This is sort of a weird question, but a fun one: If you could splurge on a few pieces this summer, what would they be?
As you might imagine, I do a lot of window shopping. So I have a folder on my computer of pieces that I’m waiting to go on sale or that I’m looking for on eBay, Gilt, etc. Here are a few of the pieces that caught my eye recently, and (since this is a blog for women with realistic budgets) a few less-expensive equivalents.
This Rachel Zoe Holloway Jacket ($395) is phenomenal. I love the ivory color for summer or winter and the classic shape. I also found this Club Monaco jacket for $249 and this Tommy Hilfiger ivory tweed jacket for $72. Like things a bit sleeker? Try this Ann Taylor jacket.
Hugo Boss is one of my favorite brands, right up there with Burberry. So this Hugo Boss Dipera Dress ($356) with sleeves in a bold color is right up my alley. For an under-$100 equivalent, try this jersey dress with a side-buckle from Gilt.
The Annabel Ingalls Isabella Tote ($415) has a sleek simplicity that’s just eye catching. But these leather totes are so popular right now, it would be a little silly to spend this sort of money on one. Try this Zara shopper or this Old Navy tote instead.
Shut the front door. These Loeffler Randall Calf-Hair Polka Dot Pumps ($350) are just sublime. I love the calf-hair and the cool pattern. Closest thing I found? These Corso Como Del pumps in white with black dots.
I love fashion jewelry, but it’s all so cheaply made now. Can you recommend a good brand? The gold tone has worn off of half my necklaces and it makes me feel like I’m waisting my money.
Love the blog! Jensen
Like you, I’m disappointed in the quality of most of the affordable jewelry for sale. You buy it, and then four weeks later, it’s no longer shiny. How lovely. Over the past three years, I’ve found two brands whose pieces consistently outperform the rest: Stella & Dot and Elizabeth and James.
My favorite pieces from Stella & Dot are this long pendant necklace and these two bangles (a spiky one and a chain one). From Elizabeth and James, I purchased their Windrose ring. These pieces are worn with such regularity that it is amazing how new they look. If that’s not a ringing endorsement, I don’t know what is.
If you’re looking for something less expensive, the brand I’ve had the best luck with is LOFT. Have an inexpensive piece that you love? Spray it with Krylon clear coat to keep it from tarnishing and losing its tone.
What is your take on a-line skirts? Most of the skirts you feature on your blog are pencil shaped, so I was wondering whether you don’t like a-lines. I really prefer them and I’d like to find some new ones that don’t cost much, but I never see any posted on your blog so I thought I would ask whether I should even be wearing them.
The reason you don’t see many a-line skirts on CHS is simply that I don’t think they’re very flattering on me, so I don’t go searching for them. That doesn’t mean that there’s anything wrong with them. If they’re what you like and you think they’re flattering on your body, then that is what you should wear. Now, let’s see if we can’t find a few for you to try.
Many of the a-line skirts that you see on the market this season are pleated. On the left, we have a skirt with knife pleats and on the right, we have a wider, box pleat skirt. Different styles will be flattering on some, but not on others. If you prefer to avoid pleats altogether, you can choose a skirt like the one in the middle.
Fuller skirts also seem to be more popular this year. I found this stretch cotton skirt from Halogen in basic black, and this Topshop skirt that has a bell shape to it. If you prefer the simpler skirt and have a bit more to spend on a staple piece, try this Ming Wang skirt from Nordstrom.