Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Sam & Libby for Target Review - Fall 2014

A new crop of Sam & Libby footwear has emerged at Target, and the array of fashion-forward styles has certainly caught my attention. (You may recall my previous Sam & Libby review last fall or in the spring of 2013.) 

This season, pointy pumps, sturdy ankle boots, and chic flats round out the mix. In true Fashion Trend Guide form, I'm reviewing some of my top picks for fall 2014. 

First up, collection pros:
What I didn't love:
  • My store didn't have a great selection of shoes in my size
  • I found the pointy pumps to be narrow and not as comfortable as I'd hoped

Sam & Libby for Target-Fall2014

The Dory two-piece pumps run true to size, and they have a back zip. I still had to unbuckle them to put them on, and they felt more comfortable than they looked to me. I'd still reserve these heels for occasions when I know I won't be walking or standing for more than a couple of hours. I adore the sheen and textural detail on the toe. They come in other colorways including a beige snake version that's on-trend.

Sam & Libby Dory Pumps

I own these Chelsea bow flats in white, beige, and black, so when I saw the leopard, I had to have them. Not only are they leather, but they are the few ballet flats that actually work for me in terms of fit and comfort. The bow detail is feminine, and these run true to size. Run, don't walk to Target for these! They also come in gold for fall, as well as navy, purple, tan, etc. 

Sam & Libby Chelsea Bow Flats

Caged heels hold a special place in my heart, mainly due to their bootie-pump hybrid quality. This Norah style runs true to size, and is selling out quickly in my store. I found them easy to walk in with ample ankle support. The teardrop cutouts are sexy, and I can imagine these heels styled with everything from tailored trousers to A-line mini skirts and body con midi dresses.

Sam & Libby Norah Caged Pumps

This rugged Deanna boot seemed plain and unassuming on the shelf, but once I tried them on, I fell in love. I'll be buying them in black for a '90s-inspired grunge vibe with floral dresses and flannels this fall. Not only are them comfortable and easy to walk in due to the chunky 4" heel, they're also easy to slip on due to the elastic gore. I'm wearing my usual size, but I tried them on barefoot, so I'd size up (half a size) if I want to wear thick socks with them for fall/winter.

Sam & Libby Deanna Heeled Bootie

The Kirstie Chelsea boots run slightly narrow for me, but were otherwise comfortable. They're a pull-on style with chic gold colored trim on the side and front. I envision these dressed up with a '60s shift dress or full mini skirt, or dressed down with leggings and waxed skinny jeans.

Sam & Libby Kirstie Chelsea Boots

The Anya boots pleasantly surprised me with their comfort. I expected them to be hard to walk in but once I put them on and walked up and down the aisle, they felt good. They run true to size and I'd style them with pencil skirts, midi dresses, and dark denim. 

Sam & Libby Anya Shootie

When it comes to shoes, I'm not a loafer person, but these Nyla loafers were comfortable, true to size, and have a chic chain design stitched on the vamp. I actually liked them much more once I tried them on! They're slightly preppy for me, but I can imagine them with tuxedo trousers, striped skirts, and cropped denim. 

Sam & Libby Nyla Loafer


Get more TargetStyle inspiration by following along on Pinterest!

See more from Sam & Libby:

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Fall Winter 2015-2016 Fashion Trend Forecast

One of the reasons that I love fashion is that it's always changing. A trend may be relevant one week and on the way out soon after. So how do we keep up with the constantly evolving trend cycle?  Fashion trend forecasting companies such as New York-based Fashion Snoops provide in-depth trend reports and forecasts, complete with Pantone color swatches, mood movies, street style galleries, and an abundance of style inspiration for any fashion designer, manufacturer, buyer, or merchandiser who wants to know what will be on-trend in 12-18 months. 

For fall 2015 and winter 2016, there are four key fashion trends that Fashion Snoop is highlighting. I had a chance to visit the Fashion Snoops trend galleries and attend their popular trend seminar at MAGIC Market Week, and I'll be sharing key points on each of their four trends.


