Girls’ Night Out!

My friends and I heading out on the town this summer.

Let’s face it, every single one of us needs a good girl’s night out on the town every once in awhile. Between the laughs, drinks, gossip, and opportunity to look fabulous, they’re truly hard to beat. If you’re anything like me, you could try on clothing for hours with your girlfriends to find just the right look for that particular evening. In honor of our stores hosting their own GNO events this Thursday, Here are a couple look suggestions we recommend trying this summer!

Be Bold
No matter what that latest trend is that you’ve been eyeing, girl’s night is a great chance to rock it! Whether it’s sequins, metallics, or neon colors, don’t shy away from eye-catching items. Being with your favorite ladies will give you that extra boost of confidence to try something new.

Closet Essentials
As a very social fashionista that loves any excuse to get dolled up, I must admit I own a skirt in almost every color. The key with skirts is having a variety of styles. You cannot go wrong with a pencil, circle, or high-low skirt this summer, all you need is the right blouse. One trend we cannot ignore lately is sheer and lace. No matter how they are worn, these items always make your look classy and chic. If you don’t know what to pair a button down blouse with, we suggest trying a killer pair of bright shorts.

Pump It Up
If you happen to be on the shorter side like myself, you love any opportunity to give yourself those extra few inches. One item every fashionista should have in her closet is the perfect, and comfortable, pair of pumps. We recommend always having a pair of nude pumps because no matter what crazy color combo you may throw together, these shoes are always going to match, while making your legs look awesome. If you’re a city gal, always keep in mind those pesky grates! You may want to stick to a thicker heal if you’ll be strutting through the streets. And if you’re not confident you’ll last a long evening in those new heels you just bought, don’t be afraid to rock sandals, people will envy your comfort and style.

The Essential Accessories
Be sure to not leave your house without an adorable clutch that can hold all of the essentials: your phone, money, identification, and lipstick of course. Avoid taking a big bag at all costs, you’ll regret it when it’s time to hit the dance floor! For jewelry, try going big and bold with either your earrings or necklace, while staying simple with the other. Bangles and statement bracelets are always a fun accessory, along with bigger rings. If you’re looking for the perfect opportunity to rock your fun costume jewelry, your next GNO couldn’t be better.

More Formal
To keep your look more on the formal side, it is all about finding that perfect dress. For these occasions, its OK to invest! For the frugal fashionistas, STA has some fabulous designer dresses at amazingly affordable prices, so be sure to stop in one of our stores to check them out! You will not regret that little extra you may have to spend on the perfect dress for you. If you need a cover up, this summer is all about the blazer! We recommend every fashionista keep a plain blazer in her closet this summer, it is sure to get plenty of use.

We want to see what you fashioniSTAs are rocking this summer!! Tweet or instagram a picture of you & your girlfriends with the hashtag #fashionistasGNO and we will share our favorites!

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5 Summer Beach Bag Essentials

1. Vintage-Style Bathing Suit
One look I cannot stop obsessing over this summer is the return of the retro bathing suits! This style suit, with high waisted bottoms, and ruffled hems, is absolutely adorable (Think Rachel McAdams running through the water in that red bikini in the iconic Notebook). Whether it is a ruffled one piece, or the addition of some buttons, when trying to find this summer’s suits keep an eye out for the designs with a vintage touch.

2. Chic and Unique Shades
Rocking a killer pair of shades is absolutely mandatory to enjoy a day at the beach. There are so many different styles to chose from right now, so its a good idea to search through the adorable and inexpensive pairs that can be found at retail stores, rather than risk bringing your favorite pair of designer shades to the sand and ocean. Don’t be afraid to go for a bright colored rim, this summer is all about standing out!

