Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

October 1st, 2015

Handbag Wardrobe

It’s easy to forget to finish your look. You have all the main pieces: dresses, trousers, blouses, jackets, sweaters, shoes. Then the bag. You have a beat up macrame purse that your Aunt Tess made for your birthday when you were 16. You loved it then and now…well, it still fits all your stuff.

But it’s time. Time to step up your handbag game. Here they are in order of priority. In other words…build your handbag wardrobe. No need to run out and buy an entire collection of handbags. You can take it step by step.

The Tote

This is the carryall bag that allows you to haul your laptop to the office, wallet, phone, and even a small child or two. It is your everything and carries anything. The simplicity of the Madewell Transport Tote makes it my #1 choice. Also love this  affordable option from Zara.

The Oversize Clutch

This is the bag you carry when you are headed out on a date night with your man or a night out on the town with your girls. It’s not a dress clutch. The funky, oversize style of the clutch lends itself  to a weekend night jeans-and-heels look. Rebecca Minkoff’s envelope clutch with zipper detail is one of my favorites. You can also try one of this season’s hottest bag  trends — the furry clutch.


The Boss Lady Bag

This is the bag you carry to meetings, lunches, interviews. It is not too big or too small. The sophisticated clean lines of this satchel mean business. Fendi out of your price range? This Ted Baker number  is equally stunning and the Zara city bag gets the job done.


The Hands-Free


The crossbody continues to be a great option for weekend outings when you don’t need to lug a bunch of stuff. Just your wallet, phone and some lipstick. Great for concerts or any other outings where you need a bag, but don’t want to carry one. A fun  way to access the season’s 70s trend  is with a fringed crossbody. The bag adds fun movement to your look without feeling overdone. Coveting this Rebecca Minkoff gem.

The Dress Clutch

This clutch has wattage. It is a smaller size than your date-night clutch and is meant to go with dressier evening/event looks. I recommend going for metallics and lots of sparkle, but not a heavy gold or silver. Try a gunmetal or a mixed-metal option instead — it is a more neutral metallic that will go with just about anything. Love this Alice & Olivia option.



May 30th, 2015

Personal Styling Case Study: Dressing for a Fuller-Around-the-Middle Body Type

Earlier this month I shopped and put together looks for one of my favorite long-time clients. Before we got started this time, she informed me that she had gained a bit of weight due to a hectic work travel schedule and long hours. That weight had settled in her midsection and she wanted to address that up front during our work together. So we got to work employing one of my tried-and-true mantras: dress for where you and your body are at.

If your body type is fuller around the middle, there are a few ways to layer, accessorize, employ print and more that will draw attention away from your midsection and to features you do want to highlight.


1.) Layer a shorter cardigan or jacket over a longer blouse. The longer blouse over the curve-hugging pencil skirt does a great job of giving my client room around the middle. However, it threw her proportions off, making her torso look disproportionately longer than her legs. The shorter cardigan and necklace help draw that attention back up, balancing her silhouette.

2.) Try a dress that shows off your legs as opposed to pushing an hourglass silhouette. My client has fantastic legs so I got her this  ASOS cocoon dress. She was worried that the shape of the dress looked maternity so we accessorized with a long pendant necklace to elongate her neckline.

3.) Do a partial tuck with your top/denim look.  If you know me, you know I am a huge fan of white blazers AND the casual tuck. Boyfriend jeans with a form-fitting top would have made my client feel uncomfortably exposed. A blousier top, half tucked felt both roomier and flattering.

4.) Try a pencil skirt with small print. A high-waist pencil skirt in a solid color would have emphasized her midsection. A pencil skirt with a small print will distract the eye. We bloused her top as well to  draw attention away from/balance her waistline.

5.) I  wanted  to get my client a really feminine dress that flattered her curves. This gorgeous jade green Hobbs fit-and-flare dress does cinch around the waistline,  but the key is it skims instead of clings.

6.)  A blousy wrap top will work wonders. This one is a great layering piece. It also draws attention up to her face and gives her room around the middle.

If you have put on a few extra pounds and some of what you wore before no longer works, never fret. Just a few style tweaks and you’re back in business!

