Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Color Fix

Well, since Missy, Anna, and Ashton returned from the Atlanta apparel markets this weekend, we've had loads of pictures to sort through and zillions of spring and summer pieces to photograph for the website. (Our lovely model Caitlyn has been wonderful, but I think if we make her try on one more spring outfit she's going to kill us all.) Anyway, we're planning to do a thorough spring fashion forecast here in the next couple of days to let you know what to expect for the coming season, but while we finish pulling that together, here's a little something to tide you over . . .

Color Inspiration!
I've been up to my eyeballs today in photos from Stockholm Fashion Week, and honestly the general color palette has me a little depressed. It seems like every single look is black, or black and gray, or for something really wild and crazy it's black, gray, and midnight blue. I know, I know . . . these are Autumn/Winter lines, and that's what I should expect, but still, when I've spent all day looking at this--

I need a quick color fix!

Ahhhh, much better.

Friday, January 23, 2009

One Shoulder Elegance

Of course everyone is talking about the gorgeous Jason Wu gown that Michelle Obama wore to the inaugural ball--and with good reason. It was both fresh and vintage, ultra-glamorous and still completely appropriate. I think one of the things that made the dress so memorable is the fact that it really accentuated the first lady's best features: her toned arms and shoulders.

So we're taking a little inspiration from the beautiful Michelle (I'm sure it won't be the last time), and suggesting two of our favorite one-shoulder styles that give the same air of timeless elegance.

First, this one shoulder ruffled dress by Nicole Miller has a lot of detail--like the first lady's dress--but the single color and fabric keep it from being too busy. It's all about fit and texture.

And second, Trina Turk's Mayreau top is a unique and kind of bold piece, but still very wearable if paired with something simple like a black high-waisted skirt as seen in our look book. You could even wear it untucked with the cute pair of shorts for a casual summer look.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Wardrobe Essentials - Winter '09

The most recent addition to my personal wardrobe was a new black turtleneck. Yes, here's a picture of me wearing it while I write this post. :)
Although the turtleneck didn't seem like an exciting purchase at the time, it was a necessary one and (surprisingly) it has quickly become one of my favorite pieces in my winter wardrobe. It fits perfectly, feels great, and makes a wonderful backdrop to all my other pieces. So this black turtleneck has me thinking about the subject of wardrobe essentials--basic items of clothing that are foundational to an outfit and can be accessorized in a variety of ways to look great for any occasion. So here are a few of the pieces that I think every woman should have in her closet this winter.

Essential #1: The Sweater Dress
I love the warmth and comfort of a snugly sweater dress on winter days. This versatile piece can be worn with tights and heels for a night out, leggings and flats for a comfy daytime look, or even as a cute topper over a pair of jeans.

Essential #2: A Coat You Love to Wear
Unfortunately, the winter coat is often a necessary evil in our wardrobes--a utilitarian piece that self-preservation instinct forces us to put on over an otherwise cute outfit. It doesn't have to be this way! Perhaps more than any other wardrobe essential, the winter coat is an investment piece: if you live in a chilly climate, you will probably wear it almost daily for several months; and if you're on a budget, you'll probably have to keep it for more than one season. So spend a little, and buy a coat that you love--with some design detail please. I think this one by Nanette Lepore is beautiful.

Essential #3: Boots You Can Actually Walk In
I love those pointy-toed, spikey-heeled, calf-hugging boots as much as the next girl (and I thoroughly recommend owning a pair) but for my day-to-day life, I need a pair of boots that are a little more practical--while still looking great. Here are some by Naughty Monkey that would work well.

Essential #4: Jeans That Can Go Anywhere
Need I say more? This is an essential for any season, but for winter especially, jeans can provide the warmth and the style that you need. Take the time to find a cut that fits you perfectly (more on this topic in a later post), and keep them versitile by going with a dark wash. I love the Rocker Flare by Joe's Jeans pictured here.

Essential #5: The Black Turtleneck
You already know how I feel about this. Here's the one I bought.

I hope these tips were helpful. Let us know what your winter wardrobe essentials are by posting a comment. We'd love to hear what you think!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Let us Introduce Ourselves . . .

Welcome to McAuley's new blog! We're glad you found us, and we hope you'll check back often to see what's happening at McAuley's--from new arrivals and current promotions to style tips and fashion inspiration. For our first post, we wanted to give you a peak inside our fabulous showroom. If you're in the area, stop by for a visit . . . and an unparalleled shopping experience. If you're not local, you can shop McAuley's online.