About Amber

Amber has been obsessed with fashion since she was nine years old--when she got a pair of white pointy boots with silver studs and beaded tassels. She's been collecting shoes (and bags and hats and jeans...) ever since. Now she's a writer and a mom, and she often takes her baby shopping with her, rocking out to Raffi songs along the way.

Look of the Week: Black & Brown

Yeah, I know… It’s springtime and one of the biggest color trends right now is bright pastels. But you can’t dress like an Easter egg every day. Let’s talk about understated colors, classic combos, the sophisticated duo that is my go-to when I want to look en pointe without trying too hard: black & brown.

Now let’s talk about how Jennifer of Seeking Style (and Crossroads Style Council member) is killing it in this black/red ensemble with brown accents. Crossroads recently invited Jennifer to join part of our marketing team at Lucky FABB 2014, and she opted for a fresh twist on the cool girl look–all black with a punch of red plaid, made fresh by a brown slouchy bag and round tortoise shell sunglasses.

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Here are some more great examples of how to get that laid back/sophisticated look with black and brown:

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Photo credits: Fab Sugar, Just the Design, Fashion Diva Design, The Front Row View, The Fashionables, Little Liffner, Elle, Fits of Fashion

 

Our Top 3 Picks from Our Online Shop

It’s finally sandal weather, and we feel like celebrating… by shopping. The buyers for our Crossroads Online Shop have been killing it with festival-ready trends and boutique brand pieces, so we’re starting our shopping frenzy there. Here are our Top 3 picks from our Online Shop.

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Hello, sundress. We need you in our closets, please. Everything about this dress–from its gorgeous print and colors to its keyhole opening on the back–is so amazing. The only other things you need to make this dress the centerpiece of your ensemble are metallic sandals, bangles and a warm summer night.

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Our personal jewelry collection has been looking pretty tired lately. So we just had to add this shiny, colorful, geometrical necklace to our list. It’s so unique, and we’ve already visualized each of the outfits we’ll be wearing it with. This necklace will instantly add sass and style to anything you wear.

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Okay, so the weather may be warming up, but that doesn’t mean we don’t want to wear something comfy and cozy every once in a while. That’s where this cropped hi-lo top comes into play. Again, it’s all about imagining what you could wear this with, and we’re all about layering it over dresses, pairing it with high-waisted pencil skirts and taking comfy to the next level by wearing it with skinny sweats (coffee run, anyone?).

Any favorite pieces that we missed? Comment below!

 

 

Interview: Lavenda of Lavenda’s Closet

These days Lavenda of Lavenda’s Closet is a busy lady. Besides blogging, she’s a fashion photographer, an actress, a model and a mom. And somehow she manages to do it all and look gorgeous and have a keen sense of style. Oh, and did I mention that she’s super sweet and genuine?

Here’s what she had to say about style on a budget, fashion predictions and the contents of her purse(s).

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What’s your favorite album?

I’m pretty obsessed with Bank’s album London.

Somehow you’ve managed to be right on trend with each of your outfits while maintaining a look that’s your own. What’s your secret?

My secret is always being on a budget. I think that I have to challenge myself and be a little more creative when I can’t just go out and buy every shape and color that hits the top-trend list.

I love how you mix high and low in terms of brands, effortlessly mixing H&M with higher-end names like Chanel. Who are your favorite designers and shops (high- and low-end)?

I shop Forever21 and Zara for trendier pieces because of their price points. H&M and local shops like Mojave and Sloan Boutique keep me updated as well. As for high-end designers, I love Chloe, Chanel, Marc Jacobs and Alexandar Wang. I also like BCBG and Rag and Bone for mid-range staples.

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How would you describe your style?

Classic Chic with an Urban Edge.

When did you first start getting into fashion? Do you remember the first piece of clothing/accessory that you ever really loved?

I loved this blue and black leopard tunic skirt my mother owned. It was a knit material, and I wore it as a dress playing dress up. I couldn’t wait to be old enough to wear things like that myself.

What’s in your purse right now?

Oh, shoot. This is embarrassing. Which purse? My purse with my wallet inside of it carries about six lipsticks from Clinique, Mac and Sephora. Also, a nail file, passport, Cabana match book and a zinc spray bottle.

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Who’s your biggest style inspiration?

