February 24, 2010

ask micki: how to mix prints

photo courtesy of Micki Turner

The day I started my first corporate job I had absolutely nothing stylish to wear. I had recently returned from living on the beach in Chile and the only clothes in my closet were sundresses, bathing suits, and flip flops. My mother took one look at my day-one wardrobe options and said, “we need to get you an appointment with Micki as soon as possible.” Micki Turner is a Fashion Consultant, Image Consultant, and Personal Shopper. She also happens to be the mother of one of my best friends. Micki has fantastic style and an incredible knack for understanding how to develop her clients’ wardrobes to fit their different personalities and lifestyles.

After a day of shopping with Micki, I went home with a foundation of wardrobe staples that all work together and have been in my weekly rotation ever since: a timeless gray trench, the perfect black patent leather pumps, figure flattering boyfriend cardigans, wide-leg jeans and cords that transition seamlessly from day to night, and a new sense of my personal style. I learned the value of investing in key pieces and how to accessorize to keep up with current trends. Now when I’m shopping I often ask myself, “what would Micki think about this?”

I decided Micki would be the perfect person to help me with my latest fashion dilemma—how to mix prints. I love this spring trend but it’s not an easy look to pull off. Here’s what Micki had to say about mixing prints:

“We all see outfits using mixed prints and patterns in the stores, magazines and runways and they look so creative and interesting.  Trying this in your own closet or shopping can be disastrous.  You can look like you don’t have a clue how to dress instead of the sophisticated fashionista you are aiming to look like.”

“Here are some tips:

-Try and stay with one designer and season. The colors will be in harmony and work well together.  You will not have to figure it out yourself.

-The pieces need to tie together. The background color on one piece may be the main color on the second piece. Also, look at the lining, stitching, buttons on one piece. This is your guide for color, pattern and other details that will work on the second piece.

-It is easiest if one piece is more patterned than the other piece.

-Fabrics of different weights work well. A knit sweater can have a different print than a silk skirt for example.  When the fabrics are the same weight it can be harder to get it right.   The Dries outfit would be hard to figure out on your own.  Dries got it right.”

For more fashion tips from Micki Turner, become a fan of her Facebook page. Or visit her website for information about her services at www.mickiturner.com

February 22, 2010

spring ahead: wedges


Over the rainy weekend, I began the search for a pair of everyday spring sandals. I think I’ve narrowed it down to wedges because they’re perfect for a girl like me who loves to wear heels but can’t handle the pain. Plus they look great with two of my favorite spring looks: loose, soft pants rolled up and flirty, full skirts. Here are a few pairs from my initial search. Once again, Camper (top right) has a bunch of cute, comfortable, and well-priced options in their spring collection. I’ll be posting more of my favorite spring sandal trends in the next few weeks so stay tuned.

wedge by elisabethcarr featuring Chloé
Items in this set:
Wood and canvas wedges, $650
Chloe Cork wedge sandals, $595
See by Chloe Canvas wedge sandals, $335
Wakana Strappy Wedge Sandals, $20
RACHAEL by Camper - Sandal in soft flesh-toned leather with buckle,…

February 19, 2010

miami fashion: all saints

Another great shop we visited in Miami was All Saints. The company is UK based and has recently opened US locations in New York, LA, and Miami. There is an amazing wall in the store made out of vintage sewing machines and the style throughout is sort of Mexican artist meets leather-clad rockstar. Check out Monica (below) in her hot studded leather jacket and awesome fringed ankle boots from All Saints.

February 17, 2010

miami fashion: tuccia di capri sandals

Last weekend I took my first trip to Miami with my boyfriend and our friends Monica and Adam. Monica’s family has a condo on South Beach so we were in the heart of all the action. We had a great time (fabulous restaurants, shopping, beach time, people watching) and I’ll post more photos soon. The weekend was a little chilly so the town was more bundled up than normal and I wasn’t able to find many over-the-top outfits to share. But we did run across some really unique stores, one of them being Tuccia di Capri, a sandal company specializing in custom-made designs inspired by the styles of the Italian Riviera. You can choose the heel height, leather color, strap width, and style. They take phone orders so even San Francisco girls can create their own Italian/Miami flair.

February 12, 2010

meet the designer: christina ebner

This interview with Christina Ebner will kick off a new “column” on mission:closet—Meet the Designer. Christina is a Florida native who moved to San Francisco to attend FIDM. She now designs clothes for Old Navy so I asked her some questions about spring trends, shopping on a budget, and wardrobe staples.

EC: Which spring trends are you most excited about?
CE: Woven tunics - throw one on over leggings or jeans and a pair of cute ballet flats. Also, feminine appliques and ruffles - you’ll find them on knit and woven tops and sweaters. Fall and Winter were so dark and serious; it’s nice to lighten things up and feel girly again. Also, destructed denim will continue to be big. Choose a boyfriend silhouette, or a relaxed slim silhouette if you don’t want something so  roomy.
EC: What are the big colors to buy this season?
CE: Grey is really trending right now. Dark greys, light greys, pretty much any shade….. grey denim, grey boyfriend sweaters…it’s in everything. It’s a great new neutral.
EC: Do you have any tips for wearing runway styles on a budget?
CE: Focus on the big must have items for the season and buy items you can use in multiple outfits. For example, you’ll get a lot of mileage out of a boyfriend blazer - wear it with jeans and a tee during the day, and over a party dress at night. Skip smaller trends that will die out quickly, or trends that don’t work well with your body type.
EC: What are your favorite pieces in Old Navy’s spring line?
In the Women’s department, I love the new Chambray Drop-Waist Shirt Dress. This is something you can wear by itself, or over leggings. Chambray is a big trend for this spring-you’ll be seeing it a lot.

