Lex and the City

T-shirt, skirt and bracelets: J. Crew | Eyewear: Aldo | Shoes: Steve Madden

This outfit is…well, it’s probably the one that best captures my love of color, pattern, sparkle, leopard print, comfort, vintage and whimsy all in one look. Those are all elements that make up my approach to getting dressed every day no matter what’s on my agenda, although I rarely wear all these elements at once. Most days, my outfits are a reflection of my personality.

This look is also a take on Carrie Bradshaw, the lovelorn writer-heroine of Sex and the City. Although Carrie and I differ in many ways, we essentially are people who are trying to tell stories and dress fabulously while living and loving fearlessly.

Fear. It’s one of the F-words that has shaken my world this year…along with another F-word: failure. At many turns I’ve felt deeply afraid, or as though no matter how hard I work or how hard I try, I’m failing someone or something, somewhere. What has helped me to readjust my thinking is learning to practice radical FAITH and FORGIVENESS to help me keep moving FORWARD. And those are the only F-words that count.

I loved posing for this shoot with Becca Bell of Birmingham’s 2b Photography. Talk about fearless: she runs a thriving creative business in addition to being a wife and mom. (Check out her work here.) She helped coax something out of me that’s been lying dormant, something fierce. (And there’s another positive F-word for you.)

Stay tuned.

Xo,

Alexis

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Homecoming

 

The details: Coat: Vintage via Hanna Antiques // Sweater, loafers & bracelet: J. Crew // Denim: American Eagle Outfitters // Clutch: Clare Vivier

Recently I was back in my hometown during my high school’s Homecoming. Although I’m not actually at home in these photos, the pictures kind of capture the mood I was in. I think I finally faced up to the fact that you can go home again, but the view will be quite different. I thought of all that I had hoped to find when I returned home — a feeling I needed to remember — and when it wasn’t there, I felt a little lost. It was like I’d never lived there at all, a frightening feeling for someone who orients herself by her birthplace and current residence.

I haven’t blogged much this month because I’ve been trying to reconcile making the kind of art that matters to me with publishing content people respond to.  I’m actively trying to find a “home” for what I do. But it occurred to me that I can do both, and that I’ve already created a place for myself. So you’ll see a bit more of that going forward, and I hope you’ll enjoy it.

This session was shot in Norwood, one of Birmingham’s historic neighborhoods, at the site of my dream house. Yes, it’s stripped down, and no, it’s not restored to its former glory. But there’s something poignant in the possibility of what it can be, standing in the grand and proud shadow of what it was. There’s something awesome in what it is, as it is. Can you see it? As a writer/journalist I am searching for the stories in our ruined memories, looking for treasure buried by the ravages of time.  It doesn’t have to be pretty.  Somehow I think that desire was caught on film this time, with no filter. What has this house seen? What stories can it tell, and what stories does it wait to welcome? That speaks to me, and the same is true for us as people. It’s why I love what I do.

It’s also why this outfit represents Magic City classic style for me: a turtleneck sweater, suede loafers, and denim, with a classic wool and mink coat. I found the coat for $60 at Hanna Antiques in perfect condition a couple of years ago. And what I prize most is its tag from Loveman’s of Alabama (another piece of Birmingham history that we now know as the McWane Center). It’s the kind of outfit I wore when I was in college, and my taste is pretty much the same off the yard.

Knowing yourself and being true to that knowledge means you’ll always be in style.

Special thanks to Mr. Melton, the homeowner, for kindly letting me trespass to daydream.

// Alexis

Power & Passion

 

Silk blouse, wool slacks, leopard pumps and necklace via J.Crew

Who says you can’t go home again? I was really excited to get to shoot these photos in my hometown (Brewton, Alabama). I’ve been going home quite often lately and wanted to show off some of its beauty and meaning. When I saw the gorgeous geraniums out front at The Leigh Place, I knew it would be the perfect spot.

Although it’s not quite Fall, I’m wearing one of the seasons major upcoming color trends: Red. The fiery color of passion and power is one of my favorites, and wearing it from head to toe is a risk I’m willing to try. Wearing a monochromatic look in this way also has a slimming effect. If you’d like to try the trend in a more subtle way, separates make it easy. Just pair a blouse, shoe or slacks with a more neutral item. And a red lip is always in season–MAC’s Ruby Woo is a must-have that works for just about all complexions!

