Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Years Eve


I hope that everyone has a FABULOUS, FASHIONABLE, and SAFE New Years Eve! 
See you in 2009!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Rants, Raves and Red Soles

I'll start with the Raves from my day. . .which would be that Saks Fifth Avenue is currently having a FANTASTIC sale! Currently almost all reduced items are an additional 50% off! This is a perfect time to score a DVF Wrap Dress for less that $100. . .just make sure that the item is something you can hold on to for a while! Check out some of my favorite finds for under $100 below!


Now on to my Rants. . .although I was thoroughly impressed with the sales at Saks today, I will say that I was UNIMPRESSED with their customer service skills! This is the second time I have visited the Saks store at Tysons Galleria in McLean, Virginia and not received any help from a sales person! I was in the store for 25 minutes, weighted down by clothes across 3 different departments, and not ONE salesperson approached me! When I'm paying Saks Fifth Avenue prices, I expect a little respect and help from the sales department!

And now. . .the Red Soles! This was the single best moment of my shopping experience (followed by sadness as they were the wrong size!) I stumbled across the most glorious pair of Christian Louboutin Yoyospina shoes (size 37) on sale for $150!!!! Yes, you read that right, Louboutin's for under $200!!! If they hadn't been peep toe, I seriously might have cut off my toes to fit them in the shoes! The sales lady searched the Saks system and no other Saks in country had these shoes in my size! (38.5 or 39) :(  



I managed to find this pair on EBAY. . .but they aren't quite my size. . .and are still $375! Anyone that knows me knows  that Louboutins are my FAVORITE! Look for a post later this week about me getting to MEET Mr. Louboutin and having him sign a pair of my shoes!!!!! (all time best day ever!)

Monday, December 29, 2008

Shopping the Holiday Sales!

It's back to work after the busy holidays. . .and for me. . .this means battling the massive crowds at the mall! The struggling economy is also making this year the BEST for after Christmas sales! Every store I have been in has had amazing sales, plus additional percentages off! But don't fall into the trap of impulse buying. . .and don't get overwhelmed by crowds and messy racks.

Here are a few tips to help make your shopping trip a little easier from parking to checking out:

1. Wear comfortable clothes: this doesn't mean to show up in pajamas. . .but choose casual jeans, flats and a sweater. Make things simple to change in and out of to make trying on clothes easier. 
2. Avoid parking decks: parking decks are a mad house around the holidays. . .instead try to find a parking spot in one of the outside lots near a department store.

3. Leave your coat in the car: prepare for stores to be hot and crowded, a coat is just an extra layer to have to hold onto. Suck it up for the walk into the mall, and you will be glad to not have to keep up with a bulky coat.

4. Pack a snack: The food court will be a zoo during sale season, so be sure to pack a protein bar to hold off any hunger pains! Also be sure to pack a bottle of water to stay hydrated in the heated stores!

5. Remain Calm: Don't get overwhelmed by crowded stores and messy racks. Take your time and tune out the crowds. Also, don't be discouraged by long lines for the fitting room or cash register. They tend to move pretty quick. 

6. Website shop: check out websites of stores before you shop to get an idea of some items you might be looking for! 

7. Don't get sucked in: Don't buy something just because it is on sale. If it is something you have been waiting to go on sale, buy it. Otherwise stick to items that you can wear now as well as into Spring. 

8. Know upcoming trends: By knowing what will be popular next season you can score some great sale items that you can wear longer. Check back later this week for my thoughts on what will be big for Spring!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

New Years for any budget!

Top designers set the trends for each coming season. Lesser known, mass producing designers then pull from these looks to create their collections. Although the designer look is typically more favorable than the cheaper creation, most budgets don't allow for designer wear. Here we have The Look, and The Look for Less - New Years Edition!


COST: approx. $32,000

Using this STUNNING Zac Posen Dress as inspiration, I created a beautiful look, coming in at top dollar. Even without the jewelry, this look still comes in at around $4000. 

The detailing on the dress draws the eye in and up to the face. I LOVE the way this dress hugs the body and creates interest. I selected this winter white Fendi coat as a good compliment with its sleek, clean lines. By selecting accessories that are bold, but not overbearing, the overall look is very chic and is sure to get a lot of attention on New Years!


This look is a great alternative to the previous, and much more budget friendly! The dress has many of the same characteristics as the Posen dress, pulling the eye in and to the face. Similarly, this coat has chic, clean lines and a hidden zipper so as to not compete with the dress. I'm a little iffy on this clutch, and may suggest a metallic fabric bag as an alternative. The shoes add a little sparkle, without being too overbearing! Wear this look with confidence New Years Eve and you are sure to win Best Dressed!

