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A Wardrobe Consulting, Styling and Personal Shopping service catering to women in  the New York City area. We are the fashion solution, to save you time and empower you to feel confident in your style. We specialize in petites.

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Are You Complicating Things?

Diane Pollack

We all know that women have many options of clothing to choose from. This gives us more opportunity to create a personal style, but it can also make things complicated and overwhelming.

Let’s think about the girl who is a “tomboy” growing up. It could have been you, your daughter, a friend growing up or your friend’s daughter. Many girls go through a stage where they only want to wear pants. And despite how the mom may argue with her, the girl at this time of her life has made a style decision.

So what happens when there is a special event and the girl is supposed to dress up? Well, one of two things happen.

1) Depending on what exactly the event is, who is throwing it and how young the girl is, she may be able to get away with not wearing a dress.

Often though, what happens is the second thing.

2) The mother forces the little girl to wear the dress which she is miserable about.

The good news here…

We are now all grown-up and can actually make the decisions on what we want to wear.

So are we sometimes forcing ourselves to wear things that we don’t really want to?

Why do we do this and are there other options?

Image from freedigitalphotos.net by Stuart Miles

Image from freedigitalphotos.net by Stuart Miles

Yes, usually there are other options.  In most cases, we may be thinking we have to buy and own things from every category. The truth is, that if there is a category or two that doesn’t suit you, chances are there are ways around it.

 Let’s go back to the special occasion. If you as an adult don’t want to wear a dress you don’t have to. That is right, you heard me. If you are going to a dressy event and you don’t like wearing dresses, there are options for wearing pants and adding shoes, jewelry bags and other accessories to the outfit that will make it very appropriate for a special occasion. So if you don’t like wearing dresses, simply don’t wear them. (One advantage to being an adult) 

I was never a fan of shorts. But as a kid going to camp, I had no choice. Many years ago, it hit me; I really don’t need to seek out purchasing new shorts. The bulk of the summer, I can wear pants or dresses and pretty much avoid shorts. I do keep around a few pairs for active sporty events or sitting in grass etc. However, shorts are no longer an item on my summer shopping list.

Similarly, I was recently working with a client who was looking for some cropped summer pants. She is a difficult fit, because her tummy is a much larger proportion than her legs. In the winter she does well with leggings which can stretch and cling accordingly. So when she told me she was on the look out for summer pants, I proposed to her the question. Did she really want summer pants because it was a category that she thought she needed, or would she be equally happy to instead focus on some breezy summer dresses which would be an easier fit for her?

Now this is just food for thought. She may have some summer tops that she loves and hence want the pants to go with them. Wait could we look for skirts instead? Maybe she loves pants and that is fine too, we will seek out some that will work for her.

But the point is, if there is a category you struggle with, present yourself with the question, is this a category I need in my wardrobe or do I just feel some how obligated to own things in all categories.? 

You might be relieved to find that you have one less category to shop for.

Don’t make these 7 fashion faux pas this summer

Diane Pollack

There are plenty of fashion faux pas people make all year long, but some are directly related or more visible in summer clothing. So I thought now would be a good time for you to be aware of them and make any corrections as needed.

Let's start with foundation pieces.

1) Many bras now, no matter what your size, have molded cups included. When you are wearing a tight tee-shirt and you can clearly see the outline of the entire molded cup, chances are your bra is too big, causing the cups to stand away from your body.

Sometimes you will be able to see the edge of your bra cutting across your boob. In this case, the cup size is probably too small and your boobs are overflowing the cup.

Also, in the bra-world, make sure that you have a smooth bra on for these clingy tee shirts. Lacy bras will cause bumps and not lay smoothly.

Now let's talk about bra straps.

2) I am not being prim and proper here when I say that I can not stand bra straps hanging out. A slight peek on a top that doesn't always cover entirely, is no big deal. What really bothers me is when someone is wearing a designed top, such as a racerback, with a regular bra.

Please get with the program here. The racerback is a design detail that is marred by additional straps. Racerback bras are just as easy to wear as regular bras and everyone should have at least one in their wardrobe if they are going to wear a top that calls for it.

Similarly, if you have a halter top, make sure that you have a bra that adjusts to this style.  Ditto for any other styles that may call for bras to be adjusted to hide the straps.

Also notice the color of your bra. No dark bras under light tops. Best to match close to the color or go with a nude bra.

Now I am jumping to another pet peeve of mine. Shoes.


3) Ladies, why is it that I see so many of you with shoes that are clearly too big on you? I don't know how you walk in them without your feet slipping out. I don't know what you do in the winter with your boots because I can't see it. But when you have a shoe, like a pump, where your heel is clearly not touching the back of the shoe and you can almost fit your finger in there, it is clearly too big. Yes, you look like the little girl below in her mom's shoes.

Image from InStyle magazine

Image from InStyle magazine

To continue with shoes.

4) Sometimes I see women in light flirty sundresses with more serious closed-toe shoes and frankly, it looks weird. Light flowy summer dresses are best with sandals or some kind of open shoes.

Your career summer dresses, you will continue to wear with more corporate and possibly closed shoes, but keep your casual summery dresses light and fun. This will also apply to summery cocktail dresses. No pumps please.

Now I know you know this, but I will just put it out there as a “don't”.

5) Should you choose to wear leggings, please wear a top that covers your crotch.

Circling back to the strap concept... well kind of.
 
6) Just as bra straps can interfere with the clean lines and design of a garment so can adding jewelry. Although not a true fashion "rule", another pet peeve of mine is when I see women wearing one-shouldered tops/dresses with a necklace. Please let this clean line speak for itself and don's distract the eye. Opt for earrings instead.

The same can be said for necklaces that interfere with other designed necklines like halters or keyholes and also with other design details such as ruffles or buttons that the necklace might compete with.

