How To Accessorize Like a Stylist

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

The Art of Accessorizing

Capsule wardrobe success is all about versatility. Obviously your garments need to coordinate but the real secret to creating a trillion outfits out of 37.5 pieces is the strength of your accessory game. Accessories are the critical difference between putting on clothes and rocking an outfit.

If this seems intimidating, I get it. Accessorizing is an art. But, girl - you're savvy! You've already embraced your inner fashion stylist by creating a capsule wardrobe. Once you apply your obvious ingenuity to this easy accessorizing formula you'll be slaying outfits like it's your JOB!

Step 1: Outfit Base

Your outfit base is the simply the 1 - 2 garments that cover your nakedness. You could definitely leave the house like this, but no one would call it stylish. 

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 1: Outfit Base

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 1: Outfit Base

Before you start to accessorize, consider your outfit base. Is it neutral? Colorful? Does it feature textural details or an intricate print? The complexity of your dress, romper or top and bottom informs the complexity of the layer you'll add in Step 2. If there is a lot going on, keep the rest simple. If your base is canvas-like blank - let's paint!

Step 2: Add a Layer

How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 2: Add Texture Color or Print

How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 2: Add Texture Color or Print

This is what fashion bloggers call the "Third Item:" an additional element that adds dimension via texture, color or print. Think: hat, hair flair, belt, scarf, open chambray shirt or cardigan - even a statement necklace. A general guideline is that the additional element can anchor the outfit even if you don't add a lot of additional accessories.

Step 3:  Make It Pop

How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 3: Pick Your Jewelry

How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 3: Pick Your Jewelry

Personal Jewelry

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 3: Personal Jewelry

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 3: Personal Jewelry

I believe a girl should own a few pieces of personal jewelry that she wears with everything. For me it's a pave diamond disk (5th anniversary gift) and my wedding bands. You may have a pair of diamond studs or a delicate gold chain. Depending on the impact of your base and third layer, personal jewelry may be all you need. Should you decide to add additional jewelry these items are delicate enough to layer over. 

Balancing Trends

How to Accessorize Like a Stylist: Balancing Trends

How to Accessorize Like a Stylist: Balancing Trends

This is where so many well intentioned women fail the outfit challenge - loading on too many statements at once. When considering the following trend jewelry, select one per outfit: chandelier earrings, statement necklace, big cuff or arm candy. Keep the rest of your jewelry minimal.

Whatever your jewelry choice, make sure it vibes with your outfit. White linen dress or gauzy bohemian skirt? Pile on the delicate layers. Pencil skirt with white button down? Pair it with chandelier earrings and a thin gold chain. Jewel tone sheath dress? Opt for a statement necklace and simple studs. Swingy pants and fitted tank top? Try a cuff and thin gold hoops.

Step 4: Out The Door

(Appropriately) Fancy Footwork

Like your jewelry, your footwear should complement, not compete with the rest of your look. Bright pumps or exquisitely detailed stilettos could carry a neutral outfit on their own. Conversely, an ikat print romper or an exquisitely beaded ballgown begs for simple shoes. 

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Footwear

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Footwear

Above all, your shoes should fit the occasion. I don't care how expensive they were -- walking up the Eiffel Tower in 4 inch platform stilettos is not a good look. I've also witnessed an unimaginably chic woman work the 'ish out of a formal gown in metallic flats. The secret to style is looking effortless. The secret to looking effortless is feeling comfortable.

Grab Your Bag

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

Thankfully we've moved away from the era of the "IT BAG," when every wannabe Carrie Bradshaw had to have a Fendi Baguette. Hey, I am all for beautiful bags (and I did own a Fendi Baguette), but much like my shoes (but probably more to do with my two toddlers), these days I opt for practicality in purses. When selecting my handbag I ask myself:

  • Does it vibe with the outfit? 
  • Can I easily reach my stuff?
  • Will I have children with me? 
  • Am I going on a date or out with friends? 
MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

MappCraft | How to Accessorize Like A Stylist Step 4: Out the Door, Handbag

At this season of my life, with small children, an office job and infrequent cocktail parties, my handbag collection consists of:

SHOPPING TIP: When shopping for handbags, opt for neutrals (black, nude, brown or metallic) when purchasing a work tote or "It Bag." These are expensive and you'll want to use them often. Experiment with colors and prints with less costly styles like a crossbody or clutch.

