October 30, 2009

In A Clutch Frame of Mind

*Alexander McQueen Knuckle Duster Clutch (available at Net-A-Porter.com for $1,595)

Lately, I've been on the search for the perfect frame clutch. Prior to now, I believed that frame clutches were only meant for cocktail parties and black tie events. However, I recently witnessed someone "dressing down" the frame clutch. Her ensemble consisted of a denim blazer and black jersey dress all belted at the waist. The bag added a hint of glamor to an already-chic outfit. It was genius! Why didn't I think of that?!

Why NOT get a bag that can work equally well during a girls' night out on the town OR a black tie affair with a significant other?

My thoughts on how to achieve this "dressed down" look are to avoid frame clutches with rhinestone or crystal detailing. However, don't avoid detailing altogether. Beading, animal prints, pleating or ruffles will add just enough interest without looking too out of place. Also, don't be afraid of color. Keep the neutrals within your outfit and let the handbag do the talking.

Below are some of my favorites. Now I must decide which one I like the most. This may prove difficult since they're all SO different.

Needless to say, I'm definitely in a "clutch frame of mind". Are you with me?

first row:
Inge Christopher: Hard Case Snake Clutch - $144
Carlo Fellini Puff Quilt Clutch - $48

second row:
Spiegel Lace Clutch - $39
Arden B. Exposed Layer Zipper Clutch - $38

third row:
Santi CP3406 Clutch - $223
Nordstrom Kisslock Frame Silk Ruffle Clutch - $78


October 26, 2009

Extremely Chic Plaid (inspired by RSVP Bella Rain Boots)

Today, I received an email from 6pm.com advertising several sales including one on RSVP shoes. I usually ignore these emails but decided to follow the link out of curiosity. Luckily, I came across the RSVP Bella Rain Boot for only $9.95! I've been wanting a pair of rain boots but didn't want to pay much for them. With THAT price, I picked up a total of 4 pairs (1 for myself and 3 for my loved ones). Of course, I had to send out a "Sale Alert" to my Twitter and Facebook fashionistas. The news spread like wildfire! Within a few hours, the boots were sold out. I couldn't even view the site to pull the pictures for this blog post but fortunately was able to find some photos on glimpse.com. Whew! *wiping forehead*

A friend asked me to let her know if I find a coat to go with the green boots. I automatically thought that a plaid cape or jacket would be PERFECT! So, I decided to scour the net to find a couple options for the red, navy AND green boots and post them for those of you that were lucky enough to scoop up a pair.

One should never be afraid of color. There's always a way to make it work!

Check out my selections below and if you stumble across any other fabulous coats or jackets, let me know. A girl likes to have options, you know.


Forever 21: Cape Sleeve Plaid Coat - $42.80
American Eagle: Plaid Peacoat - $129.50


ModCloth: Cape Paid-era - $72.99
ModCloth: Best I Ever Plaid Coat - $87.99


Modcloth: Dalby Forest Coat - $114.99
Buckle: Jack B.B. Dakota Lei Coat - $44.62


The RSVP Bella Boot is still available at 6pm.com for less than $20! Click here to get your hands on them.

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October 23, 2009

Fashion Focus(ed): Designers of Chicago

After much anticipation, fashion week (although it only lasts 3 days) is officially underway in Chicago. The first major event was the Macy's Designers of Chicago runway show that featured 6 well-established designers who currently have items available at Macy's plus 6 emerging designers that were chosen for Macy's Chicago Fashion Incubator.

Although, one of my BFFs (best fashion friend) and I arrived right before the show and encountered a fully-packed venue, we were lucky enough to be offered seats right at the end of the runway amongst the media. That's what I'd like to call a MAJOR score!

Unfortunately, I was without my camera (the second time in this past week). Sooooo, me and my blackberry camera were reunited once again, all in the name of fashion.

The show consisted of many ready-to-wear items. Some may complain that there weren't many (if any) avant garde pieces. However, I believe that ready-to-wear is a favorite amongst Chicago fashionistas. We are constantly on the move and braving weather that at times involves experiencing all 4 seasons in one day. Our closets overwhelming consist of items that are unique yet practical, sophisticated yet wearable.

Based on the show, I've concluded that ruffles are here to stay and that some of the colors we will see in the Spring include blues, greens, corals and pinks. Ladies, it's all about femininity and color!