Also - we just came out with the Rockstar Skinny Denim Legging. These are AMAZING! They come in black or dark indigo. Only sold in the store, and guaranteed to sell out soon. Don’t be scared by the looks of the small sizes - they are super stretchy.

I design for the Plus and Maternity department, so for the Plus-sized girl, check out our Embellished Scoop Neck Tee - it has translucent beading on the front that is right on trend. 

EC: What are three items every girl should own?
CE: 1. Skinny jeans - I don’t care what size you are, 2 or 20, skinny denim is a trend everyone can wear.  2. A sexy pair of heels 3. A fun statement necklace - This will dress up any outfit. You can wear it to the office or out at the bar. 
EC: What’s the one item in your closet you couldn’t live without?
CE: My black boyfriend cardigan. I layer it over everything. You can spend a lot of money on a designer one, but I got mine at Old Navy and it looks fantastic.
EC: What’s the one item you probably could live without but you just had to have?
CE: I bought these black strappy Michael Kors heels with a large zipper down the center front. Totally sexy, and totally uncomfortable, but they look awesome. They were a splurge to go with a black cocktail dress for my engagement party. I don’t feel too bad though because I’ve worn them since with black leggings to the office.

February 10, 2010

Saturday My Love

This Saturday Candystore Collective, one of my favorite Mission boutiques, is hosting a Valentine’s event called Saturday My Love: A Day of Fragrance, Fashion, Cupcakes and Cocktails. Perfumer Yosh Han of YOSH Olfactory Sense will be leading two workshops (2:15-3 and 3:15-4) about aromatic materials and perfume design. You’ll learn how certain fragrances release energy, evoke emotion, and awaken your chakras. YOSH perfumes will be available at special prices and the workshops will be followed by a Fleur’t lingerie trunk show and sale. Plus enjoy the Mission Minis Cupcake Cart and delicious cocktails from famous SF Bartender, Matty Conway. Suggested donation is $20 for a single session, $35 for both. To RSVP email hello@candystorecollective.com.

For more information check out the event page on Facebook.

February 8, 2010

clothing swap

Over the weekend my friend Elena hosted a clothing swap and brunch for a group of girlfriends. We each brought over a bag (or bags) of clothes we wanted to exchange for something we’d actually wear. We laid out everything in the living room, grouped by article of clothing, and then started perusing and trying on. I’d heard of swaps where everyone presents the items they brought then you go through a bartering system, but we went for a more casual, free-for-all approach and it worked really well. I went home with a pink silk shrug, a black strappy dress, a dove gray scarf, and a pastel argyle sweater!

February 5, 2010


Last week my friend Shari Doherty tweeted about these scarves and I’ve been on the website daily ever since trying to decide which color to buy. Necklushes are multistrand infinity scarves, basically a bunch of large loops held together with one adjustable knot. They come in different sizes, colors, and patterns. Buy a longer one and wrap it around 3 times for a cold winter day, or one with fewer strands (a Necklushie) for a lightweight spring scarf. Each Necklush is made by hand and organic cotton is available in many styles. Here’s video featuring the many ways to wear a Necklush.

February 3, 2010

spring ahead: chambray


Chambray, also known as cambric, is one of my favorite textiles as of late. I could probably wear my J. Crew chambray shirt every single day—the boyfriend fit and soft fabric make it so comfortable plus it’s timeless and seasonless. Lately I’ve been wearing it over a pair of black jeggings or tucked into a skirt with ribbed tights. In the spring and summer I’ll pair it with my white jeans. While a button down is a great staple, there is a variety of chambray pieces coming out right. Try a shirt dress and a bright belt or a skirt with a vibrant floral top.

Chambray by elisabethcarr featuring Pink Studio shoes
Items in this set:
Marc by Marc Jacobs Slubby chambray shirt dress, $300
Women - shirts - Selvedge chambray shirt - J.Crew, $98
The J. Crew Chambray Shirt: The GQ Eye: GQ, $30
Pink Studio “Jona” oxford pumps in tan, $50

February 1, 2010

inspiration boards

Yesterday I refreshed my inspiration board. When I first started mission:closet I made myself a huge bulletin board for my room out of foam core and muslin. I’ve posted magazine clippings throughout the season to help me get ideas for blog posts and for my own wardrobe. Above is a chunk of the board with winter styles. I can’t show you spring yet because it would give away too much about what’s coming up on mission:closet! But I will tell you that I’m looking at a lot of patterns, khaki, denim, pastels, and bright accessories.

I’ve also been playing with Polyvore for inspiration boards. It’s a great tool for pulling together online photos to achieve a look or feel. Warning: it’s highly addictive. I’ve been using it to help a friend find shoes for her wedding and I could seriously do it for hours. Below is a board I created during a rainy day when I was craving some frozen yogurt and sunshine.

Fro yo in spring
Fro yo in spring by elisabethcarr featuring Etro scarves
Items in this set:
Women’s Jean Jacket - Light Vintage Destroyed Wash, $40
Women’s skirts - a-line - Cotton Nico skirt - J.Crew, $60
Women’s shoes: Max Studio Cane - Tobacco, $70
Deena & Ozzy Patent Oxford Wedge, $58
Marc by Marc Jacobs Sasha leather shoulder bag, $500