See more shots from this look at Instagram.

XO // Alexis

 

Iris Apfel stars in emojis+INC line for Macy’s

In today’s “fabulous at every age” news… we’re totally here for it. (Did you somehow miss our last post? #TeamIris)

Haute off the press release:

“I.N.C. International Concepts, exclusively at Macy’s, today reveals its Fall 2016 campaign, “Iris Meets I.N.C.,” and launches its corresponding emoji keyboard inspired by campaign star, Iris Apfel.

Designed by Snaps and with input from Apfel, the keyboard includes emojis, stickers, and GIFs featuring Apfel, her signature quotes, and items from the “Iris Meets I.N.C.” collection. The emojis also incorporate lifestyle categories, including beauty, food and beverage, and an assortment of birthday-themed graphics in celebration of Apfel’s upcoming 95th birthday on August 29.

“I’m a little old for emojis, and I didn’t know what they were,” said Apfel. “But everyone seems to like them, and I want everyone to have a good time. If my face makes people happy, I’m all for it.”

The creative advertising campaign, shot by Ben Watts, features Apfel, both on her own and alongside model Linda Vojtova, wearing five looks from the collection. As previously announced, INC teamed up with Apfel to develop a collection of approximately 40 “must-have” clothing and jewelry pieces that play into fall’s “mod” trend revival. Apfel consulted with I.N.C.’s design team and provided creative direction on the collection, which focuses on stylish and versatile wardrobe staples and a wide assortment of her signature bangles.

The emojis will appear throughout all elements of the campaign, including product hangtags, digital advertising and direct mail.

“This is Macy’s first foray into emojis, and Iris Apfel’s campaign for I.N.C. was the perfect occasion to try something we’ve never done before,” said Nancy Slavin, senior vice president of marketing for Macy’s Merchandising Group. “Iris has collaborated with other fashion brands in recent years, so we wanted to take a fresh approach. She’s an icon whose appeal spans multiple generations, and we see these emojis as a fun way to amplify the campaign through mobile first. Her fans are going to go crazy!”

Beginning August 3, the emojis are available for free download on iOS and Android through the Apple App and Google Play stores.

The “Iris Meets I.N.C.” collection will be available exclusively at Macy’s stores and on macys.com in early September 2016.”

All images courtesy of Macy’s

“FALL” in love with fashion this season

 Be sure to catch us on ABC 33/40’s Talk of Alabama this morning as we bring you tips, trends and pieces to try! We won’t spill all the tea, but we have goodies from local boutiques South Boutique in Trussville and Festivity in Homewood, as well as local brand Aviate and items from your favorite big box department and discount stores: Belk and Target!

Thanks for watching!

Alexis

Nope.

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New York Fashion Week is underway, and Hood By Air is showing this cashmere look…for the gentlemen. Your thoughts? Shout out to SCDD reader Celeste S. for pointing this out!

Do you want to see what the hottest designers are showing for Fall 2015 ready-to-wear, from the comfort of your sofa? Check out the shows HERE.

Sophia Webster brings glamour, whimsy to J. Crew shoe collection

If you have read this blog for any length of time, then you’re probably aware of how much I love J. Crew (one might call it an obsession!). It can be difficult to find well-made, unique pieces that retain a sense of relevance and charm from one season to the next, but I never go wrong when I shop there. And rather than having to piece together an ensemble from multiple places, I can often find a head-to-toe look all at once at my local J. Crew.

Shop J. Crew’s New Arrivals by clicking HERE.

More than once, I’ve run in the Birmingham store in a complete panic because I need something at the last minute, and thanks to their Very Personal Stylists and wide selection, have been successful in pulling something together.  (P.S. The VPS work around your schedule – which is super-convenient!)

This season, I’m especially excited about the Sophia Webster for J. Crew Holiday Collection. I’ve shared Ms. Webster’s line before, and her newest collection does not disappoint.

