Do The Polka // Wrap Top + Levi's

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper at New York Fashion Week 2019.
If there's one thing I've learned in this industry, it's that on-trend looks don't have to cost an arm and a leg. Sometimes a single new item can completely reinvent an outfit. Take this ensemble for example. Everything I'm wearing here is AT LEAST one season old...except my top.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing the best jeans for petite women.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's fall makeup look with dark lipstick.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's fall denim outfit idea.
Let's be clear, while every piece, excluding my top, may be "old" by fashion standards, they still look relatively fresh, which means in the REAL WORLD, they may not actually be that old. I get it. But fashion does move fast, so typically, if something is a few seasons old, that can be the difference between on-trend and old-news.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's fall date night outfit idea.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing hand-painted heels from Naturalizer.Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing white Naturalizer pumps.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's fall street style.
I decided to add this top to my arsenal because I instantly knew it would upgrade my favorite Levi's jeans (almost a year old). I was also attracted to its retro flair, which I thought would perfectly complement the cat-eye shades (two years old) and white pumps (6 months old) I already owned. 
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing a polka dot wrap top.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing a silver Rebecca Minkoff top handle purse.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing Levi's wedgie jeans.
My fiancé and I are currently in saving mode, which means I've been creatively challenged with making some of my "old" pieces feel new and modern again. The key lies in how you style them. I've also learned that strategically purchasing a FEW new items here and there can do wonders for your entire wardrobe — no overhaul necessary.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's fall outfit inspiration with jeans and a wrap top.
[top: Nordstrom // jeans: Levi's wedgie fit // heels: Naturalizer // purse: Rebecca Minkoff (I also like this one) // sunglasses: Urban Outfitters // hoop earrings: fine jewelry courtesy of my mom (similar pair here) // lip color: Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in "Chaos"]

At the top of every season, scope out the trends and do your research. I keep my pulse on the fashion world through Instagram, people watching IRL, constantly refreshing the "New Arrivals" pages on my favorite brands' sites, and reading posts from Who What Wear and POPSUGAR.

Next, make a list of your MUST-HAVE pieces. This should consist of a few items that encompass your favorite current trends — pieces you know will completely elevate everything else you pair with them. This is the hardest part because it takes some serious thought. My first instinct every other season is to declare I need new EVERYTHING, but when you're on a budget, you have to think objectively. Be honest with yourself!

Once you know what you need to feel stylish for the season ahead, take your time scouring the internet/the world for a good deal. Patience is key here, people. For affordable, fashion-forward items, I love MANGO, TopShop, Zara, Bloomingdales' Aqua line, and Nordstrom's Halogen line.

Remember, a fantastic, on-point pair of heels or a statement-making top is oftentimes ALL YOU NEED to take your older items to the next level 👌

// SHOP //


Third Time's a Charm // Bike Shorts + Denim Jacket

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

NYC fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing a fall bike shorts outfit.
You didn't think I'd let summer end without featuring my beloved bike shorts one more time, did ya? I'm not lying when I said I've been living in these guys since July. For pre-fall, I'm styling them with oversized top-layers and thick, cozy crop tops. (check out looks 1 & 2 for more inspo).
NYC fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's 2019 fall fashion.
NYC fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing a personalized screen-print denim jacket.
NYC fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's 2019 fall fashion ideas.
Denim jackets have a way of adding an effortless, cool vibe to any outfit. Whether you throw 'em over your shoulder or wear 'em fully buttoned, they're ideal for this transitional time of year. 
NYC fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's bike short outfit idea.
NYC fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing the gold layered necklace trend.
NYC fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing her favorite high-waisted bike shorts.
Monochrome black with denim on top and a purple pop of pastel makes for an easy look that's casual, on-trend, and flattering. Did I mention comfortable? In high-waisted, stretchy bike shorts, you'll feel as if you're wearing sweatpants!
NYC fashion blogger Kathleen Harper showing how to wear bike shorts for fall.
NYC fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing an Urban Decay naked 3 palette makeup look.
NYC fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's denim jacket outfit idea.
[jacket: Levi's (personalized) // top: Aritzia (I also like this one) // shorts: American Eagle (super similar pair here) // sneakers: Adidas // purse: Rebecca Minkoff (I also like this one) // sunglasses: Ray-Ban // gold chocker 1: Uncommon James // gold chocker 2: Uncommon James // gold pendant necklace: Alexis Bittar (I also like this one) // ear jackets: gift (I also like this pair) // eyeshadow: Urban Decay Naked3 palette // lip color: Nars Powermatte Lip Pigment in "American Woman"]