3. A Fabulous Hat
Hats are the go to accessory this summer, so don’t be afraid to break out that fedora or cowboy hat you haven’t touched in years. Big, floppy Kentucky Derby style hats are back on the shelves, and besides being fabulously fashionable, they protect our face and hair from the hot, and potentially damaging, sun rays. And if you insist you just aren’t a hat person but your hair gets totally wild in the wind, a thick fabric headband may be just what you need to keep those beach waves under control.

4. A Stylish Cover Up
You cannot go wrong with a simple crochet cover up, this bohemian look will keep you cool and covered. If you’re looking to show a little less skin, a light maxi dress or skirt is always a great option. If you’re dying to show off your new bikini top but don’t have complete confidence with your body, you’re not limited to the classic sarong, this summer try a pair of high-waisted shorts to lounge around the beach in. Other hot looks are an over-sized chambray shirt, a cotton or terry-cloth romper.

3. Suncreen!
While having fun in the sun, you cannot forget about your most important accessory, your skin! Despite being so easy to forget, protecting our skin is extremely important. In the long run, you will be thankful you protected your skin against damage, premature aging, and most importantly, skin cancer by simply applying some SPF on your days in the sun. We recommend looking for a sunblock that that is oil-free and water resistant so its good for your skin and long-lasting!

Festive Fashion for the Fourth

It’s all about the red, white and blue! Designer Tommy Hilfiger, who incorporates these iconic colors into so many of his designs said, “these colors reflect freedom, optimism and a youthful spirit,” and we couldn’t agree more.  On this holiday, whether your celebrating at a cookout with your family or heading to the beach, one look we recommend trying is a nautical style.  But don’t forget, you’re not the only fashionista limited to this color pallet, so try to find a way to make your look unique!

A great and easy way to incorporate blue into your outfit is adding anything denim.  Whether it be your favorite pair of blue jeans, or a chambray top over a blouse, denim is always a safe go-to.  If you’re attending a party a bit too formal for denim, a navy dress, skirt, or pair of high-waisted shorts are other great options.

If your closet is not full of bold, red items,  there are plenty of ways to add a splash of red into your look.  Bold red accessories, like a statement necklace are a great option.  A more casual outfit could be completed with a simple red scarf or headband.  As you put the final touches on your look, we recommend trying a bright red lip or polish.

If there is any holiday when you should rock your favorite white jeans, it is this one! A white sundress is also a great option, or if your outfit is already complete, bring along a plain white sweater or blazer to throw on, in case it gets chilly for the fireworks.

Rocking this patriotic color combo is not limited to just the 4th, its a classic style all summer!  When putting something together for the fourth, just keep in mind there are no rules! You certainly don’t have to balance out how much of each color you incorporate, we love when a simple belt or jacket pulls it all together. Here’s a casual outfit we put together using some plain and popular items this summer.

The opportunities to be festive this fourth are endless, so try to be a fun, unique, and patriotic fashionista this Independence Day. And remember, every STA store has tons of options, just waiting to be worn for the 4th!

-Catherine, fashioniSTA

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Take Your Style to the Max

If you’re looking to beat the heat in the latest trends this summer, be sure to fill your closet with plenty of maxi dresses. You are guaranteed to feel and look fabulous as your long skirt flows in the breeze on a beautiful day this summer. Coming in a variety of hems, shapes, and styles, there is the perfect maxi match out there for every woman.

How to accessorize your maxi
Some of my favorite looks are when women pair their dress with another trendy item, such as a denim jacket, cropped blazer, or fedora hat. Lightweight scarves can be summer appropriate, and can be worn as a headband to give the look a little something extra. When wearing a plain colored maxi don’t be afraid to wear big statement jewelry that complements the dress or skirt. If you tend to shy away from this style dress because you feel its shape can be sometimes unflattering, a wide belt around the waist could make all the difference. If you’re not sure what shoes to pair with your new maxi, you cannot go wrong with a simple pair of gladiator sandals or straw wedges (skinny heels tend to look out of place unless your dress is a little more formal).

These are some of our favorite fashionable celebs, each creating a completely different look with their maxi.

