet and your look is complete. Also check out some necklaces from Aurate New York to add a more delicate touch!

 

It’s easy to create chic day to night looks as long as you keep it simple. A lot of times, office clothes just need to be simplified for a perfect night out look. That’s because something classic never goes out of style!

PopSugar Must Have Box Unpacking

Unpacking the PopSugar Must Have Box!

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I’ve been fortunate enough to get the PopSugar Must Have Box for the second time! The month of June I was just so overwhelmed by everything I got that I didn’t even think to make an awesome blog post about it :))

Subscription boxes are hot right now, and the PopSugar Must Have Box comes from a popular, reputable brand. If you’re not set on any one thing — just makeup, or just hair products — this box is perfect for you, as it comes with a variety of well-curated goodies.

I love surprises, so opening this box is great since I don’t know what I’m getting!

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Michael Stars Porcelain Skinny Scarf

The first thing I pulled out of the box was this little scarf. I don’t usually wear scarves around my neck, because it’s always too hot, but I’ll definitely be trying it out as a headband!

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Pintrill Pineapple Pin

Hey, did you know that every blogger is for some reason obsessed with pineapples? I have no idea why. But this pin is perfect if you’re looking to join the trend. If not, you can pay homage to your favorite emoji ;)

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Joe Chips Classic Sea Salt Potato Chips

I’ve been addicted to potato chips for years! I loved seeing this in the PopSugar must have box. These chips are great if you’re looking for a quick snack. I definitely polished these off during one of my “photo shoots” where I shot five different outfits for le blahg.

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Sachajuan Hair In The Sun

I don’t go out to the beach that often because honestly, it kind of sucks. Or is that just me? I used this product a few days ago, so I can’t vouch for the UV protection yet. It smells really good, and keeps my hair in place while hiking.
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Oh My Brow! Brow Highlighter in Pearl

Highlighters are a must-have for any makeup fan. That would explain why this pencil was in the must-have box ;))

The colour is very neutral and matches well with the highlighter I already use on my cheekbones. It’s a great way to add a little more definition to the eyes.

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Sunnylife Inflatable Swan Drink Holder

And the piece de resistance of the PopSugar Must Have Box: The Swan floatie!

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Ideally, it would be great in a pool, but I just couldn’t wait! So I tried it out as a drink slash candle holder in the tub. It doesn’t tip over and doesn’t take up too much room, even in my tiny bath!

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House of Pom Emoji Cocktail Napkins

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These cute little emoji napkins are my summer fave. I’ve recently “remodeled” my “balcony,” and it’s great to have some things I can decorate the table with. Now only to invite some friends over!

 

 

If you’ve read this blog before, you know I don’t endlessly shill for products I don’t believe in. I’m really happy PopSugar gave me an opportunity to try their boxes. The PopSugar Must Have Box has a bunch of things I like and will definitely use. And there’s the added bonus of getting surprises every time you get a box!

If you consider getting your very own subscription, use code Shop5 for $5 off the first must have box!!

color of the season

Color Of The Season

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Color trend for Summer 2016

I don’t care what anyone says, sea-foam is the color of the season. It’s perfect for summer. Honestly, I don’t really know the difference between sea-foam and turquoise. I think this dress is a bit more green, but the nice mix of green and blue make it the perfect beachy color.

I’ve been watching this Russian makeover show and the wardrobe stylist always talks about how colors are a good way to set a mood. This dress definitely has a summery, ocean feel to it.
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This Cooper & Ella dress is a perfect sea-foam color, it’s also right on trend with the cold shoulder cutouts. This sea-foam dress is a longer length. If you’re very fair-skinned the light color could wash you out, so go for something brighter like this dress. This Alice + Olivia dress makes a great lightweight nighttime look.

For the office, I love this Ellen Tracy sheath. This Matthew Williamson dress is a gorgeous embroidered turquoise option. And of course, this Missguided dress is perfect for a night out.

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Since my color of the season is so bright, I went with neutral shoes.

Manolo Blahnik Chaos
Schutz Cady sandals
BP Luminate sandals

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The trench would make this dress work in the fall as well. It also helps to integrate color into your wardrobe if you’re not used to it.

The tan trench is a classic, and tones down the color of the season so it can easily be worn in later months.

Gap classic trench
Gap short trench
Burberry trench coat
Neiman Marcus long vest

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Accessories

I wanted to keep the bag neutral too, opting for my vintage Chanel.

Chanel Flap bag
Classic mini Chanel
Quilted shoulder bag

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I try to keep the Chanel down to one item per outfit, but the system kind of broke down. I love these stud earrings and wanted to wear them regardless.

Chanel gold twist earrings
Clip-on Chanel logo earrings
Turn lock CC earrings

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I hope you’re adding more color to your wardrobe, because when fall comes around, you know we’ll be back to wearing all black!

