Monday, October 29, 2012

Look For Less

I've been looking high and low for this Zara Safari jacket with leather sleeves for months now.

This jacket was actually introduced last fall but it has reemerged on the scene again. It's such a hot commodity that its sold out on Zara's website. So I had to do the next best thing... I recreated the look for a lot less.

One day while I was browsing through my closet a light bulb went off in my head! I had an old leather jacket that I didn't get much use out of (from Forever 21) and an olive green jacket (which I can't remember for the life of me where I bought it). Since I can't sew (sidebar: I do want to learn in the very near future) I did the next best thing. Found a picture on the Internet of the jacket I wanted and took the two jackets to a local tailor. 

I asked the owner could they swap the sleeves of the leather jacket to the olive colored jacket. The owner said he's never done anything like it but he would sure give it a try. He mentioned that if I ever become famous as a stylist or designer (prophetic word wouldn't you agree :) ) that I keep their tailoring business in mind. Boy am I happy I took the risk! I absolutely am in love with the jacket. 

My jacket looks very similar to the original Zara jacket. Minus the fact that my jacket is a tad but longer in length, it has a hood, and the price to swap sleeves was significantly lower ($30) than buying the original which had a hefty price tag of $199.99.

All in all I am very pleased with the outcome. So much so that I rocked the jacket along with my fur stole from H&M, black leggings, booties, and snakeskin clutch from the "red boutique" aka Target to my farewell dinner on Friday! 

I can foresee this jackets future and I predict it will be in heavy rotation this fall before it transitions into winter. Word to the wise: if you can't find the look you want in stores or online you or a skilled tailor/seamstress can recreate the look and you may be able to do it for less! It's worth the try!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Box Braid Round Up

After doing ample YouTube, Instagram, and Tumblr research about box braids, I finally buckled down and joined the craze. And boy, am I happy I did. Box braids are NOTHING new. We've been rocking this style since we were tikes in the early 90s. Just like times of old this style is protective for your hair and is super convenient. I love to work out, but am always nervous to push it to the limit in fear that I will sweat out my natural hair and not be able to manage it. With box braids I can work out, swim, jump, sweat and not worry about how my hair will turn out. It's such a freeing feeling :)

Here's the thing: I tend to get bored with hairstyles very easily so I vowed if I was going to get box braids I would have to find different styles that I can attempt so that I wouldn't want to take out the braids a week after receiving them. Today's post will be a roundup of some of my favorite styles that I've rocked during the duration of my box braids. I've loved the braids so much, I just took my old set out and got them reinstalled this past weekend. 12 hours after beginning I have a fresh set of braids with an infinite amount of style possibilities. Check out some of my favorite box braid styles below.

Janelle Monae Pompadour, Ninja Bun, Side Bang, Twist Back and more!

As you can see, these braids are so versatile. My hair braider (S/O to Gyreasha for braiding my hair twice) said that I make her proud...taking full advantage of the different style ranges for the braids. So if I had to endorse this style...I would totally say it was worth it. Although I must admit, I miss my hair extensions (which I will get back soon). But for now I'm rocking with the box braids :)

Friday, October 19, 2012

The Red, The White, The Blue

After being totally engulfed in suspense, disbelief, and joy from watching my favorite show Scandal (a show about a crisis manager working to clean up political messes and scandals shown on ABC on Thursday nights at 10PM ET/9PM CT ) last night, I wanted to pay a tribute to my favorite scripted drama on television. Kerry Washington who plays the intelligent, witty, successful Olivia Pope inspired me to write this blog the RED, the WHITE, & the BLUE! There are no other colors which show patriotism to our country, the United States of America like red, white, and blue. I wanted to pay homage to this trio of colors which define a country of opportunity and of risk. This color combo is also a great alternative for all my fashionistas who want to look presidential and regal.

Here is my personal interpretation of how you can mix and match these awesome colors to come up with a blended masterpiece. If you get a few staples in each color (i.e. blue skirt, red blazer, white jeans, red pumps, blue belt etc.) there are endless possibilities of the outfits you can create!

These looks show off how you can create a monochromatic look even with the famous Red, White, & Blue trio. Notice I used red shoes with the all white outfit. There is a specific reason why.  I absolutely despise white shoes so with this outfit I used red as my pop of color (you could add a red clutch or purse to make the look a little more cohesive).

With these looks I used the same pair of blue colored jeans and paired it with a red, white, and blue blouse for each outfit. I exchanged white shoes for gray/silver to bring the looks together. You could always throw on a cardigan or blazer on top of the shirts to further polish your look.

