Saturday, December 30, 2006
New Year's Eve outfits
New Years Eve outfits have always been a big deal to me. You want to look fantastic and stylish but, you don't want to look like you're trying too hard. In a perfect world, aka in my dreams, all parties would be posh cocktail parties and everyone would be wearing cocktail dresses and 4-inch Louboutins.

Right. So, I don't know how many of you have parties like that to attend. Much to my disappointment, I don't, and wearing a cocktail dress to New year's eve would probably seem a little crazy to everyone I know. With that in mind, here is my number one suggestion for finding a great new year's eve outfit for a fun, yet laidback NYE with friends: head to your local Forever21.

First of all, never underestimate the power of stores like forever21 on new year's eve. I know their stuff isn't particularly exciting or even well-made, but they have tons of cheap, cute, flashy tops that are perfect for one-time use on new year's eve. Personally, I like this one and maybe even this one if you really like sequins (their website won't let me post pictures). It doesn't hurt that everything at forever21 works for college student budgets, too.

Pair your top of choice with dark slim jeans or a cute skirt, and don't forget to add amazing shoes (I'm going with silver ballet flats), a cute little clutch or shoulder bag, and just the right accessories, like tiered chandelier earrings, a chunky gold necklace, or a slew of colorful bangles. One terrific standout accessory should be just enough.

Happy New Year's Eve!

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Tuesday, December 26, 2006
Some of my latest web obsessions
Someone asked me an interesting question recently: why do I choose to read fashion blogs over other fashion publications? Personally, I love fashion blogs because of the wide range of perspectives, the multitude of blogs out there, and the frequent updates--as opposed to waiting for your new issue every month. Aside from Lucky magazine, which I adore, I've pretty much made the transition from magazines over to blogs seamlessly. Here's a few that I've become particularly obsessed with lately, as I waste my winter break free time on the internet:

Sharplily: I think this website's slogan "sweet finds for smart girls" definitely resonates with many college students. I, for one, have never been particularly capable when it comes to financial matters, especially when dealing with my shopping habits. I absolutely LOVE Sharplily because not only do they feature tons of "sweet finds" on a budget, but read their "about" page and you'll find that they agree with me that style is not just for those with money. Though it maybe a challenge, those of us less blessed in the monetary arena can be just as stylish as the Park Avenue Princesses.

StyleDiary: This site is fun because you get to browse through the creator's never-ending slideshow of creative outfits, but the articles are even better, in my opinion. I love the features, such as the new Chicago shopping guide (since everyone at TCW is based in Chicago, we looove this), and the "toolbox" articles never fail to offer interesting perspectives and helpful tips ranging from new year's eve outfits to how to recover from a fashion slump. Plus, you can join MyStyleDiary and create your own lookbook of outfits. Personally, I have nowhere near the amount of time necessary for a StyleDiary, but it looks like fun!

Ivy League Chic: Here's another blog devoted to college life and fashion. The writer is a student at Cornell and always has a fresh perspective to offer on such things as Lindsay Lohan's deteriorating style, the differences between Miss America and Miss USA (trust's interesting), and my favorite topic, "Sheep Style"...aka the style of millions of fashion-impaired college girls across America.

Almost Girl: This is the personal blog of Julie Fredrickson, founder of Coutorture Media. What I love about Almost Girl is that Julie, a University of Chicago graduate who dubbed her blog "Where Plato and Prada Meet," blogs about both fashion, life, news, arts, culture, media, politics...her blog is a veritable smorgasbord of not only fashion but everything else interesting about life.

Hope everyone is having a great holiday!

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Sale Alert!

Girls, check out the Arden B sale - there's some fantastic stuff going at really great prices!

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Pierre Hardy

I really want this Pierre Hardy Besace handbag. It's been around for a while - I think it's S/S 06 but I'm not really (yet) of the opinion that you're fashion roadkill if you're carrying last season's bag. In any case it's still up on the Pierre Hardy website, which probably means it's still available, which means if anyone wants to buy me a $1400 post-Christmas gift, please call 33 (0)1 42 60 59 75.