If you don’t like my color of the season feel free to make up your own! Just let me know what you decide ;))

How to bring 90s fashion into the present

How To Bring 90s Fashion Into The Present

crop tops and long skirts

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Everywhere I look, 90s fashion seems to be coming back. The crop top was the first major sign, followed by overalls. While I’m not a fan of overalls, 90s fashion always brings back a hint of nostalgia (yes I’m THAT old), and for some reason memories of TLC videos.

I recently found a picture of myself wearing a crop top and high waist jean shorts from 20 years ago, and I thought ‘how can we blend 90s fashion with the trends of the present?’

For starters, it’s all about silhouettes. Modern trends are more a combination of minimalism with elements from the 90s. In this example, my skirt has clean lines and a form-fitting shape. The slit is a U shape which makes a better fit, different from the shapeless long skirts we saw in the 90s.

The top is also simple, censor bar-type crop top. Not too different from the tops of the 90s, except there’s no writing on it, and no weird cut outs. DIY tip: cut the bottom off an old tube top ;))
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Even the ever popular leather jacket is from 90s fashion. Because of all the snaps and zippers, mine is a bit more 90s looking, but the cleaner styles look very modern.

Trouve leather jacket
Alexander Wang jacket
Blank NYC faux leather
Tory Burch leather moto

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The top makes this look a perfect ode to 90s fashion, as well as an outfit that’s great in the summer.

Urban Outfitters tube top
Dion Lee strapless crop top
Forever21 notched crop top

The architectural looks of the last two tops show a perfect blend of modernism and the 90s.

Missguided is another brand that does a great job of blending the two. This dress, with its sleek look is very minimal and current, but the choker adds a 90s vibe. Choker dresses are huge now, and were a hit in the 90s as well. This dress has all the 90s fashion elements — choker, tube top, and mesh — but the midi length and form-fitting silhouette take it into the present.

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Maxi skirts are another trend that’s come back from the 90s. The difference is, they are no longer shapeless sacks. The form-fitting long skirts are great examples of modern styles.

Helmut Lang Maxi skirt
Helmut Lang draped skirt
Missguided choker cutout maxi dress
Missguided choker midi dress

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Accessories

The bucket bag is also a nod to 90s fashion, as well as the leopard print. And since it’s so cute, I figured we can make it work.

Stella McCartney faux fur bag
les petits joueurs bucket bag
Ferragamo fur bag
Olivia Miller leopard print bag

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Finally, the shoes, one of the easiest ways to tell what decade we’re in. Once again, keeping up with modern trends, my shoes are very minimal. Back in the 90s shoes were bulky with thick flared heels. New shoes are a great way to bring a 90s fashion staple into the present.

Manolo Blahnik Chaos
Stuart Weitzman Nudist
Manolo Blahnik square heel sandal
BP Luminate Sandals

So there you have it, a 90s fashion look brought into the present. Because of the modern silhouettes, we can easily take pieces from past decades and transform them.

Let me know how you modernize your 90s looks!

midi column dress — love it or leave it?

Midi Column Dress

Love it or leave it?

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The midi dress has been making the rounds in fashion circles, and I finally gave in and got one. I always thought these dresses looked so matronly. I didn’t realize that a good fit can actually make this a perfect going-out look.

The midi column dress I chose is actually from Forever21! I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of this dress.

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I always pair this Zara leather jacket with dresses. The ‘hardness’ of the jacket creates a great contrast with the midi column dress, while at the same time maintaining the minimal feel.

Trouve leather moto jacket
Tory Burch jacket
Alexander Wang cropped Moto
BLANKNYC faux leather jacket

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Now for the dress: while you can find a midi column dress nearly anywhere, I went to forever21 to first ease myself into this trend. This dress is on sale, and I thought it would be perfect. I was impressed when I got it in the mail, it has a half-slip lining, and the material is thick and sturdy. I got the small which was just a bit large, but I thought it would be less likely to stretch out.

This Black Halo strapless dress is another great choice with a popover top. This Alice+Olivia dress is another trendy piece with sheer panels. Alexis Rafaeli makes a great midi strapless dress with a slit, and this BB Dakota dress is perfect if you don’t prefer the bodycon look.

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I went with some simple jewelry for this look. Silver rings and chain, and a turquoise bracelet to match my bag

Sterling silver chain

Sam Edelman ring set
Vita Fede mini ring
Vita Fede V ring

Michael Kors bangle
Michael Kors cuff bracelet
Vintage turquoise cuff

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I got this bag as a birthday present to myself (won’t say which one :P).  It comes in virtually every color of the rainbow. I love the blue because it matches my bracelet, and adds just a pop of color to the white and black look.

This is the MAB mini tote from Rebecca Minkoff. Here is another option in the trapeze style everyone is crazy about. They’re great quality, and super affordable! I highly recommend them if you’re looking to upgrade your bag game.

