Sarah Asks: Black Tie Mama

This installment of Sarah Asks comes from a dear friend who is a very new mom to a beautiful baby girl. Her question is great as it touches on multiple topics: Black Tie, Post-Baby Fit and my favorite, the power of accesorizing! Read on, my Broads...

Q: Okay "Broad", Here's a real challenge for you: My hubby got us invited to a Black Tie optional gala in April. I have NO idea what to wear given two "obstacles": it may be chilly (SF at night is a big question mark), and given my recent status change to New Mother, my body will need some strategic covering (namely the belly that carried my cute baby, and my arms which is where all that extra "baby fat" has set up camp).

Any ideas??


A: Challenge Accepted. Let's look at this in a positive light: you GET to go to a black tie event in San Francisco and you GET to choose a new dress for the occasion. So, although it's optional I'd say do it! You can go non-black-tie anytime you want. In fact, I don't like that you were given the "option"; no wonder you have questions! Embrace your inner fancy broad. This should be a fun task, not a daunting one.

Here are the Broad's helpful hints:

1. Stick to Black. The rules for Black Tie no longer require the need to wear black but since you're wanting to look as slim as possible, this is going to work in your favor. It's also the most fun color to complement with accessories.

2. If you dare to go non-floor length(which you can - again,"optional"), these are my recommendations:

This dress will make you feel zipped up and sexy at the same time. Pair this with some fun lace tights or sheer black nylons to dress it up. You said it was San Francisco so it's totally okay to do a lighter tight in the summer!

Amanda Uprichard Ponti Sheath Dress, Piperlime

Want to go short but more fun? This dress requires little to no accessories (some cute posts or slight drop earrings will do) but is fun and will hide any arm issues that concern you. Again, sheer black tights will make this more black-tie appropro.

Polka Dot Lace Shift Dress, Laundry by Shelli Segal via Nordy's

3. Now for floor length, which I prefer. Maxi's are in, Girl! Embrace it...

Yes, I know this is sleeveless. However, the flow of the material and the draping will work the rest of your figure so well. Brave this style with a pretty statement necklace and if you're feeling shy bring a bright wrap and wear it all night. You won't look like you're covering anything (again, SF in June!)

Evie Long Dress, J.Crew

THE BROAD'S #1 PICK: I love this dress. The sleeves will give you just the right amount of coverage while still looking like the sophisticated and sexy mom that you are. While this material may appear tight, it will work with you, not against you. And remember, SPANX are your friend!

Split Sleeve Dress, Lauren by Ralph Lauren via Bloomies

4. Now the fun part - ACCESSORIES!
Choose a color that you want to work into your black attire. Some fun ideas for summer are fuschia, yellow or lime. I highly recommend checking out stores like Ann Taylor Loft, J.Crew and discount retailers like Loehmanns for sales or great prices on trendy, attention grabbing statement jewelry. The right piece will MAKE the outfit. Check out some of the rec's I gave to Shanna when she asked about her maid accessories here.

Here are my two favorite jewelry ideas....

Statement Necklace

Okay, I am biased since this was what I had my maids wear, but this necklace is so fun to add to a sleek dress or more bare neckline. It also has silver and gold, faux diamonds and pearls so the earring choice to match (so long as you go simple) is SO easy. The necklace was from Anthropologie over a year ago but a somewhat similar piece can be found here, but I'd recommend scouring aforementioned stores for a better deal. 

Photo Courtesy of Joielala Photographie

Want even more color? This necklace will make your entire ensemble. Pair this with  posts and a pair of gold heels. Want to be crazy? Throw on a Fuschia wrap for more color.
Tessellate Necklace, J.Crew

Stunning Lobes
Put your hair up in a classy or more messy chignon and add these shiners to each ear. DONE.

Kate Spade Chandelier earrings via Piperlime

Get Your Kicks

I don't think  a broad can go wrong with simple, strappy metallic heels. *Online Shopping Hint* Search for "sandals" instead of pumps when you want a look like the above.

Rory Strappy Sandals, J.Crew

Never underestimate the power of a good  nude shoe. You will find endless reasons to wear them again and again. This is also the best color option should you choose a fun bright-colored purse or clutch. There are all types in every price range. I like the look and price of these.

Aldo Hersey Pumps via Nordstrom

So, now it's up to you to decide.. report back to us. Stay Classy, Mama!

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