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DIYStyle Instant Swim Cover-Up

by Cindy Cummins July 30, 2012

How often have you wished for a cute and sexy cover-up….something fitting for both poolside as well as grabbing a nice lunch, dining inside? At this time of year with all of us headed out for beach vacations, this “In an Instant” wrap style cover-up is just the thing. Inspired by a similar style at our fav lingerie boutique, our DIY version can be customized to match YOUR style and swimsuit.


Best of all, there are no complicated sewing skills involved, as there are only a couple of edges to turn under and stitch (straight stitch on a sewing machine or by hand). With the right knit fabric this drapey wrap has the front and hem edges left unfinished—knits do not ravel! Or, if you want to make a similar version from a beach towel (great for the littler girls) the towel edges are already pre-finished.




Supplies Needed:
¾ yard of soft polyester or rayon knit fabric, 60” wide
1 1/2 yard of 3/8” wide ribbon or cord for “straps”
Matching sewing thread



1. Measure the distance between your arms outstretched (get a friend to help with a tape measure). This is how wide you will cut your fabric. This is the part that will wrap around you. Trim off any excess fabric from the 60” width to match this measurement. Example: Allyce measured 58”” with her arms outstretched. So we trimmed 2” off of our 60” wide fabric to be 58” wide.


2. Measure the length from right above your bust (where a strapless dress or top would hit) to the length you want the wrap to be. We did ours so it hit about 6” above the knee. Trim off any excess from the 27” or ¾ yard length so that it is the desired finished length. Our trimmed fabric was 58” x 26”.


3. Grab a 7-8” saucer from the kitchen cabinet to use as the armhole template. On upper right and left corner, mark 5” in on top and 7” down on side. Place saucer over the upper right and upper left corner. Using about ¼ of the saucer edge, align the saucer with the top and side markings and trace an arc. Trim following the markings, creating the armhole area. (Photos 1 & 2)



4. Using the same saucer as template, place saucer over the lower right and left corners and use saucer to mark and round the bottom edges. Trim following the markings. Note: trim as neat as possible—this IS your finished hem edge! (Photos 3 & 4)


5. On armhole edges, turn under ¾” and pin in place, stretching fabric as needed to make a casing or tunnel for the straps to thread into. (Photo 5)


6. Using the straight stitch on your sewing machine stitch close to the unfinished edge, secure both ends with backstitching. If you do not have a sewing machine you can stitch this part by hand, taking small running stitches, and knot the threads at each end. (Photo 6)


7. Create the straps from ribbon, cable cord or other strap type trims and cord—use your creativity here! Cut the trim into two equal pieces. Using a safety pin, thread the trim thru the casing tunnels you just stitched for the arm holes. Tie the trim ends together in an overhand knot, trim the ends close to the knot. Turn the strap so that the knot is hidden back into the casing and adjust the gathers. Note: You can adjust the straps shorter if you need them after trying on, just knot again and trim. (Photo 7)


8. To wear, hold cover-up behind you, arms outstretched. Bring one side around to your front slipping arm into strap. Bring opposite side across front, slipping other arm into strap. Adjust gathers and draping, and Viola! Instant cover-up!


Cindy Cummins of has been designing, sewing, creating and crafting for what seems like forever! As the “Mother Hen” to the group of DIYStyle’s Creative Chicks, she leads the flock in whipping up easy, fun,  and on-trend fashion DIY projects. Check out DIYStyle on Facebook.


Summer 2012 Wedding Hair Trends

by Vanessa Barone July 23, 2012

Your big day is just around the corner and you’re starting to hear those wedding bells chime. Next on your to-do list is a trip to the salon! Get ready for the mane event with a recap of this season’s wedding hair trends from Hair On The Avenue stylist Kelly Araujo.


Retro Glam: Old Hollywood hairstyles continue to dominate on both the runway and red carpet, all the way to the aisles of love. “Soft and sultry, retro ‘do’s truly epitomize femininity and glamour” notes hairstylist, Kelly Araujo. And dare we say they ooze a little sex appeal?


Boho Queen: Channel your inner flower child and adorn your principle part with a crown of nature’s blossoms. Paired with a loose curl, this understated look completes an outdoor wedding atmosphere and serves as a great alternative to jeweled accessories.



