Archive for the ‘clothes/shoes’ Category


Kim Kardashian’s maternity woes prompt a style lesson

Posted by Lorain County Moms


NEW YORK — Kim Kardashian: Take note.

To be stylish and pregnant, you need to embrace your new shape. You have to celebrate it. But you also need to be aware of it, and not keep wearing your regular wardrobe — even if it’s a size up.

Kardashian, who is expecting her first child with Kanye West in July, has taken heat from the tabloids and armchair fashion critics for her maternity look, which seems a continuation of her usual parade of body-hugging dresses — many of which have a hard-to-wear hemline that hits below the knee — tucked-in blouses, complicated couturelike details and super-high heels.

Lately, though, it seems she’s taken the plunge into maternity clothes, sometimes wearing stretch-waist maternity jeans (designer, of course) and leggings, which Pea in the Pod design director Olivia Capone Myers says are the No. 1 must-have item for a successful pre- and post-baby wardrobe.

Leggings, along with side-ruched T-shirts and dresses, preferably made of stretch jersey, are the first things to buy when the bump starts showing, and they’re the last ones you’re wearing after mom and baby are settled in at home, Myers says.

Myers, herself 8 months pregnant, says the current wave of celebrity moms-to-be has reignited interest in this corner of the fashion world, which is sometimes more relatable to shoppers than the runway. The key, experts say, is to stay true to your personal style, but not be so stubborn that you won’t tweak it.

“Jessica Simpson … she’s really done an amazing job of looking fabulous. She has tweaked her style, moving from heels to flats but still polished. She’s kept her sense of style even with her changing body, and she isn’t afraid to sport trends,” Myers says. “She’s wearing maxi dresses and lace.”

Baukjen de Swaan Arons, designer of the British-based maternity label Isabella Oliver, has been watching star style, too. She liked the way Jenna Dewan Tatum wore the brand’s fitted couture black lace gown at the Oscars earlier this year, but she says that it’s equally stylish to be “out and about” in a jersey top. And she gives kudos to a then-pregnant Kristen Bell for doing a rock ‘n’ roll leather jacket and bright purple dress at the Sundance Film Festival. (Bell has since given birth to a daughter.)

The Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton possesses what might be the world’s most famous baby bump, and she has made a seamless transition into her slightly revamped look. She already wore “mostly pretty, flattering and simple silhouettes — dresses, coats, hats and monochromatic color,” exactly what style expert Amy Tara Koch would suggest.

“She gets the balance, proportion, simplicity. It seems her nature, so it will already be easier for her to look good every day throughout her pregnancy,” says Koch, who wrote the book “Bump It Up.”

But that’s not how Kardashian dresses, so there are other tips, says Koch: Kimono sleeves instantly create the bohemian vibe that works well in maternity wear, and so do tunic tops with a blousoned dropped waist. The high necks and below-the-knee hemlines Kardashian sometimes wears do not. Dangling earrings would draw the eye to the slope of the neck and shoulders, and a chunky necklace worn against a jewel neck or slightly scooped or V-neck shirt would emphasize the bustline upward.

“You want to create a focal point that will take attention from elsewhere,” Koch says. “Kim’s face looks so pretty now. She has that glow. That’s what we should be looking at.”

Fit is also important. Stay away from extremes — whether it’s too tight or too loose, says designer Rebecca Minkoff, who blogs for

Oversized clothes might fit the bump, but will work against everywhere else, agrees de Swaan Arons. Consider this the time to show off nice legs or a bit of cleavage.

Jersey fabric with its tight-weave stretch is good camouflage (and not just for pregnant women). Designer Abi Ferrin says good jersey will stretch and shrink with the body, and that the weight of the fabric smooths bumps.

The garment should be cut to give a little bit of structure because the jersey is so forgiving, Ferrin says.

Minkoff got through her first trimester by looping a hair band around the button loop of her pants, but, she says, eventually moms-to-be turn to maternity clothes. Also, it’s OK if they eventually need a little confidence boost to alleviate doubts about a changing figure, she says. Her easy fix? Invest in “great shoes, great jewelry and a great jacket.”