Currently, I don’t have just one. I have a list of bloggers that I follow on Instagram, and I’m obsessed with The Blonde Salad because of how quickly she blew up as a fashion blogger. She has her own shoe line, and that’s my dream–to someday have my own handbag or shoe line. I also follow Monica Rose, who is a wardrobe stylist. I love her feed with photos of her daughters as well as all the celebrities she styles for.

You mention on your blog that you’ve got Southern roots, and now you’re in Portland, Oregon. Can you tell us a little about how you got from A to B? How have these two regions influenced your sense of style?

That’s a good question… I have this habit of never wearing a coat when I’m supposed to. And I think that comes from my childhood spent in Texas. I moved here just before high school and lived in a small, rural town. I pushed the envelope with trends back then, but it was all Goodwill bins and that sort of thing. Living in the Northwest allows me to a bit more lax about my daily fashion choices. It’s a love/hate thing.

When I lived in Spain for a term in college, I remember being in awe of how women dressed every day just to go to the grocery store or a cafe two blocks from their house. By the end of the term, I was a little exhausted and may have wished for a sweats trip to the market store (haha). However, this influenced my perspective on presentation and personal pride, so that when I returned home, I felt challenged to continue dressing up every day.

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Where are some of your favorite places to go in Portland?

Oh, the list could be sooo long! Let’s see. I love Petite Province, St Honore and Love Joy Bakers for lunch. Mirakutei, Screen Door, Departure or Fire on the Mountain for dinner. Love the Doug Fir for concerts, Chopsticks or Alibi for Karaoke and White Owl for drinks, amongst others.

Have you ever shopped in one of our Portland stores? What’s your favorite find?

I shopped the 23rd Ave location recently and scored the most AMAZING neoprene skirt by Nasty Gal. I have been in love with the neoprene trend but hadn’t found a wow-piece that fit perfectly until this skirt. I also found some sweet Adidas tennies that I’ve already worn with hot pink cords and shorts.

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Necklace and skirt both scored at Crossroads.

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What can you not stop wearing lately?

Black and white. Also, probably my Elly Clay trigger booties. They add about five to six inches to my petite frame, plus the hardware is sick.

What’s your favorite accessory?

I’m a necklace person more than earrings or even rings… I rotate between my Marc Jacobs mixed metals necklace and a show-piece white rock necklace by Tied Up and Tousled.

As the weather warms up, what are you looking forward to wearing?

Slinky, yummy sundresses; minis and high-waisted shorts with wedges and sandals–less clothes, overall. Can’t wait!

Thinking ahead to fall 2014, what runway look are you looking forward to wearing?

Pastels. I just had my nails done in the Pantone color of the year (Radiant Orchid) and I’m excited to layer all the light cotton whites, pale pinks, lavender and blues.

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Do you have any favorite blogs you’d like to recommend to our readers?

Outfit of the Day Magazine blog is terrific. They’re easy to follow on instagram or twitter as well. Stylkolik is killing it these days as well.

What do you do when you’re not blogging?

I’m a fashion photographer by day and a superhero mama by night. For reals, I have a four-year-old muffin who has her own hashtag–”Ella’s Closet”–if you’d like to check her out. I’m also a represented actress and model with Option Model and Media.

Sum up your mantra on life in one sentence.

Friends and family first; the rest is just icing.

Thank you for your time, Lavenda!

 

All photos courtesy of Lavenda’s Closet (photographer Linzy Slusher).

 

Look of the Week: Rompers

Like tulips and daffodils, rompers keep faithfully popping up each spring, and the never ending variety of styles keeps this trend fresh every year. Floral silk or casual chambray, long-sleeved or sleeveless–if you can imagine it, it’s probably out there.

Mara of M Loves M, and one of our Crossroads Style Council members, shows us how to dress up a romper for date night:

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Not only do I adore the royal blue color, but the billowing long-sleeves make this romper all grown up. Plus, Mara’s accessories are just right: The gold tassel necklace echoes the tasseled tie at the waist, and her Tory Burch bag is a beautiful piece of eye candy.

As these other street style shots show, rompers are just about the easiest way to look chic.

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Photo credits: M Loves MLove Joo Kim, Olivia Noel, Life, Love & the Pursuit of Shoes, The Daleigh, Le 21-eme, Fashables, Murphy’s Law, Leather and Lattes

Look of the Week: Skinny Overalls

Just the other day, I was pining for denim shortalls (I still am), but Bethany of Snakes Nest and one of our super chic Crossroads Style Council members has me rethinking overalls.

