• Check Mate, Gingham Pieces for Your Body Shape!

    May 05, 2016

    Happy Thursday, beauties!

    Today, I'm sharing different options for wearing the classic gingham print for your body shape! It's a print that can certainly be worn all year long, but it does have the perfect springtime/summer feel, doesn't it? I, for some reason, I associate it with picnics and southern summer style...perhaps I've watched too many movies or perhaps this may be true for you, too! Either way, I'm sharing my suggestions on how you could wear this print with confidence this season, because there is an option out there for everybody! So, let's get started with...

     

     

    SHOP THE SET!

    1 | 2 | 3 | 

    For the apple shape, I selected a small gingham printed blouse, since this shape is more voluptuous and wider on top, the smaller print will help prevent any additional volume to be added to the area, which would otherwise make the upper body appear larger. Instead, I selected a larger graphic for a pair of shorts, since this shape generally has naturally lean sculpted legs, it will draw attention to them, showing them off even more! Both the dress and skirt I selected are in a medium size of the print. Since the skirt is a bit on the shorter side, it will of course bring more attention to those fab legs. If you're not comfortable showing off this much leg, you can still go knee length because girl, those calves are everything! This is actually where the dress I selected falls, so if you love it, you could actually wear it as both a dress and skirt! Simply add a more fitted top over it and you instantly have a skirt! The reason this dress is flattering for this particular shape is that it has both a v-neck and thicker straps. This will help to visually narrow in the upper body, while flattering an ample chest.  

     

    SHOP THE SET!

    1 | 2 | 3 | 4

    Pear shapes on the other hand, have a relatively smaller upper body in comparison to the lower, so I've used the opposite styling strategy when selecting the pieces above. For the top, I selected an off the shoulder blouse with the print, which will visually widen the upper body, balancing out fuller hips. A top like this would be a perfect option if you'd be wearing a pair of white or colored jeans that can make your lower body appear fuller. Who says pear shapes can't wear white jeans?! For the pant and skirt, I went with smaller versions of the print to help visually slim the legs, since prints tend to add additional visual weight. I used this technique not because I'm suggesting you conceal your curves, but because prints can make you appear larger, which some of you may not want, so in this case, smaller prints are the way to go! I, lastly, selected a gingham dress that features a larger version of the print on top and smaller on the bottom, accompanied by fine pleats. Pleats are a huge trend this season, but I personally feel that they're timeless. When they are thin, they make the lower body appear leaner and you'll also appear visually taller as well, since it has a linear effect and vertical lines always add visual length, which if you remember, I mentioned in my More Pleats Please! post!  



    SHOP THE SET!

    1 | 2 | 3 | 4

    When it comes to the rectangular shape there are so many different options that can be experimented with! Like the hourglass, this shape is proportional in both the bust and hip area, having accompanying lean arms and legs. However, the waist line with the rectangular isn't as defined, which distinguishes the two; if one is desired, we can definitely create an emphasis there, like with these paper bag waist shorts! These kind of waistlines are perfect for creating the effect of a more defined waistline, since they gather in creating a cinched effect. Pretty cool, right?! A high waisted dramatically flared out midi skirt will also create the illusion of curves, since this style tapers out notably at the natural waist. When it comes to dresses, styles that have a stitched in waistline is another way to re-establish the waist and with the dress I selected you have both that option, as well as a ruffled bust. The ruffles on the bust will create dimension to the area, which would be a great option for those of you who may want to create that effect. Lastly, a shirt that offers a layered contrast would be a wonderful option for  visually "breaking up" the upper and lower portions of the body. Since the waistline isn't as defined for this shape, the body appears straight, hence the name rectangular. When wearing monochrome outfits, the lack of color distinction will over emphasize these features and so in that case, I'd suggest either layering a gingham shirt under a tee or work with one like the one above that does the layering for you, that way you have not only a pop of color, but print, too, to help break things up a bit! 

