What Would Holley Wear: Dapper Edition

Webster’s definition for dapper is:  Neat and trim in appearance and very spruce and stylish. Spruce kind of sounds like a tree…don’t ya think?  So, I decided to go with the Urban Dictionary’s definition:  A compliment made to someone who looks incredibly smart, sexy and stylish.

So two things you need to know about women:

 #1.  You had us at “incredibly smart”…

 #2.  …and top that off with sexy and stylish, and we’re all in!

Here’s the deal guys…style/sprucing may not be your thing but for us, it’s everything. So, let’s get started by talking about the typical dapper look…”Suits, Vests, and Ties!” Remember the days of the 3-piece suit in the 70’s and 80’s? Today’s 3-piece suit has a different look, and the vest does not necessarily match the suit.  A sweater vest under a suit jacket not only adds another texture but serves the purpose of keeping you warm. And remember, when wearing a vest to keep the bottom button unbuttoned.  News you can use…right?

The shoes and belt you wear with your suit should complete your outfit. The belt should be fairly thin and the same color as your shoes.  The main thing to remember here is to make sure your shoes are clean and polished. I know this for a fact because I’m married to a man who knows how to polish a pair of shoes.  He actually shined shoes when he was a little boy. Sometimes he would take the shoes home and deliver them by foot to his clients the next day.  If you think shoe shining only exists at the carwash and airport, just know there is an array of shoe polish kits you can order online.  Be sure to check out KIWI Shoe Shine Valet at Amazon.com — a perfect Father’s Day gift.  

“The difference between being a man and a gentleman is having clean fingernails and shined shoes.”

Do you remember the days when men wore a suit to church, work, and to dinner?  I actually miss those days.  Do you?  So often I’ll see a lady dressed up and out with her man who is wearing cargo shorts and an untucked shirt.  Please know, I love the untucked look on a man, but I really think a couple’s outfits should complement each other. So, if you are “that guy,” I want to challenge you to dapper-up your style a bit.  

A few rules to remember are the suit jacket should be long enough to cover the pants zipper and rear.  Sleeve cuffs should be exposed about half an inch.  For a more current look, opt for a charcoal or grey suit over black because dark grey is more versatile and goes with more colors.  If a suit is totally out of your style realm, then at least consider adding a blazer to your wardrobe.  To me, a man’s blazer is the most versatile piece in his wardrobe.  It can be worn with slacks and a button-down shirt and tie.  Though, my favorite look is when a blazer is worn with jeans, a crisp button-down shirt, no tie, and polished shoes. How dapper is that?

 

 

The icing on the cake when it comes to men’s style is ties and pocket squares.  Like the blazer, there are some style rules for ties.  Remember your tie should always be darker than your dress shirt and should reach the waist band of your trousers or slightly shorter.  And it’s important to remember the width of your tie should match the width of the jacket lapel. A pocket square adds an extra level of polish, but make sure it doesn’t match your tie in either pattern or fabric choice.  To see the dozens of ways to tie a tie and fold a pocket square, check out this week’s Pinterest board.

But more than anything, remember these words from ZZ Top:

“Clean shirt, new shoes.  And I don’t know where I’m goin’ to.  Silk suit, black tie, I don’t need a reason why. They come running just as fast as they can….Cause every girl crazy ‘bout a sharp dressed man.”

Don’t forget each week, Holley updates our Pinterest board just for you with fresh inspiration and ideas.  There is a lot of eye candy on this week’s board for everyone to enjoy!  Be sure to follow the board so you automatically have access to new content!

Holley Williams is a personal stylist specializing in closet inventory, seasonal shopping, closet organization and wardrobe consultation. Contact Holley at [email protected]

Girls Just Want To Getaway

Leaving today for a long weekend of fun, laughing, eating, napping and relaxation with my three best girlfriends from elementary and middle school. I promise to share all the fun with you next week.

Thank you for continuing to follow me on my journey with this blog I love so much.  I appreciate each and every one of you!

