Traveling in Style from the US to Europe at Any Price

August, 15, 2011

Traveling in Style from the US to Europe at Any Price

If you live in the US like me, and are taking a trip to Europe after the summer days die down, you can seamlessly travel across the sea in the latest style by wearing pleats. No they aren’t just for school girls this fall! Many American and European fashion designs are embodying what I call “powerful femininity.” They’re emphasizing elements of architectural sophistication while adding girly flair. This is done in some fall lines by incorporating pleats—from subtle to pronounced.

Take the Spanish designer Amaya Arzuaga. Her fall collection, shown at the Paris Fashion Week, is inspired by mathematics. She uses shapes ranging from linear to curved pleats—often in the same garment. The combination of stark lines with curves says, “I can be both kick-ass and cutesy all at once!” Other European brands, like France’s Derhy and Givenchy, also feature pleats for fall.

Likewise, American designer Vera Wang focuses on pleats in her fall collection. Jonathan Simkhai, a New York designer whose brand is self-described as bringing “forth classic codes translated into sexy and feminine silhouettes” also has pleated items for fall. Notably, Milly designer Michelle Smith has followed suit. She received her training in New York and Paris—mixing the best of both fashion hubs.

No matter what your budget is, you can look ravishingly stylish. LA-based shows celebrity outfits with links to places where you can purchase more reasonably-priced look-alikes. If you want to go econo, there are always knockoff outfits at outlets like the American company Forever 21 and the Swedish H&M. Who says you can’t be star-studded without maxing out your credit card?

To see how easy it is to double dip an outfit—wear it at home and overseas—while being trendy in both places, here is a picture of me wearing a Calvin Klein dress from the American fall line next to a model wearing a Derhy dress from the French fall collection. Although the French dress is fuller and made from softer, more flowing fabric, both garments have diagonal pleats beginning at the right shoulder and going toward the left hip, and more pleats starting underneath the bodice seam. They also each have one accent piece. The French dress has a decorative bow, and the American frock has a decorative gold zipper on the left shoulder. I got this Calvin Klein at a discount during a 2011 fall presale. Such sales can help you save on your new look. Then you can show off your powerful femininity regardless of whether you stay at home or travel abroad. According to MillionLooks, a cutting-edge fashion site, pleats will be hot not only for fall, but for winter…so this one wardrobe tip can make you a style queen until spring!

  1. Sara says:

    Great tips! I luv that you take current issues & give them fresh perspective. Very helpful!

  2. Betty says:

    Please continue writing about fashion!!! You always look so stylish in your photos and videos!=)

  3. ann h says:

    fun! would like you to do a post on makeup that’s easy for travel!

  4. Julie C says:

    KCC you’re right. I went to a fall fashion show and there were gobs of pleats! Your phase “powerful femininity” nicely describes what I saw. I’d like you to write more about fashion too. Makeup’s a good topic. When I travel I try to pack light. I need great travel makeup that’s compact.

  5. Julie C says:

    How about making a video about great travel makeup? You could show how to use it. I SO LOVE your videos! You always look gorgeous!

  6. Katie says:

    Ive seen so much talk about this in magazines for the upcoming fall! Pleats are so flattering…cant wait. Love your nude tone shoes too..very in! Im excited that fall fashions seems like itll be more bright colors as well!

  7. Maria says:

    I’ve seen pleats in fall lines too–but mostly on retro skirts as seperate pieces. After reading your analysis, I remember seeing pleats on dresses in a new “architectural” way as you describe. you’re so aware of trends. It’s like your book. You explain things that are right in front of us but we don’t notice til you point it out–and it’s all so useful!

  8. Katherine Chloé Cahoon says:

    Thank you all for your wonderful comments! Ann and Julie, I love your idea about posting on travel makeup. I’ll add it to my list of upcoming videos:)

  9. Louise says:

    Thanks for the tips Katherine! I’m always looking for ways to take my clothes I’ve bought in America and have them work overseas! It’s interesting how cultures can be different in so many ways but have similar basis for things like fashion. I always consider Europe to be so much more fashionable than American but it’s reassuring to see that we can keep up with the fashionistas of France and Italy! I’ll make sure to pack some pleated skirts for my study abroad trip and keep an eye out for more universal trends!

  10. Kate says:

    Pleats are definitely all over the place this season. I love that you point out ways that we can look fashionable both at home and overseas. I personally love to blend in with the culture that I’m visiting. When I was in France last summer I noticed most of the women over there wore skirts and sundresses, but almost no shorts. I wonder if you’ve noticed this too on any of your travels, skirts vs shorts for European women?

  11. Katherine Chloé Cahoon says:

    Kate, good question! I’ve noticed that many European women shun shorts. On trips, I’ve even seen Europeans give traveling girls who wear them strange looks. In warm weather, sundresses and lightweight skirts are in vogue overseas.

  12. Julie C says:

    TY! I’m going to Europe next spring. I hope you get the travel makeup vid out in time for me to pack. Your videos are incredible–read that you do absolutely everything on them yourself (AMAZING!) so I understand if it takes some time.

  13. Julie C says:

    Other helpful travel posts or videos would be—what purses to take on a trip, good travel cameras, good basic travel clothes, how to pack for a trip Your posts are so well thought out and helpful. They’re my guilty pleasure!


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