App Helps You Shop For Clothes

We’ve just released our official Android application that you can take with you next time you’re shopping for clothes to find exactly what clothes match your complexion.

The application has been created with Coat Rack Harmony’s coveted color palette that’s matched specifically to your eye, hair and skin colors. By using the application you’ll not only have all of your foundation and additional colors readily available, but will also have a camera-based application that hunts down these colors in any clothes rack when you’re shopping.

Simply enter in your complexion to receive your colors, and the application will automatically download your personalised color palette. Then all you need to do when shopping is to point the camera at a garment that you like, and the Coat Rack Harmony application will instantly tell you which colors in your palette the garment matches and how closely they match.

Shopping no longer needs to be a frustrating chore. You can now very easily push through the duds and disappointments in each store to find the gems that are perfect for you. And best of all? The app is free!

Download the Coat Rack Harmony application today.

What Shoes To Wear With Skinny Jeans

Skinny jeans have been around for a long time, and because of their versatility have become a popular choice for anything from casual weekends to the less formal office. Choosing to go down the skinny jean route does raise a few considerations and it’s not for everyone, but if you do decide to squeeze yourself into them, here are some tips to help match you up.

Tucked into boots

If you have a nice pair of boots that you’re itching to show off, this may be the style for you. Rather than the traditional jean route of getting a boot cut and training them to sit over the boot, skinny jeans tuck nicely inside it that adds more emphasis on both your boots and your figure. The bulkiness of the boots provides a strong contrast to the slim, narrow jean that effectively shrinks the size of your calves.

Ankle heels

Following on from the tuck method, ankle heels are fast becoming the de facto stylish option for pairing both leggings, tights and skinny jeans. This style looks great with looser fitting top-sections like wide T-shirts and cardigans that provide more contrast to a tight fitting bottom.

Paired with high heels

This is a trend that’s gaining momentum and it’s not hard to see why. A tall set of stiletto’s sitting on the end of a flattering pair of skinny jeans gives the illusion of longer legs. This makes it especially attractive to those with shorter or medium length legs looking for a bit more height.

Rolled up

Not so much a shoe but a sytle, rolling them up a good six inches or so with clearance over heels or boots is a great way to dress down your look. This is also a better option if you’re a little shy moving into a super-slim denim look.

Flats

Flats can look great with skinnies given you have the right shape. This combination can have the effect of making the hips and bottom appear larger and legs shorter, so is better suited for long legs and a smaller rear.

If you’re unsure if skinny jeans are right for you, or want to know which other garments suit you best, tell us your complexion and body shape and we’ll provide a full garment and color analysis just for you!

Top 10 Ways To Find Quality Clothes

cheap vs expensive clothesIf you’ve ever bought one of these cheap, ubiquitous garments that nowadays are all around us, you’ll know how fast they are to fade after the first wash or develop tears or pulls after you’ve worn it. They’re not built to last and are often easier to throw away and replace with more cheap clothes. That’s not to say that big name brands are immune to this either. Certainly there are items where you are simply paying for the label and not getting any guarantee of quality.

So forgetting about the name or the price, how can you determine if a garment is really made to go the distance? It really comes down to 10 things, and if you keep these in mind on your next hunt you’ll be able to discover clothes that represent value for money or are simply out right bargains.

1. ‘Manufactured In’ Tags

Finding out where a garment was manufactured helps you determine how much quality control went into it. Countries such as Spain, Italy, France and the US are far more strict on manufacturing quality assurance that countries such as China or Vietnam who normally try to compete on price alone at the expense of quality.

2. Zippers

If the garment has a zipper, run it open and closed a number of times and ensure it has a smooth action. Zippers that feel rough or whose teeth don’t line up evenly on each run could be an indication of problems to come.

3. Add on accessories

Some garments such as dresses or skirts come with built in accessories such as belts. Oftentimes these are afterthoughts by the designer in the aim to make the garment a more appealing buy. Scrutinize these accessories to make sure they’re not made out of flimsy materials like softer plastics or cardboard.

