Dear Nikki Bella,
You are a Queen and I love you. XoXo, Kiki.
It's taken me over a week to pick my jaw up off the floor after seeing what the longest reigning Diva's Champion rocked at the 2017 MMVA's, so please forgive the late review. I believe she tweeted something about wanting to wear something "sexy and different" before the event took place, and oh slay my life did she ever deliver in this Alessandra Rich sheer gown. With it's extremely low plunge and gold embellishments, she was turning heads all down the red carpet. I adore the attached choker that featured an eye catching circular pendent, which just so happened to match the blinged out pendent at her waist, bunching the the material together. Everything else about the outfit was kept very simple, which meant the dress didn't need to fight for attention. Simple, black open toe heels, straight hair, and a pop of color (red, of course) on her lips seals the deal. You need confidence to rock an outfit like this, or maybe I should say, you need to have no fear.... Well, she is Fearless Nikki for a reason.
Brie: I have to chime in with two thoughts :). First, the silhouette of this dress was giving me serious JLo vibes! ( see 2000 Grammy's Versace and 2017 Latin Billboards). It channeled Jennifer's risk-taking sensibilities and added a dash of Nikki's trademark glamour. Second, with all the drama and complexity of the dress, I massively applaud Nikki's choice of minimalist peep-toe pumps. It was brilliant! They were strong and structured enough to anchor all the sheer fabric, but didn't distract from the dress even an tad. Girlfriend got this one precisely right!
One tricky aspect of wearing the super-casual throw-and-go looks that tend to define a significant portion of summer dressing is that they need a pinch of je ne se quoi, elan, an exclamation point, something that anchors the look firmly in the "style" category, rather than the "something I just threw on" file. The lack thereof was what my praise got hung up on with this warm-weather look from Lana, so I've re-imagined a trio of iterations of this straightforward combo with a pinch more intentional panache. The canvas for the look is pretty clear: tee+shorts. So, basically, it's a check your drawers/closet/armoire kind of thing. Go with a cropped tee if you're feeling it, a boxy version with a feminine detail - like this flutter-sleeved piece - or a simple, curve-kissing knit. Cut-off denim, a la Lana, works on the bottom, but you can also make a more polished statement via chinos or a specifically summery fabric (think seersucker, linen, gingham). Non-shorts-friendly environment? No problem! Full-length denim or chinos lend themselves to these looks quite nicely. Classic color stories like all black or all white are perpetually fab, but also consider au courant shades of blush (the newest neutral! ;)), nude and olive in your mix. Once you have your canvas chosen, it's all about the spark. With such a simple background, you can be a little extra daring! Do you love the toughness of camo or wild-at-heart leopard but shy away from wearing it ordinarily? Go for it here, via a belt or bag (or even sneakers ;)). Always wanted to try pairing red and pink? Add a touch to blush - the risky color combo will be tempered by earth-toned or denim shorts. Other edgy color choices include lemon, canteloupe, and kelly. Try some 80's-tinged candy-hued combos with bright turquoise or lavender. Alternatively, toughen the girly pink up with some studs. Black monochrome lends itself to just about anything (camo = yep, leopard = yep, red=yep, studs=yep). Then again, how about getting some mileage out of one of the myriad of scarves you've collected over the years and only occasionally manage to wear? Knot it at your waist (or do a big, bold couture-esque bow :)). Alternatively, I love the idea of tying it at your neck, but turning the knot to the back. You get the look of a choker in front, but floaty streamers trailing behind you (the effect is particularly dramatic with lengthy oblong scarves or oversize squares). Complete the laidback vibe of the look with coordinating sneakers. (Classic or casual flats - think espadrilles or ballets - are also 100% acceptable). Happy styling, loves!
