Ways to Wear it Now & Later

It’s not too early to start shopping for fall – the Nordstrom Anniversary sale is on after all. But since there are certainly still steamy days ahead, look for pieces that you can wear during the dog days and into next season. I’ve been scouring the world wide web and styled my favorite picks for the hot summer and brisk fall. It’s borderline agonizing to wait to wear your awesome new clothes so have fun integrating them into your wardrobe now.

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We Want Marant

H&M designer collaborations always have low-budget style fiends in fits when the collections are inevitably out of stock in mere minutes; we saw it with Lanvin in 2010 and again with Versace in 2011. The pieces are highly covetable and marvelously on trend. It only makes sense then that the designer whose influence permeates High Street fashion – hello! she invented the sneaker-wedge – teams up with the fast-fashion megastore next. I’m talking Isabel Marant, French designer extraordinaire. Celebrities and off-duty models love her urban-bohemian style that’s laden with embellishment and fit to flatter. It’s not even really summer yet, but I’m already raring for November when the collection will hit H&M. In the meantime one can only speculate what Marant might have in store. Assuming she delivers in her typical French-cool manner, I’ll be first in line.

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Leopards and pythons and tigers. Oh my!

It’s homecoming week here at Drake University. Months ago a group of students began the arduous task of planning the festivities for an unenthusiastic student body. Last year the week of events was designed around a Disney theme, but this year we got “Wild about Drake,” a jungle theme.

A fashion forecaster must have pitched that idea because no trend is bigger this fall than animal prints. As far as I’m concerned animal print is never out, but the Fall 2012 RTW runway shows were particularly infected with jungle fever. The best example may be Roberto Cavalli’s Just Cavalli which delivered a heavy dose of leopard at New York Fashion Week in February.

Since then, nature has taken its course and the feisty animal print trend has trickled down into more accessible fashion markets and moved beyond ordinary leopard print. J. Crew is all about the look and their current collection is peppered with leopard printed blouses and trousers and exotic python selections. At $1800, their python skin pencil skirt won’t become a staple of the everygirl, but for the few bold women who splurge on it this season it’s bound to make a statement.

The leopard print look isn’t as fresh as python, but the pieces hitting stores this season are updated perfectly. There is a misconception that leopard print ought to be reserved for twenty-somethings at the club. False. Leopard print should be in every wardrobe. It’s nature’s neutral and in the right amount it pulls any outfit together. Weary consumers should at least pick up a pair of leopard print shoes or a belt because you can literally wear them with anything. More daring style mavens should wear the trend my favorite way, in a tailored pair of trousers or jacket.

Another fun trend that isn’t nearly so extreme are the literal “animal prints” popping up everywhere from ZARA to Forever 21. Knit sweaters with critters on the front are one popular way to rock the look. They made a splash last fall and winter and are back again for round two.

My favorite adaptation of the classic animal print has got to be prints with animals all over them. A slew of these fun textiles can be found in stores, often in the form of silk blouses, and they are easy to incorporate into your closet. If you hunt hard enough you can find pretty much any animal print your heart desires. As a Drake Bulldog, I love the bulldog print pants pictured above. They would take the “Wild about Drake” homecoming theme to an entirely different level.

 

Finally, a shout out to my loyal readers! Thanks again for the awesome boots Aunt Stephanie!

(Well received) British Invasion

Anglophiles and British fashion fans have long loved the U.K.’s most hip chain brand, TOPSHOP.  For years the clothing, famous for its brave approach to current trends, was the envy of us Americans and sported stateside only by lucky jet-setting Hollywood starlets.

Eventually the brand hopped the pond, but American fans still had to make a pilgrimage to New York, Chicago or Las Vegas to shop the line in-store. But rejoice! This past week the clothing made its debut in select Nordstrom stores across the country making TOPSHOP more accessible than ever before.

The affordable offerings include some of the brand’s best sellers in addition to limited edition pieces that will no doubt be snagged up in short order. The department store is also carrying a full line of shoes and accessories, maternity wear, and TOPMAN products for the gentlemen.

The pieces, which are conveniently available online from Nordstrom too, are super on trend for the fall. There are tons of innovative prints, studded tops, chunky sweaters, and tailored tops and bottoms.

So plan a spree at Nordstrom and make off with some of these awesome pieces. Bonus points if you master an English accent to accessorize your new threads.