Sunday, April 13, 2014

Men's Styling : Denim Guide

Invest in the basics, gentlemen. A great pair of jeans can do a ton for your wardrobe. 

Here's a quick guide to how to find the right pair, and a few brands to try out. 

Strike a balance between flattering and comfort. The worst thing you can do is buy jeans that are too big. While they feel comfy, you are doing a disservice to your body regardless of your shape or size. Look for jeans that are tight in the waist, and butt region. Yes, we want to see your butt so show it off!

There's a common denominator that I've noticed among guys with pants that are too big. Their belts are the only thing holding up the jeans and there is extra fabric hanging from the waist through the hip that makes the pants wider than the man's frame. This will make you look heavier than you are, so choose something that is more snug than you may be used to. 

There are a variety of styles out there right now including jeans that hit right at the ankle, but let's stick with the classics since you are investing in these for the long run. I recommend that the jeans break 1-2 times around your shoe. Try the jeans on with a pair of shoes you wear often and see how many natural folds happen at the hem. After two breaks, the pants are too long and begin to look sloppy. Get them tailored if they aren't quite the right length.  

While lighter denim shades are definitely trendy this spring, look for a darker wash. These will always be in style. I've included several options below, some are almost black, and are flattering on all men. 

Update your wardrobe with any one of these go-to denim brands:

Levi's - This is my favorite brand not only for men, but women as well. The variety of styles they offer along with the incredibly affordable price gives you a great look without sacrificing quality. You can't go wrong with a classic pair of Levi's. 

7 For All Man Kind - This brand is very popular and although they are at a higher price point, they are worth the investment. The dark wash allows you to dress it up or down and you will get great use out of these jeans. 

AG Jeans - I found this brand on Instagram and really like the way they pair denim with other classic pieces. They are great at "keeping it simple".

WESC - This brand was recommended to me by a friend with great style, Richard Nguyen. He vouches for their quality and fit. The brand features a variety of colored denim as well as the classic washes. Here is one of my faves from the site. Save it to your wishlist because they aren't available yet! 

Finally, to keep these investments looking stellar, read this article from GQ, written in a hilarious tone might I add. 

Denim questions? Let me know at or @kkeepsitsimple!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Men's Styling: How to Dress to Impress on Valentine's Day

Here it is gentlemen. The Hallmark holiday that asks you to bring your A-game and impress your special someone. So once you've picked out some flowers, chocolates, jewelry or whatever you've chosen for your lovely partner, don't forget about how you look!

Here are a few quick pointers that are sure to shape up your look on this lusty holiday and have your date doing a double take!

1. Fitted jeans - if all men would just wear pants that FIT them, we'd probably achieve world peace. OK, not really, but this is one of my biggest pet peeve's with men's style. They wear baggy pants because they've been wearing that size forever. Go to the store and ask the sales person to help you find the right fit. I know not all of my readers want to wear skinny jeans, but just find a pair that don't have you swimming and tapered towards the bottom. Even let the pants hug your butt a bit too! Trust me, you will look like you've been hitting the gym with this simple trick.

2. Jacket - throw on a nice blazer over that button down. It can't hurt to be a bit overdressed this year, depending on where you're headed. Even if you stay in, surprise your love by wearing a nice outfit. That unexpected element of sleek style will definitely kick off the spark for the evening.

3. Haircut - and overall grooming for that matter. Have your barber give you a once over in the nose and ear department for any stray hairs. I can't believe I just typed that, but trust me! Your partner will notice the extra clean up.

4. Pocket Square - This is my favorite accessory to help you standout and bring your style game up to the next level. Choose a bright color or pattern to contrast against your jacket.

5. SHOES - If you've ready any of my posts around men's style, you've heard me say that your shoes say everything about who you are and how much you care about yourself. Shine up those loafers and oxfords and take them for a spin on the special day.

Followed my tips and you'd like to share your dapper look? Email me a pic of your date night outfit and you could be featured in my next blog post and on Instagram!

Happy Valentine's Day gents!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

LOFT Styling Event

Just a few weeks ago, I hosted a styling party at LOFT. It was a blast and I will definitely be doing more of these this year. Here are some of the event highlights in case you missed it! 

What I loved about this event was that I was able to work with a bunch of clients one-on-one throughout the eventing. Whether they were shopping for themselves, or picking out holiday gifts for family and friends, it was like being a kid in a candy store picking out unique options based on each individual.