We're kicking things off with a little throwback Maryse, a one-off snippet she released in December. Seriously, though, how incredible is this shot? Her gray marble-pattern bodycon dress hugs all the right curves. Even more impressive though is her fashion-forward sleeveless trench in daring clear fabric. This looks so aamazing! It's dramatic and unique and the couture vibe totally makes my knees weak! It's so chic and fashion-forward that even the ordinary black backdrop can't downgrade it. Maryse's killer pose makes it just that much memorable! Next, we got a shot of Maryse's casually fierce side. She paired a tie-front white tank with distressed gray jeans (LOVE that color!) and insanely hot lace-up OTK flat (!) (Really) boots. This is how laidback glamour is done. Her sleek cool-girl pony is utter perfection. And for accessories? What else but oversize sunnies! Next up is a return of the emerald sequin dress she wore for NYE 2016. This fantastic confection just happens to be Balmain x H&M. Maryse skips the wide belt and minimizes the impact of the plunge-front with a coquettish lace cami, which was a nice twist from the cami-free original styling. She pulls this somewhat more demure look off just as well as the original one. She went hard for green, accessorizing the piece with matching earrings and bracelets and looks like she's having a blast wearing it. Sure makes me want to give emerald sequins a try :). The strong-shoulder silhouette of her next mini-dress (by Zhivago (id by fashionofthedivas)) would be at home in a Balmain collection. The piece blends a touch of 80's retro with a mod cutout-choker silhouette. The plunge-front keeps the drama highkey. I love how Maryse lightened the look u by styling the dress with delicate strappy gold sandals. Her smooth pony is polished and fits perfectly with the almost futuristic vibe. She returns to casual style with her next outfit, a combination created for movie nigh which paired distressed skinny jeans with a graphic tee. She gave the tough-urban pairing a nice twist by topping it with a statement studded floral-print jacket, which brings a dark feminine energy to the look. A jacket this fab would be an exclamation point even against a far simpler canvas While I could have done without the heaviness of her mid-calf boots, I love the stripped-down vibe of her YSL bag.
Maria was all about the black with this little pleated number. The look demonstrates the minimalist, refined side of her style. Black hosiery enhances the professional vibe. Of course, she is Maria so she can't be too prim :) - she rounds off the look with fringed knee boots. Her next outfit is a complete about-face from polished and demure: she goes for arty grunge and nails it in this pairing of a graphic tee with cropped, distressed denim. I love how she uses the knot to define the length of the tee and thereby create a defined visual waist for the look. The details also really 'make' this look - her masculine fedora and leopard booties gives this look devil-may-care rocker attitude. The balance is perfect here - it's fun and sassy, but not over the top. Brava. I'm equally jazzed about her next look, a combo I would wear in a heartbeat: skinny jeans topped with a slouchy sequined tee (half-tucked) and topped with a laidback jacket? Pitter-patter my stylish heart! A little glam, a little rocker and I am a lot in love. Maria finished this look with ankle booties, since she put it together in early spring. For right now, ditch the jacket, add a belt and complete the ensemble with studded sandals. Ok, I def have to go excavate my sequined tanks now. PS The pin-straight hair is so sleek and fab! Ogh. Her next outfit catches a similar contrast with a less rocker vibe, as she combines a red bodycon dress with her staple leather jacket. Note: this is why a classic piece like this one is such a good investment; Maria has worn this jacket a gazillion times. Every single time, it looks stellar and makes the outfit jam. When you amortize the money spent over the number of wears, a piece like this is well worth a little extra expenditure, especially since you'll have it for years. Maria will be able to wear this piece in a decade and it will still be in style. That's what classic does. A silver statement necklace and ivory platform pumps finish this look. I couldn't resist sharing this snap Maria posted from her engagement photo session with Mike. How gorgeous is that snow scene!? And don't you love that half-crazy drama play of this gorgeous girl standing on the train tracks in her stunning dress? There's an underlying suggestion of risk-taking and partnership conveyed by the scene and poses that adds layers of meaning to the snap. I can't help but appreciate Maria's vision. Next up is a sequined emerald dress worn for an event in March. We only see Maria work with this mesmerizing jewel tone shade on occasion, but I go wild over it every time. It's super gorge, especially with the red tones in her hair! She gets fierce points for being ahead of the curve on the wide-belt trend here. The styling finished off with simple chunky-heeled platform pumps. I'm in for the chunky heel, but I wish she had done it with a sandal, or gone with a pointy toe pump here to parallel the au courant vibe of her belt.
Still got more Lana-fashion for ya! This Queen's a style machine!
