does this outfit work?

May 2009

Amy Halldin, a singer/actress, likes the vintage feel of her pastel Anthropologie dress, but she couldn't decide which accessories to pair with it. So we gave her two options:

Option 1:
-Traded the built-in belt for a corset-style one
-Substituted her ankle-strap stilettos for simpler heels
-Exchanged her small purse for an oversize tote
-Added a gleaming bracelet

Option 2:
-Replaced her belt with a thin, studded style
-Changed the bag to a snakeskin-print clutch
-Swapped her shoes for platform silver heels

"We gave Amy day and night options to get the most use out of this piece," says fashion news director Jen Ford. "A belt was the place to start, both to toughen it up and to help define her curves. For a casual feel a wide tan leather belt does both; for something more fancy a thin studded one hits a perfect glam note. We opted for non-ankle-strap shoes—peep-toe pumps for day; pale metallic slingbacks for night—because they'll make her legs look slimmer. Finally, since her dress already has an antique feel, she needed a more modern bag to offset it: slouchy for day, and for night, a simple envelope clutch."

Amy's reaction: "The thicker belt in the first outfit nicely defines my waist, and I love that I can still add in a bright bit of color—the heels feel so playful. In the second choice, the belt and clutch are a bit edgier but in an understated way. They really update the romantic look."

The Pieces We Chose:

Corset-Style Belt

Leather and elastic, $119, Black & Brown, black-brown.com

Heels

Leather, $90, Seychelles, seychellesfootwear.com

Oversize Tote

Synthetic, $118, Jessica Simpson, piperlime.com

Croc-Print Clutch

Faux leather, $36, rimistyle.com

Silver Heels

Leather, $222, Stuart Weitzman, bluefly.com

Studded Belt

Leather and acrylic, $22, rimistyle.com

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