4. Buttons

Look at the stitching pattern on the buttons. If they use a cross-over pattern (X) then they’re far more likely to stay on the garment than if a straight pattern (=) was used. Furthermore, garments which hide the button underneath fabric are an indication of better quality.

5. Patterns

If your garment has patterns like stripes or other textures, check any joins to see if the patterns line up. If they do, it’s a strong indicator that the manufacturer took the time, effort and added material cost of lining the garment up properly – and most likely paid attention to the other details.

6. Lining

A garment’s inner-lining says a lot about how the garment was built. The lining is what helps clothes fall and fit properly on your body, and should be made out of a very high quality silk or silk/cotton blend.

7. Hem

Hemming should almost be invisible, and any attempt that’s been made to match the stitching color and minimize the external stitching shoes the manufacturers attention to detail. Furthermore garments that have larger hems indicate a manufacturer that hasn’t skimped on material costs, and provides you plenty of allowance to lengthen a it if it’s too short.

8. Seams

Seams should never bunch together and should be as smooth as the rest of the garment. Have a look for any loose or broken threads that could cause a hole later on.

9. Stitching

As a general rule, the more stitching per inch the higher the quality. Find a random length of about an inch anywhere on the garment and count the number of stitches. If it’s around 8 to 12 or more, then the stitching’s been done well and should hold for a long time.

10. Material

Lastly, the material is one of the best indicators of durability and longevity. Natural fibers are always last longer, so opting for wool, cotton, silk or linen are all common materials that will go the distance. Less popular but just as favorable natural fibers include vicuna, cashmere, alpaca, ramie and hemp.

Next time you find an investment piece you like, do your own quality check to ensure it’ll be with you a long time. If you’re not sure what clothes suit your body shape and complexion, click here to instantly find colors and garments that match your complexion and body shape.

Getting That Korean Style Look

Korean style clothesKorea has always been a mecca for fashion lovers. They enjoy a unique look that even if you’ve never seen it before can be instantly recognized as Korean. From Korean-vogue to Korean-street, looks vary from person to person in what can best be described as dressing to your personality. You too can take a page out of their book and incorporate some of their styles and clothes into your own wardrobe. Here’s how.

White lace

Lace is huge in Korea (and also China and Japan). Extremely feminine, heavey white lace is typically worn as an above-the-knee dress with long sleeves, whilst employing limited accessories. Typically hair is loosely swooped and tied back, and on the bottom half, a plain, dark pair of leggings or stockings can be worn to further emphasise the pattern of the lace.

Sporty Korean

So what’s the difference between a sporty look and donning a pair of tracksuit pants because you’re too lazy to wear anything else? It’s actually a very delicate process. There are two schools of thought on this. One option is to get very loose, medium-gray tracksuit pants – either 3/4 length or full length pushed up to your calves and then complete your top half with a wide t-shirt. The second option is to go for the full-body two piece tracksuit but be warned it’s extremely difficult to pull this off whilst looking neat, clean and beautiful in the true Korean manner. Do pay particular attention to your hair and makeup, and steer clear of any tracksuits that are too tired or have started pilling.

Wide Shirts

Wide T-Shirts can make or break a look depending on who’s wearning them. By wearing a figure hugging singlet underneath, you can confidently drape on top any wide t-shirt that tickles your fancy. Pair it up with a pair of cute jean-shorts, or go with a long black dress with sandles for a comfortable but alluring look. Be warned, this look isn’t for everyone, so find out if your body shape is a compatible match with wide t-shirts here.

Bohemian Korean

Is it possible for a relaxed Bohemian style to retain any sense of femininity? The Koreans sure think so, and the secret seems to be not to go full-Bohemian, but keep one or two items of clothing a bit more classy. Big, fat white dresses are great if you can couple them with a cleaner jacket and do up your hair. Consider thick rimmed glasses to shift your look and add a bit more edge to the look.

Cardigans

Cardigans are such a versatile and practical item that you should have a couple around your wardrobe. The bigger, floppier and wollier you can get the better, as you’re aiming to oversize the garment so it undersizes you. This gives an adorable, slimming look that will help mask any extra pounds that creep in over the winter months.

