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Q. I love shoes but since I’m still in school, I have a tight budget. I was ecstatic when I bought these affordable olive wooden wedges from Target! Even though I love them to death, I have no idea what to pair them with. Would they look better with pants or a dress? What about with tights?
- Wear With What?

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A. Your new stylish, budget bought wedges will work with skirts, dresses, slim cropped pants and even cuffed shorts. But no tights; these wedges are a warm weather sandal with too many open areas to pull off tights.

Q. I’m someone who is bottom heavy with a slight Buddha belly and muscular thighs, but a tiny waist. (I wear a 12 on the bottom, but usually a 6-8 on top) I love the way side-tie bikini bottoms are so forgiving and help hide any unsightly bulges in the hip area. However, everywhere I seem to go, the front is always super tiny, even if the back offers full coverage. My question is are there any side-tie bottoms out there that offer fuller coverage in the front?
- Cover my Front

A. Check out my latest swimwear style recipe for additional options, but I shopped for a few options specifically for you.

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1. Ruched Swim Bottom, $48 at martinandosa.com
2. Lux Racing Stripe Bikini Bottom, $29.99 at urbanoutfitters.com
3. Ralph Lauren Sport Skirted Halter Bikini, $87 at nordstrom.com
4. O’Neill Citrus Stripe Bottom, $44.50 at alloy.com

Q. I’m a stay-at-home mom of 2 little boys. I recently bought myself a nice pair of brown pinstripe pants on a splurge. They are the only nice pants I own that fit me. The last three “dressy” occasions I attended, my sister-in-law was in the mix of people. Is it terrible if I wear the same pants each time? Should I just tell her the situation? I typically spend my days in jeans. Over the last four years I have fluctuated between maternity clothes, post baby sizes (starting at 10) all the way to my current size 2. We’re planning on having another baby soon, so I don’t want to invest in too many “nice” clothes that I will rarely get to wear. Any ideas to mix it up?
- Same Pair

A. Don’t fret over wearing the same nice pants to several parties; men do it all the time with suits to the office. The best way to mix it up is to always wear a different top when seeing the same guests and choose eye-catching jewelry to additionally distract friends, particularly your sister-in-law. You don’t have to worry about size with jewelry so you can be a two or a ten and still wear a cool necklace.

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1. Diane von Furstenberg Austral Halter Top, $185 at saks.com
2. TOMMY HILFIGER Paisley Pleated Top, $59.50 at macys.com
3. Beach necklace, $64 at bananarepublic.com
4. Bubble necklace, $150 at jcrew.com
5. Subversive® for Target® Cameo Multi-Row Necklace, $59.99 at target.com

Q. I am so glad to have found your website. It is truly amazing, and you give great advice. I am going to be attending a 4-day conference soon, and towards the end of the conference, there will be a banquet for all of the attendees. The dress code is semi-formal and I have NO idea what to wear. I don’t really wear dresses, so any other options would be great.
- Not Knowing

A. You can vamp it up and look stylish without wearing a dress by pairing tuxedo-style pants with a fancy top.

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1. Diane von Furstenberg ‘Gavin’ Tuxedo Pants, $194.90 (sale) at nordstrom.com
2. Lafayette 148 Analisa Silk Blouse, $177.90 at saks.com
3. Robert Rodriguez Ruffle Top, $264 at eluxury.com
4. 3.1 Phillip Lim Leaf-Embroidered Blouse, $345 at eluxury.com
5. 3.1 Phillip Lim Draped-Sleeve Tee, $175 at eluxury.com

Q. I’m going to a formal military ball and unless I go buy a dress, I only have 3 long dresses choose from. Unfortunately, they’re all velvet dresses, although very thin material. One is long sleeved, one is short sleeved and the last has no sleeves. I live in Colorado and the evening will be cool to cold in temperature. What do you suggest?
- Long Dress

A. While Colorado still has some snow I hesitate to say go ahead and wear the velvet. Velvet is truly a late fall, winter fabric. And remember the ball will be indoors. Indoor formal events are a chance to wear a great dress with heels and not be expected to wear hosiery or covered toes.

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