Friday Favorites

When the temperature rises, look (and feel) cool with these fashions and accessories that will help beat the heat. Here's my latest fashion editorial as Contributing Editor of Closer Weekly about clothes that keep you cool.

KEEP IT LOOSE
When you’re trying to keep cool, the less you wear, the better. But if you want more coverage, choose styles that don’t hug your body. We’re thinking maxidresses, wide-leg pants and flowy skirts. 

     

Sabine Aya Maxi Dress, $149 Piperlime

ASOS Maxi Dress, $96 ASOS

      

ASOS Full Maxi Dress with Sheer & Side Panels, $124 ASOS

The Motion Stripe Dress by Cameo, $150 Piperlime

     

Gabriella Rocha Lauren Ashley Skater Skirt, $34 Zappos

Prabal Gurung Pansy Print Satin Skirt, $450 Nordstrom

BAN THE BLACK
Not only are pastels and white tops hot this summer, they’ll also keep you totally cool! Black and other dark colors absorb heat and suddenly turn your clothes into a sweatbox. Gross! Instead, trade your black for light colors. 

     

Vintage Stripe Tunic, $98 J. Crew

Joie Alizeh top, $268 Piperlime

LET YOUR TOES WIGGLE 

Goodbye, ballet flats! It’s time to set those toes free. You want the chance to show off a great pedicure and let your feet breathe a bit. Even just a little bit of bare skin in your summer shoes can help your feet escape the heat. Try thongs, gladiator flats or strappy wedges. 

     

Leila Ankle-Wrap Sandal, $160 J. Crew

Yosi Samra Cambelle Flat Metallic Sandals, $138 ShopBop

LET YOURSELF BREATHE

To keep body temps down, always opt for natural fabrics like linen, cotton and silk. They offer breath-ability and are known to regulate temperature. To avoid the wrinkles that come with linen look for blends like cotton/poly. 

Textured Ink Stripe Pant by Splendid, $128 Splendid

CREATE SOME SHADE

Direct sun is not only a hazard for your delicate skin, it can also raise your body temperature. Try a wide-brimmed hat in straw, raffia or cotton canvas so it’s lightweight and comfortable. But don’t think that means you can skip the sunscreen! Reflected light can cause major skin damage, too. 

     

Airy Summer Straw Hat, $31 J. Crew

Tory Burch Classic Grosgrain Fedora, $61 Tory Burch

 

 

Stripes can be both playful and sophisticated depending on your color choices. Personally, there's rarely a stripe I don't like and I'll admit I have a bit of an obsession with striped tees, skirts and dresses. Here's my latest statement-making stripes advice as contributing editor to Closer Weekly. Stripe it rich in your wardrobe.

You usually see stripes in a classic navy and white, but multihue streaks scream "summer," too! If you're feeling timid then tone down your look with a cardigan or lightweight denim jacket.

Choose your mood. Bright colors put off an energetic vibe, while patterns with a neutral shade like gray look chic. 

Make stripes work overtime. A striped t-shirt may be a daytime staple, but a sleek silhouette like a striped pencil skirt makes it date night appropriate.

Since we shared plenty of colorful brights in the magazine, I kept my additional picks to more subtle combinations.

More Striped Picks

Sassy office attire.

Nicholas Exclusive Angled Zipper Detail Striped Skirt, $395 Intermix

 

So chic! This dress is perfect for a summer cocktail party.

Jonathan Simkhai Striped Textured Jacquard Dress, $626 Net-a-Porter

The classic stiped t-shirt for jeans, under a blazer or paired with an A-line skirt.

Rag & bone/JEAN Striped 3/4 Sleeve Tee, $115 Intermix

Color combos and stripes that keep the eye moving.

Antonio Marras Multi Striped Midi Skirt, $745 Avenue32

These stripes will balance your curves from top to bottom.

3.1 Phillip Lim Navy Striped Sleeveless Dress, $330 Avenue 32

Vertical stripes will slim, while a horizontal striped pant will add weight.

