August 29th, 2015

Shop Now: Special Offer from Style Cable

I love styling, but I also love being a small business owner. Regularly connecting with other women businesses owners in the area is one of the things what keeps DC Style Factory fresh, new and moving forward. Recently, I had coffee with Uyen Tang — owner of Style Cable. Style Cable is an online shopping destination featuring emerging brands and designers. I am familiar and have worked with a number of her featured designers like Erika Schrieber, Sophie Blake and more.

I often hear from my clients, “How do I find those special pieces that no one else has? The ones that have a story and style that is different from the pack?”  Well, folks, with its focus on finding newer designers, Style Cable is a great way to add some of that individuality to your wardrobe. We are excited to partner with Style Cable for some fun video projects this coming holiday season. In the meantime, enjoy a special, limited-time offer of $25 off your Style Cable order. Simply enter in the code “dcstylefactory” at checkout.

Here are my favorites currently available on the site. They are adding many more styles into Fall as well. Happy shopping!

 

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You know I love a white blazer! This foldover jacket by Amy Lu has a modern, slim  silhouette, and  I love the black contrast detailing along the sleeves. With my black skinny tuxedo trousers, sparkly heels and major bling on my ears? Ready for date night. Also great over a simple black sheath and pumps for a work look that is DC-appropriate…with a dash of edgy chic.

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I talk to clients all the time about their handbag wardrobe. Usually I say you need a black or sparkly dress clutch (smaller) and then an oversize envelope clutch. One is for formal events and one is for date nights, drinks out with friends, etc. Every now and again, I find a clutch that could work both ways. The size of this Nite Cap Clutch by Khaki Raffia makes it appropriate for that LBD cocktail look. The texture and band make it funky and relaxed enough to pair with a skinny jeans-heels look for a night out with the ladies.

ElaineB-Antique-Brass-Cuff-Large-1_grandeI love a great cuff to add edge to any look. Brass and gunmetal are of my two favorite metals for jewelry because they are flattering on most skin tones and easy to pair with many looks.  They feel a little grittier and edgier than silver and gold too. This antique brass one  by Elaine B is sure to become one of your wardrobe staples.

 

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I love Erika Schrieber’s minimal, modern take on work-appropriate looks. The Alejandra pencil skirt in this glacier blue is on sale now from spring. But don’t be thrown. I love pastels in fall — layering with a cream sweater, scarf and tall boots cognac boots? Insta-chic.

August 28th, 2015

Behind the Scenes: Northern Virginia Magazine Fall Photoshoot

 

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A month ago, our team had the pleasure of styling a 13-page  spread for the September issue of Northern Virginia Magazine. Our daily work life is rooted in one-on-one client work — real people, real-life style. It was so much fun to step outside the norm and work on an editorial shoot where our style imaginations could run wild.

We conceptuatlized the Neo-Victorian-themed shoot,  scouted, pulled, dressed. Everyone brought something special to the table and the result was magical. Pick up a copy today and check out one of the hottest fashion trends this fall. In the meantime, watch what happened behind the scenes during our shoot (including a torrential downpour).  Special thank you to the wonderful team at Northern Virginia Magazine and my tireless staff ,  N’jeri and Tanvi.

 

Video by Tanvi Rastogi

August 21st, 2015

What My Personal Stylist Taught Me

I get selfies from clients all the time. It’s one of the most fun parts of my job — seeing in real time the clients I have bonded with happy and excited about how they look.

If you have worked with me, you know there are some tried-and-true Rosana-isms that get the style ball rolling. For example, you’re likely to hear, “We can do better!” when I visit your closet and see that, in fact, we can do better. Then to actually see clients embrace their new style is absolutely the best part of what I do each day.

Last week I asked a couple  of my favorite selfie-taking clients to tell me what is the most important style lesson they learned from me. Here’s what they had to say:

 

“Julie,” 45

“What worked for you in the past may  not work for you today. My body had transformed over several decades. But I was still putting the same shapes and silhouettes I had always worn over my current body. It didnt’ work. I learned to consider other styles and silhouettes for where I am today.”
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“Katie,” 36

“Just because you have kids, work from home, or want to be comfy doesn’t mean you should run around in yoga pants. You can have a relaxed style without looking like you are cleaning your house or going to the gym. You just need the right pieces to do it!”

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Ready to learn something new about your style and get on my roster of selfie-taking beauties? Email info@dcstylefactory.com to find out more today!

 

August 15th, 2015

Beauty Break: Darker Nails in Summer

My nails come last. Beauty-wise, the order of importance goes like so: face, hair, nails.  All three are quite low maintenance too — like 2-minute face, 2-minute hair and…well…the nails often get forgotten. When I get a manicure, I do short, square and usually a black or navy blue. I like to think it’s my signature, but truthfully it’s mostly because that is what is easiest. I would say 80 percent of the time, though, I end up keeping them clipped and natural, which has my assistant shaking her head.

DC Style Factory Style Associate N’jeri Agyeman is never without a tight nail game.  Check out some of her favorite colors from this summer and what she is looking forward to wearing once the temps cool!

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Growing up, it was always the cardinal nail rule that you just couldn’t wear dark colors in the summer; it just didn’t fit with the season. Lucky for me I have always been the kind of girl that marched to the beat of my own drum and even when I stuck with nail rules and wore brighter colors in warm weather –  it just wasn’t my cup of tea. I unapologetically would sport dark colors on the shiniest day. Now, I feel justified with Vogue‘s backing: “Rescue Beauty lounge founder Ji Black says,’dark nails work year around.’”