     


    SHOP THE SET!

    1 | 2 | 3 | 4 

    Last, but not least, we have the hourglass shape, who like I mentioned before is proportional on the top and bottom with a defined waistline and because this waistline is naturally defined, I suggest you maintain that curve with pieces that will draw attention to the waist! All of the pieces I've selected have one common feature and that's they all either have a wrap or stitched waist. What I love about the top is that you can wear a more sculpted trouser, such a cigarette or skinny, while still emphasizing the waist so effortlessly! You'll notice these shorts reappearing because they're flattering for this shape, too, and can be paired with either more fitted or looser style tops without concealing your curves!

    As always, I hope you found my style tips helpful for selecting the most flattering styles of gingham pieces for your body shape! As you've seen, there's options for everybody! Thanks so much for stopping by and I hope your day is as fabulous as YOU, dear friends

     

    XO, 

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  • Body Sculpting & Flattering Activewear!

    May 04, 2016


    GET THE LOOK(S)!

    LOOK 1: Sports Bra: c/o Zobha (HERE// Leggings: Calvin Klein Performance (similar ON SALE HERE// Sneakers: Nike (similar HERE)  LOOK 2: Tank: c/o Modern Luxe (similar HERE)  // Legging: c/o Marika (ON SALE HERE// Sneakers: same as in look 1

     

     

    Happy Hump Day, beautiful friends!

    I hope you're all having a wonderful week and a great start to your May so far! As a reader of The Style Contour, you know that this site is dedicated to body image empowerment and encouragement through the use of fashion and styling tips I share, that hopefully make you feel more confident in the bodies you're in and the clothing you wear. Today, I will be sharing with you two activewear brands that I feel you'd not only love, but feel both comfortable and confident in, Zobha and Marika. First, let me give you a brief background on my fitness journey. I've been working out for a total of 10 years, on average 4-5 days a week and have lost and kept off a total of 30lbs since then. I started my senior year of high school in preparation for prom and looking back, it was certainly one of the best decisions I've ever made in my life and because of that, fitness has become more than just working out, it's become a way of life for me. Since it's essentially become apart of who I am, as well as my love for fashion, it's been important for me to fuse the two and wear comfortable and inspiring, fashionable, activewear. I initially started out wearing oversized t-shirts and sweats because at the time, I had no clue what to wear! I quickly learned how uncomfortable it was trying to perform various exercises and cardio with so much extra fabric and material holding me back, so annoying! From then 'til now, I've experimented with a number of performance brands and styles that I've learned what to look for that will continue to keep me feeling confident while I perform my work outs, as well as feeling cute because who doesn't like to feel good in what they wear, regardless of where they are, right?! I believe it's equally important to feel good about what you're wearing in the gym because it really does help with boosting your self confidence and energy levels, too! 

    With all that said, I was invited to attend a press release event back in January for the brands I mentioned, Zobha and Marika, debuting their current collection. Both brands were new to me, so I had a lot of questions and trust me, I asked real questions women want to know that are either thinking about working out or who currently do. One of those questions was about cellulite and if either of these brands provided leggings that were sturdy, smoothed everything out and would hold it all together comfortably. As fit as I consider myself to be, I do have those little annoying lumps and bumps that come and go and I've had such bad experiences with brands that showed every flaw, which was further highlighted when performing certain workouts, as you could imagine...squats (you're really supposed to squeeze those glutes on your way up ;) It was explained to me that Marika does just that and I can attest for that because I've worn these leggings a number of times between January and now, so I can really give you my stamp of approval! They're extremely comfortable to perform all of your leg workouts in with confidence or any other activity you prefer doing for your workout. There's no other annoying feeling than trying to perform an exercise while having to frequently adjust your clothes, you'll either perform the exercise incorrectly or just stop because it's uncomfortable. 