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How To Wear Ankle Boots
This is a very tricky trend, I know a lot of people hate the ankle boot revival because they feel that it's yet another unfortunate throwback to 80s fashion, it only works for 6-foot-tall supermodels, it makes legs look chopped-up and all that jazz. However, fashion is about taking risks. And just like boyfriend sweaters, ankle boots are very hot if you know how to wear them right. That said, I believe that experimenting should not come at the cost of aesthetics, so Use Your Judgement. And the more experimental looks in this case should probably be reserved for those of you blessed with legs up to there.

The hardest look to pull off is bare legs and ankle boots. It can, however, work if the boots don't cover your ankle fully and if the colour matches your dress.

A safer route is to wear opaque (or sheer but dark) tights. If you have extremely long legs, you can experiment a little bit with the colour of the tights. If not, go for a colour that matches the colour of the boots so that the line of your leg will remain unbroken.
Even if you do have long legs, the best thing is to stick to dark colours or colours in the same family as the colour of the boots. Too much variation can be just as bad as bare legs. An elongating monochrome look would be very stylish. For instance, I just ordered this black wool skirt (on sale for $29.99!) from Gap, which I'll be wearing with black tights and black ankle boots. I'll probably add a dash of colour on top, but I'm going to stick to dark tones.

Or try longish leggings with just a hint of skin showing above the boot. I know public opinion is that leggings are so not cool anymore, but I think this is one case in which wearing leggings wouldn't have the fashion police chasing after you with sirens blaring. Especially with a long sweaterdress or a gorgeous tunic, this would be very chic indeed.

Trousers arguably don't let you show off your stylish boots to their fullest advantage, but trousers are much easier to work with. Almost any kind of trousers will be fine, and long after ankle boots have gone out of style, you can wear them with trousers and no one will be any the wiser that you're wearing something so (gasp!) untrendy.

Skinny jeans can be great with ankle boots as Kate and Sienna have demonstrated to the world, but like I've said a thousand times - most girls, unfortunately, are not Kate and Sienna. Which means, if you're uncomfortable with skinny jeans, don't make yourself a slave to fashion.

If you are going the skinny jean route, look at this picture of Mary-Kate, it's hilarious because that's an awful shirt, clearly it was the hairstylist's day off, and those boots bear startling resemblance to medieval torture devices (I think they're Balenciaga, am I right?) but ironically it illustrates a good way to wear ankle boots, even for petite girls like the Olsen twins.
Just do it with a bit more flair - lose the plaid shirt, go for something equally striking but more feminine, flowing, sexy. And don't make it a very high maintenance look. Don't just walk out with MK's bedhead but keep things simple. With your skinny jeans showing off those great boots, keep the other accessories to a minimum.

Or wear your ankle boots with a pair of cute pinstriped trousers. This look would work for internships, interviews, etc, and you'd feel confident and stylish without showing your (future) employers too much attitude.

Try ankle boots with straight-leg jeans or slightly flared jeans. Just don't wear them with widelegged trousers, because that's going to make you look like you have ambitions of working in the circus.

If you're feeling courageous, you could try ankle boots with cropped pants. Top it off with a killer jacket and it could work -- give it a shot if you're feeling experimental, but I would say this would be best if you had really long, lean legs.
Add a healthy dose of confidence and ready, set, GO!

(By the way, a trick for making your legs look longer-than-long in a hot minidress: wear nude shoes. Even Cameron Diaz with her Hollywood legs works this look.)

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Monday, December 25, 2006
Hope everyone's having a fantastic holiday, full of shopping and candy and presents!

