Forget your grandmother’s tablecloth, forget that demure first communion dress (as a recovering Catholic, I’m still trying) and forget the notion that lace should only be found on the delicate trimmings of a wedding dress (or wedding cake, for that matter). Lace is back, and we’re drinking the Kool-Aid.
Naughty or nice, the lace trend is everywhere for fall. Apparel, shoes, handbags and jewelry are being trimmed, embellished and overlaid with lace. How to wear lace is the big question on everyone’s tongue. I sought out my favorite celebrity stylists and style experts for their advice and created “The Top 10 Ways to Wear the Lace Trend.”
- Mind Your Unmentionables. While it’s easy to get lost in the excitement of wearing a new trend, one should never forget the basics, that is, what you wear underneath. “The lace and sheer trend of late is a fun one to rock, but you’ve gotta do it right – ESPECIALLY when it comes to what to wear underneath,” says Jene Luciani, National TV Correspondent and Author of The Bra Book. “Rihanna, SJP, Fergie and others all can get away with showing off their bra, but I suggest instead a cami bra or bandeaus – something a bit more modest so you can still rock the trend without showing too much skin.”
- Line with Care. After building a solid foundation, you might ask yourself, “How the heck do you layer lace when it isn’t lined?” Olivia Gossett, Founder of I Like What You’re Wearing, recommends, “Silk slips and tops are a fantastic option as the light glossiness with offer a hint of shine beneath the lace, and it won’t hook on to the lace’s edges. Or, if it feels right, you can always try a bit of lace on lace.”
- Take a Short Cut. Lace shorts are popping up everywhere in every color allowing for various degrees of self-expression from crisp white classics to noticeably neon. Dulce Tejeda, better known as Dulce Candy, Fashion & Beauty Icon, and Blogger exclaims, “I love lace! It adds an element of texture to any outfit, as well as romance and femininity. I recently wore some cream lace shorts for an “outfit of the day” post. I paired lace shorts with a simple white tank and coral blazer.”
- Dress for War. “We get tons of requests from customers looking for the perfect lace dress for their formal event. We recommend creating an edgy look with lace, by pairing a lacy piece with combat boots or a faux-leather bomber,” says Amy Hirt, ModStylist for ModCloth.com. Additionally, “This look is on-trend, and adds versatility to a fancy frock. A little lace goes a long way as well, small details like a lace collar add a bit of flair.”
- Steer Straight and Narrow. For a sophisticated, finished look, pencil skirts and cigarette pants are great options. “Wear a pencil skirt with a beautiful complementary blouse or a simple chic t-shirt in a pop color,” says Stylist, Salvador Camarena. “A great pair of cropped cigarette lace pants with a classic button-down is a perfect day-to-evening look,” explains Celebrity Stylist and Commentator, Colin T. McDonald.
- Support the LBLD. For a variation on the classic wardrobe staple, try investing in a Little Black Lace Dress. Cecelia Myers, CEO and co-founder of CakeStyle.com, says, “If you are interested in investing in this trend and want something classic and lasting, you can’t go wrong with a three-quarter length sleeve black lace dress. We think even Kate Middleton would approve.” Additionally, Celebrity Stylist, Heidi Meek, says the LBLD is easy to take from day-to-night. Meek explains, “Pair it with a tailored blazer or cardigan, preferably with a pop of color. Choose flats or more conservative day-heel and handbag to finish the look. Lace is an easy textile to dress up for evening because the fabric itself is already more dressy. Switch out the flats and the jacket for a pair of sleek heels, clutch and subtle jewelry and your all set to dance the night away.”
- Perform a Balancing Act. As with any trend, it’s easy to go overboard. Fashion Lawyer by day and Fashion Blogger by night, Jenny Wu of Good, Bad, and Fab, says, “The key behind lacy versatility is balance. Don’t go for a form-fitting all over lace top as it’ll inevitably look too dressy and sexy for work. Instead, try a loose fit where lace plays a supporting but award-winning role.”
- Go All the Way. If you’ve never been one to go along with the crowd, fully commit to this trend by going bold. ” If you want to fully embrace the look, go for statement pieces like an allover lace dress or a pair of eye-catching trousers,” recommends Certified Image Consultant, Wardrobe Organizer and Personal Stylist, Lindsay Weiner. Further more, “To amp up the look and turn up the sex appeal, opt for pieces in black.”
- Be Jeweled. Don’t forget that trends in apparel can also extend to, and include accessories. “I am a huge vintage shopper so think this trend is great as you can make it unique to your individual style in many different ways,” explains Stacy Igel, Chief Fashion Editor and Stylist of online platform Lockerz.com. Accessorizing is a great wat to differentiate yourself. The trend has particularly influenced Igel’s upcoming Boy Meets Girl® runway show for which she has collaborated with an indie designer, Jean and Merce, to create an exclusive vintage lace inspired collar necklace (available on Lockerz.com in Sept 2012).
- Do It Yourself. Calling all crafters and wanna-be designers, if you want to rock the trend but save a little dough, do it yourself. Stylist, Abby Varinsky suggests getting out your sewing machine and scissors to create a look that’s all your own. “My favorite way to incorporate the lace trend is through DIY projects. Lace is incredibly easy to access – you can find rolls upon rolls in any craft store in pretty much every color, style and print variety. I use it as trim on cutoff shorts, insert lace panels in vintage tees and even make my own headbands. With just a few dollars (and stitches) you can completely recreate a garment,” explains Varinsky.