    As for the sports bra, it's very comfortable and stylish, isn't it! I love all of the support, not that in my case I need any, haha, that is provided with the mesh overlay and adjustable straps in the back. The straps didn't bother me at all in the front, which I thought would, since they're right on the collar bone, neck area. The only thing I'd suggest if you decide to purchase it, is that you'd want to go up one size, it runs a bit small. Again, I didn't feel uncomfortable and since I have a smaller bust, I generally need an XS sports bra and in some cases, they're not small enough. However, if you have a larger bust, I think it would be a little too tight, so go up one size. I'd also suggest that you go for the pretty red color instead, if you'd be doing rigorous activities because the white will show the dirt. If, however, you'll be doing easy to moderate yoga or slow paced walking, than the white should be fine.

    I hope you liked the looks I created featuring my Zobha and Marika pieces! Definitely check out their sites because they have colorful, printed and minimal styles to suit everybody's style preference! Thanks so much for stopping by, my beautiful friends, and I hope your day is as amazing as YOU! 

     

    *This post is in collaboration with Zobha and Marika via Lipton Publicity, all opinions expressed are my own. 


    XO,

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  • Blast from the Past With the Platform!

    May 03, 2016

     

    SHOP THE SET!

    1 | 2 | 3 | 5


    Happy Tuesday, dear friends!

    A popular trend this season is the platform shoe, either it be in heels or sneakers, this '90s trend is popping up everywhere! If you're a '90s kid like me, these are almost synonymous with the Spice Girls and if you were a real fan, you of course had to have a pair or two! While I'm no longer a fan of the ultra sky high Baby & Ginger Spice style platform, I do love the more polished version as shown above in 13 and 5. I also love the more subtle take on the trend, as shown in #2 and the somewhat grungy vibe of 4, which I think is SO cool! I love when a trend is found in various forms, allowing for anyone who likes the overall vibe to experiment with them without having to sacrifice their own personal style; there's an option for everyone! 

    What I also like about the trend is that it adds height, while exuding power and confidence, I love bold pieces that speak for you! It's a shoe that can either be worn with a maxi and midi skirt or dress, which is especially great if you're petite and tend to shy away from either of those styes due to the fear of appearing even shorter. I personally love the idea of pairing #s 2 and 4 with skinny jeans or shorts and because of that, I feel they're perfect options for those of you who have more of a minimalistic style; they add that subtle touch of interest and trendiness to an overall outfit. 

    So, what's your thoughts on this trend? Do you feel it should stay in the '90s and never return or are you a fan? Let me know in the comment's section! Thanks so much for stopping by, my beautiful friends, and I hope your day is as wonderful as YOU!

     

    XO,

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  • Cool in Citron

    May 02, 2016


    GET THE LOOK!

    Blazer: Cynthia Rowley (similar HERE// Tank: Marshalls (similar ON SALE HERE)  // Jeans: New York & Company (HERE// Earrings: What Would V Wear Collection  // Clutch: Marshalls (similar ON SALE 64% OFF HERE)  // Shoes: Ralph Lauren (similar HERE)

     

     

    Happy first day of May, beauties!

    Can you believe that we're already at the start of May?! I know I can't! I just feel like time is going by so fast and instead of repeating it at the end of each week that flies by, I figured it'd be okay to say it at least at the start of every new month, haha! I hope you all had a great weekend and are feeling inspired to begin both a new month and week. I say make plans, but right them all in pencil! It's great to start a new month with plans and prospects, but let life unfold and you'll be happy you did...sometimes in the long run, let's be real!

    Anyway, for today's outfit, I combined a number of colors, all of which have one thing in common, which makes them blend together so perfectly; they all have cool undertones. This is one of the easiest ways to determine if colors would work well together when attempting to create an outfit. When creating an outfit, we will generally start off with one item and then add others to complete or finish off the look. If the main piece you want to work with has a cool undertone, which simply means it has a blue/grey/ash tint to it or would pair best with silver accents, then it would look great paired with pieces that have the same effects. For this look, I started with this citron green tank and then reached for this serenity blue blazer to add on top. I wasn't in the mood for a nude pump, so I went for these radiant orchid ones instead and finished the look with a basket woven clutch I purchased a few years ago at Marshalls; it adds that perfect springtime feel, doesn't it?! 