I challenge you to invest in a bright bag that coordinates with an accent color in your core capsule. There is no way not to feel happy when you are wearing a colorful purse.

1 Outfit, 2 Ways

Want to see this formula in action? Here are two different looks created with the same base, re-styled accessories and swapped shoes. 

How To Accessorize Like a Stylist: Day Look. Keeping it casual with flat sandals and an open chambray shirt

How To Accessorize Like a Stylist: Day Look. Keeping it casual with flat sandals and an open chambray shirt

Wrapping Up

You probably have plenty of accessories already, you just weren't sure how to style them. However, if you feel like you could use a few more pieces to round out your collection, hit up a thrift store. Seriously! I love thrifting for vintage bags, jewelry and scarves. You can play around with different shapes, textures and colors without breaking the bank and you are guaranteed to find something completely unique. 

SHOPPING TIP: For your best chance at scoring a treasure for cheap, scour thrift stores in wealthy neighborhoods. 

Hopefully this basic to brilliant accessorizing formula helps you better visualize the elements of a well styled outfit. As you get more comfortable with the process, you'll start to tweak the formula and break the "rules" to create a look that feels 100% you. (PS: There are no rules.)

Be the Bright!

xoxo

Jenn

PS: If you like what I write, please click the heart. I'll be your best friend. 


The Only Capsule Wardrobe E-Book You Actually Need

If you appreciate the practical "how to put an outfit together" tips in this blog post you are going to LOVE my new e-book!

MappCraft | Tiny Closet Essential Survival Guide is the definitive source for creating a customized capsule wardrobe (full of color, texture and personality) and cementing your personal style in the process.

24 Ways to Wear A Scarf

MappCraft | 24 Ways to Wear A Scarf

MappCraft | 24 Ways to Wear A Scarf

World's Most Versatile Accessory

If you know me, you know I adore my Hermes scarf collection. Aside from their sentimental value (a decade of gifts from my husband), silk twill scarves are my chic and endlessly versatile secret for adding color and flair to my capsule wardrobe.

The 1 Scarf Styling Trick Guaranteed to Transform Your Capsule Wardrobe

Master this one simple little folding trick and you'll be well on your way to tying your scarves a million different ways.

24 Ways to Wear a Scarf

Now that you know how to knot, check out all the different ways I've rocked my scarves below. 

MappCraft | 24 Ways to Wear A Scarf

MappCraft | 24 Ways to Wear A Scarf

Shop Silk Twill Scarves

Silk Scarf Styling on Pinterest

Pssss... Follow my boards! 💋 

Did this photo montage inspire you to tie one on? Show me! 

Join 👉🏽 MappCraft | Tiny Closet Survival Guide 👈🏼 private Facebook group for my daily live #OOTDS (bloopers and all) and plenty of capsule fashion chatter.

PS: We're friends, right? If you click the heart below you'll make my March!

Be the Bright! Jenn

The 4 Step, Fool Proof Outfit Formula

MappCraft | The 4 Step, Fool Proof Outfit Formula

MappCraft | The 4 Step, Fool Proof Outfit Formula

Wearing Clothes vs. Wearing an Outfit

From the stiff-ish collar popping out from under her sweater, to the way she half tucks her tee shirt to the quirky personal touches she adds to each outfit - when a stylish girl walks in a room, everyone notices.

We all know a girl that always looks put together.

This is her secret.

The 4 Step Outfit Formula

Styling doesn't come easily to everyone, but it's definitely a skill you can hone if you break the process down to basics. 

