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emerson fry for less

emerson fry for less

Emerson Fry is a line that was started (as Emerson Made) in 2009. In the beginning, the line was small and Emerson herself was the model as well as designer. This image has been one of my favorite style inspirations since I saw it (I believe this is the "mod" dress from
Spring 2011).

emerson fry mod dress

As the line has grown, she's added more and more classic, simple, and beautiful garments. They all seem as though they'll never go out of style. Currently, I like the Drawstring Raglan Dress and the Italian Motoretta Dress (below).

Another look I love, and one that is super popular around the interwebs is the Caftan Dress (below, left).

I was looking at it recently when I realized that I had something extremely similar bookmarked on Amazon (above, right). Same cut, made in the same country (India). I wouldn't hesitate to invest in one of Emerson Fry's chic dresses, but for this guy, I think I'll pay $25 instead of $238.

This is more boho than my usual style, but I feel like I lean a little more boho in the summer - it's hard to pull off in the snow, amiright? Does your style change from season to season?

lucky guide to mastering any style: mod

 dress - uniqlo, $40 ;  bag - pucci,  $you-don't-want-to-know;  scarf - vintage pucci , price unknown;  shoes - asos , $66.50

dress - uniqlo, $40; bag - pucci, $you-don't-want-to-know; scarf - vintage pucci, price unknown; shoes - asos, $66.50

When I think of mod, I think of Pucci scarves, a-line minidresses, graphic prints, lots of black and white, and of course Twiggy, the iconic model of the era. Grace Coddington, the famous fashion editor, was also a model during the London "youth-quake", which she wrote about in her memoir, Grace. I'd have to double-check, but I remember her saying in the book that she came up with the spiky spider eyelash look seen here on Twiggy.

photo by ronald traeger

photo by ronald traeger

Most of these elements translate seamlessly to today's fashion, and in fact, mod seems to be a "trend" every other year. This year is one of those years, and you can find lots of shift dresses and low chunky heels in stores. 

What do you think? Is mod your style?

how do you find your personal style?

Before you can clean out your closet or buy new things, you need to have a vision for how you want to look.  Like an organization devising a mission statement, it serves as a measuring stick for future decisions. Whether or not you should keep, buy, or wear things gets measured against your vision and it it doesn't fit into the image, you don't keep/buy/wear it.  This doesn't mean that you always have to stick with one vision, it just means that it'll be easier to make purchases and choose outfits that work with everything else you have.  

One of my "inspiration" binders from about five years ago. Yes, I am a nerd.

One of my "inspiration" binders from about five years ago. Yes, I am a nerd.

So, how do you know what your personal style is? One of the easiest ways is to sift through lots of images and pull out the ones that really speak to you. In the past, I've always done this with magazines. Anytime I saw a look or an item that I loved, I would fold down the corner of the page to mark it, and then later on, before recycling or giving away the magazines, I would tear out the page and put it in a folder. Then, when I was stumped about what to wear, I'd go to the folder and pull out something that I could emulate, whether it was a look from head to toe or just a mood.


When most of my fashion reading moved to the internet and blogs, I'd save photos to inspiration folders on my desktop. Now we have it even easier with Pinterest! It's so easy to pin any image that resonates. When you look at your page of pins, you can pull out common themes. For example, for me, there are lots of images of black with large chunky brass necklaces, stripes, ethnic prints, trench coats, animal prints, etc.  If you're very disciplined about sticking to this one vision, you'll have an easy time making outfits from what's in your closet because all of the pieces should go with each other. 

Another way to discover your style "type" is by reading books about fashion and style. There are many great books out there, but my personal favorite is the Lucky Guide to Mastering Any Style. In it, ten different style categories are outlined, and it's clearly conveyed that most people are a combination of several types. The ten categories are: Euro Chic, California Casual, Rock and Roll, Posh Eclectic, Mod, American Classic, Bombshell, Bohemian, Arty Slick, and Gamine. My style is mostly Gamine and Euro Chic with a bit of Bohemian thrown in. When I asked my husband to leaf through the book and pick out the three styles he thought I was, those were the three he chose as well, a sign that I'm doing a pretty good job sticking to a cohesive look. 

lucky guide image.jpg

What exactly does each style look like? So glad you asked! For the next several weeks, I'm going to do my best to show you. First up, in honor of the return of Mad Men, we'll look at Mod.

To be continued...

UPDATE: here are posts for the following styles: 

Arty Slick

Posh Eclectic 



American Classic 


Submitted to IFB Project #89