I recently got these super rad saddle shoes for a rockabilly party. They fit perfectly and they look so damn darling! I want to wear them to school (and everywhere else!) but I’m totally unsure how to make them look casual without the whole rockabilly ensemble attached. They’re just sitting in my closet—please help? —Stephanie, 15, Reno
Great choice you made, bb-kins! I truly believe you can wear saddle shoes with almost anything; I wear mine so much that the soles are all fucked up and I’m about due for new ones. One outfit that I like to add them to is an acid-washed miniskirt and a Channing Tatum tee. There are no limits, though! The ladies below exemplify how saddle shoes can be worn awesomely with a variety of outfits, including all-black ensembles and even plain old jeans:
Recently, I’ve been wearing my saddle shoes with skirts and sheer printed socks. Try yours out with a few outfit combinations and see what you like!
I recently learned that a large percentage of the bra-wearing population doesn’t wear the right size, and I’d like to know if I’m guilty of that. I know you can get professionally fitted for a bra, but the thought of that makes me cringe. Can you tell me how to measure myself? —Zoe, 15, West Virginia
It’s true: Many of us are unwittingly wearing the wrong bra size! Some signs that you might be: The underwires are poking the sides of your breasts; your boobs spilleth over (or under) the cup, your bra moves up when you lift your arms. Jenette Goldstein of Jenette Bras, a company that specializes in D-cup and larger bras, says, “Your bra needs to hold your breasts right up—if it doesn’t, your band is probably too big. If your breasts are wobbling, jiggling, or spilling out, then you may be having a cup size issue.” Never fear, my little Bra-dilocks, we will help you find the brassiere that is juuuust right.
I recommend doing this about a week after your period, since the ol’ menses can cause breast inflation. When the coast is clear, grab a fabric tape measure like this one and put on whatever you think is the best-fitting bra that you own. Choose one that isn’t padded (underwire is OK, though).
The mathy part of this explanation works if you’re measuring in inches or centimeters, but if you use a different system in your country, or you just want to avoid all that math, you can always enter your measurements into this international bra-size calculator.
First, stand up straight place the tape measure at the center of your chest, then loop it all the way around your bod, keeping the tape level and snug right under your breasts. Add five to the number you get, rounding up to the nearest even number (band sizes are typically even numbers). So, let’s say you measure 31.5 inches. Round that to an even number to approximate your band size, aka the numerical part of most bra sizes that you see in stores, although this may vary. Feel free to go a size up if it feels too tight for you!
Next, figure out your bust size. Measure the circumference of your bod again, this time at fullest part of your breasts. Round up to the nearest whole number, then subtract your band size from your bust size. The resulting number will reveal your cup size, according to this guide: 0 = AA, 1 = A, 2 = B, 3 = C, 4 = D, 5 = DD/E, 6 = DDD/F, 7 = DDDD/G, 8 = H. If your bust size is 42, your cup size is a D. So you’d wear a size 32D bra!
If you’re especially busty, there are plenty of lingerie companies, like Bravissimo, that specialize in bigger bras, and you can check out more recommendations at The Lingerie Addict. If you’re on the petite end of the spectrum, take a look at the recommendations at The Lingerie Lesbian, including Lula Lu and The Little Bra Co.
It’s great that you’re thinking about this now, since wearing the wrong bra can cause problems in the future, including back and/or shoulder pain, bad posture, and scarring from bra-band indentation. Good luck!
I’m going to college in a month, and the closet in my dorm room is tiny: It has a three-foot bar and four very narrow drawers. How does a stylish lady pare down her wardrobe significantly without looking bland? —Jordan, 18, New York
First of all, storage is everything! If you have any space under your bed, you can get storage chests and units like this, this, and this and tuck some of your threads away in there. Pinterest is a good source for further dorm-storage inspiration; I also like blogger Kate Gabrielle’s storage solutions for tiny spaces, as seen here and here.
Now, if you are truly SERIO about paring down your wardrobe, my first suggestion is to always keep really versatile pieces around, like your favorite jeans, leggings, black and solid dresses, and basic tops and T-shirts. These easy pieces will go with everything, and you can mix and match them, then add a variety of fun accessories, socks, tights, and so on, which are smaller and easier to store than clothes.
Next, do a Closet Cleanout. *CLUTCHES CHEST* Make an afternoon of it! Order a pizza, put on some Blondie, and maybe call some friends over to help you sort all your stuff out, like that one scene on Sex and the City.
Go through your clothes and figure out what to keep and what to bid a fond farewell to. Don’t worry—you’re not getting rid of anything you absolutely love! You can make your own rules, but some good guidelines (that I always follow) are: If you haven’t worn it in the past year, toss it. If it’s something you aren’t super attached to and that would be easy to get in the future if you ever find yourself needing it, like a trendy short-sleeved floral blouse, you can safely part with it. But hang on to unique vintage items, if you have still room for them (in your closet and your heart).
So you’ve got two piles going: TOSS IT and KEEP IT. When you come across something you’re unsure about—let’s say you kinda like this skirt, but don’t LOVE it, but maybe you’ll still want to wear it?—put it in a third pile, the MAYBE pile. When everything is sorted, go back through the MAYBE pile. You might find that some of the things in there seem less valuable after you’ve discovered that you have five black pencil skirts, or that your other purple sneakers are cuter than these ones.
After all is said and done, you can donate your purged clothes to your local charity shop (if your friends helped you with this task, give them first dibs, though!).
I want a pixie cut like Carey Mulligan’s or Michelle Williams’s, but do those haircuts only look good on girls like that, with really delicate features and feminine styles? I tend to favor combat boots, torn-up jeans, and black T-shirts, and I’m afraid a pixie on top of all that will just make me look like a boy. —Allison, 18, Austin
HELLS YES, a tough girl like you can rock a pixie cut! There ain’t no rules when it comes to hairstyles and wardrobes, my boo! Just because magazines are plastered with pictures of Michelle Williams workin’ her Mia Farrow ’do while wearing the girliest of gowns doesn’t mean that’s the protocol for everyone else. (Looks like Michelle agrees with me, BTW.)
Take a look at these pixied chicas, too:
There are no rules! Go get your hair cut—then you’ll be able to summon the ultimate badass pixie icon…
Hackers–era Angelina Jolie! ♦