Researcher MyungHee Sohn, an assistant professor of textile and apparel management at the University of Missouri, has found that, based on body scans, most pregnant women should be moving into maternity clothes in their fifth month, although shoppers typically put it off longer, and the industry uses a 7-month model for most of its measurements.

By the time they are five months pregnant, it’s not just their belly that has grown, but also their bust, waist and hips, Sohn says. “It’s definitely a new shape. It’s not just the body of a woman who gained weight.”

Pea in the Pod’s Myers notes that what’s in maternity stores now reflects broader fashion trends. You’ll find the tunic-and-blazer combination, the cardigans layered with nice Ts, and even the bright pops of color and springtime prints. “The mistake I see most is the mentality that they think they have to stay away from stripes, or florals or prints because they fear them to be unflattering, but I think the opposite is true,” she says.

A clean, sharp nautical stripe, for example, will break up the bump.

An “it” look, like a peplum, which she dubs “an arrow to your hips,” can be harder to pull off, Koch says. Instead consider of-the-moment accessories, such as a shoe-bootie with a stacked heel or a candy-colored, oversized handbag.

Just don’t overstuff it — yet. “Pretty soon that will turn into a heavy diaper bag,” Minkoff says.


Jessica Simpson launching clothing line for moms-to-be

Posted by Lorain County Moms

NEW YORK — Brand-new mother Jessica Simpson is launching a line of clothing for moms-to-be.

With it all still fresh in her mind, the 31-year-old singer-actress, who gave birth to daughter Maxwell Drew Johnson on May 1, announced Monday a partnership between Camuto Group, the master licensee behind her label, and retailer Destination Maternity.

The clothes, with a hint of a 1970s vibe, will be in stores in the fall. She said she’ll aim for clothes “flattering to your baby bump.”

Simpson famously tweeted while pregnant that she dreamed she went to the hospital wearing an animal-print kaftan.

This collection builds on her already strong fashion portfolio, with 24 product categories, including clothes, jewelry, shoes and beauty products.

Simpson is a regular on NBC’s “Fashion Star” reality competition show.


Diane von Furstenberg starts courting them young at Gap

Posted by Lorain County Moms


NEW YORK — Today’s little girls are probably the wrap-dress wearers of the future, so why not just start them young?

Gap tapped Diane von Furstenberg, who has built her business on easy-to-wear, cheerful wrap dresses, for a limited-edition girls collection that arrives in U.S. stores next week.

It’s another designer label for the kids’ closet, joining the likes of Gucci, Stella McCartney and Burberry.

When first approached by Gap, however, von Furstenberg said no. “I always thought I didn’t want to do children’s clothes,” von Furstenberg said in a telephone interview. “I did do a little in the ‘70s, but I stopped because I wanted girls to take their time to grow up to be women.”

But then she thought about taking colors and prints, and making them stylish in an age-appropriate way. She is pleased with the results, describing the wrap rompers, T-shirt dresses, capri leggings and other items as the right balance of fun and practicality, she said.

Von Furstenberg was the right partner to go after, said Art Peck, president of Gap North America. She’s surefire buzz and fashion credibility, he said.

Although he joined the company after the project was in the works, he said she would have been at the top of his list, too, because both brands aim for a straightforward style instead of garments that are fussy or uncomfortable. Gap is looking to get back to its roots after some years of declining sales.

“Diane von Furstenberg has a successful women’s business and she didn’t want to compete with that, but kids was new to her, and she has grandchildren,” Peck said. “A 5-year-old doesn’t know Diane von Furstenberg but mom certainly does.”

Gap previously collaborated with McCartney on kids’ clothes, and Peck said more deals might come sooner rather than later. “There are a number of irons in the fire.”

There’s something to be said for building brand loyalty young, he explained. “I’d like to get them as Gap customers the moment they come out of the hospital as a baby and stay with us the rest of their lives.”