*Please note that this blog post is protected by copyright laws and may not be republished without permission. Students - please feel free to use this information for school projects as long as it's not reproduced or republished online and you properly cite Fashion Snoops and Fashion Trend Guide as sources. 

The first trend story, Inner Calm, is a cozy translation of a Sunday afternoon in bed with a cappuccino and a duvet. Tucked away miles away from civilization, the Inner Calm man and woman live in a minimalist wood cabin, where they've created a cocoon atmosphere with their home and way of dress. Fabrics are knit heavy with chunky yarns and multiple textures. Shapes are voluminous, with layered looks. Ribbed knit, mohair, high pile furs, brushed wools, and tissue knits are key. Nature factors in not only with natural fibers, but with fur pelts and abstract motifs. Neutral and light colors keep it clean yet warm. Minimalist lines add subtle modern edge. Design details include draped pockets, sweater tie knots, and elongated sleeves. Marbelized techniques and cracked surfaces complement the coldness. The sweater set is an important item, as are: the elongated sweater dress, wide-leg pants, cocoon coat, knit pants, turtlenecks, and the blanket coat. A Nordic heritage with colors inspired by ice and glaciers is key to this story. 

Inner Calm trend forecast for fall 2015 winter 2016

See Inner Calm examples:






The second trend story, City Slicker, is about the ultimate urban dweller who is at home in an active setting. Their metropolis surroundings are reflected in their lustrous surfaces, sharp silhouettes, and plenty of contrasting details. There's an underlying reference to sport. The head-to-toe look embraces the mineral sleekness of the city and is a celebration of the sportif lifestyle with a decidedly urbane approach. Materials are tweed, double-faced, and technical. Mesh, quilting, and PVC are important for this story. Sheer sleeves, side-panel pants, and mixed media techniques figure prominently. Marbled surfaces reflect the metropolis influence. The elongated shirt, cocoon coat, shirtdress, cropped wide-leg pants, Bermuda shorts, and parka are key items. Colors are bright and energetic (like on this sporty top) with positive energy. Digital blue, bright orange, and yellow contrast with industrial steel, concrete, and glass colors.

City Slicker trend forecast for fall 2015 winter 2016

See City Slicker examples: 






Northern Narrative (a.k.a. Artisan Journey) is about old textile traditions. Decorative elements create a one-of-a-kind feel expressed by the Bloomsbury set of intellectuals of London. Recalling the first half of the 20th century, the story calls to mind the quarters of writer Virginia Woolf and painter Duncan Grant. There's a dreamy and adventurous spirit. It's rooted in bohemian territory with an arts and crafts element. Materials are silk chiffon, needlepoint, lace, and jacquard. Outerwear is shearling, wool, and astrakhan. Design details include embroidery and quilting. The mid-calf silhouette is important. William Morris florals influence the trend. The blanket coat, peasant blouse, classic cardigan, shearling jacket, quilted jacket, turtleneck sweater, and mid-calf dress are key items. The color palette is bright and lively. Burgundy red and golden are important, as well as blues and moss green or pine greens.

Northern Narrative trend forecast for fall 2015 winter 2016

See Northern Narrative examples:






Kingdom is a beautiful story that addresses the unchartered territories, cozy corners, rustic surfaces, time-honored tribal traditions of the North, tales untold of strong men and women and their rugged adventures. Telling the story of a medieval romance, Kingdom is rooted in fairytales coupled with a tough warrior reality and a will to conquer. With a harmonious contrast between pure air, aggressive barren surfaces, and enveloped green earth, this story is raw romance at its best. The color palette is rich and includes forest green, maroon, jewel tones, lavender, and earthy brown. Materials are leather, draped jersey, Army fatigues, velvet, lace and jacquard. Patterns are folkloric and nature-inspired, with storybook inspiration. Key items are the cape, lace-up leather pants, pleated skirts, embellished folk hardware details, mohair sweaters, parkas, and full-skirted dresses. Closures are lace-up and belted, with 3-D appliqués. Statement chokers, chain belts, and palm bracelets round out the jewelry options.

