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It’s that time of year again! Whether you’re checking off a school supplies list, or moving out to begin the university year, back-to-school styles are a hot topic. If you’re like me, and you’ve already graduated and looking forward to “the rest of your life” you know that school styles (and sales!) don’t end after the cap and gown ceremony.

back to school fashion style 2014

So what’s hot this fall? 90’s grunge is a fashion trend that isn’t quitting soon. Baggy plaid mixed with a crop & leather leggings are the perfect “I’m not trying, but really I am” look.

1. Unisex Tartan Plaid Flannel Button-up, $68, available at American Apparel

2. Helmut Lang Stretch Leather Leggings, $920, available at Net-a-Porter

3. Alexander Wang Prisma Croco-Embossed Flat Bottom Backpack in Beet, $1,2950, available at Bergdorf Goodman

4. Richmond High-Tops, $281, available at Yoox

Soft neutrals are also resurfacing. Minimal hair and make-up paired with a flowy cami, cuffed jeans, and nude shoes equals chic perfection!

5. Cami NYC Classic Silk Tank, $133, available at Otte New York

6. Kerri Cardigan, $395, available at Rag & Bone

7. Mansur Gavriel Large Backpack, $845, available at Barneys

8. HOPE Stay Patch Jeans, $140, available at La Garconne

9. Ollio Women’s Shoe Classic Lace Up Oxford, $15.99, available at Amazon

Happy shopping, enjoy the sales while they last!

By: Kayley, Fredericton, @wanderrluust

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After recently sharing my Office Attire Essentials recently here on Style Nine to Five, I figured what better time than now to also share a few tips to looking stylish from 9AM – 5PM!

1. Invest in pieces that have a bit of pizazz to them. A chevron print scarf, bright statement necklace or a pair of oversized earrings are great pieces to add on to that simple white blouse & black trouser combination.

2. Always have a “back up” on hand. When you’re at home, pick out an outfit that you always tend to like on yourself. This outfit will prove as a great back up on those rushed mornings or when the outfit you’ve previously chosen just doesn’t “work”.

3. Have a simple black blazer on hand. A classic black blazer will always layer over a casual look or simple dress and elevate the look to be a bit more office appropriate. We all have our “casual days” but try to sophisticate the look by adding a blazer into the mix.

4. Carry a stain remover pen in your purse. Ever spilt coffee on your crisp white blouse first thing in the morning? Yeah, me too – a stain eraser is a life-saver in these moments!

5. Invest in your shoes. A comfortable pair of flats, great pair of boots or a classic pair of heels can make your outfit. Scuffed, distressed or shoes with holes need to be tossed as they do not exude the level of professionalism that a job requires.

6. Stick to dark denim for work. Reserve your light or distressed denim for weeks.

7. Keep a mini lint roller in your bag. Nothing ruins a professional look like being covered in fluff and lint!

8. Have a great completer handbag. I recently shared my tips to snagging the perfect professional handbag here because nothing polishes a look off like a great structured purse.

9. Have a garment steamer at home! Wrinkly clothes never look professional but you can eliminate this pesky problem easily by just keeping a steam iron at home!

10. Never wear light denim to the office — save that for the weekend!

By: Bree Aylwin, writer of The Urban Umbrella | @urbanumbrella29

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Think (Hot) Pink Fashion

My childhood bedroom was a deep raspberry colour.  My prom dress was a vintage-style cocktail dress in a similar magenta hue.  My nails right now? Hot pink.  Needless to say, hues of pale rose aren’t really my thing.  Radiant orchid may be the colour of the year, but I’d rather save it to mix with my fall denims and leather. While the sun is still shining, choose a brighter shade of fuchsia, over more the muted orchid.   A shock of a blue tinged hot pink, deep magenta, or more a brighter raspberry is flattering on a lot of skin tones and doesn’t whisper demure or read girly.  For the Spring/Summer 2014 season, UK export Preen anchored dresses and tops in shades of magenta and neon rose with pastel pink and multi-colour prints, with Helmut Lang’s soft lingerie-inspired slip dresses sauntered down the runway in deeper shades of magenta. As the temperature drops, the shade is easily held on to.  Fall 2014′s hot pink showed up in wool cocktail dresses, utilitarian rain coats, and casually slung scarves, offering a bright reprieve from autumn’s darker colours and letting you save the pastels for Easter and baby showers.

