Social Media: Friend, Follow, or Stumble


Chicago Blogger Network

Entries in Denim (20)


El-Yes: Sweater Weather

Grab your pumpkin spice latte... it's sweater weather!

Miss El-Yes is putting a feminine spin on a menswear inspired cardigan and button down shirt. Using sleek fabric and a trim fit, she really rocks the look. 

Crush it this Fall with these perfect pieces: 

Kate Spade Boucle Trim Cardigan (on sale!) for $178 in a beautiful green and blue combination

Brooks Brothers Fitted Non-iron Bold Stripe Dress Shirt for 2 for $159- my absolute FAVORITE button down shirts!

J Brand Mid-Rise Slim Leg Jean in Ignite for $191

Born Riley Flat in Navy Patent for $89.95- that's right... NAVY! I found a cute navy shoe!

* Thanks for the photo MS. Good sighting!



El-Buy: Ready for White

Last night, I had a dream about white pants.

In my fantasy, I was wearing white pants and my butt looked really good in them. Maybe this will be the summer that I can join the ranks of the fabulous leggy girls parading around town in their bleached slacks? If that is going to be true, I better get my bum to the gym. 

I seriously lust after this summery staple. I have day dreams of throwing on a pair with a bright tank and some fabulous metallic sandals. What, this outfit? I just grabbed it all as I dashed out of the house. It's positively casual. 


I think that I found my unicorn (white jeans that actually look good on me). The Gap 1969 mid-weight curvy jeans might be the ones that work. And for $59.95, I can afford to find out. 



El-No: Pants Problems

Lululemon pants are magical. 

They are woven by elves (relatives of the Keeblers) and contain mysterious butt slimming fibers. I don't know how they do it but they turn run-of-the-mill tushies into something extraordinary. 

But there are rules for these spellbinding workout pants. Simple rules that Miss El-No has broken. 

Workout pants are not regular pants. I repeat WORKOUT PANTS ARE NOT REGULAR PANTS.

You can wear them to workout or to slum it around on the weekend. You cannot wear them with knee high stiletto boots and a sexy top.  

Miss El-No, please get some real pants. How about these adorbs colorful jeans from the Gap? I love them!!! For only $69.95 you can stock up on the surf and fucshia colors. 




El-No: Sopa, Pipa, Yucka

Wikipedia is taking the day off today as a protest against internet censorship. Fight the good fight Wiki peeps!

While I understand the original idea behind these acts (to stop internet piracy and copyright infringement), the ridiculous amount of power given to companies and the insane reach of these acts is disturbing.  Imagine a world without user-generated content. Imagine a world without this (see above photo). 

Instead of censoring our words and thoughts, maybe the government could work on blackout exposed tushie cracks? I'm all for infringing on the right to bare your behind. Pull up your pants! 

Girlfriend needs some of these adorbs Joe's Jeans "Visionaire" High-waist Bootcut Jeans ($168). Oh, and a new shirt might be nice too. 

*Thanks for the photo JL

** Protect your rights. Go sign this petition



El-No: Mom Jeans Are The Devil's Work

Mom jeans have magical powers.

They have the amazing ability to turn a perfectly good bum into a disproportioned disaster. Check out the horribly placed pockets, the too tight/too short legs, and the saggy seat. These  should really get a Vegas floorshow or at least a chance to try out for America's Got Talent.

Don't believe me? Behold Miss El-No. Her mom jean encased tush is screaming to be freed from a tight stonewashed prison. Help me! I can't breathe! After all those years of Sweatin' to the Oldies, I'm totally perky!

How can something be saggy and tight? Exactly. That's right- the devil's work is involved.

I don't know where one buys these horrible pants. Good thing too, I'm tempted to set up a police blockade at the entrance to the store. 

In this case, mother doesn't know best. Please get this woman a new pair of pants. How about the Marilyn straight leg from Not Your Daughter's Jeans ($104)? These little babies will lift and shape all while helping Mom look on trend.

Now, how do we get her to ditch the running shoes and switch into something a little more attractive? 


El-No: Potawhat-the-f*ck?


What's Cherokee for "unattractive fringed footwear?"

I saw Miss El-Nava-ho in the airport while I was waiting for our delayed Chicago flight. Five hours of waiting gave me lots of time to ponder these kicks. I had to ask myself: What strain of peyote was she smoking when she got dressed this morning?

This unflattering denim hot pant/ calf hi 3 length moc combo is all wrong. The shoes add bulk and hit her leg at the calf (creating accidental cankles) while the shortie jorties stop at the widest part of her leg. This beautiful girl just added unnecessary weight to her frame... Not to mention that this ensemble seems unsafe to wear while dancing with wolves.