And last but definitely not least. 

7) The number one fashion rule, any time of the year, not to break is to be AUTHENTIC. There is nothing worse than someone looking or feeling like they don't belong. Remember your clothing is meant to empower you, not deflate you.

Still confused about if what you are wearing works? Reach out to me, I can help.

Now & Later

Diane Pollack

So I hate to be a hater, but…

And everyone is entitled to an opinion, but…

And fashion rules are now being broken, but…

OK, so let me explain. As I was recently reading my Instyle magazine, I saw a spread about fashion for now and for later. Now I love mileage out of a multi-seasonal item, but not everything works!

And even if some items can work for more than one season, I think this spread looks like a bunch of fashion don’ts. And if the models, in a professional fashion shoot look bad, you can only imagine how the woman who is not “model-like” might look.

I have already talked to you about THE OTHER 1%, who are fashionistas, purposely breaking all the old rules and are the rare few who can get away with it.

So let’s dig into this spread, so I can explain to you why I think these styling choices are not good options.

Instyle Magazine

Instyle Magazine

This spring dress looks great with the open toe sandals. A denim or other light weight jacket could be added for a little extra warmth on a cool spring day. Cute!

What is wrong with the NOW?

The cardigan isn’t bad (I could split hairs, but won’t) and I do love the belt for extra styling and shape definition, but the heavy black books, look just that, heavy. Since the dress is full, you don’t want a full slouch boot. Something that clings to the legs would be better to give her more shape, but then you still have the heavy dark color; so this dress is just not great with tall dark boots.

Instyle Magazine

Instyle Magazine

Once again the LATER outfit looks cute, but “oh my!” I think this lady got swallowed up in the NOW. This is a major proportion issue and would be especially worse if you are petite and / or fuller. You are working with an over-sized blazer, so unless you are the “one percent” you are best to stick to the rule of proportion; when one item is full the other should be slim.

Actually, we just referenced that above with the boots. You need to see some part of a women’s shape underneath or you can risk looking larger with all of the fabric.

So not only should her pants not be so full but they should not be cropped. A long pant would serve to elongate her and not truncate her. And then adding sneakers to this only serves to make it worse. Please add some kind of heel to carry all this volume of fabric.

Instyle Magazine

Instyle Magazine

The LATER is adorable. Light weight dress and light colors are perfect for spring. Please don’t break out this dress and do what the stylist did here in the NOW. This dress is not made to wear a turtle neck under. Dark color, heavy fabric, all underneath just looks terrible; too heavy and out of season for the dress.  Again a denim jacket or other light weight jacket on top would look adorable. In this case the coloring in the boots is OK, but still shows little leg shape and looks bulky. Please wait to wear this dress till it is warm.

Instyle Magazine

Instyle Magazine

In this last case, I actually like the NOW much better than the LATER. The colors are mid-tone and it is long sleeves and looks great with jeans boots and leather jacket for the cool transitional season days. Although the LATER is not the worst outfit, it is not the best either. In this case the blouse looks too fall-ish and too dressy for the shorts. For these light neutral shorts, you are much better off with a blouse in a breezy fabric in lighter colors (similar to the dress above).

I am interested to hear what you have to say. What do you think of these outfits?  Hit reply and let me know your thoughts.

#Styleinpiration (and tips)

Diane Pollack

I am sure you have a lot of fun events on your calendar this season and are wondering what to wear. Well, of course, it is going to depend on the details of the event and your personal style.

I have put together some looks for you. Perhaps you will love the looks, perhaps you will love individual pieces or perhaps you will find inspiration.

I am also including some styling tips, which I hope you find helpful.

(All looks are shoppable, click on the image for details)

This look is great for a bridal or baby shower, date or after work event.

STYLIST TIP - Make the look more casual (maybe for brunch), by changing the shoes to espadrille sandals and adding a denim jacket.

This outfit is great for a business casual office or a casual Friday in a more formal office.

STYLIST TIP - For those afraid of pattern mixing, this is a great way to do it. The pattern on the jacket and the shoes are both small and subtle and separated by the solid jeans.

Are you speaking at an event or have a big client meeting? This outfit with its clean lines and bold color will have a great impact.

STYLIST TIP - The circles in the earrings mirror the shape of the round bag and everything has a clean and bold mod look.

Going on vacation or just dreaming of those hot summer days in July and August?

STYLIST TIP - To maintain the earthy feeling, keep the look neutral in colors and keep your accessories “organic” looking with materials like wood and raffia.

For that opening party event, big birthday bash or non-traditional wedding - go bold!

STYLIST TIP - Keep it tonal with an array of warm vibrant colors. The earrings subtly tie the colors back to each other.

I hope you got some great ideas or at least enjoyed the eye-candy. For more help please contact me. I have a spring promo going on now.

Stylempower's spring promotion

I want to help you with your wardrobe and for those committed to feeling empowered, here is a quick action promotion. The first 3 people to schedule a consult and then purchase a package will get 50% off the regular pricing. Schedule your consult now!

ENJOY ALL YOUR EVENTS!

Excavation

Diane Pollack

We are going to do a little archaeology dig in your closet, analyze the “skeletons” we find and try to identify the targeted holes in your wardrobe. We are also going to identify areas where you might be wasting money on the wrong purchases.

Now I am well aware that everyone has different wardrobe needs, but I thought by telling you a few client stories, this might to help identify some of your own issues.

THE HOLES

One great example is Renee, who had purchased various black bottoms - skirts and pants, with different lengths and details. Although all black, they were uniquely different and served different purposes. So one might think: "black goes with everything so she will be able to get great use out of these pieces.”

Well, first of all, I do not think that black is best with everything. If you want to know more about that, you can read  DOES BLACK GO WITH EVERYTHING?