Step 1: Outfit Base

The critical first step to creating an outfit is pretty straightforward - start with a base. Be it a top plus pants, jeans, shorts or a skirt; a dress or a jumpsuit, the outfit base refers simply to the clothes that cover your nakedness. Totally utilitarian.

A lot of women start and end at this step. Sure, you can leave the house in this get up, but with no hints of texture or personality - no one will mistake it for stylish. 

I recommend going through your wardrobe and identifying 5-6 core bases to build outfits around. Select classic garments that fit well and reflect your lifestyle. This will streamline your process and provide a reliable template to reference when creating looks.  

MappCraft | Fool Proof 4 Step Outfit Formula - Step 1: Outfit Base

MappCraft | Fool Proof 4 Step Outfit Formula - Step 1: Outfit Base

Step 2: Add a Layer

Now things start to get interesting. Once you've settled on your outfit base the next step is to add a layer. Layers are like throw pillows -- they add visual interest, color or texture and may or may not serve a functional purpose.

Examples of layers include another top, a cardigan, a vest, a printed wrap or a blazer, leather bomber or denim jacket you plan to wear all day (not outerwear).

MappCraft | Fool Proof 4 Step Outfit Formula - Step 2: Add A Layer

MappCraft | Fool Proof 4 Step Outfit Formula - Step 2: Add A Layer

Step 3: Make It Pop

Woo Hoo! Accessories in the house! Now that you've got your functional base sorted and you've created dimension with a layer, it's time to add personality with accessories. Jewelry is a given, but also consider a scarf (around the neck, your head, your wrist, your ponytail), a belt, hair flair, a hat or a cluster of pins. 

MappCraft | Fool Proof 4 Step Outfit Formula - Step 3: Make It Pop

MappCraft | Fool Proof 4 Step Outfit Formula - Step 3: Make It Pop

Step 4: Out The Door

Look at you girl! Almost ready to go. Time to add the ultimate finishing touches - bag, shoes and outerwear (if necessary). The formality and details of your outfit will dictate which shoes and bag you choose. If you are feeling a bit monochromatic, add color with a bag. If the outfit is heavy on color and prints, ground it with neutral footwear. Don't be afraid to rock sneakers with a suit pant or a metallic clutch with denim. And NO! your shoes and bag do not have to match. 

MappCraft | Fool Proof 4 Step Outfit Formula - Step 4: Out the Door

MappCraft | Fool Proof 4 Step Outfit Formula - Step 4: Out the Door


"The Fool Proof 4 Step Outfit Formula" is an excerpt from my new e-book Tiny Closet Essential Survival Guide: How to Create the Ultimate Capsule Wardrobe, out late March 2017.

Join the TCESG launch list and I will send you a coupon code good for $5 off the Guide (reg. price $20)! 

Be the Bright,

Jenn

(P.S. Click the heart and you'll have mine)

LuLaRoe Key Piece #5: Julia Dress, Black & White Print

LuLaRoe Key Piece 5: Julia Dress B/W Print

Put Me In Coach!

With her casual cool baseball sleeves, crazy comfy fabric and layer loving lines, LuLaRoe Key Piece #5: Julia Dress, Black & White Print, complements of LuLaRoe Consultant Cheryl Holloway, is undisputed wardrobe bench strength.

While sexy Julia Coral is game for cocktails and chill; Julia B&W Print is a pinch hit player you can count on -- no matter what curve balls the week throws your way. 

Manic Monday 

LuLaRoe Key Piece #5: Julia Dress, Black & White Print | The throw it on solution to manic Monday mornings

LuLaRoe Key Piece #5: Julia Dress, Black & White Print | The throw it on solution to manic Monday mornings

The good ole work week welcome: You woke up late, can't find matching socks for the kids and the last thing you have the brain cells to brainstorm is an outfit. LuLaRoe Julia B&W Print steps up to the plate! Throw on a bright scarf (to wake up your face) and a heel (to look like you tried) and slide right into the home office. SAFE!