This look reminds me of a casual weekend look when you are out running errands or something. The red and white star sweater is the clear show stopper in this look. The blue colored pants and red ballet flats pull the look together flawlessly.

I am a sucker for jumpsuits so when I found these two jumpsuits they automatically represented class, sophistication, and beauty. The thing I love most about jumpsuits are that they cover you up literally from head to toe but they still offer that hint of sexiness that every women possesses.

I know you may be thinking...white pants after Labor Day? Yes, that would be correct. If you can recall that rule was shattered in my Fashion Rules Demystified Blog Post a couple months ago. With this look I started with the white pants and white v - neck t - shirt. Then I created layers using this blue cardigan. I accented the look with a blue clutch, red booties, and a red and gold chain necklace for a little extra flare.

I wanted to give you an array of ways you could interpret this color combination. You can play up or play down the outfit to make it dressy or just business casual. It's totally up to you. Hopefully this post will expand your love for these presidential colors :) Oh, and don't forget to catch Scandal on me, you will not be disappointed.

Happy Friday Luvs...Be Safe, Have Fun!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Living My Life Like It's Golden

"I'm taking my freedom,
Pulling it off the shelf,
Putting it on my chain,
Wear it around my neck,
I'm taking my freedom,
Putting it in my car,
Wherever I choose to go,
It will take me far,

I'm livin' my life like it's golden
Livin' my life like it's golden,
Livin' my life like it's golden, golden,
Livin' my life like it's golden,
Livin' my life like it's golden, golden."

The snippet of lyrics above are from one of my favorite Jill Scott's song "Golden." This song gives off a narrative to let your light shine, toast to living your life doing what you are passionate about,  and live your life like it is indeed  "golden." This is a perfect segue into today's post. Today we will focus on golden attire (if you have yet discovered from the picture above). We will explore how to pull off wearing golden accents, shimmers, sequins and all in between so you can look as "good as gold" and not like a golden disco ball. Let's delve in shall we?

There are definite ways to slip a pot of gold into your wardrobe. Gold can be incorporated with shimmery tops (Alicia Keys), sequined dresses (Halle Berry & Cassie), gold pants (Ashanti), or even golden spiked shoes (Rihanna).

If you haven't had a gold rush yet, check out these metallic items that will give you a heart of gold!!!

The saying goes "everything that glitters is not gold"...but in this case get ya shine on!!!


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Pretty Peplums


pronounced pep-luhm is a Latin word which simply means:
a short full flounce or an extension of a garment below the waist, covering the hips.

I know you may be thinking okay you gave me the definition but what exactly is a peplum? Even though the word may seem unfamiliar I'm sure that you've seen at least one peplum as you've been browsing through a fashion magazine or rummaging through the racks of your favorite department store.
Peplums come in different forms. You can find peplums as shirts/blouses, skirts, dresses, coats, and even belts. If you are looking for a way to boost the class factor in your wardrobe I would definitely suggest snagging a peplum. This regal blueprint allows for you to look polished and sophisticated with simplistic ease. Check out how some of your fav celebrities were able to pull off this trend (in all black, all white, neutrals, and colors).

While doing some research for this blog post, I stumbled across this peplum belt. It almost reminds me of a holster, but I think is super dope

You can choose to color block your bright orange colored peplum blouse like my fashion Godmother June Ambrose. Or you can elegantly wow your audience with a bright yellow peplum like Solange. Or you can get edgy and pair your leather peplum with your leather leggings and boots like Tika Sumpter. There is no right or wrong way to sport a peplum. If you are still in the dark about what to wear with your peplum piece use the hints below:

Pair your peplum blouses with:
  • Pencil Skirt
  • Leggings
  • Colored Denim
  • Pumps, Platforms, or Stilettos

Combine these items with your peplum dress to stand out:
  • Clutch
  • Chained Purse
  • Colored Pumps (if you have a neutral colored peplum dress)
  • Cute statement jewelry (including rings, watches, necklaces, earrings etc.)
  • Belt

Combine your skirt with these items:
  • Button Up Blouse
  • Graphic Tee
  • Blazer
  • Pumps

Pair this peplum inspired outerwear with:
  • High Waist Trousers
  • Skinny Jeans
  • Plain White Tee
  • Button Up

Monday, October 15, 2012

Sunday's Best Recap: OOTD

I love Sundays! They are a day when I get to go to the house of worship to fill up on my dose of spiritual food to keep me prepped for the week. I get to catch up on Revenge (one of my fav scripted dramas on TV besides Scandal of course), and it's also a day when I get the GREATEST naps lol. I don't know what it is, but Sunday afternoons, on my navy leather couch, with my baby blue blanket wrapped up as the TV watches me sleep in a quiet slumber are the absolute best! I know you are thinking, what does this have to do with fashion? Well, I'm getting to that lol! I am relocating to live with my husband (FINALLY after 4 long years of long distance). So I picked out my outfits for the next two weeks until I move (in the midst of me packing up my entire closet). Yesterday, I must say...I loved the outfit that I put together so much that it made me write a blog post for it. My style inspiration was definitely the talented and beautiful Janelle Monae. With her classic take on black and white, she inspired me to take on this timeless color duo not to mention her awesome pompadour hair style!

