StyleBakery.com | Ask The Style Chefs

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Q. I love your blog so much- the personality is really fun and you have great style. Anyways, I am in love with almost every Frye boot, but I don’t want to spend $400. Do you know of any good (cheap) look-a-likes to any of their riding boots? I especially love the Campus 12R in Saddle, but I could go for anything.

A. Hey, thanks fashfile, keep up the good work with your blog too! Frye boots are famous for their classic styling, comfort and super rugged durability. They look great with everything from jeans to dresses and only seem to improve with age. So if you’re really dreaming of owning a pair, we think it’s worth the $228 investment and the years of pleasure you’ll get from wearing them.

That being said, if you’re set on saving some cash, here are a few boots that are similar in style:

14789044_21_b.jpgEquestrian Leather Boot, $125 at urbanoutfitters.com V276869.jpg
Na Na Leather Riding Boot, $149 at victoriassecret.com
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Bronx Footwear Linus Mid Calf Slouch Riding Boot, $150 at shopbop.com
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PALLADIUM Women’s Hasselt
$135.99 at shoes.com
panthems.pngQ. I have some dress pants I purchase about 6 months ago that need to be hemmed. I’m 5 ft tall and will be wearing them with heels, the problem is I don’t know where the hem should hit the heel and the front of the pants.

A. When hemming pants, visit the tailor wearing shoes with the heel height you will wear most often. When hemmed, the pants should touch your instep in front and cover 1/2 to 3/4 of your heel in the back.
Q. I am loving this season’s focus on belts but I am having a lot of trouble adding this stylish detail to my wardrobe. I see beautiful belts everywhere I shop but the small is always too large to fit around my 27” waist. The petite stores near me seem to only carry ‘mom-style’ utilitarian belts. I want to wear patent leather and double-wrap belts too!! Can you suggest a store or online sites that have stylish belts for smaller waists?

A. It wasn’t easy, but we found a slew of belts to suit your small waist (see below). If you still can’t find what you’re looking for, you can always bring a size XS or S belt to a shoemaker and ask him to add an extra hole for you. Or look for Ring style belts that don’t have any holes at all and are easy to adjust.

Q. This question goes against every fashion column I have ever read, but I have to ask it. Why does everyone suggest that curvy women wear boot cut jeans? I have a large chest, small waist and large hips and cannot for the life of me find jeans that look good and don’t have a huge gap in the back and/or expose things that I don’t want exposed whenever I sit down. There has been a recent trend towards “curvy” jeans which fit me slightly better than most, but the problem is that they are almost always boot cut or flair. Every column I read says that curvy women should wear boot cut jeans to even out the curves, but I find that I look like a Coke bottle in this style. In fact, I don’t think that it is particularly flattering on anyone. How out of touch with reality am I?

A. Finding a flattering pair of jeans is a constant challenge for many women, especially those with curves. As a general rule, boot cut jeans are the most universally flattering for women with your figure. However, it’s important that you look for jeans with a slight boot cut, not a wide flair - this can make all the difference and help to avoid the Coke bottle silhouette you fear. Also, experiment with straight cut styles, and even skinny jeans worn with knee high boots. Tapered jeans in general are a big no-no for women with hips and thighs.

Compare the styles below: on the left is a flaired jean (not so flattering), in the center is a slight boot cut (flattering) and on the right is a straight leg style (also flattering). All jeans are from lanebryant.com

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As for finding jeans that fit your smaller waist, this may prove to be even more of a challenge. If the curvy cut jeans that are available aren’t fitting well, then your best bet is to take the jeans to a tailor and have the waist made smaller. A small price to pay for a great fitting jean!
Q. I am a confessed shoe-addict who adores heels (especially because they elevate my 5’5” frame) and can’t pass up a pair of stilleto pumps. Unfortunately, I will soon be starting a job where I will be doing a LOT of walking, and also spend a good deal of time in scrubs. Do you have any suggestions for cute but comfortable heels for the office (not too high) as well as shoes to wear with scrubs that AREN’T Crocs?

A. Congrats on the new job! We’re always in search of cute but comfortable heels for the office. Generally, a round toe and a stacked 2 or 2 1/2 inch heel will be your most comfortable. Also, look for shoes that have added cushioning, like our favorite Cole Haans with Nike Air technology. Here are some stylish, comfortable, cushioned office picks:
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1. Cole Haan ‘Jena Air’ Mary Jane, $295 at nordstrom.com
2. Taryn by Taryn Rose Devour, $225 at piperlime.com
3. Gentle Souls Instant Hit, $265 at piperlime.com
4. Aerosoles Role Play, $89 at piperlime.com

As for what to wear with scrubs, I’m not really sure what the rules are here, but I assume you can’t wear sneakers. Though not the best looking, I’ve seen many medical staffers wearing Merrells. Here are a few comfortable options that may work for you, depending on the dress code at your workplace:
pl501622-00vliv01.jpg _5664135.jpg ComfortBallet.png Shoes_iAEC1042503.jpg Shoes_iAEC1042546.jpg
1. Naturalizer Cresson, $65 at piperlime.com
2. Cole Haan ‘Air Bria’ Mary Jane, $165 at nordstrom.com
3. Leather Comfort Ballet, $21.99 at landsend.com
4. MERRELL Women’s Plaza MJ, $89.99 at shoes.com
5. MERRELL Women’s Encore Groove, $74.99 at shoes.com

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