| Ask The Style Chefs: June 2006 Archives

ask us

( have a style question? email us )

June 2006 Archives

Q. I’m under 5ft, a size 14/16 and over 50.  What length of skirt do I wear since I now only wear flatish type shoes.  Do I wear a short skirt, knee length or a skirt to my ankles.
-Skirt Concerned 

A. For your age and petite height, avoid long skirts that hit around the ankles, they will only stunt your height and make you appear even shorter. Obviously avoid the mini since you’re not in your 20’s or 30’s. Look for skirts that are not too voluminous that hit just below the knee.  The length will balance your proportions better and just because you’re wearing “flatish” shoes, don’t give up on choosing stylish shoes whether they’re flats or kitten heels.

Here are 3 skirt options we found at in your size:

Mac & Jac Abstract
Watermelon Print Skirt, $72


Jones New York Signature
Knot Print Skirt, $74


Softwear Soft Touch
Print Skirt, $64

Q. I was recently at a Premier Jewelry party and was very confused.  How do I know if I should be wearing gold or silver jewelry?  I have a good many silver pieces.  My boyfriend gave me a gold ring with a topaz stone, so now I only wear gold.  Can you mix the colors?  What about copper - can you wear it with gold?
-Color Quandry 

A. Don’t feel stymied by your jewelry choices.  Even though you’re wearing a gift of gold and topaz on your finger, you can still continue to wear silver.  If you wear gold on your finger or wrist you can wear silver around your neck and on your ears.  For example, I wear a silver watch, but still wear gold earrings and a beaded necklace with gold details.  Unless the earrings or necklace mix gold and silver, then I’d suggest you keep your ears and necklace in the same precious metals.  If you wear a gold ring I’d keep your other rings and bracelet on that hand in the gold tone as well. If you wear a silver watch on one hand, you can still wear a gold ring on the other. The bottom line is, it’s ok to mix metals as long as they are not visually close together.

Q. What in the world do I wear to a company picnic that I’m attending with my husband July 30?  He works for a rather large corporation.  There will be sports and swimming (which I’m not about to do…swimsuit, yuck!)  Here is my major concerns:  I want to look conservative but stylish.  Also, my biggest physical liability is my arms, so nothing sleeveless!  If you can answer this email I would be eternally grateful!  
-Corporate Dressing Coward   

WhattoweartocompanypicnicA. This is meant to be a fun occasion that boosts employee moral and builds company relationships. You’re there to support your husband and simply enjoy the festivities.  You’ll probably see a sea of men wearing shorts and golf shirts while the women will vary from skirts to shorts to sundresses depending on the activities they wish to participate in.  It only reflects well on your husband to look good, but comfortable, be friendly and join in some of the sporty activities. 

Shorts are such a huge trend this season, we just did a segment on “The View” with tips on finding the best style for different body shapes and have a new style recipe, Shorts Story, with plenty more options.  I think shorts with a short-sleeved top or a fitted button down shirt with the sleeves rolled up will allow you the flexibility to join in activities, fit in with the crowd and sit on a blanket without worrying about what you may be exposing. 

Wear stylish espadrilles that give you some height and bring along cute kicks (not your gym sneakers) to slip into for a few of the competitions. And carry a pretty tote or straw bag to hold your essentials for the day like sunscreen and sunglasses. Add in deodorant and a travel pack of baby wipes so you can clean up a bit and appear fresh if the day is really hot.

summer weight Bermuda shorts, $49.50 at; sport shirt, $35 at; Yellow Box Bolton woven leather wedge, $39.95 at; Skechers Sightsee sporty flats, $49.95 at

Q.  I’m getting married in September and I’m a little stuck on my bridesmaid’s colors. We ordered their dresses because we thought the dresses were hot pink, however they are more of a fuchsia. My colors are hot pink, light pink and a summer green. What do I do about the dresses being fuchsia? I soooo don’t know what to do and I’m freaking out.  I already bought some hot pink stuff and the flower girl…..her skirt is hot pink.
-Pretty in Pink, Pink and More Pink 

A. Wow, you really love pink. If you can’t exchange the dresses, stop fretting.  The freaking out will only consume you, bug your fiancé and upset your bridesmaids.  I understand and empathize with your problem - biggest day of your life and all - but remember it’s about you and your fiancé getting married and spending your lives together, not the colors matching.  You can’t make your bridesmaids buy new dresses. If all the bridesmaids have the same color on, it will look like you intended to have them wear fushchia-one more shade of pink. Say you just couldn’t get enough of all shades of pink. If guest or family member makes a comment, say there was a little snafu, but you just let it roll off your shoulders to enjoy the important experience.  And if you want to change something, then get a different skirt for the flower girl.