    I hope this post not only helped give you some ideas on how you could create a more colorful pairing in general, but some inspiration in styling the trendy color of the year, serenity blue! We most often see it paired with neutrals or with the rose quartz (blush pink) which is also the color of the year, but there really are other color options you can and should explore and I hope this look really showed that! You could of course just pair your serenity piece (light blue) with either of the two colors, it doesn't have to be with both, at least you have an idea as to how it would look paired together. Thanks so much for stopping by my dear and beautiful friends and I hope you have the most amazing start to your new month, cheers!

     

    XO,

    Read more »

  • How to Size up or Down for Your Perfect Fit!

    Apr 29, 2016

     

    GET THE LOOK!

    Jacket: Thrifted (similar ON SALE 60% HERE)  //  Tank: Cynthia Rowley (similar HERE// Jeans: The Limited // Purse: Michael Kors (similar ON SALE HERE// Heart pom pom: Marshalls // Shoes: Nine West (HERE// Lipstick: Milani (HERE)

     

     

    Happy Friday, beauties! 

    Today, I'll be sharing with you an easy trick I learned back when I worked for Ann Taylor Loft and that's how to select pieces in the opposite category of your height or frame! First, I want you to take a look at the tweed jacket I'm wearing. Would you believe that this 5'8 long armed girl is wearing a petite jacket?! Yes, this jacket is a 6P and you couldn't even tell by looking at the arm and waist length now could you? My husband and I were walking around a street fair a few years ago, where all the local boutiques had their clearance items hung on racks outside their shops. While walking by, my husband spotted this jacket (double brownies points) and wanted to gift it to me, but after looking at the size, he thought his hopes of making my day with this lovely jacket were done, until I explained to him what I had learned from working retail, as I tried on the jacket that fit perfectly! We all know how the story ends, since I'm wearing this lovely jacket today! Did you enjoy my little Cinderella story?! So dramatic, I know, haha! 

    So here's what you need to know. If you shop in the average section, which simply means average height, not size, then you'd go up roughly two sizes in petites for a comfortable and flattering fit. If, on the other hand, you are petite, generally speaking, you'd go down about two sizes, so the piece fits you comfortably. I remember those days when I'd be assisting clients who would fall in love with a specific piece from our collection and would be SO disappointed when it wasn't available in their size, especially when I would check the back and computer system to see if other locations had it to no avail. I don't know if things have changed in the employee training and process these days at The Loft, but we had to go through constant training both on the computer and in store, without knowing or preparing in advanced. Our shift manager would simply gather us, tell us a style related scenario that we may face with a client and gave us 5 minutes to create an outfit that was practical for that situation! Let's just say I knew where everything was in the store, haha! Anyway, we were taught the method of sizing up or down according to frames and that's how I learned the technique and would feel SO great when I'd suggest this to our clients and they would walk away with that favorite dress or top! 

    I hope you found the tips I shared here helpful the next time you're shopping and are in love with something that's only available in one frame category! I also want to mention that this method also applies to plus sizes, too. I often get questions either on Facebook or YouTube where women mistake body shapes and frames for sizing, which are completely different! I also hope that you liked my outfit and feel inspired to recreate it, tweed in pastel colors are so chic,  sophisticated and can be styled in so many ways! Have an amazing weekend, my dear friends, and thanks so much for stopping by, see you all here again Monday morning! 

     

    XO,

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  • Shake Your Pom Pom, Shake Your Pom Pom!

    Apr 28, 2016

     

     

    SHOP THE SET!

    1 | 2 | 3 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8


    Happy Thursday, beautiful friends!

