Backyard BBQ to Bellini’s: How to Dress Casual with Style

Julie RhodesJulie Rhodes Fashion & Home hosted “Backyard BBQ to Bellini’s: How to Dress Casual with Style” to shed some light on how to prepare for casual events in the hot summer weather in Houston.  The stylist and presenter, Kelly Flores-New, has built her career as a stylist with a clientele of busy professional women.  In building your own wardrobe, it can be tempting to spend most of your clothing budget on work where “Dress to Impress” really counts. Once that is done, however, your fun time attire can remain without updates for years.  The great news is in focusing on the foundation you have the pieces that allow you to be stylish without an excessive amount of effort that can be a turn off for a busy lifestyle.  Here are some helpful hints from Kelly on choosing wardrobe pieces that make attire planning easy.

Start with a strong foundation

IMG_5190 IMG_5178Neutrals give you the base to move to the next level of your wardrobe selections.  For summer white is right.  Starting with a fun, and good fitting, pair of white jeans.  By pairing it with another classic, an airy blouse you can define your shape without being so hugging that you have to feel conscious on the things you don’t want to highlight.  As an added bonus what may seem basic can be paired in a multitude of ways so you can repurpose them constantly.

Layer to add dimension
IMG_5180 IMG_5186Busy lives normally mean that fashion is not at the very top of priority list.  Once you start with the basics you can add some fun in layers.  A fun and flattering sweater can still keep it basic but add another level of style to your attire.  Jackets are always a great way to go as they can add a pop of color and a level of refinement that is hard to reach with just your wardrobe foundation.  As the most air conditioned city in the world even when it is deadly hot outside, inside may be a different story.  By pulling easy layers together the styling is quick and you pull away looking well-manicured and ready for anything.  Use shoes to really set the tone for your event so you can keep it casual with flats, dress it up with a pair of wedges or notch up the sexy with a pair of peep toes

Don’t be afraid of color and prints 

Blouse with white shortsJust because a color is strong does not make it that it comes and goes with the trends of the season.  By adding a pop of color in pieces that have shapes that work well for your body you ensure that your style is not overpowered by the color but also not boring.


Accessories add the polish 

Print Skirt with black jacketA foundation is a great place to start but not where you finish if you want to have a sophisticated end product.  Even if you have diamond qualities in your attire, making sure you add the finishing touches gets the reaction that you planned carefully even if you throw the outfit together in between kids, work, spouse and a couple of minutes of sleep.

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