Dressed Up Basics

 COAT: MAX STUDIO  [SIMILAR]  / SWEATER:  MICHAEL KORS [SIMILAR]  / NECKLACE: FOREVER 21  [SIMILAR]  / CROPPED JEANS:  FOREVER 21  / HEELS: BANANA REPUBLIC  [SIMILAR]  / FRINGE BAG:  REBECCA MINKOFF  / SUNGLASSES: TAHARI  [similar]  / LIPSTICK:  TOM FORD CHERRY LUSH  

COAT: MAX STUDIO [SIMILAR] / SWEATER: MICHAEL KORS [SIMILAR] / NECKLACE: FOREVER 21 [SIMILAR] / CROPPED JEANS: FOREVER 21 / HEELS: BANANA REPUBLIC [SIMILAR] / FRINGE BAG: REBECCA MINKOFF / SUNGLASSES: TAHARI [similar] / LIPSTICK: TOM FORD CHERRY LUSH 

I have always been drawn to the ease of dressing up basics, and the beauty of the moment we live in, is that a pair of heels no longer needs to accompany a dress. Audrey Hepburn is one of my style icons, particularly when she played the role of Jo Stockton in Funny Face (1957) with her all-black ensembles, great outerwear, and dainty shoes. That combination is what my mind goes to when I am too frazzled to "decide" on an outfit. 

We were heading into Georgetown for Sunday mass and a picnic lunch, so I wanted to wear something classic enough for church, and comfortable enough to chase after my daughter and niece. A simple grey sweater is such a versatile piece, and I love this all-cotton Michael Kors one I found at TJ Maxx. It has a rounded hem and covers my be-hind, which I am currently enjoying right now, especially because I have a penchant for slim fit bottoms; a tunic-length top creates balance. 

TAHARI SUNGLASSES / RED LIP / GREY SWEATER / CHUNKY NECKLACE / NICOLEMCARUSO.COM
STRAPPY HEELS / CROPPED JEANS / PLAID COAT / RED FRING REBECCA MINKOFF BAG / NICOLEMCARUSO.COM

The way to dress up basics is with the accessories: shoes, bag, jewelry, and outerwear. Juxtaposing evening-ready pieces with basics instantly makes them look elegant and ladylike, but not stuffy. With my simple sweater and cropped (faded) jeans, I strapped on my pointy mary jane heels, threw on this cool plaid swing coat, paired with this Rebecca Minkoff red suede fringe bag, chunky silver necklace, and cherry-red lip.  

RED FRINGE SUEDE BAG / PLAID COAT / REBECCA MINKOFF BAG / NICOLEMCARUSO.COM
PLAID COAT / RED LIP / NUDE SUNGLASSES / REBECCA MINKOFF SUEDE FRINGE BAG / NICOLEMCARUSO.COM

Though this outfit was a bit dressed up, I was able to swap my heels for boots to make a day of walking Georgetown much more comfortable. We picnicked in the grass, and walked the whole water front. It was a perfect Sunday.

HERE ARE SOME OTHER AWESOME PLAID COATS TO THROW OVER YOUR BASICS THIS SEASON: 

SHOP THE OUTFIT HERE: 

Nicole M. Caruso

I was born in Manhattan to two native New Yorkers who met working in the Garment Industry. Fashion was the family business. Suburban Connecticut is where I grew up and often daydreamed about someday attending New York Fashion Week.

When I was in college studying Communication & Media, I met the man of my dreams. We married nearly one year after our first date, and have been adventuring together ever since. While we moved around the country for his job, I freelanced as a makeup artist, worked in retail, and blogged about style & beauty as a creative outlet. 

Moving back to New York led to serendipitously working for two major fashion houses, where I learned the ins and outs of the industry, and attended Fashion Week both backstage and in the tents. Soon after, Verily Magazine brought me on as Beauty Editor, which was my dream job. It combined all of my passions and hobbies into one, and granted me a deeper understanding of print and digital media. One year after that, I had my daughter and experienced true fulfillment in motherhood. 

Everywhere I have traveled, I have met incredible women who inspired me to be the best version of myself; to wake up every day feeling confident and ready to Carpe Diem. I want to inspire women to explore their feminine genius by investing in their self-worth. This lifestyle blog is the place where I can share my worldview, my experiences, and my tips and tricks to live a more fulfilling life, which include expert style and beauty advice, tips for healthy living, and reflections on marriage and motherhood.