Thirsty Thursday

LuLaRoe Key Piece #5: Julia Dress, Black & White Print | Sassy When She Wants to Be

LuLaRoe Key Piece #5: Julia Dress, Black & White Print | Sassy When She Wants to Be

Work From Home Thursday! Best. Day. Ever. No mad rush to beautify by day break; you don't bother to bathe until 4. Then it's off to entertain your therapist for an hour followed by dinner and drinks with a bestie. LuLaRoe Julia B&W Print can play this game! Casual cute always and extra sassy with accessories, LuLaRoe Julia B&W Print holds her own - on and off the field. 

Weekend Warrior

LuLaRoe Key Piece #5: Julia Dress, Black & White Print | Your busy Saturday style strategy

LuLaRoe Key Piece #5: Julia Dress, Black & White Print | Your busy Saturday style strategy

Whoever came up with expression "Working for the Weekend" wasn't a working mom. Saturday is double header of household duties and child chasing. LuLaRoe Julia B&W Print shows up in the clutch, helps you swoop up kids from soccer and sweep up the clubhouse with ease - and style. It's been a long day, Momma. Toss a few back and curl up on the couch with your iPhone - you earned it. 


MANY THANKS TO  LULAROE CONSULTANT CHERYL HOLLOWAY  | LULAROE KEY PIECE #5: JULIA DRESS, BLACK & WHITE PRINT

MANY THANKS TO LULAROE CONSULTANT CHERYL HOLLOWAY | LULAROE KEY PIECE #5: JULIA DRESS, BLACK & WHITE PRINT

Many thanks to LuLaRoe Consultant Cheryl Holloway for inspiring this series AND for LuLaRoe Key Piece #5: Julia Dress, Black and White Print

If you are just joining the LuLaRoe Capsule Challenge - BACK UP!

  1. Read this: From Hater to Fan Girl, My LuLaRoe Capsule Challenge
  2. Now this: LuLaRoe Key Piece #1: Perfect Tee, Striped
  3. Next: LuLaRoe Key Piece #2: Julia Dress, Coral
  4. Another: LuLaRoe Key Piece #3: Sarah Cardigan, Heather Grey
  5. One more: LuLaRoe Key Piece #4 Azure Skirt, Black

Love LuLaRoe? On a unicorn hunt? Wonder where I scored that awesome cheetah print Cassie? Talk to me! (And dammit if you've read this far, click the little heart below!)

xoxo Jenn

LuLaRoe Key Piece #1: Perfect Tee, Black & White Stripes

LuLaRoe Key Piece #1: Perfect Tee, Striped

LuLaRoe Key Piece #1: Perfect Tee, Striped

Surprisingly, The Perfect Tee

"What did I get myself into?" I wondered, shooting an incredulous glance at the mirror. 

With elbow length sleeves, two curious side slits and a questionable bell shaped hem, the black and white striped LuLaRoe Perfect Tee I received from Consultant Lorean Bradley, looked more like a confused mini dress than something I would describe as a tee shirt.

After a few minutes pondering the top's odd silhouette I remembered Cheryl mentioning something about knots. 

"Ahhhhh.....!" A lightbulb went off and I started to play. 

Aspirational Athleisure 

queen of the soccer moms in lularoe and aspirational accessories

queen of the soccer moms in lularoe and aspirational accessories

For Outfit #1, I knotted the LuLaRoe Perfect Tee in front and paired it with solid grey leggings (courtesy of LuLaRoe Consultant Cheryl Holloway) and my fresh grey New Balances. From there, I elevated a potentially super casual look by adding a Hermes scarf as a head wrap (the red print picks up on the sneakers), loaded on mixed metal David Yurman and Kendra Scott arm candy and finished the look with a Louis Vuitton pouch I scored on Poshmark for like $100. 

