Go Big (+ Bold) or Go Home - Among Other Things (The Blog)

Go Big (+ Bold) or Go Home

These colorful, cascading ruffles are modern to the max — especially when paired with pink pleats. Miami, baby!

The city of Miami seems to be synonymous with art deco.

… Or so I’ve gathered, since I spent a few days in the Magic City late last month. (Yes, that’s really its nickname — although I won’t lie, I had to Google!)

chicago fashion style blogger hallie wilson wearing statement shoulders asymmetrical shirts for women bold bright shopbop

Quick back-story: I wasn’t supposed to spend more than one night on South Beach — but once our weekend was thrown off course by the shitshow that is (was) Fyre Festival, we ended up staying the entire weekend — once we got back to US soil, that is.

I know I keep mentioning the debacle and I promise my recap/the story will be up mid-day tomorrow… At last! It’s a good one.

So more on that later, cool?


For real, though. In wandering around Miami’s Design District, in and out of the sky-high buildings downtown on Brickell Avenue, and even along the infamous Collins Avenue in South Beach, I felt like I was in an architectural treasure chest of sorts.

My outfits, as a result, seemed to follow suit.

chicago lifestyle fashion blogger hallie wilson wearing style mafia one shoulder statement shirt red with pink maxi skirt chicago blogger how to wear red off the shoulder statement top for women bloggers show how to style pink and red together with black accessories

This shirt is really something, huh?

…The whole look is, actually. And to that I say hell YAS!

how to wear statement one off the shoulder top trend this summer

It had to be the cascading ruffles down the left shoulder, because it was nothing but sartorial love at first sight with this over-the-top — err, top.

About the brand, real quick: If you’re unfamiliar, the line is called Style Mafia — it’s moderately priced, available on Shopbop and the like — and GIRL do they make a statement sleeve. (Which is my seasonal style MO, as we’ve discussed in the most recent batch of outfits.)

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It was an innocent Wednesday night unlike any other a few weeks ago.

You know it well, I imagine. You’re cross-legged on the couch, sipping your first (or second) glass of wine. All of a sudden, one thing leads to another and the next thing you know you’re coming to from your online shopping blackout quicker than you can say #AddtoCart.

… The heart wants what the heart wants.

I was drawn to how different this piece was and — more notably — the fact that it was priced at only $89. Surprising, right? (As an FYI, it comes in white, too.My credit card is sittin’ pretty amid a block of ice in the freezer.)

best dressed in chicago cult gaia natural bamboo Black acrylic handbag

Good purchase, all-in-all — but there was one nagging problem that I imagine was brought on by a bit of buyer’s remorse: I had no freakin’ idea what to wear with it.

… Or how to style it. Or, I mean, where the hell to even wear it. It’s really — well, loud. Very loud.

I love you, Chicago, but you’ve been known to cast an occasional eye at anything that ain’t in the realm of tank tops and jeans… Not that there’s anything wrong with that, of course. You can’t go wrong there!

Either way, it’s fun to be a little extra, I think… Life’s too fucking short.


top bloggers show how to wear a statement shirt with a pink maxi skirt and cult gaia black bag

So enter Miami, baby. Ding, ding, ding!

When I was figuring out what to wear with my new favorite “Shirt That Screams Do Less,” I figured I may as well go big or go home, so-to-speak.

I live for a pink-and-red colorblock situation, so I pulled out a pink pleated skirt and threw it on over top. Happily, the ensemble just worked because it’s anchored with black accessories.

You can be honest: Do you like? How/would you wear it differently?

(Skirt talk, right quick: The style I’m wearing is old from a NYC-based designer, Tome. ASOS has an identical version for less than $55, and here’s a non-pleated version in a fuchsia hue, if that’s more your forte. The asymmetrical version is worth a look, too. So damn adorable.)

top chicago fashion blogger wearing pink tome skirt and red style mafia statement shoulders asymmetrical off the shoulder top

Given that I’m having such a moment with a good Statement Sleeve this season, I did some digging for similar-looking styles (as well as a few that are slightly more modest in design). I found a handful of price points spanning everything from flutter sleeves to ruffled crop tops.

Among my favorites are this one-shoulder crop top, a surprisingly tasteful midriff-baring blouse and this lovely little bow-tie number (peep those ruffled sleeves, though). You can click below to browse a few more options — all ranging in price point:

Click to shop:

Hallie’s picks:

ASTR one-shoulder crop top ($59) | Alice + Olivia ruffled crop top ($224)
TULAROSA bow-tie blouse ($138)


Oh yes, and as for the black acrylic handbag: It’s the “Ark” bag by Cult Gaia.

I’ve wanted it forever and finally purchased a few weeks ago as soon as it came back in stock… It’s really cute and a total conversation starter, but don’t plan bring it anywhere that you’d be annoyed not having your bag on your shoulder.

I meaaan, what’s a little arthritis for this accessory beaut, right?

unique Black acrylic handbag cult gaia

If you’re interested, know that nearly the only place you’ll find it is on the brand’s website — seems to be sold out everywhere else.


Bold and bright, please and thank you.

Now, do we think this is an ensemble I can get away with repeating twice in one week(end)…?

cool outfits for summer can you wear pink and red to a dressy formal event

… I know, I’m kidding!

On that note: Here’s lookin’ at you, Friday… Few more days, my friends!

*In this post:


Pleated skirt: Tome (identical style here; also similar here and here under $50)
Ruffled one-shoulder shirt: Style Mafia (also comes in white)
Black strappy sandals: Steve Madden
Black acrylic handbag: Cult Gaia black bag (in ‘Small’)
Sunglasses: Preen (old, I also love this pair of aviators)


Foundation: bareMinerals Complexion Rescue in ‘Beige Natural’
Lip color: Laura Mercier ‘Velour Lovers’ lip color (in Boudoir)


Luccia Lowenthal Photography


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