Tag Archives: Urban Outfitters

Party Dressing Part I

It started out as a simple enough task – find a dress for under $100 for New Year’s Eve. After perusing the Internet between holiday layovers and food comas for several days I decided to abandon this quest and look for inspiration in separates at any cost.

[A GIANT, INTENTIONAL SIDE NOTE which can be skipped at your discretion.

If you are looking for a Herve Leger body con bandage dress you will have no problem finding a copy under $100. I saw several but my conscience (yes I do have one!) won’t allow me to post any here (because that trend is over). But if you’ve been doing Cross-fit/Zumba/whatever for months and are attending a party where you’ll have to see your ex and his new girlfriend/fiancée/whatever then MORE POWER TO YOU – go buy one immediately and smoke up the room.

Now is the time when I could go a rant about how ridiculously short dresses are in general and how little companies think about the needs of a woman in her 20s or older who is trying to maintain a professional yet exceedingly stylish lifestyle at a decent price. I just want the option, nay the freedom, to choose to cover my behind. But I DIGRESS…]

You become painfully aware of how slow fashion trickles down from the runway. The full, calf-length or midi skirts that walked Louis Vuitton and Prada runways in the Fall 2010 collections were mesmerizing but apparently not enough so for anyone other than fashion-forward Topshop to try.

Louis Vuitton Fall 2010 Ready-to-Wear

From this inspiration I crafted two looks which I suppose I will endeavor to find in the long term in thrift stores and sale alerts but I’m not optimistic about making the New Years deadline.

Look #1

This look:

Top – Urban Outfitters, Pins and Needles Scalloped Lace Piped Tank Top, $39

Skirt – Topshop, Premium Leather Skirt in light grey, $250

Gloves – Diane von Furstenburg, Windsor Lace Gloves, $120

Shoes – Jessica Simpson, Kendale Pump, $79

Look #2

This look:

Top – Dolce & Gabbana, Flannel and Lace Bustier, $663

Skirt – Topshop, Rust Calf Length Cupro Skirt, $100

Glasses – Jason Wu, Viola Spectacles, $278

Necklace – Juicy Couture, After Hours Multi Chain Floral Torsade Necklace, $90

Purse – Chloé, Aurore leather duffle bag, $1,800

Merry Christmas!

– From the Desk of Wade and Associates



Filed under Fashion

How to Ride in Style

Long-time friend and Austin, Texas resident Erin asked me where you could find a cute backpack for bicycling to work and bars on a road bike. She has two leather backpacks which do not work in the humid Austin, Texas weather. Austin is a hip city and one cannot go riding around with any ole thing on one’s back. She loves a canvas backpack they are carrying at Urban Outfitters but it is a little too large. I asked her about messenger bags and she said she was open to them but that they slide forward when she is riding and create imbalance. She needs a medium sized-bag for holding the following items: “wallet, phone, umbrella, apple, swimsuit, small make-up bag, book.”

Bicycle Solutions

Not to be overlooked are some simple bicycle solutions which allow ladies to carry a wider range of bags.

Bicycle Type – Upright Styles

In fact, many commuter and road bicycles are integrating the upright position for comfort. You won’t be able to draft with Lance Armstrong but you will be able to carry a cross-body bag more easily. Whenever looking for a commute-friendly bicycle, features like chain guards (won’t snag a skirt), fenders (keeps dirt/mud from getting on clothes), and a bell (hey! close that car door) can be very helpful. Be aware that a fully enclosed chain guard or drive train requires a screwdriver if the chain jumps the gears, unlike a half-enclosed version, a lesson learned the hard way on my cruiser.

Biria CityBIKE series 700C-Lady in Sky Blue

Bicycle Accessories – Bicycle Racks and Baskets

A bicycle rack (fits above the rear wheel) or a basket (in front of the handlebars or on top of the rack) are other handy ways for carrying bags/purses. They will also save your back and shoulders. It may require some measuring or a trip to the bicycle shop to find a rack that fits the bicycle as they are not one size fits all. A satchel or purse can be tied down or hung on the rack in some cases with a cute, vintage scarf. Just make sure that the purse and scarf do not get caught in the wheel and that they are very secure.

