The Angelica Collection

With September not too far off, we'll soon be saying “So long!” to Sweet Summer.  Warm nights will turn into crisp evenings as Autumn makes its way in.  To ease the transition into the next season, add a bit of fashion heaven to your wardrobe with our Angelica Collection.   Summer doesn't officially end until the Autumnal Equinox on September 22nd, so there's still plenty of time to take advantage of “bare shoulder weather.”  The Sweetie Dress, in Angelica Purple (top) and Angelica Pink (bottom) is perfect for enjoying the still warm evenings at the end of summer.  Show of your tanned shoulders with this halter dress which has princess seams and ties in the back for a great fit. LinaSweetiePurpleAngelicalinaSDpinkAngelica     Though our Sweetie Dress is one of our best-selling styles.  Don't worry, we have other styles to choose from!  The Hillary Dress in Angelica Pink also has princess seams and ties in the back.  This dress also has an empire waist (for an even better fit) and a bow tie at the collar for a finishing touch (I don't know about you, but I LOVE bows!) LinaHillaryPinkAngelica   Not a fan of an empire waist?  Or maybe you're looking for a more simple silhouette?  The Monique Dress in Angelica Turquoise might be more to your liking.  This dress has a bateau neckline with an A-line skirt – simple, but equally as flattering.  It even comes with a matching belt! LinaMoniqueBlueAngelica     Once the summer heat starts to fade, the cooler air might have you wanting a bit more coverage.  Pairing these dresses with a cute cardigan usually does the trick, or you might opt for a style that will cover your shoulders.  The Beverly Dress in Angelica Purple has those same features for a great fit – princess seams, ties in the back, and an empire waist – all in one fantastic dress (with sleeves!)  Another one of our best-sellers, this dress also has a rounded collar with a cute self tie. linabeverlypurpleangelica     Want even more coverage? Then the Mallory Dress in Angelica Turquoise is the dress for you. This dress has a full skirt, empire waist, and ties to cinch in the middle. Its overlapping V-neckline is also great for Haute Honeys with a more voluptuous figure. It even has cute little bows at the sleeves for an added detail (more bows!) linamalloryblueangelica   My favorite part about this line, is that the fabric itself has a subtle metallic detail that shimmers in the light.  Whether it reflects the sunlight during summer when the days are longer, or glows under the moonlight in the crisp fall air, the Angelica Collection will have you looking heavenly.     With Love & No Regrets, Katrina Marie

Heart of Haute on another Magazine Cover!

Model, Stephanie Jay from the United Kingdom, wears our infamous Diner Dress in Olive on the cover of Delicious Dolls magazine!

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The New Heart of Haute Fashion Catalog for 2014, version 1

It is complete. The thing I work the hardest and longest hours on. One of the most important pieces of media we create over here at Heart of Haute. It's like "The Book" in the movie, The Devil Wears Prada

Luckily I'm much happier than Merril Streep's character and I don't really drink coffee a certain way and I am very kind to my assistants. In fact, I find myself assisting them more often....What? You haven't seen that movie? I swear it's not a chick flick. It's really good.

Anyway- what am I talking about? OH YES!  It's our Bi-Annual catalog. Yes, I make this catalog for our wholesale customers (those are customers who purchase our garments in bulk to resell in their shops), but I also make it available for everyone to view. Why? Well, honestly after all that hard work I put into it- and this time I shot and edited about 40% of the images myself- I want to TELL EVERYONE ABOUT IT!!! Yes, I am proud and usually exhausted when this project is complete.  The great thing about working on this catalog is that each one gets better and evolves from the one before it.  I am always learning new things about editing and photography when I make this thing.  I dread the 3-4 weeks I spend working on this book, but I also look forward to the challenges it brings. The headaches and heartaches, but in the end, the finished product is well worth it.

I share it with everyone because we group our products in fabric families so you can see the line as a whole rather than figuring out what prints the Beverly does or doesn't come in. You also get a sneak peak at what will be available in the coming months....so you know how to plan out your wardrobe for next Spring of course!!!

With Love & No Regrets!

Mandie Bee

Summer Sugar Stripes

Summer's in full swing, Heart of Haute-lovers, and we have great new styles perfect for all the fun in the sun you'll be having! To help you stay true to your style, and stay cool in the heat, take a peek at our new Sugar Stripes Collection.  

The Maybeline Dress (shown below in Purple Stripe and Blue Stripe) is the perfect dress for your next BBQ, beach party, or even a night out at the local county fair. This sleeveless dress, with adjustable straps, is perfect for those hot summer days and warm summer nights. The Maybeline Dress even has pockets (and who doesn't love a dress with pockets?!)