Here are some cozy, festive sweaters to enhance the mood :) I know Christmas will have come and gone before you'll have time to get your hands on these goodies, but in most parts of North America winter is here to stay for a good couple of months so it's never too late to spread some cheer by wearing a reindeer on your chest, a la Mark Darcy! Don't worry I'm not advocating reindeer chic, all the sweaters I've picked are perfectly sane, subtle and stylish.

Free People Holiday Pixie Sweater, $98 at UrbanOutfitters.

J Crew Luxe Norwegian Sweater, on sale for $59.99
This is adorable but unfortunately very few sizes are left.

Ralph Lauren Blue Label Autumn Fair Isle Cardigan, on sale for $199

Banana Republic Shawl Collar Cardigan, on sale for $102.99
Or try a Gap Patterned Cardigan at a friendlier $79.99
Both are 100% wool, 100% comfy, 100% subtle and stylish.

And then I hit the motherload at -
Victoria's Secret Snowflake Crop Cardigan, $59

Victoria's Secret Fair Isle Pointelle Cardigan, $34.99

Victoria's Secret Fair Isle Crewneck Sweater, delicious for $19!

Victoria's Secret Cableknit Trapeze Sweater, $49
This doesn't have any sort of festive pattern on it, but the colour is undeniably festive and it's such an attractive shape! Also this is the easiest sweater to wear again and again after the holidays are over.

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Saturday, December 23, 2006
Cute coats
Kimchi and Blue Asymmetrical Ruffle Collar Coat, $140 at UrbanOutfitters.
The ruffles and the sassy thigh length of this coat make it perfect for fashion-forward college girls.

J Crew Double-cloth Lady Day Coat, on sale for $209.99
A simple, classic coat but get it in this fantastic forest pine colour and you're ultra-stylish -- clearly I am feeling the green lately!

Victoria's Secret Flared Coat, $138
Love the feminine shape with those military-style buttons. Take a cue from the model and rock it with those skinny jeans and patent leather flats!


Friday, December 22, 2006
Oh, holiday procrastination...
So I'm cooped up in my house right now during the holidays, with no one but my crazy relatives and my laptop for company, so here I am on blogger! This week, I finally began my holiday shopping--I know. After 4 months of little to no shopping in the cornfields of central Illinois, it was refreshing to visit all my favorites stores on Michigan Avenue and State Street in Chicago.

I was particularly interested to see the new Macy's, because as you all know, the Marshall Field's on State St., a store steeped in Chicago history, was recently converted to Macy's and no one in Chicago is happy about this. Call me a traitor, but...the new Macy's wasn't bad! I spent an inordinate amount of time hovering over the Lush bath products and cosmetics, which all just smelled SO GOOD that I couldn't tear myself away.

Therefore, even though it is two days till Christmas, I know some of you out there share my eternally procrastinating tendencies, so I am posting another holiday gift under $20: Lush's Karma Kream moisturizer. Actually, if you really want to get picky, it's 21.60, but worth every penny. This lotion has an absolutely amazing, exotic fragrance that lasts all day, and is really effective on dry skin.

Blogger is being problematic this evening and won't let me upload a picture of it, but you can all check out Karma Kream and all of Lush's other fabulous products here.

Happy holidays!

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Thursday, December 21, 2006
Otte NY
Ohhh dear I think I made a big mistake not buying that green dress.
Was looking around Otte NY, and found this See by Chloe dress, almost identical to the dress I didn't buy, for US$400 :/ Admittedly, the back is a sexier deep V, but I think the Warehouse dress was a much prettier green - and of course it was far more affordable. I think I'll go there today and see if they still have it. Fingers very very tightly crossed!

Also, here's a shoe TF found that looks quite similar to Katie Holmes' cute red flats. Dru patent leather flats in yumi red, and indeed they are quite yummy. Almost as yummy as Katie's, and at $104 probably a lot more affordable than whatever she's wearing.
Nevertheless, continue to let me know if you find shoe similar to hers or somehow manage to get your hands on the holy grail itself -- mary-jane ballet flats are hothotHOT.