Cool Change Stripe Pattern Pant, $89 Intermix

Add some sunshine to your wardrobe for summer. Whether it's buttercup, lemon or mellow yellow this sunny color adds a splash to your clothes and guarantees a smile. Studies show that yellow boosts your mood and makes you seem more approachable. A dose of this look will brighten up your look, not take it over.

 A few tips:

Get the perfect pairing. Silver extras will neutralize the brightness. Want to go bold? Warm gold add-ons enhance it.

Try color combos. This ssahde looks classic with navy and white, but if you're the life of the party pair with turquoise or other citrus hues. Avodi black - it screams bumblebee!

Pick the perfect beauty look. Minimal makeup won't clash with your clothes, but if you have pale skin, wear a bright lipstick or bronzer so you don't look washed out. 

My latest article as contributing editor of Closer Weekly about adding yellow in your wardrobe.

More sunshine for your wardrobe:

Day to evening versatility in a ray of sunshine.

Gatsby-esque yellow linen sweater dress, $148 Max Studio

A dress that's fit for every fete.

Stretch Silk Georgette Side Cape Dress, $348 Max Studio

Comfy Chic

Band of Outsiders Washed Silk Colorblock Shirt Dress, Oxygen Boutique

Amp your style right up to eleven in this flowing, beachy yellow maxi dress.

Anna & Boy Maxi Dress, (on sale) $224 Matches Fashion

Wear a floral pattern.

Yellow V-Neck Silk Floral Dress, $35 She Inside

Yellow Long Sleeve Dipped Hem Blouse, (on sale) $15 She Inside

Magaschoni Orange and Yellow Striped Colorblock Cashmere Cropped Cardigan, $268 Bluefly

Stepping Out

Isola Aira Blush/Mellow Yellow Pumps, $47 6PM

It's officially shorts weather! There are shorts styles for every occasion from work wear to date night. Time to step beyond the basic t-shirt and cut-offs and embrace the newest way to wear shorts. From shorts suits for the office that bridge the gap between power meetings and casual Fridays to embellished shorts that replace your LBD for cocktail parties to your denim done better for weekends. 

 

These are a few looks I recently styled. Get a similar look with my additional picks below.

 

Get The Look

The POWER Shorts Suit

Catherine Catherine Malandrino 'Phoenix' Jacket, $138 Nordstrom

Catherine Catherine Malandrino 'Taylor' Shorts, $88 Nordstrom

Vince Camuto Sleeveless Top, $69 Bloomingdale's

Seychelles 'Thyme' Wedge, $95 Piperlime

Splurge: Gucci Soho Leather Shoulder Bag, $1,490 Gucci

 

Embellished Shorts For Parties & Date Night

Boohoo Colette All Over Beaded Shorts, $45 Boohoo

Daniel Rainn Silk Easy Tank, $69 Piperlime

Tinely Road Pleated Cami, $54 Piperlime

Mixed Metal Gladiator High Heels, $275 J. Crew

Diane Von Fusternberg Envelope Faceted Stud clutch, $265 Bloomingdale's

 

Weekends Made Better In Denim

Paige Denim 'Jackson' Long Sleeve Denim Romper, $239 Nordstrom

Crystal Mobile Necklace, $145 J. Crew

Perforated Leather Belt, $55 J. Crew

Stuart Weitzman Platform Espadrille Wedge Sandals, $385 Bloomingdale's 

Looking for a little country western flair or bohemian style addition to your wardrobe?

From jean shorts to breezy dresses in lace or patterns, you can add some cowboy boots or layer a few necklaces and you're ready for multiple music festivals this summer... or just going out with friends. I styled these looks for the famous country music festival - Stagecoach - that happens in California the weekend after Coachella, but you can work these outfits all summer long.