P.S.  I am the one in the front seat holding the hat between my knees…

What Would Holley Wear: The Neutral Camel

Camel is my favorite neutral color because it goes with everything from colors to stripes and even animal prints.  

 A little fashion story from my past:

 About 15 years ago I fell in love with camel after seeing a Marc Jacobs camel pleated skirt paired with a grey sweater on the cover of Vogue Magazine.  I copied the look with a camel pleated skirt from Club Monaco.  But this is the thing….up until that point, I thought camel was a boring color and too “plain jane.”  But not anymore….now I see it as a very classic color!

So let’s talk about some of the many style options to pair with camel. Since we are in the middle of springtime, one of my favorite looks is camel and white.  I love the picture of the beautiful camel cape, white slacks, and stacks of gold bracelets on our Pinterest board.  Another fabulous combo is suede camel culottes, and a beautiful Victorian white blouse worn with snakeskin pumps.   A look to keep you warm on those cool spring evenings is a Catherine Robinson cashmere wrap in camel…of course.  Shoes in a nude or animal print are the perfect combo for a camel and white ensemble.  For drama, add a bold statement necklace or stacks of bracelets.  Does that sound classy or what?

Since we never know what the weather will be like from one day to the next, we still need to think about light-weight spring coats and sweaters. Again, this is when camel becomes the perfect spring transition piece. What is more classic than a trench coat?  If you said, “nothing,” then you are right!  Whether worn with slacks, leather pants, or jeans, a classic trench coach gives any outfit a sophisticated look. Even think about adding a matching scarf to give your outfit a monochromatic look.  If your wardrobe is more on the causal side, this is when you will want to wear your jeans and camel coat or jacket with a pair of sneakers. Such a great way to transform a classic piece of clothing into a trendy look.  

Another great look to pair with camel is animal print.  Animal print will take your classic camel outfit for a walk on the wild side.  Okay…maybe not too wild, but it will add a little spunk to your outfit!  Think about incorporating animal print into your camel ensemble with a handbag or scarf.  Both accessories will go with your jackets and white pieces.  Also, consider adding animal print with your shoes.  There are so many choices; heels, flats, and sneakers.  If you are really daring, wear a pair of animal print pants with your camel trench coat or jacket.  And to that, I say…you go girl!  

A look I love is camel with stripes. That kind of sounds French… doesn’t it?  Ines de la Fressange, French model, style icon and former muse to Karl Lagerfeld has that chic French look that I adore. Be sure to check out my Pinterest board, “Ines,” to study her effortless style.  She is also the author of Parisian Chic, which includes all of her favorite haunts in Paris. I’m pretty sure you will want to add her book to your reading list.  The best thing about a chic French look is that it never goes out of style because…just like camel…it’s a classic.

If you love color, just know you can pair every color with camel. My favorite combo is paired with red.  You can add red with a pair of pants or a dress topped off with a camel blazer or sweater.  A subdued option would be to add a hint of red with a handbag or shoes.  The good news is this….whatever color you choose to pair with your camel ensemble will be the perfect pop of color for you.

 

Ines de la Fressange defines her book in three words: “eclectic, honest, and happy.”  That’s how I see the color camel…eclectic, honest, and it makes me so happy!

Holley Williams is a personal stylist specializing in closet inventory, seasonal shopping, closet organization and wardrobe consultation. Contact Holley at [email protected]

My Easy Three: Accessory Organization

My Easy Three is a series I started in January to share inspiring ideas that are doable and make you feel like you’ve accomplished something.

This month, I focused on my closet using a few products from The Container Store, taking advantage of their 15% off closet storage sale. Warning:  I am showing you my underwear drawer!

First up, we might as well get the “unmentionables” out of the way.  I purchased the 3-section twill drawer organizer.

What I like about the drawer organizer for lingerie is I can fold my undergarments and organize them according to color and type. It helps me to see what I have, access it quickly and keep it neat and tidy.  I purchased three organizers.  The first easily held all my lingerie, the second I used to organize shape wear, and the third for my tank tops.