Textured Tresses: Give your soft, textured updo a braid boost. Woven strands are a summer cornerstone and can add a subtle hint of individuality to your I-do hairdo.


Ballerina Bun: For the fashion savvy bride who wants to incorporate her trendy tendencies, the high bun is a safe bet for the big day. “This twist on a traditional style maintains modernity without going overboard”.




Keep it Classic: Chignon’s have withstood the test of time as they provide a simple, streamlined look. However ladies, do not underestimate their reliability: “Chignon’s are incredibly versatile, suiting a wide array of bridal looks. While the front is typically polished, there is room to accessorize and modify the back of the style”.


Above all, stick to a style that best represents you. Trends may come and go, but the album is here to stay!


By Venessa (Hair styled by Kelly Araujo, Hair On The Avenue)






Self Tanning 101

by Keltie Colleen July 16, 2012


When I was in high school I was really hot. I mean it. I had over bleached hair, Guess jeans and a perfect tropical tan. (I should mention that I went to high school in Northern Canada where 9 months of the year we lived in a freezing cold, snowy wonderland.) I was extra hot because I spent 22 minutes everyday after school inside my local tanning  studio working on my perfect tropical tan.


You know how the saying goes... “If I only knew then, what I know now.”


Let’s face it, the suns rays make us age...and aging sucks. The sun causes your skin to do all kinds of ugly things like get wrinkles and sun spots, and can also lead to scary stuff like skin cancer. The worst part about it is that none of the damage is instant. You can be a sun worshiper for years, and then one day wake up with skin that looks like it belongs on a leather purse. The only way to stay looking young to is avoid the sun completely. Of course, this means skipping out on your own perfect tropical tan, or spending a ton of money to have a machine “spray tan” you with some orange paint that only lasts a few days.


I am a big believer in an at home self-tan. I wanted to share my secrets to a great in home tan because there are thousands of products out there and I have pretty much tried them all (I have the horrible photos to prove it). Remember, always wear sunscreen on your face. I wear SPF 70 everyday. Your older self will really thank you for it!


One final thought, unless you are a unicorn please do not use a self-tanning product that has chunks of glitter in it. Glitter is a sure fire way for everyone to figure out that you tanned at home and have not been vacationing in the south of France on your yacht! Say no to glitter tan-o-holics!!



A Few Tips Before You Start:


- Always shower and exfoliate before applying a self-tanner.


- Remember to WASH YOUR HANDS after you apply the tanner.


- Take your time when applying the tanner and make sure that the product is applied evenly.


- Run around your house naked for 20 minutes after you apply to tanner to make sure that it dries evenly and doesn’t ruin your clothing.


 - Apply tanner all the way into your hairline.


 - Never apply a self-tan the night before an important meeting or event. If something goes wrong you want a day to be able to fix it!




Four Products I Love:


1.  Kiehl’s Sun Free Tanning Formula

I love this product because it’s very natural, smells great and is a light consistency so it doesn't streak the way a thick cream does. It's natural color just gives your skin a healthy glow, and not a “hi, I just did a self-tan” look.


2. Adonia Bronzing Glow™ Self Tanner

I love this at home spray tanner because it’s really easy to get a streak free tan. You spray a small amount onto your skin and then rub it in. It’s a half oil and half serum mix and is super light on the skin. I know many of my friends that are dancers on Dancing With The Stars swear by this tanner.


3. St. Tropez Bronzing Mousse

I love that this product comes with an applicator mitt because it’s always a challenge for me to not end up with “tanner hands” after I self tan at home. St. Tropez is a beautiful color and is so lightweight you don’t feel it on your skin at all. I also think that St. Tropez is the longest lasting at home tan that you can get.


4. Lorac Tantalizer

You know when you see celebs on the red carpet and their leg skin is shimmery, tanned and seemingly perfect. Many times, it’s actually body make-up. My favorite is Lorac. This is not a self-tan but a cream that can be applied until your next shower that will give you a tan for the night, plus some shimmer. It’s perfect for a night out, when you are rocking a minidress. Just be careful because it will come off on your clothes when you sweat (ie. don’t wear white!)