Not So Neutral Territory 

10 Key Pieces: LuLaRoe Perfect Tee, Striped with Cassie Cheetah

Outfit #2 is so stinking cute I want to marry it. AMIRIGHT? If you are new to print mixing, start with black and white stripes and an animal print - like this cheetah print Cassie skirt, also from LuLaRoe Consultant Lorean Bradley. It's a no fail "Damn, she's chic!" formula.

I styled the LuLaRoe top and skirt with my trusty Joie army green anorak (you need a jacket like this in your life, #trust), strappy DVF platform heels and a metallic crackle YSL Muse bag I bought for full price in the days before daycare. The outfit is topped with a pop of orange via an epic Mother's Day gift, my beloved Hermes Collier de Chien Cuff.

Who needs disposable income when you have two toddlers with great taste?

French Dressing

10 Key Pieces: LuLaRoe Perfect Tee, Striped with Azure Skirt Black

When paired with a black LuLaRue Azure skirt (courtesy of LuLaRue Consultant Amy Homan), Outfit #3 plays up the striped Perfect Tee's Parisian vibe with an Hermes scarf as necktie and strappy gold DVF sandals. My orange Hermes cuff is just the French Kiss this look needs to seal the outfit deal. Tres jolie!


On Deck! LuLaRoe Key Piece #2 LuLaRoe Julia Dress, Coral

Stay Tuned!

Do you love LuLaRoe? On a quest for unicorn leggings? Wonder where I scored that awesome cheetah print Cassie? Talk to me! (And dammit if you've read this far, click the little heart below!)

xoxo Jenn

From Hater to Fan Girl: My LuLaRoe Capsule Challenge

You Got A Party On Your Pants, Girl

Back in August a childhood friend and LuLaRoe Fashion Consultant, Cheryl Holloway, messaged me to see if I would be interested in trying a pair of the brand's ubiquitous leggings.

Cheryl: "You'll love them!"

Me: "Oy!" Followed by "Ummmmm" and finally, #icant (hashtag included).

I didn't have anything against LuLaRoe, specifically. Okay maybe I did. Fine! I thought the crazy cat lady leggings were cheesy and was getting annoyed AF at the relentless stream of Facebook notifications inviting me to a pop up party that always seemed to be hosted in a random closet in Norfolk, Va.

LuLaRoe leggings are sweeping the nation

LuLaRoe leggings are sweeping the nation

Secretly curious to try the rabidly followed leggings brand you can only buy on Facebook for myself I relented with a warning that I would never leave the house in whimsical printed leg wear.

And Then This Happened

60K Views Can't Be Wrong

So yes. I got the leggings, tried them on and made a popular video about my reaction. Like, VERY popular. Guys. I have been making videos for years and nothing has ever generated this level of engagement and enthusiasm. Best part? All the comments were nice. I liked these LuLaRoe pizza print legging loving ladies and I wanted more of their attention. 

Ever the content opportunist, my mind was swirling with ideas. How could I put my signature capsule wardrobe, fashion-classic spin on a brand fundamentally committed to clashing prints and flash sales? 

I reached out to several LuLaRoe Fashion Consultants and pitched the idea of collaborating on 10 Key Pieces: LuLaRoe Capsule Challenge. They would each donate a garment and I would create dozens of looks from the limited collection. The kickers:

  • No crazy prints or wild colors
  • Garments must coordinate with my Fall 2016 Capsule Wardrobe  
  • Overall aesthetic reflective of my personal (non pizza pant wearing) style
  • I would add my own accessories

With 7 LuLaRoe Consultants at my disposal, I figured the process would be easy peasy. I'd look at some pictures, select a few styles in my size, the Consultants would send them, Amanda would snap some pics - Voila! Post up by Labor Day. Typical retail brand collaboration. 

Turns out LuLaRoe isn't your typical retail brand. 

My LuLaRoe capsule had to reflect my personal style

My LuLaRoe capsule had to reflect my personal style

How To Catch A Unicorn

It didn't take me long to crack the code on what fuels the billion dollar LuLaRoe machine: Good old fashion FOMO. Just because you have a taste for pizza pants, it doesn't mean you can just order up a pair. LuLaRoe Consultants don't control their inventory. From sizes to prints, they get what they get and you get a few hours to shop that inventory once a week.