Tom Mora (Head of J.Crew Women’s Design) says, “Sophia Webster is such a natural fit for us – her use of color and patterns feels really in touch with the J.Crew DNA and all of the things we love.  We try never to take ourselves too seriously, and I think she has that same sensibility.” (Agreed! – Alexis)

Famed editor Diana Vreeland once said, “The eye has to travel.”  As Webster’s pieces are exquisitely detailed in terms of pattern and construction – I suggest keeping the remainder of your look simple so that the focus is on your feet. These shoes bring chic pizazz to your LBDs, sheaths, pencil skirts and sweaters; couldn’t you just see them with a pair of slim leather pants or destroyed denim and a simple tee?

I’ll take the bronze-black Eva and floral-multi Lola in a size 8, please and thank you!

Images via J. Crew

#OOTD

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I rarely do outfit posts, but since I’m linking up with My Life Well Loved’s #14DaysofStyle contest on Instagram, I thought I’d share today’s look. I’m wearing J. Crew’s navy and cream silk gingham top, a black pencil skirt and bubble necklace, and C. Wonder’s blue velvet “Southern Belle” smoking slippers.

I love patterns, mixing black and navy, and pieces that are a bit quirky, and this outfit has all those elements.  Fall is  not my favorite season, but being able to stick to my style in unique ways helps me hang on until Spring and Summer roll back around. Oh – I’m also wearing a black cardigan…because I don’t want to catch a cold or the flu! 😉

Images via J. Crew and CWonder

Saks Fifth Avenue to present fall fashion this Saturday

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Will you be in attendance at Magic City Classic festivities next week? If you’ve been once, you know this is one of Birmingham’s biggest social events and a premier occasion to see and be seen. To preview some of the hautest looks this season, you should attend Saks’ fashion event this Saturday, October 18.

And to refresh your memory and guide your shopping, click HERE for one of our most popular posts.

Get chic: Riverchase Belk flagship store opens October 15!

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Gift cards between $5-$500 will be given away to the first 400 people in line at next week’s event.

Mark your calendars, darlings! The Riverchase Galleria will debut its new flagship Belk during a Grand Opening Celebration next Thursday. This remodel and expansion project has been two years in the making. Ready to shop ’til you drop? Join Belk for the ribbon-cutting ceremony at 9:30 AM; the first 400 people will receive Belk Gift Cards worth $5-$500! And that’s not all: Belk will donate $65,000 to local charities in honor of its grand opening. The charities include the United Way, Birmingham Children’s Theatre, Red Mountain Theatre, Hoover City Schools, and the Breast Cancer Research Foundation of Alabama.

As you evaluate your fall wardrobe, Belk has you covered with clothing and accessories which make modern, southern statements. What’s on its Fall Most Wanted List for Women? Here are some pieces that can help you update your look this season:

  • The Soft Pant – Easy elegance is a given with a bottom that will bring a big bang to any wardrobe; softly structured and often athletic inspired. Start with solids and work your way up to bold patterns. Fem is fresher than ever with a sporty attitude.
  • Longer Skirts – Go over the knee, mid-calf or all the way. These new lengths are fast becoming show stopping style staples.
  • The Creative Cardigan -This sweater is the season’s must have completer piece with fresh shapes, clever trims and interesting textures. Let the layering begin!
  • The Novelty Vest – Who Wore What When? Well who knows, but if she wore it with a vest–furry, fluffy, quilted or tailored–then the look was on its way to awesome. Try it! Pair it with a longer skirt for extra style points.
  • The Fashion Sweatshirt – On loan from the gym, this item has had more staying power than anyone could have predicted. Fabric blocking and luxe embellishments have elevated this top from “so so” to seriously chic.
  • The Tunic Top – No bells, no whistles. Go glam in a top that is pure perfection with its practical polish. High-low hems continue, while novelty fabrics feel so right.
  • The Midi Length Sheath – Take a look at a twist on a tried and true silhouette. This is the dress that turns a classic into a cause for celebration.
  • The Statement Neck – Logical or luxurious? Both! Bold stones, chain details and burnished metals. This jewelry item can update and refresh any old frock!
  • Over the Knee Boots – Strut your stuff in this fall fashion phenomenon. They feel modern and look so stylish. Worn with slim pants or skirt, it will most definitely deserve a selfie.
  • The Satchel – With its simple shape and subtle details, this classic bag captures an “of the moment” fashion vibe. Perfect to add a pop of color to any look.

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