Where to wear your maxi
Floor-length dresses were once only synonymous with formal events, but this summer you’re sure to see this style all over the place. The beauty about purchasing a maxi dress or skirt is the amount of opportunities you will have to wear it. Depending on the material and how you accessorize, a maxi can be appropriate for a variety of occasions. Pairing a simple cotton maxi with a pair of sandals makes in the perfect cover up for a day at the beach. A patterned or more embellished maxi dress can be just what you need for a fancy dinner or cocktail party. Throwing some sort of blazer over a maxi can even make it office appropriate.

At our STA stores, we have collected quite a selection of maxi dresses this season, so be sure to ask about what we may have available in this style next time you stop in!

-Catherine, fashioniSTA

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Pretty in Peplum

One look that we are seeing plenty of this summer is the peplum hem on shirts, skirts, and dresses. A big hit in the 80’s and 90’s, this feminine, flirty, and flattering look is making a comeback as one of the most popular trends of the summer.  The peplum hem tends to be a tighter material item that cinches at the waist and flares out around the midsection, often resembling a tiny skirt.  There are a variety of ways that designers have utilized this style, making these items unique and timeless.

This style dress was recently worn by the breathtaking Angelina Jolie on the red carpet, but it certainly is not just for formal occasions. One of the greatest aspects about adding a peplum item to your collection is the variety of ways you can style this look.  Paired with jeans, a simple cotton peplum top could be the perfect look for a Sunday cookout, while pairing this same top with a pencil skirt and pumps could make it just the right look for a fun date night.

Even for those of us that wouldn’t consider their style particularly ‘feminine’ or ‘girly,’ leather peplum tops have been quite popular, and give this style a whole new edgier feel.  Peplum tops tends to be pretty plain in design, making them ideal to accessorize with a statement necklace or other bold jewelry, which is the perfect way to really make this look your own.

What we love most about this look is how flattering it can be on almost any body type, allowing us to hide any flaws while feeling fabulous.  Whether its a vintage piece from the 80’s or the latest design to hit the shelves,  a peplum item adds just the right amount of flare to any look.  On your next shopping trip keep your eyes peeled for the perfect peplum hem item to add to your summer wardrobe!

We’ve seen quite a few peplum style items in our own stores, so next time you stop in be sure to be on the hunt for a great deal!  If you’re rocking peplum, we want to see your look! Tweet us a picture at @staconsignment with the hashtag #peplum to share your style with us!

-Catherine, fashioniSTA

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5 Summer Shoe Trends

I’m a shoe-a-holic. There, I said it. I’m obsessed. I’m constantly on the lookout for a new pair—platforms, flats, stilettos, you name it. Why? Because no outfit is complete without the right pair of shoes. But as the seasons change, so must your shoes. While there are tons of different styles to try, I’ve selected my top five favorite new shoe trends for summer, so your outfit can sizzle all the way down to your toes.

1. Studs
Studs aren’t necessarily a new trend when it comes to clothing—grungy studded leather coats and pants have been in style for a few seasons now. However, take the trend to your feet with some fun studded flats this season. Try a pair of ballet flats with a studded toe or a pair of blinged-out loafers. You’ll be fashionable, fierce and comfortable.

2. Pointed Toe
The pointy toe is making a comeback! After years of round toed shoes, I’m ready for a change. This classic style is perfect for day and night. Try a simple black pointed stiletto to start; you can wear them to the office and out for drinks. Bonus: the pointed toe gives the illusion of longer legs—yes, please!

3. Transparence
Take a fashion risk with a trendy transparent element to your shoes. I’m obsessed with chunky open-toed platforms with a transparent heel.

4. Menswear Inspired
The menswear trend has always been pretty intimidating for me; I always have a little difficulty rocking an androgynous outfit. For those like me who think the trend is daunting, rocking a menswear inspired shoe is a great way to get the look without feeling too masculine. You can never go wrong in the summer with a pair of light brown brogues! I like to pair mine with a sundress or my high-waisted skinny jeans.