Don't worry Miss El-No, this is an easy fix (no smoke signal decoding required)!

I think that your spirit animal is a Raven, as in Raven Denim. Word on the street is that these jeans look amazing on all body types. You can wear this Eva pair ($185) with these adorable Minnetonka suede driving moccasins ($55) for a much more seasonally appropriate look. Top the ensemble with this geometric Onam cardigan ($148) from Anthropologie. 

Now, knock off the rain dance please. I need to get home to Chicago!





El-No: A Lid For Every Pot

Ahhhh love.

Romance is in the air. I’m glad they found each other. I'm sure it is hard to stumble upon someone else who loves uncomplimentary denim as much as holding hands.

Overalls have a long tradition in the USA- they were worn first as part of the military uniforms for the American militia during the Revolutionary War. Originally called Spatterdashers, overalls were popular for year round use (linen in the summer and wool in the winter). American denim extraordinaire Levi Strauss eventually used jean material and rivets to create the overalls that we know today. They became a staple in the tradition of industrial work in America.

Unless you are a factory worker, farmer, small child, or manual laborer, I would avoid overalls.  I don’t care that designers make overalls… Seriously, they are unflattering. Because there is no defined waistline, these overalls highlight the widest part of a women’s body- her hips. Yikes!

Maybe this $118 Sahara Romper from 7 For All Mankind would be a better choice? This eco-friendly denim option still provides the ease of a one piece but is much more attractive and creates a slimmer waist. 

*Thanks for the photo DF


El-No: Forever In Blue Jeans

I guess Miss El-No didn't get the memo about non-ironic denim. Here is the abbreviated version:

Multi-hued Canadian tuxedo humorously worn by hot hipster while she sips stout at Bangers and Lace = Good

Solid color denim on denim ensemble that involves Capri pants, white sneakers, and a ball game = Bad

Judging by the abundance of jean Capri pant outfits walking around this weekend, I *might* need to turn this into a television PSA or a Lifetime movie.

Just say NO to denim on denim (unless you frequent Happy Village).



El-No: A Tree Grows In Brooklyn

I recycle. I bring reusable bags to the grocery store. I even attempt to garden every Spring (which never works).

See? I like the earth.

But this foliage frock goes a little far. I think this New Yorker has seen one too many Monty Python skits…. Dude, there is no need to wear shrubbery.

Flaunt your flora lust in a more practical way.  Check out Boll Organic shirts. These eco-friendly button downs are made of organic cotton and do not contribute any chemical residue to the environment.

Go sustainable with pesticide free Sling & Stones denim. You can feel good about their fair labor practices and the company’s financial contributions to charities in Peru, Japan, and India (the countries from which the materials are sourced).

You can be environmentally friendly and fashionable. Green design for the win!


*Thanks for the photo ECH



El-Yes: Hot Pants

Chartreuse pants seem so wrong.

But Miss El-Yes’s pants were so right.

Yes, for some reason I found this near radioactive glow appealing. I couldn’t stop staring.

I loved how she paired these crazy slacks with a chocolate brown shirt and gold/chartreuse jewelry. I plan to pair chartreuse slacks with white and navy this summer. 

The color chartreuse was actually named after the French herbal liquor.  Originally distilled by monks, the drink is a glowing greenish yellow color. While I am not a fan of the beverage, I am a fan of the color.

You might get mistaken for “Mellow Yellow” this summer when you wear this cute chartreuse top from Zara for $39.99. Or you can really walk on the wild side with these Dyed Pretty acid green jeans for $89.



El-No: Viva la Canadienne (Or Not)

I have run out of cocktail dresses.

All of these Spring weddings, showers, and rehearsal dinners have left me in dire straits- this weekend I had to go back in the dress archives and pull out a LBD circa 2005. Yikes.

I popped into Macy’s last week to look through the cocktail dresses. But instead of an evening frock, I found this lovely Canadian tuxedo hiding in the Contemporary section. Is this what our Northern neighbors wear to weddings, eh?

Call in the Mounties! I need to make an arrest. Maybe I just don’t get it because I’m not Canadian? But I understand the appeal of poutine and I didn’t grow up with that.

I really don’t want to talk shiz aboot Matthew Williamson (yes, this is a designer denim disaster). Honestly, I think the reason this bothers me is because it is all one color and contains a vest. Ugly, eh?

Girlfriend likes a little contrast. Besides, denim came from French textile makers in the Nimes area (De Nime). I'll take my advice from the other side of the pond or from here in America (the land of Levi Strauss). I bet the ladies at Cityblue Denim could find me a more suitable denim look.


El-No: Flagrant Foul

Move over Derrick Rose (and go ice that ankle). Chicago has a new MVP.

