The dress+OTKs combination has become a classic look. It was a famous staple of LayCool, but has also been seen on Summer, Maryse and Renee. We're taking the acronym concept one step further and making the pairing specifically an LBD with OTKs. It's hard to get more iconic than the little black dress. Its legacy was cemented by Holly Golightly in Givenchy, wandering down 5th Avenue at dawn in the 60's, but it was born decades before: in the 20's, when Chanel introduced it to the world. It is as versatile and chic now as it was then. Simplicity is a hallmark of the LBD, but within that simplicity there can be a variety of silhouettes. Maryse's pairing includes a sheath, a curve-kissing style, while Renee's paisley piece (re-imagined in black for our purposes) is of the swing (also called "trapeze") genre - a floaty, flowing design that looks best at knee length or slightly above. (In between these two silhouettes falls the shift dress, recognizable because of a slightly A-line or parallelogram shape). Any of these three can be styled with OTKs, although shifts are the trickiest and tend to work best when designed in supple fabrics such as jersey knits, as opposed to stiffer cloths, such as taffeta. So, step one in our alphabet soup is to pick your LBD of choice. If you're feeling fierce, go for a sheath, like Maryse. If boho or hipster is more your mood, try a swing style a la Renee. Then add your OTKs. Maryse is spot on trend with her burgundy suede pair; if you've got some, rock them! Other colored options include navy, camel and gray. Of course, you can always do black! :) The whippy swing dress can take a more casual pair, so feel free to reach for OTK flats if that's your jazz. For cooler days, top this look with a jacket. Maryse went with a gorgeous military version (my similar is here), which adds both trendiness and amperage. Consider a classic denim jacket or cropped blazer as an alternative. To keep the free-spirited vibe of Renee's swing style, top it with a faux fur piece. Other options include a drape-y trench or duster. You're looking for a boxy or cocoon fit, as opposed to something with princess seams or an hourglass shape. The more casual cuts suit the chill vibe of the silhouette. A long, casual cardi could probably be pressed into service if need be, too. Which brings to another important point: coat length is crucial! While sheaths work flawlessly with almost every style, including cropped, the swing requires a topper equal or longer than it's hem. Shorter pieces will either look awkwardly short, or create an odd waist. Accessories can be as pared down as Maryse's addition of sunglasses, or include a choker like Renee's (assuming your dress doesn't come with one helpfully included as part of the design ;)). Alternatively, do a hat: go with a hot-right-now (and so hot on Renee!) porkpie or a 70's-leaning floppy brim. If you're feeling that hat thing, but also the sheath thing, consider topping it all with a newsboy cap. I hope this inspires you to wear out some acronyms ASAP! Happy styling, loves!
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Brie: shoe-lover :) fashion-lover and generally glamorous semi-dork