Monthly Archives: May 2012

Summer’s Best: The Swimdress

The modern swimdress has evolved from modest beginnings to become a glam waterside fashion statement. No longer the frumpy, body-hiding silhouette it once was, today’s swimdress ranges from sultry to playful.

Another great thing about swimdresses? The many incarnations of this iconic silhouette. We’ve broken it down into categories based on the statement the suit makes.

  1. The LBD: Two of our favorites are the Jantzen Glitz & Glamour and the Christina Safari Hardware.
  2. Retro: The possibilities are endless, but three great examples are the Jantzen Dot Net, the Carmen Marc Valvo Sunny Isles and the Jantzen Pin Dot Bandeau.
  3. Nautical: Two great picks are the Lauren by Ralph Lauren Bel Aire and the 24th & Ocean Nautical Mix.
  4. Floral: Try these pretty suits from Alex Marie and Gottex.
  5. Lingerie: Bodycon pieces from Coco Rave and the Betsey Johnson.
  6. Ruffled: You’ll love the choice of colors offered in this Kenneth Cole Reaction Ruffle-Licious suit or the mod polka-dot print Eco Swim Eco Bay swimdress.
  7. Body Shaping: If you love the swimdress but worry about its figure-hugging silhouette, try this Spanx Swim Blue Nile Bra-llelujah! or this flirty Miraclesuit Woman Pin Point suit.

What is your favorite swimdress category? Tell us about it in the comments.

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Guerlain Giveaway on Facebook

Now through June 2nd, enter for your chance to win 1 of 15 Guerlain L’Ecrin 6 Color Limited Edition Eyeshadow Palettes. Head over to our Facebook page to enter.

Want more? Shop our selection of Guerlain cosmetics.

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Kooba: Behind The Brand

Q: What makes the Kooba brand special?

A: Kooba uses rich textures and vintage-inspired silhouettes. When you couple that with their outstanding leather piece work and bold hardware, you’ve got an incredibly unique handbag. They have found a way to combine casual styling with luxury — this makes them distinct from other brands in the marketplace.

Q: How would you describe the Kooba woman?

A: I would say she is independent in her fashion expression. She speaks for herself and is free thinking, not a follower. She is applauded for her relaxed attitude and modern choices. The Kooba woman believes in individuality but she is also determined, and most importantly fun-spirited.

Q: Where can you take these bags (daily use, travel, special occasion, etc.)?

 A: Anywhere! These are substantial bags you can carry daily. Durability and functionality are never overlooked at Kooba and this makes them a long-lasting wardrobe staple. A Kooba can be paired with jeans or used as a work tote — the Grace tote is even big enough to be a weekender!

Q: What are your favorite styles?

A: The Jackson convertible is my favorite bag. It can be carried as a satchel, but it also has a shoulder strap for cross-body styling. This is perfect for shopping or other activities where carrying a handbag can get annoying. I LOVE the color! It is colorblocked which is super trendy right now, but in a versatile palette that can be worn with neutral or bright outfits. Also, the Zoey hobo is a great bag that can be worn all year long. It’s a good size with great function, and their brown multi color goes with any outfit.

Shop all Kooba at

Which Kooba bag is your favorite? 

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Wedding: Decoding the Dress Code

Wondering what to wear to an upcoming wedding? First consult the invite, and then check out our decoded dress codes below.

Shop Black Tie: Adrianna Papell Gown, Nadri Earrings, Cezanne Necklace, Gianni Bini Sandals, Kate Landry Wristlet 
Shop Cocktail:
JS Collections Dress, Nadri Bracelet, Natasha Accessories EarringsGianni Bini SandalsKate Landry Clutch
Shop Formal Daytime:
Antonio Melani Dress, MICHAEL Michael Kors Sunglasses, Cezanne Earrings, MICHAEL Michael Kors Pumps, Brahmin Clutch
Shop Dressy Casual:
BCBGMAXAZRIA Dress, Anna & Ava Bracelet, Natasha Accessories Necklace, Vince Camuto Sandals, Gianni Bini Clutch
Shop Garden Party:
Gianni Bini Dress, Jones New York Pashmina, Vince Camuto Sunglasses, Jessica Simpson Espadrilles, Natasha Accessories Earrings 
Shop Beach Destination:
Jessica Simpson Maxi Dress, Natasha Accessories EarringsNatasha Accessories Bracelet, BCBGeneration SandalsMICHAEL Michael Kors Clutch

Shop our entire selection of women’s special occasion dresses here.

Have you ever encountered a tricky wedding dress code? Tell us in the comments!