 

Floral Maxi Dress by Free People

Jean Jacket by RL Denim & Supply

Boots by RL Denim & Supply

Dress by Free People

Jewelry by Macy's

Boots by RL Denim & Supply

Camouflage Jacket by RL Denim & Supply

Crochet Top by RL Denim & Supply

Jewelry from Macy's

Jean Shorts by Free People

Lace Top by Free People

Jeans by RL Denim & Supply

Sandals by RL Denim & Supply

Lace Dress by Free People

Jewelry from Macy's

Cowboy Boots by Rampage

Shirt by RL Denim & Supply

Shorts by Free People

Boots by RL Denim & Supply

 

Denim Jacket by RL Denim & Supply

Dress by Zooey Dechanel for Tommy Hilfiger

I've always been a big fan of denim shirts. If you walked into my closet you'd see a grouping of at least eight denim shirts from light to dark wash, button-front to henley and even an ASOS shirt with a long tie front for a denim take on being super feminine.  I was already wearing the mix of denims before it came back as a trend two years ago. I don't look like I should be working part-time on a cattle ranch, instead I mix my denim shirts with color blocked A-line skirts, black skinny jeans and patterned pencil skirts. I'm such a fan that I try to make converts of every client and have them add just one good fitted denim shirt to their wardrobe. I believe there are multiple ways to wear them when you strike that perfect combination of feminine and strong. Just look for fabrics that aren't thick so they're easy to tuck into whatever you choose to pair it with.

A few of my favorite denim shirts range from medium wash to dark rinse and fit the body well.

ASOS Denim Shirt in Dark Wash, $47 ASOS

Banana Republic Dark Denim Shirt, $80 Banana Republic

Gap 1969 Floral Denim Shirt, $60 Gap

DONDUP Denim shirts, $136 YOOX

 

Banana Republic Denim Shirt, Medium Wash, $80 Banana Republic

 

Time to dress to impress in the four latest styles that are a must for your spring wardrobe. I love dresses! When you're having one of those "what do I wear?" moments, choose a dress. Dresses are so simple to figure out in your wardrobe and barely require a thought,  just slip one on and add heels or sandals. 

Midi Dress with Nipped Waist

     

ASOS Midi Dress In Animal Print, $35 ASOS

ASOS Skater Dress In Check Print, $105 ASOS

Hitting just past the knee the midi dress is sweet and demure. Look for a style that defines the waist and for this season a print means the need for fewer accessories.

Wrap Dress

     

Gemma Chevron Print Wrap Dress, $90 Banana Republic

Diane von Furstenberg Wrap Dress - Faith Silk, $207 Bloomingdale's

Another waist defining style with a flattering v-neck is the wrap style. 

Maxi Dress

     

Michael Stars Exclusive Stripe Halter Maxi Dress, $97 Piperlime

Diane Von Furstenberg Long Two-tone Patterned Maxi Dress, $311 Yoox

Long, flowy and comfortable, the maxi dress can be weekend wear or party wear.

Swing Dress

     

ASOS Swing Dress With Floral Border Print, $42 ASOS

Haute Hippie Sleeveless Silk Tuck Dress With Lace Back in Buff, $465 Piperlime

The swing dress can easily transition between totally casual with flip-flops to a cocktail party when you add heels. For the buff color dress from Haute Hippie add a colorful necklace or cuff bracelet.

I thought it time to share a few of the companies I've come in contact with that are doing good in the world. I wish more time were spent sharing their stories. So here are four of the many I admire.

Boll and Branch

     Missy and Scott Tannen were perplexed when shopping for sheets last year. They couldn't figure out between thread count and price which was the best brand or product to buy. Been there, done that.  But they decided to start their own sheet company and not just any sheet company; one with a mission. The Tannens describe their new line as "linens with a mission": 300-thread-count sheets and cable-knit throws made exclusively from Global Organic Textile Standard-certified organic cotton from fair-trade farms and factories in India. Boll & Branch uses only low-impact, fiber-reactive dyes rather than pigment dyes because they do not contain any known toxins or heavy metals and are considered eco-friendly pigments.

