Cold Weather Layering

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Club Monaco vest (shop similar options below), Custom jacket from Hong Kong (details here), Madewell dress (shop similar styles below), SPANX tights, Hunter Huntress boots

It has been pouring rain for the last 3 days in San Francisco which has resulted in my Hunter boots getting some heavy rotation, and increased layering. I love putting unexpected pieces together and adore how this faux fur vest looks with this more polished blazer. The polka dot dress adds some fun pattern mixing and the boots tone down the trendiness.

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The one benefit of this weather (aside from the natural benefits, of course)? My hair adores humidity! These curls are aux-natural and i’m obsessed with the lack of heat styling that’s necessary.

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My dress and faux fur vest are from last season, but shop a few of this season’s options here:

Top 3 Boot Brands for Wide Calves

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J.Crew flat boot, Hunter “Huntress” rain boot, DUO Custom Wide Calf Heeled Boot

One of my most visited posts of all time surrounds wide-calf boots, and my never ending search for the perfect pairs. After many years of ordering and sending back boots that just didn’t quite work, i’ve found my staple items, and the brands that carry them. I wholeheartedly believe that every woman shouldn’t be without a basic black riding boot, a pair of rain boots, and a classic heeled leather boot. These have served me well across varying types of weather, through many states and in numerous formal and casual occasions.

My black riding boots are from J.Crew extended calf sizing, and I love them (see my full review here). I have styled them with jeans and skirts, and they are absolute workhorses in my wardrobe. In fact, they have already lasted me through two seasons.

Hunter Huntress boots were a newer discovery. Always wanting a pair, I searched long and hard before finding the Huntress, their extended calf version. While they don’t come in many colors, they fit my 16 inch calf beautifully (review here) and have been worn through countless weekends.

My DUO boots were a purchase of necessity. I spent close to 2 years searching for the perfect heeled, extended calf boot. I finally stumbled across DUO and was drawn into their custom-fit option. I took the plunge and ordered from this UK-based brand and have loved them. They have so many gorgeous, chic styles that you would never be able to tell the boot is extended calf. An absolute lifesaver and a work staple (see my last styling here).

Are there any brands you love for extended calf sizes?

Gap Printed Fit and Flare Dress

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Gap Dress, SPANX tights, DUO boots, Ray Ban aviators

Towards the end of 2013 I made the decision to change the way I thought about shopping. Running a blog can be quite expensive and can definitely increase the temptation to purchase frivolously. With that, in preparation for changing my habits I opted to spend nothing the entire month of January when it came to clothing or accessories. I did quite well the first 24 days, until I spotted this dress, for 50% off, in my size. All hell broke loose and I succumbed, but I think by these pictures you’d agree it was a worthwhile expense.

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I adore this dress. From the stiff cotton material to the flared silhouette and the three quarter length sleeves, it is a curvy girl’s dream. I opted for the bolder blue and black stripe rather than the more Summer appropriate blue and white, but would honestly considering going back for the latter as well.

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The dress feels so well made with a hidden zipper and clasp up the back. I am wearing a size 10 here but could have maybe gotten away with an 8, so take note that it does run about half a size big. I love the high neckline as it lends itself amazingly to jewelry, and the length is my ideal at about 3 inches above the knee. This still allows for comfortable wear with bare legs.

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While i’m back on my shopping ban, I had to share this amazing steal with you and hope you’ll consider snagging it at Gap’s next blowout sale.

How To: Quick Tips for Making an Outfit Instantly Flattering

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Piperlime sweater (similar), BDG jeans, Ray Ban sunglasses, Chanel vintage flats, necklace purchased on Hunters Alley

If we’re being totally honest, one of the reasons I started this blog was to share tips like this with the world. For years i’ve been pulling and tugging at my clothes, folding this, hemming that to make items flattering that otherwise wouldn’t be. I’ve said it before on this blog, i’m a firm believer that I can make anything flattering. A few simple tricks that i’ve learned over the years is the basic tuck, and the classic roll. See below for deets

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As you can see, this outfit above is worn with the pieces as they come. Very skinny jeans, a sweater that is too long and cuts off the leg line. The sweater gives me no shape and the jeans make my legs look like sausages.

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Now, behold the tuck. I do this with almost all of my skirts and jeans. If i’m wearing a shirt that doesn’t feel flattering but won’t suit a belt, i’ll tuck it into the waist of my pants. Regardless of the rise of the jean or the style, a little messy tuck goes a long way in creating proportion as well as giving yourself some definition. Just be sure not to tuck the whole sweater in all the way around for risk of looking frumpy.

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The second trick is one i’ve learned as skinny jeans have come into style in recent years: the peg. I’ve done a few posts (here and here) on my very specific jean rolling style, but the gist of it is to make the roll as messy as possible. We’re going for an undone vibe. This shows some ankle and in my opinion, makes your legs feel thinner as you don’t feel squeezed into pants that taper down and make your thighs appear wider.

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And there you have it! I roll up my sleeves, and if we’re feeling really desperate, throw my hair into a high bun and off we go. A swipe of lipstick doesn’t hurt either.

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What do you think of the transformation? Are there any on-the-go tricks you use that I should know about?

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