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Archive for June, 2013

Aisle Style: What to Wear to a Wedding

Posted on: June 17th, 2013 by Leah No Comments

The month of June, second only to August, is the most popular month for weddings. With all the different types of weddings it can be hard to know what to wear. For most weddings, the invitation will indicate the type of attire the couple would like their guests to don by listing the dress code. If this is not listed than your next guess as to the dress code is to look at where and what time of day the wedding will be held. If it’s an outdoor wedding, beach formal would be more appropriate. An evening wedding indicates a more formal affair and should be attended with semi-formal to formal attire unless otherwise noted.

Weddings are a celebratory event and that means what you wear should reflect that. I prefer to always err on the side of more formal as its better to be over dressed then under. That said, you never want to upstage the bride. This means no attention-getting styles showing too much leg or too much decolletage, no loud colors and absolutely no white. Also, stay away from black dresses for early morning or afternoon outdoor weddings and if you wear a black dress, make sure it doesn’t look like you’re attending a funeral. Pair it with a colorful heel and bag and bold jewelry.

Weddings held in the Keys tend to be beach weddings. This means your clothing will need to be sweat resistant. Choose darker colored fabrics in breathable fabrics made from natural fibers such as 100 percent cotton or linen. Also, choose shoes that you can walk on the beach in. Try dressy sandals or a wedge heel and stay away from flip flops as they’re noisy and too casual. For men, loafers or leather sandals are appropriate unless a dress code of semi-formal or formal has been noted.


What to wear to a beach wedding

Perfect for a beach or casual wedding. Dress available at Wanderlust in Key West.

What to wear by dress code:

Black Tie, Formal or White Tie dress code

This is the most formal of all wedding dress codes and is typically used for nuptials beginning after 6 p.m. For men, black tie means dark colored suits or tuxes with white shirts, a tie or bow-tie and black dress shoes. White tie means men should wear a black evening tailcoat with a white bow tie and white collared shirt. For women, I suggest wearing a floor-length evening gown or knee-length cocktail dress in satin or silk with perhaps some embellishments such as beading or sequins. Pair it with dramatic jewelry, heels and an updo for a sophisticated look. If you’re not used to wearing heels, buy a pair with a small kitten heel and a pointy toe. This will elongate your legs and give the allusion that you’re wearing heels.

Semi-Formal or Dressy Casual

This dress code is a step down from the more formal dress codes but it’s better to still err on the side of formality. For women, wear a nice cocktail dress or a fabulous skirt and blouse paired with heels. Wear lighter colors for a day time wedding and darker colors for evening weddings. For men, this dress code still means a suit and tie or slacks and sport jacket but allows more room for adding color. Wear a gray suit with a colored shirt, a patterned tie and dress shoes.

Beach Formal

Beach formal means to dress as though you’re going to a nice restaurant on a summer day. This dress code is also meant to let you know that the nuptials will take place on the beach and therefore you will need to dress for the elements (sand, sun and water). Men should wear a summer suit, linen pants or khakis, and sandals or loafers. A collared shirt is best but ties are not required. For women, a formal summer dress or long maxi dress with flats or wedges should be worn and hair and make-up can be kept more every day. With outdoor weddings, the weather can fluctuate so bring a pashmina, wrap, jacket or sweater to stay warm on a windy day.

Casual or Informal Chic

Casual translates into business casual so no jeans and t-shirts. For women, this means a nice sundress or blouse and skirt. You can wear more color to a casual wedding but stick with sandals. For casual weddings men can wear nice shorts, leather sandals and a colored shirt such as a polo, linen dress shirt or a silk dress shirt.

Aisle style I do’s

• Dress-up – weddings are a celebratory occasion so look the part.

• Keep things simple – too much is too much. Keep your make-up and dress feminine and sophisticated.

• Dress to impress – you’ll likely see friends and family that you haven’t seen in awhile and there will be lots of photos so make sure to wear something you like and want to be photographed in.

• Do use good judgment – If formality is not noted on the invitation, a cocktail dress and suit with tie will be good for just about every wedding.