Janelle Monae is the newest edition of the Covergirl family! She looks absolutely breathtaking in this pic, simply gorgeous

Here is my take on the Janelle Monae's look of course with a little twist (I only wanted to be inspired not a photo copy)! Hope you like it.

Capped Sleeve Top: K&G
Faux Leather Skirt: H&M
Tights: Walmart
Jessica Simpson Patent Leather Pumps: TJ Maxx
Snake Skinned Jumbo Clutch: Target
White Feather Earrings: Charming Charlie
Michael Kors Watch: Macy's
Lipstick: Nars Mascate
Lip gloss: Mary Kay's Red Passion
Hair Style: Inspired by a Youtube Post by Tiarra Monet (if you are interested to see how the style is achieved I will put the link to the video below)

These pieces all work well together. But the awesome thing is that they work well as separates. Meaning I could pair the white shirt with jeans and riding boots. Or I could pair the leather skirt with a black ruffled top and faux fur vest. I could pair the clutch with a mustard colored sheath dress and some nude colored pumps. You get the picture. All I am saying is that these pieces create a smorgasbord of outfit opportunities. Which I can't wait to begin to explore.

All in all Sunday was a great day! Although I didn't take my ritual Sunday nap I was blessed at church with a wonderful service and message, had good food and conversation with friends, I Face Timed my hubby, and was able to do it all while looking my best :)  Can't ask for a better day!

*If you want to achieve the faux pompadour look with your box braids check out this link:

Friday, October 12, 2012

"Street Sense" - Thrifting Edition

There is nothing more exciting to see, than someone who has a keen sense of style, with the ability to bring the runway to the pavement. I love to see how people uniquely interpret fashion into their own personal style; making it their own! Since I love both people and fashion I thought why not incorporate a reoccurring post called: "Street Sense" here on Ali's Fashion Sense.  I will write Street Sense ever so often highlighting fashionistas (and even Ali's Fashion Sense gentlemen's club members...aka the fellas...if they are interested) like you, who have an eye for fashion all while giving you a platform to show off your unique style.

My first edition of Street Sense showcases a young woman that I've know for quite some time now. I met her growing up at my dad's church and have seen her grow into a beautiful, sweet spirited, fashionable woman! She has a certain pizazz that always makes you want to see what she will be wearing next. She recently shared with me her love for thrifting or 2nd hand shopping as some may like to call it. So I interviewed her to get her take on how to thrift shop and walk away satisfied. I hope you learn a thing or two about this awesome trend.

Name: Kyra Crandol
Age: 23
Hometown: Detroit, MI

Thrifted Floral Jumpsuit and Anklet, Belt from Rave, Shoes from Bakers

What/who got you interested in thrifting?
 I believe that one of my first trips to the thrift store was with my best friend a few years back. When I first started thrifting I would only go once in a while, recently Ive become a compulsive thrifter
Thrifted Blouse, High Waist Christian Dior Trouser Capri Pants, Fendi Envelope Clutch, Pumps and Earrings from Guess

Why thrifting vs. shopping at the mall?
Don’t get me wrong, I still like to shop at the mall, I love mixing old with new! Although lately I’ve noticed that I have been thrifting more than I have actually been shopping at the mall. I like thrifting for the simple fact I can find classic vintage pieces that I know anyone else won’t have, for very reasonable prices. I love the quality of vintage clothing as well.

Looks from L to R: Thrifted Dress, Tights from JCPenny, Shoes from
Thrifted Dress, Tights from Walmart, Shoes from Payless
Thrifted Blouse, Suede Skirt, Fendi Envelope Clutch, Anklet, Shoes from Bakers, Watch by FLuD 

What’s your favorite piece you’ve found thrifting thus far?
I don’t honestly think that I can say that I have one favorite piece, I love them all!! My top 5 would have to be my:
1.) Red Christian Dior Coat
2.) Fendi Clutch (shown in post)
3.) Black and Gold Chain Carlisle Belt (shown in post)
4.) Pearl Detailed Cream Blouse
5.) Black Velvet Blazer.