Although my favorite is obviously the more expensive look, the second look is beautiful too! If you budget allows, of course splurge on the first look, at least the dress and coat. However, most of us don't have an extra $4000 laying around for one night. The second look is beautiful too, and you will be SURE to turn a lot of heads when you walk in the door!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Posh Perfection

Victoria Beckham has become a fashion icon for the world, a walking advertisement of fashion perfection. Although some may criticize her shockingly thin frame, in my opinion Victoria Beckham (VB) is the epitome of style. In a world where jeans are quickly becoming accepted everywhere from the office to a cocktail party, VB runs around town in pencil skirts, 5 inch stiletto's and a matching Hermes Bag. 

On a recent trip to Milan with hubby David Beckham, VB managed to change into 3 equally glamorous outfits in a matter of 15 hours. These weren't just any outfits, but the latest looks from her dVb collection, ranging in price from $1000 to $3000. 

Outfit number 2 is a stunning strapless dress paired with simple accessories. I love the detailing around the hips of this dress! Although, it is certainly only meant for someone with Posh's perfect proportions! 

I am all about faux fur this season, and VB, an avid PETA supporter, sports a chic black faux fur bolero to complete her look.

Taking every detail into account when dressing her small frame, VB chooses beautifully tailored, form fitting, classic pieces and pairs them with stunning accessories. Most importantly VB takes risks in her clothes, not always choosing the best outfit, but that is what defines a true fashionista. 

Copy Posh's look by choosing silhouettes that flatter your frame and that are timeless pieces. Build upon it with chunky bangles and chic black leather gloves (which I love love love for winter!) Finish the look with a structured bag and sky high heels. 

Friday, December 19, 2008

Need a Christmas gift at 3am? No problem!


Typically around Christmas most stores have extended holiday hours. . .opening at 7am and closing at midnight. This year Macy's is taking it to a whole new level by staying open 24 hours a day, Friday, December 19 until Christmas Eve! While I'm not so keen on the idea of shopping in the wee hours of the morning, this would be a great way to avoid the holiday crowds.

Call your local Macy's to make sure that they are one of the stores participating in the 24 hour schedule before showing up at 3am ready to shop!

While you're at Macy's check out some of these great gift ideas for last minute gifts at a fabulous price!

For your Brother, Boyfriend or Husband:

For your Dad:

For your Mom:


Thursday, December 18, 2008

A void in Bryant Park this Spring


Every Spring and Fall celebrities, journalists and fashionistas flock to New York's Bryant Park for Fashion Week. Originally called Press Week, NYC Fashion Week began in 1943 as a small event for journalists, and has grown since then into an international event drawing thousands of people to the tents each year. Shows range from those of top American designers to newer up and coming designers. Between lighting, staging and accessories each fashion show runs up a bill of $100K to $200K +! 


right to left: Vera Wang, Betsey Johnson, Carmen Marc Valvo

It looks as if the economy has hit even the best of the fashion designers; recently Betsey Johnson, Carmen Marc Valvo and Vera Wang have all announced that they will not be showing at this Springs New York Fashion Week. Instead they will be holding a smaller, private show consisting of a guest list of 100 to 150 people.

This is a great loss for Brant Park this year, as all 3 of these designers draw a large crowd. Betsey Johnson's shows are known for their quarky, light-hearted feel; always pushing the boundaries of fashion. Let's hope things improve by the Fall, or we may see even more designers pulling out of the shows!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

I want it, and I want it delivered!!!

I just stumbled across the most amazing game at Shop Intuition: The Fashion Rule's Game. Created by the Margaret Maldonado Agency, The Fashion Rules Game tests the players knowledge about what is happening, past and present, in the world of fashion, celebrity and design.  This very well could be the Monopoly for fashionistas! Hopefully Santa will bring me this for Christmas! 


According to Shop Intuition's website: " This fashion trivia board game will delight fashionistas and style tyros alike. Fashion rules is a unique, fast paced, smart board game built around the love of all things relating to style. The board game tests player's knowledge what's happening, past and present, in the world of fashion, celebrity, design. Fashion Rules was created by the Margaret Maldonado Agency - the West Coast's most esteemed agency for wardrobe stylists, hair stylists, makeup artists, photographers, and up-and-coming designers. Includes four shopping bags, collectible high heels, scissors, sunglasses, mirror figurines and golden dice."


Of course the game comes with the semi-hefty price tag of $100. . . and as of yet I could not find it available on I hope the game doesn't disappoint!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Glitz, Glamour, SPARKLE!!

