Opposites Attract Fun

Two fun-filled weekends called for two different outfits on completely different ends of the spectrum. This is a pretty common dilemma in the college world. With the spring season containing a multitude of day parties, it offers a variety of options when it comes to theme.

For example:

Field Party

A field party calls for an easy, breezy look that guarantees that you will stay cool on a sunny day. Backless was the goal here so that less skin would be encumbered by fabric. I wore my hair down last year, which was extremely hot, so I looked for a trendy way to keep my hair up this year. The perfect pair of rocker boots rounded off the look so that it wouldn’t appear too sweet. Makeup was simple and I incorporated a bright, shimmery pink that complimented the flowers. I used a tutorial by Michelle Phan that I have used before multiple times to great effect.

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Dress: American Threads (Athens), Floral Braid-Ins: Free People/Vida Kush, Boots: Target (past season), Infinity necklace: Agora (Athens), Sunglasses: Target

Carolina Cup

Carolina Cup is a derby held every year in Camden, SC and the look is classic and put-together. And two words: giant hats! Most girls are seen wearing Lilly Pulitzer, but to break the mold I wore an Ann Taylor dress that I honestly don’t often, except when I’m forced to for chapter. My mom had quite the collection of wide-brimmed hats and I chose the biggest she had, which still didn’t come close to most hats in Carolina. I originally planned to wear wedges with horse bits on the toes, but weather did not permit, so I had to opt for rain boots instead. I used OPI Big Apple Red and Bobbi Brown Lip Color in Red to compliment the navy and give it a pop of color.

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Dress: Ann Taylor, Purse: Michael Kors

Madelyn Scarborough is the newest writer at The Clothesline. She currently studies Magazine Journalism and Fashion Merchandising at the University of Georgia, making her the first person here who’s actually qualified! 😛 Welcome, Madelyn! 

The Boy on a Budget

The Conundrum of Being Broke and Stylistically Conscious

I’ve been a long-time silent partner here at The Clothesline, helping with the intricacies of WordPress and various other minor duties behind the scenes. Recently I was asked to lend a male perspective to the site, so I’m coming out of my cage to lend a hand.

Merona suit from Target. (We don’t talk about those days.)

As a recent college graduate who has yet to find steady employment, I’m faced with the challenging task of maintaining a wardrobe that belies my financial instability. Thrift stores and antique malls are options, but finding clothes that are 1) in good taste and 2) fit me can be challenging — especially for someone of my slender (read: bony) build.

In my younger and more vulnerable years, when my idea of a well-fitting suit was based upon early episodes of The X-Files, I did my suit shopping at Target. I landed myself some decently constructed suits, but of course none of them actually fit me. (And I never bothered even trying to get them tailored.) When I finally wised up and realized (among other things) that I was a 36 instead of a 38, I was faced with a problem: Target doesn’t sell 36s.

Enter H&M.

H&M slim-fit navy blazer
& matching trousers.

Like Target, H&M offers suit separates for about $90 per two-piece suit, depending on the cut and material. The main draw for me is that some of them actually fit me. I was first introduced to the company about two years ago, when I wandered into one of their stores and came out with a decently fitting black suit. I wear the jacket on a semi-daily basis, and it still holds up for dressy occasions when I trot out the trousers. The pants started to unravel around the fly a year ago, but some elementary sewing fixed that.

Black, however, is a color best suited to funerals and federal agents. For professional occasions, navy and grey seem to be the most enduring colors, and since conservative style choices tend to land jobs, I’m sticking with H&M for additional suits until I can afford to move on to pricier (and more adventurous) options.

Seersucker Run

J. Ferrar windowpane jacket.

My biggest gripe with H&M’s suits is the low arm-hole placement. It’s not awful, but it’s not great either. A slightly higher-tier solution is JCPenney‘s J. Ferrar line of suits and jackets. While I don’t yet own any of their suits, I have a slim-fit jacket from last year’s collection. It’s my favorite jacket, and it has the best off-the-rack fit of any I’ve owned. Button placement is a bit high, but the construction and fit more than make up for it at that price. (It was about $100 if I remember correctly.) I’d love to give some of their two- and three-piece suits a try, but for now, for financial reasons, I’ll be sticking to H&M. (Although wearing a suit with boots that cost nearly 50% more than the suit is a weird feeling.)

Cheap Designer Label Clothes: What’s not to Like?

Opening February 9th is Target’s newest collaboration: Peter Pillotto for Target. I’ve said before that Peter Pilotto is the future, but this is a groundbreaking collection from a business perspective (for several reasons besides team designers. Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos’, genius). This marks the first time the Peter Pillotto label offers both swimwear and accessories. To celebrate, Target has taken a step in the global direction and is making the collaboration accessible by featuring it Net-a-Porter.

The designs look great — almost like a cross between scuba gear, Jackson Pollock, and the office. No doubt come February, I will find myself perusing Target’s aisles, silently salivating as the sweet smell of design meets affordability.

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But before I get overwhelmed by the ever-beckoning lure of the label, I have to ask myself and my readers. Why do we like these collaborations? Do we actually like them? Every so often with mixed success, Target, H&M, or Kohl’s tantalizes us with these  oh-so classy looking displays; you get to the store, pulse racing, thinking, “Ah! The joy of having nice clothes made by someone who understands!” Then you touch the fabric, and in a moment of dizzy realization and confusion, it’s just glorified polyester with more thought exerted on it. But I go. every. time. And every time, I ask myself, why would I pay $40 for a white shirt from Target?

Am I being too snobby? Looking back at past Target collaborations, they are undoubtedly cool. Even celebrities wear them!

Jason Wu:


In real life:012712-jason-wu-target-launch-600

And Philip Lim:


So essentially, by buying the collaborated label, you sacrifice fabric and tailoring, leaving yourself with design. Is that a worthwhile trade, or am I better off to save up my money and thrift like mad? Then again, maybe my expectations are too high. No one is walking out of Target, fanning their fingers together saying, “YES! Runway gold!” Still, if we know that we aren’t really getting designer, why are we buying for designer? The Man Repeller’s Leandra Medine posited in her article Pilotto for the People that the reason to shop these collaborations is to cash in on the prints (making Pilotto the perfect designer). Now we get Peter Pilotto prints without the Peter Pilotto price tag… I don’t know, but that bathing suit is sure calling my name.