10 fashionable cool-weather clothes for kids

Posted by Lorain County Moms

By Andrea Pyros,

Rain, snow and chilly weather won’t slow down kids — especially when they’re appropriately suited up. We’ve found the cutest coats and accessories for cool days, so your brood can enjoy the outdoors during the months to come.

She’ll look dressed up but feel as comfy as can be in this Bow Pocket Knit Coat ($49.99) from Janie and Jack. Sweet touches like a polka-dot lining, bows on the pockets and a pleated back elevate this machine-washable cotton coat to beyond a basic. See more at

Hanna Andersson calls this stylish coat Our Warmest Reversible Down Jacket (regularly $108, on sale now for $75), and the Swiss company isn’t joking around. Hanna Andersson, which has been keeping families cozy for almost 30 years, crafted this for functionality and maximum warmth (it’s 80 percent down and 20 percent feathers). The coat zips up the front and comes with a storm flap, hood, a water-resistant polyester shell and reflective piping for safety. See more at

A Three-in-One Hooded Snow Jacket ($74.95) from Gymboree is as versatile as can be. The coat has a quilted outer layer and a removable polka-dot hoodie that can be worn underneath. Combine the two or wear them separately depending on the temp. Either way, this jacket looks and feels great! See them at

This sporty and slightly retro cotton Diez Stripe Jacket ($28) from Tea Collection is ideal for cool fall days and looks hip enough to please older boys, too. See more at

A Carter’s Puffer-Style Vest ($28) is perfect for layering on those in-between weather days. Plus, it’s lightweight enough to cram into a backpack if your kid gets hot and needs to take the vest off midday. See more at

H&M’s glittery knit hat is adorned with a playful bow certain to charm your girl. At only $7.95, you can afford to get it in all four colors — and not flip out if she inevitably loses it. See more at

A mini Boden fleece-lined hat ($28) with those always-appreciated earflaps will make your boy look like a total all star. See more at

Cold hands can ruin a fun outing faster than you can say “brrr.” But if the kids don a pair of toasty Patagonia Baby Puff Mitts ($35), they’ll be able to build snowmen all day long. See more at

Picking things up is a whole lot easier when you wear J.Crew’s Glittens ($19.50). Honoring its name, this pair of gloves is a mitten-glove hybrid. Your son can flip ‘em open if he needs to use his fingers and then resecure them with just one simple button. See more at

If your daughter insists on wearing skirts no matter what the thermometer says, buy a two-pack of Keds Striped and Solid Tights ($14) at Kohl’s, so she’ll stay warm and toasty all season long. See more at

Andrea Pyros lives in New York’s Hudson Valley, where she raises her two kids and writes for — the No. 1 coupon site in the world.


Church holding free kids clothing boutique

Posted by Lorain County Moms

Vermilion Evangelical and Reformed Church will hold a free kids clothing boutique 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 8.

The boutique includes clothes for newborns through size 14.

The church is are located at 752 Grand St. The entrance to the Kids Boutique is behind the education building, which can be accessed from Grand Street or Ohio Street.

For more information, call 440-967-3559 or go to


Top five mom style don’ts

Posted by Lorain County Moms

By Jennifer Gerlock, Hybrid Mom

Ladies, I believe we can be our own worst enemies. We spend so much time taking care of our husbands, our children, our jobs, our homes and even our pets that there is little, if any, time left to take care of ourselves.

Style? What’s that? Who has the time or energy to think about THAT? Besides, style is something for people with major money, right?


Style, in fact, has very little to do with money. It’s about making a conscious decision to present yourself to the world in a particular manner.

Take a moment to think about what style you are you presenting to the world right now. Does your personal style say that you live a manic lifestyle, drive a minivan and that your kids rule your life? Or does it show a little personality? A little glimpse into the woman within?

In honor of Mother’s Day we’ve reached out to moms around the country and gotten their feedback on the most significant mistakes that mother’s make when it comes to personal style.