New Years Eve is just 2 weeks away, and many of my friends are still looking for that perfect outfit! For many, New Years Eve is the one time a year to dress up and go a little above and beyond any other night of the year.

This is the perfect look for any New Years occasion - from cocktail party, to dinner, to Times Square. Equally, this look is flattering to various figures! The ruffling in the top and the sequin shoes pull from two major style trends, without competing with one another. The simple color pallet allows all of the elements to flow together and the faux fur bolero is a chic, animal friendly, addition which completes this look!

Sequins have been popular this season, so New Years Eve definitely calls for some sparkle! Clothing this season comes with just a little sparkle, to full on sequins! Whichever you choose, follow these simple rules. . no. . . guidelines, to prevent a fashion disaster!

1. Lean toward sequins in Black, Gold or Silver. Wearing a skirt with hot pink sequins may be a little to 1980's disaster than chic and on trend.

2. Don't over-do it. If you choose a sequined top, pair it with a structured skirt or pant in a heavy fabric to balance the look.

3. Try incorporating a luxurious material, such as silk or velvet. Steer clear of cheap, stretchy fabrics which will make your outfit look cheap instead of chic.

4. DO: Sequin top OR Sequin dress OR Sequin Shoes OR Sequin Clutch
DONT: do sequins head to toe!

5. Remember Coco Chanel's Rule: Before leaving the house take a look in the mirror and remove one item. This will prevent you from looking over-done or too costume-y!

6. Have fun! Let loose and ring in 2009 in style!

Holiday Cheer - Purple

Purple had definitely been THE color for the Fall/Winter 09 Season. . . and it just so happens to be on of my favorite colors! I love the richness of the color, and how it compliments almost any skin tone. I have always loved purple and silver together for the holiday season. . .so I have selected some of my favorite pieces for holiday gatherings this year.

Be bold with a purple dress, or more subtle by using purple to accessorize your outfit. When accessorizing a purple dress try to pair it with metallic silver or gold that will make the dress pop, instead of black which is too close in color. Grey is also another beautiful compliment to purple, try grey boots or a grey coat.


Clockwise from top left:
1. Banana Republic Top 2. Soia & Kyo Coat
3. Tracy Reese Dress 4. Forever 21 Clutch
5. Tadashi Dress 6. Tracy Reese Cardigan
7. Christian Louboutin Pumps 8. Catherine Malandrino Dress
9. Carolina Amato Gloves 10. Nicole Miller Dress
Center: Victoria's Secret Dress

My absolute favorite is the Victoria's Secret Sweater Dress in the center. I love the sexy draping in the back, it takes a sweater dress to a new level. I also think the purple Silk Top from Banana Republic is beautiful for an office party or holiday dinner!

The best news about purple is that it isn't going anywhere anytime soon. Shades of lavender are popping up in new lines for Spring, and Tracy Reese's new spring collection is full of splashes of purple!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Holiday Cheer - Red

Do you have a holiday work party to go to? Maybe a cocktail party, or Christmas Eve dinner?

Typically when I am looking for an outfit for an event, I know what color I want to wear, and set out to find something that works. We all know that when you are looking for something you can never find it. . .so I thought I would post some ideas of holiday attire by color! Keep checking back over the next day or two and I will post all of my favorite findings for this years holiday soiree's!


As a general rule, I like to steer clear of wearing red to holiday parties. . .it's much too cliche and expected. This year is the exception to that rule. Red is my predicted "must have" color for Fall/Winter 2010. . .so in anticipation, I will be wearing it throughout this winter season.



Welcome to The Style Maison Blog! I am Lauryn Prattes, creator of (which is a work in progress, I hope to launch by mid-January!)

My goal for The Style Maison and The Style Maison Blog is to help share my knowledge of fashion and style with you, my reader. Some of you may be budding fashionistas, others may have no fashion knowledge at all. I want to offer something for everyone, every lifestyle and every budget. 

A little bit about myself. . . .I love travel and studied in Paris for a summer, as well as traveled to London and Greece. I also completed an internship at Saks Fifth Avenue, learning the in's and out's of clothing, fashion and styling. Currently I am living in Atlanta and working as a personal fashion stylist. If you are interested in my services, please email me at: 

Please allow me to emphasize my passion is about style, and how it relates to current fashion. Not everything I post about is for everyone. Just because something is "trendy" does not mean it is meant for you, or really anybody for that matter. Fashion is art, it is personal, and not every piece is a masterpiece. 

Please comment or email me with any style questions or comments you might have! Looking for that perfect dress, or a specific shoe? Let me know and I'll do my best to find some options for you! You never know when another reader might be in need of the same thing!