But matching was not the issue. The problem was that these were career pieces and when we looked in her closet, she had bulky sweaters, casual tees etc. and very few career tops. So this was her hole.

Similarly I worked with another woman who had numerous printed tops, which looked great with jeans, but she could not wear jeans to work. Her hole was that she was missing bottoms in various solids to wear with these tops.

MY PERSONAL HOLE IN THE WARDROBE

I hate to wear flats. I know many of you cannot relate, but bear with me to get the concept of the story. So when I put on casual wear such as stylized tee shirts and sweatshirts, I pulled out my pointy-toe kitten heels (my version of “flats”) but the outfits just weren't working.

For others, I might recommend the slip on sneakers that are ubiquitous, but when I put them on, they just don’t look good, they are not my style and I don’t feel empowered. This was the hole in my wardrobe. I finally found a unicorn; it was a high platform, pointy toe, slip on sneaker with ombre sequins. They are perfect and I love them. However, they are bold and black and they don’t go with everything. So I still have a hole in my wardrobe and am on the hunt for the sister unicorn in a neutral like olive or pinkish tan.

What are your holes? What are the missing pieces you need to take your outfits from Fine 2 Fab?

On the flip side, are you wasting money on some of your purchases?

WASTED $ ON PURCHASES

I just had a conversation with a woman who loves black boots. Don’t we all? She was telling me that each black boot she owns has a different design detail. For instance a biker style on one and studs all over the other. In this case the design details are not enough to differentiate the boots if they serve the same purpose. So if the boots have different heel heights, some are ankle and some are high, some cling like a sock and others are for tucking your pants in, one is for bad weather, then yes, by all means, they are worthwhile. But if the biker boot and the studded boot can be worn with the same things, then you are wasting money on redundancy.

Speaking of redundancy, have you seen the short video on my closet rejuvenation page? I didn’t know what I would find in Margaret’s closet when she agreed to be videoed. What I found was that she liked brightly colored sweaters, which may be okay, but they were all similar styles and weights. So if she had owned a variety of different sweaters such as turtlenecks, cables, cardigans, interesting sleeves etc. and they were all bright, they would be different enough to own many and the different styles would serve different purposes, But instead she owned too much of the same type which just ends up being a waste of money.

So in summation, I will say that your wardrobe needs to be a balance of 4 categories.

1) Work wear - Since you will probably be wearing this five times a week this should be a large piece of your wardrobe pie.

2) Casual / off-duty wear - If you are only wearing this on your “weekends” then it is a smaller part of your wardrobe. If your work wear is more casual, there may be cross-over or if you work from home or work in an extremely casual environment then this may be combined with category 1.

3) Dressy clothes - this includes cocktail to black-tie and should be a small percentage of your wardrobe.

4) Going out clothes - this is probably slightly larger than your dress clothes, but not too large. Bonus if you can cross-over say a dressy top from your dressy wear and wear it with jeans to go out.

Hopefully, these examples of my clients and personal situation will give you an idea of the holes you may have in your wardrobe, especially dressy vs. casual pieces.

If you have figured it out, this will give you targeted pieces to look for when you go shopping.

If you need to go deeper with your excavation, contact me - I would love to help you out.

A dressy dress does not look good with everyday shoes and bag.

Dressy+dress+before.png
Dressy+dress+update.jpg

It happened on Saturday...

Diane Pollack

Well it is April and Saturday’s weather was just what I needed to say, “enough with the fur, wool, down coats and other winter clothing. I am ready to break out my spring wardrobe”.

What are the new trends out there?

It is up to me as your style resource to fill you in. And for those that have been with me for a while, you know I always say that “trends are suggestions and not mandates”.

I supply the information, you make the decisions. How does that sound?

FABRICS & THEMES

The new hottest theme for spring is utility. This includes tops and bottoms with various cargo pockets, as well as straps, tabs and belts. The boiler suit is the newest jumpsuit. Leather is all over the place for spring, both in traditional neutrals and more spring-like colors. Crochet and netting are used in dresses, tops and dusters. Arts & crafty clothing continue the boho vibe. Feathers and fringe are still popular adornments. Re-worked versions of denim continue with patchwork, fraying, new washes and more.

SILHOUETTES

Easily wearable pieces include pleated skirts, cardigans and paper-bag waist pants. After all this athleisiure (which is still strong), there is a return to more structured suiting and sophistication. However, the bike short is back. Joggers and baggy denim are some of the new casual looks. As always, trenches show up for spring. Tech-y fabrics like parachute materials are the new casual versions of light weight outerwear.

Click on the image to shop these looks. - Utility, cargo, paper-bag waist, trenches and pleated skirts

Click on the image to shop these looks. - Utility, cargo, paper-bag waist, trenches and pleated skirts

COLORS

Head to toe tan / beige neutrals are a thing; great for the classic minded and now it is trendy. On the flip side of the coin, vibrant colors are also a thing. Brightly colored suiting or just a bright item paired back to a neutral. Living Coral is the color of the year. Bright yellow is also a huge color trend.

PRINTS & PATTERNS

One of the biggest patterns of the season is the bandanna print, including more multi-colored versions of paisley prints and scarf prints with panels and borders. Tie-dye is back. Mixing prints and patterns in one garment continue. Gingham and tropical will be favorites in the true summer months.

SHOES

The slide is still in, but flip-flops have made a return. The white flat tennis sneaker such as Stan Smith’s have been rampant. These continue, but the new trendy sneaker is now the clunky trainer sneaker. For those who like comfort the sporty sandals are in. The dressy - sexier sandal is the floss strap sandals. And for fun, try a sculptured heel or printed shoe.

Click on the image to shop these styles.

Click on the image to shop these styles.

