Links You’ll Love

Fashion:

Want to try a new color combo this winter? Read what Beauty and the Budget has to say about Black & Brown.

Holiday decorating is upon us! Here are some tips for the experts on how to make your home festive: Harper’s Bazaar, Elle Decor, Real Simple & Vogue.

Marni for H&M! I’m excited, are you excited?

miranda kerr style, miranda kerr finn

Miranda Kerr’s street style looks these last few post-baby months have been downright phenomenal (exhibits A and B) and here’s yet another amazing one broken down by The Frugal Fashionista.

Not a dress girl? 5 Holiday Outfit Alternatives For the Anti-Dress Girl from FabSugar

Health/Fitness:

No More Excuses! The Hungry Hungry Hippie gives you tips & ideas for food prep for the weekend that will keep you well fed all week long.

NYT – Should We All Go Gluten-Free?

Gina from The Fitnessista shares her 2011 gift picks for everyone on your list and The Stylelist gives you the best Budgest Friendly Gifts. You can also check out the MCLV Gift Giving Guide here.

Five strength training exercises for beginners and five inner & outer thigh toning tips from FitSugar.

Skin care tips from Garance Dore here.

You may have heard me mention Brendan Brazier and his Thrive books in the past, I’m a really big fan of not only his written work but of his general approach to food and nutrition. The healthy food delivery system Fresh N’ Lean is now partnering with Brendan to develop a new line based on his recipes and healthy food principles called Thrive Foods Direct“Fresh ‘N Lean is not another quick fix or fad diet. We do not eliminate carbs or restrict calories. Our concept is really quite simple: prepare healthy, fresh, and delicious meals, without all the preservatives, additives, sodium, and sugar that Americans have come to accept as “normal,” and add the convenience of home/office delivery.”

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The British Are Coming! The British Are Coming!

Happy Friday! To celebrate, I say we look at pretty people getting all dressed up. And luckily for us, there were a couple glamorous, star-studded British events this past week with some very eye-catching looks worth mentioning.
 
2011 British Fashion Awards
 

Georgia May Jagger continued the Great Gatsby trend in pale, shimmery Julien Macdonald. I miiight have worn a sandal with a dress this delicate, but there's no denying she looks great here!

How can you not love a girl who can get away with flats at a black tie event? Alexa Chung looked adorably retro and chic in Christopher Kane.

 
Source (For Alexa & Georgia May)
 
There were two other looks at the 2011 British Fashion Awards that I – GASP – couldn’t make up my mind about… And you want to know what? They were both Matthew Williamson outfits. Go figure.
 

Olivia Palermo in Matthew Williamson

Source 

I should preface this by saying that I’m a little hesitant when it comes to fringe, especially high-octane fringe, but I couldn’t help gasping when I saw this dress. If it was floor length I think the fringe would be too much, but on a cocktail length frock its perfect. But my issue with this look is actually the styling… The hair is a bit severe, I think a gracefully swept back ponytail would have been perfect, and the shoes & clutch are waaay too busy. The key to pulling off this dress is maintaining a level  of simplicity with the rest of the look.

Poppy Delevigne in Matthew Williamson

 
Since I clicked back to this picture three times I decided that I should say something. It’s a beautiful dress and manages to suit her coloring even though strictly speaking I wouldn’t say those are her colors, and I like her simple accessories and loose braid. My issue? The fringe! I think without the small spots of straw-colored carpet fringe (and a little hemming) this would be a picture perfect look.
 
Moral of the story? I have zero hard & fast rules when it comes to fringe! 🙂
 
BAFTA Los Angeles 2011 Britannia Awards
 

Mr. Yelchin is doing quite well on the red carpet lately. What I really like is that he's not wearing boring suits, they all have subtle patterns, interesting fabrics or an embellishment of some sort that make them stand out. And one word. TAILORING.

This is everything that you want in an evening look, its stunning, head turning and fits Asha to a T. I also love the capsleeves and vintage silver earrings. Simply beautiful.

Felicity Jones looks fresh and young in this fitted Moschino with a ballerina skirt. I think her clutch and hair are the perfect touches, keeping the look minimally chic. (I'll be doing a post on Miss Jones next week so stick around if you'd like to see more of her!)

 
Source (BAFTA pictures)
 
Have a good weekend!
 
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Gym Goddess – Part IV

Welcome to the next installment of the How to Become a Gym Goddess series (if you’d like to catch up, here are Week 1, Week 2 & Week 3).

