Thursday, June 30, 2011

Who needs three lengths of tank tops anyway? (psst – YOU do!)

So adding new products to our website is a little tricky from my perspective. It takes a chunk of change to buy the inventory and photograph it plus a ton of time for things you’d never think about (ex: creating an item number, populating all our systems with said new item number, issuing a PO, dealing with delivery dates, calling when said delievery dates aren’t met, writing the copy, creating all the pages, cropping all the photos etc. etc). Although I like to keep my customers happy and coming back for more, there are a lot of “others” to consider before I make the move to buy a new product. So if you’re wondering why I’ve invested all of the above “examples” into three different lengths of tank tops, I can understand why you would now be scratching your head at this point, but let me explain.
The best product I can invest in as a business owner is a product that I can sell to one of my existing customers. Although three different lengths of tank tops seems like a crazy investment of time and resources, all of our current tank top customers need to take a look at their wardrobe and think hard about what I’m about to say.

THERE IS NO PERFECT LENGTH TANK TOP!!!

Everybody who has ever worn a tank top knows this but maybe doesn’t realize it. How many times have you found yourself standing up from your desk and adjusting your tank top or fidgeting with it at some point in the day? If you find yourself doing that, it doesn’t mean you have a bad tank top, it really means that you are not wearing the correct length tank top that your particular outfit needs. Here’s how I decide which length of tank top to wear on any given day:

         Regular Length Tank top

Perfect for:
  • tall women
  • long torsos
  • wearing under dress shirts that you are tucking into a skirt or pair of pants/trousers
  • wearing on their own untucked with shorts, pants or skirts

                  Short Tank Top

Perfect for:
  • petite women
  • short waisted
  • wearing under t-shirts and see thru tops
  • when wearing a belt and not wanting to tuck something in
               Extra Long Tank Top

Perfect for:
  • tall women
  • long torsos
  • wearing under see thru tunics or dresses to act as a slip
  • the days I’m feeling lazy and only wear leggings but still want something to cover my behind.


Everybody fits into more than one of these categories which is why it is necessary to evaluate your wardrobe, find out when you like which length tank top, and make sure you are “covered”.
Here’s a visual way to keep the facts straight:


Just in case you want to give a new length tank top a try, shop today thru July 5th and save 20% by using code: HAPPY4TH at checkout at kateboggiano.com.


Happy Thursday!
Kate


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

4th of July Online Sale

We want you…


To save on all Kate Boggiano merchandise!
Save 20% off sitewide today thru Tuesday 7/5 at 5pm in honor of Independence Day.


Use code HAPPY4TH at checkout.


Happy Shopping!
Kate

PS-Here's my favorite deal!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Women's Dresses

Since the social acceptance of women wearing pants, it seems as though we have taken this to mean that we should ONLY wear pants. As you look around, the majority of women seem to be covering their legs rather than embracing them. Sure, pants are easy to throw on but guess what is easier? A dress! Instead of rummaging around in your close for a matching blouse or top why not try a dress.
Dresses are:


1. More form flattering for most women

2. Easier to wear and cuts down on decision/dressing time in the morning. NO more having to match a top and a bottom.

3. Cool and breezy in the summer
4. Super feminine
5. A way to stand apart from your male counterparts because unlike you who can wear pants, men can not wear a dress!



My three favorite Kate Boggiano Dresses that are totally office appropriate are the McKenzie Wrap Dress, the Jackie Shirt Dress, and the Sleeveless Ruffle Isadora Dress.
I’m not sure about you but wrap dresses always seem like a good idea to me until I actually try one on. I find them confusing to figure out and it seems to me that they never stay in the right place unless you tie the ties so tightly that you can’t breathe. I thought long and hard about this issue when I designed the McKenzie Wrap Dress. Instead of having to deal with a confusing extra flap of fabric, I designed the McKenzie Wrap Dress so that the pieces of fabric are actually stitched in place and it’s an easy over the head entry with help of a zipper. The only piece that is “movable” is the wrap around belt that is secured by two snaps. Our “faux” McKenzie Wrap Dress is office appropriate (in length and front neck drop) and secure so you feel confident in your outfit and able to face your busy day.