ACCESSORIES

Hair accessories are big this season, especially fun barrettes and stuffed fabric headbands. Seashells adorn everything from shoes, to bags to jewelry.

BAGS

Mico bags and super over-sized totes are both new. Top handle bags, belt bags and chain straps continues. Try a straw bag for summer.

Click on the image to shop these styles.

Click on the image to shop these styles.

That is a wrap for your overview of some of the many trends this season. If you need help shopping for anything, just let me know.

HAPPY SPRING, HAPPY SHOPPING!





Sunnies and more...

Diane Pollack

Well, Spring is here (at least they say).

Unfortunately, I think we will still be wearing those winter coats and sweaters for a while longer. (More about that in a little.)

However, I don’t think it is a bad idea to start strategizing about some of your purchases.


And so with that, I would like to let you in on which Spring months will provide the best deals on what items.

MARCH

Now is a great time to buy sunglasses. There are more styles on sale in March than any other month. And what I love on top of the deals, is that you can actually start wearing them immediately!

Wayfarers and aviators are classics. If you are looking for some new fun styles, I put together some great options. (And if you like, just click on the image, they are all shoppable).

Click on the image to shop these styles

Click on the image to shop these styles

APRIL
Many of the big department stores and some of the online resources are offering Friends & Family discounts. So make sure to take advantage of these great deals.

MAY

Although, you may be thinking Spring clothes, May is a great time to get discounts on coats, suits, formal dresses, lingerie and handbags.


If you are ready to “dive-in,” you are in luck with swimwear prices taking a “plunge.” And of course, don’t forget about those Memorial Day sales.

Click on the image to shop these styles

Click on the image to shop these styles

In the last Stylempower insider news, I asked you to tell me about some of your wardrobe issues. I got a reply that I think resonates with many of us at this time of year, and I want to share it with you:


“I'm tired of the same few winter sweaters.”

See what I have to say to that below.

Make the sweaters look a little different by:

Accessorizing

- Try a belt. Best on thinner sweaters as thick ones may make you look thick.

- Play around with fashion scarves (indoor scarves).

- Wear a great necklace.

Layering

- Wear a collared button down under your sweater and let the hem and cuffs stick out. You can also add the necklace or belt with this.

- Wear a blazer or jacket over a thin sweater.

- Wear a vest over a thin sweater – some outerwear vests can also be worn as indoor clothing. Check to see if you have any that will work.

- Cardigans can be belted too.

And something that I did not tell her, but I am adding now.

Un-layering

- Wear a button-down cardigan as a sweater with nothing under it.

And of course looking on the bright side. This makes looking forward to our Spring wardrobe that much more exciting.

And as always, if you need help, shopping for those great finds or re-inventing your wardrobe, reach out to me for help.

Let Me Help You With Your Spring Wardrobe

Diane Pollack

We are in the  homestretch of this cold weather. Soon we will be starting to wear our Spring clothes, YAY!

The magazines and stores have already started in with Spring fashions. (My Spring trend report to come as soon as we all get a little bit of that Spring Fever in the air).

So here I am prepping for how I can help you with your Spring wardrobe. I have a few questions. I will not make you click on a survey link to open them. I want you to see how super quick this survey is.

And by answering these questions you will be helping YOU and helping ME :)

I will answer you directly and/ or your questions may be the topic of an future insider news.

BONUS -  For everyone who replies, you will also get a FREE
Your Best Look Express.

1) When I open my closet, I think _____________.

2) What type of event/activity (everyday or special occasion) gives you the hardest time to get dressed for?

3) What is your biggest wardrobe issue?

4) If you had the opportunity to ask a stylist one question, what would it be?

That is it.
Not so bad, right?

Did I miss anything? Feel free to write me back with another question that didn't fit into my survey.

I am looking forward to helping you to feel empowered in your Spring wardrobe.

But you don't have to wait till Spring. Need help now? Contact me :)

I have a confession...

Diane Pollack

Well before I flat out tell you, I would like to start with a related client story.

One day I was going through my client Marla’s coat closet and she pulled out a fabulous leopard raincoat and said “I love this coat, it makes me feel like a million bucks.” I asked her how often she wore it, and she said “not very often.” My reply was “why not? Don’t you want to feel like a million bucks all the time, or at least more often?”

Further, you don’t only want to own one “million dollar coat”. The goal is that all, or almost all of the coats in your closet will make you feel that way. And from there, it is not only about coats, but to create a wardrobe that makes you feel that empowered!!!

No, I am not recommending that you immediately dump the bulk of your closet all at once, and that is not where I am going with this story.

So, here is my story.
(BTW - It’s a total coincidence that they are both regarding coats; the coat is symbolic of any piece in your wardrobe that makes you feel like a million bucks.)

You see, I had a coat in my closet that I have been on the fence about for a few seasons. It was truly a fun and unique coat that definitely served a specific purpose in my wardrobe (long, neutral and winter weight).

Because I felt the coat needed more umph, I added my own belt to make it cooler and more stylized. Yet, despite the fact that I really did like the coat and got a few compliments on it, it was not making me feel like a million bucks.

OK, so now is the confession part of the story.

75 Belted, embroidered coat with fur trim, gold bag.jpg

Most of you know that I have an ebook “How to Stop Closet Overwhelm & Actually Have Something to Wear”, which gives advice on how you can feel good about getting rid of things that you are on the fence about.

In my ebook, I reference donating the piece you are on the fence about to an organization that helps underprivileged women get back on their feet and obtain jobs they so desperately need:

If you have that extra blazer hanging in your closet amongst the slew of other blazers you own and you're sort of on the fence about it, wouldn't it feel great to donate that to a woman who would cherish it? You might help her get the job she really needs and improve her life.