Second, I wanted a way to see all my brooches and pins.  Some belonged to Mother, and others I’ve picked up on my own either new or in antique stores.  These low-heeled shoe boxes are made for a narrow profile shoe like a flip flop.  Wonderful on it’s own, I decided to use it to stack accessories on the glass shelves I hung on the wall in my master closet.  I wanted a space for my accessories that had the feel of a boutique and these stackable boxes are pretty and functional.  I can easily see what I have.  If you know what you have you will wear it!

Third, over the last several years as I have switched to wearing glasses more than my contacts, I have curated an eye wear wardrobe. I mean, you can’t wear the same glasses everyday!  I feel like eye wear is jewelry for the face.  I needed a place to house all my eye glasses so I can easily access them and keep them protected.  These stackable boxes are perfect for my prescription sunglasses, too.

If you want to catch up, here are projects from January and March.  I wonder what I can tackle for May?  Do you need inspiration for a project? Be sure to leave a comment for Mrs. Twist and she will get to work with ideas just for you!

Shirley Temple Cake

Looking through Pinterest recently, I found a recipe from Tastes of Lizzy T for a Shirley Temple Cake!  I loved this iconic drink when I was little.  Mother and Daddy would order me this mocktail to enjoy as they visited with their friends over dinner.  I always felt so special.  In fact, I dare you to not smile when you sip one!

The origin of the Shirley Temple drink may have been invented by a bartender at Chasen’s, a restaurant in Beverly Hills, to serve then child actress Shirley Temple. Temple herself was not a fan of the drink, as she told Scott Simon in an NPR interview in 1986: “The saccharine sweet, icky drink? Yes, well… those were created in the probably middle 1930s by The Brown Derby Restaurant in Hollywood and I had nothing to do with it. But, all over the world, I am served that. People think it’s funny. I hate them. Too sweet!” Adding an ounce and a half of vodka or rum produces a “Dirty Shirley.”  I wonder how Miss Temple would like that?

The cake is really yummy.  It’s very much like a pound cake base with a citrus finish from the added 7Up and lemon extract.  The maraschino cherries add a pretty touch.  Find the recipe from my Pinterest Cake Board here.

Since I have made it, I will make a few suggestions of how I would modify the recipe for next time.

  1.  I would get a larger jar of cherries and chop them so they are more evenly distributed through the cake instead of just putting in whole cherries.
  2. The recipe calls for you to pour the reserved juice over the cake once it’s removed from the cake pan.  I would probably leave the cake in the pan, pour the juice over a hot cake, let it sit for about 10 minutes, then invert it onto your cake plate.  I think this would allow the juice to absorb more into the cake.

Other than that, I think this is a winning recipe and would be perfect to have for a dinner or take to a pot luck.  Add a dollop of whipped cream and a sprig of mint and it makes for a pretty presentation.

I hope Shirley approves — I know I do!

What Would Holley Wear: Kentucky Derby Style

Have you ever wondered what Kentucky Derby and Church Lady Style might have in common?  It reminds me of the chapter title from a book I recently read…”When Prayer Meeting Becomes Cocktail Hour.”  Plus, I’m pretty sure there’s as much praying going on at a race track as there is at church…maybe more!

 So, two things you need to know about me:

  1. I did grow up going to Oaklawn Race Track in Arkansas…
  2. …and I also grew up going to the Methodist Church (and still do).  
Ellen Palmer — Best Hats in 2016 Derby!

So, here’s the deal….you can gamble and drink one day…go to prayer meeting and ask for forgiveness the next day…and wear the same outfit for both occasions.  If you are from the South, I’m sure you totally relate to this.  Because Southern ladies are proper, modest, and dress appropriately whether they are sinning or praying.  And to all of that I say….bless their hearts!  

The hat is a stand-alone piece of fashion at the Derby.  Some are beautiful, some are comical, and some look like pieces of art.  And even women like me who don’t like to wear a hat, will wear one to the Kentucky Derby because I’m pretty sure it’s considered a sin if you don’t.  Like the Derby hats, the hats worn to church, especially on Easter Sunday are the crowning glory for any Easter ensemble.  