Despite any sort of disorder present in the way Koreans dress, the look always comes out amazing and is due to very careful attention to neatness, grooming and overall presentabilty. It’s essential to commit to the look and not stop half way when putting together your outfit.

As with any look, however, not all body shapes and complexions are suited to all styles. To find out if your body shape matches the garments mentioned, check out our complexion matching analysis to find what colors suit you best and what type of garments work best with your body.

Autumn and Winter Coats for 2012

Autumn Coats 2012For those of us in the Northern hemisphere, things are certainly starting to cool down. Outside the leaves are changing color and the mercury is dropping, and we’re left in no-man’s land between our summer and winter wear. If you’re pulling out your winter warmies now, it’s a good time to check if you have a good coat to face the weather.

Last winter big and oversize coats were extremely popular. This season is going to build on that, and we will see even larger and edgy styles. Fortunately these coats are very versatile, and most will suit the body shape of the wearer.

One style that was popular last season, and will undoubtedly make a return this season is the big fur or fluffy coat. The most popular length are those that run down to the knee, however anywhere between mid-calf to mid-thigh is fine.

Collars are something that a lot of designers are experimenting this Autumn, and key among them are V-neck or collarless designs. Although not the most practical element, they look great and can be matched up with a scarf to keep you snug.

Another coat style that’s coming back is the more masculine look (if you can pull it off). We see this a lot in the oversize coats that tend to hold their shape and bulk, especially in the shoulders and chest. If you’re looking at taking this route, a double-breasted coat works best due to its classically masculine look.

In terms of colors, the standard autumn palette is back again with browns, oranges and greys. That’s not always great news if you have a cooler complexion, but even then there are similar colors that will work much better for you. Most of these colors are available to you via your additional color set.

Purple is one such colors that’s making it’s appearance felt this season. Lighter during the day and darker during the night, purple is a classic color that works well as both a staple color and as an accessory. However you choose to wear it, check out your color profile to see which purple tones are going to best match your complexion.

How to Choose the Right Dress

How to choose a dressPicking out a new dress is both fun and stressful. With so many different styles and colors to choose from, settling on the one that best suits you can be difficult. Why? Chances are there’s a lot of different dresses that all look great on you, and you have a hard time choosing exactly which one you like the most. This guide will help make that choice a little bit easier.

Occasion

Before you start shopping around, you probably already have in mind what you’re buying the dress for. It could be a specific function or event, or maybe you’re just looking to get a new frock as an excuse to be taken out to dinner. Either way, keep in mind the level of formality and what’s generally acceptable for the event. For instance, heading to a cocktail party will require a very different dress compared to what you’d wear at a wedding.

A good way to find out the general vibe is to do a Google image search of the type of event you’re going to, and get an understanding of what the norm is.

Body Shape

Once you’ve understood what types of dresses will suit the occasion, try and find a cut and style that best suits your body shape (we have a tool that does just that!). Choosing the wrong one can unbalance your body lines and won’t flatter your natural shape. What may look great on one person won’t necessarily look good on another.

Colors

By now you should have decided on what style of dress is going to work best for you. Great! Now it’s a matter of choosing the right colors. Some formal occasions may call for an indulgence of black, white parties may call for white, or breezy summer day BBQ’s may call for as many colors as you can find. Either way you should have an understanding of the amount and intensity of color in your dress that’s acceptable based on the first step.

But with so many colors, how can you choose? Different colors look good on different people, and have a serious impact on either brightening up your complexion, or completely washing you out. Find out what your colors are and dress to those. It’ll be much easier to look great by using the types of colors that suit you.

Makeup and Accessories

Hopefully you’ve nailed the type of dress as well as the colors you want to employ. Time to finish off your outfit by garnishing it with a few accessories. Be careful to overdo this as you could end up looking like Mr T. Going au naturel is preferable to this, but may be just a little too bland. For formal occasions, shiny gold & silver work well as do pearls. Scarves and shawls can be used for more casual occasions, as can less formal jewelry like bangles and beads.

