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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Graduation 101: A crash course in graduation attire

Thanks to our reader, Hannah, I've decided to go ahead an publish RemChic's first "comeback" article on graduation outfits. If you are part of the class of 2010 you probably are thinking you're pretty much over classes, but I'm here to give you a crash course on graduation fashion. Don't worry, this class will last you about 15 minutes. Amazing, right?

Exhibit A: Examine Your Body Type

First and foremost is fit. I think A-line dresses are a pretty foolproof option, but I suppose that is up for debate. Anyways, I prefer A-line dresses for this occasion for many reasons. Let's review...

1) A-line dresses are a classic cut. Classic = versatile = investment piece. Classic cuts can be paired with many other items and will be "in" for a long time. I'm sure out in the real world you will wear your A-line dress again and again.

2) A-line dresses sit well underneath graduation gowns. This really speaks for itself. A cute above-the-knee to midcalf A-line dress will sit well underneath your gown.

3) A-line dresses photograph well. Trust me when I say you will not be able to avoid photographs. Some dresses with asymmetrical cuts, etc. don't photograph well unless they sit just right and believe me, mom and dad will be snapping away even when you least expect it.

Not feeling the A-line? Here are some other options for your body type2:

Bottom-Heavy: go for fuller skirts that cinch at the waste and are loose all the way down. This will create a long line from the smallest part of your body down.

Top-Heavy: go for dresses with v-neck or square necks. Wrap dresses also look really good on bustier girls.

Hourglass: corset-topped dresses look really good or any dress that accentuates the smallest part of your body (usually the waist or bust line).

Petite: try a sheath dress that curves inward at the waist and throw on a push-up bra for some added shape ;) Dresses with a corset-like top will also give you some extra shape- keep in mind with the push-up bra and/or corset look that you should dress appropriate for an education-based function with family and friends. Nothing worse than a trashy looking girl on graduation....

Exhibit B: Consider the Season/Weather

Graduation comes right around the transitional period between spring and summer, so I say go for a dress that incorporates something springy or summery. This season, the two top trends are sun-saturated colors and floral prints.

Sun-Saturated Colors
According to Pantone, who is the "global authority on color and provider of professional color standards for the design industries1," these are the spring/summer 2010 colors, all based on earth-tones and warm blossom colors. For me, this sort of speaks to a back-to-the-basics philosophy, as all of these colors are very classic spring colors. Here are a few of the spring/summer colors for 2010:

1st row left-to-right:
Turquoise- Pantone 15-5519
Tomato Purée- Pantone 18-166
Fusion Coral- Pantone 16-1543
2nd row left-to-right:
Violet- Pantone 16-3320
Aurora- Pantone 12-0642
Pink Champagne- Pantone 12-1107
2rd row left-to-right:
Amparo Blue-Pantone 18-3945
Eucalyptus- Pantone 15-0513
Dried Herb- Pantone 17-0627

Floral Prints
Again, this is going back to what spring and summer traditionally represent- new life and with the whole "going green" movement, it is inevitable that nature-inspired images will be eminent throughout fashion.

Here are some of my favorite Spring 2010 runway looks that featured floral prints:

Talbot Runhof, Chanel, Christian Dior3

Exhibit C: Final Exam- Outfits That Fit the Part

Okay, so here are some dresses that I think suit all of the different areas we discussed. Of course, the dress isn't everything...remember cute accessories that are complimentary to the dress/occasion. Here are two example outfits, as well as an explanation for why I feel they work for graduation.

ONE: Anthropologie Fragrant Valley Dress

First of all, this picture (featured on the Anthro website) is so. freaking. adorable. That belt looks amazing on her!

Second, this meets all the criteria and bonus! It's a little black dress (LBD) which we all know is an essential wardrobe item. Additionally, the back is very flattering and adds a little pizazz to the simple jewel neckline in the front. Finally, the dress is by Corey Lynn Calter and although it is a bit pricey I have a top of hers that has held up for about 2 years, so her products are definitely of quality. Not convinced? Read the 38 reviews on Anthro's site! Here's a mini style file to show you how I would put this look together:

Fragrant Valley Dress- Anthropologie
Kimchi Blue Borcade Belt- Urban Outfitters
Toppazz Pumps- Steve Madden
Square Stud Earrings in Nectar- Kate Spade (available thorugh Piperlime) 

TWO:  J.Crew Wave Bodice Dress in Sanddune

This dress is also perfect for so many reasons. One, it's an A-line cut. Two, its sateen (most likely won't stick to your polyester blend gown). Three, its machine wash (hallelujah for cheaper dry cleaning bills). Four, it falls right above the knee. Five, it's very similar to Pantone's Fusion Coral, so you will look stunning in one of this spring's trendiest colors. Six, I found a coupon code! For an extra 20% off enter EXTRA20 at checkout.

For my imaginary outfit I decided to play on a coral, turquoise, and gold theme. It reminds me of Botticelli's painting "The Birth of Venus," which is definitely one of my favorite pieces of art. Ever. Anyways, I chose accessories that were lighter in gold and shoes that were a bit more copper in tone to prevent the outfit from being overly matchy-matchy. Let me know what you think!

Wave Bodice Dress in Sanddune- J.Crew
Lantana Necklace in Gold- Anthropologie (its only $38!)
Kaveney Heels in Gold- Aldo
Twisted Chain and Rock Bracelet- Free People (on sale!)

Exhibit D: Extra Credit

Here are a few additional tips...

1)  Make sure you practice walking in your heels, especially if they are new. I break in heels by doing chores in them around the house :) it seems to work well, actually.

2) Be confident! Be proud! You've worked hard for this, and you are beautiful!

Teacher Evalution

What do you think about my take on graduation outfits? If you are graduating, what are you planning on wearing? Let me know with a comment =)

1 "Pantone Fashion Color Report for Spring 2010 ." 11/9/2009. (accessed 04/28/10).




Tracy said...

I really love the second example outfit!! Super cute!! :)

Unknown said...

Ooooh I love this article! I actually got a dress from Anthropologie (it's kind of cream and gold, A-line strapless) and I need to get another one since there are two graduations! Scary, but fun! Thanks for helping me out, I really like all the options and advice! : )

Nicki said...

LOVE the Kate Spade earrings in the first outfit <3

Kristina said...

Tracy: Thanks!

Hannah: Of course! I'm sure you will look amazing on graduation...I can't wait to see pictures! Don't forget about RemChic when you are in law school =)

Nicki: Right?! Ugh. Me too. Love love LOVE them!

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