Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Olivia Palermo's Ways To Wear a White Shirt

How to Style a White Shirt
Inspired by Olivia Palermo

A classic white shirt is one of the most timeless and versatile additions to your wardrobe. You can dress it up or down. Wear it under a pants suit to the office, with skinny jeans for a weekend trip or pair it with a chic midi skirt for a formal event. When seeking outfit ideas to style a white shirt, there is no one better to turn to than Olivia Palermo. This savvy style icon has displayed many unique and attractive ways to wear this closet essential. I have recreated 9 different ways to wear a white shirt, inspired by the magnificent closet of Olivia Palermo.

Look 1 - The Burgundy Coat
 Classic white formal shirt $64 Topshop. Burgundy double-breasted oversized coat $159 at Red and berry colour-block heels by Gather 2, $110 at Topshop. Maroon and pink colour-block mock croc bag by Loeffler Randal, $395 at Saks Fifth Avenue. Regular slim-fit distressed denim jeans, $30 at H&M

Look 2 - The Quilted Jacket
Black quilted bomber jacket $60 at H&M. High-low hem white shirt, $35 at H&M. Peggie Sunglasses (as worn by Olivia) $70 at Distressed Arizona denim jeans, $35 at Camouflage printed 'Carrie 2' heels, $70 by Guess.

Look 3 - The Navy Shift Dress
Navy blue cap-sleeved shift dress with braided tan belt, $35 at Mango. White shirt $10, H&M. Burgundy, black & gold envelope clutch £29 at Black & white printed ankle-strap sandals $59 by Chinese Laundry at

Look 4 - The Sequined Blazer
Flowy White Shirt, £30 at Mango. Silver sequined blazer $170 by Helene Berman at Slim-fit uptown denim jeans £40 Mango. Teal crossbody 'Selma' bag by Michael Kors $189 at Floral printed 'Polly' heels £32 at ASOS

Look 5 - The Statement Red Sandal
 Collarless white Vila shirt, £38 at House of Skinny low-rise jeans, $20 at H&M. Strappy red stiletto sandals, $110 by Adrienne Maloof at

Look 6 - The Leather Skirt
Stretch white shirt, $10 at H&M. Leather pencil skirt $99 at H&M. Black leather City Bag, $189 at Furry black belted gilet, £60 at Black platform 'Piccadilly' pumps £55 at ASOS 

Look 7 - Shorts & Neutrals
White shirt $38 at H&M. Beige linen shorts $138 by 3.1 Phillip Lim. Metallic gold snakeskin bag £13 New Gold metal belt £30 at ASOS. Gold cuffs $98 Nude & gold strappy sandals, $50 Shoe Republic at

Look 8 - The Little Black Dress
 Classic white shirt $64 at Topshop. Black rib box-pleat strapless dress, $90 at River Jules Smith Gold 'Viva Glam' cuff, $98 at Black pointed court shoes, $65 at Topshop. Ruby, purple and gold rhinestone necklace, $120 at Topshop. Black and gold studded mini clutch bag, $80 at Topshop.

Look 9 - Pink, Leopard & Lime
White shirt $64 Topshop. Leopard print skater skirt £12 Multi-coloured scarf $30 River Island. Lime green clutch bag by Hunting Season $395 at Intermix Online. Pink pea coat $308 JCrew. Camouflage print heels $70, Guess at

Which of Olivia's looks do you prefer?
How would you style a white shirt?

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Savvy Girl's Guide to Frizz-Free Hair

The Savvy Girl's Guide To...
Fighting Frizz & Flyaway Hair

We all have those those days when your hair looks like you have been plugged in an electrical socket. Not a problem if you're going for that tumbleweed type of look, but there's a fine line between sultry out-of-bed hair and looking like a you're harboring a bird's nest in your tresses. Weather conditions are partly to blame for our electrifying hairstyles - Dry hot air leads to flyways, whilst humidity creates unwelcome frizz. However, over-processing, heat styling, bleaching and colouring also cause our hair to behave badly. These are my tried and tested frizz-busting tips for glossy locks.

Frizzified hair at Marc by Marc Jacobs FW13 

Tips to Get Rid of Frizz & Flyaway's

*Get your hair trimmed every six-eight weeks to get rid of dry split ends that create frizz.

* Resist the temptation to wash your hair every single day. Those natural oils from your scalp assist in coating the hair that's in need of moisture.

Sleek straight not-a-hair out of place at Rebecca Minkoff FW13

*Try a cold rinse after you wash and condition to seal off and smoothen down hair cuticles.