These past few weeks I have been really into muted colors. Last week I sported a purple-grey color that I just love and am honestly thinking about getting again.  Knowing me, though, I may go down a completely different avenue at my next nail appointment.

 “Merino Cool by Essie” is a similar color to this one.

For a similar look try Merino Cool by Essie

 To get a similar look try out  “730 Royal by Revlon Top Speed”

To get a similar look try 730 Royal by Revlon Top Speed

In my opinion, your nail color, shape and length is part of your style. I find dark blue and dark green to be the most versatile with different outfits. Check out my favorite colors from this summer and some that I plan to jump right into come fall. What have been your favorite nail colors this summer and what are you looking forward to wearing in the fall?

427 Teal Blue by Burberry

427 Teal Blue by Burberry

Gadabout Girl by MAC

Gadabout Girl by MAC

Storm Bird by Nars

Storm Bird by Nars

Blue Ming by Color Club

Blue Ming by Color Club

Our Secret Garden by Dare To Wear

Our Secret Garden by Dare To Wear

July 21st, 2015

Style Diary: Last-Minute Dress Shopping from DC to Chicago

Sometimes my job throws me curveballs.

I started working with a new client this summer — a 40-something “desperate Washingtonian real-size woman.” We did an initial consult on her closet and then booked a shopping trip. She was “cusp size,” which means a straight size 14 or 16 is often snug (along her bustline mainly), but a 16W or 18W are then often roomy. Took some creative maneuvering but we got her what she needed before her move to her new home in Alexandria. She was thrilled. I was thrilled. We laughed. We hugged. I sent her on her merry sartorial way.

Then I got an email from her with “Semi Emergency” in the subject line. In the midst of moving, shopping for work clothing, etc., she had forgotten that she hated her formal party dress options. And she had a wedding. That Saturday. In Chicago. Flight Thursday…and it was Monday.

“No problem!” I cheerily emailed her. I started strategizing how I would make this work on a tight time frame with what I knew would be slim pickings during this mid-summer season.

First step — local. I went and scouted Nordstrom and a few other retailers. The plan was to put on hold dresses for her to try on by herself after work.

Nope. We are not Mother of the Bride.

Nope. We are not Mother of the Bride.

As I guessed — slim pickings. Nothing spoke to me and, knowing her personal style, I knew she would NOT be happy with the selection. No-go on the local stuff. We would have to take this search online and do some overnighting. We went on ASOS and founds some great options on ASOS Curve that fit her style.

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She loved the ASOS dresses. I told her to order stat!

ASOS is in England so we were going to be cutting things rather close. But, she was game for doing the overnight shipping. Except…in ASOS terms that actually takes four days (buyer beware).

Back to the drawing board. Time was ticking. She would be boarding a plane soon and there was no time left to order or scrounge up a local dress that she would be “meh” about anyhow.

The Nordstrom in downtown Chicago is pretty spectacular so I decided to figure out how to get some stylish eyes out there to help me secure some dresses for my client to try on.

I texted my bestie.

“Help. Client traveling to Chicago for wedding. Stop. Can you head to Nordstrom and look at dresses? Stop. I will send you pictures of what we want, plus sizing and body-type specifics. Please say, “yes.” Stop.”

My friend Rachel is stylish. I mean she is in a cool indie rock band out in Chicago with her husband. Truth be told, she keeps ME hip. But, she hasn’t worked with styling individuals, body types, etc. I knew I would need to give her  specifics about my client, tell her what departments to go to, and have her send me pictures. I sent her pictures of some of the ASOS dresses my client really liked. I knew keeping it simple was key. We were on a tight time frame and would need to just get the fit and silhouette right. No party dress bells and whistles.

Understated chic was going to the name of this style game.

I texted my client and told her I had someone in Chicago that was going to pull dresses for her to try on Friday morning before her friend’s wedding on Saturday.

“You are my hero!” she wrote back. Well…I haven’t found the dress yet, I wanted to tell her. Don’t count your chickens, right? But I am a professional. As in a PRO-fessional shopper. Which means I get it done. No matter what. There is no crying in professional shopping… or giving up.

The search was on. It was early evening, and I was at the pool with my kids when pictures started streaming in from Rachel:

"Too work-y."

Too work-y.

Sheer lace back won't accommodate bra.

Nice but maybe not festive enough.

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The lace back won’t accommodate a bra.

 "Cute but it is an evening wedding and yellow feels a little too daytime."

Cute but it is an evening wedding and yellow feels a little too daytime.

We found a few promising dresses at Nordstrom. Pretty simple LBDs. Silhouettes looked good. Had Rachel put them on hold and let my client know exactly where to pick up.

Friday morning I messaged my client: “Up and at ‘em!” (Yes, I can also be a style drill sergeant). I wanted to make sure she had a least a couple of dresses to choose from by that afternoon. The wedding was the next day! She messaged me that she was on her way, and I waited in nervous anticipation for her texts.

Tick, tick, tick.

Tick, tick, tick.

Fingers crossed. Sweating. Please let this work. Please let this work. Please let this work.

First picture came through…with this message:

“PERFECT FIT. UNBELIEVABLE.”

Hallelujah!!

She paired her new LBD,  with a fun cape-like detail around the arms, with Franco Sarto wedges we had purchased for her during our DC shopping excursion. My client went to her friend’s wedding and felt beautiful.

 

"Winner"

And me? I lit a candle for the style gods…and ate a bag of (celebratory) cookies.