The Party Planner: BCBG Max Azria

At this time of year, Blog Reader, I start to get excited about the party season.  Yep, with my birthday in November* then Christmas it’s time to think (hmm, dream?) of dresses for cocktails with the girls, longer gowns for dinners out and the right styles to comfortably dance the night away in.

I bought this BCBG Max Azria dress in New York City during one of their super sales.  I think BCBG is a great brand to turn to for cocktail dresses and evening gowns; I like the search functions of the website (type, length, colour) and the price bands are often reasonable for special occasion wear.

Some of my favourites from the current collection, clockwise from left: Claudine Straples Evening Gown; Raya Pleated Lace Cocktail Dress; Nagdalina Side Peat Printed Dress;  Carine Asymmetric Draped Evening Gown; Mercedes Cocktail Dress.

Purple is an unusual colour choice for me.  Symbolic of royalty and opulence (the shade here is a royal purple hue) this dress is a grand choice for a night out – I’ve mentioned before I am a sucker for splits but the cut-out back detail is also interesting and unusual.

I’m even accessorizing here, Blog Reader! A little sparkle over the holiday season feels essential.

I’m busy putting together some other dress / gown suggestions for the party season so if you’ve seen any killer styles leave me a comment below, as I might include it in the feature. Have a great weekend!

Wearing: Dress, BCBG Max Azria;  Clutch, Debenhams.  Gold bracelet, IN PINK.  Heels, Zara Basic Sandal.
Photos by Lydia Hudgens.

*Hint, hint.

Fleet Ilya Diamond Body Piece: Harness Style

A body harness is a key theme for spring summer 2013 according to the recent fashion weeks.  Jason Wu, Herve Leger and BCBGMaxAzria (image far below) all featured such looks within their collection, much to my joy having been a fan of accessorizing this way for a while now.  In this post I’m wearing my new diamond body piece by Fleet Ilya, who have a wide range of harnesses from a simple, thin leather style that sits around the waist and crosses at the back, to a more complicated ‘web’ design that buckles around the neck, waist and ribcage (here) and everything in between.

Below: some of Fleet Ilya’s designs from the web and in the press

I’ve spoken on the blog before about how Fleet Ilya blur the line between leather bondage and fashion accessories with their collection.  I think the harnesses and are a wonderful way to add interest, power and sex appeal to a look.

My favourite way of wearing this body piece right now is with a tailored jacket and a simple white blouse and skinny jeans; and with this white dress from COS.  Since the black tuxedo jacket was another big trend on the catwalk recently, I’d say I’m getting a head start on SS13 too!

There is also something a little equestrian about this look which I love.  It’s smart and not overtly sexual but understated, which I think is the key to incorporating these pieces as outerwear.

This is probably one of my favourite StyleOnTheCouch looks to date – monochrome, tailoring and a harness.

Wearing: River Island blazer, COS shirtdress, Fleet Ilya Diamond Body Piece.

“I Believe In Pink” ~ Audrey Hepburn

I blame you (and Audrey Hepburn) entirely for this post, Blog Reader.  Having read all your lovely comments on my black BCBG Max Azria Essential Knit Dress (thank you!) I couldn’t resist this pink, short-sleeved version in the BCBG sale, prior to all my travels this summer.  There are some lovely pieces in the sale – if you want to get in early on metallics for fall how about this sequined pleated skirt or if you, like me, have a few weddings to attend this summer, what about this teal evening gown?

I took the dress you see me wearing here to Austin, Texas last month and wore it for a weekend brunch in the city.  The legendary Driskill Hotel had a great cafe / bakery that is perfect for wiling away a few hours (if you visit, try the ATX City Burger) and a walk around 6th Street revealed some of the more gritty bars and clubs that Austin is also known for.

I’ve written about pink before – there is most certainly something about this colour that gets my back up which is likely its association with a fluffy kind of ‘with-bows-on’ femininity*.  Having said that I like pink with black, also pink with gold too – I’d be interested to hear how you play with pink, Blog Reader…

Another question I have today concerns these high-low styles I am seeing everywhere right now.  I’ll not lie, at first I hated how this looked. The style grew on me (it’s a nice twist for skirts and dresses in particular this year), although I only own two pieces…  Who else has a high-low style, skirt, top, dress, other?

I’m now off to get-my-margarita-on for a Cinco de Mayo party.  My friend Lani, queen of cocktails, has the perfect recipe for a St Germain margarita here on her blog.  Pass the tequila…!  See you on Monday, Blog Reader! xo

Wearing: BCBG Max Azria Donesa Essential Knit High Low Dress; Cuff from H&M; Glasses, GUESS; heels, Nine West.
*You know I rebel by putting harnesses on everything, Blog Reader.