For many years, I have been a guest of a dear friend to the Hat’s Off to Mothers Luncheon benefiting Easter Seal of North Texas.  Like Derby hats and church hats, the beautiful hats are show stealers at this event.  True confession:  I like to wear a fascinator because it doesn’t mess up my hair. This year the Hats Off to Mothers luncheon is Thursday, May 11 at 11:00 a.m. at Ridglea Country Club (for more information, contact Megan Smock at [email protected]). If you love seeing beautiful hats and dresses, this is a luncheon you will not want to miss!

So let’s talk about Derby Style and what to wear.  I have to be honest and admit that I have never been to the Kentucky Derby, but I have done my research.  Besides the hats, the ensembles the women wear are classy, and the men’s outfits are dapper.  Most of the women choose to wear dresses or skirt. Florals and spring colors seem to be the most popular.

The young women still wear high heels, but flats have made a come-back. Makes sense…right? Wedges or block heels are a great substitute for stilettos and help the ladies keep their balance while sipping mint juleps. Print mixing is so on-trend, and a floral skirt with a striped top or a striped jacket will be perfect at this year’s derby.  Another great derby look I love is a fitted green floral skirt with a ruffle, a white blouse, and nude heels. How derby-lious does that sound?

 

It blows my mind that this legendary event hosted at a race track is one of the few places you still see women wearing beautiful dresses and hats…except at church, especially on Easter Sunday when everyone makes an extra effort to look elegant and ladylike.  Growing up, my mom made me a new “Easter dress” every year.  After church, my siblings and our cousins would go across the street to our grandparent’s house for the annual Easter parade and egg hunt.   My favorite Easter dress was when I was 4 years old.  I wore a beautiful white organza dress, complemented with a matching parasol and purse, and of course an adorable Easter hat.  So fancy!

 

Holley and her sister

Just like a lot of things these days, church dresses are becoming a thing of the past.  So here’s my plan:  Because I’m so passionate about the “church-dress,” I’m thinking about organizing a march.  The march would consist of women wearing beautiful church-like ensembles. Hats and parasols would be optional….but not makeup.  The ladies would be carrying signs that read:  “Get Dressed Up or Go Home,” or possibly, “Make America Stylish Again.”  Oh my goodness….does that make me sound radical?  Bless my heart!

All that being said, I truly love traditions like the Kentucky Derby, Hats Off to Moms, and Easter parades….because traditions actually take you back in time, which is kind of like a mint julep…refreshing!

Check out our Pinterest board for more inspiration. 

Holley Williams is a personal stylist specializing in closet inventory, seasonal shopping, closet organization and wardrobe consultation. Contact Holley at [email protected] 

The Best Parts of Me Came From These Three

Yesterday I posted this photo of my siblings in honor of National Sibling Day. Taken on the front porch of the home I grew up – 4617 Meadowbrook Drive. Fifteen, twelve and eleven years old when I came along, I learned some important things from each of them.

From Sister Bee, I learned how to tie my shoes, count and do my multiplication tables.  She was always my biggest cheerleader, still is, offering encouraging words.  She was the most excited that I was on the way, and I feel like I received a double dose of love from her as a sister and a surrogate mother.

From my older brother, Jimbo, I learned to be comfortable quietly listening to music and reading.  His room was upstairs on the end of the house nestled up in the trees.  He would come and get me out of my bed at night and I would sleep in his bed while he studied.  I think he just liked having me nearby.  When Mother would do the final bed check before going to sleep herself, she’d find me in his bed and return me to my crib for the night.  He read me the story of the Velveteen Rabbit and gave me a bunny after I lost my first tooth telling me how brave I was.  I learned tenderness and gentleness from him. And his laugh was like no one else.