1. MFW Spring 2014 Street Style, Elle Canada

2. House of Holland Combover Cat Eye Acetate Sunglasses, US $275, Net-A-Porter

3. Patchwork Metro Watch, US $175, Kate Spade

4. Thakoon Addition Printed Crepe De Chine Top, US $295, Net-A-Porter

5. Superstretch Five Pocket Trousers, US $60, Zara

6. Valentino Fall 2014 RTW, Look 8, Vogue

7. Brigette Top, US $38, Nasty Gal

8. Pollini  Suede High Heels With Metallic Heel, US $593, Farfetch

9. Filles A Papa Malibu Tomboy Swimsuit, US $230, Net-A-Porter

10. Cedar Street Maise Bag, US $298, Kate Spade

11. Christopher Kane Cashmere Sweater, US $735, Matches Fashion

12.Haute Hippie Asymmetrical Hem Dress, US $345, Shopbop

By: Lisa Reddy

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One of my favourite fashion changes I look forward to for fall is the ease of adding a cardigan to just about any outfit. With so many different cuts, colours, and lengths to try, it’s hard not to stock up and wear a different cardi every day. For work, go for a cropped style that is easy to layer over dresses, and has a polished look to them. For the weekend, try long and textured styles paired with skinny jeans and you’re good to go.

1
Work:

1. Nic + Zoe Double Trim Cardigan, $108 USD

2. Lanvin Intarsia-Knit Beaded Cardigan, $980, available at MATCHESFASHION.COM

3.H&M Fine-Knit Cardigan, $24.95

4. Diane von Furstenberg Intarsia Wool Wrap Cardigan, $330 USD, available at Net-a-Porter

2

Weekend:
5. Tibi Mohair Oversize Cardigan, $395

6. J.Crew Merino Wool V-Neck Cardigan, $91.50 USD

7. Joe Fresh Merino Collared Cardigan, $49

8. Hanna Andersson Pointelle Sleeve Cardigan, $119

By: Liz Doré, Toronto

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Fashion Merchandising Management

As we get one step closer to the consumer, let’s focus on fashion merchandising management – a broad category that includes buying, allocations, planning, product development, sales managers, account executives, retail management, and marketing roles. Professionals in these roles work for the fiber and textile companies as well as apparel producers to merchandise and market the products to the ultimate consumer.

Developing a merchandising and/or marketing plan falls on your shoulders as you consider merchandise positioning, brand imagery, targeting, and segmentation of a product. The ability to choose and merchandise a product, pinpoint a target audience, develop marketing tests, and analyze results will determine the success of the business. Industry specific computer technology will be used to extract and analyze data for future planning and allocation and to manage inventory levels and sales.

If you love math (or you don’t mind it), successful reporting requires the ability to calculate, interpret, and respond to financial planning and control reports of the merchandising and store operational teams. Reports include sales analyses, maintained markup reports, gross margin, seasonal plans, and additional data as required by the company.

You will make decisions involving inventory models, inventory replenishment, and seasonal and long-term merchandising strategies. Merchandise assortment planning also falls under the merchandising umbrella. Essentially, the fate of a collection post-production is in your hands.

Furthermore, retail’s ongoing move towards an omni-channel approach offers additional opportunities for those who wish to pursue a career in this field. Omni-channel retailing is rapidly gaining momentum in the industry as consumers gain control of the shopping experience and demand to shop whenever and wherever they choose. Digital and mobile opportunities will continue to expand creating additional opportunities for those who are more technologically inclined.

Fashion merchandising management offers a range of career paths depending on the segment that interests you. The finished product is in your hands and making it desirable to your target customer is your highest priority. From buying to product development, the opportunities are endless. For the sales-oriented, account executive and retail management roles may appeal to your selling abilities. The merchandising and marketing professionals ensure the product is presented to consumers as intended by the company’s standards. Regardless of the role that you choose to specialize in, you will have a direct impact on the overall business.

By: Malicia Basdeo, New York City, @maliciaism

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