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The HomeFront: Beat the Heat with Frosty Treats

This summer, cool down with heat busters such as tasty sorbets, frozen drinks, slushies, frozen yogurts and of course, ice cream. But before spending a lot of money on store-bought ice cream and frozen drinks at the local bar, consider making them at home with professional-grade blenders and ice cream makers from The Margaritaville Frozen Concoction maker and the Cuisinart Soft Serve Ice Cream maker offer endless ideas for cold and creamy refreshments. Check out some of our favorite recipes below; they’re great for beating the heat. They also work perfect if you’re hosting a summer bash.

Ingredients for Frozen Drinks

Havanas and Bananas

  • 3/4 oz. Cruzan Aged Dark Rum
  • 3/4 oz. Crema de Banana Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. Bailey’s
  • 2-1/3 oz. Pina Colada mix
Lava Flow
  • 1-1/3 oz. Margaritaville Silver Rum
  • 2-1/2 oz. Pina Colada Mix
  • 1/2 oz. Strawberry Mix

Directions (for use with the Margaritaville Frozen Concoction Maker)

  1. Fill ice reservoir with ice cubes
  2. Pour ingredients into blender
  3. Blend until smooth
  4. Pour into glasses and serve

Ingredients for Coconut Chocolate Ice Cream

  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder, sifted
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar
  • pinch sea salt
  • 2 cans (13.5 ounce) coconut milk (do not use “lite”)
  • 1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Mix all ingredients together very well until there are no clumps (you can use a blender on low speed, or a hand blender, to be sure).
  2. Chill for at least an hour, or overnight.
  3. Turn the Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker on; pour the mixture into the frozen freezer bowl and let mix until thickened, about 30 to 35 minutes. The ice cream will have a soft, creamy texture. If a firmer consistency is desired, transfer the ice cream to an airtight container and place in freezer for about 2 hours. Remove from freezer about 15 minutes before serving.

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MAC: Hey, Sailor!

The nautical trend is all over our wardrobe and now with MAC’s Hey, Sailor! collection it’s poised to take over your beauty cabinet. This set is full of colors and shades that will turn your tide. You’ll ride the high seas of style with of-the-moment colors that MAC is known for, plus classics that everyone can appreciate. We got all hands on deck to tell you about some of our favorite products in the collection.

  • Set sail with new eyeshadows in seafaring hues like Feeling Fresh and Nautical Navy.
  • Bronzing powder (also available in Longwear) gives your look a shipshape summer glow.
  • Bold lips anchor your face — what nautical collection is complete without a bold red like Red Racer or a bright and cheery coral-tinted orange like Sail la Vie?
  • We love the new cheeky powder blush and the new highlight powder. When worn together, they’ll put you in 20,000 leagues of your own.
  •  For eyes that “pier” into the soul, the new Powerpoint eye pencils are a must-have.
  • Don’t be surprised  if the Captain “keels over” when you swab the deck wearing Bronzing to the Beach Body Oil.

Set a course for a fresh summer look and shop all MAC products at Dillard’

This limited edition collection won’t be around for long! Which color are you ready to try? 

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Ten Ways to Wake Up Your Work Wardrobe

In a workwear rut? Wake up your style with these office-friendly statement pieces. You don’t have to overhaul your closet — simply mix in a few pick-me-ups to create a playful yet polished look.

  1. Playful PeplumOne of our favorite emerging trends, peplums are perfect for the office. A whimsical butterfly and leaf print adds a unique touch to this Sugar Lips top, showing off your cheery personality.
  2. Pink Power Blazer: This updated essential is strong, confident and so much more interesting than basic suiting. Stay cool and collected under pressure with this lightweight linen design from Cremieux.
  3. No-Frills MaxiSlip into a sleek, lengthy silhouette for instant wardrobe rejuvenation. This MICHAEL Michael Kors maxi has office-appropriate short sleeves, but we love it with a Pink Power Blazer for added structure.
  4. Beachy ToteBummed you’re not at the beach? Bring a bit of vacation style to work with this Straw Studios tote. Clean lines keep the bag structured enough for the office. Plus, your work files fit easily inside.
  5. Bright PantsA colored trouser in a classic shape makes a safe statement in just about any office. If you work in a creative environment, style this Antonio Melani pant with complementary colors for a colorblock look. More conservative company culture? Stick to tailored blouses in neutral hues.
  6. Daring Nail Polish: Ask any put-together woman and she’ll tell you: the proof is in the polish. Sport perfectly polished fingers and toes, and they’ll assume you’ve got everything else pulled together. We love any hue, neutral to neon, from butter LONDON.
  7. Punchy PumpThe classic pump, but brighter. We especially love this Steve Madden pointed-toe style with crisp, cropped pants and prim pencil skirts.
  8. Face-Framing Scarf: Feeling tired? Skip the extra cup of coffee and opt for a complexion-friendly scarf instead. This Eileen Fisher scarf flaunts a strawberry hue that lifts your mood and brings a rosy glow to your cheeks. And, the extra coverage adds just enough warmth to combat overzealous air conditioning.
  9. Printed Pencil SkirtFresh prints take the pencil skirt from tightly-wound to on-trend. Cheerful in sunshine/ivory zigzag stripes, this Antonio Melani skirt breathes new life into basic tops.
  10. Arm Candy: Accessories are the quickest way to enliven your look. So why not indulge in irresistible arm candy? These stackable kate spade bangles have playful sayings, like “hot to trot,” etched inside to get you through long days.