Finding a good dress with a short sleeve is a challenge that many women face. Short sleeve dresses are great for the summertime and they are very office appropriate. I love our Jackie Shirt Dress because it has a nice pleat detail on the sleeve and a full skirt with a waist wrap that visually makes the waist the narrowest point even if it isn’t normally that way on its own. Side seam pockets and a shirt dress style placket round off my favorite parts of this Shirt Dress that is great to wear at the office and beyond!

 Every summer, my goal is to find 2 dresses: the dress I wear to every summer wedding (as long as each are with different groups of people) and a dress I can wear casually or spice up for dinner on vacation. Our Sleeveless Isadora dress happens to have been both for me during different years. I love this dress and even though it isn’t new this year, it’s longevity is amazing and I attribute it to it’s classic a-line shape, high ruffle neck collar, and fantastic fabric (that IS machine washable!). Honestly, I have belted this, thrown a cardigan over it and paired it with some cowboy boots, added a chucky sweater, worn it with flats, worn it with heels, and always feel comfortable and like I made the right choice for any occasion I wear it to. The Sleeveless Isadora Dress is really a go to dress for any event you might have.


A little birdie told me that we are having a sale on everything starting Wed so if these dresses sound like something you might want to try, I’d get on it first thing Wed morning.

Have a good one!


Kate

Monday, June 27, 2011

Announcing our Semi-Annual Warehouse Sale

Live in the Chicagoland area?  You might want to come check out our semi-annual warehouse sale on July 23rd.  We'll have great hourly deals on current merchandise and 20% off Fall pre-orders as well as special pricing on our tank tops and seamless apparel.  This is a sale NOT to be missed but as a warning, things tend to go fast early so if you really want the good stuff, you have to get here early!


For more info, visit us at Kate Boggiano.com!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Achieve your best look fast!

As women, we have to do it all - work, family, home, friends etc. etc.  Being nice to ourselves and our appearance is one of the first things sacrificed in order to make more time to do other things for others.  Finding easy ways to maintain femininity in your everyday appearance will help you feel good about yourself and increase your mood when dealing with the outside world.  Here are a few of the easiest ways to boost your confidence and to help embrace your femininity (bonus - these are all things that men can NOT do!)

  1. Wear lipstick.  Even if you don't have time for make up, wearing lipstick will instantly make your eyes pop and your skin look great.
  2. Add interest around your neckline.  By adding chunky jewelry or a pop of color to a slightly exaggerated neckline, you are dressing up an area that makes you different than any man.
  3. Nail polish even if it's clear!
  4. Wear dresses, skirts, or tights.  These are some of the only types or categories of dress that women can wear and men cannot - take advantage!
  5. High heels or lower heels with shape or interest (more negative space)
Try adding one or more of these into your life this week-it always makes me feel better about myself when I do!
A few of my favorite Feminine Pieces...

Tank tops are a great inexpensive way to add a pop of color to a neckline.  I love our super stretchy tank tops and probably wear one 5 days a week. 
Regular length Tank Top
Womens Tank Top
Short Tank Top
Short Tank Top  
Extra Long Tank Top
Extra Long Tank Top
Tights are another staple in my wardrobe.  It helps extend the life of a dress as well as make it more practical and warm for cooler days.  I love our new Bamboo Tights!             Spiral Tights           Bamboo Footless Tights  

Dresses always sound like a hassle until you get in the habit of wearing them.  They are simple to get on, they are cool, and the good ones make you more comfortable than anything else you could wear.  These are my favorite picks for this summer:
McKenzie wrap dress                Sleeveless Isadora Dress  
Coupon!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Why racerback tanks make the perfect summer tank tops!

