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Q. I’m hoping you can help me! In 2 weeks, I am taking a trip to a nearby amusement park with my husband and family. We are staying overnight and spending the entire day at the park, and i want to look cute but I must be casual and practical. In the past couple of months, I have gained about 10 lbs and I am no longer comfortable in tight fitting tops - an adjustment I am still getting used to. Short shorts are also a no-no! I appreciate any help in helping me to feel stylish and comfortable, since I am at a loss as to what to wear! Thank you so much!!

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A. I’m glad to hear you want to look stylish for a day at the amusement park with the family. Anything besides the oversized t-shirts, baggy shorts and athletic shoes Americans tend to wear is a refreshing change in my book! That being said, it’s also essential that you are dressed comfortably in clothing that allows you to have fun. Unfortunately, that means that a cute dress or skirt is off the table, since you don’t want to risk flashing people while enjoying the free fall roller coasters and aerial swings!

Since you’re also looking to conceal a little extra weight, my suggestion is to choose a pair of lean (not baggy) flat front Bermuda shorts that hit right above your knee, or a pair of cropped cargo pants. Pair these with a comfortable, cute and loose fitting t-shirt like the ones shown below. Add a pair of sandals you can walk for hours in and you’ve got an easy, cute and functional look for a day at the park. Have fun!

Q. I am not too old, 49, but now I hear from my daughter, 26, that wearing pantyhose are out of style, and she never wears them, not even in the dead of winter, because only old grandmas wear them. Is this true? This past winter I decided to just wear pants to the office and not look silly wearing a skirt with no panty hose, in the below zero New England weather, however, I would like the option of wearing a suit with a skirt in the winter. What is your advice on panty hose or no panty hose? Thanks.

A. In the fashion world, hosiery tends to come in and out of style. However, whether to go bare-legged or not is more than just about what’s “in”. If you feel more comfortable in hosiery when the weather is cool, then by all means go for it. Regardless of trends, you can always opt for ultra sheer nude hosiery that matches your skin tone or opaque tights.

That being said, hosiery is very much in style for fall - aren’t you lucky! The Fall 2009 runways showed everything from sheer hosiery to funky patterns, prints and embellishments from virtually every designer. Here’s some proof of hosiery’s fabulousness for your daughter:

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left to right: Collette Dinnigan, Elie Saab, Limi Feu, Chanel, Valentino, Stella McCartney - photos courtesy of style.com

Q. I just bought a long, single-breasted raincoat that didn’t come with a belt and wondered if I could add a belt to it? If so, what sort of belt should I look for? It’s stone colored with a yellow floral lining.

A. Whether your coat comes with a belt or not, adding your own belt is a great way to give your coat come personality. Wide belts tend to work the best with most coats, but you can also try experimenting with skinny belts or even scarf ties, depending on how lightweight your coat is. Here are some looks to consider for your stone colored coat with the yellow floral lining:

Q. I’ve been seeing a lot of thick, strappy sandals and gladiators in magazines lately. I’m not ready to join the gladiator trend just yet, so I was thrilled to find this alternative. I just purchased these t-strap platform pumps, but I haven’t got a clue what to wear them with! Do you have any suggestions?

Lauren Ralph Lauren Women's Sheila Sandal

A. These Lauren Ralph Lauren “Sheila” sandals were a very wise purchase. Not only can you wear them now, but you can wear them in the fall when the weather cools with a pair of tights. And they will be in style far longer than trendy gladiators.

What to wear them with? Everything! Dresses, jeans, pants, shorts, skirts - you name it. Your possibilities are endless, but here are a few ideas for inspiration:




Q. I bought a pair of linen colored linen pants. Can you help me figure out what color shirt to wear? For example, can I do white even though the pants are more “Natural” in color? Or should I do a brown. And what about shoes? I have a great pair of bronze/bone slingbacks that look great with the pant, but again, don’t know what color shirt to wear with them.

A. The great thing about a natural colored linen pant is that it looks great with EVERYTHING. Crisp white paired with natural linen is a classic chic look, add in brown and bronze and you’ve got the timeless “safari” mix of hues. In addition to this neutral mix, natural linen looks great with pale blush colors, black and brights like turquoise, red, yellow, green, pink and orange, to name a few. Here is some inspiration for mixing colors with natural:

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