5. Spiky and Wild
Fashion is all about risks and standing out, and this summer that means rocking brightly patterned shoes. Think color blocking, cutouts, laces, and sky-high stilettos. Let these awesome shoes stand out on their own and pair them with a simple dress or crisp black skinnies.

~Alyssa, fashioniSTA

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How To Celebrate Your FashioniSTA Graduate

Last week, like thousands of other students, I graduated college. While the feeling is still somewhat surreal, the time has come to be forced into the “real world”. This is one of the biggest transitions in a young person’s life, and it should be celebrated! As a freshly minted graduate, here’s my list of helpful tips to commemorate your own fashioniSTA’s graduation.

My friends and I at my own graduation

What girl doesn’t love the gift of gold (or silver)?! Jewelry is one of my go-to gift options when it comes to major events, like graduations. Whether you choose a meaningful birthstone ring or a dainty necklace, you really cannot go wrong with jewelry. Unsure what type of trinket your grad will like? Stick with the old standbys: Tiffany and Yurman. You won’t go wrong.

Her It Bag
For the less traditional fashioniSTAs (like myself), I prefer my graduation gift to be a little less shiny and with a little more leather. I’m talking about that it handbag, the perfect designer purse that a college student would never own, but is absolutely essential for the working woman. This gift is a little trickier because each girl has her own style in mind, but I suggest something along the lines of Marc Jacobs, Chloe, Philip Lim or the ever-popular Louis Vuitton.

For those who don’t want to shell out for material items for their graduate, not to worry! After four years of dining hall food and ramen, there is nothing your grad won’t appreciate more than a delicious dinner. Choose a fun atmosphere where you can celebrate with family, good drinks and good food—you can’t go wrong.

~Alyssa, fashioniSTA

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Heatwave Hairstyles for Summer

Summer is a great time for experimenting with fun, bright new fashion trends. As the temperature gets hotter, I look for new means to work a sundress or a pair of cutoffs—and also to experiment with ways to tame my thick, long brown hair as the humidity takes its toll. I know I’m not the only one with heat wave hair struggles, so hopefully these new summer hair trends will help us rock flawless summer looks from hair to toe.

The first and most flexible hairstyle to rock this summer is an old standby: braids! But I’m not talking Pippi Longstocking pigtails—there’s so much more. The fishtail braid is a fun and easy style to try; I like pulling all of my hair to the side in a low pony and braiding it all into a fishtail. One of the greatest parts of a fishtail braid is that it looks great even when it’s a little messy, so it really takes no effort. Another great braid to try is a braid crown. For those who are a little more experienced in braiding, this style is definitely one to try. You can either braid part of your hair into a crown, or try your whole head of hair for a bohemian updo.

For those who want something a little simpler, don’t be afraid to play around with different buns! The topknot has been a favorite in fashion for a few years now, and it isn’t going anywhere. Take it to the next level by trying a topknot sock bun—the sock bun will add extra volume to your limp summer locks, and is the perfect look to take from day to night. For a gentler, more tousled look, try a loose bun at the nape of your neck. It’ll add some glamour to your look.

Finally, when it truly is too hot to deal with anything, you can always resort to a big floppy hat. It’ll hide your frizzies, protect your face from the sun, and requires no time or practice!

~Alyssa, fashioniSTA

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Four Spring Essentials Easily Under $100

Gearing up for warming weather is fun, but it can also be expensive. Here are four must-haves for this springtime season that will help you look like a trendsetter on the cheap.

