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    Spring fashion trends: Fashion advice to look eternally chic on a budget

    Update your wardrobe with key fashion trends on a budget.

    Update your wardrobe with key fashion trends on a budget

    Dear Sharon: My wardrobe isn’t very in. Last year, I had a major job change and to celebrate I got hooked on looking trendy. Now, my once trendy wardrobe from last season comes across as very dated and out of fashion. My budget won’t let me continue to shop around for new fashion trends each year either. Can you give me a few good ideas that will make my existing wardrobe stylishly transition into this spring? Thanks in advance! —Spring Ahead, (Ft. Leonard Wood, MO)

    Dear Spring Ahead: There’s a huge difference in dressing trendy and stylishly on trend. To paraphrase the legendary fashion diva, Diana Vreeland, “fashion comes and goes, but style endures.”

    Super trendy fashion charges in and out of vogue at the blink of an eye. There’s nothing wrong with being trendy, but you can’t realistically build an entire wardrobe around rapid fire fads. Adding a quick dose of the hottest trend of the moment is fabulously fun—without a dash of something fresh, fashion would be terribly, terribly boring. But always remember that super trendy styles have a very distinct expiration date and once they’re over, they are over! Hence, your suddenly out-of-date, but once super trendy, wardrobe from last year.
    Fashion Check List: What to buy for Spring to update your wardrobe.


    It can be difficult to discern what’s hot only for this fashion second and what new styles represent the ebb and flow of how fashion evolves and will ultimately have some staying power. One of the easiest ways to predict what is destined to be a blip of a fashion fad is to notice how suddenly a particular look is everywhere, everywither. If it appears that suddenly a kabillion fashionistas woke up wearing a fluorescent rainbow brassiere over their trench coats (this example is fashion fiction only), you can safely assume that a fluorescent rainbow brassiere is a wacky and super trendy gimmick that will be “in” for a brief fashion moment before it hits its (over)saturation point. If you want to ride this trendy bandwagon, go ahead– but buy a cheapie, disposable version at one of the great fast fashionretailers like H&M, Forever 21, or Target. Wear the quirky item a couple of times, have fun with the fad, and guiltlessly toss then it out since you only paid a few bucks for it—that’s what being trendy on a budget is all about.

    Being stylishly on trendmeans you have the smarts to continually update your core wardrobe with a select group of key styles to keep you looking modern. You understand how to tweak your wardrobe and rethink the way you wear certain pieces so that you always look fresh and never stale or dowdy. You avoid fashion ruts (shout out to the ladies still wearing twin sweater sets), dismiss stagnant style (khaki pleated trousers anyone?), and embrace modernity with an open eye as to what best suits your figure and lifestyle.

    You know how to spot a trend, like those enormous bug-eyed glasses that all the celebutants have been wearing, and modify it to a more timeless style, like flattering large frame glasses. And, you recognize when to ignore a faulty fashion fancy, like the never-fetching, Norma Desmond fortune teller turban trend. Down the road, you’ll look at a photo of yourself in that twist of fashion fate and swear you were suffering from a bad case of Turbantightus. Just say no to fashion victim inclinations!

    Adding key fashion items to your Spring wardrobe will keep you looking modern and chic on a realistic budget. One of the smartest ways of having style that endures is dressing in a classic way with a unique design twist— like the French chic style différence which makes you look stylish, distinct, and a cut above the rest.

    You’ll want these Spring Trends:

    – Wide leg trousers + white denim = 2 trends in 1— You already own a pair of straight or skinny leg jeans, so you don’t really “need” another pair. What you do need is a pair of white jeans to wear with a bright color top. Wide leg trousers are really happening, so make it a pair of full leg white jeans to double the style factor. Wanna new pair of skinny jeans? Opt for new cool color denim like royal blue, red, or purple.

    – A dress that shows off your waist— Those mini trapeze dresses are modern, but unless you are lean to begin with, you’ll end up looking like you’ve packed on a few too many during the winter. Go wild over shapely dresses that spotlight the new erogenous zone, your waist. In crisp cotton, well-draped jersey, or slippery silk, get at least one great dress from a knee length shirtdress, Grecian wrap, or obi style plunge that keeps you looking polished and curvyall at once. Prints were spotted all over the runways, but solids have more staying power and are far easier to mix and match. When you crave print, make it a graphic t-shirt.

    – Mini dress that doubles as a tunic— Super short mini dresses are fab on young, tone things, who know how to keep their thighs together when exiting a car. For the rest of us, get the look of a mini and the decorum of a lady by pairing micro tunics over leggings or skinny pants. Think volume of lean and you’ll continue to have the right proportions.

    – Something electric blue— Vivid color abounds this season. Add a splash of fuchsia, purple, acid yellow, Kelly green, or peacock to add punch to neutrals like black or tan. But the color that makes the strongest impact is electric blue—we haven’t seen royal blue look so regal since the eighties and the time is more than right for its color comeback.

    – The new neutrals— White takes over where black left off, especially when it has a pretty texture like eyelet or lace, but don’t discount black—it’s a suburb backdrop for those vivid colors.Safari chic has opened the way to the new neutrals- think of café au lait brown, stone, putty, and mushroom, dusty beige, and the return of taupe. What makes these tan family colors modern is the undercast of grey which creates a smoky and not paper bag beige. Short shorts are hot only if you can wear a micro mini with pizzazz. Get one pair of lean, fitted at the kneecity shorts in a new neutral—wear them with souped up wedges, gilt platforms, or bold hue ballerina flats.

    Fashion 911: Toss any remnant of baggy leg, khaki short shorts that are an abbreviated version of mom jeans….nasty.

    – Envelope clutch bag— We love our oversized hobos, slouch, and shoulderbags, but isn’t time to look a little more refined and less like a shellepping bag lady? Try a simple envelope or clutch bag forday or night. Almost every celebrity at recent red carpet events was seen with a diminutive clutch bag that put the exposure stamp on this fashion trend. For day, keep all your necessities in a fab envelope bag and then, tote that oversized bag if you really need to lug more.

    – Add something metallic, but not glitzy— Metallics are huge for spring, but never overtly glitzy or garish. Softer metals withless bling and more sheenare it. Opt for either silver or gold weathered patinas that spotlight a beautiful faux tan rather than overpowering and glaring metals of yesteryear. Too timid for metallic? Try a large goldtone pendant necklace that dangles past your cleavage.

    – Discover your natural waist with a wide belt – Enough with the hip belts… you have plenty to wear with your low rise old jeans. Get a smart, wider belt that sculpts your waist. It will add life to last season’s babydoll tops, and create a beautiful hourglass silhouette when cinching in a simple shirt dress. If you buy only one wide belt, make it patent leather! Plus, you’ll love a wide belt with next fall’s higher waist trousers.


    –March 28, 2007

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