Maybeline Purple Stripe

Maybeline Blue Stripe

Model: Stephanie Weber

Summertime is known for concert season! Headed to go see your favorite artist or band? Whether you're off to see a hot act at the Hollywood Bowl, or the LA Philharmonic at the Walt Disney Hall, you'll be a show stopper wearing the Regina Dress (shown below in Purple Sugar Stripe.) It's just casual enough to be comfortable, but dressy enough for any special occasion. (If you're anything like me, fantastic live music is always a special occasion!) For a fancier venue, dress it up with your favorite pumps, or keep it simple, and more on the casual side, with a cute pair of ballet flats.

Regina Purple Stripe

Model: Dollie Deville (www.therockabillysocialite.com)

  My favorite part about summer is that it stays light out later into the evening. Take advantage of the extra sunshine and show off the Vee Dress. Reflect the blue summer skies in the Blue Sugar Stripe fabric (shown below.) This dress has pockets, also! (Have I sold you on the pockets yet, ladies?)

Vee Blue Stripe

Model: Dollie Deville (www.therockabillysocialite.com)

    Step into the sunshine and off to your next adventure while showing off your fabulous sense of style with our new Stripes Collection.  Don't forget the sunscreen!

Blue Stripe

Models: Stephanie Weber (left,) Dollie Deville (right, www.therockabillysocialite.com)

    With Love & No Regrets, Katrina Marie =^.^=      

Model Spotlight: Dinah DeRosa

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to shoot Miss Dinah DeRosa  in my home for Heart of Haute. I've recently had to take photography into my own hands for our company and I'm learning more and more as I go along.  It's a lot of fun, creative, and also a ton of work. I have a GREAT appreciation for photographers as well as models. I've been on both sides of the camera and I know how much work goes into a shoot for both parties. *whew* Dinah has been modeling since she was 17 and she's a natural. In addition to modeling, you can find her managing the Unique Vintage store in Huntington Beach or dancing on stage for The Hula Girls.  To be graced with Dinah's presence, you'll find yourself not only looking at a very attractive lady, but a very attractive soul. This girl is one of my favorite models to work with for a reason. Very genuine, kind and just a really cool chick! Here's just a few shots from our photo shoot...   dinahmitzilauren dinahmowhiteoribit dinahhhmilan dinahHHmilancelery dinahhhmonteivoryback     With Love & No Regrets, Mandie Bee!

Your Retro Tiki Weekend Wardrobe

Mid century America was crazy for all things tropical and Hawaiian. Many served in the South Pacific during World War II, and returned home with tales of palm trees and rum. Hawaii's 1959 statehood and the advent of quick and more affordable jet travel made it a popular - yet still exotic - travel destination. "Trader Vic" Bergeron opened his first restaurant in California in 1934, serving an approximation of Cantonese food and concocting cocktails like the Mai Tai. All over the country, Polynesian pop culture spread - tiki bars, backyard luaus, and Exotica albums and movies were everywhere. Those who still still celebrate the sips, styles and sounds from this era meet up at various tiki weekend parties all over the country. Two of the biggest are the Hukilau (June 6-9th in Fort Lauderdale) and Tiki Oasis (August 15-18th in San Diego).

257828_10100136482430178_3901742_oMe (on the right) with friends at the Mai Kai

Heart of Haute will help you pack your bags to arrive as the perfect retro tiki pin-up! Having attended a few of these events, here are my tips:
  • Bring more than one bathing suit. A lot of the events are poolside, and you don't want to be pulling on a soggy suit after a midnight dip in the Ocean. A stylish swimsuit cover up, like our quick drying Knotty Dress, is also a must.
  • At the Hukilau, the Mai Kai can be quite warm inside. I like a cocktail dress that will still keep me cool. The Sweetie Dress in Hip Kitty has an authentic vintage shape, and a print that will help you stand out in the sea of floral aloha wear. Get to the Mai Kai with plenty of time before your dinner show reservation to enjoy the gardens and the great happy hour prices in the Molokai Bar. The Moonkist Coconut is my favorite drink.
  • The Paradise Dress has a great retro wiggle dress shape in a perfect tropical pattern, with a faux sarong front that ties at the waist.
  • There is a lot of standing, dancing, and walking around. I like wedges for just a little more comfort.
  • Tiki Oasis has a theme each year - for 2013, it's "Hulabilly." For this mix of Hawaiian and country rockabilly style, bring our Ellie Tie Front Top in Red Gingham, a sweet Heart of Haute top, or gingham headbands and hair bows. Our best selling Sweetie Dress comes in red, blue, olive, and black gingham - the perfect fit for this "Hawaiian Hootenanny."
  • Accessories! These parties are not the time to be subtle. I always bring tons of hair flowers, sunglasses, and jewelry. A few extra to loan to your best friend is always a good plan.
  • I don't actually stay at the official Hukilau hotel(s). I like the Best Western Oceanside. It's right next door and has a cute little pool and free breakfast.
  • Don't overdo it! Take a nap every afternoon and alternate drinks with water. Have some snacks in your room and wear sunscreen.
Love & Moonkist Coconuts, Mrs. V  
Tiki Weekend Style

