Two Ways: Aubergine Dress

Nov 1, 2012

Dress: Aubergine Ottoman Dress (Dorothy Perkins, $39)

From Left, Ring: Teal Stone Cluster Ring ($45) Bag: Tory Burch Penelope Bag ($565) Sweater: Harper Bobble Knit Cardigan ($370) Belt: Wine gem skinny belt ($11) Shoes: Kate Spade Lori Platform ($328)

From Right, Bag: Onyx French Clutch ($165) Shoes: Via Spiga Nude Pumps ($139) Earrings: Stella and Dot Liz Earrings ($59) Ring: Black Deco Ring ($22) Belt: Metallic Mesh Rhinestone Belt ($8)

Polyvore Set Here.

Editor’s Note: As a result of Hurricane Sandy, some of the tools I use to build these posts are not available.  So they may be a little lackluster until the companies can recover.

For the Office.  This outfit has a vintage feel with a sheath dress and a slouchy cardigan.  I love the tie and the bobble-knit accents.  I also prefer to mix burgundy with beige, brown, navy and grey, instead of black.  Black just looks a bit harsh to me.

The belt is the same shade as the dress and should be worn around the waist, underneath the sweater.  The shoes look wine-colored in the photo, but they are actually dark brown.  If you wanted to wear tights and boots, I would try brown tights with a brown boot.

The accessories are a mix of teal and blue.  If you prefer, you could go with a darker eggplant purple or navy instead.  But I just loved the crisp lines of the Tory Burch bag.

For the hair, I would wear it half up, teased at the crown.  For the makeup, I would choose a lipstick with a light wine tint like this one from Bite Beauty and wear chocolate brown eye liner and taupe shadow.

For a Casual Wedding.  I know what you’re going to say.  “Belle, bare legs in the winter? Are you crazy?”

At the risk of stepping on the third rail, I believe that for cocktail and evening events bare legs are always acceptable.  For work, if you can wear bare legs in the summer, you can wear them in the winter, but I wouldn’t recommend nude shoes.  If they make you uncomfortable, then wear nylons or tights.  But I have never understood why so many women who wear bare legs six/eight months per year, suddenly become so horrified by the prospect of wearing them in the winter.  That thin layer of nylon can’t possibly be keeping your legs THAT warm.

As for the rest of the outfit, I chose a metallic belt, a cool pair of earrings and a deco ring to spice it up.  You could also buy a piece of ribbon the same color as the dress and tie it around the waist.  I’d add a brooch at waist level if I did that.

For the hair, I would wear it in a wavy low side ponytail.  For the makeup, I would wear black liner and charcoal shadow with a dark lip gloss.

Three Ways

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  1. Govvie says:

    Belle – speaking of legs in the winter, I finally picked up a pair of fleece-lined tights. They changed my life. Thanks for the recommendation!

  2. M says:

    “But I have never understood why so many women who wear bare legs six/eight months per year, suddenly become so horrified by the prospect of wearing them in the winter.”

    Because it looks as ridiculous as wearing opaque tights in the middle of July.

  3. BPM says:

    Well, strange as it seems, this thin layer of nylon is what it takes to go from freezing to mildly cold (which is tolerable as I only have to spend 15 min outside for commute).

    I don't wear nylon pantyhose, just nylon knee-high under pants, but they do make a world of difference. Don't know why, though.

  4. Caroline says:

    Nylons or tights do an excellent job of keeping my legs warm! They're actually better than most pants in that regard. I walk a mile to and from work every day, and that would be unbearable with bare legs.

  5. L says:

    No tights/hose in the winter = pale, cold legs. No one wants to see your Casper legs in the dead of Winter. Or maybe that's just me…

  6. Belle says:

    L: I'll give you the pale, but how much warmer are your legs in regular tights?

  7. Kelly says:

    Adding a layer (even a thin layer made of nylon) = extra warmth. It's pretty simple.

  8. K says:

    I actually like to double up my tights— I find it makes most of my boots and booties more comfortable and my legs much warmer. Also if you have patterned tights ( black lace for example), you can make them more work apporpiate by wearing them over another opaque tight (slate for example). The look is subtle, but pretty 🙂

  9. G says:

    Belle, would you mind doing a post on how to wear colored tights with which shoes? I know from past posts that the tights should match the shoes and no tights with nude pumps, but a post that goes further to talk about incorporating chocolate brown, navy, gray, etc. would be very helpful!

  10. Caroline says:

    I can't speak for L, but I am soooo much warmer in regular tights! People think I'm crazy when I say they're warmer than trousers, but they absolutely are (unless the trousers are wool or lined with fleece or something). I can't even imagine sitting in my office without tights– I'd have goose bumps all over my legs.

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