Luxury Look-Alikes for Less: Bucket Bags for Spring, Michael Kors vs. Target, & More!


One of the biggest bag trends for spring is the bucket bag, perhaps for the variety of fabrics, patterns, material, & detailed straps that can go into the spacious accessory. Although bucket bags have been around for quite a while, celebrities have been toting the bag around since last year. They’re perfect for traveling, when you’re on the go, or headed for out for lunch with the girls. 

Reese Witherspoon, Miranda Kerr, Jamie Chung, & Julianne Hough with bucket bags.

This perfect all-purpose day bag has been spotted on A-listers & style icons like Wild star Reese Witherspoon with a yellow Elizabeth & James bucket bag, model Miranda Kerr with a hot pink bag, actress & fashion blogger Jamie Chung with a printed Elizabeth & James bag, & actress-dancer Julianne Hough with a tan bucket bag.

Just for fun, I wanted to share some gorgeous luxury bucket bags, which come in many forms, with many strap varieties, buckets, studs, & ties. Of course, these gorgeous & high quality bags are investment pieces, but when you’re shopping on a budget, they’re pretty steep when it comes to price tags.

Luxury bucket bags.

SHOP: Saint Laurent ($2,150.00) in red @Net-A-Porter, Michael Kors ($822.94) in blue @Farfetch, Alice + Olivia ($695.00) in black @Neiman Marcus, Elizabeth & James ($595.00) in cream @Bergdorf Goodman, Tory Burch ($475.00) in gold @Saks Fifth Avenue, & Halston ($325.00) in pink @Shop Bop.

And for those Style Darlings who are looking to upgrade their accessories collection for less with an affordable bucket bag, I’ve found these six picks, for $25.00 & under!

Affordable bucket bags.

SHOP: red ($15.99) @MANGO, white ($16.00) @Boohoo, navy ($19.99) @Target, black ($20.00) @Charlotte Russetaupe ($24.90) @Forever 21, & brown ($25.00) @Aeropostale.

Would you wear a bucket bag? How much do you typically spend on handbags & purses? Which accessory do you usually splurge on? For more stylish posts, check out how to wear floral leggings in four ways, Alexandre Vauthier’s Spring 2015 Couture collection, the latest red carpet looks from Anne Hathaway & Felicity Jones, the fringe trend inspired by Scarlett Johansson & Shailene Woodley, & Rosie Huntington-Whiteley’s London street style look for less! Happy Styling!

Fabulous In 4 Ways: A Bold Statement Necklace For Under $12!


Although the holidays may be over, that doesn’t mean it’s time to put away your best & most sparkly accessories & that includes statement necklaces. I’m pretty new to the bauble club, but I’m having fun experimenting with different ways to wear the bold piece of jewelry, which is what inspired my latest post for Fabulous in 4 Ways. I’m excited to explore the variety of style choices one can make with a statement necklace, especially when headed out for a day off of lunch with the girls, to the office for a big meeting, a cocktail party on a date, or a weekend getaway trip.

Coco Rocha, Katy Perry, Emma Roberts, Olivia Palermo, Molly Sims, & Jamie King in statement necklaces.Statement necklaces have been a prominent go-to accessory for celebrities over the years, including supermodel Coco Rocha, pop star Katy Perry in Amrapali, actress Emma Roberts, style icon Olivia Palermo, Molly Sims in a floral necklace, & Hart of Dixie‘s Jamie King.

To start this project, I choose the statement necklace ($11.98) in black & gold from Target, which has just enough glitz & glam to dress up several combinations of basics with prints & rich textures.

Target - statement necklace $11.98.

For daytime, I love the ease of this look & how just one piece instantly adds some punch against the backdrop of casual separates. Also, the necklace is successful over a basic blouse & colorblock look for a fashionable office environment, playing up your personality, yet still remaining professional.

Fabulous in 4 Ways - Day & Work

SHOP day look: sweater ($24.80) @Forever 21, jeans ($19.99) @Zara, & ballet flats ($44.10) @Bon Ton. SHOP work look: top ($25.00) @Topshop, skirt ($34.11) @ASOS, & shoes ($32.99) @Charlotte Russe.

