Though it may very well still be Winter, there is plenty of blue skies and bright sunshine happening outside my window which gets me dreaming about all of the fun events coming up in Spring. Of course anyone who has had to bundle up to run errands or hustle to work might agree that long coats and numerous layers have become stifling. Many alternative fashion brands are ushering out their latest offerings, where sleeves and hemlines are getting shorted to show off skin that hasn’t seen sunlight in a while and soak up those warming rays. A great example of a versatile garment is the Christina Dress by Pinup Couture, exquisitely constructed from comfortable stretch sateen that is tailored with a collared cross-over bustline and a double kick pleat for modesty and movement in the back. It can be worn with the matching belt [sold separately] and comes in three other vibrant colors besides black, each of which have been paired with accessories in the guide below.
A black dress is deceptively basic, as it can be transformed to fit any social situation while easily blending into a work environment. When done with the daily grind, though, one usually wants to unwind and sometimes that is easier without having to make a stop at home to change. Instead, slip into the restroom and dive into Iron Fist’s Love Me Night Overnight Bag, a stylish way to store a few extra things for those who live spontaneously. Trade in those dull orthopedic flats for a pair of OMG pumps, an open toe platform with black and white graphic rose print accented with a gleaming skull medallion, and then slip on a beaded white Corsage Belt by LAFrock for a touch of vintage glamour. Printed with vintage images of skeletal hands framed in silver, the Anatomy Earrings have plenty of tiny details that reflect the tone of the outfit. The simplicity of a Rose Necklace allows for other accessories to be the center of attention, such as a Cocktail Ring that has frosty roses etched against a black background, or a flexible Skeleton Bracelet by Vivienne Westwood that secures sterling silver bones around your wrist. Get creative by pairing your favorite hair pieces together – here I layered Kreepsville 666’s famous Skeleton Hand Hair Clip with a simple Black Silk Rose for height and texture.
The purple version of this dress will have every body size feeling radiant and royal, which is reflected in the styling by coordinating Iron Fist’s Havana Breeze print in an open toe platform wedge and trendy wallet that are both adorned with a silver studded bow, purple roses and colorful tattoo style swallows. An elastic belt is a great way to create that ‘hourglass’ figure which is commonly associated with pinup bombshells, and that can be accomplished with one made of faux red leather and accented with silver buckles. Bring the funky print to life by surrounding your neck with a silver Double Swallow Pendent, draping Victorian style Red Rose Cameo Earrings from your lobes, and securing a wreath of sterling silver Wild Roses around your wrist. Finally, treat yourself to a little sparkle by way of a Large Bow Ring encrusted with irridescent rhinestones, and a Gatsby Hair Fascinator, a purple cocktail hat fitted with white netting and an elegant swarovsky crystal flower brooch.
Creating an outfit infused with flamboyance can be done by taking the teal colorway and setting it up with Iron Fist’s Sugar Hiccup heels, a lush black platform heel that has sparkling sequin skulls dancing on the outside, while a bright teal leopard print peeks out from the interior. For a night of rock ‘n’ roll, one would be wise to take along the Cruiser Tote by Lux de Ville, a beautiful black vinyl bag that has tuck and roll detailing along with a white chevron design and plenty of storage for your personal items. The silver rhinestone oval of this black Sequin Stretch Belt will help give the illusion of a drawn in waist, while the Black Dahlia earrings by Tarina Tarantino gives a bit of an art deco vibe. Hanging from an antique silver plated chain is the Peacock Cameo, the ink black negative space interrupted with the delicately carved details of this tropical teal bird. Commonly associated with Victorian mourning, this all black Rose Cameo Ring is versatile enough to wear for a number of occasion, as are the curves and curls of this Feather Bracelet, which make it seem as though it was plucked from some mythical silver bird. As if there wasn’t enough exotic animals referenced, clip a zebra print Gerbera Daisy into any hairstyle and you are prepared for an unforgettable evening.
Last but certainly not least, the rust version of the Christina Dress is what I would describe as close to the shade of petina one might find on a rustic rat rod. Flexing my amazing Photo Shop skills, here one can see the drastic difference a belt can make to the silhouette, the triangular cut-outs of this Black Leather Corset Belt helping to create visual interest. Admittedly an admirer of this Iron Fist t-strap pump because it coincides with my stage name, Lovelace is a peep toe platform that adds contrast to the dress with black flowers, hearts and skull-headed butterflies imprinted in a lace pattern across a creamy green background, accented with a matching bow and a golden interior. The neutral tones and flat black vinyl accents of the Baby Lou Tattoo Handbag makes it a great accessory that is versatile without overtaking your outfit. One again using the shoes to coordinate body adornments, I thought these Betsey Johnson Filigree Heart Earrings were a nice translation of those found on the shoe, the black glass designs studded with white crystals for a bit of extra shine. Mixing white and yellow gold, this Swallowtail Butterfly Pendant has beautiful and delicate details that will make it stand out among your other jewelry pieces. Simple yet elegant, the Shell Cameo Ring is hand-carved from the Cassis Rufia shell and laid inside a yellow gold frame across a bed of rusted coral. Whether you want to wear one or stack them up, the Double Skull Head Bangle is made from yellow gold, the twisted bracelet wrapping around the wrist and ending in grinning skulls. It should go without saying that I am fond of putting things in the hair, which is where bright, bold Butterfly Hairclips and Zebra Bone Hair Bows come in handy, each offering security for any ‘do you decide to rock.