Power Shopper

Cheryl Lampard, founder of Style Matters International, finds great buys, discusses the latest styles and answers your questions

June 2012


Gadgetry for Garments

I take pride in caring for my clothes and accessories, but I get frustrated when the very things I buy to help keep them looking their best either malfunction or just don’t do what they say they will. Deciding enough was enough, I set out to find some really useful aids and gadgets that work. Here are my top five (in no particular order): A mesh laundry bag by Real Simple (and it is). With a fastener that stops the zipper from coming undone, the contents won’t spill out and get tangled and mangled in the washer. It’s not always possible to hand wash bras (although I’d recommend it). Look after your lingerie with this object resembling an oversized cat’s play ball. With your bra safely inside, it’ll be protected from being thrown around in...

Posted at 09:53 PM | Permalink


Sensational Summer Footwear

Steve Madden Suttle sandal at Nordstrom and gladiator sandal from BCBG Waterside My grandmother used to say that if your feet hurt, it shows on your face. In the hottest months of a Southwest Florida summer, feet bear the brunt of the heat. We tend to be out and about more, participating in family activities, and those summer BBQs can mean consuming saltier foods, the result of which may be fluid retention and swollen feet. So what are the best shoes to beat the heat? Strappy sandals letting the air to our toes are cooling, but choose wider straps if you’re standing for long periods of time. Otherwise, those sexy, narrow straps may feel more like strips of steel cutting into your feet by the end of the day. Flat shoes are the most comfortable in heat and humidity,...

Posted at 09:47 PM | Permalink


Fabulous Father's Day

Father’s Day was founded in 1910, two years after the successful introduction of Mother’s Day, to celebrate fathers and honor their role in society. While mothers are showered with thoughtful gifts, poor old dads tend to be the butt of everyone’s jokes, with gifts to match. A couple of years ago a poll by a national newspaper revealed that two of the top five most unwanted Father’s Day gifts were novelty ties and socks with silly slogans. (The No.1 item in the poll, which also qualified as the most confusing, was a T-shirt sporting a picture of Darth Vader with the caption “World’s Greatest Dad”—go figure.) So, with Father’s Day on Sunday, here are my gift picks for dads which, depending on his style, are sure to please: For action-man dad, some bright...

Posted at 10:30 PM | Permalink


Sizzling Swimwear

If there’s one garment that many a woman would like to put off shopping for, it’s an item of swimwear. I confess to being in that group and would happily wait for fashion to cycle back around to the return of the Victorian bathing suit. Bad news for me is that’s not going to happen. Good news for all of us is there are so many different options, there really is something for everyone and every body type. Big swimwear trends this year are belted swimsuits, bandeau styles, one-shoulder suits, ruffles, and retro-inspired, high-waisted two-pieces. Colors abound, either in patterns or solid bold brights; metallics such as gold, pewter and bronze are edgy alternatives to staples such as black and navy. Some beachwear basics before you bare: Shaped bandeau...

Posted at 07:06 PM | Permalink


Pens with Pizzazz

Surrounded as we are by so many wonderful gadgets and such electronic wizardry, we are all typing, texting and tapping out the written word, so it might appear that any writing instrument producing ink will do to sign the odd document that comes our way. My view is that’s exactly why it’s worth having something special with which to sign on the dotted line! One gentleman I know has an ever-expanding collection of pens, but he doesn’t just keep them in a glass case to look at; he selects and uses a different one every day. In meetings, his pens become talking points, and in front of a new client they are a very effective ice-breaker. There is something extremely satisfying in holding a beautiful pen. The weight of it in your hand, the texture and feel of the casing, the...

Posted at 09:14 PM | Permalink


Bags of Style

Do you regard the bags in your closet as more than just accessories? I’ve always felt that bags, just like jewelry, become part of our identity. We can express the different sides of our personalities with different bags—without changing our entire outfit. If you’re required to wear a uniform or comply with a specific dress code, your bag becomes an even more important statement with which to express your style.   I recently came across a collection of handmade bags crafted by an artist who takes a sculptural approach to her designs to bring out the natural beauty of the materials she uses. “For me it is more about form and spirit of design,” says Barbara Snyderman, the Fort Myers-based bag and jewelry designer. She combines materials such as butter-soft leathers...

Posted at 08:52 PM | Permalink