Wednesday, December 20, 2006
Bags I Want For Christmas
I think I've mentioned before that I have a bag fetish. It hasn't really reared its head lately, apart from that Goldenbleu clutch, but I realised that there are some insanely expensive bags that I've been coveting. Unfortunately, despite a similar lack of spending power, unlike Nisha I can't stop myself from looking at pretty things! I wish I had the willpower. So I just thought I'd let you know. In the spirit of sharing and free speech and all that, you know... By the way, they are bags that are very practical for college use, if you have sufficient spending power. I know

Miu Miu Peggy Vitello Shoulder Bag, $890 at Neiman Marcus

Orla Kiely Greenberries Laptop Bag, $368 at Anthropologie

Anna Corinna City Tote, $396 at Otte NY

Aso Oke Two-Way, $398 at Anthropologie
In terms of functionality, this is very similar to the Anna Corinna - it can be carried as a tote or folded over and carried as a messenger bag. But I love the graphic print, it's so eye-catching.

Finally, an affordable bag! You can't go wrong with a great nude bag. Canvas convertible bag, $68 at Urbanoutfitters.

Enjoy the visual feast, if nothing else :)

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Tuesday, December 19, 2006
Green confused
Yesterday I saw the most adorable little green dress at a British high street store called Warehouse. It was S$193, which is around US$125. I almost bought it, and then I chickened out because I thought it might look a little too much like a nightdress. And I didn't know how often I'd wear it, or how best to wear it. They only had one piece left in my size too!

They had it in this plum colour which is really cute too, but I can't find a picture of it in green. The one I wanted was deep green like this dress. I absolutely adore that colour.

Tell me, do you think I made the world's wrongest decision? And if you'd bought this dress, how would you wear it?


Name That Shoe
Katie, Katie, Katie. You married a weird guy who jumps on couches, you let him perform Scientology rituals on you and you wear sunglasses so often that my roommate thinks you must be hiding your hypnotised eyes. But you sure have cute shoes!

Does anyone know who those shoes are by?


Monday, December 18, 2006
RED shame.
Finally found my camera cable, so I can share my disappointment over the Roland Mouret for Gap Product(RED) dress. This was the only dress left in the 5th Avenue store when I went last Monday, and I shall assume that the people who snatched up all the other dresses have some sense, therefore concluding that the other dresses must have been far better (or atleast less disappointing).

The cut left much to be desired, the drape was awful, and the fabric was some sort of rough, scratchy blend. Look at the drooping hem. God only knows what they were thinking. It could've been such a cute dress. The neckline's attractive, if unoriginal, and the sleeves could've been quite sexy if they hadn't been so excessively long. This was the smallest size and it looked and felt like a sack on me.

Needless to say, I did not end up fulfilling my Roland Mouret craving.

Was anyone else lucky (and efficient) enough to pick up one of the other dresses? What did you think?

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Sunday, December 17, 2006
Winter Fashion Find Under $30

Until now, I had yet to check out Behnaz Sarafpour's line for Target--I know, I know, I'm behind on things. I had previously only seen Behnaz Sarafpour's designs in Fashion Week slideshows on, but I liked what I saw. After checking out her Target line, I am happy to say that Behnaz did not disappoint. I abslutely fell in love with so many of the gorgeous items, such as the taffeta dresses (trust me, they look better than they sound), the satin skirts, lace cardigans, tuxedo jackets, cute little clutches, off-the-shoulder tops, green satin miniskirts...pretty much everything. And all at such good prices. I cannot believe I hadn't checked it out sooner. If I'm correct, the Behnaz for Target line only lasts until the end of January, so I know I for one am going to be hurrying to my nearest Target this week to pick up a few of these items! One of my favorites was this pretty lace-covered cardigan, $24.49 at I know it looks very prim-and-proper in the picture but when dressed down with jeans and the perfect bright, bold accessories, I think it could look terrific!

