Four It Items for Spring 05

March 23rd, 2005

Many fashion editors publish lists of It Items…just check Lucky, InStyle and the like. What makes this one different, and why is this one worth your time?

I like to recognize that while some fashion obsessions come and go, other trends have more longevity. I present to you my four picks of the season. These are carefully selected items that I believe will last you beyond the warm days of this Spring and Summer. Stuff that you can wear for the foreseeable future without people thinking/saying, “that’s So Last Season.” Clothes that you can incorporate into your wardrobe and bring out next year, and the year after, guilt free!

So without further ado, I present to you…

The Cropped Jacket: I love cropped jackets in blazer form, bomber form, and motorcycle jacket form. And that’s not just because I’m petite and the cropped jacket flatters my proportions. Cropped jackets are Versatile. And I adore versatility. The cropped jacket works nicely with a full skirt (see below), for a modern take on the Dior New Look. It also looks great with a thin-cut cropped pant. However, the difference in volume proportions also makes the pairing of a cropped jacket with baggy pants visually appealing. However, unless you’re shaped like a model, be careful to not take the proportion play too far.

BCBG Cropped Jacket
BCBG Spring 05 | Courtesy of Style.com

What I like most about the cropped jacket, however, is its inherent affinity towards layering. You don’t have to pair the cropped jacket with a similarly proportioned top—it’s ok to have the shirt show from underneath this jacket. In fact, it’s more visually interesting. Think of this as a more sophisticated form of the tee shirt and tank top layering that Everybody and their Mother has been doing for the last year.

The White Tank: By itself, or layered, the white tank is a wardrobe staple that will be getting a lot more play this season. For a layered look that’s less Summer 04 and more Right Now, try layering tanks of different textures. I call this Layering, version 2.0. To get a more sophisticated look, for example, try pairing your plain jersey or baby rib tank from last summer with a new one that is more transparent and gauzy. Also remember that the cut of the tank is key—pick ones that flatter your neckline. Gently sloping scoopnecks are generally flattering, as are racerback tanks that show off your shoulderblades. Exaggerated racerback silhouettes are on my hotlist (coming soon to a sidebar near you!).

Narciso Rodriguez Tank
Narciso Rodriguez Spring 05* | Courtesy of Style.com

The Full Skirt: I just can’t get enough. Loved the full skirt last year, and still Love them now. They can camouflage heavy upper thighs, make your waist appear smaller (yay), and some will even skim over wide hips. My word of caution to you, however, lies in the length of the skirt. Have you ever noticed that some skirts make you look fabulous, and others make you look awkward—even if they’re of the same or a similar style and cut? Chances are, the difference lies in the skirt length.

Marc Jacobs Full Skirt
Marc Jacobs Spring 05 | Courtesy of Style.com

For most people, a skirt that ends at or right above the knee is of the most flattering length. Generally, if you can, avoid skirt lengths that hit mid calf—this tends to be more unflattering. To find Your Ideal Skirt Length, put on a long skirt that goes to your ankles. Standing in front of a full-length mirror, slowly raise the hemline of the skirt until you find the length that makes you think, “that looks great on me!” At that point, your legs will appear slimmer, and you’ll look and feel better proportioned. After this discovery, go out and hem your skirts of unflattering lengths to this Ideal Length. You’ll be glad you did it.

The Baggy Pant: The key here is to not go overboard. When I say baggy pants, I’m not talking about the pants a “cool” teenaged boy from the late 90s wore as he walked down the street with his pants sagging and boxers showing. Aigh. I’m talking about a more boyish, looser cut in a classic pant style. A nice wide legged pant is a clean interpretation of this trend, and one that is quite flattering—especially on women with a larger posterior. To mix things up a bit, you can even toss on some utility pockets. A rich, sophisticated cargo pant is not only Very of the Moment, but it also has wardrobe staple potential. But for the record, despite my affinity for baggy pants, I am not a fan of pleats. I feel that the traditional front pleats on pants are an unflattering way of allowing volume for movement in the pant. Let’s just leave it at that.

Balenciaga Baggy Pant
Balenciaga Spring 05 | Courtesy of Style.com

*I’m a great fan of Narciso Rodriguez’s work. I was actually in New York during Fashion Week last September for the Spring shows. Tried to get into Rodriguez’s show, but alas, it was packed full, standing room only for even invited guests. At least I made it into the tents.

Entry Filed under: Shopping Guide, Women

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