November 30, 2011

Relaxed Casual Look

Photo Credit: via tumblr

There's nothing better than a slouchy knit over a well worn tee, skinny black pants, leopard scarf and crossbody bag to create a relaxed, laid back look.

If you already own a leopard scarf, throw it on top of your coat or knit the next time you walk out the door.

November 29, 2011

An Interview with Jennifer Chun

Jennifer Chun made her New York Fashion Week debut with her Spring 2012 collection.

Her designs are beautifully tailored, and strike the just the right balance of polished and effortless.

Born in South Korea and raised in Ohio, Jennifer Chun attended Pratt Institute and then worked for Michael Kors, Derek Lam, and Brian Reyes before launching her own line in 2009.

Jennifer Chun talks about her designs, the inspiration behind her spring collection, and what it's really like to work for some of the top American fashion houses.

YS: How would you describe your designs?

Jennifer Chun: I would describe it as casual with an element of polish. I like a structured piece mixed with feminine elements and utilitarian details.

YS: What’s the best thing about designing for your own label?

Jennifer Chun: The best thing about designing my own line is seeing your concept develop and then the positive reaction you receive from it.

YS: What was on your mind while designing the spring collection? Any concepts or themes uniting the collection?

Jennifer Chun: The inspiration came from the iconic Yves Saint Laurent, Betty Catroux and Loulou de la Falaise photo at the opening of the Rive Gauche store in London in 1969. The photo shows a ready-to-wear, casual element to the safari/utilitarian concept that I relate to.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Jennifer Chun

YS: Do you wear the clothes that you design? How do you like to style/wear the pieces you’ve designed?

Jennifer Chun: I do wear some pieces. I never leave without an outerwear piece and its always, a blazer, jacket or vest. I love layering in a way so it can make a dress or top a little casual and structured.

YS: What’s been the biggest lesson you’ve learned since starting your own line?

Jennifer Chun: The biggest lesson I have learned since starting my own line is to stay true to my vision and not to compromise quality or my aesthetic.

YS: Before launching your namesake label, you worked for Michael Kors, Derek Lam and Brian Reyes. How did your experiences at these design houses shape who you are as a designer?

Jennifer Chun: Michael Kors knows who he is as a brand and who his client is which is important to understand. Derek Lam is a great mentor and I learned from him how important experience balanced with creativity can really help you in this industry.

While I was working with Brian Reyes it showed me how much work is involved in starting your own line. All of this has made me feel incredibly fortunate!

YS: You made your New York Fashion Week debut at the Spring/Summer 2012 Gen Art’s Fresh Faces in Fashion runway show. Gen Art highlights emerging designers; Gen Art had a hand in the success of Zac Posen, Rodarte and Phillip Lim. How did you feel when you showed your collection for the first time at NYFW? And, what was it like to be selected as a talented emerging designer by Gen Art?

Jennifer Chun: Gen Art contacted me and gave me a great opportunity to present during fashion week. We showed at the Manhattan Center. I remember reading about Gen Art as a student at Pratt and hoping that I would be able to participate after I graduated. This was really exciting for me, and such an honor to be a part of it!

YS: You’re a New York-based designer. Do you draw inspiration from New York? From your travels?

Jennifer Chun: Living in New York is one of the best places to live as a designer, but for me it is about being inspired by everything around me, and incorporating it into my aesthetic. Traveling really is the most inspirational and exciting. It gives you this new perspective on lifestyle, colors, etc but again it’s about being able to relate it to my line.

YS: There’s a strong menswear influence apparent in your looks, yet your designs are distinctly feminine at the same time. How do strike that balance between masculinity and femininity in your designs?

Jennifer Chun: I was influenced by wearing my father’s clothing and mixing it with my mothers growing up. This meant shrinking my father’s sweaters or shirts and wearing it with my mother’s skirts or jackets. I think its important for me not to be too literal and being a female designer there will be a natural feminine approach to my designs. This balance is very important to me when I design a line. You described my look perfectly!

YS: Who do you see wearing your clothes?

Jennifer Chun: The woman I design for is smart and intuitive and loves to mix and match so that she’s not too put together. She loves to remain casual but never underdressed. I think Keira Knightley or Natalia Vodianova are beautiful without being too overdone.

YS: What’s next for your label?

Jennifer Chun: I am now working on Fall 2012!

November 28, 2011

Trend Report: Southwestern-inspired

Inspired by a road trip to Santa Fe, Proenza Schouler designers Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough designed a critically acclaimed fall collection (see photo at left) complete with digitized Southwestern prints, casual knits, and cool dresses.

Get a piece from the designer's notable fall collection with this Proenza Schouler mini skirt.

Read on for ideas on how you can get a similar look, including two fashionable picks under $50 pictured below!! Southwestern-inspired pieces also make fantastic gifts for the girl who has everything!

Try this trend by incorporating a fun, playful Southwestern print tote into your off-duty look. I really like L.A.M.B. Cheyenne Tote. The pink, yellow and orange colors in the print seem to be inspired by nature - perhaps reminiscent of a pretty sunset.

Buy a Southwestern bag, scarf or piece of jewelry to see if you like the look (think about taking advantage of all the Cyber Monday deals today).

Head in a more avant-garde direction, by adding an edgy glam cuff to your jewelry collection - check out this Pamela Love Southwestern Cuff.

This cuff will work with just about every fall or winter outfit, and it's an unexpected way to incorporate the Southwestern-inspired look.

