We’ve been talking about the “Rule of Three” - the idea of layering pieces to create a more cohesive, sophisticated look - over here on the blog lately. There’s been lots of discussion happening on facebook about it, and apparently it has struck a chord of inspiration with some of our favorite readers. Fabulous. Frilling!
My darling friend Ali gave herself a challenge to help her step up her game a bit in the style department. She decided that for 3 days she’d follow the Rule of Three. I asked her about her experience and here’s what she said:
I’m fashionally challenged. So after Fran explained the “three layer rule,” we made it homework: three days of three layers in one week. To start, I went thrifting and found a few new pieces that I could easily layer with items I already own:
Day One: I picked the sky-blue cardigan, layering it over an favorite T and adding the new necklace. I wasn’t convinced it was a great outfit, but I knew I’d made a start. I took my photo–but I wasn’t happy about it.
Day Two: I picked the teal cardigan, which I had fallen in love with. I poked around on the LOFT website, looking for how their models wore their cardigans. I noticed most of the “loud” cardigans were paired with neutral tops, so I imitated that. A beaded necklace functioned as my third layer. I felt confident in my choices and let my husband snap a cute pic for me.
Day Three: I faced a two-outfit day. For work, I picked the black-and-white striped tee. Fran had challenged me to use a scarf as my third layer rather than a necklace, so I added a black cardigan and a hot pink scarf. I paired the top with a flirty skirt instead of my uniform pants–and I felt like a movie star.
For after-work, I knew I’d be attending a formal awards banquet. I chose a print top with a cami and a complementary necklace, paired with a white skirt and metallic wedges.
How does it feel, now that it’s done? As someone who usually finds shopping and dressing to be painfully difficult, the three-layer challenge was liberating. My confidence grew exponentially. And, as I stood in my closet the night before the final challenge day, putting together my outfits was actually fun. Frillingly so.
There are so many things I love about this. One is that Ali was about to make the Rule work for her in her daily life fairly easily. Two is that she went shopping with a purpose, looking for specific pieces to work with and Frill up her existing wardrobe. Three, that Ali embraced some bright, fun colors. And four, that she said her outfit made her feel like a movie star. And that, folks, is where it’s at.
Ali, You FRILL us!
PS: Ali, your next challenge is to remix those cardigans into other outfits.
PPS: Stay tuned for the next installment of our cardigan series, hopefully later this week!
Today I’m FRILLED to share a peek at Amber’s fun maternity style. You may remember her from her Frilling crochet creations. Well, now she’s sporting a cute bob and a baby bump. Amber has a classic style and always looks polished, even at 36 weeks preggo!. This is baby #3 for Amber, so she’s got some experience in the maternity wear department.
These green maternity cords are comfy and cute paired with stripes, a chartreuse cardi, and a chunky seafoam-green beaded bangle. I think that mix of greens is so unexpected and interesting; and stripes are always the right pattern. I never see a stripe I don’t like. Leopard flats add more pattern interest.
This maternity shirtdress is a hardworking piece; neutral in color, very versatile for many occasions and very multi-seasonal. She’s wearing it for winter here (even though it was like 80 degrees here when we took these photos) with black tights, boots, and a warm cardi; but it would be just as nice with gladiator sandals and loads of shimmery gold jewelry. (For spring I’d add a bright patterned cardigan to liven up the neutral olive, and exchange the sash for a fun skinny belt; but that’s just me.) In fact, this is the second pregnancy this dress has taken Amber through, so it has proved its worth.
dress: Motherhood / cardi: Gap / leggings: Ross / boots: JC Peney
For a more dressy occasion, Amber picked up this sparkly non-maternity dress at Ross. I love finding non-maternity pieces that work for maternity. The gathered v-neck will even be nursing friendly. A dress like this is a find, my friends. Until you start looking, you don’t know how hard it is to find dresses that work for nursing, much less nursing + maternity + beyond.
In her own words:
How would you describe your personal style? “Elegant and classic but fun.”