These aren’t the oversized type made popular in the ’90s by timeless musical acts such as Destiny’s Child and Marky Mark: These skinny-cut dungarees are a fresh take on an old style. And the rest of Bethany’s outfit… killing it.

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Dress ‘em up or keep ‘em casual–these ladies nailed the look.

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Photo credits: Snake’s Nest, Made Out of Real ThingsFab Sugar, Style Bistro, Ain’t No Mom Jeans, Viva Luxury, Vogue, Love Style Transform,  Fashionplate

10 Must-Have Items for Spring

Who doesn’t like updating their wardrobe with a few choice pieces each season? But this spring the trends are especially cute, and I can’t wait to go shopping… Here’s my list of 10 must-have items for spring:

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1.  Quirky Prints… Hello, Pink Zebras! Or would you prefer a watermelon print shirtdress? Fun prints are popping up on everything, and I’m totally on board.  BTW- have you seen our animal print kimono?

2.  Round Sunglasses… This is such an easy way to change up your look if wearing sunnies is part of your everyday outfit. And this translucent pair screams springtime.

3.  Espadrilles… I’m always on the hunt for a cute, comfy pair of flats, and espadrilles fit the bill. Plus, look at the adorable print on this pair! This will instantly make every outfit more fun.

4.  Denim Shortalls… In my sartorial daydreams, I’m wearing these with a crop top and super cute sandals. So much more chic than just plain ol’ denim shorts.

5.  Open-Weave Sweater… This barely-there sweater is the answer to spring’s fickle temps. There are endless ways to layer pieces underneath, and it will be perfect over a bikini top in the summer.  And we have the perfect one in our online shop!

6.  Tan Leather Platform Sandals… One of my favorite trends right now, the clean, modernist lines showing up on sandals is only made better by adding a platform chunky heel. I will wear these with everything.

7.  Palm Leaf Print Shorts… Your typical shorts options include short shorts, bermudas and boyfriend shorts. But this pair offers a fun and flattering alternative: say yes to a soft, feminine cut and a fun print.

8.  Reconstructed Denim Skirt… Straight from the ’90s, I can’t get enough of this denim skirt that may have been made from a pair of old jeans. I could live in this skirt forever.

9. Pastel Multi-Color Handbag… There are pretty watercolor pastels, and then there are late ’80s LA Gear pastels–surprisingly bold hues for being so soft. Nothing says spring like pastel candy-colored accessories.

10.  Lace Bomber… Um, yes, please? It’s a white lace bomber… What more needs to be said besides get in my closet.

 

10 Things to Wear Not Just on St. Paddy’s Day

If you’re reading this, congratulations–you’ve survived another St. Patrick’s Day weekend. Time to stow away your green glitter shamrock antennas, forget about your iffy ties to Ireland and go back to work/school.

But… since today’s actually St. Paddy’s Day, there’s nothing wrong with wearing something green to avoid potential pinchings. Before you hit up a dollar store for some terribly tacky leprechaun socks that you’ll never wear again, take a look at my list of 10 things to wear on St. Paddy’s that you’ll actually want to wear again.

1.  Kelly Green Handbag

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While any shade of green will technically meet the you-can’t-pinch-me criterion, folks think of this springtimey shade when they think of St. Patrick’s Day.

2.  Cropped Green Fur Coat

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This is a phenomenal fur coat. The 3/4 length sleeves and grey trim make it. And I love the gloves.

3. Green Printed Scarf

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A scarf is the perfect compromise for those of you who don’t want to fully commit to wearing green. I love this Hermes one because it has a cute print and lots of color.

4. Green Dress

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Besides the fact that this woman is just gorgeous in this dress, her champagne-colored accessories are unexpected and spot on.

5.  Emerald Green Full Midi Skirt

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This is such a pretty shade of green, and the juxtaposition of the ladylike midi skirt with the black leather moto jacket is awesome.

6. Olive Printed Trousers

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I think I may be experiencing a chicness overload. As if the trousers weren’t amazing all by themselves, the combo of yellow coat, t-shirt and bright multicolored strappy heels has sent me right over the edge. I am in love with this outfit.

7.  Green & Navy Sweater

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Green and navy is such an understated color combo. This sweater could be worn in so many different ways–including white shorts and sandals.