Lastly, match your makeup to your dress and the occasion. There’s no need (or desire) to go overboard on makeup for lunch with friends, however it is important to do yourself up nicely prim and proper when you’re being wined and dined. Check out what makeup suits you for some insight as to what will bring out your natural complexion.

What To Wear With Leather Pants

Leather pantsLeather pants have the ability to make or break an outfit. Different to leather leggings, leather pants can provide a more comfortable fit and look great as both a biker/punk garment, or part of a chick look that adds a new edge. Whichever style you’re thinking of, keep a few of these rules in mind when looking for a pair of leather pants.

Keep it black, keep it versatile. Although there are a wide range of colors for leather pants, not all are created equal. Red leather may seem like a good idea at the store, but it restricts what you can do with the rest of the outfit. By sticking with a traditional black or deep dark charcoal, the opportunity to mix and match with many different garments improve.

Avoid studs, bling or any other tacky detail. Real leather pants aren’t cheap, and you’ll want it to serve you well as a foundation item for a good couple of years. The last thing you want to have happen is discover it only works in casual outfits due to excessive detailing or accessories. Choose a traditional style that will last you, and can be combined with different types of garments.

Shiney or matte? Those with longer legs can get away with both a shiney leather or a matte variety. For those of us with shorter legs, that high-gloss look isn’t very flattering and best avoided in favour of a more matte style. Matte is far more versatile in any account, as it will allow you to wear a far greater range of tops.

Fabrics that match leather pants? Avoid matching leather with more leather! Instead, use contrasting fabrics like cotton, wool, fur, tweed and mohair. These natural and matte fabrics compliment leather pants exceptionally well, and help to emphasis their chicness.

When choosing matching colors for your pants, an all-black approach is not necessary. Go for lighter colors or neutrals from your additional color set, and be confident that you’ll rock the look!

What you should wear to an interview

What you should wear to a job interviewPresenting a professional and competent image for a job interview is one of the most important steps you can take to better position yourself for a successful outcome. A clean, neat and well coordinated outfit can have a huge psychological influence over your interviewer, who will treat you differently than other less presentable candidates just because of your clothes. Like Mark Twain said “Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.”

So what should you wear to an interview? Honestly, it depends (but not a lot) on the type of job you’re going for and its seniority. For instance, a junior role in a casual creative agency would call for a less formal approach than a senior banking position. Get to know the company and also the industry it’s in, and take note of what the people wear.

Once you have a general idea, dress just a little better than you’d expect the interviewer and other people in the office to wear. For example, if it’s a polo shirt type of office, go for a nice blouse. If it’s more of a business shirt and tie place, go the full suit. If at all you’re in doubt, ALWAYS dress more formally, as you’ll definitely hurt your chances of giving a favorable impression if you’re dressed like you’re not worth respecting.

When putting your outfit together, stick with the garments that compliment your body shape, and keep it business by sticking closely to your foundation colors. More casual roles will allow you greater freedom to choose from your additional colors as well, whereas fewer additional colors should be worn for more formal or business oriented roles.

Keep your jewelry to a minimum and keep it tasteful. Small amounts of gold or silver are acceptable, as are pearl jewelry/a> so long as you don’t dress like you’re heading out to a cocktail party. Jewelry that is too “in your face” or makes noises when you move will distract the interviewer and will make it difficult to take you seriously.

Lastly, your personal grooming is important. The night before, take some extra time with your skin care routine and get a good rest so you wake up without dark patches under your eyes and looking fresh. Apply your makeup properly with care, and lightly apply perfume – your interviewer will be with you for a long time, so you don’t overwhelm them with your scent. Your hair should be neat and appropriate for the job you’re applying for.

Dressing right for the job is one of the most important parts when getting ready for your interview. Not only will it give the interviewer confidence in your and demand respect, it’ll also make you feel more comfortable and a sense that you belong in the company so you can focus on giving your best performance. Good luck!