*Avoid rubbing your hair with a towel as this creates friction which leads to frizz. A microfiber towel is a better option, or if you don't have one, try patting and wrapping your hair dry with a soft, clean t-shirt.

These are some good serums, sprays and defrizzers to try out. Nope, that's not mascara, it's John Frieda's brilliant full repair touch-up frizz tamer. Perfect for on-the go and it fits into your handbag.

*A moisture-rich conditioner is the best remedy for dry hair. Apply to the mid-lengths and ends of your hair, then leave on for about 2 minutes after shampooing. Rinse off thereafter.

*Apply hair serums while your hair is still wet, as this is when your hair is easier to manage.

*When picking out a conditioner or hair serum at your beauty store, look for one that has added proteins and silicone. The ones that work best will usually be clear and in liquid form.

*Sleeping on a satin pillowcase will reduce friction and hair breakage.

*If you have to use one - a flat iron will instantly smoothen down hair cuticles and lock in shine, but don't forget to use a heat-protecting product beforehand.

*Try an apple cider vinegar rinse for a more natural approach. Pour half a cup over your mane after shampooing, leave in for a minute, then rinse out with cold water. Condition as usual.

*Onto more kitchen essentials, whip up an egg with a tablespoon of water or almond oil, the yolks help to make a protein-enriched hair mask. Apply half an hour before washing your hair. 

*Mash up an avocado with some olive oil for a nourishing, easy, at-home hair treatment.

*We often turn to serums when trying to tame flyaways, but this usually sits in a film on top of your hair, whilst oils are absorbed into your hair. Try coconut oil (yes, it does smells quite coconutty) or use olive oil instead. Coconut oil usually solidifies, so hold the bottle under warm water until it dissolves into a liquid. Massage into hair & scalp, wear a shower cap and leave on for an hour or overnight. Wash out with a good clarifying shampoo & conditioner.

*Another good defrizzing trick is to try kiddies detangling spray...and on the plus side your hair will smell of strawberries.

*Swap your current hairdryer for an ionic one, as it adds ions to your hair and neutralizes the electric charge that causes static hair.

*When blow-drying wavy and curly hair, use the diffuser (it's that alien shower-head-like attachment that came with your hairdryer).

*Don't point the end of the blow dryer upwards at your hair from the bottom, as this will split hair follicles and amplify the frizz factor. Rather angle the nozzle down in the direction of the hair shaft. Set with a blast of cold hair to close off the hair cuticles.

*Run a dryer sheet (it can be found in the detergent section of your grocery store) across your hair to remove static.

*Use brushes made of rubber or wood with natural bristles. Plastic brushes produce static.

*Use a wide-tooth comb on damp or wet hair, tugging at knots with a brush leads to breakage.

*Buy a spare toothbrush and spray a little hairspray on it to comb down those pesky flyaways at your hairline. Ensure that your hairspray is alcohol free, as this ingredient dries hair out.

Blake Lively's unruly flyaway's are perfectly primped for a red carpet appearance.

*This has happened to me countless of times -  After trying on clothes in a store changing room, my hair becomes a hyper-static mess. Before leaving, take some hand cream and rub a little between your palms, then lightly go over your hair with your hands.

*And if all these ideas fail (and I hope they don't)...grab a wide-brimmed hat, silk scarf or hoodie to hide those gravity-defying flyaways.

What is your best advice for fighting frizz & flyaways?

Monday, October 28, 2013

Lublu Fall/Winter 2013

This week we take a first-class trip to Russia, where talented heiress-turned-designer Kira Plastinina presents an engaging Fall/Winter 2013 collection for her contemporary fashion line called Lublu. Kira's company has been rated by Forbes Magazine as amongst the top ten fashion institutes in Russia. Now that's an impressive achievement for this 21-year-old designer, who by the way, opened her first clothing store at just 14.

The Lublu girl, although youthful, depicts herself in the most sophisticated manner with classic silhouettes reinvented by dynamic digital prints and sumptuous fabrics. Rich velvets and imperial printed jacquard dresses impart a baroque theme, with black floral crowns lending to the mystique. Femininity is coyly conveyed by beautiful floral lace and silk-lined dresses with A-line skirts and caped coats. For your laid-back weekend look, there are metalized knit sweaters, leather pencil skirts, moto jackets and square-cut paneled pants.

I like how by throwing any of these pieces on, they instantly create that high-glamour look without any fuss or need for accessories. The Lublu range is sold online and in select department stores around the world. 

This is a view into the Lublu Fall/Winter Collection 2013.

Set 1

Set 2

Set 3

Set 4

Set 5

Set 6

Set 7

Set 8

Which of these Lublu looks appeal to your Winter palate?

*All images belong to

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Looks of the Week - 26/10/13

The weekly round-up of celebrity style, on and off the red carpet.

Belles Du Jour

Emmy Rossum was beautifully feminine in a multi-hued floral embroidered tulle dress by Oscar de la Renta, signed off with an emerald green Christian Louboutin clutch & black pumps.
Michelle Jenner caught my fancy is this impressive look by Christian Dior, featuring a printed bustier bodice and black skirt that is accented by a pastel pink sash. A white clutch and Jimmy Choo pumps complete her outfit.
Paz Vega smoldered in a lacy black Fitriani mini dress, styled with dusky pink clutch and Christian Louboutin heels.
Alexis Bledel kept things girly in an endearing rose shaded dress by BCBG Max Azria with black halter straps and belt, and a ruffled cut-out neckline.

White Lights

Caitlin FitzGerald looked lovely in an art-deco inspired embellished mini dress by Tadashi Shoji, polished up by Pedro Garcia shoes and a Swarovski clutch.
Kate Bosworth wears a modernistic ensemble which she helped create in line with Topshop. It features a slouchy white sweater & asymmetrical silver foiled skirt with ankle boots.
Ashley Madekwe never sets a style foot out of place, seen in a white pin-striped dress with open back by Thakoon, along with Saint Laurent sandals.

Streets Ahead
Rosie Huntington-Whiteley kitted up in a dashing black Balmain quilted biker jacket, worn over a white tee, black jeans, stiletto ankle boots and a Givenchy tote.
Mollie King slung her sienna brown caped coat over a white shirt with tie-up scarf and leather pencil skirt. A black doctors bag and pumps finalize her sophisticated look.
Rachel Bilson is dressed with flair in a caramel midi skirt and white tank, accessorized by a white Chanel bag, black belt, tortoise-shell sunnies and ankle boots.
Jessica Alba exemplifies chic simplicity in a white Bella Dahl shirt, worn with distressed denim jeans, imposing Christian Louboutin gladiator sandals and a Louis Vuitton bag.

Seeing Red

Reese Witherspoon went the minimalist route in a crimson strapless sheath by Calvin Klein.
Zendaya Coleman takes a stride in this well-fitted ruby Aquilano Rimondi peplum dress with pencil skirt, along with black Christian Louboutin pumps.
Emmy Rossum dressed up in a dazzling scarlet embellished Elie Saab number with cross-halter straps and matching Christian Louboutin heels.
Kate Beckinsale was utterly elegant in a slick vermilion red Donna Karan wrap dress with enviable black and gold Casadei sandals.

Gown & Out

Spanish personality Elena Ballesteros looked pretty in a dainty white Santos Costura dress with lace bodice and pleated chiffon skirt. 
Anja Rubik exuded grace in an exquisite sheer grey lace embroidered Elie Saab caped gown.
If you got it, flaunt it, and Spanish beauty Ariadne Artiles certainly does in this black Vicky Martín Berrocal gown with lace long-sleeved bodice and thigh-high slitted skirt.
Dakota Fanning played it sweet in a a pleated flowing petal pink Vionnet dress.

Who is your favourite 'Look of the Week'?

Friday, October 25, 2013

Friday Frills

You are strong...
when you take your grief and teach it to smile.
You are brave...
when you overcome your fear and help others to do the same.
You are happy...
when you see something simple like a flower and are thankful for the blessing
You are loving...
when your own pain does not blind you to the pain of others.

You are wise...
when you know the limits of your wisdom.
You are true... 

when you admit there are times when you fool yourself.
You are alive...
when tomorrow's hope means more to you than yesterday's mistake.
You are growing...
when you know what you are, but not what you will become.

You are free...
when you are in control of yourself and do not wish to control others.
You are honourable...
when you find that your honour is to honour others.
You are generous... 
when you can take as sweetly as you can give.
You are humble...
when you do not know just how humble you are.

You are thoughtful...
when you see me just as I am and treat me just as you are.
You are merciful...
when you forgive in others the faults you condemn in yourself.
You are beautiful...
when you don’t need a mirror to tell you so.
You are rich...
when you never need more than what you have. 

You are you...
When you are at peace with who you are not.

*This is one of my favourite quotes.  
Author unknown. Image via Pinterest.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Prom and Party Dress Ideas 2013

This post comes as a special request from a lovely reader looking for some prom dress inspiration. Here in Safrica, we call this end-of-school event a 'matric farewell' and it is known as being the biggest and most important day in a girl's life, other than her wedding, that is. 

Whist trying to find the best source of beautiful and tasteful prom dresses, I stumbled upon far too many tacky showgirl-type looks with more glitz than the Vegas strip and rainbow ruffled nightmares. Thankfully, my taffeta torment ended when I uncovered the elegance and glamour of Alyce Paris. The French-American based brand are favored for their exquisite and refined evening wear that will turn any Cinderella into a Prom Queen.

If you have passed that prom stage, they also create looks for weddings, bridesmaids dresses, engagements, parties, pageants and any other formal occasion. The prices range from $250 for a short party dress, to around $350 for a simple chiffon evening gown and $500 - $1500 for a look that's heavily embellished. See more of these beguiling styles at the Alyce Paris website. P.S This post is not sponsored, I just happen to really like these dresses ;)

Be Enchanting
Pick a pastel shaded gown in floaty chiffon with silver crystal embellishings to bring out your feminine side. Enchant in lilac, rose, coral and peach sweetheart strapless dresses.

There are also shorter flirtier options to dazzle your date with.

Be Pretty in Pink
Keep in trend with a range of pastel pink empire waist dresses in high-low & maxi lengths.

Be Enigmatic
There is nothing more classic than a well constructed black dress that flatters any shape.

Your end-of-year party look dilemma is solved with elegant cocktail dresses that are accented with ornate gold embroidery and sheer detailing.

Be Dynamic
If you're out to make a bold style statement, there's no better way to say it than in red. Lace and tulle fabricate these stunning curve-hugging mermaid dresses.

For a more youthful and less formal approach to this power colour, a sleek chiffon frock with minimal beading is bound to do the trick.

Be Bright
Set the dance floor alight in vivid hues like fuchsia, chartreuse, cobalt and yellow.

Be Serene
A soothing blue oceanic mood is translated no better than by these sweeping circle-cut skirts.

 Be Sparkly
Outshine the others in an extravagantly sequined gown that will ensure you are the 'light' and sparkle of the party. I mostly see of these types of dresses at weddings I've attended here.

Be Golden
Get the Midas touch in a scintillating gold gown that ranges from demure to 24 carat couture.

Which Alyce Paris dress would you pick for a formal occasion?

*Just a note: My next post will be on Friday.

Monday, October 21, 2013

The Empress' New Clothes by Vogue Thailand

Taking a whole new fashionable spin on an age-old fairy tale, Vogue Thailand places top model Liu Wen in a range of imperial outfits fit for an empress. Unique textures clash with strong geometric shapes and rich jewel tones, in an avant garde editorial that tells the story of a warrior princess who much prefers haute couture to a suit of armor. 

Liu's fashion dynasty is governed in this exquisite look from Giambattista Valli's Fall 2013 Couture line. It features a diaphanous lavender mermaid skirt, black bodysuit and olive green cropped tunic with tiny silk fuchsia blooms sprouting out on the shoulders.

Geometric-cut shreds of fabric are zig-zagged together in this intricately crafted Chanel Couture dress that Liu wears on the cover of Vogue Thailand's October 2013 issue. Her dramatic winged eye-liner invokes a sense of power that commands this theatrical shoot.

The Chinese beauty models another Chanel Couture look in an Asian-inspired robe silhouette with broad shoulders, delicately tiled with miniature mosaics

Liu takes fight in an extravagantly feathered Jean Paul Gaultier coat, which was cleverly styled and photographed to look like actual wings.

Only Donatella Versace could take a cozy knit and turn it into something sexy. A cobalt blue fleecy high-neck dress is (barely) held together by scads of hooks and eyes. What I don't get - why this wooly dress is air-conditioned by cut-outs. Do you wear this when it's hot, or cold?

Christian Lacroix presents lavish costumery in a blast of fiery red and royal blue for Schiaparelli. A voluminous pair of embroidered harem pants and a satin cropped cape coat bring the legend of Mulan to life. 

The 25-year-old model wears a sheer and sequin paneled jumpsuit by Armani Privé.

Jean Paul Gaultier was not kidding when he made pockets to store your life in.
Exaggerated V-shaped pants are offset (and confused) by a quilted tan jacket. If we see these pants hitting the high street in the near future, call 911. Because it's a crime.

Stripes are layered in different forms by Christian Dior's Raf Simons, in a flair red and blue hooded coat with contrasting pin-striped sleeves and see-through navy blue skirt.

You just can't compare the radiant beauty of Liu to this pallid mannequin. Whereas this stunning candy-stripe gown looked lifeless at the Schiaparelli presentation, Liu injects fervent emotion and glamour into it. This monumental duchess satin rose pink and chocolate striped dress features a giant plaid bow and fanned out fabric flower on the bodice.

What are your thoughts on 'Empress Liu's New Clothes' in Vogue Thailand?