Classic Black Dress (Alice Yim NY), Classic Styles…

It is without a doubt, Blog Reader, that my favourite fashion days involve little make-up, a black dress and some gorgeous shoes.  I’ve worn this Raina Dress by Alice Yim practically non-stop since I got it.  I love the neckline and the side slits in the skirt that flow beautifully in the Manhattan breeze when I walk.  Created in silk Georgette and Charmeuse (I’m obsessed with the quality of the fabrics I wear these days) Raina is one of those dresses that makes a perfect day to night transition – it can be worn without the belt for a relaxed day time look or cinched in at the waist for a sharper evening silhouette.

Images: Lydia Hudgens Photography.

Every time I wear these Zara sandals I get compliments.  I think they were a fantastic purchase this year and I’m happy to see that Zara has updated the style for fall here. If that isn’t a great party shoe I don’t know what is, Blog Reader!

The belt in this look is from a European brand I miss in the US very much.  COS offer modern and timeless styles and they are a favourite of mine for basics like white shirts and classic shift dresses.  COS have some fabulous structured silhouettes, so if you’re in the market for some seriously fashionable styles be sure to check out their website.  You can shop online too, obviously great for me in the US.

Wearing: Raina dress in onyx, Alice Yim.  Sandals, Zara.  Belt, COS.  Bag, ASOS.

There are still lots of exciting things coming up on the blog over the next few weeks, Blog Reader.  My Nine West x Pose style challenge draws to a close – thank you to everyone who has been voting!  You can find the penultimate style here, which, if you ‘love’ you will be entered into a competition to win shoes. I have (short) shorts, a beautiful purple gown from BCBG Max Azria and some gorgeous accessories coming up.  Anything else you want to see? Be sure to email me using the ‘Ask Me Anything’ mail top right of the blog.  Until next time…..  StyleOnTheCouch, xo

Stripes and Sparkle for the Sea…

Stripes – last summer we saw a lot of this on the catwalk; wide bands of orange, blue and red at Prada, billowing striped maxi dresses at Jil Sander and fruity striped jumpsuits at Marc Jacobs.  Without a doubt last year stripes were bold.  This spring, stripes give way to florals, but stripes remain a perennial fashion favourite for me – a pattern with lasting charm.  Floral is cute, stripes can be a little more edgy:

Besides, I’ve been experiencing mixed feelings about the ‘prettiness’ of the current spring fashions anyway.  I like to dare myself to be different but the florals we are presented with this summer are now feeling a bit too pristine and glossy for me.  As you can tell, Blog Reader, I’m having a few doubts this weekend about where florals will ultimately sit in my wardrobe… (for a great discussion on this read the excellent and thought-provoking article by Daphne Merkin in Elle about spring’s ‘new prettiness’).

So, I’m taking a trip to Turkey in May and thoughts are already turning to my holiday wardrobe.  I spied this split stripes maxi dress in Anthropologie and thought it was the perfect item for my travels.  Anthropologie have some lovely items in store right now and most of them make me think about holiday wear. I love this cute flared Akebono Halter Dress and these Kivi wedges by Leifsdottir are such a crazy unique style to make a statement in (although sadly I don’t think I’ll be trekking around the ruins of the Lycian Way in these).

There is something quite comforting about a dress you can roll up and pack, then unroll throw on and wear day-to-night… I’m thinking about this dress for long walks on the beach, lunch by the sea (my head is in Turkey already, my body is still in New York City, can you tell I’m missing Europe?!)

Photos: the fabulous Lydia Hudgens.

Taking any trips this year, Blog Reader? What else do I need for the perfect summer holiday wardrobe? Also, your thoughts on stripes?

Wearing: Striped dress from Anthropologie; boyfriend jacket from ASOS; Izabela suede pumps from Nine West; diamond pendant necklace from Anjolee.

“The Body Never Lies” ~ Martha Graham.

Last year I attended a wonderful talk on women’s rights and women’s clothes at Fashion Institute of Technology in New York.  Although hard for me to imagine, the changes described in women’s dress since even the 1900s was quite startling.  I started to think about the evolution of lingerie too – women’s lingerie has evolved enormously since the 1920s when the introduction of elastic fabrics took the bra industry mainstream. Fast forward to the 1980s and my favourite clothing piece the bodysuit, no more an undergarment, was popularised by designers such as Donna Karen and immortalised by the likes of Madonna, Beyonce and Lady Gaga.

Images above from Elle.com / thisislandlife and Tush Magazine.

In another of my posts that combine fashion, lingerie and outerwear, I’m focusing on the one piece.  I think that a bodysuit is one of the most flexible and versatile pieces a woman can own; easily converting from day to night, from the casual to the dressy and elegant, from the basic to more risque.  Several versions of the one piece exist – teddies, rompers, bodysuits – each slightly different in style but all experiencing a major renaissance as a fashionable garment for women both as lingerie and as outerwear.

Here I’m wearing the black lace romper by Amber Sakai.  Amber has a number of sheer lace pieces in her spring collection and this one of my favourites.  Some of the other  one pieces I am coveting right now are:

Left to right, below: Bordelle Nouvelle Justine body; Dolce & Gabbana Peony- Print matte satin body available to buy here on Net-a-porter; Lascivious Midori bodysuit and The Lake and The Stars Monument stretch mesh body (click here to buy on Net-a-porter).

I’m also wearing my Aiko waistcoat by Lascivious (you really need to see the back of this piece, so I’ll do another post soon, I’ve been wearing it non-stop, Blog Reader) and the BCBG Max Azria Power Skirt bought during my trip to Montreal with the styling help of my friend Lani of Mon Petit Chou Chou.

Do you own a bodysuit, Blog Reader? Are you as much of a fan of them as me?