Thursday, December 29, 2011

Top 10 Gowns of 2011

10. Emma Stone in Chanel Couture, "The Help" L.A. Premier
9. Michelle Trachtenberg in Marchesa, 2011 School Of American Ballet Winter Ball

 8. Christina Ricci in Zac Posen, The Met Ball

 7. Ashley Green in Donna Karan, The Met Ball

6. Diane Kruger in Calvin Klein, Cannes Film Festival

5. Lea Michele in Oscar de la Renta, SAG Awards

4. Emma Watson in Oscar de la Renta, "Harry Potter" London Premier

3. Rosie Huntington-Whiteley in Naeem Khan, "Transformers" Berlin Premier

2. Fan Bing Bing in Chris BuKewen, Cannes Film Festival

1. Mila Kunis in Elie Saab Couture, Oscars

Coco Birdie

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Designer Profile: The Row

I've been on a bit of a minimalism kick lately, and one of my favorite "minimal" lines is The Row.  I'm not going to tell you about the designers just yet because I want you to look at the garments first.  The line has been around for about four years and prides itself on a clean look- simple lines, stunning fabrics, and a soft fit. referred to it not as "minimal," but as "utterly simple and anonymously chic."  These are pieces that are great on their own or can be easily dressed around.

Here's a look at a bit of their history, starting with last spring:

Pre-fall has been my favorite collection so far.  I love the bias cuts, the furs, and the textural interests in their clothes.  There's quite a bit going on in each piece, yet they are refined and sleek.

The company is also branching out into accessories.  Their AMAZING handbags are launching this fall at Barney's and they have three limited-edition (cashmere!) shoes launching with Toms.

I applaud what they've done with the bags.  Most designers feel the need to smother the bag with their name and branding.  I read an article in Harper's Bazaar about the launch of the collection and the designers said they explicitly stayed away from over-the-top branding.  It helps keep the bags timeless and they go with just about any outfit.  They aren't flashy and pretentious-- just well made and stylish.

So are you ready to find out who is behind this amazing collection...

 Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen.  WHAT?!?!  I know.  The twins became known for their "homeless/bag-lady" look, but have really grown up and grown into a much more sensible style.  I heard they had a collection and I had seen The Row's collections on and loved it.  When I found out the two went together, I had to double check that I was looking at the right line.  From the several articles and interviews I've read since then, it also really sounds like they have a huge part in the designing, which is much more than a majority of the other celebrity lines can say.

In their fall collection you can see a sneak peak of some fall trends- minimalism, furs, and prints.  I'll be posting more on the fall trends soon, so check back!

Coco Birdie

All images from and The Row's Facebook page.

Monday, August 15, 2011

One Print, Four Ways

To continue the theme started in the "One Dress, Four Ways" post, I taken one of fall's most popular prints-- leopard-- and created four distinct looks.  Actually, there are four styles and eight individual looks!  I love me some leopard print and there are many ways you can dress around it.  If you find the print to be intimidating, try it in small doses such has a belt or handbag.  There are several intensities shown here and the looks can easily be translated into winter or spring looks.  J. Crew is offering a lot of goods in a really nice leopard print this fall, so I'm using their pieces as the jumping off point. 

Bright Colors:
Another one of fall's biggest trends is the use of saturated colors.  Designers showed bright colors paired together on the fall runways and in their recently released resort collections.  I think it is easiest and looks the best if the colors are in the same color family (red-orange-yellow, blue-green-purple), and then small amounts of other colors are used in the accessories.  Add a leopard print to the mix and you'll really get a show-stopping look.  These outfits are not for wallflowers!
Outfit 1:

From left to right: Anthropologie Tassau Earrings in Chartreuse, Nine West Devika Pumps in Purple SuedeJ. Crew Leopard Tippi Sweater, and Anthropologie Crimped Crimson Midi

Outfit 2:
From left to right: J. Crew Silk Leopard Print Scarf, Pour La Victoire Irina Heels in Yellow Patent, J. Crew Tippi Sweater in Heather Viridian Green, and J Brand 29" Skinny Jeans in Blue

The gamine look was popularized by 60s starlets like Audrey Hepburn and Mia Farrow, and continues to be popular today.  Demure basics can be taken up a notch with seemingly simple leopard print pieces like a handbag or pair of ballet flats.  If you are nervous about wearing leopard, start here and build up.
Outfit 1:

From left to right: Etienne Aigner Chastity Boots in Black/Banana Bread, Anthropologie Auspicious Posts in Gold, J. Crew Edie Purse in Italian Calf Hair, and Anthropologie Horkelia Shift in Ivory

Outfit 2:
From left to right: Anthropologie Tied & Tabbed Blouse, J. Crew Bi-Stretch Wool Minnie Pants in Black, American Apparel Small Leather Carry-All Pouch in Black, J. Crew Classic Pavé Link Bracelet, and J. Crew Nora Calf Hair Ballet Flats in Pecan