What Should I Wear With Leather Leggings?

What should I wear with leather leggingsLeather leggings are a popular, edgy choice that can either make or break a look. A black, shiny fabric that was born out of the Lycra leggings craze, has become increasingly popular as both a grungy, rock look as well as a valid choice for an elegant look with a edge. This particular garment isn’t for everyone, and there are a few tips to know when matching with your existing wardrobe.

Who should wear?

Your body shape dictates whether or not leather leggings will help or harm your natural body lines. As a very tight garment, it works best for those who don’t need to balance out a wider upper half, or a fuller body shape. Unfortunately that makes it not such a great match for:

  • Rounds
  • Full hourglasses

How to wear

However for the rest (hourglasses, lean columns, inverted triangles, triangles and rectangles), this could work very nicely for you. Most commonly, leather leggings are worn with a pair of heels with a view to create a more elegant look. The top half can be complimented using the right combination of your additional or foundation colors. Also as most leather leggings are black, check out how to wear black for tips to ensure you don’t appear washed out.

When it comes to finding a matching upper half, most people tend to opt for a loose fitting blouse or cardigan to offset the tightness of the leggings. This can be complimented with scarves or loose jewelry like long beaded necklaces. A less formal look can also be achieved by stripping away the accessories in favor of a wide t-shirt. As this is a leather piece, avoid matching your leggings with more leather – definitely no jackets!

A final point is to remember that the other garments and colors that you wear with leather leggings should come from your recommended clothes list and worn to ensure that the leggings work for you and not against. This is particularly important triangles and inverted triangles who may need to work a little harder to achieve balance.

So at this point if you’re still considering a pair of black leather leggings, then go for it! Just remember leggings aren’t pants, and a proper fit matters!

How To Choose A Cocktail Dress

How to choose a cocktail dressOccasions where you can wear a cocktail dress are no longer restricted to the cocktail party after the sun goes down. More and more events now require cocktail dresses to be worn irrespective of time of day, making your options just that little bit more broader. Your choice of dress for a midday lunch may be much different to evening drinks. Worse still could be late afternoon that turns into an evening event.

Regardless of the time of day, an occasion that necessitates wearing a cocktail dress is undoubtedly glamorous, sophisticated and just a little bit sexy. Finding a dress is easy, with a huge number of manufacturers offering a wide variety of dresses. Finding a dress that works for you, as well as being versatile enough that it can be worn across different times of the day, can be a little more challenging. However, the following tips should help you out.

Darker colors are your safest approach when choosing a cocktail dress. In a sea of tuxedos, the elegance of black, charcoal and dark navy are difficult to get wrong. With this said, these shades are not your only option, especially if you’re after a slightly different look.

Attending an event that’s held during the day doesn’t necessarily call for those dark shades that work so well during the evening. If you’re planning to go lighter or more colorful, this is the best time to do it.

Shrugs, shawls and scarves are a fantastic way to change your look as the night progresses. By wearing a darker dress, color and style can be adjusted with these versatile pieces. What’s more is they’re a very practical piece when moving from a warmer afternoon party to a cooler evening event.

Layers can also work well in reverse, where they can be removed as the night and party progress. Start with coats, shawls or scarves and as the party heats up, leave these in the coat room to draw attention back to your look throughout the night.

Shoes are an obvious point of focus for your dress. For such formal events, flats are generally not a good idea. Rather, slip into an elegant pair of heels that match your outfit, preferably black with a little bit of classy bling being acceptable.

Jewelry is the final piece to an important part of your cocktail dress look. Here it’s about finding a necklace that matches your earrings, within your budget, and without overdoing it. When it comes to these events, it’s about finding well stated jewelry that isn’t overbearing, but captures the attention of whoever’s in your company to enhance your complexion.

With this in mind, you may notice that choosing a cocktail dress is as much about matching it to your complexion and body type as it is about matching to the event. Do some research, find out more about the event, and you can be sure you’ll look great. If you want to find out more about what types of clothes and what colors match your complexion, try our online style analysis tool for your own personalized report.