Stump the Stylist?!

There’s nothing that gets us going like a challenge! At THC, we like to think know there isn’t a styling situation we can’t handle. Jumpstart the season with THC this Tueday, September 4th to get your butt in gear for 9/6’s FNO + the always exciting Fall season.

From 6-8pm on 9/4 we’ll be guerilla styling in the In Fashion Lounge at Water Tower Place, leading the Stump the Stylist Fashion Challenge, part of the Magnicifent Mile Shopping Festival. I mean, there isn’t a happening we’d like more. We’ll be working out your fashion issues in the friendliest way ever. Oh, and we’ll be giving away our signature styling service, The Initial Edit, to an attendee. You gotta be there!

Want some of this? Register here!


Stump the Stylist Fashion Challenge with Haute Closet’s April Francis

Haute Closet’s April Francis has styled celebrities and civilians alike, but does she have what it takes to style you?  Find out at this FREE event!

April style five lucky shoppers LIVE on stage in Water Tower Place’s In Fashion Lounge on Level 7.

Guests at this event can enter for a chance to win a personal styling session with April, and all guests will receive a gift bag filled with fabulous finds from select Water Tower Place retailers.

For more information, call (312) 440-3166 or visit us online at shopwatertower.com/events.


via Journelle

Treat your precious underthings nicely, and they’ll treat you even nicer.

Great tips from Journelle via a recent stop in their shop on Lincoln Road in Miami Beach:


Packing for Paris

We get asked about packing a lot.

Basically, you’re taking a mini version of your Haute Closet on the road. Thus, everything should already be a perfect fit and in great condition.

The evening before leaving for Paris market ss12 we snapped our packing session:

Allow us to illustrate via the alphabet and caution: you should never get to Z unless you are packing to start a closet in your second home.

OK, so (a) belts. An essential accessory if you’re into belts. And if you’re not into belts ask yourself why not and are you sure about that … right now. Ok. So. One black, one oxblood, both working with all the shoes and bags and both easily transition from day to night and expand from short to long. Tricky … and trusty.

On to the shoes: we’ve brought four, a pair of Nike high tops (f), tough little boots (b), a sleek pair of flats (h), and (d) a Céline oxblood bootie. Notice how there is only one pair of heels, the Célines. Make this your packing ideal. When you’re on a trip you’re walking. A lot. If you plan for it, this one heel can drive a diverse set of evening looks.

Moving along, foundation. You’re going on a trip — take things that are functional, beautiful, ripe for layering AND laying on the seduction a la (c) this corset can work as a bra, a top with a high skirt or pant OR a surprise piece of lingerie. See also: fresh hosiery (g), an essential foundation for every trip unless you’re traveling to the equator, and even then. Basically, stockings serve as insurance against the chills and can also incite another (excellent) kind of chill. Purchase wisely and with abandon (not to mention they’re totally fun and can transform a black tunic in a second.) Undies and bras, you got this.

On to globe-trotting garments. Your selection should be basic, minimal and versatile in the biggest way, a la: your favorite jeans (i), a non-fusty flannel (j), essential sweatshirt (k) and a style-driven piece (l). There’s also a Topshop tank in there sporting Chicago Art Deco — it goes without saying, represent when you’re away. The takeaway: 3:1 tops to bottoms, think strategically, make sure you have solids and a few signature prints and they all play nicely together. This is the KEY.

On to the handbags and the other half of our case:

With the Jerome Dreyfuss (m) and pink (e) and white bags from above, handbags are covered (although our never-dies, apparently camera-shy LeSportsac serves as our carryon and secure day bag, this bag is black nylon but really it’s gold bullion). We could have edited out the white one, but we didn’t. We love it. Purses are perfect places to store your hair accessories and jewelry, saving space and ensuring the safe passage of all that is precious. (Also, dust off the dust bags — essential to cover all your shoes and bags if traveling commercial.)

Then there’s the dresses: a dressy black for that very special evening or every evening (q), one that goes day to night (r) and a signature piece (white leather, yes.) Again, here is that 3:1 rule: when it comes to packing and eliminating the bulk, soak in the fact that there are three flimsy dresses and one basic black coat (s) here. The dresses are easy to stow. Jackets, not so much. Everything works with the black jacket and the black jacket works with all of the accessories. Can’t wear dresses every moment, though, so we added, in addition to the jeans, two more highly versatile bottoms, a leather A.L.C. skirt (o) and a pair of shocking blue silk shorts (t). Both tightly packable, both interchangeable with all of the tops and the hosiery, which brings us to (p) socks. Socks are so often overlooked but one of our favorite categories. Don’t overlook.

Going back to (n), that’s where we’ve stowed our nonbreakable/nonspillable personal items. It’s a little Baggu ziptop, infinitely useful on trips, this one came in a set of three.

The lesson: when packing, less is more. All things in the case working together = yes. You can indeed take four pairs of shoes and three handbags without feeling badly, you just need to make certain each has its purpose. And always, always leave room for more. What’s a trip if you aren’t shopping to score some flavor from your destination du jour?

Perhaps that won’t be necessary if you’re going to an ashram, but that’s a whole ‘nother packing lesson. As in life, just remember your purpose. And don’t be too fussy when it comes to the clothes — bring out the best of your capsule wardrobe with smart accessories.

X April

PS: We were photographed a few times working a certain outfit concocted of the above.


Print on Print

We love it. We’ve been doing it forever. The pleasures of color and dynamism trump everything, especially when the skies turn dull and grey.

Recently, the Wall St. Journal asked us for our opinion about print on print. Check out the article, here.



Mix a coloful print with a black & white print.

Mix a big print with a tiny print.

Keep prints in complementary color schemes.

Blend florals with geometric patterns.

Get funky with print socks, hosiery and accessories.

Have fun with texture while you’re at it!


photos by Jon Shaft



The All-Season Shirtdress

Hello darlings! It’s been a minute.

Have been getting Dosed and loving every second – check it out here. The third installment, Dose Tres, is this Sunday, August 14th, from 10am-4pm at the River East Art Center.

In other happy news, I’ve been asked to contribute more regularly to refinery29 and my first post happened July 27. It was an ode to a fantastic shirtdress specimen from The Row.

The fabric is KILLER lux. You can see how I styled three of my girls — Swathi, Christina and Hilary, at right — in the piece over at refinery29.com.

I kept it and wore it the other day with a simple braided leather belt and a fab pair of SS2011 ankle bracelet Isabel Marant heels. And more of those Etoile bracelets on my wrist. I’m sure I’ll pull this Row piece out at least once a month for the rest of the year and then again in Spring, of course. I simply adore pieces like this — blank canvases made to hang with any accessory in your closet. I go into more styling detail, how-tos and ideas in the refinery post. I snagged this particular dress from chalk but you can also shop The Row direct. But it’s definitely better to go to chalk.

Why? Right now, chief among my endless list of reasons is that they have a full selection of (well, I snagged an AMAZING little gold one) Jerome Dreyfuss bags … and he’s married to Isabel. The bags come with little attached mirrors AND flashlights (I feel guilty I didn’t get one for my mom). Those two must be the coolest couple in Paris. Happily, I’ll be there myself in September and October with C/FAN. Christina is taking me and her line to (capsule) to sell it to the world and we plan on hanging out with jacquemus and the chalk ladies.


PS: Are those perforated buck Nike’s AWESOME or what?!


8th Grade Dreams

The lovely Riya, an 8th grade student, contacted us earlier this year. She was assigned to do a project on her chosen profession: styling.

She asked us some questions and here’s the Haute Closet part of her project if you’re dying to know why we do what we do and how we do it!



We say, good luck and keep it up, little lady!