As you can tell from this outfit (and closet), Ro’s got that “California cool” style down pat. Her relaxed yet playful dress, urban moto jacket, and functional platforms are roaring with a punchy red lip and some serious swagger.
After a little re-up in my bag and shoe game (details coming soon), I’ve been on the lookout for some extra special jewelry that is both unique and versatile. I’m a huge sucker for accessories of any sort and Etsy is always my go-to spot for artisan jewelry that’s affordable. Here are a few of my favorites that have recently made their way into my repertoire (or will be soon).
1. It’s always hard to find the right kind of bracelet to make my arms look elegant without being overly feminine or “precious”. I’ve found that an open cuff with natural elements like this one from Therese Kuempel is the perfect amount of statement and chic. It matches everything and gives the illusion of a longer arm while maintaining some good strong lines and design.
2. The moment I received my Sewasong necklace, I knew I’d be wearing it all the time. The green color that I originally purchased is sold out, but this version in white is almost better– bold, light, and still very easy to wear with anything.
3. Now, accessories aren’t always super practical and I occasionally make an exception when it’s worth it. This raised diamond ring from xoiasmeniNas isn’t as high maintenance as it looks and it’s minimal shape gives off just a bit of quirk and humor.
4. When it comes to jewelry, something about resin and lucite always strikes me as futuristic and cool. Maybe it’s a nod to my chest of laser-cut plastic earrings from high school or the clear backpack I carried through middle school — either way, this Mod Lucite Collar from Lake Yacht Club is irresistible.
5. Not only have I been loving Therese Kuempel‘s open cuff, but this layered geometric cuff (similar) is simple and clean. The strong lines make it stand out but it’s versatile and effortless enough to wear it everyday.
I’m usually scared to do any drastic tailoring to my clothes, but this dress-turned-crop-top from Glo is seriously genius. Those strong shoulders and simple high waist shorts are like color blocking with a crop. Paired with a healthy dose of statement jewelry and some of the chicest shoes I’ve seen all year and you’ve got yourself a super sleek ensemble.
My regular ‘uniform’ has recently been getting a makeover and I’ve been finding myself more often in draped pants than I do in my skinnies. The ones that I recently received from Old Navy are seriously chic– perfect inseam, great tapering, plus a stretchy waistband never hurt anyone ;) I’ve even worn these dressed up with some wedges and a blouse without looking like I accidentally kept part of my pajamas on– they’re pretty versatile.
I’m even more excited to share this Finders Keepers tank from Adela Mei– if you haven’t heard of them yet, you must check them out! Being a 5’2 shorty, I’m always struggling with fit, cut, and aesthetics that make me look modern and edgy. Adela Mei has that completely covered since they curate to the 5’4 and under fashion gal. That doesn’t mean they stock petites only (I find that petite styles usually aren’t cut very well), but they actually find designer duds that work well for our slightly shorter frame. Also, I’m a huge stickler for measurements and they really go into detail on everything from bust to inseam– IN EVERY SIZE! Loving it and loving their 30% off sale even more. Check them out here.
Don’t be fooled by her small stature or petite frame– Rochelle packs a whole lot of style in for a tiny gal. And I’m not talking mannequin-esque head-to-toe coordination, I’m talking ‘hood inspired, vintage girly, statement chic, and colorful whimsy all piled together for a look that’s 100% fun– 100% Ro. She doesn’t fuss with uncomfortable pieces or impractical trends, she rocks her personality first and foremost (which is more than eclectic)– always with a perfectly lacquered lip. Her wardrobe is filled with color and print and embellishment but her clothes never wear her, they’re simply accessories that complement her playful and creative personality.
Tell us a little about yourself.
Born and raised in the Bay Area, I’ve been living in San Francisco for the last five years and working at Twitter for about a year. I’m lucky; I work in an environment that basically doesn’t have a dress code, so I can pretty much wear whatever I want (pending cooperative weather). I have a creative background, and I approach personal style the same way I approach art – I like things to be colorful, fun, and pretty.
Share a little bit about your personal style.
I’ve been conscious of personal style my entire life, which has been spent almost entirely in the Bay Area. I take offense when people say that San Francisco doesn’t have style; I just think that we have to keep practicality more of a priority than other places. My closet is full of layerable pieces, texture, and prints. Lots and lots of prints. I also don’t tend to wear things that are very low cut or very short, which I think is a symptom of SF weather. I always wear heels though. I can walk for miles and stand for hours in heels. I’m a professional heel-wearer.
Tell us about something in your closet with a story.
I have a black and red floral dress that my grandma made for me when I was (no joke) about ten years old. The dress was designed to have an empire waist, short sleeves and a hem that hit below my knees. Now when I wear it as an adult, it’s a perfect babydoll minidress. Miraculously my shoulders haven’t grown much since then I guess.
Who are some of your style icons?
Katharine Hepburn, Cher Horowitz, Russell Westbrook & Kevin Durant
Name some must- have basics in your closet.
Leather motorcycle jacket, skinny jeans, ankle boots, swing dresses, red lipstick, anything floral. I treat floral prints as a basic.
What are some of the fashion challenges you face?
