This Week's Fashion News and Advice:

Special: Festive Outfit Ideas For the Whole Family!

The holidays provide tons of opportunities for you and your family to dress up and celebrate the season. One of the most fun preparations is the family portrait photography session. This year, gather your family, and a few fun holiday props, and take a photo for a holiday greeting card that your friends and family will be sure to remember for years to come. While formal holiday portraits will always be a fun tradition, consider loosening up a bit this year and creating a less formal, more fun photograph. Select wardrobe elements for each member of your family to create holiday pictures that are sure to delight your relatives while earning a spot on your mantel as well.

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Dress Dad up in a fun, and festive, holiday necktie. One that plays music, like this one, is guaranteed to elicit genuine smiles and laughs from the rest of the family as the photographer snaps away at the camera. A classic white button down shirt is the perfect backdrop for a novelty tie. Stay super casual with your favorite pair of jeans, or dress up just a bit with a pair of khaki pants. For an added bit of extra holiday flair, give Dad a fuzzy Santa Claus hat to top off his outfit.

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Make Mom the merriest elf of the season with this super stylish sweater dress. Add a pair of black (or red!) tights or leggings to add a bit of warmth to the dress. Of course all elves have to wear appropriate footwear, so be sure to choose carefully. A pair of fashionable ankle boots in black are the perfect pair of shoes for an attractive elf. While elves that call the North Pole home tend to wear bells for a bit of bling, try bangle bracelets or a pair of earrings that sparkle and shine.

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Let your little one’s natural cuteness and personality shine through by picking an outfit that fits with Mom and Dad. Choose a keepsake dress that your daughter will be able to remember fondly for years to come. This dress and legging combination captures the spirit of the season and fits perfectly with Mom and Dad’s ensembles. Accessorize your daughter’s outfit with a headband or small stud earrings if your little girl has her ears pierced.

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A family portrait is not complete without your favorite furry friend, after all pets are members of the family as well. Find a fun costume for your puppy at retailers such as Party City. A reindeer costume is the perfect addition to your holiday photograph since somebody has to pull the sleigh!

There is no such thing as a “perfect” holiday portrait for holiday cards and greetings. However, it is entirely possible to have tons of fun while capturing pictures that are sure to become treasured family memories. A few well-chosen wardrobe pieces help you and your family create festively themed portraits that are sure to help spread joy to your relatives and loved ones this holiday season.

 

Breanne is a recent college graduate, blogger, and fashion aficionada.  You can find her over at her blog, Proper & Pink!

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A Good Night’s Sleep Essential For Beauty

If you have ever wondered why sleeping beauty was called so, here is the answer. Research has it that it is the quality of sleep that dictates how fresh and pretty you are going to look the next day. So, for some time, stop relying on your cosmetics and pay more attention to your sleep routine.

Are you getting at least 8 hours of sleep every day? That’s good. Are you losing sleep over some kind of stress? In case you are, chances are that you would have developed dark circles under your eyes. Less sleep means less rest, which in turn means that you are not giving requisite time to your skin and other organs to rejuvenate. Proper bedding makes your skin glow and hence those who sleep fine do not complain much about wrinkles or dull skin.

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If you have ever woken up with a skin crease or a skin line on your face, it is time to know that the bedding that you are using is not right. What! Yes, you read that right. The bed and the pillow that you sleep on to a large extent are responsible for how your skin feels in the morning. If you sleep on regular cotton sheets, your skin tends to lose its moisture and hence looks dry and dull.

This kind of bedding also tugs with your hair and takes away its sheen. You don’t have to regret so much just because of sleeping on a regular cotton pillow or bed sheet, do you? That is why, it is highly recommended to switch to organic silk bedding as soon as it is possible. Bedding that is made out of bamboo and silk is just perfect for your health as well as for your skin.

Take the benefits of silk, for example, and you will be more than pleasantly surprised. It has been proven that sleeping on silk reduces as well as slows down wrinkles from ruining your skin. That is probably the reason why Marilyn Monroe slept on silk sheets wearing nothing but Chanel 5. That said, even for your hair, silk bedding does a lot of good.