Week IV ended up being particularly busy so it was the perfect example of how to squeeze workouts in whenever and wherever you can. Whether you’re trying to get in shape, working on changes in your life to make yourself healthier or trying to maintain your existing fitness regime, you need to make a committment to your health. You need to prioritize yourself – your body, your health, your sanity – over other things in your life. I’m not saying that you should miss deadlines to log a little gym time, but you need to make an effort to put yourself first. There will always be something that comes up, a work assignment, a dentist appointment, an illness in the family… But you’re better equipped to handle what life throws at you if you’re healthy & well nourished.

Note: Check with a doctor before you begin a new fitness routine.

 

Day 1:

10 minute cardio warm up – moderate speed on stationary

3 Rounds

  • Plank arm raises – lift each arm 10 times
  • Bench step ups – 10 each leg, knee up
  • Back lunge w/ medicine ball twist – step back into a lunge & twist holding a weighted medicine ball out w/ straight arms, twist to each side 10 times

15 minute cardio warm down

Stretching

Day 2: Medicine ball workout! Grab a 4, 6 or 8 pound ball and let’s go! This is inspired by the workouts featured in the November Women’s Health – Body By Anna (in the magazine only) & Get Fit in Only 15 Minutes. And if you’d like a little more motivation check out model Julie Henderson w/ fitness guru David Kirsch using medicine balls over at Modelinia. Even models aren’t perfect!

10 minute cardio warm up

3 Rounds:

  • 20 Wall sits w/ rotation
  • 20 High-Low chop
  • 20 squats w/ overhead ball raise
  • 20 Russian twists
  • 20 bicycles

10 minute cardio warm down

Day 3: A quickie inspired by The Fitnessista. Even if your schedule is as crazy as Liz’s has been there’s no excuse for slacking off, in the long run you’ll be glad you took a few minutes for yourself.

  • 5 minutes cardio of choice
  • 30 seconds of jumping jacks
  • 30 seconds of high knees
  • 30 seconds of plie squats (plie low, jump & bring legs together and arms straight up)
  • 30 seconds mountain climbers
  • 30 seconds push ups
  • 30 seconds burpees

Day 4: HIIT

5 minute warm up

  • 30 seconds as fast as possible
  • 1 minute 30 seconds recovery – moderate speed
  • 30 seconds as fast as possible
  • 1 minute 30 seconds recovery – moderate speed

Repeat for 15 minutes of intervals

5 minute cool down (i.e. walking on a treadmill etc)

Results: This fourth week was really a testament to Liz’s dedication, with work and family issues popping up all almost daily she put forth a lot of effort to make sure that her workouts came together. Once you get into a routine and start to reap the benefits of regular exercise, it’s a great motivator to keep things going. So don’t let yourself get led off course by your busy life – if you make the time, you’ll see the results.

Joining a fitness program or hiring a trainer can be a great way to go if you’re interested in changing your fitness regime and aren’t quite sure where to start. Finding the right program or trainer is important though, not all gyms and trainers are created equal. Check out these suggestions from some of the experts for how to find the perfect fit: PrecisionNutrition, FitSugar, The Fitnessista and The Huffington Post. Also, when to break up with your personal trainer, something else you should definitely keep in mind if you decide to go for one-on-one sessions.

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Style File: Emma Roberts & Holiday Dressing

If you’re looking for a chic holiday outfit  take some inspiration from this Victorian style black and white look that Emma Roberts graced us with a few nights ago.

Source

In case you want to check out the original pairings and runway styling these separates are from the Temperly London Spring 2012 Ready-To-Wear collection.

This look is a great alternative to a traditional cocktail dress for your holiday parties this season. The black and white color scheme keeps it chic and simplistic, the velvet skirt and embellishments on the top add some much-needed flare and the bright bag takes it up a notch and makes it festive.

There are a couple of ways to go with the top of this look,  you can try a simple white lace shirt, a high-neck sleeveless top like Emma wore or keep the Victorian theme going with a cold-weather approved long-sleeved embellished top.

Top Left: Shell Top With Floret Embellishment - $61 (sale price) @ Asos.com, Top Right: Hanky Panky Ariel Lace Turtleneck - $65 @ Nordstrom, Center: Zebra Lace Embellished Top - $75 @ Topshop, Bottom Left: INC Sleeveless Mock Turtleneck Halter Top - $30 (sale price) @ Macys & Bottom Right: Disk Sequin Mesh Top - $65 @ Asos.com

A slinky black velvet maxi skirt is perfect for this winter and a great way to spice up what could otherwise be a lackluster black & white look.
 