Q. I cannot believe that I am writing to you for fashion advice.  I feel that I am pretty fashion savvy and pride myself on being appropriately dressed for every occasion.  Here is my dilemma:  I just bought a cream colored Theory sundress.  It is two layers of gauzy material and when I first picked it up, I thought it might be see-through.  But when I tried it on I could not even see the red Hanky Pankys I was wearing.  It was just what I was looking for—perfect for my honeymoon in Greece later this summer.  This morning, I tried on the dress again and found that it is in fact VERY see-through in proper lighting.  Now, here is my question: what is the appropriate type of slip to wear with a sundress/slip dress that will not be bulky or look funny with a gauzy dress. I am 27 years old and have never worn a slip! 
-Peek a Boo 

A. Slips seem to be a thing of the past.  You’re best options are to wear a camisole of thin material in a nude shade or a nude bra paired with a nude thong or hipster brief.  If you want a little more coverage, go for a bodysuit style also in nude. None of these will add bulk and they’ll give you coverage without showing off underneath.


Donna Karan Intimates:
Solutions Camisole
$68 at


Body by Nancy Ganz
Sheer solutions bodybriefer
$38 at

Wacoal Shapewear Camisole
$60 at

Q. I work at the post office and we are not allowed to wear open toe shoes at any time.  It is summer and I love to wear capris. What kind of shoes other than sandals would look good with them?
-Toes Tucked In 

A.  Just because you’re wearing capris doesn’t mean you have to wear toe-baring sandals.  There are several options that still show off a little foot flesh and are stylish to wear with your cropped pants. Look for ballet style flats, closed toe espadrilles and wedges.  The ballet flats and espadrilles will keep the look casual and the wedge can give you some height, but still you give better foot support if you’re standing all day.

Shoes Iaec1002676
Steve Madden ‘Pixee’
$62.99 at

Shoes Iaec1004347
Chinese Laundry ‘Insight’
$69.99 at

Shoes Ia87146
Franco Sarto ‘Question’
$79.99 at

Seycheles No Apologies
retro round-toe wedge
$84.95 at

Q. My cousin (who is like my sister because I’m the only child) is finally turning 21 this July.  I want to get her something that’s stylish, fun, hip, but will also be cherished for the rest of her life.  I fell for a charm bracelet from Juicy Couture, but they‘re completely sold out.  Any ideas?
-A Charmed Search

A. Since you seem to like the charm bracelet idea I searched for worthy replacements and I think even better options for your gift giving dilemma. I wanted to offer up choices of items that weren’t merely trendy, but also within the same price range that could be worn for countless years. 

Br Bangle Bali ThFrom, you can send photos of you and your “sister” cousin and she will custom make a set of charm bracelets.



Twoclover will custom make a bracelet or necklace made with vintage charms chosen especially for the wearer. offers bracelets with various affirmation charms in the shape of circles or hearts. Choose phrases that are personal to your relationship with your cousin.




401-B32-MopThis mother of pearl bracelet from has the look of a charm bracelet with five mother of pearl petals.

D0467640352928 V1 M56577569831200250Julie Sandlau’s charm bracelet features a trio of delicate charms at

Q. It’s the beginning of the rainy season where I live and I need help finding a cute and fashionable umbrella to take around. I’m really into the clear ones with designs on them and can’t seem to find any. Can you help??
-Stay Dry Stylishly

Nmd2489 An A. We girls at are big fans of the Burberry bubble style clear umbrella that comes in several color combos.  We wax nostalgic about having worn yellow rain slickers to elementary school and splashing in puddles. Of course, I still splash in puddles with my toile rain boots on!  With a clear umbrella you can stay dry and still see what’s ahead of you.  I’ve found a few “clear” choices for you along with a pattern that just jumped out at me.

Burberry Clear-Panel Umbrella, $115 at

see also the Kate Spade clear stick umbrella for $95 at

Rb01 White-1

We found a few cute clear umbrellas
at, like this clear bubble stick
version for $17.90


Echo Print Umbrella
$45 at
(also in a great striped print that I love!)

Q. When is the season for cropped pants? What is the best way to wear the new summer short trend?
-Shorts Unsure 

V0416340339630 V1 M56577569831226572-1A. The stores are so flooded with cropped pants and shorts this season that it’s difficult to find a good pair of lightweight pants. Cropped pants have become a year round length for pants, but in order to wear them for each season you need to choose appropriate fabrics.  For summer, choose cropped pants in cotton, linen and denim and pair with flats, sandals, wedges and espadrilles.  For winter, choose cropped pants in wool blends and velvet and wear them with your knee-high boots.

As for shorts, inseam lengths matter. Unless you’re under 25, skip any inseam that isn’t 5 inches or longer - nobody needs to see butt cheek when you bend over or bend down!  Obviously, shorts worn with tees and tanks and cute kicks (sneakers) are meant for sporty activities.  If you’re looking for a stylish option, pair your shorts with a cuter top, add long beads and wear with sandals that have some kind of heel. For a “night out” wardrobe or even casual Friday at the office, pair your longer length shorts (they hit just below or at the knee) with a cute top, fitted jacket and sassy wedges or espadrilles to give you height. For a classic look, wear your shorts with a crisp, fitted button down shirt and roll up the sleeves, a belt with a bigger belt buckle and sandals.

BCBG Max Azria Diana Cuffed Shorts (shown here), $108 at

get the scoop

subscribe to our free weekly email! rss feed follow us on Twitter! Like us on Facebook! Follow us on Pinterest!

like us on facebook!

subscribe + win


Around the Web: