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Tips From San Diego Stylemakers


What is your number one advice for staying stylish in a down economy?

Rita Szczotka: At a time when the world at large seems particularly tough, we want feel-good items that have an emotional connection. To achieve that, the items you purchase need to multitask and you must love them. If you are 50/50 or just like it, pass on it!

Mahjuba Levine: Shop! Take advantage of the opportunities to purchase the designer clothes you love at lower prices. Retail stores want your business and are willing to give some major discounts. Shop responsibly by adding a few key spring/summer pieces and accessories.

Kristi Brooks: Shop in your own closet! Search out what’s hot for spring, then see how many of those pieces you already have in your wardrobe (i.e. fitted cardigans are great pieces for spring. A lot of women have twin sets hanging in their closets. Just separate the sweater from the shell and voila, a fitted cardigan!).


What is your must-have item or style for spring?

Szczotka: The classic white shirt! Think of Marlene Dietrich, Katharine Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, and Jackie Onassis. They all embraced its cool, crisp elegance and made it their own. Today, fashion icons like Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie, and Uma Thurman continue to honor the timeless chic of the classic white shirt.

Levine: The rocker chick look. I am in love with Christophe Decarnin of Balmain. His studded jackets, torn sexy jeans, and mini fitted dresses are genius — the ’80s comeback never looked so hot. My must-have items are great wedges and gladiator sandals. I love the Christian Louboutin Patent Ankle Wrap Espadrille.

Brooks: I am crazy for the new take on the classic women’s jacket. There are so many variations — fitted, long, short, belted, buttoned. They look so chic with jeans and a T-shirt or thrown over a great cocktail dress.


Any other advice or tips that you’d like to add?

Szczotka: In addition to the staple in a women’s wardrobe, the denim jean, you need to add a great fitting white jean for spring and summer. Both will and should go with everything in your closet. The options are limitless! (858/558-0103)

Levine: When building a wardrobe, fit is of the most importance. It is this quality that will make or break any outfit no matter the designer or how much you spent on a piece. If it doesn’t fit, get rid of it. (www.mahjuba.com)

Brooks: It’s a great time in fashion to take risks as we are in an “anything goes” period — black and navy, black and brown, white after Labor Day, mixing patterns — at the end of the day, fashion should be fun, so live it up! (www.thestylelab.biz)  



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