8.  Mint Sweatshirt

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Mint may not be the traditional hue of St. Paddy’s Day, but for argument’s sake let’s just agree that it’s in the green family. And besides, it’s so cute with that bright blue skirt and those nude heels.

9.  Kelly Green Heels

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Shoes are such a great way to inject a little pow into your outfits. Take these kelly green heels, for instance: you’re definitely safe for St. Paddy’s, and you can wear them on any other day too.

10.  Men’s Olive Green Drawstring Pants

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These olive green drawstring pants make the perfect weekend gear–casual, comfy and nice looking. Plus, they’re available at our online shop, so you can snag a pair of your very own right this minute.

Have a Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Kiss me, I’m Irish… today anyway. 

 

Photo credits: The Fashion SpotStyle Logistics, Marie Claire, Chic, Free Fashion Designs, Fashion Bomb Daily,  Sortrashion, The Best Fashion Blog, IZ Andrew, ShopCrossroads

 

What the Fashion: Sneakers, with Everything

Have you noticed lately that sneakers have been upgraded from casual to dressy? Street style bloggers are gushing over this trend, and it seems like Fashion Week goers have begun playing Tacky Fashion Russian Roulette–with all of them losing in my eyes.

As someone who owns more pairs of sneakers than heels, I want to be all over this trend. But all I can say is, No… Non, nyet, nein. There’s a time and an outfit for everything, but I think sneakers just look ridiculous with dressy outfits.   But you tell me: should sneakers with everything be embraced? 

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I blame you, Chanel.

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But last time we did this it looked so good… No, it didn’t.

 

Photo credits: We Live in Tribeca, Vanessa Jackman, Haute Talk, Portraits of Elegance, Be Myself, Independent Skies, Screen Shots

Look of the Week: Baby Doll Dresses

Trends reappear every ten years or so, and sometimes–just sometimes–it’s a good thing. This is the case with baby doll dresses. I didn’t realize I’d been missing this swingy, flirty, comfy wonder dress until I saw Rachel of Jag Lever (and Crossroads Style Council member) wearing one on her blog.

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The buttons and oversized ruffle are perfection… never mind her insanely cute heart-print hose and cutout shoes. With all the fun prints on baby dolls out there right now–and all the possible combinations with different styles of shoes–don’t you think it’s time you welcomed this old friend back into your heart/closet?

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Photo credits: Jag Lever, Fab Sugar, Motel Rocks, The Dolls Factory, Really Ree, Paunnet, LuckyMag

What to Wear to a Pool Party

It’s almost that time again: pool party season. Spring Break is right around the corner, and this is the year that you won’t be arriving at a pool party in boring shorts and flip flops… promise. Here’s a guide to help you up the fabulous ante no matter what type of pool party you’re going to–while staying completely practical.

1. Nautical Prep

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You can’t go wrong with navy striped shorts and a white button-up. Throw in a navy bandeau bikini top and coral gladiator sandals, and you’ll not only look polished and put together, but you’ll also be comfortable whether you’re poolside or taking a dip. For a finishing touch, add a tote large enough to handle the necessities–towel, trashy magazine, sunscreen–and a hat to shade your head.

2. Beverly Hills Boho

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This look is perfect for the gal who prefers to lounge by the pool but doesn’t want to go swimming. The lace dress has beautiful scalloped hems and is loose enough to keep you cool, and the platform wedge espadrilles are guaranteed to make your legs look a mile long. I love the bright pop of color that the day-glo stripe on the tote gives the whole outfit, and the round leopard-print sunglasses–I want them for my very own.

3. Vegas

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Vegas pool parties are the stuff of legend, but is strutting around in a bikini and stilettos not your thing? Mine neither. So how do you stay cool when it’s 5 million degrees outside? How about some easy breezy palazzo pants paired with platform wedges. Add some classic cat eyes and this adorable Kate Spade wristlet, and now you’re ready to (pool) party.

4. Sweetness

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“Pool Party” doesn’t have to mean bright colors and garish prints. Try a more feminine look with a floral crop top, a high-waisted chambray skirt and an oversized floppy straw hat. The t-strap sandals add to the sweet vibe, while the navy and tan chevron tote give a subtle punch to an otherwise pastel outfit. Burn easily? Carry a parasol, of course.

Is there a type of pool party that I left out? Let me know!  And have you seen the new Spring Break collection in the Crossroads Online Shop?