    As many of you know, pom pom bag charms have been a huge trend these past couple of seasons and I personally love them, well, perhaps I'm a tad bit obsessed, haha! I have a few that I like to switch out to create different color contrasts and vibes to both my bag and overall outfit. They add such a cute touch and a little personality, which is what I really love about them! Now, my love has carried over to other pieces, such as shoes! I just recently purchased these pom pom sandals, which I'm extremely excited to wear this spring and summer with shorts, skirts and dresses! I just have to remember not to leave them out because my cat will definitely turn them into his new toy (if you've watched my 'How to Take Care of Your Jewelry' video, you know how much of menace he can be!) I also love the pom poms look on sneakers! I was so bummed when these sold out in my size because I think they really add more of a trendy and stylish element to the whole classic tee, jeans and sneakers look. 

    Are you loving the trend?! Thanks so much for stopping by, my beautiful friends, and I hope your day is as fabulous as YOU!

     

    XO,

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  • Cut it Out!

    Apr 27, 2016

     

    GET THE LOOK!

    Dress: c/o Almost Famous (ON SALE HERE// Necklaces: c/o Athra Luxe (HERE & HERE// Ring: c/o Kendra Scott (HERE) // Purse: Zac Posen (similar HERE// Wedges: GUESS (similar ON SALE HERE// Lipstick: Milani (HERE)

     

     

    Happy Hump Day, friends!

    I hope you're all having a great week so far! Today's look features a dress that has a trendy element to it, cut out shoulders! I'm definitely loving this trend, as well as the complete off the shoulder. If you are pear shaped with a longer torso, like myself, then you most likely have experienced some challenges in selecting form fitting longer dress styles, such as the midi or maxi. Most of the challenge is due to the necklines that many of these styles have, which often don't include one that helps to visually balance out our wider hips. Since the torso is longer, the hips begin lower on the body and so when wearing not so flattering pieces, our upper bodies appear much smaller than our lower!  If your goal is to create balance, so that not all of the focus is on one particular area, in this case the hips, then there are some things you may want to look for, such as the necklines and shoulder details. With the off the shoulder, the neckline is long and wide, exposing the entire upper chest, which is great in balancing out fuller hips. When it comes to cut out shoulder styles, the neckline isn't as important, since it's accompanied by the addition of some width in the shoulder area, since they're exposed. All of these details will help balance everything out, while embracing your natural curves, which is pretty awesome! 

    Please note that I'm not trying to suggest that you have to create a balance to your hip area. I'm making suggestions to those of you who perhaps feel insecure about wearing more fitted dress styles or about your hips in general. It would be easier for me to say, "wear what you want", but the reality is not everything we want or like works for us. This is why we try clothes on before we buy or keep them, right?! I'm here to be a real trusted friend and source for you, so you know what to look for when shopping and so you no longer have to be subjected to the experience of trying on a ton of stuff that just doesn't fit like it should, which can sometimes make us feel a little insecure. It's never us, but always the clothes, remeber that ;)

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my beautiful friends! I hope you found this post helpful and that you have the absolute best day ahead! 

     

    XO,

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  • The Most Universally Flattering Little White Dress!

    Apr 26, 2016

    Happy Tuesday, beauties!

    As we all know, there are basics that are needed in every woman's wardrobe, making them essentials and today, I'm sharing with you what to look for in selecting the most figure flattering option for one of those essentials, the little white dress (LWD)! Just with the LBD and LBJ, this piece is extremely versatile, especially during the spring and summer months, just don't wear it at a wedding, unless you are the bride, #goodvibesonly! What I've learned through personal experience and frustration, if I may add, is that brand stores don't tend to carry a wide enough selection of white dress styles, which can make finding the perfect one that much more challenging than with its contrasted counterpart. So, I want to share one particular style that will make the whole process that much easier for you, I'm confident of it! This particular shape and style will flatter every.single.body shape and there's only two things you need to look for: a crew neckline and an a-line cut. An a-line hem will look like the shape of an a, meaning that it will have a very slight flare just under the widest part of the hips and is generally found in fit and flare or shift dress styles. The overall style is feminine and figure flattering, all of which are my favorite and only F words, haha! 