Looks from L to R: Thrifted Men's Sweater, Leggings and Shoes from Forever 21
Thrifted Top and Earrings, Pants from TJ Maxx, Teal Moccasins from Target
Thrifted Jumpsuit and Earrings, Belt from Rave
Thrifted Jumpsuit and Carlisle Belt
Thrifted Jeans and Belt, Top from Love Culture, Jessica Simpson Riding Boots from Von Maur
Thrifted Sweater, Belt, and High Waist Denim Shorts, Combat Boots from Kohl's

What are some tips you have for my fashion sensers who want to begin thrifting?
1.) First and foremost if you want to find great pieces you have to be patient, I can spend hours in the thrift store looking through almost everything piece by piece.
2.) Don’t just limit yourself to the women’s clothing, I’ve found great pieces in the men’s section as well.
3.) Don’t leave without looking at the jewelry, bags, shoes, and coats.
4.) For some it may take a while to become “good thrifters”, with this I can speak for myself, I personally feel that I’ve become a better thrifter over the years, I’ve looked at pieces that I purchased when I first started thrifting and I thought to myself “what was I thinking when I brought this?”
5.) Some may be surprised but some thrift stores actually have sales, I know that the Salvation Army has student/teacher discount day every Thursday, if you show your id you receive 25% off your purchase, also every last Thursday of the month they have ladies night out where all women’s clothing is 50% off!
6.) Lastly thrifting is not “nasty” which a lot of people seem to think because the clothing has already been worn, I’ve found many pieces with the tag still on it. I also wash or dry clean my merchandise before I wear it.

While thrifting I live by the motto “One man’s junk is another man’s treasure”.

Looks from L to R: Thrifted Blouse, Belt, and Slacks
Thrifted Earrings and Blouse, Slacks from Sears
Thrifted Top, Levi's Jeans from Macy's, Shoes from, Michael Kors Watch, Studded Clutch hand made by Kyra

What is your definition of fashion?
To me fashion is being able to express myself through my clothing and accessories. The way I style my clothing is something that I have complete control over; I can change it up or try new things anytime I please. There are so many different things you can do with fashion, it never gets boring, I LIVE through and LOVE FASHION!

Looks from L to R: Thrifted Necklace, Top, and Carlisle Belt, Leggings from Forever 21, Shoes from Target
Thrifted Skirt, Shirt from Forever 21

I want to say thanks to Kyra for being my first feature on "Street Sense!" She was such an awesome sport. Kyra inspired me to step out into the world of thrifting (after doing this interview). I will be doing a post on the items I found during my first trip to the thrift store sometime next week if time permits. I hope you enjoyed this edition of Street Sense. If you are interested in being featured in an upcoming Street Sense post contact me at: in the subject line include: Street Sense Inquiry. Please include your name, age, and where you live. Also please submit 5 - 10 pictures which best showcase you and your style aesthetic. I will follow - up with the interview questions. Thanks for your support. It is much appreciated luvs.

TGIF Fashion Sensers :)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

You Just Got "Capped"

When I say the phrase..."you just got capped" what imagery comes to mind. When I hear capped I think mountains capped with snow, pop bottle caps, and capped toe shoes! This trend has plateaued to new heights, with the reinforced toe becoming a new norm. Offering classic elegance while showcasing a modern twist. You can dress these shoes up or down which makes them a great addition to your closet if you don't already own a pair.


These lovely ladies show us how to rock these capped toe pumps with anything from sheath dresses, jumpsuits, revealing gowns, leather pants and blazers, and even printed suits. As you can see the shoes are versatile and easy to keep it chill (like Beyonce' shows us in her black off the shoulder tee and leopard pants), classy (like my fairy Style God Mother *in my head* June Ambrose in her printed suit), or super glam (like Khloe Kardashian in her black jumpsuit, SN: let me just say I'm a SUCKER for a jumpsuit/romper).

They come in a plethora of styles as well. You can get them in neutral colors, ankle straps, spikes and studs, color blocked, and even in boots, pumps, stilettos, or flats. Needless to say, you can create an abundance of looks with just one pair of these capped toed beauties. Let me note that just like the variety of styles, colors, and detailing on the shoes, there are also a variety of price points. If you are balling out of control you can drop a stack ($1000 or more) on some red bottom capped toed shoes by Christian Louboutin or Yves Saint Laurent. But if you are balling on a restricted budget you can get the look for less provided by stores like Aldo, Steve Madden,, and my fav for as low as $30.


After reading this post will you officially become capped?