By Keltie Colleen is a blogger/author. You can check out her blog on Buzznet and you can "Like" her Facebook page for a free chapter of her book Rockettes, Rockstars and Rockbottom

Embrace your Geekness Week: Geek Fashion

by Remington Ready July 9, 2012

There was a time not so long ago when geeks had nothing to do with fashion (and a time even before that when they were mainly associated with carny acts, but we won't go back quite that far today!). Just a decade or so ago, the term identified an individual who was extremely intelligent, whose employment was likely associated with computers, and who was probably a touch socially awkward. Style in relationship to geeks was a non starter. No one cared much about what they wore, except to make fun of an errant zipper or tape holding together a pair of black-framed glasses.




Today, geeks have claimed an important place in our culture, and what they wear does not go unnoticed. But geeks approach style in a completely different way from the average fashionista. From Steve Jobs to Mark Zuckerberg, making a single sartorial statement is their fashion strategy. They make a choice and stick with it: black turtleneck and jeans, hoodie and  cargo shorts, respectively. It's about practicality, efficiency, and consistency. And as much as they might deny it, it's also about style.



The clothing you—or anyone else from your mom to Bill Gates—wears has an inherent style, because you chose it. You observed it, you summed up how you would feel in it and how people would perceive you in it, You decided weather you liked the color, if you needed maybe a smaller size, and if you identified with the logo or the label. For sure some folks--those who have more than two principal items of clothing in rotation--spend more time deciding such things. But in all cases, a style is communicated. Even the geeks of yore exhibited a style, even if it was one that most people considered to be generally bad.



Silicon Valley angel investor Chris Sacca is my favorite example of the singular geek fashion phenomenon. He wears a fancy cowboy shirt every day of the week. That way, he says, he saves time deciding what to wear. It's always a cowboy shirt! And he looks darn good in them. Efficiency might be his main goal, but you can be sure Mr. Sacca is making a fashion statement—an unwavering and consistent one—in his investor meetings.


by Kristen Philipkoski,




Star-spangled Spectacular: The Ultimate Guide to 4th of July Style

by Kelly Glenn July 1, 2012

From BBQs to pool parties, fireworks to—oh yeah, our nations independence--there is so much to celebrate this Fourth of July. 


Now, just to get it out of the way—can we all agree that the 4th of July being on a Wednesday is not the most ideal situation? That, of course, doesn’t take away all the fun. Even though we have to go to work the next day, it simply means we have to have THAT MUCH more fun looking fabulous so we can tell our friends about it at work the next day.


So whether you’re spending the day grilling at the BBQ or chilling by the pool, here are some fun ways to show your American spirit and celebrate the holiday in style
(and really, lets be honest—I love summer, and I love holidays—any excuse to dress in theme and I’m already there.)


While wearing the patriotic red, white and blue isn’t completely mandatory for 4th of July celebration, I definitely believe in throwing in a few small touches of all three colors into your ensemble.. because really—what other time of the year can you wear all three colors and not look like you’re wearing a costume?


To take the guesswork out of figuring out what to wear, I’ve put together three different style options that will work depending on what your plans are for the day. As always, feel free to mix and match elements of each to find your perfect outfit.


1) BBQ Champion -This outfit perfect for a hot summer BBQ. Pair a blue check or plaid top ( with some (all-American) denim shorts ( for a laid back chic. Pair it with some cute red accessories like these red converse ( and red shades ( and you’re ready for that watermelon, corn on the cob and owning the three-legged race.



2) Everybody in the pool - Ah, the pool party. If there were any place I’d want to be this 4th, it would definitely be by the pool. Be pool ready with a striped bikini paired with some red denim shorts ( and a chic beach tote ( and a pair of cute wedge sandals. You could also opt for a chic cover-up, and of course don’t forget the hat and sunscreen.



3) Firework Fab – Be a firework in a cute simple navy dress ( that’s perfect for a hot summer night of fun. Pair it with some simple t-strap sandals ( and this adorable navy blue wrap bracelet with gold detailing ( Finish of the outfit with a pop of red, like this red chain strap clutch (


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