When headed to a cocktail party, a statement necklace is just the piece to elevate a classic LBD, sheath, or lace frock. Lastly, when taking a road trip for the weekend, a statement necklace is perfectly interchangeable when considering how to efficiently pack to get the most out of your wardrobe.  

Fabulous in 4 Ways - Cocktail & Weekend

SHOP cocktail look: dress ($49.99) @ModCloth, sandal ($19.94) @DSW, & clutch ($15.00) @Payless. SHOP weekend look: sweater ($19.97) @New York & Company, sweat pants ($41.30) @Last Call, booties ($44.99) @Nine West, & cardigan ($18.99) @Kohl’s.

For more statement necklace inspiration, I choose a few more styles that are both affordable & adjustable to any neckline for any outfit.

statement necklaces.

SHOP: gothic collar necklace ($16.00) @Boo Hoo, marquise necklace ($15.00) @Charming Charlie, tribal necklace ($12.90) @Forever 21, & pharaoh bib necklace ($20.00) @Bauble Bar.

Which way would you wear a statement necklace? What’s your favorite go-to piece of jewelry? Do you mix p your wardrobe staples to create new, stylish options? For more fashionable posts, check out Natalie Portman’s Dior look for less, full red carpet galleries from the Critics Choice Awards & this year’s Golden Globes, Runway Rundown lookbooks from Jenny Packham & Alice + Olivia, & affordable fashion inspired by HBO’s Girls. Happy Styling!

01/22/2015 Darling of the Day: Natalie Portman’s Tweed Dior Look for Less!


I’d like to start 2015 off right with some refined celebrity style inspiration & the year’s first Darling of the Day is none other than the always flawless Natalie Portman who attended a celebration in a navy top, Dior tweed skirt (& matching jacket on the chair behind her), opaque tights, & satin pointy toe pumps. The Oscar-winner looks chic & winter-ready in her elegant ensemble, perfect to inspire any office look. These separates are wardrobe essentials & can be mixed up for a variety of looks, especially a tweed skirt to pair with a moto jacket or ruffled blouse when heading to lunch or out for a night of cocktails.

Natalie Portman in Dior.

SHOP: top ($15.00) @JC Penney, skirt ($32.99) @Saks Off 5th, tights ($5.90) @Forever 21, & Lauren Ralph Lauren pumps ($39.99) @Lord & Taylor. TOTAL: $93.88.

For some stylish posts, check out more from Style Darling, including full red carpet galleries from this year’s Golden Globes & Critics Choice Movie Awards, as well as lookbooks from Jenny Packham, Tory Burch, Marchesa, & Badgley Mischka. Happy Styling!

The Stylish Five: Loving A Little Leopard, Inspired by Heidi Klum, Miranda Kerr, & More!


When it comes to animal prints, my go-to is zebra, which goes back to my natural love all black & white patterns. However, as we’re in the thick of summer, stores are filling up with fall fashions, including luxe leopard pieces to mix up with neutral separates & pops of color in your accessories.

Olivia Palermo, Miranda Kerr, & Heidi Klum

Trendsetter Olivia Palermo styled her separates by Tibi with a pop of leopard in her skinny belt, which offset the geometric look of her ankle strap sandals. Model Miranda Kerr was flawless this spring when hitting the street for a stylish day out with a bold leopard A.L.C. duffel bag to add a trendy splash of personality to her button down shirt, denim skirt, & thigh high boots. Project Runway host Heidi Klum shows off her wild side (& her legs!) in a high slit skirt & embellished too.

For affordable leopard love in your wardrobe, I found these functional & fashionable pieces that are sure to make a splash when corrdinated a variety of ways. First, the leopard tote ($2.50) from Forever 21 is great for all of your on-the-go needs, especially when wanting to use a durable recyclable bag when hitting the market. Also, you can dress up or dress down the tiered leopard tank ($34.00) from Dress Barn (which I own & love!) with dark denim skinnies & a blazer for a girls’ night out, or cardigan & pencil skirt for the office. For a truly wild look, pair these loose fit pants ($17.95) from H&M with a black tank & gold flats for day, or mix up your look with a crop top & pointy heels for evening.

leopard images

I love shopping for printed belts, which can work well with a wrap dress, shirtdress, over a cardigan, or when you wanna cinch in a tunic top to show off your waist, like the leopard skinny belt ($24.90) from Express. One of my most recent purchases come from Charlotte Russe, & that is the patent thong sandal ($7.50), which was such a great buy too since there’s currently a BOGO $5 sale of select shoes. So, I also indulged in a white pair to wear with sporty jersey dresses & when heading out to the beach this summer.