  1. Mom Hair/No Makeup. It is oh-so-easy to fall into this trap. After all, who has time to get all dolled up when you have children to corral? (Especially when it is unbelievably easy to throw your hair in a bun or a ponytail and bolt out the door!) Give yourself a couple of extra minutes in the morning to fuss with the hair and put on a little powder, blush, or lipstick. You’ll feel better and radiate confidence.
  2. Sporting the T-shirt and sweat pants uniform. Don’t do it! If there is one look that screams “I just gave up” it is consistently appearing in public sporting sweats and a big boxy T-shirt. Congratulations, you’ve just become your mother. There are times when sweats are appropriate, however it shouldn’t be your mommy uniform. What you wear sends an unspoken message. It says that you take the time to treat yourself well and that others should too.
  3. Opting for cheap and comfortable. I know that you want to be comfortable, believe me, so do I. But elastic waist band pants from Wal-Mart are never the answer. Dressing in clothing that is too large and/or continuing to wear your maternity clothing after the baby is already walking only serves to make you look larger and gives off a sloppy impression. It’s not attractive. And while we are on the subject, sneakers and Crocs do not, in fact, go with everything. Good shoes can be comfortable and make the outfit.
  4. Dressing too young or in the wrong size. Come to terms with the fact that you are not 19 anymore. Dressing “trendy” is fine but wearing your daughter’s skin tight skirts to the office are not. Unless you have attained a Demi Moore-esque killer body then you might want to use a little discretion with regards to figure hugging ensembles. Find clothing that fits you well or hire a tailor. Three things to remember: Appropriate is best. Muffin tops are bad. Spanx are your friend.
  5. Mom Jeans. Do I even need to mention this? So much has been written on the subject that I wince when viewing offenders in public. Please find jeans that fit you correctly. I can’t stress this enough. It will take years off of your look!

In short, take care of YOU. A few extra moments each day can make a world of difference in how you look and how you feel about yourself. You’re worth it! ?

Read more from Jennifer Gerlock at her site, Hip As I Wanna Be.


Parents, doctors debate tots teetering in heels

Posted by Lorain County Moms

Associated Press

DALLAS — A pair of sparkly, peekaboo shoes with heels 2 inches high are favorites of 6-year-old Helena Bell ever since she got them for a wedding.

“She’s worn them to the point where the jewels have fallen off,” says Helena’s mother, Dana Bell of Woodland Hills, Calif. “It’s not my preference, but I’ve stopped fighting it.”

The heels aren’t allowed at school, but the first-grader slips on her white treasures first thing when she gets home and wears them to church every Sunday. “I think if it’s within reason, it’s OK,” her mom says.

As images of 3½-year-old Suri Cruise out and about in blingy heels recently hit magazines and the Internet, reactions to the grown-up look for not-so-old kids have ranged from cries of inappropriate to defense of a little girl’s right to be girlie. Suri’s mom, Katie Holmes, told Access Hollywood she considers the kitten heels supportive because they were made specifically for kids learning ballroom dancing.

Samantha Fein of San Jose, Calif., says her 6-year-old daughter has attracted some double-edge remarks — “My, look at your big girl shoes” — when she wears her knee-high boots with a 2-inch chunky heel or her brown wedges with only slightly less height. Fein notes that her child wears sneakers 90 percent of the time and heels on special occasions, like birthday parties.

“It’s not like I’m sending her to the park in them,” she says. “I think there’s a time and a place for everything.”

The San Francisco Bay area is pretty fashion forward, so it’s not unusual to see girls that young wearing heels. Fein says they’ve helped her daughter learn to walk like a lady. “They’re definitely not suggestive at all. Suggestive to me is inappropriate.”

The phenom falls in line with other trends in clothing, books, music and movies once reserved for older audiences trickling down the age ladder.

As Christina Vercelletto, senior editor of Parenting magazine, has been putting together the spring fashion edition, she’s noticed shoes for girls as young as 5 and 6 sporting heels as high as an inch.

“I am seeing these heeled shoes, shoes that would be considered a little too grown up typically for a girl that age,” she says. “I think it’s definitely a trend for 5- or 6-year-olds.”