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Holiday Gift Under $20: Argyle scarf @

I love bold prints. Especially in winter accessories, because my wool winter coat is a dark grey/black-ish color, so I like to brighten it up with scarves, gloves and accessories in eye-catching colors and prints. I particularly love this bright green argyle scarf from Gap. At only $16.99, it's a bargain, and perfect for the uber-prep on your gift list. Check out the website also for a whole collection of other gorgeous, wallet-friendly scarves and hats, plus some very cute and reasonably-priced sweaters.

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Being a Budget Fashionista
While Aparna likes to rhapsodize about 890-dollar Marc Jacobs dresses and such, I will admit that I am perpetually broke and thus have neither the right nor the desire to write about clothes I clearly cannot afford. These days, my bank statements are depressing, my income is dismal, and even my morning coffee is starting to become a luxury I may have to cut back on.

But if there's one thing I've learned, it's this: Style is not just for the rich.

Sure the rich have money to buy nice things, but money doesn't guarantee style. Being a broke college student temporarily does not have to stop anyone from looking and feeling great. It's all about being a budget fashionista: one who tries to get as much fashion bang for her buck as possible. Especially during the holiday season, it's easy to feel bad about oneself if your finances are in as shabby a state as mine and you're scrambling to find affordable gifts for everyone on your list while also finding cute winter clothes for every party/appearance you have to make. Look no further, because in the next one to two days I will start putting up a series of posts on holiday gifts under $20 and winter fashion finds under $30. Hopefully I'll be able to get at least one posts under each category online later tonight :-) Happy holidays everyone!


Saturday, December 16, 2006
These Boots Are Made For Walking On Snowy Streets
So I have, thus far, been rather averse to Uggs - and I know Nisha shares this sentiment - but during my last week in Chicago, when I experienced my first snowstorm, I actually began to wonder if a pair of big fat furry snow boots might not be such a bad idea after all. It's just that my leather Kenneth Coles (which I love to death) despite being gorgeous and warm and knee-high, don't provide the greatest traction when walking on slippery, slushy ground. And I'm scared to death of wearing anything with heels on ground like that so my two other pairs of heeled boots are out of the question.

Yes, I'm a frightened little soul from sunny Singapore - who is currently hating that Singapore is so damn close to the sun, because the warmth and humidity are just about unbearable! But you have to admit, college girls do a fair amount of walking around campus; we don't quite have the luxury of stepping out of the limo and prancing into the building in our Louboutin stilettos.

Anyway, my point? I am searching for a pair of good, stylish-as-hell boots which are nevertheless designed to be just right for walking through the snowy streets of Chicago (or anywhere, really, in the temperate climes of the world where you may be subject to such a scenario.)

So here are ten options for your perusal.

Boot 1: Merrell Spirit Tibet High, $130 at
Now you must get these in white, because white is chic enough to pull off an athletic-looking boot like this. I love the toggles on the side, too -- very reminiscent of the toggle coats that are so hot this year. Please don't wear these with a toggle coat though, that would be Too Much Toggle.
Boot 2: Minnetonka Front Lace Boot, $62.95 at
Take a cue from Kate Moss, who has been rocking these boots for years with little skirts and shorts. Layer a pair of wool tights underneath to keep yer pins warm and toasty.
Boot 3: Hush Puppies 'Broadway', $135 at
Stylish non-slip boots from veterans of comfort footwear design. And in case you're inclined to like fur on your boots, these have just that little bit of fur around the edges to satisfy your needs without overdoing it.
Boot 4: Palladium Valencia Tall, $73.89 at
Try these burgundy beauties for a shot of much-needed colour in your winter wardrobe.

Boot 5: Ugg Dunwich, $200 (SALE) at
I know I said Uggs were not cool, but I have to make a qualification to that statement -- I don't like the regular, 'Classic', fat Uggs. However, there are some sleeker models that manage to warm the cockles of my heart. Like these. I love the deep chocolate brown and the buckles on the sides. I would get these Uggs in an instant if they weren't so expensive.

