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Published March 3rd, 2021
Looking Good in Lamorinda
Crossbody bag by Cass Clutch. Photo Debra Szidon

Word has it in the fashion world that the trend for spring 2021 is Easy Elegance. A full year into the pandemic, many of us have a desire to step away from the sweats and into something more presentable. Designers are on it and this season they are showing longer, fuller silhouettes that provide a sense of protection, comfort, and a touch of elegance.
Harper Greer in Lafayette is our local expert boutique in offering comfortable yet chic clothing. Shop owner Terry Kiskaddon says that customers right now are not buying dresses or pants. "There aren't many special occasions to wear dresses." And since we're attending meetings and socializing on Zoom, "it's all about tops of all kinds but mostly casual," says Kiskaddon.
The brands that Harper Greer carries, such as Eleven Stitch and Tulip, have shifted their designs to casual, relaxed silhouettes, like A-line blouses and boxy sweaters. Kiskaddon tells me that customers are looking for something different to add to their wardrobes, something to "cheer them up." For spring Harper Greer is stocking lots of color and patterns but currently flannel shirts are flying out the door. Customers can shop in person (with a mask) or online, curbside pickup is available. Visit online harpergreer.com.
I have noticed that when I do venture out into the world I'm reaching for my crossbody purses, which allow for hands-free, quick and easy access to the new essentials - mask and hand sanitizer. Local handbag designer Debra Szidon from Cass Clutch has been busy this past year expanding her line to include new shapes and sizes and fun patterned straps that make any bag in the collection into a crossbody bag. "All Cass Clutch handbags can be carried multiple ways and have accessories to coordinate with," Szidon explains. "Flat Pouches with side tabs allow a strap to be attached for crossbody, over the shoulder or on the hip wear." Check out the new styles at theclassclutch.com.

It was a happy surprise when I recently ran into Eliza Jamkochian from Glamourous Boutique. I reported last year that Jamkochian closed her Lafayette shop but she's selling online and there's more news - she's offering personal stylist services. Jamkochian puts together outfits for her clients and she will hand deliver or pop a package in the mail. Anything that doesn't work is returnable. Follow on Facebook: glamourouslafayette.
At press time, the de Young Museum was still closed to in-person visits, but we can view online the museum's current costume exhibit, "Frida Kahlo: Appearances Can Be Deceiving." When the renowned Mexican artist died in 1954, her husband, artist Diego Rivera, sealed off her room and many of her possessions in their "Blue House" located outside Mexico City. Fifty years later the room was opened and now on exhibit are the personal possessions of Kahlo including letters, photos, art works, cosmetics, jewelry and clothing. Known as much for her unique fashion style as she was for her self-reflecting art, Kahlo used fashion as a means to express her identity often wearing Tehuana. She was drawn to the bright colors used in the traditional Mexican dress as well as the full skirts, which covered her polio afflicted right leg. Learn more at deyoung.famsf.org.
Stay safe out there and ... go forth in style.
Moya Stone is a fashion blogger at www.overdressedforlife.com.

Harper Greer model wears a plaid shirt by Eleven Stitch and hat by FH Clothing. Photo Harper Greer

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