Dear Santa

Dear Santa,

While the snow hasn’t begun to fall yet, I know the time of year has come when you’re expecting my Christmas list of wants and wishes.  After working hard and trying to stay out of trouble, I’m positive to be on your nice list this year. That being said, I’ll try and keep my list somewhat short and only give you 5 of my obsessions for this season.

1.  Leather – in the form of leggings, a quilted jacket, or a chic dress (you know, like the one Jennifer Aniston wore from the Celine collection).  It’s so edgy, so fresh, and so classic, especially when worn with a tastefully simple shoe and eye catching lipstick. Less is more with a leather inspired ensemble.

2.  Glitz – whether in the form of a pair of shoes, sequins blazer, studded handbag, or shiny new watch, tis’ the season to sparkle and be bold. Even something as simple as adding a bit of sparkle and shine to your nails can step up a look! I’m loving Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci’s buckled sandals as well as Kate Spade’s glittered bags. It’s a must have for the season.

3.  Going Green – Trying to remain the good girl that I am, I find it important to do what I can for the environment even if it’s the tiniest change. This season, I’d like to add to my cabinet an eco-friendly water bottle such as the Klean Kanteen, which is made from stainless steel, eliminating the use for plastic water bottles so much. It even has several lids I can switch out depending on whether or not I’m drinking a warm chai tea or ice cold water!

4.  Accessories galore! There is nothing better added to an outfit than the perfect accessories, wouldn’t you say? I know you understand my obsession with belts and buckles! This season, it’s about mixing and matching different lengths, textures, and styles of jewelry. You can stack up a pile of bangles on your wrist, right next to your watch or throw on numerous necklaces, mixing pearl and jewel if you’d like! Monogram is back and bigger than ever. Gold necklaces and rings initialed with your personal letters let anyone and everyone know just who’s stylish. The possibilities are endless!

5.  Lace and suiting – but not the frilly kind of lace around the tops of my socks which my Mom used to make me wear with my saddle shoes when I was 5. I’m talking about sophisticated lace. One that oozes a sense of demure and romanticism. And let’s not underestimate the appeal of a menswear inspired look. Take an example from Elizabeth Olsen who dressed in Chanel from head to toe in a crisp button up tucked into a pair of high-waisted, wide legged pants. Sophisticated, yet always chic!

There are a ton of choices out there and I know you are busier than ever; therefore, I hope I’ve given you enough tips for just a few of my favorite things this season. When in doubt, ask Mrs. Clause for advice. And as always, the cookies and milk will be in the same place!

Love,

Nichole

Sole Searching

Celine

Lacing and tassels and buckles…oh my! Simply put, the previous statement sums up my feelings on this fall’s shoe trend.  2011 has, thus far, been a giant tidal wave of different fads, gushing in at the same time, so why should the footwear trend lead us any differently?

I feel as though designers around the world all gathered together and decided to attach the phrase, “No woman left behind,” to this fall’s shoe craze, for there is a shoe to fit each woman’s taste this season whether it be point or wedge, bright or subtle, animal print or animal fur, tall, short, satin, suede, straps, yada, yada, yada…

So where do you begin when the choices are endless? Well, let’s start with what is carrying over from spring.  Wedges were the ideal shoe to have this past spring and summer and they’re not going anywhere for fall! This is because they offer so many different looks and allow your feet to remain comfortable. Depending on the quality of wedge you purchase, you could wear these all day without a crying peep from your feet!  Since you normally don’t wear open toed wedges going into winter, fall’s wedges have closed up their toes and grown into booties or tall boots.

Sam Edelman "Ria" booties

For those of you who are unfamiliar, booties are a boot that stops right around the ankle area. I don’t want you thinking they are the same knit booties, sometimes with horses or ducks on them, found on babies. No, no…those are not in style for adults.

Even if you are not taking the wedge route this season, comfort is still available for you.  No need to dread those skinny heeled stilettos you can only wear for a few hours tops.  The chunky heel is back and better than ever. In the past few years designers have taken a larger risk with the base of their shoes, making some of them very avant garde.  While they’re not as outlandish this year,the heel is still making a statement by being circular, triangular, and classic square.  Any and all offer its owner comfort and confidence needed to walk tall and without a face that reads, “I’m in pain!”

Another large trend gushing in everywhere this fall is lacing! You’ll find real and faux lacing everywhere you look this fall on anyand every kind of shoe!  But unlike the feminine lacing we saw for spring, this fall it’s all about aggressiveness and adding a bit of a hard edge to your shoe.

Emilio Pucci

Emilio Pucci

Animal prints aren’t going anywhere and even more animals have been added to the mix! In the past few years we’ve seen mainly leopard and zebra spots and stripes; however, get ready to notice snake pattern, tiger stripes, and crocodile galore! Whether you prefer the real deal or the non-cruelty route there are more than enough options available.

While there are about a dozen more shoe trends we could cover, I want to pin point one more of my all time favorites. Forget the pennies and the fact that mainly teachers and businessmen wore them in the 1990’s, loafers are back! Call me crazy (and most of the kids at the time did), but when I was in elementary school, all Iwanted was a classic pair of brown penny loafers.  Maybe it was because I wanted to become a teacher then and my Kingsbury role models were wearing them but I remember my friends thought I was crazy for wanting to wear such a silly looking shoe. Well, I knew they were stylish back then and they’re still stylish now, only the loafers today would have made even my most non-believing friends think they were the beez-neez! Now in patent leathers, heeled, and uber chic, these shoes are a must have this year!

Alexander Wang

It’s never too early to start your search for fall shoes and remember to invest a little bit more for those boots you want to last you more than one season!