Boot 6: Michael Kors Delta Gum Booties, $215 at
So if at all I ventured to wear something that wasn't safely, boringly flat, I would pick these. The wedge is comfortably chic and the sole appears to have ridges that will keep you from slipping and breaking your bones for fashion (although one always appreciates such true devotion, going to such an extreme is quite unnecessary - I'm sure you'll agree.)

Boot 7: Report Starla boots, $81.99 at
One more with wedge heels. I think I may actually go for a pair with wedges, because they tend to have well-designed soles and they're so chic. I love the little pom-poms on this pair. Adorable.

Boot 8: Somethin' Else by Skechers, $49.99 at
Extremely comfy and affordable, plus buckles on the side keep it fresh.

Boot 9: Dr Martens Jolie Lace-Up, $104.99 at
For the girl with heaps of attitude.

Boot 10: Trotters 'Frost' Boot, $54.95 at Nordstrom
As practical, durable and inexpensive as you can get without losing points for style.

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One more for the Lust List
Shutterbug coat, on sale at for $179.95
Extremely cute coat to pick up -- it's cotton, so you'll probably want to just stare at its eyelet prettiness until spring peeks its pretty face around the corner (unless you live in California or something), but anyway if your parents don't know what to get you for Christmas, this is a good suggestion to make!

I apologise once more for posting things that are expensively out of reach for many of us, but my rationale is that showing beautiful things doesn't hurt anyone, so long as it doesn't come at the expense of sharing ideas and items that are affordable. So I promise that a couple of helpful, budget-friendly posts are coming up! And meanwhile, hopefully there are some people out there who're fortunate enough to take advantage of the gorgeous+expensive things that I have a habit of posting. Make these babies yours and treasure them! Meanwhile, to the rest of us impoverished students: these are the things that keep me going during those long hours in the library! These are good things to aspire to.


Monday, December 11, 2006
Eternally Lust Listing
Kindly inform me, dear readers, if it bothers you that lately I've just been posting pictures of things I want which are largely very much out of our reach. I promise that once I get back to Singapore and am bored out of my skull I will drum up some exciting, useful posts. Not that TheCollegeWardrobe is only my last resort when I'm bored, but... you know what I mean, hopefully.

I want this Goldenbleu clutch very very much. Despite the fact that I'm really not a clutch kind of girl - I like to tote way too much stuff around with my for a clutch to be suitable during the day (and yes in fact you can, in my opinion, take a clutch to lunch or something; it does not have to be strictly reserved for night), and if it's the kind of nighttime occasion to which a clutch is appropriate, then I prefer not to take anything at all because that leaves my hands free (for drinks!) Plus when the drinking is over I don't need to remember what I brought with me. Trust me, this is a good practice.

So my point is, I want this clutch. Scrumptiously sleek patent leather. $300.


Sunday, December 10, 2006
It's that time of year again...from now until Wednesday evening, I will be taking a little break from TCW to make sure I don't fail out of college.

To all the rest of you taking exams these next two weeks: good luck!! And just remember, when it's over, we can reward ourselves by finally getting to our holiday shopping :-)

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I want... Black and White
Lace Embellished Blouse by Andrew Gn, at Vivre.
Am a huge fan of Andrew Gn's designs. He makes beautiful, vividly imagined, colourful clothes. Oh and he's from Singapore, so I feel a special connection to him.

I love how this blouse has a romantic, slightly ethnic feel with the lace and the shape but the stark colours are so very modern. It's also so versatile - with a pair of jeans it'd be great for coffee or shopping, with dress pants and some pretty earrings it's good for a night out. Anyone have $1200 to spare?

Alice + Olivia Deco Babydoll Dress, at Shopbop.
I really don't like the ankle boots she's wearing that adorable dress with. Once again, the babydoll shape is cute and pretty but the bold B&W deco design gives it a modern edge.