Are you a loyal tank top wearer but find yourself a little bored with the spaghetti strap simple tanks from time to time?  Check out our racerback tanks for the summer.  We love them because:

  1. Racerback tanks are sporty
    1. You can wear a sports bra all day long!
    2. If you are planning on being outside, racerback tanks give you ample opportunity to change up those tan lines.
    3. Racerback tanks show off your sexy back in a fully clothed/appropriate kinda way.
  2. Our racerback tanks are ribbed for her pleasure!
    1. Ribbing holds you in more than non ribbing.
    2. Ribbing adds texture and interest to an outfit.
  3. Our racerback tanks are one size fits all
    1. Buy some to make great birthday, wedding shower, bachelorette, hostess gifts or any other kind of gifts for all your summer functions.
92% Nylon, 8% Spandex
One Size Fits All
Available colors:  White, Black
$19.95

Want to check them out?  Sign up for our email list and receive a Free Shipping code so there is no risk!  Click here to sign up.
Have a good one - the weekend is on it's way!!
Kate

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

One of my many other hats….


Last week I had the pleasure of stepping away from my life as a designer and attended the Internet Retailer conference in beautiful San Diego, CA.  Although I didn’t get a second out in the sun by the pool (well not really sun thanks to june gloom), the conference was amazing, helpful, and an incredible opportunity to focus on what I think is our most promising growth distribution strategy, the internet.

Some facts from the Internet Retailer website:

San Diego's convention center from a far (no june gloom in this photo!)
The main sessions were HUGE
The IRCE conference included 100 sessions with some 175 speakers. Keynoters included Christopher Payne, president of eBay North America; Sona Chawla, president of e-commerce at Walgreen Co.; and Arianna Huffington, president and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post Media Group, now part of AOL.

The Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition 2011, held last week in San Diego, attracted 7,318 participants, 14% more than the 6,432 who attended last year’s IRCE in Chicago. That 2010 show had been the largest event in e-commerce until now.

Currently, I am in the midst of developing a new website and a new concept.  Details to follow shortly but for now, don’t forget to visit kateboggiano.com on occasion and sign up for our email list and get a coupon for free shipping, like our facebook page, and follow me on twitter!  Isn’t technology fun?

Chicago - to rain or not to rain….
Kate

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Leggings for one and all!

We do a lot of retail events throughout the Chicagoland area which allows us great access to our customers.  It’s always fun for me to hear what customers think about leggings for women and how to wear them.  I’d say 25% of women refuse to wear any kind of leggings, 60% of women embrace them, and 15% of women are either trying to get used to the idea or have recently purchased an outfit that requires wearing leggings and they are trying to find the perfect pair/occasion to wear it.

Here are a few of my favorite issues we come across:

  1. Leggings make me look fat
    1. If you think Leggings make you look fat, you are not wearing them correctly.  Leggings need to paired with a great tunic, skirt or dress that covers your hips and rear – period. 
    2. Petite women should take care when wearing leggings with a roomy top. Make sure your top is proportioned appropriately for your height. Additionally, your ensemble should be as monochromatic as possible for an elongating look.
    3. Tall women should also select their tops with care. You want to wear a shirt that comes down far enough so that your rear isn't exposed.
  2. Leggings are so 80’s
    1. You are correct, leggings did make a HUGE appearance in the 80’s however there are modern ways to wear leggings such as
                                                            i.      Wear leggings with tunics such as our Holly Tunic.
                                                                       ii.      Avoid wearing leggings with cropped tops
                                                          iii.      Avoid wearing leggings with sweatshirts
                                                          iv.      Try some fun shoes with the leggings.  Anything goes now from  flats to pumps to boots you choose your favorite!
  1. Leggings remind me of being pregnant
    1. Although leggings are amazingly comfortable (which is the reason by the way that they never quite go out of style) they don’t have to remind you of being pregnant.  Try a great tailored tunic or a dress and pair them with a great heel and I promise you won’t feel anything but sexy!
  2. I don’t like my legs
    1. The best part of wearing leggings is that you can show the shape of your legs without showing the skin AND since there is minimal fabric, your legs will actually appear thinner if done properly. 
  3. Leggings are too young for me
    1. This is always my favorite comment.  Leggings, especially those with a little more substance such as our Shapewear Leggings for Women, are great for older women as they give them the opportunity to wear something form-fitting without revealing too much skin.
    2. Leggings are best used as an accessory to your outfit so choose your outfit first, then add the leggings. Your leggings color should match something else in your outfit for the most harmonious pairing.  I love our charcoal grey leggings with black tops and dresses and a fun alternative to black leggings.
My favorite legging look of the season:

And finally, legging no-no’s
  1. Leggings as pants (no short shirts please!)
  2. Leggings with a sweatshirt

As you can see, the reason to wear leggings is far longer than how not to wear leggings.  Try a pair today and if you are stuck, shoot me an email and I’ll be glad to help you out.