So one day, I finally took my own advice and walked that coat over to donate. About a month or two later, I opened my closet and realized that I wasn’t really missing the coat and although it did fit specific needs, I was able to find and utilize other coats that did make me feel like a million bucks until I find that “million dollar replacement.”

It then made me think, I am pretty sure that there is a woman walking around New York in my old coat and not only is she warm, but I am also willing to bet that she feels like a million bucks in it. :) .

How To Get Bang for Your Buck

Diane Pollack

Recently I was fortunate to do a collaboration project with Hipsilver. They challenged me to take a simple black dress that they sell and create outfits for multiple occasions.

Of course I was up for the project and just love to accessorize!

Prior to shooting the video, I rummaged through our volunteer’s closets to utilize what she already owned to create these looks.

Here is an excerpt from their blog.

"Ever feel you wear the same suit of clothes every single day? Ever wonder if you’ve made the most of your wardrobe? At HipSilver, we pondered how to make the best of a single dress. To this end, we enlisted the aid of Diane Pollack of Stylempower fame to show us how to make the most of our HipSilver closets....

...Diane did not disappoint. She mixed and matched the simple, black dress with various HipSilver accessories "


Below you will find the full video. For the full write-up and the video broken down into mini videos, you can go HERE.

Opening Party

Diane Pollack

Last week, my husband told me that he got an invitation to an opening party for a restaurant. He was not able to make it and suggested I invite a friend.

The event was the following evening and he noted to me that the invitation said cocktail attire. Now I always love a good event to have an excuse to dress up for, so I was excited. (I am not going to kid you, I also love the free drinks and food).

I thought about the options in my closet and decided on a one sleeve, off the shoulder black top with a silver sequin decorated black skirt.

STYLIST TIP #1 - Try to always have something in your closet for a last minute invite to an event.

STYLIST TIP #2 - If you don’t, don’t panic. A basic, dress, jumpsuit or even separates that you may wear to work, can be jazzed up. Black is usually a safe bet. Here is where accessories are key. Pull out those fancy shoes, jewelry and/or bag and make day-wear festive.

I met my friend that evening to go to the event and noticed that she was wearing what I would call office casual attire.

Our outfits were drastically different.

I said that I thought that the invite said “cocktail attire” and she remembers something like “dress well”. UH-OH!

As we traveled downtown, we tried to open the invite on our phones and were not able to do so.

Who was going to be dressed properly and who was not?

Dia+party.jpg

It turns out, the invite did say cocktail attire, which frankly, I too might not have noticed, had my husband not mentioned it when passing off the invite to me.

My friend was not wrong either as she had seen at the end of the note, that the sender had written “dress well”. Turns out, that was just his sign off and it would be as if I had written “stay empowered” or something similar.

As the crowd started to fill in, one thing became apparent, there were people in cocktail attire and people who were a lot more casual like my friend.

STYLIST TIP #3 - No matter where you go, there is always a range of appropriate attire. Just don’t go outside that range and whatever you wear should be fine.

STYLIST TIP #4 - This event was not a traditional event such as a wedding or business related cocktail party. Therefore, you have even more range to be creative with your attire. Wear that jumpsuit or fun piece of jewelry that you are never quite sure when to wear it.

STYLIST TIP #5 - Whatever you put on, make sure you feel great in it. “Stay empowered!”

Need help with your next event outfit? Contact me and I am happy to help.

FUR- Real

Diane Pollack

Back in the day, a fur coat was a woman’s fashion staple - both luxurious and warm. But many years ago, we were made aware of how many animals it took to face a cruel death in order for people to stroll around in these fancy coats.

Remember when PETA started throwing red paint on them?

We are now even more aware, and many people consciously choose not to wear fur for these reasons.

Very recently, many of the top luxury brands (Gucci, Burberry, Channel, Versace, Chole and many more) have made a commitment to go fur-free.

Even cities are taking a stand; Los Angeles is now the largest city taking steps to ban fur.

Fortunately, we now have technology to create beautiful looking faux furs. Some are hard to distinguish the fake from the real and it has become perfectly acceptable and even trendy to wear fun faux furs of varies colors and patterns.

As you can imagine, this is bad news for the fur industry and their livelihood. They have created an entire marketing campaign that suggests that real fur is better than fake fur.

Wait What?

Read on to hear their surprising twist on the controversy.

The Real Fur campaign as seen in Women’s Wear Daily

The Real Fur campaign as seen in Women’s Wear Daily

Fur advocates say that in this fast fashion world, inexpensive faux fur is used for trendy items and quickly disposed of when that trend is over..

What happens then?

The faux fur is not Eco-friendly, it is made of plastic materials that clogs up land-fills.

Fur proponents state that fur items can be cherished family heirlooms, passed on from generations (sometime re-worked and updated).

When real fur is disposed of, it is totally bio-degradable. One real fur advocate, had this to say in Women’s Wear Daily: Fur is the “ultimate free-range, organic and locally sourced clothing material,”

Real fur advocates have launched multiple campaigns, including the ones pictured. Their hashtags: #GETREAL #SHOPNATURAL

Furthermore government regulations are getting stricter to monitor and oversee the supply chain of fur for transparency. New regulations are being enforced regarding the treatment and slaughter of fur providing animals.

Personally, I think they just need to work on bio-degradable faux fur which would then make the fur industry’s point mute.

So I am curious to hear from you.

What do you think? What would you choose?

Is existing fur (from a thrift shop or hand-me-down) acceptable, but new fur purchase not?

What about shearing? What about leather?

The campaign for real fur as seen in Women’s Wear Daily

The campaign for real fur as seen in Women’s Wear Daily

Style Goals 2019

Diane Pollack

Well as they say “New Year, New You”. 

What are your goals and resolutions for the new year?