Some of my personal favorites were the following:

  • The pool blue/white tunic and wrap by Lara Miller: She took me to a warm and sunny place, even if it was for 5 minutes.

  • The sequin hats and bags by Blake Standard: They're such great ways to incorporate sequin into one's wardrobe.

  • The ruffle skirts and green/navy seersucker dress by 5p1t: The dress had pockets. Enough. Said.

  • The high collar pleated top by Tennille White: Plus-size fashion at is best!

  • The blazers and jackets by Lauren Lein: I'm a sucker for puff sleeves and asymmetry.

  • The dramatic headpieces as well as the grey/silver tweed halter gown by Jermikko: The cascading ribbon detail in the back was fantabulous.

  • The swing coat and jacket by Zamrie: They had so much movement! The jacket is officially on my "must have" list.

  • Everything by Audey: Her first piece resulted in a resounding "ahhh" from the crowd. Her use of colors and patterns was so refreshing.

Some of the crowd pleasers included the plus-sized models in Tennille White's showcase who WORKED the runway and the men that modelled Lee Allison shirts and ties wearing nothing else but boxers and dress socks (including the old school sock garters). So fun!

Overall, it was a fantastic runway show. Chicago represented well, in both the designs and the attendance. The room was filled to capacity despite the cold and rainy weather as well as the leaking and puddle-filled tent. When it comes to fashion, nobody puts Chicago in a corner. We're so fashion focus(ed)!

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October 18, 2009

Modern Vintage Chicago: Verdict = Major SWOON

This weekend, the producers of the Randolph Street Market are hosting an event entitled Modern Vintage Chicago. In my never-ending quest to get first dibs on goods prior to the masses, I attended the Preview Party on Friday evening. I'm a huge fan of the Randolph Street Market and Modern Vintage Chicago far exceeded my already high expectations! There were so many great vintage and vintage-inspired items as well as unique designs from local independent designers. Needless to say, I walked away with a few things - a flapper hat designed by the lovely ladies of Double Stitch, two necklaces and a pair of vintage earrings - and spent less than $100!

I was enamored with the wide range of vintage items available(low- and high-end) - from Bakelite earrings to vintage Chanel handbags; from pillbox hats to fur stoles. Plus, all of the vendors were nice and accommodating. The conversations alone were enough to entice me a buyer to purchase SOMEthing. It was shopper's heaven!

The DJ was great and the fashion show was fun! I can't really provide feedback on how the food tasted. It looked and smelled fantastic. However, seeing as that I (and my shopping partner) shopped until waaaay past the closing time of 9pm, there was no time to eat. Clearly, shopping was the only thing on our minds!

The only heartbreaking moment was learning that I had left my camera at home. Luckily, I was still able to snap a few great photos with my blackberry to give you a small glimpse of all the fabulousness I encountered (see below).

If you attended the event, let me know what you thought and bought. If you didn't attend and you're reading this on the morning of Sunday, October 18th, logoff your computer RIGHT NOW and head over to Modern Vintage Chicago. Don't forget to tell them ChiTown Fashionista sent ya!

^vendor, Kim Olson, looking extremely chic in a fur stole belted at the waist

"Must Adds" For Your Fashionista Files

Some of the vendors that I either already had an affinity for OR instantly fell in love with at the event:

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October 13, 2009

Giveaway #2 - Anna Fong Ribbon w/ Chain Necklace

First, I want to say CONGRATULATIONS to Ashley who won last week's Jade Nefertiti Bracelet Giveaway! I just know you'll love it!!

This week's giveaway is the Anna Fong Ribbon with Chain Necklace provided by Nicole of Shrink Boutique (love her!).

This necklace is the perfect blend of feminine (ribbon) and masculine (chain). It can be worn long or short but also as a headband or belt.

Anna Fong is a Chicago designer known for her fabulous accessories and clothing.

Shrink Boutique is a Chicago-based online store that offers some of THE most unique and funky clothing/accessories around.

Leave a comment indicating how you would rock it (necklace, belt or headband) AND what other accessories you would wear with it. I would love to see how YOU would accessorize an outfit that is centered around this necklace.
*Don't forget to include your email address


* Include links to pictures of the accessories described (which can be either your own pictures or websites that display the items described).

* Re-Tweet this giveaway.

* Subscribe to ChiTown Fashionista.

* Post a link to ChiTown Fashionista on your blog (please provide your blog's website address).