I love white coats. I've been wanting one for a long time but I'm so afraid of ruining it with a inopportunely spilled coffee or splashes of pasta sauce from lunch, that I've just about convinced myself that I can't have one. But that doesn't mean I can't covet this delicious coat by Lux, at UrbanOutfitters. It's so chic it could kill.

Fendi canvas wedges, at Net-A-Porter.
I'm going to be in Singapore in a little more than three days, so I'm getting into a fabulously summery mood! If only I could have these $510 wedges to prance around in, along with my little skirts and jacket-less ensembles.

'Tis the season for dreaming!


Saturday, December 09, 2006
Vows of Abstinence
I have two things to tell you.

1. I lovelovelove the New York Times Style section. They have the most fascinating articles.

2. Earlier this year, I took a vow of abstinence... from shopping. For approximately 4 weeks. It was long and painful and it was sort of penance for a lot of shopping that I did prior to that, plus it was sort of a sacrifice to all the gods and goddesses who could help me -- because the 4 weeks ended just before the release of my all-important A Level examination results and I was rather terrified of flunking or something, though in the end I did fine. I'm Indian, Indians do all sorts of weird penances and pilgrimages in order to believe that their wishes are more likely to come true. I took a vow of abstinence from shopping, okay?

Therefore, this article really struck a nerve. I cannot fathom how she managed to go a whole year without any clothes-shopping whatsoever. My own penance didn't really last long enough for me to start hating my clothes (or I guess the feeling of I-Have-No-Clothes happens to me regularly enough even when I've just been shopping, is it just me or does that happen to everyone?)

However, it did make me realise the pleasure of waiting for something until you know that you really must have it - which explains the spree at the end of my 4 weeks. Normally I'm too impatient to think about purchases, I just buy and often regret because in Singapore, stores don't tend to have the friendliest return policies. Most of the time they force you to exchange it for something even if there's really nothing else you want from the store, and some stores even have a no return/no exchange policy. It is quite rare that you can just return something, no questions asked. I love that American stores have lots of flexibility when it comes to accommodating the fluctuating fancies of frivolous fashionistas. Oh look at that alliteration, it breaks my heart.

So tell me, what's the longest time you've been without shopping?


Chicago's Fashion Czar
Just read a rather exciting article about the future of Chicago's fashion scene - from the New York Times.

"In June, the mayor appointed a fashion czar — or, more precisely, a director of fashion arts and events — to upgrade his city’s sartorial sensibility. Daley’s choice for the position, a former corporate lawyer and fashion-marketing graduate named Melissa Turner, will not function as the apparel police; there will be no edicts against too-long hemlines or tacky ties. Rather, with the help of a 20-member advisory council, Turner will help nurture the design industry to the point at which it can potentially compete with the thriving design scenes in New York and Los Angeles."

Frankly, the Midwest has its fair share of people who are just BEGGING to be arrested by the fashion police, but even just a person whose job is to bring dynamism and flair to the fashion industry in Chicago, is a very exciting development indeed!

"For those questioning the value of a fashion czar, Mayor Daley can point to a position the city created a decade ago: culinary director. Since that time, Chicago has become known as a foodie paradise."

So true! Melissa Turner oversaw Fashion Focus Chicago this fall, but I am embarrassed to say I don't know if Chicago regularly has a week of runway shows by established designers. Whatever it is, I can't wait for the day when designers will be falling all over themselves to show in Chicago. (A girl can dream. Or she can head to New York.)


Friday, December 08, 2006
Dear College Wardrobe...
Question: "So I have a question I know you all can answer.I'm from Florida. I am a flip flop connoisseur. I own 30 pairs and wear nothing else unless I absolutely have too. But I really need something else in my shoe wardrobe!! Something for winter and something a flip flop girl would be comfortable in (but not uggs) I've been looking at boots, but my calves are usually too big to fit in them (its the running, its good for your heart, bad for making your calves larger than boots) and the fact they're high-heeled which isn't usually comfortable. Do you have any other ideas? I'm also going to Paris in March where it's in the 40's, so Im looking for something fashionable and comfy to wear around walking everywhere.Thanks for anything you can find! I love TCW!"

