StyleBakery.com | Ask The Style Chefs

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Q. What are some low-cost, lightweight, pretty, airy (not clingy) knee-length (or shorter) white dresses for this spring and summer?

A. When the weather warms up, there’s nothing we love slipping into more than a summery white dress. We found many options for you under $100.


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Q. Can I wear a turquoise silk/satin dress with hot pink platforms of the same fabric? I really don’t want to wear gold or silver shoes, so boring and expected. I think the contrasting colors look fun and sexy together. And, if I can get away w/ these colors, the real question is, what color wrap can I wear w/o looking like a crayon?

A. You can definitely wear your hot pink shoes with a turquoise dress, in fact, mixing colors is a big trend this season. The key to mixing colors successfully is to pair bold colors with other bold colors and pale colors with similarly pale colors. In other words, a pale pink shoe would not work as well as a bright pink shoe with your bright blue dress. Mixing in a third color can be tricky, so it’s best to keep your wrap neutral: ivory, white, gold, silver, nude, etc.

Q. I bought this little dress for an upcoming wedding that I will attend. How do I pull the look together with accessories without going over the top and looking too trendy? I was hoping to wear a pair of nude or beige shoes. What about a necklace or bracelet? Can the style chefs help me whip up a winning (and timeless) combo?

A. Colorful, printed and asymmetrical - a trio of trends in one chic little dress! Let the dress be the star of your look and choose neutral accessories in colors like nude, bone and gold. Skip the necklace (too fussy with the asymmetrical neckline) and opt for dramatic drop earrings and a chic gold cuff instead. Gold or nude shoes and a neutral evening clutch complete the look.

91P1003_10_b.jpegQ. I’ve been eyeing the Siwy camilla cut-off shorts in white, but they are very heavily distressed and I am concerned that they won’t hold together after more than a few washes in the washing machine. Do you have any thoughts on the heavily distressed denim trend? Is the trend likely to last? Will heavily distressed denim fall apart super fast?

A. These cut-off shorts are super hot right now, having been worn by such celebs as Nicole Richie, Ashley Olsen, Kate Moss and Vanessa Hudgens. A cute, casual style, they look great with loose tees and blouses.

True, heavily distressed denim is very trendy right now, but it doesn’t show signs of fading (ha!) any time soon. We say, if you’ve been eyeing these shorts, then go for it. And when they do eventually go out of style, they’ll still look great worn to the beach.

As for caring for your distressed denim, most items are specially treated so they won’t fall apart with normal wear. When washing them, it’s best to turn them inside out and wash on delicate cycle (or better yet, hand wash) and hang them dry. Don’t put them in the dryer!

Siwy Camilla Cut Off Shorts in White $159 at chickdowntown.com. Get 10% off with coupon code: VIP10

Q. I got engaged recently and my fiance I have decided to invite our friends and family to a small and casual reception in the late summer.

In light of the current economic conditions and our desire to keep things as simple as possible, I’ve decided to purchase a white (or whitish shade) dress that can be worn for other occasions in lieu of an expensive gown that can only be worn once.

My conservative family, however, has a big influence on my dress choice - while sleeveless is okay, anything strapless or with spaghetti straps is out of the question (one shoulder is probably pushing it too!). Do you have any suggestions that are around knee length (a little higher is okay) in a fabric dressier than cotton or a jersey blend? I’m struggling to find a classy and simple dress with unique details that won’t rock the boat. Please help - I would really appreciate any of your suggestions!

A. We love the idea of a small, casual wedding reception and your desire to wear a simple white dress that can be worn again. Not only is this practical, but it is the epitome of recessionista chic. The search for an affordable dress that is not cotton, not spaghetti straps and not strapless, that is special enough to be worn by a bride was tougher than we thought! We were able to find some great options for you though, so take a look:


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