At Fastlane, she rocked a velvet double-breasted dress, which she paired with shimmering, futuristic OTK's. The double-breasted style can get overwhelming if it's paired with a lot of other elements, so I love this design's simplicity. The silver OTKs are edgy and probably wouldn't have been my first choice to pair with this dress, but I think Lana pulls it off. The coordinating choker helps and her audacity and confidence carry it through. That being said, I love those boots in an of themselves and would ADORE them in an editorial context. Their unflinching Space-Age beauty would be flawless in a galactic setting.
She was back to red for this next look, a lovely cranberry bodycon dress. She get props for the mid length, as well as for pairing it with one of my favorite contrasting-genre toppers: a tough leather jacket. The red and black combo works as fabulously as it always does - #IconicForAReason. Next, she gives us two looks with this cold-shoulder choker-style top by Topshop. She makes it travel-ready in look #1 by pairing it with flared leggings and a fur duster. I really enjoy how Lana's style is rarely boring; even when she's being practical and comfortable, she still manages to inject panache and flair into her style. This statement duster really puts the exclamation point on this monochrome look. Outfit #2 pairs the tops with printed high-waisted pants from House of CB. I love the laidback -but thoroughly chic! - vibe of this look. The print is interesting but not busy and harmonizes nicely with the simple trendiness of her top. An oversize watch finishes the look with a hint of precisely (and perfectly) chosen sophistication.
Lana had a little love affair with burgundy during the winter and spring. She kicked it off with a cropped chunky ribbed sweater from Topshop paired with leggings and Lola Shoetique velvet OTKs. This monochromatic look works nicely because of the proportion-play: the boxy top, set above the sleek leggings and boots comes off stylish and sexy. The textural combination enhances the look: wooly, nappy knit with luxe, plush velvet adds visual interest. These are two key elements of a monochrome look; because the color story is so highly edited, the fierceness has to come from other aspects of the styling. Her second turn in deep wine came in this Missguided jumpsuit. The drapey front gives me a bit of a 90's vibe but the rest of the silhouette is streamlined and totally right now. I love her addition of a black choke, which puts a cool-girl exclamation point on the look. She doubles down on that with her Adidas sneakers. I'm not sure those would for everyone, but I think Lana handles the fusion of velvet and sport nicel,y, especially with her Vuitton knapsack thrown into the mix. I also love her candy-pink lip shade - it's gorge without being distracting or trying to take precedence in the look. Last in the line-up of burgundy is this amaaaazing faux fur coat that Lana styled over a cutout bodysuit, paired with lace-up heels. This whole outfit is ravishing! (Guess she's not called the "Ravishing Russian" for nothin' :)). It's seductive and glamorous and modern all at once, especially due to Lana's fabulous pose in front of the open car door! Oggh...I'm slayed. Can we have a whole 'shoot like this? I am willing to beg, if it will make a difference ;).
I loved Maria's quirky interpretation of the track pant craze the instant I saw it! She didn't try to make it excessively sporty, but went for a laidback-femme or sweet cool-girl vibe by pairing it with lace. It's a nice twist on a silhouette that can channel everything from jock to grunge to 'it girl". If you're aching to give this a try, there a couple of key points to keep in mind. First, regarding the pants themselves: look for either a loose, but tailored pair (think of a suiting pant style, but way more laidback) or a tapered silhouette. Both lend themselves to breezy chic quite readily. Avoid the ultra-baggy silhouettes at all costs. They're impossible to style unless you actually are Rihanna. Cuffed or non-cuffed both work, so - up to you! Also segue far around velour. Stay with streamlined satin-y or matte smooth fabrics. Knit versions will work, but only if they're of the polished variety. Hem length is important: a hint of slouch at the top of your foot = yes. Leaving no footprints because you're walking on your pant legs = no. Second, regarding your top: the squared-out silhouette with a shorter length that echoes the spirit of Maria's choice is what's crucial. You want something that hits close to the pants' waist because... WAIST! It's important. You need one here. These pants can be tricky to elevate and you are only one lengthy broken-in hoodie away from "I'm still so hungover". You don't want that; don't do that to you. You can play with a boxy crop top, a blouse-style piece, even an open-knit sweater over a tank, as long as it has the requisite wider+shorter shape. Finish the look a la Rosie Huntington-Whitely with ankle strap sandals, or inject some fierceness with a kitten heel. Or play the athleisure vibe to the hilt and conclude the styling with a coordinating sneaker. And what if: "uumm Brie - I don't have any track pants!"