If it’s good enough for a professional stylist, it’s good enough for me.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from pros in the style business, it’s that an outfit put together with a combination of high-end and lower-end elements can absolutely work. Sure, it would be wonderful to buy designer everything, but there’s a challenge in mixing the expensive items with the bargain finds to create a look that’s uniquely you. I’ve teamed:

Gap slim ankle pants with a tuxedo-style Chloe jacket…

Gap pants

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An on-sale DVF mini with houndstooth tights and a Catherine Malandrino jacket…

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A Sarah Pacini wrap sweater with a Halogen pencil skirt…

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Gap jeans with a Catherine Malandrino sweater…

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A vintage Ungaro bustier with an Anthropologie midi skirt…

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Interestingly, the statement piece of the combo isn’t always the costly one.

 

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It’s official. I’m in love with a shoe.

I must admit I’ve never owned a pair of Jimmy Choos. My pumps of choice tend to be Stuart Weitzmans, and I have a solitary pair of classic, black-patent Louboutins that come out for special occasions. But these. OMG, these!

This is the ‘Romy’ pump by Jimmy Choo, available at Nordstrom. It’s a mix of metallic finishes with some see-through panels, which appear to be relatively understated. I honestly think I might prefer the shoe if it were simply different shades of metallic leather with no clear sections, but it’s the overall Mondrian-inspired look that appeals to me.

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Fun, Functional, Fabulous Fitness

I’m a firm believer in owning fitness wear that enhances performance and comfort by adding a splash of fashion and fun. The drab, baggy sweatpants that often served as go-to gym garb way back when have long since been replaced by colorful leggings, capris, and shorts that offer both functionality and style.

Zella, carried by Nordstrom, is one of my favorite brands. With various styles and reasonable prices, they absolutely hit the mark. One of my favorite pieces, perfect for spin class, is the Zella ‘Live-In’ Slim-Fit Knee Short. The pair below features the newest color, and they’re also available in traditional black. Periodically, Zella introduces new colors and patterns that are available for a limited time, so it makes sense to monitor the Nordstrom site every now and then. If you’re lucky, you can track down hard-to-find colors on eBay and enjoy a bit of cost savings, as well.

 

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Add some color to your workout…okay, a lot of color.

Some people leap out of bed in the morning, excited by the prospect of going to the gym or for a run. Others are not quite so enthusiastic about exercise, propelled instead by the desire to be stronger, fitter, leaner, or simply to be able to eat one more slice of veggie pizza or justify a glass of wine in the middle of the week. But whatever your reason, one fact remains steadfastly true: a workout is way more pleasant when you’re wearing a really fun pair of shoes.

These are all the Gel-Noosa Tri 9 by Asics. Each one is more playful than the next, and when you toss comfort into the mix, it’s a win-win. Lots of retailers carry them, including Nordstrom, Macy’s, Kohl’s, and Lady Foot Locker. You might even score a deal on Amazon or eBay. Prices vary considerably, so it’s a good idea to shop around.

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