In years past, Vercelletto says, heels usually stopped at sizes for 8- or 9-year-olds. She unsuccessfully tried to nab a pair of stacked heel boots that arrived in a bag of hand-me-downs for her own 6-year-old but wasn’t quick enough. Now, Vercelletto tries to keep them out of sight in the back of a closet.

“I do feel that it’s rushing it a little to put a girl 3 years old in shoes like that,” said Vercelletto, among those who fear the physical perils.

Unlike other trends, heels pose physical risks that include a tightening of the heel cord and changes in the growth plate.

Matthew Dairman, a Suffolk, Va., foot and ankle surgeon and a spokesman for the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons, urges parents to limit wear to once or twice a week for four hours at a stretch — if at all. Another important factor, he says, is difficulty in keeping kids from running, which could make those in heels more susceptible to ankle sprains or broken bones.

“You put a kid in a heel and someone touches them and says tag, they’re it — they’re off,” Dairman says. “Moderation is key.”

Michael Penrod, a sales representative for children’s footwear with a showroom at Dallas Market Center, a wholesale merchandise marketplace, says adult styles began surfacing in children’s footwear a decade ago. While manufacturers do offer heels in sizes small enough to possibly fit a 3-year-old, stores are more likely to carry sizes meant from age 5 and up.

Heels for young girls get mixed reactions from buyers, with more interest from the coasts and bigger department stores.

“In the South, there’s still a very traditional store owner that prefers the younger looking silhouettes,” he says.

Jennifer Thomas, one of the owners of two Chicago-area children’s shoe boutiques called Piggy Toes, says she doesn’t carry heels for young girls.

“I just don’t think they’re age appropriate,” says Thomas, who has a 10-year-old daughter she doesn’t want to see in them. “As far as the customers, girls for sure love them. Mom usually doesn’t want them.”

Dr. James W. Brodsky, a Dallas orthopedic surgeon and past president of the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society, says healthy shoes for kids are similar to healthy shoes for adults — not too high a heel, plenty of width in the toe box, soft natural materials to conform to the shape of the foot and good support.

Dairman does see some value in girls around 12 or so learning to wear heels, when their bones have developed. And while he doesn’t think younger girls wearing heels is that widespread, “as kids seem to be aging quicker, it’s something that should be addressed.”

Lisa Spiegel, a counselor and director of Soho Parenting, a New York City parenting resource center, says worry about kids aging too fast is often on the minds of parents today. She says she hasn’t noticed a prevalence of young girls wearing heels but does know parents contending with young girls wanting to wear makeup or dress in too-skimpy clothes.

“We really, really try to help families hold onto their better instincts that kids should be children and not little adults,” she says.


Free kids boutique at Vermilion church

Posted by Lorain County Moms

Vermilion E & R Church, 752 Grand St., Vermilion, knows that these are trying financial times, and the church would like to offer assistance to the families in our community. It will be offering free clothing in sizes ranging from newborn through juniors.

There is no obligation. All we ask is that children are accompanied by a parent or guardian and clothing be taken only for children residing in your home.

We will be open from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. on these dates:

  • Tuesday, Jan. 12
  • Tuesday, Feb. 9
  • Tuesday, March 9

The entrance to the Kids Boutique is behind the Education Building, which can be accessed from Grand Street or Ohio Street.

If you are looking for a church to call home, Vermilion E & R Church welcomes you.

Sunday school is at 9 a.m. Sundays and Sunday worship is at 10:30 a.m. For more info, call (440) 967-3559 or visit


Frugal fall fashion picks for the mom-to-be

Posted by Lorain County Moms

By Kaitlin Stanford,

Stay chic without spending a fortune — we’ve got four fall looks all for under $50.

Now that fall’s here, you can kick off those sandals, pack up the skin-baring sundresses, and kiss that bathing suit good-bye for another year. It’s time to welcome back oversized cardigans, comfy jeans, and dark, figure-flattering colors. But even though your belly might be growing by the minute, you don’t have to go broke just to stay looking cute and comfy for the new season. has four great (and price-conscious) looks for mamas-to-be who want to stay trendy on a budget.