1. Stackable bracelets
This is a great trend that anyone at any age can try. If you like to mix and match your jewelry, go all out with different colored bangles in all different sizes and shapes, no combination is wrong! Should you want to coordinate your look a little more, go with a similar color palette – like black and gold – and just mix and match different textures, such as a black leather bracelet paired with a few solid gold bangles.
Shown here: Various bracelets at Second Time Around in Haddonfield, NJ (starting at $18, call 856-354-9400 to order)

2. Printed Pants
Think you need to work at a fashion magazine to pull off this look? Think again! With the right kind of print, this springtime look can be worn during a family weekend event or to the office (if you work in a more casual workplace, of course). For a weekend look, go with a lightweight sweater in a solid color – white works best for the fashionably conservative, while cobalt blue works great for style extroverts. To transform this piece for the office, pair it with a neutral top and matching neutral-colored blazer and keep accessories minimal.
Shown here: Ralph Lauren pants at Second Time Around in Boston, MA ($49, call 617-247-3504 to order)

3. Chambray Top
The new closet essential is hands-down the chambray button-down. Perfect with white jeans or a printed skirt, chambray has become the new neutral, replacing plain, white button-downs. Break it out at work under a blazer or with a skirt, then dress it down for the weekend with linen shorts for those extra warm days.
Shown here: Rag & Bone top at Second Time Around in Boston, MA

4. Bright Floral Accessories
Springtime is the chance to break out the flower power, and there’s no better way to do so than in bright, bold colors. While matching your shoes to your handbag is an outdated fashion rule, if you match with a fun print, your outfit will look modern and fresh. Since these accessories are in such a feminine print, you can balance your ensemble by wearing them with pants and a button-down, like the chambray top in #3. Pair these printed accessories with a solid-colored outfit to avoid being overly busy, and you’ll be the envy of your next workday or weekend get-together!
Shown here: Betsey Johnson flats and Stuart Weitzman handbag at Second Time Around in Boston, MA ($32 for the size 7.5 flats, $79 for the handbag, call 617-247-3504 to order)

~Ashley, FashioniSTA

Taking Festival Fashion to Daily Life

Street style photographers assemble for hours outside of Lincoln Center during Fashion Week in the hopes of capturing the chicest outfits and most inspirational ensembles from the high fashion elite. However, with the rise in popularity of music festivals like Coachella, festival fashion has garnered its own notoriety. Those same street style photographers now crowd the barren desert campgrounds of Palm Springs, photographing hip concertgoers rocking the latest trends.

As a bit of a festival veteran (I, too, paraded around Palm Desert last spring for Coachella and have attended San Francisco’s Outside Lands festival a few times), I must warn you that festival fashion isn’t always the most wearable in day-to-day life. The desert heat and packed amphitheatres make crocheted crop-tops and high-wasted cutoffs seem okay—but that doesn’t really fly in day-to-day life. Here are a few tips so you can still rock those fun festival styles without hitting the desert.

1. Go Wild with PrintsFestival goers love their animal prints! Cheetah print tops, pants and jackets—you name it. Try this trend on the daily by switching up your normal blouse with a cheetah print one. Pair it with simple black pants and a leather jacket—you’ll be rocking festival style without being too outrageous. If you want to be a little more daring, choose a pair of animal printed pants or a wild leopard print jacket.

2. Crop It
I’ve never seen more crop tops than when I was at Coachella. While some of the girls paired their cropped tops with hip-hugging shorts or jeans, I don’t have that confidence. If you’re like me and just want to show a little stomach, try a crop top with a high waisted pair of slacks or a maxi-skirt (another festival staple). Finish off the look with a fun structured jacket or blazer.

3. Heavy Metal

The hardest part about rocking festival trends is that they’re not always appropriate for daily wear. However, the chicest festival goers always had one thing in common—awesome statement jewelry—which can be worn no matter the occasion. This trend is super easy to try and you can tweak it to match your own personal style. I like piling on the silver jewelry: numerous rings on my fingers, a solid silver arm party, and a spiky statement necklace. Make the trend your own by layering your own favorite jewelry pieces—the more the merrier!

~Alyssa, fashioniSTA

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