Fashion is meant to be art and one of the most aesthetic and original forms of self-expression. But, every now and then, someone does a one-step just a little too far. Here we have some guidelines on how to stay within the limits of this spring’s biggest fashion trends.

P.S. The world is your runway, if you choose to ignore fashion trends or any rules, hold your head high and werk it! 😉

10. Peplum Bustier

We adore all things peplum! Seriously, we’re so happy this trend stuck; flattering to the waistline and just plain fun. Throw in a bustier cut and all of a sudden your Betty Boop! However, if you aren’t careful with the cut, fabric, and details, you could quickly become a Madame of the Evening! Like Miss Thang, seen here:



Our suggestions? If it’s low cut, keep the fabric and color simple, like with this Nicholas top.



 If there’s a pattern, a modest neck line will do.



Oh, and avoid any corset-style laces, unless you really are in the boudoir. 😉

9. Cold Shoulder Top

We don’t think there’s any reason to give this trend the “Cold Shoulder.” (Tee-hee.) Although, we aren’t really sure why the off-the-shoulder top needed any sort of evolution. Maybe to hide bra straps? Anyhow, when done correctly, a peek-a-boo shoulder can be terribly sexy. But, be careful! It’s just an odd print or cheap fabric away from being cheesy! Check out this Elizabeth & James top- cute, classy, correct.

Elizabeth and James


We’d like to give the cold shoulder to these tops. (Sorry, we couldn’t resist the pun twice.) 😉 The key to nailing this one, like most, is to keep it simple.



70’s Wall paper pattern and cold shoulders? Enough said.



8. Plaid

We’re mad for plaid! Yes we are, gingham too. It’s all so pretty, especially when blue!

Okay, so maybe we’re writing this post a little late and getting slap-happy. But, it’s true; plaid is classic and not just for the winter. In fact, we’re pretty obsessed with this Victoria Beckham dress. If only it didn’t cost about as half as much as Victoria’s boobs.



One last rhyme: If you’re going to don gingham or plaid, stick to one pattern, don’t go mad!



7. The Bandage Dress

Despite its name, this trend really shouldn’t cause any pain. And, we have to give the bandage dress props for standing the test of time. It’s just too bad that when we think of this style, we can’t help but think of girls in platform stacked stilettos falling not only out of a nightclub at 3 a.m., but out of their too-tight bandage dresses. And their heels aren’t the only things that are stacked (tee-hee). So, if you decide to mummify your bod, do it in a way that says class not ass. We’re throwing some love and respect to the original, Mr. Herve Leger. This peplum cut dress is form fitting, but not too low cut. Just the right amount of sexy.



Now, this bandage dress? The cut out midriff, underboob, and color-clashing color-blocking design turn this dress into pure mozzarella. Pizza anyone? PicsArt_1464092465102


Here we have a print better suited for drapes (bad ones) blended with the cold-shoulder trend for an absolute disaster! How NOT to wear the bandage dress.



6. Victorian Style

We really wanted to refrain from any Seinfeld references; especially, since we are totally dating ourselves with the mention. But, when the Victorian trend goes awry, it is puffy shirt wrong.



So, how does one not overdo the Victorian trend? Try not to look like you walked off the set of the latest Jane Eyre film. In other words, the outfit should not be a costume but rather have a Victorian influence. The hip new brand, Self Portrait, is basically founded on this premise of gentle influences. Check it out!

SPOF-WD43_V1 (1)


So, how does one overdue the Victorian look? Well, we never want to say anything bad about Elie Saab, but this dress is either for the Met Gala, the Runway, or a movie. (We still actually think it’s pretty Elie :-))


5. Pleats

Pleats can send both fear and excitement into the hearts of the fashionista! The key to wearing pleats is to know your body type. Smaller pleats will generally look good on everyone. The larger the pleat, the more well, room to grow. For example, notice how the pleats at the top of this Alice & Olivia dress are cinched for a better fit:



This Rebecca Taylor skirt would flatter most:



On the other end, this Lafayette skirt has the propensity to be a bit dowdy at any age (at least, in our opinion). Unless you live in an Amish community. Then it might be perfect.



4. BoHo Chic

Want to yell to the world that you’re a carefree spirit? Want to send out vibes of peace, love, and happiness? Well then, grab a boho dress a wide leather belt and hit the road. Just don’t pile on much more, because BoHo is a no-go when you over accessorize. This pretty silk dress we found at anthropologie is relaxed and ready to lay back at the latest festival and drink in the sun and tunes.



Again, another example of gentle influence from Self Portrait. So gorgeous!



So, what do we consider boho gone bad? We admit it, our model friend pictured below looks pretty cool. But, that’s because she’s a model. It’s her job folks. In real life, forgo the bloomers and socks and try a pair of white skinny jeans. You might want to downsize the bag too. 😉



3. Cut Outs

Does anyone remember those god-awful prom dresses circa 1995 or so- the ones with the cut-outs at the waistline and lots and lots of sequins? Well, the cut-out trend is back, except in the past 20 or so years, it’s had time to grow up. Cut outs can be elegant. However, they can also be horribly trashy. So much so, that one might as well throw on a pair of acrylic heels, carry around a folding chair and make a few extra bucks (we kid). But, seriously, take a look at every high end store and you will see cocktail dresses flashing a little bit of rib. Try to tell us the back of this Cushnie Et Ochs dress isn’t sophisticated AND hot?



 A side-by-side comparison of good vs. evil in the world of cut outs? Nicholas does a great job on the left. Honey on the right? No comment… other than good thing she has a hand.



 2. Culottes

Please don’t wear these. That’s it.

1. Bell Sleeves

When done right, the bell sleeve adds elegance to any ensemble. We’re pretty sure it’s going to stick around through the fall. So, pay attention ladies. Just like with all of the other trends, the key to doing this right is to keep it simple. The following dress falls flat. The two different patterns, colors, and materials diminishes the impact of the sleeve, and all we’re thinking now is wow, someone just got their first sewing machine.



Instead, think Jacquie O’ or Audrey Hepburn. Milly got it right with their gorgeous Selena dress. It was so popular the white sold out in a blink of an eye.



We also adore this Nicholas top. So pretty! We see it with a pair of ivory pants or a white pencil skirt at an evening affair, sun setting, warm wind blowing, sparkling rose in hand… ah, lovely!



Cheers! Enjoy the fashion this spring and we’ll be back with another Top Ten next month.

Jess & Kim 🙂