My 2017 Fall Trend Favorites

Can you feel Fall in the air? 

Are you as excited as we are about Fall style? 

Eh, maybe you are, maybe you aren't. I don't blame you. It's not an easy task letting go of warm weather and longer days. I am a real nostalgic when it comes to summer - always have been. 

But what if, rather than focusing on what we are losing, we focused on all the new memories we are about to create, moments we are about to experience, and things we are about to gain with the new season?

To me, a new season brings its own set of trends and tendencies, so I like to open myself wide for new inspiration and new work to come and sweep me off my feet. I also know that it's time to make the last months of the year count. 

Giving new life to last year's coats/jackets/boots and adding new seasonal items to my wardrobe is my way of embracing the new season with purpose, intention and fierceness. It's also my way of inviting all the awesome things the Universe has in store for me. When I feel great, I act on my goals more easily and more decisively. 

I invite you to find inspiration in places you've never looked before. Be creative. Be thoughtful. Let your intuition + feelings be your driver. Seek those feel-good moments + experiences that entice your inner being to be greater than what you tell yourself. Give your authentic-self the opportunity to inspire + be inspired.

With that said, here are the trends of Fall 2017 I am looking forward to the most!

1. 70s Plaid {  J. Crew  }  2. Wide Belts {  Topshop  } 3. Fiery Red {  Farrow  } 4. Statement Earrings {  SHASHI  } 5. Fishnet {  Topshop  } 6. Mid-length Skirts {  Farrow  } 7. Everything Velvet {  Alice + Olivia  } 8. Chocolate Brown {  MAC  in Film Noir } 9. Victorian Collar Shirts {  Citizens of Humanity  } 10. Vintage Florals {  Farrow  } 11. Sleek Backpacks {  Skagen  } 12. Sock Boots {  Topshop  } 13. Vintage Fur {  Miss Selfridge } 

1. 70s Plaid { J. Crew } 
2. Wide Belts { Topshop }
3. Fiery Red { Farrow }
4. Statement Earrings { SHASHI }
5. Fishnet { Topshop }
6. Mid-length Skirts { Farrow }
7. Everything Velvet { Alice + Olivia }
8. Chocolate Brown { MAC in Film Noir }
9. Victorian Collar Shirts { Citizens of Humanity }
10. Vintage Florals { Farrow }
11. Sleek Backpacks { Skagen }
12. Sock Boots { Topshop }
13. Vintage Fur { Miss Selfridge

Summer Sales to Shop Now

Right now is a magical time. And by magical time – I mean this is the perfect time to shop your favorite styles and start squirreling away for the fall season. 

With that said, I mean it when I say – do not fall into the temptation of the beautiful Fall collections you’re about to see drop. Have you seen Zara’s yet?! If you haven’t, stay awaaaayyy. Gah. My team and I took a peek…uh…for inspiration of course (gulp) and I can tell you that the vibrant autumn colors, the shapes, the dresses, the boots are bound to make you melt – not of heat – but of envy. Which can quickly turn into “Hell! I’m just gonna buy it!”.... and then you see the waiting lists, oy.

I tell you – it’s madness out there and you don’t have to participate in it…yet. Hear me out.
 
Summer sales are happening pretty much everywhere (I’m sure your inbox is being bombarded right now as we speak which can be quite overwhelming), so my shopping advice is simple:
 
Look for items that you can wear for the rest of the summer and that will easily transition into the fall season. For instance, if you see a dress or a jumpsuit that fancies your little heart, can you envision it with boots and a cool leather jacket/blazer, or could you wear it over a button-down blouse or a light turtleneck sweater. And if your wallet allows it, stock up on closet essentials like plain tees, shirts and jeans.  
 
Also a lot of these online shops still have a sales section for last year’s inventory – as a matter of fact, that category may just be final sales because they are looking to rid off these items. 

Never let the Outerwear/Knitwear/Boots sale sections go unbrowsed…it’s a gold mine! Just make sure you feel good about the sizing and that you do love what you’re buying and actually plan to wear it, because final sale is…well…final. 
 
So I thought we’d give you a head start - Check out the links to these amazing sales below and start building that Fall wardrobe with intention, darling!

1. Striped Apron Dress:  Thomas Mason for J. Crew  2. Pom Pom Hem Straight Leg Jeans:  Topshop  3. Satin Mules:  Sam Edelman  4. Zipped Biker Jacket:  Mango  5. Infinity Crystal Earrings:  Anthropologie  6. Knot Tie Slinky Midi Dress:  Topshop  7. Ruffle Jumpsuit:  Need Supply   Also check out these other amazing sales going on now:    Need Supply  - up to 70% off  Loft  - Extra 50% off sale items  Zara  - Starting at 50% off  Anthropologie  - Extra 40% off sale items  J. Crew  - Extra 40% off sale items ; 50% off final sale items  Ann Taylor  - Semi Annual Sale;  up to 70% off  Mango  - from 50 - 70% off everything  Topshop  - 50% off  Aldo Shoes  - 50% off shoes and hand bags  GAP  - up to 50% off everything