Kingdom trend forecast for fall 2015 winter 2016


See Kingdom examples:





To see more photos of future trends, follow along with me on Pinterest, where I'll be posting color palettes, fabric examples, and more trend forecasting inspiration.

Catch up with me on Facebook and Instagram @thekeytochic for additional fashion photos, shopping, and personal style. 

Want more forecasts? See my fall 2014/winter 2015 trend forecast and my spring summer 2015 trend forecast on my other blog, The Key To Chic.

Browse more 2015-16 trends:





* Check out Fashion Snoops for additional trend reports and subscription services.

All photos are protected by copyright and text published on Fashion Trend Guide is adapted from Fashion Snoops and may not be republished in any medium without written permission from Fashion Trend Guide. 

© 2014 fashiontrendguide.blogspot.com.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Five Footwear Trends for 2015

Earlier this month I spent some time browsing the seemingly endless selection of footwear vendors at FNPlatform in Las Vegas. As a self-professed shoe addict, it's one of the elements of the trade show season that I most enjoy. What better way to spend a day scouting emerging trends, photographing my favorite shoes, and meeting with brand reps. After visiting a few booths and reviewing hundreds of photos, five strong trends for 2015 have emerged. Let's take a closer look at my favorites. 

1. Petal to the metal. 
High shine metallics made a showing on sandals, boots, and delicate heels. I spotted crackled textures, sleek shine, and even hologram effects. Clockwise, from top left: Michael Antonio, Diba True, Schutz, and Elly Clay.

metallic shoe trend for 2015

Browse more metallics here:



2. Python prints. 
Snake-inspired textures slithered onto a wide variety of women's footwear from high heels to espadrilles, and for 2015, they come in an array of unexpected colors. Clockwise from top left: Diba True, Michael Antonio, Michael Antonio, and Miucha.

snake print shoe trend for 2015

See more snake prints:





3. Modern mules. 

That '90s staple, the mule, continues into 2015 with new colors and textures. Block heels update the silhouette, while cutout effects and buckles add further interest. Clockwise from top left: Carrano, Cristófoli, Michael Antonio, and Cristófoli. 

mules footwear trend for 2015

See more mules:




4. Cut it out. 
Almost every booth I visited seemed to feature laser cuts and cutout effects on open-toed styles. Combined with buckles, lace-up styling, or zips, they make for shoes that are bound to be the focus of an outfit. Clockwise from top left: Stéphanie Classic, Diba True, Miucha, and Carrano. 

laser cut shoe trend for 2015

See more cutout styles:






5. Electric slides. 
Who says comfort sandals can't be cute? The footbed sandal trend ignited by Phoebe Philo and many others gets an update for 2015 with new prints and embellishments. Clockwise from top left: Schutz, Cristófoli, Carrano, and Cristófoli.  

Footbed Sandals trend 2015

Browse more footbed sandals:




See more footwear trends below and keep up with all my MAGIC Market Week coverage and trend forecasting photos on Pinterest.


Wednesday, August 13, 2014

See the Altuzarra for Target Lookbook

If you've been waiting with bated breath to see first glimpses of the Altuzarra for Target lookbook, then today's your day. About a month in advance of the September 14, 2014 debut, images of the 50-piece collection have just been released by Harper's Bazaar in conjunction with a preview party hosted by a radiant Garance Doré in New York. 

How to describe the collection? It's a twist of boho with a healthy dose of sex appeal. True to Altuzarra's sleek signature style, the textures appear rich, with embroidered details and digital printing. Much more sophisticated than previous Target collaborations, this one's sure to appeal to chic ladies and boardroom babes looking to amp up their wardrobes with thigh-slit pencil skirts, low-cut gowns, pretty python prints, tailored blazers, and killer high-heeled footwear. Good news for your wallet and for international buyers: prices range from $18 to $90, and items will also be available on net-a-porter


Altuzarra for Target lookbook

Have a look at my other blog The Key To Chic to see how ten looks from the Altuzarra for Target lookbook compare to recent Altuzarra runway looks. The similarities will amaze you!