This giveaway will be open until midnight CST on October 18th. One lucky winner will be chosen at random.

Good Luck to all my fellow Fashionistas!!

*Comments are now closed for this giveaway*
CONGRATULATIONS to our winner, Natasha!

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Shoe Swoon: BCBG Max Azria Mayda

...When shoe design meets architecture. Would you rock it?

BCBG Max Azria Mayda available at Zappos for $395.


October 8, 2009

MODERN VINTAGE CHICAGO (10/16 to 10/18): The Randolph Street Market - Part Deux

As you all know, I'm a HUGE fan of the Randolph Street Market. It is here that I've found beautiful vintage handbags and jewelry as well as encountered some extremely talented independent designers. Needless to say, when I found out that the producers of the market were planning an event this month, I was overjoyed.

Modern Vintage Chicago will be held October 16th-18th and will feature the best vintage items and indie designers. On Friday, October 16th, there will be a Pre-Show benefiting the Chicago Fashion Foundation. Of course, I will be there. I have to get first dibs on all the goodies. :-)

Modern Vintage Chicago will consist of the Vintage Dealers Show and the Indie Designer Show. Some of THE best vintage dealers will be participating in the Vintage Dealers Show which will include items from designers such as Hermes, Dior and Chanel (swoon!). While the Indie Designer Show will consist of fabulous independent designers - including one of my most recent favorites, Shernett SWABY. Also, Lidu Newton, the wardrobe stylist for "Glee", will be selling some vintage pieces as well as items from her designer collection.

There will be fashion shows, an on-site seamtress, music and cocktails! I'm pretty sure it's the closest any fashionista will get to heaven on earth.

To get more details and purchase tickets, visit ModernVintageChicago.com. Will you be there?

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October 7, 2009

Celebrate With Me! Lunaversoul Bracelet GIVEAWAY!

In honor of my birthday AND 1-year blogiversary, ChiTown Fashionista will have a few giveaways during the month of October. Majority of these giveaways will consist of items from designers that I've blogged about this past year.

So, c'mon and celebrate with me by joining in on the fun and entering the giveaways. It's a party over here!

First up, is a beautiful Jade Nefertiti Bracelet from Lunaversoul.

CJ has blessed ChiTown Fashionista with one of the best pieces in her collection to offer up to one lucky winner!

Demonstrate your personal style by adding a comment describing the outfit you would wear with this lovely bracelet. I would love to see how YOU would incorporate it into your wardrobe.

  • Include links to pictures of the outfit described. The link(s) can be of you wearing the actual outfit or to websites that contain the items you described.

  • Re-Tweet this giveaway.

  • Subscribe to ChiTown Fashionista.

  • Post a link to ChiTown Fashionista on your blog (please provide your blog's website address).

This giveaway will be open until midnight CST on October 11th. Good Luck to you all and thanks for celebrating with me!

**Comments for this giveaway are now closed

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October 6, 2009

Handbag Swoon - Zhen U.N. Leathers Jaquara Handbag

October 2, 2009

THE Best Plus-Size Tights!! (Quality, Price and Comfort)

I practically LIVE in tights during the fall and winter seasons. I love the entire spectrum - from regular microfiber to fishnets to textured. However, I always have a problem finding tights that fit well without costing a fortune, are of high quality without costing a fortune and stay in place without rolling down while I'm going about my day-to-day activities. So, after trying several different brands over the years, I've finally discovered THE best pair of plus-size tights EVER!

Surprisingly, these tights can be found at the Avenue! Yes, the Avenue. You probably didn't expect that, did you? Even for me, it was an unexpected, yet pleasant, surprise. The microfiber tights are my favorites. They are so unbelievably comfortable that you won't even notice that you are wearing them. Plus, they work well with skirts and under pants. The herringbone and ribbed textured tights are equally as fabulous and this season, the Avenue has added fishnets to their line of tights.

Now, for the best part....if you purchase more than one pair, these tights will only set you back $5 a piece! I know, I know. I'm in love too! SO in love, I purchased several recently (see below) and am already preparing myself to buy more.

I firmly believe that these will convert every non-tights wearer above a size 12 into a full blown tights addict! So, what are you waiting for?!?! Visit the Avenue in person or online and stock up on these lovelies.

As always, you can thank me later. :-)

*first photo courtesy of Avenue.com