Since silk does not tug with your hair, your beautiful tresses do not break or grow rough. It therefore makes a lot of sense to sleep on comfortable organic pillows. Those harsh regular cotton sheets and pillows are not at all worth a good night’s sleep. It is ironical how the majority of people sleep on cotton sheets.

One benefit of sleeping on silk is that it is hypoallergenic in nature and hence it prevents you from asthmatic attacks as well as from allergies of skin. If you are irritated because of dust causing you to sneeze, organic silk pillows are what you must look for.

All in all, a restful sleep requires that you not just sleep in a comfortable position but also on comfortable natural bedding.

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Strong Female Role Model Costumes For Halloween

We’re lucky to live in an age where many of the women we see in the media who are meant to serve as role models actually do that. We have women in every type of career and in every kind of office who serve as inspiration for what any one of us can achieve.

If you’re looking to emulate an inspirational woman this Halloween check out the vast selection of women’s Halloween costumes online – these are so many to choose from you won’t be able to decide! Luckily, we’re here to help with some of our favourite empowering women’s halloween costume ideas:

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Audrey Hepburn

When you think of Audrey Hepburn it’s hard to go past the classic little black dress, bangs pushed back, Wayfarer sunglasses and big pearl necklace. Her look in Breakfast at Tiffany’s is now so iconic that you could go to any party looking like this inspirational actress and philanthropist  and be instantly recognised. All you need is a killer black dress and you’re ready to take the world by storm.

Beyonce

Beyonce has long reigned as the Queen of Pop and R&B. She is a mogul; with five albums, 17 Grammys, two fashion lines, numerous charitable ventures and mentions on both the 2013 and 2014 in Time Magazine’s “most influential people in the world” list. A fashion chameleon, one of her most iconic looks was in Austin Powers: think big hair and a little dress.

Lady Gaga

You’d struggle to find a more empowering woman in the media today – more than just a bevy of crazy costumes, Stefani Germanotta (aka Lady Gaga) is an incredible activist and advocate for HIV/AIDS awareness with MAC cosmetics, a staunch supporter of the LGBT community and voice for marriage equality, and she runs her own charitable organisation, the Born This Way Foundation, which fosters youth empowerment. Her branding is iconic in her eclectic dress, but in terms of female empowerment – she’s a pretty good place to start!

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Khaleesi

She may be fictitious, but Daenerys Targaryen of George R.R Martin’s Game of Thrones has become such a source of inspiration and empowerment that in 2012 146 baby girls were named Khaleesi in the United States. The character Emilia Clarke plays is one of strength, power and care for her people. It’s no wonder she’s becoming such a popular example of female empowerment.

Wonder Woman

The name alone basically exudes inspiration. This heroine fights for justice, love, peace and equality: she’s a crime-fighting feminist icon! Holding her own in a “man’s world”, Wonder Woman is a great example of an empowering woman.

Katy Perry

An unlikely candidate for some of you. Katy Perry stands for female empowerment and inspiration in her perseverance and determination to achieve her goal: becoming a successful musician. She has certainly done that, and in her success has been a voice for gay rights, working with the It Gets Better Project, with feminist campaigning and as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. Aside from that, the cool and quirky Katy Perry we all love promotes the importance of loving yourself – and what better example is that?

Marilyn Monroe

What better example of an iconic female is there than Marilyn? Model, actress and sex symbol: Marilyn Monroe is the historic ideal woman, and that in itself is incredibly empowering.

Wnat more inspiration for empowering women’s halloween costumes? You’ll find a vast collection for sale on Spirit Halloween, and if you want some more detail, check out this awesome PopSugar article of 30+ Fierce Feminist Halloween Costumes.

This Halloween draw some inspiration from the vast selection of empowering women out there: historic, present and fictional. We are women – hear us roar!

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What’s Hot For Jewelry In 2015

With Christmas just around the corner, now is the time to start putting in your jewelry orders with Saint Nick. After all, what better gift could be received than the gift of jewelry? If you are keen to be seen with some of the hottest jewelry trends going into 2015, you are in the right place. Jewelry in 2015 is going to make a big impact. Flashy, subtle, gold and silver. We’ve got it covered.