Follow me on Twitter for up-to-the-minute #AltuzarraforTarget updates and expert shopping tips on how to score all the pieces you want with no hassle.  

P.S. I've been shopping Target's collaborations for many years, and I'll be sharing all my tips and tricks to help you score your favorites! Happy shopping!

See more Altuzarra style:

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

In Ireland

Serene rose gardens, decaying castles, prehistoric stone forts, steep cliffs overlooking the Atlantic, and charming seaside villages all contribute to the beauty of Ireland. I spend some time there earlier in the month, and I left the country inspired by the lush landscapes, beautiful gardens, and the affable nature of the locals. Please enjoy these images that represent some of my favorite summer 2014 travel memories, and see more photos of Ireland on The Key To Chic

Tralee Rose Garden Ireland
Kilfenora Ireland
The Malton Killarney-Ireland
TraleeRose Garden Ireland
Dun-Aonghasa-Ireland
Muckross-House-Ireland
Inishmoor Island Ireland
Dingle Peninsula Ireland

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Back to School




July is almost over, can you believe it? For students, that means the back-to-school season is nearly here. Although I'm no longer a student, I can still feel the anticipation and excitement in the air. The end of summer conjures up fond memories of shopping and styling new looks for the school year. It's all about looking effortlessly chic, being confident, and having fun with new twists on fall fashion. Plus, who doesn't love to see the new fall arrivals that hit the racks this time of year? 

This fall, I've teamed up with Sears to showcase my take on their Back To School, Back To You theme by styling a back-to-school look featuring my favorite trend - fall florals. One glance into my closet will reveal that blooming bouquets rule; they've always appealed to my sartorial senses. 

For fall, I'm especially drawn to darker, moodier florals. Not sure how to style flower printed pieces for fall? If you're brave, mix florals with plaids for an updated take on grunge, or opt for an understated vibe by anchoring florals with solid separates such as moto jackets, cozy cardigans, dark denim, cute boots, and sleek blazers. 

Using fall florals as my back-to-school theme, I styled a relaxed head-to-toe look with some top picks from the Here + Now department at Sears.  The hard part was narrowing down my favorite floral pieces because fortunately, there was an abundance of choice in my Sears store. After trying on a few looks in the fitting room, I went with my instinct and based my look around this floral print jumpsuit


Sears Style floral jumpsuit with Bongo cardigan and Seventeen western ankle boots, #SearsStyleFind
Sears Style floral jumpsuit with Bongo cardigan
Sears Style floral jumpsuit with Bongo cardigan and Seventeen western ankle boots
Sears Style floral jumpsuit with Bongo cardigan
Rag & Bone Harrow inspired western boots by Seventeen at Sears
Sears Style floral jumpsuit with Bongo cardigan and Seventeen western ankle boots

Outfit c/o Sears: Metaphor sunglasses, JWK floral jumpsuit, Bongo cocoon cardigan, Metaphor studded cross body bag (similar version), initial bracelet, and Seventeen microsuede Western ankle boots

As soon as I spotted the floral print jumpsuit, I knew it had to be mine. The relaxed fit, pockets, and lace trim instantly drew me in. I envisioned wearing it for summer with strappy sandals, a sheer kimono jacket, and stacked bangles.  For my fall back-to-school inspired look, I'm wearing it with a cocoon cardigan, studded crossbody bag, and Western ankle boots. The comfort factor of the jumpsuit rivals that of pajamas, making it an obvious choice for casual days. If I were a student, it would be a top pick for my first day back at school.

For more back-to-school fall floral inspiration, have a peek at my Pinterest and Instagram photos. 
Sears logo


The hottest trends, celebrity style and fashion tips you can afford to try. 

Compensation was provided by Sears via Mode Media.  The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Sears.