I know that most of us come up with one big one or perhaps a long list. Many of them take planning and hard work to achieve. Often we “fall off the horse” and sometimes we get back again or sometimes we fall short of our goals.

I would like to make your style goals easy!.

Virtually no time and no money. So here you go; my quick and easy assessment to set the foundation for a better wardrobe. Let's get started.

1) Think about your favorite items that you love to wear and always feel great in. Try to identify what it is about these pieces that you love. Is it the color? Is it flattering? If so, what specifically makes it so flattering?

      A) Don’t let these items sit in your closet. Wear them as much as you can and feel amazing/empowered when you do.

      B) When shopping look for items that are similar color or shape that you will also love to wear. Be careful not to be redundant, this is a common mistake that wastes money.

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2) Now a daily task that will take you no time at all. While you are in the shower, brushing your teeth, journaling or any other daily activity where your mind is free, think about what you wore that day (or the day before) and how did you feel in that outfit.

A) YOU LOVED IT! - take a picture for future reference (and go back to point #1 and identify why and wear it often)

B) You are on the fence…Was it just an OK outfit?

a) Does it serve a purpose? Hold on to it, until you find something better to serve that purpose.

b) Was it nice pieces but you didn’t style it well? Wrong shoes? Need a belt? Try new styling options.

TEST - What if you ran into an Ex or an old schoolmate you hadn’t seen in years. This is the snapshot that they are seeing you in. How do you feel? If you do not feel amazing, maybe this will convince you to discard or replace the outfit. The possibilities of this happening are real. So don’t regret having looked better.

C) You did not feel good, are over this outfit and don’t really need it as you have so much better. - GIVE IT AWAY!.

That was easy. - little to no time invested and perhaps no money.

This is your first self-analysis test for the new year. Repeat as many times as needed with each outfit.

Want to take it further? Contact me for personalized help.

Also, don’t miss my Buy-one-get-one-get-one Closet Rejuvenation deal with a friend.

It is 50% off for both of you.

If you grab a friend and each sign up for a closet rejuvenation, then it is buy-one-get-one-free or essentially 50% off of regular pricing for both of you. This is the only time I have ever offered a BOGO deal, so contact me to get yours now!


Would You be Fooled!

Diane Pollack

Did you hear the one about…actually this is a true story that happened last week.

Payless shoes opened a pop-up shop in a California mall and invited influencers to attend. They called the brand Palessi, gave the pop-up an upscale presentation, created a real website and put a high price tag on their very inexpensive shoes.

So what do you think happened?

Those suckers fell for it!

They thought that the shoes looked elegant and sophisticated and were happy to shell out hundreds of dollars for shoes that sell for $20.

Crazy right?!!!

What does this say about our culture? Our perception?

Do you really “get what you pay for”?

Well personally, I have a lot of thoughts on this topic…

Cnn.com

Cnn.com

I am the queen of finding inexpensive items that look really expensive. And how do I know this? Because I get numerous compliments on these items and often chuckle to myself about my little secret; how affordable this piece was and yet, it stands out enough to be complimented.

Caution - for those without a keen eye, this kind of work is better left to the experts.

That is one side of the story. Sometimes you do get what you pay for in regard to quality and elegance.

I have seen the product that Payless generally carries and it is few and far between to find a gem that would stand out like this. So my thought here is, “shame on the influencers for being lured by a nicely branded store and the price tags that hang on it”.

But before I get too judgmental, I must add that I have not seen the specific items that were in this pop-up and if Payless has re-branded and up-leveled their look, well then see ya… gotta go shoe shopping now!

So what does this little experiment prove?

1) You don’t have to spend a lot of money to look good (and I could have told you that).

2) Branding and presentation can alter your perceived quality of an item.

3) Don’t get fooled by thinking something is better because the price tag is higher. Sometimes it is, but don’t just pay more for a brand or label.

For the full article and short video check it out HERE.

Oh No! Did You Ruin it?

Diane Pollack

I  hope you had an amazing Thanksgiving holiday and still fit into your clothes.

I was busy traveling and enjoying New Mexico, so I didn't have my usual time to sit down and write you some great new content. 

However, I realized that tv shows have re-runs all the time, why can't I?

Either, you enjoyed the show so much that you want to watch it again, you know you enjoyed it but can't remember exactly what happened or you missed that episode or are a new viewer. Same concept applies here, right?

I don't want you to forget about my "show" so I am popping in with a few helpful tips to keep your wardrobe sparkly for the holidays and fresh for 2019,



1) Clean your metals. Beer cleans gold, ketchup cleans silver.

2) Makeup stain on your clothes? Use baby wipes.

3) 409 removes stains from clothes like wine, makeup and grease.

colorful paintbrush.jpg

4) Got salt stains on your boots? Remove with 1/2 water & 1/2 Vinegar solution.

5) Lingering odors - try vodka & water.

6) Nasty deodorant marks on your clothes - wipe with the foam of a hanger.

7) Got your leather stained with grease or oil? Try some baby powder.

What does the rest of your holiday season look like?
Need to shop your wardrobe for party attire?
Need to know how to take your outfit from office to holiday event?
Other wardrobe issues?

 Let STYLEMPOWER help you.
contact me today!

What are you afraid of?

Diane Pollack

I hear comments all the time like “you provide such a valuable service” and “I often struggle with what to wear for xxx”.

Sorry for your struggles, but that is exactly what I am here to help you with. So just ask for help. (Wait, isn’t struggling for asking for help a guy thing? LOL)

Although your concerns are valid, they are actually counter-intuitive and may be stopping you from achieving a stress-free and empowered relationship with your wardrobe.

 Concern #1

“My closet is a very personal space”, “It is a mess” or “I don’t have fancy labels”.

Whatever your exact reasoning, you feel like you will be judged.

 No judgment, I promise!