To claim your coveted leggings, you must show up often and early to your LuLaRoe Consultants' Facebook hosted pop up pizza parties. Even then it's practically impossible to locate your favorite flavor from just one Consultant. Best to have several pizza pant purveyors on speed dial so you can scour their menu as soon as it posts and type SOLD! before anyone else grabs your slice of the pie. 

You think it's hard to find pizza pants?

Try landing a black and white striped Cassie pencil skirt in size S.

Never happened. 

This month's LuLaRoe unicorn: Halloween leggings. I'll bet you can't score the Frankenstein print.

This month's LuLaRoe unicorn: Halloween leggings. I'll bet you can't score the Frankenstein print.

Sizes, Smizes

Another challenge I encountered creating my LuLaRoe capsule was sizing. While the leggings are pretty true to their OS claim, everything else seemed to run very big and very long. Just when I thought I'd nailed my LuLaRoe skirt size (XS, based on a Cassie) I scored a classic black XS Azure skirt and damn well if didn't fit like an XS: Tight. Grrrrr. 

Tailoring is out, too. Why? Because LuLaRoe would rather you not, that's why. Instead, they provide countless ideas on how to knot or tie or reconfigure the garments to work for your height or styling preference. 

Good thing I'm inventive.

Fit to be tied in a LuLaRoe Perfect Tee

Fit to be tied in a LuLaRoe Perfect Tee

Drumroll, Please

Challenges aside, once my LuLaRoe 10 Key Piece Capsule came together I was very pleased with the results. Some highlights:

  • LuLaRoe fabric is indeed very, very comfortable
  • The Classic and Perfect Tee tops are roomy and hit the mid thigh in the right spot
  • The Julia dress is versatile and easy to layer
  • The Cassie pencil skirt is a fashion shape shifter - I styled it as a skirt, a top - even an infinity scarf!
  • All garment styles work together, which is essential for building an effective capsule

I am very pleased to present my hard earned and tirelessly sourced 10 Key Pieces: LuLaRoe Capsule. 

10 Key LuLaRoe Pieces

LuLaRoe 10 piece capsule wardrobe

LuLaRoe 10 Key Pieces Capsule | Top, left: (Large Image) Perfect Tee, striped; (Smaller Images) Julia Dress, coral; Azure Skirt, black; Classic Tee, grey; Julia Dress, black print, grey sleeves. Bottom, left: (Smaller Images) Leggings OS, poppy print; Sarah Cardigan, heather grey; Julia Dress, black solid, grey sleeves; Leggings OS, solid grey; (Large Image) Cassie skirt, leopard print


Paired With...

LuLaRoe 10 piece capsule wardrobe accessories

The Results...

Stay tuned Thursday for the first in a series of LuLaRoe outfit variations created with my 10 Key LuLaRoe Pieces.

On Deck! Key Piece #1: The exceptionally versatile LuLaRoe Perfect Tee, Striped.

10 Key Pieces: LuLaRoe Perfect Tee, Striped

10 Key Pieces: LuLaRoe Perfect Tee, Striped

Do you love LuLaRoe? On a quest for unicorn leggings? Wonder where I scored that awesome cheetah print Cassie? Talk to me! (And dammit if you've read this far, click the little heart below!)

xoxo Jenn

My LuLaRoe Glam Squad

Click the links for more information and to join their private LuLaRoe Pop Up Shops

LuLaRoe Fashion Consultant Cheryl Holloway

LuLaRoe Fashion Consultants Teri & Molly

LuLaRoe Fashion Consultants Teri & Molly

LuLaRoe Fashion Consultants Teri & Molly

LuLaRoe Fashion Consultant Lorean Bradley

LuLaRoe Fashion Consultant Lorean Bradley

LuLaRoe Fashion Consultant Lorean Bradley