As the temperatures continue to drop, curl up in a cozy Southwestern knit - like this Free People Arizona Blanket Wrap (pictured above). And, it's under $50!!!

Photo Credit: Proenza Schouler F/W 2011 Collection via; via Free People; via ASOS

Attend your Holiday parties wearing a dress in a sophisticated, unique Southwestern-inspired print - like this Vero Moda Navajo Pattern Long Sleeve Dress (pictured above). At under $50, it's hard to say no to this trendy, cool dress! Add some black opaque tights to make it more weather appropriate & you'll be all set in this unexpected, cool look.

November 25, 2011

Gorgeous Interiors: Pops of Pink

Pops of pink here and there make a room instantly more feminine and playful.

Some ideas: include a pink chair in your living space; add fuschia roses even in the middle of the Holiday season for a sweet touch; or gift someone a hot pink picture frame with a special photo inside! The possibilities are endless - make your space a little prettier with pink.

Photo Credits: Rue Magazine, House of Fifty D Home via Marcus Design

November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Photo Credit: via elegant abode

Happy Thanksgiving! I'm thankful for God's provision for my life, my family and friends.

I hope each and every one of you are having a fabulous day! Enjoy Turkey Day!!

What are you thankful for this year?

November 23, 2011

Trend Report: Floral Print Shirtdress

Photo Credit: via vanessajackmanblog

Style-savvy Julia Sarr-Jamois wears a sophisticated floral print shirtdress during Paris Fashion Week. Julia Sarr-Jarmois was recently named "it girl" by American Vogue.

The floral print works well for fall and even winter- just add layers as needed. Florals are no longer limited to spring!

Get the look with Suno's Drop Neck Floral Print Shirt Dress. The dress is easy and effortless with a hint of a soft 1970's vibe. I'm picturing it worn with black opaque tights, black suede booties, and a charcoal gray coat.

November 22, 2011

Get the Look: Quirky Cool Collar

Photo Credit: via Tom and Lorenzo

Actress Felicity Jones gives off a retro cool vibe in this Spring 2012 Proenza Schouler look. I am particularly fond of the modern, quirky collar.

Peter Pan collars may be getting all the attention, but a pointed collar buttoned all the way is surprisingly chic!

Get the look for around $100 by snatching up an on trend dress with a statement-making collar like the one pictured below or buy a shirt collar as an accessory and put it on top of your basic tees to give your outfit added personality!

Get the look for around $100 in this cream ASOS dress with black leather collar. The midi length (meaning the dress' hem ends around mid-calf) of the dress is fresh, cool and on trend.
Detachable Collar?

Why, yes! What a good idea.

Wear a sequined shirt collar when you feel like making your outfit a little more rad. This sparkly ASOS Gold Sequin Collar (pictured above) will turn your outfit from ho-hum to spectacular.

Want an edgier look? Add a fun, edgy cool collar over a simple crew neck sweater - like this yellow leather Wonderment Collar. The mini silver studs are edgy, fun and quirky cool.

November 21, 2011

YS Gift Guide: For the Fashionista

Magda Sayeg Sunglasses, $130 - available at Sunglass Hut

Hot Pink Zigzag Lolie Envelope Clutch, $90 - available at Bagatelles & Co.

Set of 3 Cane Glasses, $50 - available at Chic Shop

Edie Purse in Italian Calf Hair, $448 - available at J. Crew

Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty Hardcover Book, $27 - available at Amazon

Painted Amaryllis Measuring Cups, $38 at Anthropologie

November 18, 2011

Look for Less: Mirrored Sideboard Table

Photo Credit: room via decorpad; tray via

Recently, I found this gorgeous room. I love finding luxe design in small living spaces. I have a small apartment so I’m always looking for design inspiration. This room achieves its open and airy feel through a light color palette.

My favorite part of this room is the mirrored sideboard table. As someone who is currently shopping for a sofa table/sideboard table, this piece caught my eye immediately. I love the white color as well as the mirrored design on the front. Not only gorgeous, this table is also functional. Function is very important in small spaces. Sideboard tables are also very versatile. Don’t hesitate to use them in your entryway to welcome guests, as a buffet table in your dining room to store dishes or cookbooks, or as a chic entertainment center to hide unsightly cords and wires.

I am personally a fan of the white version in the picture but found mirrored tables in other finishes that are just as beautiful. West Elm’s Foxed Mirror Buffet is truly a showstopper. It’s a bit of a splurge but worth it for this investment piece. Sear’s Powell Console offers a more affordable option for less than $200.

The curved pattern (identical to the one pictured) and dark brown finish would make it a great addition to any home. If you love the pairing of mirror paneling and white lacquer, and are not in need of storage, Wayfair’s Crestview Mirrored Console Table is a fabulous choice.

Once you purchase a sideboard, your design options are endless. You can go the traditional route and add a couple of lamps, flowers, and a tray to showcase sentimental pieces. A snakeskin tray (pictured on right) or a lacquered tray are both chic options that are on trend and compliment the tables perfectly.

Not a fan of traditional design? Go contemporary with all white accessories. ZGallerie has a great selection that would add depth to the white lacquer or pop against the dark wood. Lastly, you could leave the table bare and use it to highlight your favorite piece of artwork similar to the room above. The possibilities are endless.

Get more of Marche's tips on interior design, fashion and more at her fabulous blog, EyeCandy. And, remember to look for her interior design column here on Young Sophisticates!