I have seen it all and whatever you have is probably not the worst thing I have seen.

If you go through my closet, it is not about fancy labels either.

And honestly, I am secretly happy when my clients aren’t totally organized, not only do I enjoy the organizational process, but the results for my clients are even more pronounced and their closet is transformed into it’s potential.

Death_to_stock_photography_Wake_Up_5.jpg

Concern #2

“Maybe Diane won’t get my style”. Whether it is because my personal style is very different than yours or because you are tall and I am short, or you have extra curves in a certain area – have no fear, I get you.

Let me remind you, or perhaps you didn’t know, I spent the bulk of my career as a clothing designer. Most of the product that I designed was for woman whose tastes were nothing like mine.

Understanding other women’s tastes is essential as a stylist. And that by the way, is why you may have a friend with very good tastes, but when you go shopping with them or ask them for wardrobe advise, they may be seeing it through the filter of their own personal tastes and not what is right for you.

Oh and by the way, did you notice my tagline? “Style for your lifestyle”.

Concern #3

And now we come to the money part…

Where you might wonder is it too much, is it necessary and/ or is it worth it?

Not only is it worth it, but you may end up actually saving money. 

What????

If you are one of those people who

  • Buys items of clothing and never take the tags off

  • Buys clothing that you like, but have no idea how to wear them, so you don’t

  • Buys items that you decide later you don’t really like so you never wear them

Then investing in a stylist will definitely save you money.

If you are one of those people who

  • Randomly goes out shopping with no clear vision of your wardrobe needs

  • Buys things because they are a bargain (although it might have been cheaper to not buy it at all)

  • Tends to buy multiple versions of the same items that serve the same purpose (totally unnecessary)

Then investing in a stylist will help you create a targeted shopping list so that you don’t waste money on these mistakes again. 

Finally, what about the values of your time and the feeling of confidence and empowerment with the right items that could help you succeed in other areas of your life?

 Isn’t that the best investment of all?

Stop making excuses. Contact me to make this the year where you wardrobe is finally working for YOU.

 

The other 1 %

Diane Pollack

We all know that there are some old-school fashion rules that no longer apply.

  • White after Labor Day

  • No suede in spring and summer

  • Matching your bag to your shoes

  • Not mixing metals (OK, I am still a fan of wearing 1 metal)

No more rules - What I prefer are guidelines

There are many guidelines I recommend to my clients (and I adhere to myself) for what I think is a more stylized look. They help keep proportions, don’t compete with other items you are wearing and can simply be the touches that make an outfit look substantially better.

Oh sorry, are you asking for those tips?  Because that is not really the focus of this piece. However, if I have whet your appetite, you may want to check out   How to Style a difficult item in 5 easy steps.

So what do we think of the picture below?

Image from The Zoe Report

Image from The Zoe Report

Did I hear “Yuk” to a few things going on here? And yet she is a fashionista. All of the “Yuk” is intentional !!!

So who should go by these guidelines and who can break them and still look fabulous?

Sometimes I call this the “Kate Middleton” effect. So many people are enamored by her style, but if you saw some of those items on a hanger or even tried them on yourself, would they look great?


Probably not. So getting over the fact that she is “royalty,” the other helpful elements are that she is young and pretty with a good figure. She carries clothing well and can get away with a lot more than the rest of us.

I know another woman who fits under the young, pretty and good figure category and always seems to look great. On closer look, if I check out her outfit, I think “why would she ever choose to wear those shoes with that dress” and “her necklace is the wrong color and competing with her neckline” and yet I have to agree, she is someone who can just get away with it and looks great despite that.

Another example is a beautiful woman I used to know. One day she shows up wearing Timerlands - yes, those construction boots and somehow she still oozed sexy.

Don’t get me wrong. Do I think you need to be young, pretty and have a good figure to be able to pull off tricky outfit choices. Not necessarily, although it doesn’t hurt. Also, note I did not use the word tall in any of my examples (although Kate Middleton is indeed tall).

So here is the thing - these ladies are part of the other 1% (in fashion), Who knows, maybe it is 2 or 5%, but nonetheless, a very small percentage of people who ooze style and can get away with some things that would look pretty terrible on the rest of us :(


If you would like to find out more about my guidelines and what I would suggest for you personally, email me to discuss.

6 plus Stylist Tips for this falls trends

Diane Pollack

Last time, I presented you with the some of the top trends for fall. It is up to you to decide which ones will work for you and which ones you will take a pass on.

BUT THERE IS MORE TO IT THAN THAT.
Maybe you like the trend but are not quite sure how to wear it or what to wear it with.

Or maybe you don’t like the trend. I am sure there are many of them that you might have said “I am too old or it is too bold”, “been there, done that” or simply “no thanks”.

And that is all fine.


However, I wanted to give you some more tips, information and suggestions for a few of them and then you might say “Oh, I never thought to wear it like that” or “that seems doable”. You may still say “no thanks” and that is okay too :)

WESTERN

Western details are great, you may want to invest in some cowboy boots that you can wear with jeans and can also be worn back to your new prairie skirt or dress.

Although one of my main style tips is to dress and accessorize with the theme in mind, in this case western, here is what I CAUTION you about.

Image from InStyle Magazine

Image from InStyle Magazine

Stylist Tip #1 -Going overboard on a theme. Too many western details can end up looking costume-y. But hey, you can wear it at the end of the month - LOL

ANIMAL

Stylist Tip #2 - Animal prints never really go out of style. Some years they are just more in then others and this year that is the case. So don’t give away animal printed items unless the styling is dated or they are in crappy shape.

Stylist Tip #3 -A leopard print always looks nice with a pop of bright color especially red or orange. So if the print is on your bag, try the colored accent in a shoe or vice versa. Got a leopard coat? Maybe wear the accent in a brightly colored sweater.