The "Most Visible Panty-line" award goes to Miss El-No. I admire the team spirit but she needs to get rid of the tighty whitey skirt. Yes, it is May and sunny. While it may be time to fire up the grill, it is not summer. Reset the game clock and keep that white skirt in the closet until the end of the month.

In addition to the unseasonable color shoice, it appears that Miss El-No's Chicago pride is a size too small. No one needs to see your backboard!

Maybe she should try this Gap flounce skirt on for size? At $54.95, she'll have plenty of money left over to spend at the concession stands.






El-No: Totally Grand Lux

Nothing is more luxurious than a chain restaurant and a booty.

I saw Team El-No last night as I was leaving dinner with friends. Painfully tight pants and uncomfortable shoes made it hard for these ladies to get down the escalator. Too tight over-the-knee boots and acid washed jeans made it painful for me to watch.

Oy with the waddling.

I'm all for "beauty is pain," but not when it restricts your ability to function. I don't remember Sir Mix-A-Lot mentioning anything about painted on pants?

Baby's got back, but she also might end up with a UTI and a sprained ankle.

Wide leg pants and wedges to the rescue!

Check out these wide leg stunners from Rock & Republic for $187. Love them. I love them even more when they are paired with these MacAlister boots ($198 in dark pewter) or these Avenelle wedges ($198 in burnt orange) from J.Crew.


El-No: That’s Funny Honey 

It’s April Fools Day, but these jeggings are no joke.

Miss El-No is wearing GLOSSY black jeggings. The only way that this can end well is if she spills beer on herself at Cubs opening day. Maybe then she’ll have to change into something more matte?

Shimmer pants are never a good ideas but especially bad when in –egging form.

I propose a visit to the Cityblue Denim. Those denim divas would never let this shiny disappointment occur. Run don’t walk over to Wells St. I promise that they can fix this will a heavy dose of Springtime wide-leg jeans (can you even still buy jeggings?).



El-No: New Pants On Aisle 5

Apparently in the UK they sell clothing at the grocery store. You can pop over to the Tesco and pick up snacks and an outfit for your upcoming dinner party. Those lucky Brits get everything: A royal wedding, cool slang words, and superior supermarkets.

After seeing Miss El-No at our local Dominick’s, I wish that American grocery stores would get up to speed. 

While casually strolling through the bakery, I was momentarily blinded by a rainbow of light. The culprit was Miss El-No’s bedazzled denim. Sequin reflections danced across the fresh bread and muffins. Rhinestones mixed with sprinkles on the cookies. But the clear spangles weren’t the worst part. Upon closer inspection I discovered that these jeans were too tight and too bleached. It was a Dominick’s denim disaster.

Naturally, I followed her out the store so that I could get a picture.

Now if we were in London, Miss El-No would be able to make a quick swap into these Tesco F&F wide leg jeans or these super cute F&F white straight leg jeans. After her speedy switch-a-roo, she could ring up some mates to meet for a cuppa or head ‘round to the chippie. Lucky!


El-No: Skinny Jean Sell Out

Q: How many hipsters does it take to change a light bulb?

A:  It’s kind of an obscure number. You’ve probably never heard of it.

Hipsters are supposed to be a progressive and independent subculture with cool taste in clothing and music. So what’s with the skinny stall out? Tight pants for dudes have been “in” for years and frankly they seem dated.

Mr El-No, this look is no longer indie – you’re totally mainstream. Those pants are like the Vampire Weekend/ Black Keys of jeans.

Please just go get some straight-leg jeans. Your ankles look like they are suffocating. Soon they will be dead (along with your street cred). Try these straight-leg Diesel Krooley 73N Jeans for $180 from Urban Outfitters.


Guest Post By Susie Stylist- El-No: Grab the first thing and put it on

If I had all the money in the world aka was a high-paid movie celebrity, I would hire my stylist to come in every day and plan my outfits.  That or leave polaroids in my closets of ‘looks’ that would make the paparazzi swoon.  I would not, however, wander out of my house looking like this:

(photo courtesy of PopSugar)

Dear Ms. Garner,

Somewhere, Rachel Zoe (your stylist) is uttering the words ‘I Die’ and not because she’s proud.  It’s because she has literally died.  Of embarrassment. What in the El were you thinking?  Sure, you’re a mom on the go and your little cherubs are adorable, but the ill-fitting sweater, with the light-wash man jeans, tucked into an ankle-high motorcycle boot, a black pea coat all accessorized with a random blue handbag?  Blerg.  Let’s try this again.