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Finally, my shoes are the Manolo Blahnik patent leather slingbacks. I got these ten or more (!!) years ago, and you’d never be able to tell! They are in excellent condition and have minimal wear even though I wear them all the time. Quality really is impeccable with Manolo Blahnik. Here is a more comfy option. And these Oscar De La Renta heels are similar and just gorgeous!

 

Well, I think I love the midi column dress trend, but let me know what you think!

DIY cross front top

DIY Cross Front Top

YSL into the future

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As you may have noticed, I’ve been wearing crop tops a lot lately. I never thought I’d like this trend as much as I do.

This DIY cross front top is just another spin on the crop tops I love. The cross gives it an upside down V shape, that is a great way for me to make my short upper body look more proportional!

I got this tutorial from a pair & a spare, but I didn’t read it thoroughly ;)) so I ended up having to sew the crossed pieces together in the back since they were too short to tie. You can do that as well, or use a longer tank or dress.

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It’s a pretty simple DIY that doesn’t require any sewing if you do it right! Geneva gives great step by step instructions. Something I unfortunately didn’t photograph while working on mine.

The end result turned out great, and looks just as professional, if not more so, than a forever21 crop top.

These Missguided tops were the inspiration:

Buckle detail wrap top
Bandage crop top
Wrapover crop top

I also love this Alexander Wang crop top, the criss cross is in the straps, which is also a great look. Finally, this ASOS top is another simple option if you don’t feel like making your own.

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The DIY cross front top also allowed me to bring my YSL pants into the future.

I got these slacks vintage in 2007, right after St. Laurent passed away. The small crop top calls for some menswear structured slacks, and these were just right.

YSL vinage trouser (similar here)
St. Laurent grain de poudre pants
St. Laurent high waist pants

They just don’t make them like the vintage YSL pants anymore. But these Akris pants would be a great fit here. Halston is one of my favorite designers, and their high waist pants with a leather waistband are amazing. Of course, Vince is another great designer for some minimalist black pants.

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These pants are actually a very dark brown, or even a grayish black. I wouldn’t normally wear so much black, but the pants offset that a little bit.

Ferragamo Camy clutch
Ferragamo May bag

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I’ve been seeing a lot of celebrities wear the menswear inspired trouser with some Mary Jane shoes. I really like this look, especially since it gives me a chance to wear the Manolo Blahnik Mary Janes I’ve had for years. Yes, the ones from Sex and the City ;)

Since then, these classic shoes have gotten a bit of a makeover. The heel is narrower and the strap is thinner, in this modern version. However, Manolo hasn’t abandoned the classic style either.
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I absolutely loved this DIY cross front top, and have been wearing it a lot!

Do you have any DIY pieces you just love? Leave me a comment with your fave!

 

fashion must haves

Fashion Must Haves

The tan bodycon midi dress

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Few items have been as trendy as the midi body con dress.

I’ve never been a fan of trends, but I got this dress thinking I’ll give it a try, and have included it in my list of fashion must haves for good.

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I love simple things, and the tan midi dress definitely fits in with the minimalism trend. I don’t usually shop for bargain trendy dresses, so I was hesitant to buy this. But from forever21, I figured it is worth the twelve bucks even if I wear it only once.

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Forever21 midi dress
Missguided slit dress
Topshop slit dress

The Herve Leger dress is the original. I believe it was initially called the ‘bandage dress.’ I can see why they changed it. Balmain is another high-end fashion house that brought this dress into the lime light.

Other designers followed suit, and here are some mid-price fashion must haves:

Alice + Olivia dress in white
James Perse tan bodycon
Elliatt midi dress

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When thinking about fashion must haves, this dress has all the qualifications. It’s simple, it’s sexy, easy to copy from a high-end designer, and looks good with everything.

While it’s important to wear what you like, if you’re truly clueless about fashion, that is a good rule to follow. Keep it simple — simple clothes look classic and expensive. Wear something that looks good on you — that will make you look sexy even if it’s not skin-tight. And finally, buy something that looks good with a majority of shoes and bags.

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I don’t know if a sweater will be necessary for a while now that it’s summer. But it’s been cold in the evenings, so I love a soft Cashmere cardigan (especially when it’s on sale like this). This Alice+Olivia bell sleeve sweater would be great for fall as well.

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A close second on the list of fashion must haves is the lace up sandal.

This is yet another item that’s simple, sexy, classic, and goes with everything.

DVF sandals
Rebecca Minkoff lace ups
Valentino sandal (on sale)
Aquazzura sandals (NOT wild things)
Steven Valen lace up sandals

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Another favorite of mine is the mens’ watch. There’s something so cool about a woman wearing one of these. And the rose gold still makes it look very feminine.

Rolex Sky-dweller
Men’s Morphic watch
Seiko rose gold watch
Diesel leather strap
DKNY women’s watch

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Finally, I completed the look with some classic accessories:

Ralph Lauren shopper bag (similar here and here)

Bronze wing earrings
Large wing earrings
Tiffany’s earrings
Pave gold earrings

What are some of your fashion must haves?