So what’s going to be hot coming into 2015? Let’s look.

Pearls are a Girl’s Best Friend

Pearls are hotly tipped for next year. They’re going to be one of the hottest trends. The key to pulling of pearls is to make sure that they are simple and small. Your pearl should encase in a simple silver droplet necklace. This is a beautiful, elegant trend. But, it hones in on the vintage trend that shows no signs of slowing down. Pearls are beautiful and feminine. But, they can also look sophisticated when teamed with a little black dress.

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Slogan Bracelets

Slogan bracelets have been made popular by Chanel. But, according to Whiteflash jewelry store in Houston, Chanel is only the beginning. Many designers are keen to have slogan bracelets within their range. These are funky and on trend. What’s more, they break all of the fashion rules. Tarnished metal tones are the key to pulling off this look. This season, it’s all about wearing your life choices on your wrist. What could be more perfect?

Chunky Gold Cuffs

Chunky gold cuffs are the perfect accessory for any fashionista. What’s more, a drab outfit can look instantly fabulous with a gold cuff. Tarnished brass tones are popular. But, rose gold hues, and bold gold is making a big comeback. This is the perfect way to complete any outfit. It’s a cheap way to remain ahead of the curve and hit all of the right style notes. The chunkier, the better when it comes to gold cuffs. Keep it plain and simple for maximum impact. Some designers are choosing to etch simplistic Aztec patterns into the cuff. These are positively fierce too. Jewelry is back with a bang for 2015. This time it is bigger and bolder than ever before.

Silver, Silver

Silver has always been a hotly tipped precious metal choice. For the ultimate bohemian type, silver is a mainstay. This year, however, silver has had an upgrade. Silver is going to be bold, big and fearless. Whereas gold needs to be underplayed for maximum impact, silver should be worn loud and proud. Stack silver rings and bracelets for the ultimate bohemian look. Add delicate silver necklaces with chunkier, harsher tones. Layering and stacking are going to be a prominent feature within silver jewelry. Remaining on trend doesn’t mean splashing the cash. It means choosing your investment pieces wisely.

Necklace Combination

The choker and the elongated chain are going to be worn together in tandem next year. Gold is the obvious choice for a striking impact. But, do as Versace does and ensure that you are mixing and matching your precious metals.

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Time to Learn about Faux Fur!

Everyone can agree: There is something about fur. And thanks to advances in technology, it’s becoming harder and harder to tell the more-expensive real stuff from the faux fur. But as one can imagine, that has not always been the case. It was not that long ago that fur had its own class or caste system – it was easy to tell who were the fashionable well-to-do types with the real fur blankets on their beds, and who were the middle-class families who wanted to look the part with their faux fur blankets. Now, though, the differences are more subtle and the “classes” of fur buyers have begun to blur.

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Faux fur blankets, coats and scarves have been in the market about 80 years, which is about 80,000 years behind fur in the marketplace. And while the prices are distinctly different, in some ways faux fur has made up a steep curve to catch up in quality to the real thing. But what is the real history behind faux fur and how has it evolved to be a quality alternative to real animal fur? Glad you asked.

Faux Fur: A Brief History

Real fur being used as clothing had been a staple in fashion for thousands of years. But when people evolved and stopped killing animals for their clothing and started mass-producing fur garments, the market for fur was rather elite even as there was a market for the real thing – especially in fashion-forward cities like Paris and New York, and in places where it Just. Got. Cold.

But since many other people got cold, not just the well-heeled, manufacturing had advanced to the point that in 1929, the first faux fur – developed from alpaca fur – was developed. The new fabric didn’t reach a certain level of popularity until the 1950s when polymer manufacturing developed to replace alpaca and it started resembling fur without the animal. Acrylic was among the first materials in faux fur to replace alpaca, and those polymers had continued to develop and evolve to create more fur-like qualities. This came about through experimentation with combining polymers to create what would be called modacrylics, which have resulted in faux fur that has now taken on a texture and feel that is very similar to real fur and sold at a fraction of the price.