Have a good one!
Kate

Monday, June 20, 2011

And I'm officially an adult...


Over the weekend, it was my 30th birthday (just in case you missed the last posting!).  I had a ton of fun and am still recovering from all the partying.  Friday night, my cute and fabulous husband, threw a (somewhat) surprise dinner and drinks with our friends at Japonais and then the Roof top deck at Market Bar Chicago.  Here are some of the fun photos.
Dinner at Japonais
The 2 smartest people I know (aka my besties!)
Geoff and Me mid sentence (wearing my scandalous RTR dress-and a tiara!)
The View from the rooftop at Market Bar Chicago
The dress is my first dress I’ve ever rented from rent therunway.  It was an amazing service to use and I’ll definitely be using them again for many events in the future.  My dresses (I picked a 2nd dress for just $25 just in case my favorite didn’t feel the same about me) showed up to my doorstep the day of the event, they were clean, well pressed, and ready to rock!  I returned them this morning in their stamped addressed prepaid envelope and dropped them off on my way to the office – how easy was that?!?  LOVE them!  (Check out my other blog posting for more info)

I definitely went for the more scandalous dress than I normally would wear out so to get ready for that, I “grouponed” it up and have been training with Crossfit Chicago’s Women’s Only Class.  If you are looking for a GREAT workout and a new challenge to up your fitness routine, you HAVE to check out CrossfitChicago.  AMAZING!  The coaching is far superior to any trainer or regular health club class instructor and the workouts are always new and different.  Crossfit combined with a “stricter” Paleo diet and I was ALMOST to my goal weight (I think I missed it because of all the new muscles I’ve been gaining from Crossfit!).  I definitely recommend Crossfit Chicago and the Women’s Only class and can’t wait to head back there on Wednesday morning to start burning off the weekend excesses. 

Just in case you have an event coming up and are looking for a faster fix than something like Crossfit, check out our new Shapewearleggings.  I LOVE these and they really make a difference – it’s rather incredible!  Sign up for our email list (or purchase 3 pairs) and receive free shipping.

Hope you all had a great weekend!
Kate

Friday, June 17, 2011

Cool website alert – Rent the Runway


Ok so do you remember in Sex and the City (the movie) where they are talking about renting handbags?  Awesome idea right?  How about renting runway dreses?  In theory sounds like a really good idea to spend a little money, get a great fashionable dress, then return it after the event is over.  Lets face it, who wants to wear the same dress twice especially when you might see the same people.  I admit, wearing a dress previously worn by someone else seems like it MAY be pushing that line a little bit (I envision this girl going to a Greek wedding and slamming plates on the floor when suddenly the air conditioning breaks and it’s 95 degrees in the Greek restaurant but everyone is having so much fun they all stay and sweat it out – ewww).

In my research of what’s going on online, I recently saw that renttherunway.com received $15mm in new investment money for their website.  Although I was a little hesitant, I decided to peruse the site and see if I liked what I saw and if they did a good job with the gross sweaty messes that came back before they turned them around again.

Much to my joy the site is beautiful!  It’s laid out perfectly with a section for the New stuff, designers, occasions, and the ever important weddings.  Personally, I love the shop by occasion ability as well as the shop by body type (similar to swim spot, right?)

The suggestions for jewelry are pretty spot on too!


They have a done a great job tackling the size question by sending you an additional size at no charge and by providing great, honest and accurate reviews by their customers for each and every dress!  If you aren’t sure about the size, there is an option to chat with a fit specialist or add something to your favorites so you can come back to it and figure out what your best option is.

