| Ask The Style Chefs: March 2008 Archives

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March 2008 Archives

Q. What panties/underwear would you recommend for underneath a bridesmaid’s gown that is a champagne-colored, satin material? The dress requires a strapless bra with a long front so that the dress stays smooth, and now I’m looking for seamless underwear that I can wear underneath. We tried high-waisted Spanx to create a completely smooth, body shaper type look, but the waistband is easily seen through the dress. Do you have any ideas/recommendations?

A. You need to look for a seamless thong that will banish the panty line. Look for a smooth thong with a side on the hip that is wider than a g-string style since a g-string may roll or dig into your hip and show a line on the dress.



1. Hanro: Perfectly Nude Thong, $49 at
2. Felina: Hint Of Skin Low Rise G-Kini, $9 at
3. Felina: Hint Of Skin Low Rise Thong, $9 at
4. Calvin Klein Naked thong, $16 at 

5. Miraclesuit: Firm Control Strapless Body Briefer, $52 at at
6. Naomi & Nicole: Luxurious Shaping Convertible Strapless Bra Slip, $48 at
7. The Body Wrap: Body Wrap Lites Bra Slip with Underwire, $42 at

Q. I am looking for a pair of moderately priced strappy sandals with a heel in a nude/tan color. I can’t find them anywhere! I would like to wear them with a pink, just below the knee, bridesmaid dress in a spring wedding and with other summer dresses. I’ve heard that wearing a tan heel can lengthen the leg. Do you have any other shoe suggestions that can give the illusion of a longer leg?
-Illusionary Bare

A. Heels always give the illusion of a longer leg and choosing a neutral color that is similar to your skin tone is like wearing the same clothing color head to toe - it elongates the body. I like that you’ve chosen a neutral cream color to wear with your pink dress, it’s a sophisticated choice.


1. Kenneth Cole Reaction Rich N Post, $83 at
2. Delman Magical, $298.95 at
3. Charles David Calypso, $253.95 at
4. Nine West Havard, $111.60 (sale) at
5. Martinez Valero ‘Desiree’ Sandal, $139.95 at

Q. I recently got engaged and will be planning a wedding on the beach. Do you think black is an appropriate color for a bridesmaid’s dress for a beach wedding?
-Hot Color

A. I would probably choose a color to keep the look cheerful since black can make you feel even hotter in the sun. It seems to attract and “suck” up the heat. If you choose black, then opt for a dress that looks more like a sundress or choose cotton and brighten the arrangement of flowers or keep it very simple and contemporary with a white floral bouquet.

Q. I have been asked to be a bridesmaid in my brother’s wedding this coming August. Instead of selecting a specific bridesmaid’s dress, the bride said that we can wear any dress, as long as it’s navy. I am having a terrible time deciding on a style and finding the perfect dress. The bride’s dress is quite fancy, but the guys are just wearing khakis and blue blazers. And it’s an August outdoor wedding, so it will most likely be HOT.
-Navy Ne’er Do Well

A. Hey, high five to you. Three cheers, make that an ovation to the bride to be. I wish you could see my jubilant face right now and you’d probably feel a little more confident. You have been given the great “gift” of not having to conform to a long list of bride’s wishes and demands and you’ll save yourself some money or at least the anguish of stashing the dress in the back of your closet after the wedding is over. Navy is super chic and I’ve fallen in love with it lately as a substitute to black. The dress doesn’t have to be long-YEAH! Since the guys are wearing the classic prep look of blue blazers and khakis you just need to find a cocktail length dress that can possibly take you from the wedding to a Saturday night dinner party some other time. These fabulous dresses should keep you looking cool.



1. Donna Ricco Stretch Satin Halter Dress, $158 at
2. Jones New York Dress Bateau Neck Silk Dress, $180 at
3. MARC BY MARC JACOBS ‘Kitty’ Strapless Dress, $448 at
4. David Meister One Shoulder Sheath Dress, $306 at 

5. JS Boutique Embellished Matte Jersey Halter Dress, $158 at
6. Tiered Layered Strapless Cocktail Dresses by BCBG MAXAZRIA, $320 at
7. Sophia short silk dress, $195 at
8. Silk tricotine Jenelle short dress, $195 at 

Q. We’re attending a family wedding in the south in June. My mother has chosen a purple dress. She mentioned she plans to wear white nylons and white pumps (she’s in her 70’s but very active still). I keep thinking there’s something better than white for her. She refuses to go without hose. Any advice?
-White Not?

A. I’ve always believed that unless you’re under 10 years old, a ballerina or a quirky rock star, an adult should avoid white stockings. Suggest flesh toned hosiery for your mom and try to match the color perfectly so it looks like she has bare legs. Look for another color of pumps she can wear like a neutral cream or light tan, which can be very sophisticated.