Then, there’s the younger brother.  He’s always been a ball of fire.  He pretended he wasn’t that interested in me and I think sometimes used me as a way to get out of doing chores.  However, he was the only one who took action when I came in from the backyard one night looking like the character “Carrie” with blood dripping down my face from an accident I had on the swing.  As my parents sat there looking at each other bewildered as to why I was covered in blood, brother was yelling, “come on people, get the first aid kit!”  I learned from him loyalty, strength and courage.  He can make me laugh like no one else.  When we are together it’s comfortable like a warm blanket. (note: when I texted him this photo yesterday his reply — “what a stinky poo poo pants little brat, but I love you anyway.”)

The way they interacted with me just unfolded naturally.  I don’t ever remember Mother asking them to spend time with me, they just genuinely wanted to.  I grew up knowing I was loved and for that I am thankful.  As my mother said, “the first few years of your life, your feet never touched the ground.”

Whimsical Appetizers for Easter

My little Easter bunny niece is coming for the weekend and I’m picking out fun appetizers for the adults to enjoy during her egg hunt.  Now that Miss Bee is a teenager, I’m looking forward to pulling together ideas for a little one.

First are these cute, devilish chicks.  They are a twist on a deviled egg. The eyes are capers and the beaks are nibs of carrots.  How cute!  If you are needing to take a dish to an Easter gathering, you will long be remembered for these peeps.

Next, how delightful a platter of Tomato Tulips would be.  Just quarter grape tomatoes almost all the way through, then use a toothpick to attach each to a trimmed whole green onion. Fill a plastic bag with garlic-herb cheese; snip a corner and pipe into buds.

 

 

 

And, I think Miss Amelia would love to wake up on Saturday morning to a plate of Easter Bunny pancakes.  Only 3-ingredients go into these hotcakes — a banana, self-rising flour, and eggs.

All of these recipes were inspired from the latest issue of Good Houskeeping and are pinned to my Appetizer Pinterest board.

Sips…with a Twist

On the coat tails of Holley’s post yesterday, I thought it would be fun to round up some pink drinks.

From A Beautiful Mess, look at these Pink Lemonade Jello Shots!

They give you a recipe for “lemonade” using vodka, pink lemonade, unflavored gelatin, and Deep Eddies Lemon Vodka. Yum. But, you might be able to concoct a non-alcoholic version with plain lemonade and gelatin.

In fact, if you need a kid-friendly pink lemonade recipe, here is one from The Cooking Bride.  This is the kind you make using a simple syrup on the stove and mix in fresh squeezed lemon juice, then add a smidge of cranberry juice to make it pink. Central Market always has the freshest selection of lemons. Meyer lemons are my absolute favorite for making lemonade.

Look at this confection…Very Pink Raspberry Cosmopolitan from Creative Culinary. That luscious pink color is divine!

Calling for raspberries and their juice and raspberry liqueur, vodka and simple syrup, garnished with a rim of pink sugar crystals…it makes me want to sit on a recliner and be fanned by a cabana boy holding a palm frond.

And last, from Tell me Tuesday, a Rosemary, Grapefruit and Gin cocktail. You make a simple syrup using rosemary, then add in dry Gin and fresh squeezed grapefruit juice.   Here’s a tip:  If you are going to prepare drinks that call for “fresh squeezed” purchase the juice from a place like Central Market that really makes it fresh and not from concentrate.  Don’t use canned juice.  I mean, you can, but the result of a super-fresh cocktail that tastes clean won’t be the same with juice from concentrate. Trust Mrs. Twist on this.

If you don’t know how to make a simple syrup, you need to learn.  It’s not hard.  Here’s a how-to video link here.  It will keep in the fridge for up to a month.  Just put it into a mason jar and it will be ready for whenever you want to whip up one of these delicious cocktails.

Check out my other Just a Sip cocktail ideas on my Pinterest board (there’s over 300 recipes).  Cheers to Pink!

What Would Holley Wear: Puttin’ on the Pink Edition

In honor of next week’s Puttin’ on the Pink luncheon and fashion show, I am dedicating this article to the color pink! The event is hosted by The Kupferle Health Board, and the fashion show is sponsored by Highland Park Village.  