Dress heartofhaute.com

Dress heartofhaute.com

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Dress heartofhaute.com

Sarong swimsuit pinupgirlclothing.com

Mustard heartofhaute.com

Flower hair accessory heartofhaute.com

Flower hair accessory heartofhaute.com

Red Gingham heartofhaute.com

Nine West ChillPill vip.zappos.com

Black heartofhaute.com

Like it and Win it Contests on Facebook!

Heya Heart of Haute Fans! It's Mandie Bee here. I wanted to share with you a little somethin' new I've been promoting recently.  The "Like" it and Win it contest!  1-2 times a month, I will post a specific item that will be up for grabs! 1 lucky random winner will be chosen within days of the contest start and win the featured dress!

This Week's Like it and Win it dress is the Sweetie Dress in Black Cerise!

Be sure you join us on Facebook to get in on the fun!

http://facebook.com/heartbreakerfashions

With Love & No Regrets,

Mandie Bee

Heart of Haute: Attire for the Workplace

For many years, I had my "work clothes" and my "real clothes." My work clothes were your typical boring unflattering dress pants, ill-fitting collared shirts, and floppy cardigan sweaters that I had somehow decided were what office jobs required. I put much more thought and effort into my "real clothes" and felt more comfortable in the unique dresses and outfits I wore to fun events with my friends. I have since largely integrated my work wardrobe and my "real clothes." I no longer have a division in my closet, and I am not ashamed to meet friends at the tiki bar right after work (in fact, sometimes that mai tai is essential and must be acquired ASAP). Many of us have requirements for work wear (no jeans, covering tattoos, natural hair colors) that are limiting, but they don't make expressing your style and feeling great impossible. If you are in a conservative industry or position of authority (yes, and yes for me), the rules (or rules you place on yourself) may be even stricter. Thankfully, a lot of retro dresses and other pieces work well for the office. I like skirts and dresses for work to touch the top of my knee when standing. Feel free to disregard my suggestions if you are confident that you are in a more creative or permissive arena, but I don't think that miniskirts belong at any type of office job. I also abide by no cleavage at work, but daring dresses and tops can easily be worn with a scarf or camisole. A few items that do more than their share of heavy lifting in my work wardrobe: Dresses - comfortable, cute, and great for those mornings when you forgot to pick an outfit the night before - no decisions to make! I wear both knit and cotton dresses most days of the week. Ponte knit is a great fabric that is comfortable yet has a very refined look. Cotton dresses will keep you looking sharper and feeling more comfortable in the warmer months. High-waisted black pencil skirt - any top tucked into this looks more pulled together. The three piece rule can also be helpful. Three pieces can make a more complete looking outfit. Skirt, shirt, sweater. Pants, top, scarf. Dress, jacket, scarf. Plain black blazer - great for making any outfit look like serious business. Look for jackets that are fully lined. A structured blazer thrown over a cotton dress like the Monique is a great look, and an easy way to make more casual dresses work appropriate. Leave the blazer at work during the summer to take the chill off of excessive air conditioning. A sleeveless Ella blouse and swing skirt like our Twirl Skirt is an outfit that can keep you cool during a hot commute. My business travel and or conference uniform is one blazer thrown over several knit dresses. It is as put-together as a suit and certainly more comfortable for long days in meetings. A large tote bag is essential for carrying your shoes, lunch, work, purse, and even gym clothes without looking like an overburdened pack rat. I have this canvas tote - it is stiff enough to keep its shape well, and has a zip top. It is decent enough to carry into a meeting, yet can be thrown into the washing machine. With spring comes many graduations, and then new jobs and internships. Take some time to really think about the look that you want to project at work, and invest in a few key pieces. You will feel better, and look great – the corner office is waiting for you! Mrs. V
Retro style at work

Dress heartofhaute.com

Dress heartofhaute.com

Dress heartofhaute.com

Coffee shop modcloth.com

Blazer modcloth.com

Nanette lepore piperlime.gap.com

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Lining shoes modcloth.com

Wedge heels modcloth.com

G.H. Bass shoes bassshoes.harborghb.com

Blue heartofhaute.com

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What Do I Wear to This Wedding?