Their sheets are crafted by adults who are paid a fair wage in above-standard work conditions that keep everyone's health and safety in mind. Their products are made ethically by workers who are treated well and are working by choice. Their cotton is 100% GOTS-certified organic which means less impact on the environment, less water used in production, and guaranteed to be safe. Plus, Boll & Branch donates a portion of every sale they make to Not For Sale, which fights modern-day slavery around the world. So these are the sheets I've chosen recently for a good night's sleep.

Karama Gifts

Ali Ly used to watch me on Movie & a Makeover and became a fan so when she moved to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, a growing city in East Africa three years ago and started working with the founder of a nonprofit business called Karama how could I not become of fan of hers. Karama means an "intrinsic gift, needed to be given" in Swahili, and "dignity" in Arabic. Karama was born originally to provide women with skills, jobs with which to use those skills, and a marketplace that would keep African artisans' businesses going, while sharing their stories of social, spiritual, and financial freedom with American customers. Since those humble beginnings, they have grown to sharing the stories of over 500 artisans and their families. I've picked a few of my favorites from the Karama Gifts collection as much for the product as the story behind it. 
 
Teardrop necklace

This teardrop necklace is made by a partner group in the Entoto Mountainside, just outside of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Started by a local church group, this project employs men and women who are HIV-positive. It all began when HIV-infected men and women heard of "healing waters" emerging from the mountains, and so they followed paths up the mountains to wait for this water. These men and women left jobs and homes, and thus started begging and even selling their bodies in order to make a living while waiting for healing to come. As the local church watched, they devised a plan to create a jewelry training program for these men and women to give them employment, and bring them away from the lure of these healing waters, which left them still sick with HIV. Now, Entoto Beth, Karama's partner, employs hundreds of men and women who create jewelry out of coffee beans and recycled artillery and other recycled metals.
 
Journal (kitenge)
 
Neema Crafts, found in the town of Iringa, Tanzania, employs hundreds of men and women, most of them having physical disabilities, and many whom are deaf.  In a society where physical disabilities and deafness are still considered "unacceptable" and render a person "useless," men and women with these difficulties are often abused, abandoned, and neglected. Ali tells me that as you walk through the doors into the Neema center, an incredible spirit of love and acceptance is experienced. The Kitenge journals are measured and cut from Tanzanian fabric (kitenge) by men and women going through training at Neema crafts.
 
Novica
Novica.com (part owned by National Geographic) is an online, fair-trade market place based in Los Angeles. At any given time, NOVICA features more than 30,000 limited edition and one-of-a-kind handmade works of art, ranging from artisan-crafted jewelry to home decor. Launched in 1999, to date NOVICA has helped change the lives of 75,000 people in developing nations, including artisans and their dependents, uniquely helping each artisan earn personal recognition and real-world prices for their work. 
Couldn't resist this incredible photograph of the Melasti Ceremony in Bali. According to Hindu traditions in Indonesia, the Melasti ceremony serves to purify Bhuana Alit (small world) and Bhuana Agung (universe) during the Balinese New Year. 
 
One Hope Wine
 
Their motto - Indulge. Do Good. #WineNot
I've written about them before and even shared their story on TV, but in case you haven't heard, One Hope Wine funds multiple causes with half of their profits. Yup, 50% of sales from their wines go to fund organizations working to find forever homes for pets, fight breast cancer, end childhood hunger, support our troops, help children with autism and more. So whether you like a pinot or a merlot, they have good taste in helping others.
 
     
Do you LOVE your pets like I do? So do they. That’s why ONEHOPE’s Pinot Noir helps animals across the country to find their forever home. Inside this box you’ll find a treat for you (the wine!) and some treats that your furry friend will love. Pinot for Paws, $49 includes a bottle of pinot noir, dog treats, rawhide, rope toy and a $10 gift card.
What’s better than a glass of wine? A glass of wine and a cookie! Enjoy Cookies & Corks’ gourmet cookies - specifically paired to complement our ONEHOPE Cabernet Sauvignon that helps provide ABA behavioral therapy for a child with Autism. Cookies & Cab, $49 includes cabernet sauvignon, a jar of cookies and a $10 gift card.
 