For one last look at some leopard inspirations, I put together some of my favorite images, high end & affordable items, & celebrity moments that include leopard. This includes a September 2010 Vogue UK shoot fetauring supermodel Kate Moss in an embellished leopard jacket. Scarlett Johansson added a pop of leopard in her Christian Louboutin pointy toe pumps with a Vivienne Westwood dress. Also, to celebrate leopard on your nails, there’s the Sally Hansen strips ($9.99) in leopard, available @Ulta. Also, you can keep warm on those cool summer knits with this Apt. 9 leopard scarf ($11.99) from Kohl’s. For some designer inspiration, the paneled leopard dress ($1,150.00) by Escada is sold @Neiman Marcus. Lastly, the leopard heart drop earrings ($16.00) from River Island are playful & flirty to dress down a classic LBD.

Kate Moss for Vogue UK, Scarlett Johansson in a Vivienne Westwood dress & Christian Louboutin pumps, Leopard earrings by River Island, Sally Hansen leopard nail stickers, leopard scarf from Kohl's, & Escada leopard panel dress from Neiman Marcus.

How do you like to wear leopard? What’s your favorite leopard accessory? Which leopard pieces are your favorites? Happy Styling!

The $100 Challenge: Summer Vacation Must-Haves For The Budget Shopper!


Let’s get right to it! I’m going away this week to The Hamptons for yet another exciting & stylish two weeks, while attending a school-related Writer’s Conference. This is one of my favorite & most fashionable times of year, where I can prepare my wardrobe & budget to reinvent new looks for the hip south shore niche. Speaking of a budget, I’ve been very price tag conscious & in doing that, I recommend the following for a memorable vacation. Also, I love the diversity of these pieces & how they can be worn in so many different ways!

Dress @Dress Barn, $46.00

The abstract shirtdress ($46.00) from Dress Barn is perfect for playing up your preppy side, while still celebrating the bright & neon sides of summer. Pair this dress with metallic sandals & a messenger bag for day, or glam it up in the evening with peep toe pumps & stacked bangles.

Leopard flip flop @Payless, $9.99

To keep your summer style fresh & timeless at the same time, classic patterns are the best way to go. With that, the sunset disc flat flip flop ($9.99) in leopard from Payless is a flirty way to amp up your separates, mixing prints like animal inspiration with polka dots or seersucker. Also, leopard looks great with bright hues like a pair of red lace shorts, an orange sheath dress, or black ruffled romper.

Blouse @H&M, $9.95

To build up wardrobe that you can transform from season to season, try something playful like an unexpected topper like this sleeveless blouse ($9.95) from H&M. At first glance, the print looks like flower petals, but upon closer examination, the soft blue is actually eyelashes. As seen on the model above, try this top with faux leather skinnies, but if you’re looking for something more low maintenance, add a contrasting color like yellow bermuda shorts & espadrilles for a lunch date or with a white pencil skirt & cardigan for a more professional look.

Earrings @Icing, $8.50Accessories are an important part of building any look, especially when it comes to jewelry. I was once a silver-only gal, but as I’ve grown up, I see the value in expanding with different metals. Here the drop earrings ($8.50) from Icing recall a deco feel that can work as a statement piece with an LBD & strappy sandals, a maxi dress & modern cuff bracelet, & a knotted button down shirt & denim shorts. Not to mention that now is a great time to invest in timeless jewelry since the store’s entire website is BOGO 50% off!

Tote @TJMaxx, $19.99Naturally, a tote bag is any Style Darling’s must-have when going out & about for the summer. This Yoki perforated tote ($19.99) from TJMaxx is right on trend with laser cut details on luxe materials. It’s the perfect size to fill with your cell phone, a pair of sunglasses, & whatever best seller you’re taking with you to the beach. To dress up the bag even more, braid or tie a bold scarf onto the handle to add a pop of color.

If you’re shopping on a budget, like me, don’t fret over spending too much. These five fabulous finds total for under $100, to be specific: $94.43 before tax! What summer essentials are on your wish list or crowding your closet? Happy Styling!