SO….I did try it!  At the end of May, I picked out my favorite Hervé Léger dress to wear to cocktails with my friends for my 30th birthday party.  I ordered 2 sizes and scheduled them to come in on Thursday (currently still traveling for business so I’m not sure if my package is waiting for me or not yet!) PLUS they let me add a 2nd dress onto the order for just $25.00!  How cool is that!  Now I have a backup!!!

Some FAQ’s that I found helpful! 
What if I accidentally stain or damage the dress?
Don’t worry! We understand that some wear and tear may be inevitable and beyond your control. Our dry cleaner can take care of most minor damage. And the $5 insurance charge on each dress you rent will cover these types of situations. Although very rare, significant destruction (the dress is torn apart at all the seams, you try to squeeze a size 10 body into a size 0 dress, the centerpiece catches fire and chars your dress) or theft is obviously not permitted and we hope to never run into this problem. Unfortunately if these situations occur, your credit card will be charged immediately for the full retail price of the dress. There are no payment plans. 
How do I know my dress is clean?
All Rent the Runway dresses will ship to you directly from the RTR designer warehouse, where all dresses are cleaned, without any handling in between. We’ve partnered with a premier dress specialist in NYC and developed a process that ensures stringent quality control. We’ll only ship dresses that receive a 100% fresh seal of approval. Our dry cleaner is an expert in eco-friendly, luxury dry cleaning. They utilize an environmentally safe process that certifies that every garment is thoroughly cleaned and cared for, maintaining the impeccable quality of the garment while being kind to the environment (not to mention to your health!). Our packaging is also specially designed to fully protect the dresses during shipment.

Well I sure can’t wait for my first rent the runway dress for the big birthday bash!  Photos to follow on Monday!

I highly suggest checking out this service when Kate Boggiano Dress just won’t fit the occasion.

Happy Weekend!
Kate

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Cool new tank tops – Introducing our Metallic Tank Tops and our Long Sequin Tank Tops


Looking for a new tank top to spice up your wardrobe this summer?  Check out our new sparkly tank top options: Metallic Tank Tops and our Sequin Tank Top!

Our Metallic Tank Tops are made of a super soft and stretchy shiny material called butterfoil.  Our Metallic Tanks are intentionally wrinkled as a design detail to create interest and easy laundering, they have spaghetti straps making them an easy and non-bulky layering option, and they are very sparkly making them a perfect addition to any outfit.
            - New for summer, try our super comfy Metallic Tank Tops
-We love these when you need the extra “wow” factor (dates, big meetings etc)
            -Available in both metallic gold and metallic silver
            -Try one under a Holly tunic

One of my personal favorites is our new silver sequin tank top.  It’s extra long and perfect for layering, has spaghetti straps, and the back is all silver (also butterfoil) to make it more form fitting and comfortable to wear.  I’ve tried a few different brands of sequin tank tops and I find that when I wear them all day, my arm gets a little irritated by the sequins.  Our Long Sequin Tank Top only has sequins on the front preventing arm irritation and creating a more comfortable, great fitting tank top.

Long Sequin tank
            -New for summer, try our super sexy Sequin Tank Top
            -Great layering tank top as it is super long (2” longer than our Extra Long Tank Top)
            -Great date night sparkly tank top
            -We love it under our white Silk Victoria Bolero

Want to try one?  I suggest you do - the quantities are limited!

Have a good rest of your day – the weekend is almost here!
Kate

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Follow up on our How to lose 10lbs in 5 minutes workshop


Thanks to everyone who came to our How to lose 10 lbs in 5 minutes workshop.  Carolle Partington  I don’t know about you, but I usually get overwhelmed by how much information there is in workshops and don’t know where to begin.  For those of you like me as well as the people who weren’t able to attend, here’s what I took away from her workshop. was full of interesting facts, theories, and great tips as always!