Aisle style I don’ts

• No jeans, t-shirts or flip flops

• No prom dresses – for a more formal affair where a simple and sleek gown reflecting your age and the time of day.

• Absolutely no white – white is reserved for the bride so avoid wearing white, cream and ivory.

• Never upstage the bride.


Dress pictured is available at Wanderlust, 310 Petronia Street, Key West 305-509-7065, wanderlustkw.com.


Prom Style: Then and Now

Posted on: June 1st, 2013 by Leah No Comments

For most high school students, prom is a right of passage into young adulthood and an occasion to remember for life.  Regardless of how you felt about your prom, we all took part in this ritualistic experience.  Whether you went with a group, went with a date or didn’t go at all, prom is a milestone we each experienced in some way, shape or form.

Although dances and prom-like events have been going on for centuries, it wasn’t until the economic boom of the 1950’s that the prom dress industry exploded.   This was when girls started planning special shopping trips with their mothers and friends in search of “the dress” – an experience that still takes place today.  The shopping, primping and planning is as important as the actual event and is all part of this defining moment in student’s high school years.

Prom is a moment most of us can recall.  Do you remember what you wore?  What about who you went with?  When you think back on proms through the decades you likely think of the attire.  Each generation has developed their own dress code.  In the 1950’s, Grace Kelly’s black and white floor length gown from the Rear Window had a huge influence on dress styles.  Dresses in this era had a fitted bodice with  gathered voluminous full circle tulle skirts.  The 1960’s had Jackie Kennedy who made ladylike chic look effortless.  The pillbox hat and simple shift dresses were popular in pastel colors with small bows as accents. The 1970’s had Farrah Fawcet who created the first celebrity hairstyle with her famous feathered hair.  I would be remiss if I didn’t also mention John Travolta.  The 70’s were greatly influenced by disco music and known for their bell bottomed pants, ruffled tuxedo shirts and crazy tuxedo colors such as the orange and baby blue ones worn on Dumb and Dumber.  Many of the dresses from this time had empire waists with tighter fitting tops and looser bottoms.  Gold lamé, velvet and lace were also a big trend in formal wear for women.

The 1980’s prom style had big sleeves, oversized shoulder pads, big hair and lots of ruffles  – oh the tragedy that was fashion in the 1980’s.  Madonna was the style icon of the time making fingerless gloves a popular prom accessory.

Princess Diana was the style icon of the 1990’s.  Dress styles during this decade were often short, body-hugging mini-dresses made of spandex, velvet, lace and silk.  Many of the prom trends from this time included off the shoulder dress styles, black was the reigning color and choker style necklaces were popular.  If you went to prom in the early 90’s there’s a chance your date may even have sported a mullet.

Today’s prom resembled something off the red carpet.  The girls donned gowns in styles ranging from form-fitting to A-line all in vibrant hues such as blue, turquoise and coral.  Many of the dresses had cutouts along the sides and back and many more had jewel accents making it almost unnecessary to wear much if any jewelry.

Although, traditional men’s formal wear is black and white, the modern trend is for the guys to wear matching tuxedo accessories to match their date’s dress which is what many men wore to prom this year.  Under their black suits or tuxes were complimenting shirts and vests in blue, turquoise and coral.

When you look at prom style today vs. latter years, there are a few things that have stayed the same.  Corsages – it’s still customary for men to buy their dates a corsage matching her dress.  Jewelry – costume jewelry is still the staple for prom so save what you wore as you could probably have your daughter wear it to her prom and it would be right in style.  Shopping trips – the prom dresses worn today spared no expense and were done with their mothers and friends in tow.

Similar to prom, fashion is universal and unique to each individual.

Prom Style

Jaclyn Signorelli, Julia Lozano, Mallory Wiecjorek, Cheyenne Harris and Katharine Hamer


Prom Style Then and Now

Nate Gasser and Parris Everhart – Juniors at Coral Shores High School


Prom Style then and now

The Entire Group Attending Prom


prom style then and now

Bobby Griffin, Ciera Brokin, Gabby Tyrrell, and Cole Houser


Prom style then and now

Rachel Walters, Nicolas Hortensi, Sean Anderson, and Emma Belian