Look your best,



Perhaps this Sweater from Modcloth for $30 

Paired with these Paige Denim Verdugo Jeggings from Shopbop for $179

Tucked into these Frye Enginer Boots for $208

All layered underneath this wool Pamela coat from Banana Republic for $200 

Accessorized with the Deux Lux Mercer Handbag for $93



El-No: Mr. Mom Jeans

Last year, there were a series of cautionary articles regarding the health hazards of tight jeans. Doctors and health care providers warned of fertility problems, bladder infections, nerve damage, and increased instances of blood clots.

Don’t believe me? Watch this shocking piece of investigative journalism by Kathy Lee Gifford and Tori Spelling.


I smell an Emmy.

Mr El-No, I think we have a 911 situation on our hands. The fit of these jeans has me concerned for your health. They are relaxed through the thigh but too fitted through the ankle, leg, crotch, and bum. Tori Spelling calls these “ball huggers.” I call them terrible.

When Levi Strauss popularized denim slacks during the Gold Rush, I doubt he had this aesthetic in mind. He created these durable trousers so that men would have reliable clothing to wear while digging around on their hands and knees. Always a leader in form and function, I am confident that Levi would be appalled.

Find a golden success with any of these options below:

The Slim Jim: For a subtle boot cut lean jean, try the 597 Low Square Boot Cut from Levi’s

The Athlete: For more muscular legs, try a relaxed fit like the Austyn from 7 for all Mankind

Mr Big and Tall: The original 501 from Levi’s comes in a shrink-to-fit fabric that makes this jeans cling to all the right places while gliding over problem areas. This great jean is available in extended sizes and is a great classic wardrobe staple.

For The Average Joe: Check out a straight leg five-pocket style like the Viker from Diesel


El-No: Jackson Pollock Jeans 

Don’t you hate when you accidentally put bleach in with your dark load of laundry? I haven’t made that mistake since college. (That little mishap is why yours truly became bffs with the Laundry Service senior year).

Miss El-No was dancing up a storm in her bleach-splattered jeggings over the weekend. Could I be seeing this right? Maybe the wine was talking? Nope. They were real and almost as amazing as this Mayor Daley news.

Enough with the overly distressed jeans. This is just a walking advertisement for Clorox.

To be fair, this fashion misstep isn’t totally her fault.

It can be traced back to the edgy French designers who took the creative helm of two of my favorite couture houses. Historically, the French houses of Balmain and Balenciaga produced elegant and feminine pieces. But year after year of the same can be boring. So, like the final scene in Grease, these houses got tough grrrl makeovers.

In 1997, a 25 year old Nicolas Ghesquiere became the head of Balenciaga. In 2005, Paco Rabanne alum Christophe Decarnin was brought on board to freshen up Balmain. Both designers were charged with making the brands relevant, edgy, and hip.

One trend that has graced both runways is the bleach-splatter rocker jean. Balenciaga showcased a dark and graphic version of this look in Fall 2007. Balmain exhibited a more restrained quiet version of this look in Summer 2009. Personally, I am not a fan. Do you hear me French designers? Ces jeans est laid!

Fashion cycles moved forward, and this fad rotated through all levels of retailers. The fashion fad cycle is winding down and this look is now being sold in stores where trends go to die.

Both Ghesquiere and Decarnin have moved on to new ideas.

I vote that we ditch the splatter and join them.


El-No: Tough Cuff 

Batten down the hatches! There’s a storm brewing. Hurricane Earl is on the way!

Judging by her flood length jeans, I can only imagine that Miss El-No has been watching the Weather Channel. She is stocking up on lobster rolls (delish!) and bracing for the projected Labor Day weather.

Oy with the enormous cuffs and the Gorton’s fisherman vibe!

As a petite lady, I know that finding off the rack denim with a wearable inseam can be a challenge. Sometimes a girl needs to cuff. But this foot long cuff extends all the way past the knees and consequently breaks up her leg in a rather unflattering way.

Go visit a tailor or better yet, buy some ankle length denim. Called a “house boy” pant in the 1950s, this slim and cropped silhouette has been popular for years. Remember Audrey Hepburn in Funny Face?

As we are transitioning into fall, I suggest pairing your cropped denim with some beautiful flat ballet shoes or a kitten heel. Add on a crisp button down shirt or cozy sweater and you have a September style stunner.

Looking for some one-on-one denim guidance? Pop into Old Town’s Cityblue Denim for some help.

Or, check out my favorite ankle length denim options:

Skinny Ankle Jeans from Vince for $235

Major High Rise Skinny Black Pants from J Brand for $187

Praise Relaxed Super-Stretched Jeans from CJ by Cookie Johnson for $163

Cropped Skinny Jeans in Black from Gap for $69.50

* Love this reader submitted photo from DC!

** Don't forget to enter the Fall Fashion $1000 Contest. It takes just a moment and is such fun!