The Jeans

Our pick: Low-rise dark boot-cut jeans from Old Navy; $32.50

A great pair of maternity jeans can be pretty hard to come by, but a pair that just so happens to be comfy, stylish, and affordable all at the same time? Nothing short of a miracle. We say invest in a nice boot-cut style in a dark wash — it’ll flatter your ever-expanding rear way more than any pair of leggings or skinny jeans might. We love this pair of Old Navy jeans, which goes for less than $33, has a built-in bellyband for maximum comfort, along with plenty of stretch.

The Top

Our pick: Dolman-sleeve maternity top from Gap Maternity; $44.50

Just because you’re sporting a bump doesn’t mean you always have to stick to Empire-waist shirts. And it doesn’t mean you have to shy away from donning attention-getting colors, either. Do stay away from big prints, but go for eye-catching solids and tops with interesting shapes, like this simple one from Gap Maternity in purple candy. We’re big fans of the dolman sleeves, which bell out to expertly camouflage arms that may be less-than-perfectly toned (a definite bonus!).

The Dress

Our pick: Drape-front jersey dress from Old Navy; $29.50

This season, draping is back in a big way. We love this dress from Old Navy, with its unique front draping, flattering V-neck, and tieback sash. Paired with a light cardigan, you can work this look anywhere — no matter if you’re headed to Thanksgiving with the fam or meeting up with a friend.

The Jacket

Our pick: Pleated ruffle jacket from Liz Lange Maternity; $45

Forget throwing on a big, bulky jacket now that the weather’s changing. Even though you’re a few sizes bigger now, you can still pull off the right fitted coat. This flattering cut from Liz Lange Maternity is cute, functional, and a real statement piece. And going with a bold — but not too bright — color, like this deep purple, is way more fun than the same old black jacket you wear every year. You won’t be pregnant forever (thankfully!), so have fun with it.

For pregnancy and parenting advice, tools, and more, visit


What’s new and cool in shoes for kids

Posted by Lorain County Moms

By Rod Stafford Hagwood, Florida Sun Sentinel

OK, Mom and Dad, this is what your kid finds fabulous in footwear this fall … and how much it’s going to set you back.

We canvassed shoe stores and online retailers to find out what’s kicking in kicks in order to make the whole process a little bit easier for you.

Flats/ballet shoes/slip-ons: From prim Mary-Janes to plaid slip-ons, there are classic preppy touches added to the casual ease of these don’t-try-so-hard comfy shoes.

Hightops/sneakers: This is where the artistry of shoe design shows up. From dazzling sequins to colorful cartoon prints, the embellishment is bumped up a few notches this season. And Back-to-School means old school. “From skater sneaks like Skechers to Converse and Nike hightops, neons are in,” said Julia Kreibich, founder of Miami-based, which follows shoe trends. “Gray is the new basic. Gray with neon purple, gray with neon orange. Anything bright and shiny. It’s a kickback for kicks, to the ’80s and early ’90s.”

Loafers/boat shoes: Of course the nautical boat shoe is perfect for Florida, but now waterproofing technology — as seen with Geox and Crocs — is de rigueur for our water-rific lifestyle. Loafers have a sleeker, more sophisticated look to them, with plenty of high gloss.

Ankle boots/rain boots/boots: Is biker chic back? Well, from the ankle down it is. Add some ’80s edge and sharp silhouettes to the rivets and studs and you have foot fabulousness. Rain boots are neon-bright, while chunky lug boots and lace-up wedge boots continue to be popular with goth-metal-hardcore-loving boys and girls.

Moccasins/wedges: Ah, the contradictions of youth. “Younger kids want to stand out and be more unique,” said’s Kreibich. “But they also totally follow their celebrity idols. Miley Cyrus wore moccasins, so young girls see this and now moccasins are hot.” Kreibich added that wedges and — yes — heels are showing up on younger and younger girls.