Why Did Faux Fur Have to Evolve, Anyway?

While faux fur wasn’t technically fake at first since it was directly made from alpaca fur, the goal ultimately wasn’t to make it surly fake; the goal was to make the alpaca work better as an alternative to mink, fox and the rest of the fine furs. And like most real furs, alpaca was pretty inflexible; it was hard to make into something that it wasn’t. Alpaca fur was not of a fine texture, there were limitations on colors and it was not as easy to work with as a fabric. While it was cheap, it showed itself to be cheap.

And if there was a choice between a real fur at the premium price and a cheaper and cheaper-looking alpaca fur garment, people would generally save their money and pay more for the “real” thing. The acrylics and polymers were becoming more vital in manufacturing around this time, so some experimentation came about to try to find a way to make faux fur cheap but not feel cheap- in other words, how to make a mink or fox shawl that wasn’t actually  from a mink or fox? As texture was very important with customers of fur, it was necessary for the faux-fur market – if there was ever going to be one – to at least come closer to the feel and texture of real fur without the real-fur price. That is where acrylics and now modern modacrylics and other polymers came in.

Faux Fur: Pros and Cons

The beauty of the polymers in faux fur is that they can be made to simulate real fur, and you can make faux fur blankets and garments in a variety of colors – especially those that don’t occur naturally among minks or foxes. This can mean vibrant colors and color combinations that are truly unique. Like how about leopard or tiger prints, or something purple or brick red?

Some other key positives are – of course – animals are not harmed in the making of modern faux fur (yay for the alpaca!); it is a fabric so it is easy to sew with; and with proper care it can last a long time. On the down side, because faux fur is not natural fabric, it does not biodegrade well, and it can be difficult to clean in order to maintain its feel and texture.  You can’t dry clean it, but you certainly can’t put it through a washing machine cycle unless you don’t mind it looking matted and losing is sheen.

However, as long as you are careful about getting faux fur dirty in the first place and you take care to clean it (usually a spot clean works best, or very light wet cleaning with a low-heat blow dryer and a brush), there is no question that faux fur has become a relatively inexpensive fashion alternative to real fur – and you won’t annoy the animal-rights activists in your neighborhood.

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Favorite Fall Items For Men

Once the summer has ended and the weather turns cooler, it is all about the “Fall”. Fabrics become denser to ward off the chill in the air and clothing colors become richer to welcome the new season.

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While I was browsing through some men’s fashion items for the Fall, I came across a few favorites. First, is a chunky cable knit sweater that is done in a great oatmeal color with a turtle neck and ribbed cuffs and waist. It is a fantastic way to add texture and interest to your wardrobe. Here, they paired the sweater with white jeans and brown leather loafers. This is exactly how to transition your look from Summer to Fall.

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Next, when you need a little something for the cooler weather, why not add a pop of color with this ocean blue quilted jacket. It has a stand collar, slim fit, and flap pockets, which make it almost resemble a blazer. The saturated blue color and the large diamond quilted pattern set it apart from most lightweight men’s jackets. It is a great addition to his blue check dress shirt, burgundy colored tie, and fitted khaki pants.

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Last, but not least, is another favorite of mine. It is a British tan leather jacket by Tom Ford. The golden brown color looks like it was taken directly from the changing leaves at their peak and you can almost feel the suppleness of the leather through the photo. Tom Ford uses a luxury grade leather for this coat and uses the traditional “jean jacket” styling, which is a timeless silhouette. Since the coat is a medium weight material, you can get a few layers underneath to keep you warm.

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Win a free tanktop!

Time for this week’s CEFashion contest! Courtesy of Kent Denim, we’re giving away a fun, zany top in your size.

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You might recognize the item from the Lonely Island music video – Adam Levine was rocking it:

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Entering to win the Tribal Pop Tank is easy. Just use the widget below to like Kent Denim’s Facebook page and you’re set!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Contest ends October 23rd at midnight. Good luck everyone!

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