What’s your shopping M.O.? : “Price and versatility, practicality, trendiness, all have a place, but in that order. At the same time, I decided a while back that I wouldn’t buy something just because it is priced right and practical, I have to LOVE it too.”
What are your favorite accessories? “Earrings and bracelets. necklaces are too tempting for the littles to grab and…I love scarves!”
Where do you go for fashion inspiration? “I like to read blogs (like yours!) and window shop. That’s where I see what’s “in” and typically decide whether or not I like it. But I don’t consider myself uber-trendy regardless because that would be less practical. I usually stick to a few trendy pieces in the wardrobe for fun and stick with classics (or what I won’t tire of, at least) for the rest.”
Quality or Quantity? “Quality. It’s more practical. And more classy.”
Anything else you’d like to say, just for frills? “Many women in the last month of pregnancy feel like a whale, walk like a penguin, and don’t feel attractive at all, but I say we should flaunt those beautiful bellies in tasteful style!”
Amber, You FRILL us!
Gals: if you’d like to nominate someone as a Frilling Fashionista, send us an email with photos at youfrillme at gmail dot com. We love featuring real-life women who have a unique sense of style and are Frilling it up in their everyday lives
My friends, this is Tracee.
Cousin Tracee. Cousin Tracee came for a visit over the holidays and let me photograph her in the Frilling outfit she was wearing; although, she’s Frilling every time I see her — this is just a sample of her Frillingness. She’s actually Jordan’s cousin, but I claim her. She’s mine, I tell you! I mean, wouldn’t you want to be related to someone so chic? Not only does she have great taste, but she also lives in Brooklyn (NY!) and works for this ministry organization, and is overall a swell gal. Which makes her a Triple Frill.
The outfit is pretty basic in concept and very wearable: jeans, boots, top, cardigan — the ultimate timeless fall/winter uniform. It’s the details that are so pretty and interesting and thoughtful, and, I think, the hallmark of Tracee’s style. Starting with the jeans, which are both printed and burgundy, two of this season’s best trends. They’re also skinny-straight (I like JCrew’s “Matchstick” description for this style), and cropped perfectly above the boot at the ankle.
Moving on to the long cardigan, also burgundy for a monochromatic palette; and the black silky hip-length top. The top actually has a really nice boxy shape that I didn’t capture in the photos…
Grounding the look with a pair of killer low-heeled boots… (Burgundy denim + cognac leather = divine. )
And topped with pitch-perfect, thoughtfully chosen accessories: an abstract floral scarf, dangly bow-tie earrings, a chunky statement ring, an interesting mixed-metal necklace, and a menswear watch.
Jeans: The Loft / Top: JC Penney / Cardigan: Target / Boots: Chelsea Crew / Ring: Nordstrom Rack / Watch: Fossil / Necklace: Birdhouse Jewelry / Scarf: Urban Outfitters
Tracee had this to say…
“I love shopping, but I also love finding a bargain. I will splurge on shoes if needed, they must be cute and comfy…I live in NYC and I am always on my feet! I also see a lot of expressions of style throughout this city — some I like, some I don’t! While I have always loved clothes and shoes, I have come to appreciate fashion even more while living in new york. For a woman who enjoys shopping, it becomes very difficult living in NYC on a budget, since there are lots of clothes to choose from and always somewhere to find them.”
On her personal style:
“If I see something I really like, I will make it work for me. I am relatively aware of trends, but don’t just dress by them. I love shoes, so I often pick the shoes first and then build around them. I love skinny jeans or jeggings and cardigans. I’m also a fan of dresses, but it’s winter right now and I can’t imagine wearing one! I enjoy taking simple pieces and adding some flare. I love jewelry, but typically simple pieces. My style is sometimes described as a preppy hipster or prep with some flare.”
The thing about fashion on a budget is that you have to really think through what you’re going to spend your resources on and be intentional, which I think can make for a better overall wardrobe. At least it does for Tracee. I can’t decide on my favorite part of this outfit. It’s so well curated. I love everything. What’s your favorite piece?
Thanks Tracee! Your chic-ness Frills us!