Shop our entire selection of women’s clothing here.
How do you show your personal style at work? Tell us in the comments!

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Betsey Johnson: Dillard’s Exclusive Interview

Embellished might be an understatement when describing the designs of Betsey Johnson. Her clothing and jewelry are often called “over-the-top” but anything less just wouldn’t be Betsey. Before a visit to a San Antonio Dillard’s, she shared a bit about her inspiration and things she just can’t live without.

Q: Your clothing and jewelry lines feature everything from butterflies and bumble bees to skulls and skeletons; from what do you draw inspiration for your eclectic and often edgy designs?
A: From me and my life and the streets and anything and everything.

Q: How has your design aesthetic changed since you opened your first boutique in 1969 and how do you see it evolving as you continue working in the fashion industry?
A: It changes because the world changes and my life changes with it. Back then I was an insecure girl with my blinders on — I was blinded by what everyone wanted me to do and couldn’t see what I really wanted to do. But now I get to do it my way!

Q: Speaking of fashion shows, you’re known for doing a cartwheel at the end of yours, how did that come to be and are you still cartwheeling?
A:  I hope to until the day I die. I started doing it about 10 or 12 years ago — I was so excited after the show that I cartwheeled out all my excitement!

Q: If you could save only one of your pieces from a “fashion apocalypse,” what would it be and why?
A: I would have to save two things: a puffy, tulle ballerina-ness prom type dress and a skin tight, Monroe-esque, va va voom sheath dress.

Q: If you could save only one piece from your closet, that you didn’t design, what would it be and why?
A: My black leather Alexander McQueen suit-tailed military jacket OR my Alexander McQueen insect printed tight tee shirt dress with my vintage New York belt.

Q: What Betsey Johnson essential should every woman own? Why?
A: A tutu dress because it’s classic Betsey!

Q: If we caught up with you at home on a weekend afternoon, what would you be wearing?
A: A rock n’ roll tee shirt with some crazy cutoff jeans.

Q: Do you have a favorite designer? If so, who and why?
A: Vivienne Westwood because we share the same basic ideas.

Q: Is there a celebrity you’d love to design for? Who and why?
A: Katy’s worn my stuff, Nicki’s worn my stuff. I guess I’d love to help out by designing for the next big name in music – whoever that may be!

Shop all Betsey Johnson.

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Betsey Johnson In-Store Appearance

We recently had a bright and bubbly visit from one of our favorite designers at the North Star Mall Dillard’s in San Antonio, Texas. She swept in wearing a “Betseymania” tee and was ready to greet all of her fans.

The stage is set for Betsey to arrive.

Some of our cutest products on display in the store.

Betsey working the crowd! She has so much energy!

Read our exclusive interview to learn more about the woman who designs clotheslingerieswimwearhandbagsaccessories and shoes with signature edge and whimsy.

Shop all Betsey Johnson at

What do you love about Betsey Johnson? Tell us in the comments!

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Bodycon: Word of the Week

Here in The Dressing Room, we strive not only to feed your fashion sense, but also to expand your fashion vocabulary. That said, we’d like to share a word of the week with you.

Bodycon   [n.] \bä-dē-kän\   A noun used to describe a style of tight clothing that emphasizes the contours of the body. The term is shortened from body-conscious.

We know most women shy away from anything with the term “skintight” in its description. However, we have some sizzling bodycon looks that will wrap you in high style this season.
Bodycon Examples

  1. For a party, choose this Catch My i dress. Neon pink piping inserts add interest to this little black dress.
  2. This Catch My i printed bodycon skirt is cute and colorful and pairs perfectly with a tank or tee. For extra coverage,  add a blazer for a layered look.
  3. A more casual bodycon look, this printed GB dress is the perfect choice for attending a summer festival or barbecue.

Shop our bodycon looks here.

Are you bold enough to bodycon? If so, tell us about your look in the comments.

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