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Fashion Fridays: Cheap Thrills!

July 29, 2009

5652_121320632651_73839682651_2985053_2133173_nWhen Kristi Moe proposed that I style a collection for her summer edition of Fashion Fridays (a seasonal extension of Wisconsin Fashion Week), I thought, Me? Style a live fashion show? With models and fittings and clothing (oh my!)?


The event was held in the Butler Plaza courtyard, downtown Madison, and I must say it was an excellent venue. Kristi and her team had the runway decked out with sand (I can’t imagine how the models must have struggled to walk!) and the music/lighting/general ambiance was very cool, very summery, very Miami heat—besides the 50 degree weather we experienced that evening.

Other stylists for the two other collections were Shayna Miller of Madison Magazine, who styled a high-end, South Beach-inspired collection with looks from Atticus, Twigs and Bop, and Rosalee Eichstedt, who styled a collection on her own. Rosalee’s was more of a literal take on “summer fashion,” complete with oiled models and outfits made from beach balls, toy noodles (pictured below) and a signature swim cap on each model. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention her “evening gown,” which involved a blow-up whale. I guess for that one, you just had to be there.

On to my collection…

Inspired by the  need for a budget-friendly, yet trendy wardrobe, each outfit I put together rings up UNDER $200. And, if you take into consideration the pieces you already have in your closet, the investments for looks like these are minimal! Why break the bank when it feels so good to get the look for less?! Ladies (and a few good men), I present: Cheap Thrills.

Left: The cost for this look from Patricia Shoppe (wrap dress) and Francesca’s Collections (clutch)? $116.
Middle: Seek out a faux leather piece like this vest to pair with feminine separates. All from H&M, this look’s about $130.
Right: Babydoll dresses, like this from Francesca’s, are downright easy. With a clutch from Patricia Shoppe and jewelry from H&M, this look comes in at $129.


Left: Scarves are still hot and are a versatile accessory for any occasion. This dress (The Purple Goose), scarf and clutch (both H&M) add up to a mere $81.
Middle: This hot little number and sky blue bag (both from The Purple Goose) and its corresponding accessories (H&M)  price out to $127.
Right: Stonewash digs are back (a la H&M)—take the uber-80s edge off by wearing them under a longer tunic or dress like the cotton one shown here from Francesca’s. The scarf is compliments of The Purple Goose and the bag and bangles hail from H&M. The cost for this look? $125.


Left: A little black dress can go a long way. This classic from Patricia Shoppe rings in over $100, but for its versatility, is worth the sticker price. Handbag from Francesca’s and accessories from H&M.
Middle: This look is packed with trends, from cuffed shorts, an exposed zipper on her T-shirt pocket, a cool fedora (all three from The Purple Goose) topped off with a lace scarf from H&M. If piling them into one ensemble isn’t your thing, mix and match for a more subtle trendy look. The price tag here? $133.
Right: Swimsuits aren’t only for the pool—use them as an accessory, layered under a sheer tank (from The Purple Goose) and jeans from Francesca’s. This look comes in at $189.


Left: Of course, even recessionistas need a hot little number to wear out on the town, and this bright blue dress from Francesca’s is the perfect solution. At only $75 (yes, only $75 for the whole look!) we can afford to look great and treat ourselves to our drink of choice (or two!).


All photography courtesy of Peter F. Castro. Clothing and accessories compliments of: The Purple Goose, 400 W. Verona Ave., Verona; (608) 845-2368. Patricia Shoppe, 137 W. Johnson St., Madison; (608) 256-1111. H&M, West Towne Mall, Madison; (608) 833-1059. Francesca’s Collections, Greenway Station, Middleton; (608) 831-6630.

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