So, two things you need to know about this event:

  1. It is an amazing fundraiser with proceeds benefiting mobile health outreach to underserved women.
  2. …and the fashion show is over-the-top spectacular!!!  

 

If you are attending, I hope you are planning to arrive via a vintage pink Volkswagen van. You will definitely want to arrive in time for a complimentary pre-luncheon pink cocktail and fabulous boutique shopping!   

So, what would Holley suggest one wear to such a posh event? Something pink…of course! One of my favorite looks is a light pink Zara pant suit, black and white striped blouse, and grey pumps.  For a little pizzazz, think about adding some bling and a cute hat.  Maybe you would like a way to repurpose your silver metallic pleated skirt from the fall.  May I suggest wearing it with a white button- down blouse, a light pink coat and a grey pump.  A great look to copy is the tweed pink skirt set worn by Amal Clooney as seen on our Pinterest board.  I’m pretty sure George would even approve!

Maybe your favorite shade is bright pink or actually hot pink!  Again, I love that pant suits are back on trend, and I’m crushing on the fuchsia one Blake Lively wore with strappy black sandals.  One of my favorite hot pink dresses is an Alexander McQueen crepe wool dress with tulip sleeves.  It’s a dress that can go from the office to a charity luncheon and to a cocktail party in the evening.  The Kate Spade floral flounce dress is also a winner and perfect for church, luncheons, and showers. Sounds like a party to me!

 

 

Do you own a pink accessory?  If not, I’m pretty sure you will want to purchase something pink after you see our Pinterest board.  To make a major statement, consider a bold necklace.  Two of our featured necklaces include a bright fuchsia link necklace from J Crew and the Sienna layered choker necklace from Anthropology.

Both options could possibly complement one of your pink ensembles, and they would look stunning worn with an all-white outfit.  A fashion rule to remember is when you wear a large statement necklace, keep your earrings simple.  Think about a wearing pink stud earring that matches a statement necklace.  And vice versa, if you wear large earrings, you won’t need a necklace at all.  A pair of earrings that would be a great pop for a pink ensemble are opal Galactic earrings from Bauble Bar.  And if you are planning to host an “arm party,” wear a stack of pink bangles, an odd number…of course.  

 Another way to add a pop of pink to your spring wardrobe is with a purse.  Kate Spade has a beautiful scalloped satchel that looks great with black, white and grey, or consider wearing it with a pink monochromatic ensemble.  But again, if you like your colors a little on the hot side, then know you can’t go wrong with a quilted Chanel or Louis Vuitton handbag, both in hot pink.  Be sure to be on the “watch out” for a trendy time piece. If you are the girly-girl type, then I’m pretty sure you will love the pale pink Ted Baker watch on our Pinterest board.  

The way I’m adding a pop of pink to my wardrobe this spring is with a pink coat.  My favorite way to wear it is with a pair of jeans and sneakers, or I can style it up with black slacks, a white blouse, and black heels.  It also complements my grey and white jeans. Wow…I love it when I have so many style options! Even though pink seems fancy, flirty, and feminine….it can also be casual and fun!  A pair of glittery flats that wink back at you will look adorable with a pair of white jeans and a black and white striped t-shirt.  And be sure to add a pair of pink shades and a Panama hat!  

 

Do you like to pamper yourself? Well then….what sounds more luxurious than soaking in a pink bubble bath while sipping a pink mimosa?  I’m pretty sure nothing!   All you need now is a really cute pair of pink pajamas. Between florals, stripes, and satins seen on our Pinterest board, you have an array of options to choose from.  And of course you will want to consider adding a pair of slippers and an eye mask.  

Oh my goodness….is this starting to sound like a chapter from the Pinkalicious book series?   I hope so!

Holley Williams is a personal stylist specializing in closet inventory, seasonal shopping, closet organization and wardrobe consultation. Contact Holley at [email protected]