Q. I’m dying for a cool, worn in bomber jacket for spring. But I can’t find one that’s just what I’m looking for. I want one that’s kind of slouchy, rock and roll cool, but not too over the top. Something I can dress up or down.
-Rock Chick

A. I found plenty of options in all price ranges that you might fancy for rock and roll cool.



1. Theory Lanri Leather Jacket- Bloomingdale’s Exclusive, $615 at
2. Xhilaration® Shirred Metallic Faux Leather Bomber, $29.99 at
3. S.W.O.R.D. Lucca Jacket, $745 at
4. Corpus Lambskin Quilted Leather Bomber Jacket in Black, $462 at 

5. Lux Faux Leather Bomber Jacket, $128 at
6. Converse by John Varvatos Zip Hoodie Leather Jacket in Olive, $611 at
7. S.W.O.R.D Piacenza Leather Jacket in Black, $770 at
8. Mossimo® Black: Faux Leather Button Bomber, $34.99 at 

Q. I just picked out the most beautiful Lazaro bridesmaid dress in champagne. The only problem is: I have no idea how to accessorize them. Just earrings or a necklace as well? What color shoes? Any suggestions? -Accessory Challenged  

A. Feel free to choose between earrings and a necklace or choose both, but please don’t buy one of those matching sets of earrings and necklace. Do you really need the bridesmaids to wear exactly the same jewelry? If you’re concerned about their taste level, then suggest they wear earrings of their own choice, but nothing too big or over the top and skip a necklace, which may distract from the dress. Unless you intend to buy your bridesmaids the jewelry to go with the dress, remember it can become a big expense to buy the dress, jewelry and shoes that you expect them to wear. As for shoes, something strappy or a high-heeled sling back. I like a champagne, pale gold or sophisticated cream heel.

Q. I purchased a cute little motorcycle jacket from “Steve and Barry’s” Amanda Bynes Collection “Dear.” I love the way it looks sort of old and vintage, but now I’m not exactly sure what to wear with it. Is it because I’m 35 and shouldn’t be wearing it anyway?
-Age Appropriate

A. Unless you plan to wear it with a tube top and a micro mini, grab back some attitude and don that cute moto jacket. Wear it with a vintage style t-shirt and dark jeans or dress it up with tweed pants or a denim pencil skirt and top with ruffles or shine. Being 35 is still young!


1. Truly Madly Deeply Doves V Neck Tee, $28 at
2. Truly Madly Deeply Night Owl Tee, $28 at 

Q. I’m looking for a bikini top to wear with black boy short bottoms for my new swimsuit. I am only 5 ft tall and somewhat curvy (curvy = breasts and love handles). I have a pretty small frame but I have a C cup, so finding bras and such is hard for me. I’m looking for something that ties at the neck and back to give me the most support and best fit. I’ve read in a lot of magazines that the best swim top for a bigger-busted woman is a halter with a wide band underneath. I’m not really crazy about this look, and while it does give the most support, I think all that cloth makes my breasts look even larger (something I REALLY want to avoid). I’d be interested in trying a triangle cup or bandeau, but can I do that with my cup size and not being the skinniest girl on the block?

A. Truth is, swimwear fits and styles are fickle and finding ones that fit all our different bodies can be frustrating. Jeans and swimwear are the most difficult items to shop for. I did my best to come up with options for your top that should support and fit your C-cup breasts. For a curvy girl I’m surprised you chose a boy short, which on most women adds curves, when you’re trying to downplay certain areas. I’m guessing the short has a higher cut leg. A bandeau top can be hard for many women to wear - they are great for avoiding some tan lines, but it can smoosh some of us and not give enough support for others.





1. Vix Swimwear Savana tube detail triangle bikini top, $78 at
2. Calvin Klein Perfect Fit Core Solids molded halter bikini top, $78 at
3. Sofia Swimwear by Vix Alli halter bikini top, $55 at
4. Moontide Reversible Frolic banded tie halter top, $60 at

5. Calvin Klein Perfect Fit Core Solids seamless retro bikini top, $78 at
6. Shoshanna Solid Bandeau Bikini Top, $110 at
7. Juicy Couture Beach Smocked Bandeau Bikini Top, $94 at
8. Shoshanna Modern Diamond Ring Halter Bikini Top, $85 at

Q. I recently purchased a Velvet (brand, not fabric) deep-V, sleeveless, empire waist, black dress. I live in Minnesota, and would like to wear it out for the evening. Would it be okay to wear a Michael Stars burgundy sparkle turtleneck under it? Is there anything else you could suggest? I don’t have any fitted jackets or cropped sweaters.
-Wear it in Winter

A. Layering is key when it comes to extending our wardrobe from winter to spring and summer. Consider layering with a turtleneck sweater, v-neck top or even a collared button down shirt - think chic preppy. Add a long necklace that dangles as long as the deep v of the dress for extra lengthening effect. In many cases, it all comes down to trial and error. So try on the sparkled turtleneck and if you like it then wear it. Confidence can win most style battles.

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