Similar to the gamine look is the minimal style.  Basic and architectural, the minimal outfits are great for beginner leopard wearers.  These looks have more edgy-ness to them than the previous, and they would look great with sleek hair and red lips.
Outfit 1:

From left to right: American Apparel Small Leather Carry-All Pouch in Tan, Anthropologie Overlapping Glow Ring, Anthropologie Layered Column Dress, and J. Crew Pia Calf Hair Pumps

Outfit 2:
From left to right: J. Crew Marlow Tote in Italian Calf Hair, Anthropologie Wrapped Cocoa Heels, J. Crew High Waisted Skinny Jeans in Pitch Black, and Anthropologie Neale Top

Pattern Mix:
Another big fall trend is mixing patterns and leopard print is a great option since it is has neutral colors.  When pattern mixing, try to use similar colors and hues but mix up the scale and color value.  Both of these looks are pretty bold, but you can do smaller scale pattern mixing with your accessories.
Outfit 1:
From left to right: Anthropologie Squared Tote, Anthropologie Lotus Unfolding Heels, J. Crew Perfect Shirt in Leopard, Anthropologie Tie-Around Bracelet, and Anthropologie Acropora Pencil Skirt

Outfit 2:
From left to right: Anthropologie Gadabout Wallet, Kimichi Blue Linen Pumps in Orange, J. Crew Leopard Calf Hair Jacket, and Anthropologie Splashed Palette Dress

Coming up soon will be a post on one of my new favorite lines, The Row, and a post on fall trends.  Until then, try out some leopard print and enjoy the end of summer!

Coco Birdie

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Designer Diffusions

This Fall, two major designers are offering diffusion lines at mass retailers.  First up is Karl Lagerfeld for Impluse, exclusively at Macy's. (click image to enlarge)

This collection is limited edition and will go fast when it is released on August 31.  Prices range from $50-$175 and the pieces will be available at select Macy's stores nationwide and online at  The collection is very true to Lagerfeld's style- the blacks, whites, and grays; the big white collars on dresses, tunics, and tops.  There is a mix of tweeds and pieces that are closer to his design work for Chanel, and rock-n-roll pieces that are clearly diffused from his eponymous collection.  My personal four favorites are the sleeveless black dress with white collar, the black A-line dress with white collar, the pale pink dress, and the leather pants:

Coming September 13 is the launch of Missoni for Target.  After several successful runs with designers like Temperley London, Proenza Schoeler, Lela Rose, and Zac Posen, Target has teamed up with Missoni for an unbelievable collection of goods for women, men, children, and home.  All the looks  feature the signature Missoni stripes and come in great fall colors like teal and raspberry.

For Home: (click images to enlarge)
For Kids:

For Women:



My personal favorites are the black and white zig-zag one piece, the luggage, the glass vase, the cocktail set, and the BIKE.  I really really really want that bike!!

Set your alarms because both limited edition collections will be flying off the shelves as soon as they are released!

Coco Birdie

Saturday, June 25, 2011

One Dress, Four Ways

I've always loved the Lucky Magazine feature "Four Girls, One..." and they've recently re-introduced it to their issues.  They give four different women the same garment and ask they to show off how they would style it.  Its amazing what you can do with one piece.

I've decided to embark on the same task, giving you four different looks using one basic piece.  For this inaugural post, I've chosen the piece every woman owns-- The Little Black Dress.  Specifically, J. Crew's Alisanne Dress in Cotton Taffeta.  Note: the dress comes with a bow on the back, which I would promptly remove because it inhibits layering and gives off a girly vibe you may not want.

I'll tackle four looks here, all centered around the dress.  You can use pretty much any basic black dress for these looks, given it isn't too embellished/ruffled/over-the-top.  A basic black sheath dress works wonders (though can be surprising hard to find).  Look for a fabric that isn't too dressy or too casual, like the cotton taffeta used in this one.  It can easily be dressed up or down.

Look 1: Edgy
From left to right: The Sartorialist, Manadrino, and Alexander McQueen

Inspired by the leather black dresses that filled many of the recent Resort 2012 collections, this look features a buttery soft cropped leather jacket.  To really complete the look, add in rock-n-roll inspired accessories, like these great spiked heels and Eddie Borgo jewelry.  I added a small red clutch for a pop of color.

From top to bottom: Eddie Borgo Cone Studs, American Apparel Small Leather Carry-All Pouch in Red, J. Crew Lambskin Motocross Jacket, Eddie Borgo Bear Trap Ring, and Sam Edelman Lorissa Pumps.

Look 2:  Free-Spirited
From left to right: Anna Sui, Chanel, and J. Crew

The free-spirited look is all in the prints and layers.  I channeled Anna Sui's work, along with Chanel's Pre-Fall Byzantine inspired collection.  If you only shop one place to assemble this look, make it Free People.  The free-spirited outfit is about mixing nature and Native American inspired prints, and pairing it with rough-and-tubble boots and natural accessories.  Don't be afraid to toss a cami over a dress and maybe a slouchy sweater on top of that.
From left to right: Free People Patchwork Scarf Cami in Midnight Combo, Anthropologie Gilded Link Bracelet, Anthropologie Go-Everywhere Tote in Brown, and Free People Anna Boots in Black.