? You....don't....have...*faints*. Just kidding. NBD. Give this styling a try with straight, drawstring cargo pants (fish them out of your nearest 90's clothing refuge, be that your Mom's drawer, the back of your closet, aunt's attic or vintage store.). The drawstring is important on non-actual track pants to give that chill vibe. Alternatively, ditch said vibe and go with polished trousers of the suiting ilk. There'll be a pair somewhere that has the slightly slouchy or tapered silhouette you need. Promise. Excavate a little :). Bonus points if they're in a fabric with a sheen (double bonus points for tuxedo or similar stripes at the side), but any material with sufficient drape will work. Because you've done polished on the bottom, you can now do the whole carefree/broken-in/easy-breezy vibe on top. Try a baseball tee, or your favorite worn-but-not-forgotten solid standby. Skip over form-fitting and reach for drape-y. Forget the whole "cropped" thing; longer is fine. Add a half-tuck of some sort: frontal, side-al. Or be all daring and do a full tuck ;). Get your sporty on via accessories: sneakers and a baseball cap. Happy styling, loves!
And speaking of Maria ;) ...Trust her to create a super-fun look that embraces athleisure and still gets sequins involved! PS I love it! And fortunately there's no need to kick the glitter habit :) It translates just as nicely to sporty aesthetics as to luxe and glam-grunge ones. Maria - with her typical bold fashion genius- went for a silver Rolling Stones-logo'd tee. If you're in for that, rock it! If that much flair sends you running to hide under the bed (oh hey there! :)), play it the way I would: with practical black. (Not that anything sequined is ever reeeeaaalllly practical. That's why we own said sequined somethings. Duh.). It's a tad less sassy, but it's also more versatile :). To create the sport vibe, you're looking for a tee or a tank. Avoid narrow-strapped cami-style pieces. Racerback is 100% in, if ya got it! If you don't yet have an all-over sequined piece, choose something with sequin embellishment (metallic, in full or in part, is a totally allowable option as well). Pair with your fave leggings (def consider a track-striped version!) and coordinating sneakers. Top with a lightweight bomber for casual cool. Alternatively, ditch the bomber for a classic neutral tee (ok, hot pink works too ;)). Layer your dark sequined tank over the top for an urban 80's-meets-now vibe. Feel free to enhance that with black denim (distressing = do-able) instead of leggings. Still sneakers on the bottom for that whole sporty sitch.(But you don't actually have to sprint anywhere if you don't want to. I do recommend dancing though :)) Happy styling, loves!
Wrestling fans were surprised last night to see Maria Kanellis make her return to the WWE! Along with her husband, Mike, the duo are now members of the Blue Brand and will be appearing on Smackdown Live. Maria was last seen in a WWE ring back in 2010, but has been very busy since then, appearing in numerous wrestling companies around the world, as well as continuing her education. While she may or may not be stepping back in between the ropes, we know that no matter what, she's going to one to watch on the fashion front. xoxo
First, I apologize for the extreme tardiness of this review...and I take back every griping thing I ever said about Joey Styles. Then again, he gets paid to get the pics up and I don't earn zip from this labor of love I fit in around life, animals and a real job. So, actually, I don't take back anything I said about him after all :). Second, I'm laughing at myself as I'm posting this review. You would never believe how many times I've re-done the collages because my placements keep changing as I analyze and weight the looks. This is HARD, babes! Every year, so many ladies come out here and slay and somehow I have to distill it all into some kind of order. It's cray! And it's also fun. And I'm usually hella proud of the list when I finally get done, probably because I fight so hard to make it accurate and justify each placing. As always, I feel the need to mention that I madly adore each of these divas and root for all of them to rock the ravishing red lane of fame. I love it every time they do! That being said...
Welcome to the place where wrestling & fashion join hands. #BeInspired #LoveFashion Let the Fierce be with you! ;) Peace & Glitter!
Brie: shoe-lover :) fashion-lover and generally glamorous semi-dork