    I hope you found this post helpful in selecting the best no fuss LWD option out there. Hopefully this will make ordering online a much easier option for you, if you just can't seem to find what you're looking for in stores or will at least give you an idea of what to look for, so you don't waist time trying on a bunch of styles that just don't fit right! Thanks so much for stopping by, my beautiful friends, and I hope your day is as fabulous as YOU!


    SHOP THE LWD!


     


    XO, 

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  • The Chambray Shirt Revisited

    Apr 25, 2016

     

    GET THE LOOK!

    Shirt: Buffalo David Bitton (similar HERE)  // Tank: Cynthia Rowley // Skirt: New York & Company (similar ON SALE HERE)  // Purse: Zac Posen (similar HERE// Sandals: Missguided 

     

     

    Happy Monday, beautiful friends!

    I hope you all had a wonderful weekend and are ready for an amazing week ahead! For today's look, I decided to go for a combination featuring chambray in a way that I feel would be perfect for the office or for days you may want to get a bit dressed up. Like with denim, chambray can be dressed up or down, so I encourage you to explore various options of styling your chambray piece, specifically a shirt. Perhaps you can wear yours paired with a floral printed pencil skirt, as I did here. It creates a bit of a more relaxed vibe to the more dressier feel that the pencil skirt provides. 

    You may remember a few weeks back, I shared some tips on wearing and styling floral pieces in my post, What to Look for in Floral Prints to Create Your Desired (Figure Flattering) EffectIn that post, I explained the different illusions a base or background color of your floral piece, particularly black or white, can create to your body shape; I encourage you to check it out for more details on what you may want to consider when shopping. Since I'm wearing a white floral pencil skirt, I decided to wear my chambray shirt as a cardigan, leaving it open and knotted over a white tank that also features a hint of chambray. These details help to add dimension and interest to the upper portion of the outfit, preventing all of the focus from being placed on the skirt, creating a more figure flattering outfit for my pear shape overall. Styling the shirt this way also adds a relaxed vibe to the look, but you can of course wear yours as a shirt tucked in for a more polished, put-together pairing. A side note for all my rectangular shapes, tucking in or knotting your shirts will establish your waistline, which can be easily concealed with a pencil skirt; always look for ways you can bring attention to your waist by either tucking, knotting or belting. 

    I believe this combination would be suitable and figure flattering for all body shapes overall, since we have a mixture of texture, print and style on both the upper and lower portions of the outfit. I also want to point out that a white printed floral skirt would look particularly flattering styled in multiple ways for the inverted triangle, apple and hourglass shapes. For the first two, the white background combined with the print will help to add some visual weight to the lower body, permitting for either of these shapes to go as simple as possible on top if desired, who doesn't love working with a no fuss piece?! The hourglass shape has a proportional figure, so there are many options that one can experiment with a skirt like this that will flatter those natural curves. 

    I hope this post provided you with some ideas on styling your chambray shirt in a different way this spring! Thanks so much for stopping by, my dear friends, and I hope you have a wonderful week ahead!

     

    XO,

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  • Warm Neutrals

    Apr 22, 2016

     

    Happy Friday, friends!

    I hope you all had an amazing week and are ready for some weekend fun! I feel today's look would be a perfect weekend outfit, since it's both stylish, casual and comfortable. I want to start from the ground up with sharing my love for wedges and how comfy they can be! If you're not a fan of stilettos or pumps or you find walking in heels uncomfortable, try a pair of wedges. They're so comfy and easy to walk in and they go well with so many different pieces, including maxi dresses/skirts. Sometimes...

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