Stylist Tip #4 - Some consider leopard a neutral, although it can mix with other patterns quite well, if you are are not a master of mixing, proceed with caution.

‘80s

One of the overriding themes I see here is volume and frankly it scares me. Anybody experience trying on an old coat from the ‘80s and feeling like, “how did I ever wear this, it looks 3 sizes too big?” And the problem here is with all that volume one could look like they have put on 10 lbs without having the pleasure of indulging in that brownie a la mode.

The good news is that I think that there are new ways to wear some of it. So if you choose that big shouldered top, I am happy to say that currently the baggy pleated pants you may have worn with it are not trending now.

Stylist Tip #5 - Wear skinny bottoms back to the big shouldered top for better proportion.

Do Neons scare you? Is this is where you are saying “I am too old and it is too bold.?’ Let me suggest some more manageable ways to wear it.

Stylist Tip #6a -Wear it as a fun accessory like in a small leather good, even a coin purse or phone case.

Stylist Tip #6b -Perhaps it is an accent color in a print.

Stylist Tip #6c - Wear it as an underpinning to your outfit: peaking out at the neck, cuffs or hem of a jacket or sweater.

Stylist Tip #6d - Pair back to grey for a more sophisticated and toned down look.

Stylist Tip #6e - And finally, probably the easiest way to wear neon is in your workout wear. That energetic color may even energize you.

Not ready for fall yet? Let me help you with that.



Trending for Fall

Diane Pollack

Have you started Fall shopping yet?

The season is just at that point where warmer clothes are starting to look cozy. As your personal wardrobe consultant, I would be remiss if I did not point out to you some of the key trends for Fall.

No, this does not mean that you should go out and buy all the new trends; I don't believe in that and don’t plan to buy them all either.

This will make you aware of the latest trends and you decide if you like them. As I always say, “trends are suggestions and not mandates.”

So with that, I have to say that this season really came on strong with so many new trends.

This is also not to say that some of your things from past seasons are not still in style.

If you would like to find out when trends go out of style you can read about that HERE.

Now, what is new?

What has been interesting to me, in addition to what feels like a large number of new trends this season, is that many seem to fit into four main categories.

What are they?

WESTERN

We have been seeing fringe for a few seasons, and now we're adding prairie skirts, * prairie dresses and cowboy boots to the western look. We are seeing traditional style cowboy boots, ankle versions and new creative takes on the cowboy boot.

* Note the scarf print and handkerchief hem on this dress, which are two additional trends. Many of the other prairie skirts and dresses include lots of tiered skirts.

Altazurra on Net-a-porter

Altazurra on Net-a-porter

ANIMAL

Snakeskin looks are everywhere, especially on accessories like bags and boots.

The hottest animal print is the leopard. Be spot on with these fun prints on blouses, skirts, shoes, coats, scarves and more.

Furry coats, faux furs in an array of colors, “teddy bear” coats and shearlings.

Max Mara “Teddy Bear” style coat

Max Mara “Teddy Bear” style coat

THE '80s

This is a huge category. Oversized everything, big poufy sleeves (think Lady Di’s wedding dress), shiny bling, neon and even acid washed jeans.

Magda Butrym dress

Magda Butrym dress

CHECKS AND PLAIDS

So if you are more classic than some of the '80s trends or perhaps feel like “been there done that,” here is a category that may seem more manageable to you. We are talking glen plaids, checks and standard tartan plaids, but of course more unique versions and non-traditional colors are also added to the mix.

Simonetta Ravizza in Bergdorf catalog

Simonetta Ravizza in Bergdorf catalog

As I mentioned before, many items from past seasons continue to trend. Here I would include many '70s trends such as bell bottoms, bold stripes, peasant blouses, prints and new this season slouchy boots.

No that is not even everything, but enough to put you in the know and decide from there, which trends you would like to incorporate into your personal style, if any…..

Need help? That's what I'm here for! Contact me to set up a consultation to discuss your personal needs.

Black

Diane Pollack

During fashion week, I went to 2  panel presentations put on by Women's Wear Daily about upcoming trends. As the moderators and panelists walked, out the first thing that struck me was that all were wearing black head-to-toe.  

As they started to show slides of the upcoming trends; bold stripes, tie-die and neon, to name just a few, the irony was really blatant.

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The following week, I was a guest on a radio show where one of the hostesses was wearing head-to-toe black and the other was wearing a print which was black and grey. I showed up in a neon yellow top, which was well noted and the conversation started about why people, especially in New York, wear all black.

Coincidentally, Berdorf Goodman currently has a curated area (including the window displays on 5th avenue) dedicated to all things black and entitled NOIR.

So I decided to discuss dressing in black as the topic of this month's insider news.

What does black stand for?

Photo inside NOIR AT Bergdorf Goodman

Photo inside NOIR AT Bergdorf Goodman

 - Edgy

- Eternally stylish

- Sexy

- No-brainer chic

- Blending in

- Some may say it goes with everything, - my thoughts on that.

I do think that most of the New York obsession with black, especially in the fashion industry, has to do with the first two. And after visiting the NOIR curation at Bergdorf's, sexy should also be added to the list.

Well I am a fashion person, how come you will rarely ever see me wearing all black?

Although I admire the chicness when others wear it, for me it would be like a funeral for fashion. I so much enjoy deciding what my outfits will be everyday and get uplifted by color and print. Wearing head-to-toe black would be the no-brainer for me, which would suck the joy out of my love of styling.

So you won't find me as one of the fashion types in all black. I am the one following those trends that the panel reported on and joyfully strutting the ones that I choose to work for me.

But this is not an either/or choice. You may choose to wear a colorful outfit on one day and all black on another.

No commitment necessary.

Be you and do what works for you!