Dear reader: You've come to the right place! I'm not much of a runner myself (not motivated enough...props to you for being healthy!) but I feel your pain about finding shoes that are both comfortable and fashionable, something that is very important to all of us here at TCW (and by all of us, I mean Aparna and I).

Although it may seem like the only options for a college girl as far as boots are Uggs and heels, there are plenty of other options out there (and thank GOD. I'm sick of Uggs. My friend commented the other day that she wanted to buy a pair and I told her I sincerely hope she never jumps on that bandwagon...). Here's some things you can look for in boots:

  • Wedge boots. Personally, I think wedge-heeled boots look even cuter than normal high-heeled boots, and they're a bit more comfortable with the solid heel and everything. I'm in love with these wedge boots. And because they're from Dr. Scholl's, you know they're guaranteed to keep your feet comfy.
  • Flat boots. If the wedge heel is still too much for you, you're in luck, because since last winter, flat boots have been a hit, too. While flat boots may not always appear to be the most fashionable of choices, there are plenty of cute ones if you know where to look. Try and for starters--both have plenty of options at college-friendly prices. Even Old Navy has a couple cute flat boot options.
  • Stretchy boots. These are extremely helpful for those with toned calves, because they stretch to fit your leg and don't constrain you to a certain amount of space. In fact, has a whole section devoted to stretch/wide calf boots, which I highly recommend to anyone in need of stretch boots--there's a very bountiful selection there :-)

STAY AWAY FROM FURRY STUFF. It's just a cheap Ugg imitation, and especially if you plan on wearing these in Paris, anything fur-lined will just scream "american fashion disaster." Or rather, "une americaine qui n'est pas en mode." Or "tres depuis trois ans" (so three years ago). Or whatever. You know, my french is really, really rusty since I got to college because I have no one to speak it with anymore! I'm jealous that you're going to Paris, I'd love an opportunity like that! Bonne vacances!

*Got a question of your own? send it in and me or aparna will do our best to answer it :-)

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Thursday, December 07, 2006
How to wear a boyfriend sweater
One of our readers pointed out that boyfriend sweaters look gorgeous on VS models, but they're difficult for real girls to wear. This is true. However, like most things, there's a right and wrong way to wear a boyfriend sweater.

Don't wear it with baggy old jeans. You want to look sexy, like you just tossed that ol' thing on - and damn right it's a killer colour which sets off your eyes just so. We could have a whole long discussion here about why it's called a boyfriend sweater (and I don't know the right answer) but I'm pretty sure that looking like your boyfriend is not the objective.

Also, don't wear a sweater that's both oversized and chunky. That would be a little too retro in a rather unflattering way. Go for a light weave that accentuates your curves rather than amplifies/muffles them.


Wear it with sexy jeans. Especially when you're running around campus, this is comfy and chic. I have hips and am therefore afraid of skinnies, but skinnies + boyfriend sweater + ballet flats/ankle boots + large tote = cuteness! Try these NFY skinnies with these flats by Pedro Garcia. I'm not normally into skulls on my clothes, but I am quite enchanted by the cute little skull on those adorable flats! Oops, I am afraid to admit they're $450, so try these cute red ones by Bandolino for a much friendlier $65.

Alternatively, trouser jeans like these Seven For All Mankind Farrah Trouser Jeans would be perfect. Whatever it is that you pick, make sure they're well-tailored to set off the casualness of the sweater.

Wear it over a slip dress or a sweet little strapless dress.

Try it cinched at the waist with a thick leather belt to give it more definition.

You could also wear a boyfriend sweater with an ultra feminine vintage-style full knee-length skirt.

Don't forget to accessorise! Scarves, jewellery, heels.

Go for it!