1. Striped Apron Dress: Thomas Mason for J. Crew
2. Pom Pom Hem Straight Leg Jeans: Topshop
3. Satin Mules: Sam Edelman
4. Zipped Biker Jacket: Mango
5. Infinity Crystal Earrings: Anthropologie
6. Knot Tie Slinky Midi Dress: Topshop
7. Ruffle Jumpsuit: Need Supply

Also check out these other amazing sales going on now: 

Need Supply - up to 70% off
Loft - Extra 50% off sale items
Zara - Starting at 50% off
Anthropologie - Extra 40% off sale items
J. Crew - Extra 40% off sale items ; 50% off final sale items
Ann Taylor - Semi Annual Sale;  up to 70% off
Mango - from 50 - 70% off everything
Topshop - 50% off
Aldo Shoes - 50% off shoes and hand bags
GAP - up to 50% off everything

Style Stop with Maison DNA - Interview Recap

Jesse Stuckey and Beth Loomis are the brains behind Maison DNA, a vintage boutique located in Newport. Last month they welcomed me into their treasure-filled world and answered a few questions for our Style Stop FB live Interview. 

Watch the video here or read our recap below!

What surprises people the most when they visit the shop for the first time? 

What surprises people most upon visiting the shop for the first time is our unique atmosphere. Our historic building, eclectic decor and curated clothing collection all work seamlessly together to make for a magical shopping experience. First time visitors and regulars alike love that everything in our store has its own personality, energy and story. From the clothes, to the decor, right down to our price tags, everything we do and carry has a sense of intention, purpose, uniqueness and fun attached to it.

How do you decide that an item is worthy to grace the racks of Maison DNA? 

The process for deciding whether or not to carry a specific item on our racks starts with the surprisingly simple question of "Do we love it?" It may seem unorthodox but instead of carrying inventory that we think people will like, or based on trend, we purposefully do the opposite. Instead, our philosophy is to carry product that inspires and excites us first and foremost. Then, if almost by magic, this energy is subconsciously picked up by our customers and in turn they become inspired and excited by what we carry.

On a side note, I feel like this process is based on intuition or instinct which also inadvertently leads us to picking specific styles or fashions a few weeks or months before they become a trend on the runway.

Once we give the initial OK to an item, but before bringing it "home", we meticulously check for quality, condition, craftsmanship and overall visual impact. 99% of the time, even the tiniest flaw on a piece is a deal breaker and although we loved the piece initially, it does not make the cut and we leave it behind. Such strict guidelines not only allow us to deliver a product of value and quality to our customers but allows us to take pride in what we do.

Where do you source pieces from?

After being in the vintage fashion industry for almost 20 years, we are fortunate to have made invaluable contacts in the business. For the first time, without giving all the magic away, we can say that our inventory comes from professional buyers who have inside access to collections from certain New England "homes" that otherwise the public does not have access to.

The most flattering comment you have ever received...

That'd be from a well dressed gentlemen from Milan visiting Newport for the Summer who told us that Maison DNA would be a big hit where he lives.

To stay connected with Maison DNA, follow them on Facebook and Instagram.  And on your next visit to Newport, be sure to stop by their boutique located at 64 Spring Street!

She So Stylish Feature: Romina Ramos Doing Meaningful Work Abroad In Style

There are many, many women out there doing important work in various places of the world, and most of the time they're out of the spotlight because 1. They prefer to remain free of outside validation of their purpose and their life choices, and 2. Capturing every second of their lives on social media (to show how amazing their lives are) isn't simply their thing. The fact that they alone know it to be true is the only authenticity they want/need.  

These women are freelancers, advocates, ambassadors...they are underground leaders making environmental impact one healthy turtle at a time, and are doing all of that while creating their own narratives. I mean...how inspirational, right! 

Last December I had a wonderful time working with one of these smart + driven women, Romina, as her personal shopper + stylist. If you're a frequent visitor of my blog, you may have noticed that sharing my client's stories is one of my favorite things to do. And this one is definitely worth reading...

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Q: Can you tell us a little bit about your work with turtles and the organization?

I work with endangered leatherback sea turtles in St. Croix, US Virgin Islands. This year marks my third season with the project team at Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge. I patrol a beautiful beach from evening to sunrise to collect scientific data from nesting female turtles. The work is intensive and fun if you like wildlife and aesthetic views. 

Q: What prompted your desire to work abroad? 

Since middle school, I've had an obsession with maps. My favorite class was geography and I told myself that I would discover other countries one day, because I wanted to see how different cultures live day by day. Being American and growing up in a Cabo-Verdean household, I'm naturally drawn to the island life, natural foods, sleepy towns, and beaches.

Q: When you came to me, you were very intentional and decisive about where your personal style was going, can you talk about your style evolution and why this was important to you?

In St. Croix, I travel and work outdoors so a lot of my clothes are basic jeans, shorts and tees with a few nice pieces for outings. Because I'm active, I look younger than my actual age. I was particular about upgrading my wardrobe because I wanted to learn how to dress for my age and body type. There's a different response you get from people when you are and look 26 as opposed to when you look 18. I'm at a time in my life where I'm building on my ideas and networking, so investing in a fresh, new wardrobe seemed right. 