Fall may be quickly approaching, but I'm getting as much mileage as I can out of these bike shorts. Next, I plan on wearing them with an oversized sweatshirt. ...You may just have to pry them off my cold, goosebump-ridden legs once winter hits!   

// SHOP //


Snake Bite // Teal Heels + Python-Print Dress

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing a snake print dress for fall 2019.
At this point, animal print is no longer a trend. It's a classic. And this classic is more popular than ever as we head into fall. From python to leopard to zebra, the wild must-have is THE neutral to own now. ...Consider me bitten by the animal-print bug — and snake in particular is especially chic and powerful!
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing an animal print dress for fall 2019.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing teal heeled sandals from Zara.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing an Anthropologie python print dress.
For a bold, unexpected twist, step into a jewel-toned pair of heels. I've had these guys for a few years now and they never fail to add a quirky burst of polish — even when paired with the most unlikely of outfits. When mixed with animal print, the result feels super fresh and modern.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing Kylie Cosmetics metal liquid lipstick in Reign.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's 2019 fall street style.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing a cute fall dress from Anthropologie.
While I love a crossbody — hello convenience and comfort — I've been seeing shorter purse straps lately. It seems the over-the-shoulder strap is making a comeback, and I can't say I hate it. The effortless, glam vibes are definitely there, and I predict we'll be seeing a lot more of this silhouette in the near future!
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing an animal print outfit in fall 2019.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper showing 2019 fall style trends.
As soon as I tried this dress on back in the spring, I knew it was special. It fit like a dream and I instantly felt incredible in it. We're talking pre-proposal here, but at that point in time, I had a hunch Antonio would be popping the question at some point this year. So I bought the dress and thought, "This may just be THE dress!" 

Flash forward a month or two and it WAS the dress I wore when he proposed on May 25th :) Obviously it's now even more of a special piece and I feel a whole host of amazing feelings every time I wear it. 
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing the snake print trend in 2019.
[dress: Anthropologie (sold out, but I also like this one) // heels: Zara (old, but I also like this pair) // bag: Carlo Fellini (vintage, but I also like this one) // dangle earrings: Alexis Bittar (similar pair here) // stud earrings: Diamonds Doing Good (similar pair here) // gold bangle: Alex & Ani // lip color: Kylie Cosmetics Metal Matte Liquid Lipstick in "Reign" (sold out, but I also like this option)

Antonio and I snapped these photos just over a week ago, and IT WAS INCREDIBLY HOT. I don't know if you can tell from these photos, but I was practically melting in the heat. And don't get me started on the horrendous humidity — why do you think my hair is in a bun ;) ? 

But just like that, it feels like fall is coming in hot, or err cold! Who's ready for jacket season? ...and more importantly, FASHION MONTH season? 

// SHOP //


Risky Business // Bike Shorts + Oversized Blazer

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's bike shorts outfit ideas.
Suiting but make it sexy. On the fall runways earlier this year, business-with-sex-appeal was a standout trend, and now that fall's upon us, there's no better time to try it out for yourself (hint: it's easy and FUN)! 
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper showing a chic way to wear bike shorts.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing a bike shorts work outfit.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing 2019 and 2020 jewelry trends.
A do-it-all blazer is the stylish extra layer you needed yesterday. It never fails to add tomboy edge to any look and, bonus, it's universally flattering! You can literally throw one on over anything and feel instantly put together. 