At five foot one (ahem), my height makes almost everything challenging, but pants are particularly a pain. For jeans, I usually looks for styles that are marketed as “cropped” (26” inseam ideal), and are super tight all the way down to the ankle. If the jeans are designed to make room for the knee, more often than not that knee section hits around my calf and looks weird. Also, real talk, Crew Cuts oxfords fit me better than J. Crew women. Sometimes shopping in the kids section has perks; I have a killer Stella McCartney for Gap Kids jacket in size 12.
What is your style philosophy?
Confidence is key. Most people won’t question what you’re wearing if it’s obvious you’re feeling yourself and your outfit. I also spend most days totally overdressed for the situation – I always rather be overdressed than underdressed. Life is short, dress up. I spend about 70% of each week in lipstick and heels.
Thing to save on/bargain for?
Summer clothes, because summer is non-existent in San Francisco. During heat waves I rotate through my summer dresses, and if I run out then something crazy is happening in the City, because it’s never hot for that long.
What do you splurge on?
Bags and coats, because even if you have a cute outfit on, chances are you need to cover it with a coat, and then all that’s left showing is your bag and coat! #sfproblems Also, makeup. I never, ever cut corners on makeup.
What’s currently on your want list for summer?
I fought against this for a while but I’m giving into Birkenstocks; also, daisy prints, Nike frees, Shorteralls, ripped jeans. I guess I’m feeling the 90’s…
London is hands down my favorite place in the world to shop. I mean– with cutting edge style, a diverse range of price points, and a larger spectrum of sizes, what can I say? If I could swing it, I’d go twice a year to stock up
Of all the fantastic shopping London has to offer, my loyalty lies with the chic simplicity of COS and if you haven’t heard yet… COS has just launched a US website! Yes, they are only carrying up to a size 12 (while the UK still stocks a US 14), but I’ll take what I can get. From their boxy tees to their slouchy dresses, their designs look and feel designer without the pricey brand name cost. Some of my favorite wardrobe staples are from COS and if you purchase from now until June 7th, you can save 25% with the code: HELLOAMERICA. Here are five of the styles I’m loving now:
1. My favorite boxy blouse. I’ve heard time and time again that if you’re top heavy, you shouldn’t wear oversize tops. I don’t listen. This melange shirt is on heavy rotation in my closet and I love the ease and sophistication it carries with little to no accessories.
2. Not your average collar necklace. Something makes me feel extra fancy when I button up my shirts all the way, and my favorite way to set it off is with a clean collar necklace. I love this one because of the sporty jersey wrap and structured shape.
3. A clutch like marble. I’ve been feeling some feelings when it comes to the marbled look. From amazing nail art to shoes I’m currently lusting over, I just love the idea of carrying a work of art like this Reversible Jacquard Clutch.
4. The go-to cardigan. Even with this San Francisco heat, I know I’ll be searching for more layers in a few weeks and this Double-breasted Cardigan looks like the perfect thin layer that will work with everything.
5. When simple meets chic.These shoes are the kind of no-frills elegance that the designers at COS do best– minimal, basic, but absolutely stunning.
It has been overwhelmingly hot in San Francisco and because of that, I was finally able to break out some open toed shoes with a chambray top I received as part of the Rock Your Blues blogger event at Old Navy! Also, another rarity to see on me are sunglasses, although I absolutely love these two-toned vintage shades from a little shop in Baltimore. I tend to have a overly round face and flat nose for sunnies, but I’m happy to break these out any chance I get.
I’ve been into the head-to-toe solids and felt it was appropriate to rock a Canadian tuxedo for a casual weekend in the East Bay. This Avant Gardener tote is basically the only non-leather, non-black bag I carry as a “handbag” but its just so darn funny and gives my outfit a little personality.
What melt-your-face pieces have you been pulling out of your closet in this heat?
Very few people have the confidence and bod to pull off a full floral jumpsuit and Glo is definitely one of them. Such a ‘wow’ piece, right? I love Glo’s new chic pixie haircut and how it balances with the romance and bohemian feel of this flowy jumper. The print itself is actually quite soft and watercolor-esque but still graphic and super sexy– especially on those curves.
The Reformation is one of those stores I would loveto shop but they just don’t carry the sizing…yet (Reformation– if you’re listening, get working on some plus sizes, please!) And let’s just talk about this look for a sec– it’s insanely good and I’m crying a little inside that they don’t carry my size. Jumpsuits similar to these are on regular rotation at this hip online shop and I hope to someday snag a piece that looks as good on me as this one does on Glo
I love a weekend look that hits on all of my favorite aesthetics: bold, effortless, and a little quirky. This Proenza Schouler shirt has been high on my wishlist for months so when it finally went on sale, I had to snag it. It’s light, comfy, and adds some serious graphic style to any look.
As I mentioned before, I’m also a huge Freda Salvador fanatic. These Wit Flats are edgy, sleek, and show off (what I believe to be) one of the sexiest parts of a body– the ankles. Aren’t those cutouts killer? And I don’t even have to spell it out with the necklace. It should be blatantly clear why I had to impulsively buy it in London almost 5 years ago– it has become a sort of Sandy Warhol branded accessory in my wardrobe.