If you've ever shopped at Buffalo Exchange, you've probably met store manager Denise Lyons (right) and assistant manager (and blogger extraordinaire) Christy Lorio. If you're like me, you wondered how they manage to stay chipper and fashionable during long hours on their feet in a hectic shop (and, in Denise's case, while pregnant). Below, they share their style tips and influences.
How would you describe your style?
Christy: I favor simple silhouettes in rich colors or fun prints to avoid overwhelming my 5'1" frame. My uniform is a fitted top and an above-the-knee skirt; anything too voluminous ends up making me look like I'm wearing a bed sheet. Since I'm on my feet eight hours a day, comfortable shoes are a necessity. I keep it fun by wearing more unusual choices, such as black glitter oxfords.
Denise: I gravitate toward different things: A little hippie, a little vintage, a little contemporary.
Who or what are your style icons?
Christy: I get a big kick out of preppy style juxtaposed with a slathering of tattoos. Somehow the combination feels fresh right now. I also take cues from exorbitantly luxurious editorial spreads, the kind you'd see in V magazine. It's fun to daydream about wearing absurdly impractical ball gowns while doing mundane tasks, like grocery shopping.
Denise: Lucille Ball. It must be her humor and her desire to costume.
What style blogs do you read?
Christy: Most recently, I rediscovered Advanced Style, a blog focusing on women in their 60s to 90s. It's invigorating to see these grand dames living and dressing for themselves, and us young people could learn a lesson from their joie de vivre.
Where do you like to shop?
Christy: I get 80 percent of my clothes from Buffalo Exchange, but Abeille, Armoire, Gnome, Fairy, Funky Monkey, Swap Boutique and UAL are a few favorites. For jewelry, I sweet-talk my husband into picking up things from Sabai and Symmetry.
Denise: I prefer secondhand clothing. Stores I visit include Etsy and Ebay, Target, Gap, Anthropologie, Trashy Diva, Branch Out, Ah-Ha, Urban Outfitters, Hemline, Tomato, Elle, Funky Monkey, Steve Madden, Nordstrom and Saks. However, I spend most of my time shopping at Buffalo Exchange.
Any fashion tips, ladies?
Your jewelry should say something about your personality. Don't make your end goal be matching your outfit. Instead, choose pieces that tell a story yet still complement what you're wearing.
Don't get stuck wearing the same thing year after year, but don't feel like you have to make a sudden, drastic change either. Get out of your comfort zone.
Some fashion rules are made to be broken.
If you have to talk yourself into buying something, chances are you'll talk yourself out of wearing it every time. When in doubt, skip it or make sure you can return it.
Don't underestimate the importance of a good bag. It doesn't have to be a high-end designer (label), but nothing cheapens an outfit like a poorly made purse.