Loehmann’s New Season of Style Sweepstakes Makeover

posted: 11/21/11
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Emily, the winner of the What Not to Wear Loehmann's New Season of Style Sweeps.
DCL/Candace Keener

Winner: Emily from Tennessee, a social media consultant.

Style Consultant: Cecile Blanco from Style Me Now

What Emily wanted: Casual weekend outfits that are a step up from too relaxed and structured blouses to wear at the office

Cecile pre-shopped and chose an assortment of items for Emily. Her preliminary advice to Emily was not to leave the store with "maybe" items, even if they're a perfect fit. You simply won't wear them when you get them home. The goal is to like it, own it, and be excited to wear it!

Check out Emily's fantastic new looks!

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Cecile gives some tips on choosing the right blouse.
DCL/Candace Keener

Before you shop, you should purge your closet. Too many items in your wardrobe make it seem like a big, black cloud. A better solution is a small assortment of items that you wear often; the problem should be that you have too much to wear that you like. If you have a brand that works for you, stick with it. But don't get hung up on labels.

Emily wanted feminine tops, so Cecile advised focusing in on details. Ruffles and small print read feminine. Choose tops that are versatile enough to dress up (office) or down (weekend). Cecile advised against any turtlenecks. It's more feminine to show off your neck; they're simply too constraining and aren't flattering on anyone.

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Emily trying on some new denim.
DCL/Candace Keener

Cecile's tips for denim: avoid jeans with bulky back pockets because they add volume. Study pocket placement carefully - the lower the pocket, the more youthful. Opt for dark denim with no distressing. Skinny jeans can work for anyone, but avoid jeggings. Denim and leggings don't mix. If you're going to wear a skinny jean, you can wear a top that's cropped at your waist. But leggings must always be worn with a top that covers your assets. Ahem. Also, you can still get away with a denim jacket. But choose one that's nipped in at the waist and isn't too boxy.

Alterations are a good investment that women are afraid to make. Spend the money now to wear a piece over and over. They're always worth it! Think about it in terms of cost per wear. If you spend $200 on jeans that fit well, you'll wear them every week. But if you buy a holiday dress for $200, you'll wear it once or twice a year. Put money into pieces you'll wear the most frequently; Cecile likes to put money into her boots and outerwear.

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Emily models some must-have knee-high boots.
DCL/Candace Keener
  • Don't be afraid of mixing patterns and fabrics.
  • If you wear a short skirt for the weekend, wear it with a flat shoe or a flat boot. Heels make it too sexy. Also, pair it with very opaque tights.
  • Cecile's favorite tip for suiting: Break it apart. Don't always wear the jacket and trousers/skirt together.
  • Must-have shoes for every woman: Knee-high black boots, a sling-back pump in black (can go day or evening) and a pump in nude.
  • The essential handbag: It must be structured and be dressed down or up. Neutral is best - go with black or beige. Hardware gives it a luxe look.
  • Don't be afraid of wearing shapewear. Everyone can benefit. It smoothes under tight-fitting garments like sweater dresses.

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Emily modeling a classic dress.
DCL/Candace Keener

Here are some basics every woman should have in her wardrobe:

  • Jeans
  • Trousers in gray and black
  • Pencil skirt in black
  • White button-down blouse
  • Pop of color! From a blouse or a top - to tell if a color works for you, simply place a garment in front of your face and see if you light up.
  • Accessories like necklaces, bracelets and earrings, which pull together the most casual outfit.
  • Belts to show off the waist
  • Good winter coat, preferably in black or charcoal
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Some of Emily's stylish new wardrobe.
DCL/Candace Keener
  • 2 tall pairs of boots
  • 1 pair of wedges
  • 1 pair of pumps
  • Assorted accessories
  • Structured handbag
  • 8 blouses
  • 1 dress
  • 1 sweater
  • 1 coat
  • 3 jackets
  • 1 cape
  • 1 pair of jeans
  • 1 pair of corduroys
  • 2 skirts

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