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Dreaming in 'Monochromatic" Color

First and foremost I want to apologize for being ghost the past few days. It has been hectic since I've last blogged. I went on a trip home, to Michigan! Which was non - stop action (shopping, catching up with friends, enjoying family, and great food). I have some fun post planned about that trip so stay tuned. I also, have been assigned to a new project at work, so my day is a more jam packed with less down time to blog. But nonetheless, I've missed my finger tips hitting the keys to my Macbook to bring you the latest and greatest in fashion! Since my day is just as chaotic as today, consider this a late night/early morning post (I promise I will try to do better...but I may not be able to post Monday through Friday the next couple of weeks, FYI)! But let's get to the task at hand.

OK, so I've mentioned this word monochromatic in a few posts previously. So I'm sure you are have heard this term (at least from this site, if not from somewhere else).  To recap monochromatic means:

a.) A boring fashion look
b.) A fancy word for color blocking
c.) Wearing a plethora of patterns
d.) Wearing the same color from head to toe

If you chose d, you are correct. Monochromatic simply means you are wearing the same color (or colors from the same color family/scheme) from head to toe. Although monochromatic means wearing one specific color it doesn't mean that your outfit has to be one note. Since Fall is here and in full effect here are some cool colors to play up with the monochromatic trend.

Jewel Tones: Purples, Ruby Red, Sapphire, Teal etc.
Neutrals: Gray, Black, White, Camel (Tan), Cognac, Cream etc. 

Take notes from these singers, actors, and models on how to pull off this awesome trend.

 Are you dreaming in "monochromatic" color yet? 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Frayed & Fringed

Let me first say...fringe is not a new trend nor a new concept. It has been around for decades. I love the airy feeling that fringe provides. It gives your outfit depth, dimension, and flare. There are many ways to utilize the fringe trend this Fall. You can find fringe jackets, boots, shorts, dresses, purses, and more.

I fell in love with this ombre fringed jacket that  I first spotted on Demi Lovato (the new host on the X factor). This pop crooner took this amazing statement piece and paired it with a mesh cutout bodycon dress and black peep toe pumps. She is giving off rock princess vibes while still offering an element of sophistication with pink dipped hair in all.

To my amazement this ombre fringe jackets has a matching pair of shorts. How bananas is that? I don't know if I would be daring enough to wear the pieces together (although I would sure give it a try), but I'm sure you could get great mileage out of these wonderfully crafted garments. They both can be found at Topshop.

Here are a few more jackets with fringe detailing (black leather jacket with fringe detail on the front and back, cream fringe leather jacket with studded details, and 70s inspired tye-dye fringed jacket). You can style these jackets with jeans, a tee, and some boots or with a cute bodycon dress and stiletto pumps. It is totally up to you!

Kim Kardashian is one of my style icons. She dresses really cute. Here she is rocking a a lovely satin midi dress with an embellished top and an adorable fringed cover up. She keeps her hair and pumps fairly simple to let the frayed fringe take center stage. In the middle pic she is carrying a fringe accessory to spice up her neutral colored outfit.

My fav singer B-Rocka is giving me life in this frayed Herve Ledger blush pink number. I like how she has the big hair, the gold jewelry accents, and the neutral colored peep toe pumps. YESSSSS, Mrs. Brandy! I see you boo.

 Here are a few more dresses with fringe accents. When you wear a dress such as this, less is more. Let the dress shine! Pair fringed dresses with neutral colored pumps/ballet flats, clutches, and jewelry.

If you don't think you can pull off an entire fringed dress opt out for a fringe cover up like Toya Wright (pictured left) wore. She paired it with white jeans, a white tank top, and a white fringed cover up! Her makeup is so flawless. The frayed cover up is also shown below in black. They paired it with a black tank, neon green skirt, and black booties. Since it's getting cold, I would definitely add some type of jacket (whether it denim jacket, blazer, or leather cropped jacket) to keep your arms warm.

The rest of the post showcases accessories with fringe detailing. Check out Ciara and Rihanna in their frayed boots/booties! Their shoes are absolutely amazing. I love the rest of the boots and bags shown below as well. They are simply gorgeous. Take a look for yourselves.


Believe it or not, I scored some really cute cognac colored (they also come in black) fringed boots from...(wait for it)...Kmart. Yes, you did read that right. I said KMart. They were only $35 (and better yet they are on sale now for only $14). You can't beat that price!  And they are pretty good quality. I plan to wear them this weekend when I go home to visit the fam in Michigan. If you'd like to order a pair here is the link:

Will you be getting frayed or fringed this Fall? I sure hope so. Happy Thursday luvs. One more day until the weekend :)