The variation I'm wearing here is one of my very favorite pieces in my entire closet. I wear it with everything from skinny jeans and a tee to a slinky slip dress. In winter, it looks ultrachic layered over a solid turtleneck.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper sharing ways to wear bike shorts.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing a bike shorts and blazer outfit.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing an Anthropologie top handle purse.
Style tip: think of bike shorts as a modern, cooler alternative to a mini skirt. Throwing a blazer into the mix gives the look a refined feel. 
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's hot girls summer pic.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper in Soho.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's tube top outfit idea.
To prevent this trend from looking tacky, it's all about strategic coverage and playing with proportions. A long-sleeved blazer that covers your backside is key. So are extra high-waisted shorts that are not, under any circumstance, short shorts. Last but not least, keep your heel height modest and the design minimal. 
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's bike shorts outfit.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper sharing Soho photoshoot locations.
[blazer: Elizabeth & James (I also like this one) // tube top: Aritzia // bike shorts: American Eagle // heels: Who What Wear via Target (I also like this pair) // purse: Anthropologie (I also like this one) // sunglasses: Urban Outfitters (similar pair here) // necklace: Uncommon James // earrings: vintage via my mom (I also like this pair) // lip color: Tarte's Tarteist Lip Paint in "Delish"

I felt like a million bucks in this ensemble. I wore it over a recent weekend this month where I took a trip to the hair salon (shoutout to Mia Wagner Salon), explored Soho, got milkshakes with Antonio, and ate late-night, rooftop pizza with friends. 

Even more recently, it's been too hot for a blazer, but once it cools down just a tiny bit, I will most definitely revisit this look. I love the empowering mixture of style, confidence, sexy, and business that this outfit exudes. It's a 10 for me! 

// SHOP //


Birthday Star // Turning 27 + Black Slip Dress

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper holding star-shaped balloons from the Upper Westside.
This week I'm celebrating another trip around the sun! My 27th birthday is Saturday, Aug. 17 and you better believe I'm escorting 26 out with a bang — stars in all. 
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's birthday photo shoot in Washington Square Park with balloons.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper sharing one of the best New York City photoshoot locations.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing her 2019 birthday dress.
I wish you guys could see the subtle rainbow glitter on my dress. The sparkles take it to the next level, making it completely special-occasion approved! But whether you can see the shine or not, a slip dress like this one is the perfect blend of sexy and sophisticated. The double slits are especially flattering and fun.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper doing a balloon photoshoot.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's birthday photos in New York City's Washington Square Park.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's Washington Square Park photo shoot in the Summer of 2019.
I'm all for dressing up on your special day — whatever kind of day that may be. For me, a birthday outfit is an empowering way to celebrate and ensure you feel your best. After all, what's better than feeling like a star? And what better way to feel like a star than dressing like one? It's called confidence, baby...and sometimes clothing can make all the difference!
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper wearing a sexy black slip dress.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper sharing how to take cute photos with balloons.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's photo shoot with star-shaped balloons.
Full disclosure: I bought this dress three years ago, and although I loved it, I never felt fully comfortable in it. After wearing it once and shooting it for this post (umm can you believe how long my hair is?), I put it in the back of my closet and pretty much forgot about it. 

Now, three years later, I've developed more confidence in myself (and not going to lie, I also toned up and lost weight), and I was so excited when I put this LBD back on and felt incredible in it! What a feeling! It's THAT feeling you want to accompany you during any and all of your big days. Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper sharing her 2019 birthday outfit idea.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's New York City balloon photo shoot.
Nyc fashion blogger Kathleen Harper's Washington Square Park photo shoot with balloons.
[dress: & Other Stories (old, but I also like this one) // heels: Zara (old, but I also like these) // earrings: Ann Taylor (I also like this pair) //lip color: Urban Decay Vice Lipstick in "Backtalk" // balloons: Balloon Kings]

Every year I look forward to doing a fun, personality-filled birthday photo shoot with balloons. For me, it's the perfect way to celebrate a new year and make the milestone that much more memorable. This year, Antonio and I headed to Washington Square Park and arrived by 8:30 am on a Sunday in order to capture it essentially empty. 

And how about these balloons? Last year I was all for tonal, metallic vibes, but this year I was feeling rainbow, sparkle, and pizzaz! It just goes to show that no matter how "old" you get, you're never too old for whatever makes your heart sing. JUST DO YOU :) ...and if that means buying the rainbow balloons and parading them around NYC, then do it! And do it boldly. 

// SHOP DRESS //