Spring is finally here - warmer days, blooming flowers, and a pile of wedding invitations in your mailbox. Weddings now are not always the church and banquet hall celebrations of the past. Couples have gotten more creative, and often more casual. Looking for the perfect dress to wear to a non-traditional (or traditional) wedding? Heartbreaker has you covered! You never thought your wildest friend would ever settle down, but she is getting hitched in Vegas! It's sure to be an outrageous party, and you want to look the part. The Sweetie Dress in (limited edition) Hip Kitty leopard fabric will look right at home on the Strip, downtown on Fremont street, or posing with the Elvis Impersonator who performs the ceremony. Don't forget a sweater to ward off the freezing casino air conditioning, and a hat for a hungover pool day. For your very practical and private friend, there was no ceremony - they simply went down to the courthouse on a Tuesday. For the informal after party at a local bar, try our popular Beverly Dress in Black Dynasty. The gold metallic print elevates it from typical daytime wear. For a more traditional, semi formal wedding, try the Elsie or Elaine Dresses by Heart of Haute. These cocktail dresses are polished  and versatile, whether you prefer a fitted or fuller skirt. Sheer black stockings and your highest heels complete the look. For a tropical destination wedding, the Rebecca Dress has a full skirt and halter top that will keep you cool and comfortable in the sun and sand. Remember your sunglasses, sunscreen, and no tanning until the ceremony is over - no one wants to be the lobster sunburn girl in the photos! Kork Ease Sandals are comfortable, come in many colors and heel heights, and look better than flip flops. For a casual ceremony in the country (or even a bridal shower), try our Aimee Dress in (limited) Strawberry Patch. The Marseilles Dress in the Katherine Floral Print is a great choice for a chic country or beach wedding. For wedding gift ideas, I like a couple of cookbooks (Nigel Slater and Mark Bittman are both great), and a cast iron skillet. It is something that every kitchen (and barbeque grill, and campsite) needs, and one will last a lifetime. I hope that you have a great summer filled with top shelf open bars, good appetizers, and inspired dance moves gleaned from other people's parents! Mrs. V
What to Wear to Weddings - Summer 2013

For the Ethical Shopper - Why Buy American Made?

Hello Heart of Haute Fans, I will warn you now, this wont exactly be the most feel-good or happy post. In fact, it may be eye opening to some of you or saddening. I want to address something that we feel strongly about and that is sweatshop labor. We believe in paying people fair wages and providing a comfortable work environment for our employees. Not just because it's the law, but because we want to! We know that happy employees makes good quality products and service.

I'm sure many people are aware of the concept of what a sweatshop is. The majority of items you can buy from the mall or big box stores, often called "fast fashion," are made overseas in sweatshop factories all around the world. Check the label in the dress you're trying on, it will surely say  "Made in China" or Bangladesh or Indonesia or Vietnam or Mexico... There were two recent catastrophes in Bangladesh. These disasters occurred due to the factory owner neglecting to keep the building safe for working environments.

From the industrial revolution, to the scandals involving Nike in the 1990s, working conditions that produce consumer goods have often been questionable. In 2013, there was a fire in a garment factory, which provided items to WalMart, that left 112 dead.  On April 24th of 2013, a garment factory building collapsed, which left more than 500 people dead. The building collapsed because of power generators shaking the walls. Both of these incidents could have been avoided if upgrades were made to the buildings, and with all the money the companies are making from this cheap labor, you would hope they would at least take that responsibility.  It's just unfortunate - and issues like these continue today.

So what can you do?  There are many alternatives to fast fashion, but it requires a little extra time and creativity.  You can also make a personal effort to avoid spending money in places that you know use sweatshop labor.

  • Shop American-  As you know, Heart of Haute is all made in the US within a 20 mile radius of our main office in Los Angeles county, if not under our own roof in San Dimas.  Shopping for products made in the US means you're supporting American jobs and you'll also find  yourself with a better quality item.
  • Shop Etsy- There are tons of young entrepreneurs  who are hungry to share their  unique designs with the world! You can help them and have a good experience. There is something very special about knowing an item is one-of-a-kind or maybe even made just for you. www.etsy.com
  • Shop Vintage- I know we love shopping for vintage! These items always come with their own story and are also usually much better quality than most things you can find today. Compare a vintage dress from 1962  to a contemporary  mall-bought dress. There's a reason that Vintage dress has lasted as long as it has.
  • Shop Recycled- Sure, you have to sift through racks of random articles of clothing.  Check out places that also donate to support good causes: Buffalo Exchange, Out of the Closet, and Goodwill.

Interested in learning more?  Check out this book, Overdressed  by Elizabeth Cline. She explores the world of cheap and fast fashion. This site even includes a list of online stores and designers that follow ethical practices. So, I do apologize if this has left you feeling icky or sad about your own shopping habits- that is certainly not my goal.  Shopping and new clothing should make us feel good. I think if we become more aware of the connection we have with the maker of our items, it gives us reason to continue to make good choices for ourselves.

With Love & No Regrets, Mandie Bee