Look 3: Minimal
From left to right: Gucci, Michael Kors, and No. 21

In minimalism, less is more.  Feel free to layer, but make sure the individual pieces are sleek and unfussy.  For this look, I pulled inspiration from Gucci's relaxed white blouse, Michael Kors' architectural accessories, and No. 21's basic cardigan and clutch.

From left to right: Anthropologie Clean Break Cuff, Ella Moss for Piperlime Ellassential Cardigan in Black, Gap Sheer Pocket Shirt in Beach Pebble, Anthropologie Sashay Heels, and American Apparel Medium Leather Carry-All Pouch in Black.

Look 4: Preppy 
From left to right: Chanel, Oscar de la Renta, and DKNY

The preppy look starts with Chanel's classic tweed blazer and is polished off with ladylike pumps, a small chain-strap bag, and the obligatory strand of pearls.  Everything in this look is classic, chic, and has a hint of sweetness.  Oscar de la Renta is always a great source for "Ladies Who Lunch" inspiration, if you want to look into other ways to dress this outfit.

From left to right: J. Crew Platinum Tweed Jacket, J. Crew Multistrand Pearl Necklace, Talbots Suede Almond-Toe Pumps in Black, and Kate Spade Burnside Avenue Lauralee Bag.

To really finish off each look, make sure hair and makeup play the part.  For the edgy look, smokey eyes and messy hair does the trick.  For the free-spirited, berry stained lips and braids.  For the minimal look, a slicked back pony tail and glowing neutral makeup.  For the preppy look, do cat-eyes, soft pink lips, and soft waves.

Coco Birdie

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

How to Wear: White Hot

The Spring 2011 runways were overflowing in white garments and the trend is hot for summer.  Crisp white garments can be interpreted many ways, but the end result is always chic.

One classic all white look is with lace.  White lace can be done all over in a dress or top, or done as appliqué or embroidery accents.  Erdem showed this sweet white frock with lace up shoes and Dolce & Gabbana showed mostly white lace garments in their Spring collection.

To get the look, pair white lace dresses or tops with neutral and sweet accessories.  Dresses look best as a shirtdress or sheath, and white tops look extra summery when paired with white denim.
 From left to right: Anthropologie Sunrise Shirt Dress in White, Anthropologie Pave Posts in Pearl, Anthropologie Giza Tote, and Anthropologie Twine Around Wedges.

From left to right: Banana Republic Embroidery Tie-Waist Halter, Anthropologie Nature-Bound Bangle in Cream, Anthropologie Stitched Bellis Tote, and J. Crew Iris Suede Sandals in Sandstone.

White also looks great when styled minimally with draping or structured details and architectural accessories.  Bill Blass showed an beautifully done draped dress, while The Row and Calvin Klein stuck to a even more minimal look.

To get the look, keep accessories sleek and clean.  That doesn't mean that have to be boring-- some of the best designed pieces aren't over the top.  The pieces should mirror the fluidity or structure of the garment.  For more on minimal dressing, read the Less is More post.
From left to right: BCBG Reed One-Shoulder Cocktail Dress, Anthropologie Creme Brulee Posts in Gold, Anya Hindmarch Marano Mirror-Effect Leather Clutch, and Elsa Peretti for Tiffany & Co. Bone Cuff.

From left to right: American Apparel Spaghetti Strap Tank Dress in White, Eileen Fisher Cascading Long Vest, Anthropologie Prospector's Prize Dangles in Silver, and Anthropologie Gilded Age Gladiators.

From left to right: Zara Knitted Top and Trousers with Front Seam, Frank Gehry for Tiffany & Co. Torque Concrete Bangle, Michael Michael Kors Sloan Oversized Python-Effect Leather Clutch, and Matiko Blake Wedges.

One of the most popular looks on the runway this spring is the crisp white paired with a saturated, bright color.  Max Mara showed hints of color with whites and Jil Sander really made the colors pop in her bright and lively collection.

The look can easily be adjusted to your comfort level- from little accessories to showstopping pieces.  Look for colors that are really bright and summer.  This trend will transition well into fall when the colors get a bit more jewel-toned.

From left to right: Zara Studio Blouse and Twill Shorts, Anthropologie Occluded Hoop Earrings in Coral, Anthropologie Pompom Zarape Clutch, and J. Crew Lilibeth Leather Sandals in Poppy.

From left to right: Zara Studio Shirt and Narrow Leg Studio Trousers, Anthropologie Tinalak Clutch, Anthropologie Accordion Drops in Orange, and Jimmy Choo Private Suede Sandals in Magenta.

When wearing white, remember to wear undergarments that match your skin tone and to carry around a stain removing stick.  Nothing like a spot of BBQ sauce to ruin a great look!  White outfits can take you from the farmer's market to the board room, from lounging poolside to drinks with the girls.  It is a great way to stay cool and look hot this summer.

Coco Birdie.