  1. The actual size or shape of the body is not important.  The size and shape of the body when clothed IS important.
  2. The perfect women’s silhouette is an hour glass figure.  The shoulders and hips should appear to be the same width and the waist appear narrower.
  3. The perfect shaped head is an oval.
  4. Ideal body measurements:
    1. The body should measure 7x’s the head (visually, the head measures from the crown to where the clothes begin).
    2. Women’s shoulders should measure 1.5x’s the head.
    3. The legs should be equal to or longer than the torso
  5. If the silhouette looks shorter, it will appear wider and the body will look bulkier (it usually appears shorter because of horizontal lines or clothes that are too big).
  6. The hair, regardless of length or quantity, should maintain the ideal oval shape.
  7. Be careful not to add volume to the waist that changes the silhouette to oval or straight.
  8. If wearing a skirt, legs measure from the hem to the shoe or strap so be careful not to visually shorten the legs.
  9. If you are trying to appear more feminine, lipstick, an open cameo, nail polish, skirts and dresses, and higher heels are the easiest way to achieve that look.
  10. Monochromatic makes the silhouette appear longer and narrower (the same color head to toe and not necessarily black!!).
  11. Different colors or layers of clothes that form horizontal lines make the silhouette look shorter and wider.
  12. The color that is lighter, brighter, stronger or pattern attracts the eye so DO NOT put those in places where you are trying to minimize or detract attention away from.
  13. Lighter colors do actually make bulk appear “lighter”
  14. Normally pattern adds volume but may be good if the body appears “solid”, “bulky”, or “heavy” to break things up.

The most important take away:
**Take photos of yourself (front, back, and profile) and analyze the photos when in doubt.

I hope you found these as helpful as I did.  We will most likely have another seminar in October.  Let us know if there is something or a topic you’d like covered.

Have a great day!
Kate

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Women's Tank Tops - the good, the bad, and the ugly (well hopefully not the last two!).


Tank Tops seem like a pretty easy and relatively simple category of clothing to get right.  For the most part, tank tops go underneath your clothing or are worn in a casual situation.  So what’s the big deal?

Since starting the company in 2006, a big part of our online business has been focused on creating and offering the most comfortable womens tank tops because a good tank top underneath a beautiful Kate Boggiano blouse makes the perfect office appropriate outfit.    Now, almost 5 years later, our Kate Boggiano Tank Tops (made for us exclusively by Niki Biki) have become an important and well known brand of tank tops.  Here’s a summary of all the great additions of styles to our original “regular length” tank top and what makes each special and unique.

            -Extra long and stretchy spandex tank top
            -Great layering tank top for underneath blouses and tops
            -Neckline is adjustable and will stay put
            -Lightweight
            -Goes with everything
-27 colors and counting!

            -Same great fabric as the regular tank top
            -Good for a shorter torso
            -Buy this if you don’t want to bother with extra material
            -Great to use when you are tucking in shirt or blouse
            -Makes legs look longer especially on a petite woman

            -Same great fabric as the regular and cropped tank top
            -Great for see thru dresses and tunics

            -Same great fabric as the regular and cropped tank top
-Designed for those waning to wear a tank top on its own or with a wider neckline shirt and don’t want bra straps showing.

-Same great fabric as our signature tank top
            -Great for summer on its own
            -Cute layering piece under a summer weight vest

-New ribbed fabric texture using the same yarns as our other tank tops.
            -Perfect for the sporty girl

-Same great fabric as our signature tank top
            -We found that our customers were wearing our regular tank tops throughout their pregnancy and we just made them a little better by adding a little more fabric and more resilient spandex.

New this season from a new manufacturer:
            - New for summer, try our super comfy Metallic Tank Tops
-We love these when you need the extra “wow” factor (dates, big meetings etc)
            -Available in both metallic gold and metallic silver
            -Try one under a Holly tunic
            -New for summer, try our super sexy Sequin Tank Top
            -Great layering tank top as it is super long (2” longer than our Extra Long Tank Top)
            -Great date night sparkly tank top
            -We love it under our white Silk Victoria Bolero

So after 5 years, we think we have a pretty good handle on women’s tank tops.  However, if there is something that we are missing, let us know and we’ll do the best we can to source it, design it, or make it for you.

Have a good one and make sure your tank tops are looking good for the summer months and if not, check out kateboggiano.com to trade up!
Kate