@30SecondMom of the Week: @CJAllDressedUp Shares #Fashion #Shopping Secrets! by Elisa A. Schmitz 30Seconds
The change of seasons is always a fun time for fashion, and there’s no one better to talk to about style and shopping secrets than our very own Cheryl Leahy! Better known as @CJAllDressedUp on Twitter, and All Dressed Up with Nothing to Drink on her blog, Cheryl really lives up to her titles. Every time I see CJ, I am always dazzled by her knack for pulling together beautiful ensembles! How does she do it, and even saves money, too? We got her to spill some of her secrets as our 30Second Mom of the Week! Read the interview with Cheryl below, and join her as she hosts the #30SecondMom Twitter party chat this Wednesday at 8pmCT. You won’t want to miss our summer recipe exchange, so bring your favorite dish or drink to share!
Q: So many of us love to shop, but don’t always know the best way to make the most of our purchases. Any rules to live by?
A: Calculate the CPW (Cost Per Wear) of items; take cost divided by number of times you anticipate wearing item in a year. Calculating cost per wear separates investment pieces (worth the splurge) from trendy items (ones you can skimp on). Also, pay attention to the three Fs: Fit, Fabric and Form. Does item actually FIT, check FABRIC quality, does FORM work with your body type? A favorite place of mine to shop is my own closet! I flip through fashion magazines and pick out items I have to re-work.
Q: We always hear about the great deals you get! What are some of your shopping secrets?
A: Get to know the markdown schedules: Target discounts women’s clothing on Tuesdays! I also shop early and often: I hit up stores on my way to/from events to take a traffic break. Speak up! If an item is slightly damaged, you can usually get more money off. I always do online coupon searches before a shopping spree. Some stores even have coupon apps that automatically load their latest coupons!
Q: I go to a lot of formal events. Any tips on how to work a formal look?A: I say cheat! Find a celebrity with a similar body type and steal their style. They pay big money for top stylists. Invest in a high quality classic “little black dress” (LBD) and add inexpensive costume jewelry to switch up your look. Also try Rent the Runway if you have a major event; you can rent designer dresses for a fraction of the price and THEY do the dry cleaning!
Q: What are some trends we can work into our wardrobes right now?
A: Colored lace! Go all out with a skirt or keep is simple with a clutch or shoes. Metallics are always hot: grab a pair of heels in a shiny shade that will go with everything. Look to small-screen stars for seasonal inspiration. My favorites: Kelly Ripa and Christine Baranski from “The Good Wife.” Tropical and safari looks are also hitting the summer scene in a big way.
Q: What are some staples we need in the closet?
A: A great pair of jeans with 2 to 3 percent Lycra; make sure to buy them snug because they stretch. HOT heels that make you feel instantly sexy; confidence is the best accessory! A high-quality, great fit LBD with a classic silhouette and hemline will be your best friend for years to come. For the summer, basic white tanks with stretch (I love Old Navy perfect tanks; I buy them in bulk when they are on sale). For the office or a night out, a pencil skirt that hits 2 inches above the knee (which is the most flattering length). A high-quality leather purse/bag never goes out of style and looks better the more you use it. Also, a well-cut trench coat is a miracle worker when flattering your figure; sometimes it will be the only piece of your wardrobe people see!
Q: How about accessories? What can we easily add to our wardrobes?
A: Stacked bracelets of assorted sizes, shapes and design. The more the merrier! If you don’t know how to stack bracelets, wrap a long necklace around your wrist a few times for a similar look. Nail art is still going strong. Make sure to try nail stickers: they are easy and long-lasting. A manicure with each nail a different color is also making a splash this summer. Cat eye and colored sunglasses are an easy and inexpensive update to your wardrobe this season. Chunky chains make great statement necklaces. I adore ones with pave detail!