This post is by Rosana Vollmerhausen, chief stylist and owner of DC Style Factory.  Read more about Rosana here. Follow her styling adventures on Facebook and Instagram (@dcstylefactory)! 



March 31st, 2015

Sliding into Spring: N’jeri’s Favorite Trend this Season

The “ugly shoe” trend started last spring and comes roaring back to life this spring with the abundance of slides littering retail floors all across the fashion universe. DC Style Factory Style Associate, N’jeri Agyeman couldn’t be more excited to get her toes into some sporty slides.

“I just love the whole sporty-chic trend and this fits in perfectly. I can’t wait to do it  with slouchy pants when the weather warms!”

So, how do you do purposefully cool normcore  without looking accidentally unflattering frumpcore?

- Don’t do it like you’re headed to the gym. In other words, do it with clothing you’d wear out to shop, eat, etc.  Try pairing your Adidas slides with a cuffed straighleg jean, sleek black tank and some serious attitude.

- Pair your Adidas-style slides with a cute casual jersey spring dress or skirt. It feels unexpected and stylish.

- Be inspired by Audrey. Wear with black cigarette pants. Keep the rest of your look tailored - and even a little lux. It will make your your Birkenstocks feel purposeful and chic (yes, chic!)

- Try Birks in a metallic. No one did metallic Birks back in the ’90s so this feels like an update on how it was done before.

- Go monochromatic. Too much print and noise in the rest of your look will just make your buck-ly clunky Birks look like a whole lotta orthopedic mess.

- And finally…an essential: finish your slides look with an I-just-don’t-give-a- sh%$ pout.

Done and done. You will certainly have happy, thankful feet this spring and summer.



 Credits: Slides by Adidas// Chloe slides  similar Calvin Klein//Birkenstocks at Nordstrom

March 26th, 2015

Shop-Your-Closet Case Study: Kimono-Style Jacket Reinvented

I recently worked with a new client on her closet — not purchasing anything new, but creating outfits out of her existing wardrobe. She had this great kimono-style jacket that I just pounced on the minute I saw it.  It’s what I call a “crossroads piece” —  how you wear it can really go one way (funky, youthful) or the other (dated, matronly). You decide.

These crossroads pieces typically possesss one of the following elements:

- an ethnic-inspired print, style, etc.

- a vintage feel (think a round-neck classic Chanel boucle jacket or any copycats)

- an almost too-bold print that can come off garish

She  typically wore this statement-making jacket with a pair of wide-leg, drap-ey pants. It was for  a weekend evening out. She said she never felt quite right in it.

I wanted to update  how she styled this jacket in ways that would feel more polished and current. First, a weekend going- out look:

The key when working clothing that is ethnic-inspired, and could potentially be aging because of the silhouette and print, is to make it youthful by pairing with current pieces like…

- skinny dark jeans

- boyfriend jeans

- pointy-toe heels

Second, I wanted to show the versatility of the jacket by creating an office-ready look (she is a consultant). Plus, what a great alternative to a buttoned-up blazer!

To give this style of jacket polish and sophistication for work, pair with…

- black cigarette pants

- a black, fitted pencil skirt (the one picture works, but we’d like to tailor it to fit a little higher up on her waist and the hem to be at her knee so she gets that great hourglass silhouette)

- pointy-toe pumps

And wah-lah! The once-matronly kimono jacket gets a new life in this client’s wardrobe with just a couple of easy switch-ups.

Have you reinvented something in your closet recently?

March 23rd, 2015

In Bloom: Jenn’s Favorite Trend this Spring

Floral is never not “in” come spring. But this season, DC Style Factory stylist Jenn Barger is going rose-bold: the bigger the better.

“The bolder they are, the more modern and edgier they feel — not so grannyish.”

We see them with slightly undone hair, shoes with a tough edge or mixed with menswear-inspired elements. In other words, no shrinking violets need apply.

Credits: Marc Jacobs floral sweater // J.Crew pumps// MSGM pencil skirt//Ted Baker purse (similar)//Not Dressed as Lamb.

This is the first of a month-long series where DC Style Factory staff showcase their favorite Spring trends. Stay tuned for Style Associate N’jeri’s pick next week!