Bag Solutions

Bag solutions are summed up conveniently in the following graph:

Bag Chart for Chic Stylists

Convertible Backpacks

If someone is just sitting around waiting for a million dollar idea to fall in their lap – look no further. I could only find one decent looking (non-leather) one online, by Alexis Hudson, and it is $225. Practical and potentially fashionable, a convertible backpack would be the ultimate solution if you can find one for a reasonable price.

Alexis Hudson Microfiber Convertible Backpack – $225

Fossil Heirloom Convertible Backpack (A leather version, maybe for non-Texans or winter months) – $188


Backpacks are comfortable and functional for cyclists but they don’t translate well for a dressier night scene. Urban Outfitters is a good place to look for nylon and canvas backpacks. Fred Flare currently has a recycled canvas backpack for $32. The design is simple and there are several colors. With a little thread, buttons, paint or an iron-on design it would make a great canvas for your creativity.

Fred Flare Recycled Canvas Backpack – $32

BDG Nylon Backpack – $48

Medium Cross-body Bags

There are lots of medium-sized cross-body bags and many have removable shoulder straps. Wider shoulder straps are preferred. Unfortunately many stylish ones are leather and apparently out of stock!

Everyday Essentials Bag – $149.99 (Out of Stock but a good example nonetheless)

Canvas and Vinyl Pocket Tote Bag (Out of Stock, ditto)

Annabell Canvas Tote – $128

Messenger Bags

Messenger Bags are a style of medium cross-body bags. They typically feature two buckles which close a top flap and are large enough to carry whatever it is that bicycle messengers carry. Luckily they are usually made from a breathable fabric like canvas.

Sound & Matter Valda Scout Messenger Bag – $32.50

Jenna Bag by Mimo Handbags – $89

Rugby Canvas Military Tote – $98

Cross-body Clutch

Totally impractical and yet adorable. Cross-body clutches won’t allow you to drag paperwork to the office but they will fit into a backpack to be removed for happy hour. Cross-body clutches are also nice because you can dance hands free without leaving your bag unattended or on a sticky dance floor.

Regal Tender Bag $65.99

J Renee 8031 Clutch – $80.12

Melie Bianco W9-340 Clutch – $52-$68 depending on color

Other blog articles about commuting and style:




Filed under Bags

Friday’s Fab Finds under Fifty ($50)

Nothing like a Friday work break to check the latest and greatest online sales. Yes most of them are summer-y and light-weight dresses but short enough to be worn over leggings (or jeggings) and with a belted sweater for fall. If you are fans of Free People, Roxy, or J.Crew you should especially take a look at their sales right now.

Favorite Steals

Free People Into the Wild Dress $40 – originally $98

Free People Into the Wild Dress

Anthropologie Long Embrace Cardigan $50 – originally $100

Anthropologie Long Embrace Cardigan in Gold

Kensie Viola Logo Temple Sunglasses – $50

Kensie Viola Logo Temple Sunglasses

Newport News Fish-Scale Textured Ballet Flats – $19 – originally $30

Newport News Black Fish-Scale Textured Ballet Flats

More Goodies

J.Crew Ruched V-neck Dress $25 – originally $60

J.Crew Cascade Ruffle Dress – $50 – originally $80

J.Crew Rogue Ruffle Dress – $50 – originally $88

J.Crew Sale Dresses

Roxy Hazlenut Sun Convertible Dress – $19 – originally $45

Roxy Train Journey Dress $50

Roxy Skip Around Dress $19 – originally $40

Roxy Sale Dresses

Express 2-in-1 Lace-Back Dress $48 originally $80

Express 2-in-1 Lace Back Dress

Urban Outfitters Sparkle & Fade Knit Cutout Back Flare Dress – $48

Urban Outfitters Sparkle & Fade Knit Cutout Back Flare Dress

Kensie Stella Cat’s Eyes Sunglasses- $50

Kensie 'Stella' Cat's Eye Sunglasses


Filed under Sale