I owe several people big thank yous for helping me with this event.
Brendan Shanley photographed the event, and as you can see, did a phenomenal job. Check out his awesome work on his site, Lost In Print

Natalie Barney created my invitations and signage. They were perfect and very "katie keeps it simple".

Melissa Unkel, store manager at LOFT, brought this opportunity to life and even made cupcakes for the event. Our sweets table was magnifique! Her staff also helped me so much! From promoting the event, to working with our guests and delivering a great experience that evening, they did it all!

And thanks to my friends that came out as well! Your support meant a lot to me!

Make sure you come to our next event so you can enter to win a free closet styling session with me!

My outfit that evening was from the LOFT. I was wearing their light weight maroon-zebra print cardigan tucked into a cobalt blue/black tweed pencil skirt with black tights and boots from John Fluevog. I have really been impressed with LOFT's selection lately and really liked that this outfit was a bit unexpected. LOFT is great for basic and classic pieces, but really nails the trendy and funky pieces too.

Until the next party, Happy New Year and remember to keep it simple!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

PREVIEW: Styling Event at LOFT

With my styling event at LOFT quickly approaching, I had to take a peek at their latest clothes and accessories and wanted to share my favorites with you!

This pair of white velvet pants caught my eye on the site right away. Winter white is the most elegant color and looks stunning in these slimming pants. By the way, they are velvet! Yummm.

I'd pair it with the above burgundy blouse. It's flowy, sheer and the airy feel is a great compliment to the structured white pant.

I also love the below playful partridge sweater! It's simple and adorable, so I'd play it up with this sequin skirt and this faux fur popover, which is reversible! I love the jaquard side since it has a festive gold woven pattern.

A few additional pieces also caught my eye. This camel shift skirt is a great staple to have in your fall and winter wardrobe. You can pair it with almost any color. I like that it's styled with black tights, which make the warm skirt really pop.

And these velvet drawstring pants! I mean, I just want to cuddle with them. They look so soft and cozy. What a fun way to dress up the holidays and still stay comfy.

Who doesn't love a bit of fake fur too! Classic white fur cuff gloves are the perfect accessory to jazz up your winter coat. They are also a great gift idea. (Hint, hint...)

Finally, I browsed through the shoe section, and while I'd love to take most of them home, my favorite is this mid heel in ivory suede and black patent leather. They go with everything! And, are likely pretty comfortable given their heel height.

Hope this helped you make your shopping list! Join me on Thursday at LOFT 51 E. Randolph from 6-8 p.m. and check out these latest styles and more!

Monday, October 21, 2013

What My Photographer Wore

Back from Arizona for his sister's wedding, my friend Mark was looking dapper today and I just had to blog about his look.  Mark is usually behind the camera for me, so I turned the lens around on him and made him pose!

Overall, Mark's outfit uses a lot of different textures and colors that work together seamlessly. I loved the chambray shirt over the red-hued commuter pant. The pants are slim and fit Mark's frame perfectly and the rolled cuff is one of my favorite details for men's casual wear.



I cannot get over how cute the detailing is on these pants!
Pink thread, and polka dot lined pockets. A+!

I also love Mark's leather boots. Men, you cannot go wrong with a good pair of boots for the rest of the Fall and into Winter. Just remember, this is the first thing women notice about you, and these make a great statement.

Mark's outfit from head to toe: Levi's shirt, vest by Penfield, watch by Shinola, belt and pants by Ted Baker, and Frye boots.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Art of Fashion Show : Chicago

What a night! From standard clapping to outright cheering and whooping, last night's Art of Fashion Show was delightful.

While I snapped some pics and chatted with my ever so lovely date, Mary Mapes, the models clicked down the runway and showed off the latest designs from various designers.

Here are some of my favorite pics!

I have to say that Calvin Tran's looks got the most cheers from the crowd as several of the pieces he created often had surprise convertible options. One model took off her skirt to reveal that it doubled as a jacket. Very ingenious. 

And my favorite pieces from the night included everything that Lily & Migs did. Adorable! Each model had sunglasses adorned with psychedelic flowers and the models were so playful! Two of the girls stopped at the end of the runway and winked at photographers while licking lollipops. The last model came out with a clear pink trimmed umbrella that she twirled for the audience. The clothes may have been a bit straightforward but the presence and the attitude made them show stoppers.