The right outfit for me has to say outgoing and authentic because I'm very grounded to my roots. I'm surrounded by tropical plants, fruit trees, farm animals, and the ocean, very similar to Cabo-Verde (where my family is from). I realized that's where I'm the most happy. For my style evolution, I wanted to play with ocean and desert colors because I'm very attracted to those environments where I live and work in. It's amazing how adding a few essentials such as dressy pants, cute blouses, simple and elegant dresses and jumpsuits can really transform how you feel and carry yourself. 

When I returned to the U.S. for the holidays, I had a budget in mind and knew I needed to stock up on basics and invest in pieces to last me all year long. It made sense to work with you because 1. I needed styling expertise, and 2. My one-week stay was going to be limiting and it was crucial for me to spend most of this precious time with my Rhode Island family, rather than in stores.

Q: What do you like about your wardrobe now? 

It's speaks feminine and maturity! 

Q: What is your favorite thing to do in StCroix on your off time? Your favorite food?

My favorite thing to do in St. Croix is to snorkel with my GoPro Hero4. My favorite food on the island are mangoes. I live on a lush property surrounded by the best mango trees in the west side of the island. 

Q. Do you have any advice for the nomad life seeker out there on where to begin? How to make the leap?

Always be kind to yourself and to others in all situations. Being kind and respectful pays off (especially if you are traveling). You learn to appreciate more and you will receive more. I made the leap when I quit my job, applied abroad again, and traveled on a tight budget for 8 months before I returned to St. Croix. I didn't know where I was headed, but that was okay for me because I felt confident, and I attracted this life that I am living now.  I've gone through so many challenges that I know myself a lot better now and I love that. Be fearless or else you will limit yourself.

Style Stop with Loren Hope - Interview Recap

Before Designer Loren Barham and I were introduced during the Bloggers' RI jewelry tours last spring, I was a fan of her jewelry company Loren Hope and had been watching from afar. What had instantly drawn me to her work was her vibrant 2016 Spring/Summer collection, which had been beautifully styled and photographed in Hawaii.

Each of LH designs makes a statement without intimidating or being pretentious, and because of these characteristics, they are versatile and can be worn for all sorts of occasions, from casual brunch with the in-laws to cocktail hour with the girlfriends. 

Credits: Loren Hope

Credits: Loren Hope

Credits: Loren Hope

Credits: Loren Hope

Truly, I found it impossible not to fall in love with Loren Barham's designs, including how her love story with jewelry began and how it is influencing her business approach. 

From letting her creativity go wild as a child by reassembling old baubles in her grandmother's thrift shop, to her strong desire to reignite Providence's long forgotten title of "Jewelry Capital of the World", it is clear that Loren Barham is on to something precious. Parts used for Loren Hope's luxury level costume jewelry originate 100% from local partnerships. Truly - it does not get any better than this, especially for the Shop Small Shop Local, fashion-inclined fans - like me. 

When asked about her inspiration behind a collection and where it comes from, Loren Barham said to have always been drawn to nature, art, and architecture from the art deco period. 

Loren Hope has been featured in ELLE, Vogue, InStyle, Real Simple, The Zoe Report, Glitter Guide, Lucky Magazine, Southern Living, Redbook, Refinery 29...the list goes on.  To add one achievement on top of another, LH's biggest highlight in 2016 was their new partnership with giant retailer Nordstrom, which now carries their pieces both in stores and online. 

I invite you to watch our full interview to get better acquainted with this North-Carolinian-turned-Rhode-Islander designer, who is making waves in our little state and beyond!  Pieces featured in the video can be found below.

Aya Lariat in Crystal

Aya Lariat in Crystal

Style Stops with OR are FB live video series, where we interview designers and shop owners in their studios/boutiques, showcase their work and their designs, and get to talk style and their most coveted pieces. Follow our Style Stops on Facebook!

 

 

Spring & Closet Transition

It's not warm yet in New England (as I write this, it is currently about 67 degrees with a high wind warning), but nevertheless it's not too early to start dressing like it's spring in my book. Although I have not put away my winter wardrobe yet (secretly counting the days until I can officially do so), what I've done is getting my lighter, more colorful pieces out and mixing them with my wintery pieces.

And it is small changes like that that will do wonder for the mind and spirit! I like to think that my current wardrobe is in a transition period, and I want to feel joyful about it all the time. 

Turtlenecks are appropriate to transition with into spring and then fall, because they can be paired with pretty much everything - with jeans, trousers, skirts, under a dress, over a dress. I mean...endless possibilities. Of course not all turtlenecks are the same, so the pairing will depend on the turtleneck style. 

Both top and bottom are from Zara; the culottes were part of ZARA winter sale back in February. These sandals with turtoise heels are about 4 years old; there were part of a limited collection from H&M. They are my go-to tan sandals every year and I am hoping not to have to retire them soon because they have been there every step of the way (from blogging days to first-time mom to business launch). Not being melodramatic...at all (le sigh).

Speaking of motherhood, I was joined by a guest who forever has my heart. 

Signed ~ Olivia R

Photography: Brittanny Taylor