Top Left: T by Alexander Wang Panne Velvet Long Skirt - $315 @ Shopbop.com, Top Right: Velvet Maxi Skirt - $130 @ J Jill, Bottom Left: Maxi Skirt - $50 @ Victoria's Secret & Bottom Right: Velvet Maxi Skirt - $60 @ Soma Intimates

 
Emma really emphasised the gothic romance of this outfit with her gorgeous drop earrings, which complement the intricacy of the look without taking it over the top.
 

Top Left: Eliot Danori Autumn Array Cubic Zirconia Drop Earrings - $70 @ Macys, Top Right: Badgley Mischka Multi-shaped Stone Crystal Chandeliers - $170 @ Charm & Chain, Center: Dana Kellin Silver Quartz Faceted Pear Shaped Drop Earrings - $225 @ Endless.com, Bottom Left: 2028 Aurora Borealis Bead Drop Earrings - $25 @ Macys & Bottom Right: Badgley Mischka Jet Crystal Cluster Earrings - $95 @ Charm & Chain

And a festive clutch in a bright holiday color is the perfect final touch to finish off this look. Whether you choose red, green, gold or silver, be sure to pick something that catches the eye and doesn’t blend in with the black and white of the outfit.
 

Top Left: Tusk Women's Donington Bag - $110 @ Endless.com, Top Right: Embossed Telegram Clutch - $60 @ Madewell, Center: BCBGeneration Bella Foldover Clutch - $70 @ Macys, Bottom Left: Kate Spade Portola Valley Fae - $75 @ Zappos Couture & Bottom Right: Suede Envelope Clutch - $30 @ American Apparel

 
While you can’t see Emma’s shoes in these pictures I would go with a pair of black peep toes or a simple strappy sandal in black or a dark metallic shade (think about matching the earrings or a piece of clothing, not the clutch). And be sure to check the shoes with the skirt before you step outside, straps and buckles may catch on the velvet and cause issues later in the night if you’re not careful.
 
Now slap on some red lipstick and head out the door!
 
And in case you’re curious how the designer herself might mix-n-match the black & white pieces of her collection check this out. Seeing Alice Temperly here is a really great example of how you can take the basic idea for a look and make it your own or – as is the case here – make it more mature and more appropriate for a certain setting. By wearing long sleeves and cinching her waist with a jeweled belt she makes the look as elegant and sophisticated as Emma makes it youthful.
 
 
 
You can also check out past MCLV Style File looks below:
 
 
If you have a look that you’d like to get a breakdown for feel free to email me.
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Looks of the Week

While I have a couple great everyday looks to share with you this week, there were also some great ideas for holiday dressing – for both men & women. If you need some inspiration for your festive frocks this season definitely take a look.

Julie Bowen spiced up a great fitting sweater dress by finding one with metallic stripes. If you're going to try a similar look, definitely keep the shoes & accessories minimal so the dress does the talking.

 

Camilla Belle looked striking in this sparkly pink number. The black belt & shoes keep it from being too Holiday Barbie, which is good to keep in mind if you're in the mood for a bright frock.

 

If you're bored with traditional ties and want a standout look for your holiday office party, try a contrasting bow tie like Justin Timberlake showed off at the GQ party.

Anton Yelchin looked great in a muted plaid suit. This is a great option if you're bored by the solid black & navy suits in your closet, try out a plaid or pinstripe this season.

 

Kerry Washington looked chic & festive in this shiny shift dress, a great way to get a head turning look for the season without showing too much skin.

 
Source (for all GQ party pics)
 

Nicole Richie stunned in silver Halston at her House of Harlow launch. The bright clutch is the perfect way to spice up this look and compliment the dress.

 
Need some street style inspiration for between your flirty party frocks?
 

Parfait pour Paris! I love their jackets and overall put together-ness. She's a little bit hippie chic in her floppy hat and slouchy boots and he's a little bit hipster in his slim jeans and scarf.

 

This is a great Fall look captured by The Sartorialist, I especially like the ruffle-collared blouse with the pounded gold necklace combination.

 
 

This Parisian look from The Sartorialist shows you a chic and simplistic way to wear various shades of brown, black and grey. Layers layers layers!

 
Have a great Monday, I’ll be back tomorrow with a Holiday Dressing Style File you wont want to miss!
 
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