 
 
 

 

Prom season is upon us! Dresses, hair and makeup, heels and the limo are on the agenda.

I attended two proms and didn't learn my lesson from one year to the next that I should have foregone the strapless. I didn't have the boobs or the right bra to hold up the dresses. Thankfully, no camera phones to capture my nip slip on the dance floor. Back then you wore Jessica McClintock, but now while wearing a poufy dress may be the dream for some girls a little black dress, faux Herve Leger sheath or even a sequin top and pencil skirt work just as well.

 For my first prom, I lay on my bedroom floor under a sun lamp trying to get a tan and for the second I visited a tanning bed. I know, I know, tanning beds and sun lamps are evil, but I was a teen desperate for a sunny glow. Neither worked. I used too much Sun-In on my hair and was left with an orangey tint rather than the bottle's promise of golden blonde tresses and I used hair spray like an addict. And as I look back I must admit, my parents had to have been cool or foolish since I took the SAT's the morning after attending my first prom as a junior. Perhaps they felt safe knowing I could always re-take them. After nodding off during the first test, that's exactly what I did a few months later for a higher score.

If I were to time travel back to my high school prom, I would make different dress and hairstyle choices, but most importantly, I'd have the confidence I possess now which ultimately makes all the difference. 

 

Dresses featured: Speechless, City Triangles, and B. Smart from JC Penney and Kohl's, and LittleBorrowedDress.comThe hair and makeup were provided by the amazing talent at The Private Room in Beverly Hills.

As a Luminary Circle member of Step Up, each year I help some of the teens we mentor get ready for their prom. This year, I helped Maria and Lesley from Gertz-Ressler High School and gave them a chance to show off their looks on Fox's Good Day LA. Step Up is a nonprofit organization that mentors high school girls from under-resourced communities to empower them to become confident, college-bound and career-focused. For four straight years, 100% of Step Up seniors have graduated high school & been accepted to college. Yeah, it's awesome! Visit SUWN.org and meet other cool women in the organization and join our awesomeness. 

Here are choices I'd make today for prom:

It's sweet and I could guarantee it would stay in place. A-Line Princess Sweetheart Floor-Length Floral Gown, $245 Lightinthebox

    

Jacqueline Dress by Coren Moore, $80 BHLDN

Unique Vintage Garden State Dress, $102 Zappos

    

Aidan Mattox Dress - Double V Neck Sequin, $365 Bloomingdale's

Adrianna Papell Beaded Chiffon Blouson Dress, $355 Nordstrom

Dalia MacPhee yellow lace dress, Neiman Marcus

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When a blazer just won't do, you look for other options. You know what I'm talking about. Don't get me wrong, I love a good structured blazer. Not one that looks ready for Wall Street, but a contemporary style that fits well and works with jeans or slim pants and heels. Sometimes, though, you need a boost to your look with a jacket that when worn with just about anything in your wardrobe makes the overall outfit stand out.

Welcome to the jackets that will become your new style staples for the season. They're the cool finishing pieces that will take the place of your traditional blazer and make your t-shirt and jeans, oh so much hipper.

Get a mix of prints in a thin scarf style bomber jacket.

Clover Canyon Twist Scarf Jacket, $385 Piperlime

A chic embossed jacket that is perfect for layering over a t-shirt or a dress.

Rhyme Los Angeles Nila Embossed Jacket, $55 Piperlime

I love stripes and I love this sale price too!

Diane von Furstenberg Jacket - Esther Stripe, on sale $251.16 Bloomingdale's

This pairs the cape with the blazer.

Champagne Taste Cape Blazer, $58 Nasty Gal

It's ready to be worn for the presentation or to the movies.

Diane von Furstenberg Jacket - Laya Ladder Tweed, on sale $330 Bloomingdale's

 

 

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