Shimmer and Shine this Holiday Season

Our Darling Ludella Hahn gracefully models our Marie dress in Shimmer Slate & Gold. This print has a subtle metallic coat in the print (which we love this time of year). All of our metallic prints are even lovlier in person and you'll LOVE how they play in the light. For something special this season, turn your attention to our Shimmer collection of dresses... Marie and Irene dresses are ALL IN STOCK now in all sizes. Ready to ship! I know you need something stunning for that Holiday party, Honey. We got you!!
Create some Holiday Magic this season in our special Shimmer Prints!     Shop the Marie Dress in Gold: http://bit.ly/1rYltFd Shop the Marie Dress in Slate Shimmer: http://bit.ly/1zSdPke Shop the Irene Dress in Gold Shimmer: http://bit.ly/12nXGHT Shop the Irene Dress in Slate Shimmer: http://bit.ly/1yPxoKt

A Vintage Vanity Pays a visit...

With trusty video cam and tripod in hand, Jennifer of a Vintage Vanity was ever-so ready to interview me about Heart of Haute. In this 13 minute video, you'll learn a little bit of the history behind this company, more about myself, and how we do things around here!

Body Positivity and Why Plus-size Models Are Awesome!

Hello! Katrina Marie here! (How's it going?) I don't normally like to get too serious, or post entries that can read like a novel, but I really wanted to take a moment to bring up a topic that happens to be very near and dear to my own heart: body positivity (YAY!) I know from my own experience that there seems to be a lot of confusion regarding what body positivity actually is. Some have even dared to argue that body positivity promotes unhealthy lifestyles and obesity (Nope! Keep reading, please.)   Body positivity focuses on self-love, and learning to be comfortable in your own skin, regardless of what number the scale happens to hit.  It's also about educating people (including yourself) about body autonomy by helping others realize that no one really has the right to comment on or judge someone else's body.  Unfortunately, the media has an idea of what beauty should look like, and they have no qualms constantly reminding us that we, the every day Janes of the world, do not fit their mold.  We're constantly shown images of women in their photoshopped “perfection,” and then we're told what steps to take in order to achieve said “perfection.”  This is not only damaging to women (for obvious reasons,) but men are affected as well.  We live in a society where women everywhere are kind of tricked into working to achieve some spoon-fed notion of what beauty is, and men are holding women to the same, unrealistic standards.  This doesn't just apply to overweight women of today.  Back in the 1950s, women were often criticized for being underweight, and for bodies lacking in curves (wait, what?!) vintage weight gain ad 2 vintage weight gain ad 3 vintage weight gain ad

 Vintage weight gain ads.

Let's take a moment to break down what that tells us:  The media has been dictating to women how we should look, and teaching men what they should find attractive in a woman's physical appearance for decades! Let that sink in just for a second. I don't know about you, but realizing that alone, was enough for a lightbulb to go off inside my ever-analytical brain.  I thought, “No amount of energy I spend trying to make others happy with my body image will do, because there will always be someone who will object. You can't make everyone happy. So, why not focus on making sure you're happy with yourself?” Now, I'm not saying I've managed to get to that point of ultimate and complete self-love.  In all honesty, it will likely be a lifelong fight. What I have learned so far, is that once you get to the point where you can accept your body for all its perfect imperfection (see what I did there?), then other people's opinions don't matter so much. If it doesn't bother you, other people can't use it against you. This is why I look up to the women (and men) that constantly defy and rebel against the media to remind us that beauty truly does come in all shapes and sizes.  Mindy Kaling, Tess Munster, and Christina Hendricks are just a few that come to mind.

plussizeblogMindy Kaling, Tess Munster, Christina Hendricks

  While it's awesome that celebrities, and others in the public eye, make a point to take a stand for body positivity, it's just as important for us to take a stand to make a difference in our everyday lives. (This is the part where I tie everything together, I promise!) One of my favorite things about pinup culture, is that pinups are known to have voluptuous, hourglass curves.  (Of course, this may have been indicative of what the media's idea of beauty was at the time, but that's another point for a different day.) This aesthetic has managed to withstand the test of time, and is seen in modern pinup culture today. That being said, the difference is that with modern pinup culture, even women with less than hourglass curves can dip their pointed toes into the “pinup world” by picking out their favorite vintage inspired looks (Heart of Haute dresses included, of course!) and booking a pinup photo shoot with a local photographer. We've had the pleasure of working with Miss Tara of Tara O. Photos. While Tara is a talented photographer all around, she specializes in pinup photography, and always proclaims that ANY woman can try pinup modeling (and she's right!)   While plus size fashion seems to have really only adopted contemporary trends in more recent years, it's still an area of fashion that I believe is often overlooked. Luckily, it's really caught on that “the chubby girls” have as much fashion sense as anyone else. So, plus-size girls (myself included) are starting to have more options when it comes to self-expression through clothing. Heart of Haute is proud to offer several styles in our plus-sizes (1XL and 2XL.) We're also proud to feature plus-size models who are not only rocking our clothing and working it in front of a camera, but who are also doing really awesome things to makes waves in the industry and beyond it.     Miss Shana Nicole hails from Houston, Texas. In addition to the numerous pinup magazine covers on which she's been featured, she is also the Owner and Editor-in-Chief of Atomic Bombshells Magazine. She's also proud to be a founding member of Benefit Betties, a Houston based, non-profit pin-up charity group.  You can even catch this bombshell as a guest performer for the Houston Burlesque Revue. shananicolediner

Shana Nicole in the Diner Dress in Black (Photo Credit: Paper Moon Photography by Charlie Girl)

shananicolesailorShana Nicole in the Sailor Dress in Navy (Photo Credit: Paper Moon Photography by Charlie Girl)

shananicolebevShana Nicole in the Beverly Dress in Black Gingham (Photo Credit: Paper Moon Photography by Charlie Girl)

    Miss Teer Wayde is a freckled beauty from down under, Melbourne, Australia. She is a fashion and editorial model signed with Bella Model Management in Australia, and she also runs the popular fashion blog Curves to Kill. You may remember her from an interview with Mandie Bee that was featured here on our blog in the past.

teerwaydehilaryblkdot Teer Wayde in the Hillary Dress in Black Dot (Photo Credit: Nic Doncon)

teerwaydemontelakeTeer Wayde in the Monte Carlo Dress in Lake (Photo Credit: Nic Doncon)

teerwaydestripeyTeer Wayde in the Marilyn Top in Stripey & the Vogue Pencil Skirt in Black (Photo Credit: Nic Doncon)

teerwaydemarleenblkTeer Wayde in the Marleen Dress in Black (Photo Credit: Tara O. Photos)

  Two different ladies on opposite ends of the globe with at least one very important thing in common (aside from their killer fashion sense, of course): they know they're beautiful (inside and out) and they know that no one's opinion of them will change that.  So the next time you look at yourself in the mirror (whether you've decided to strut your stuff in Heart of Haute that day or not,) take a moment to remember that you are wonderfully unique, and your perfectly imperfect awesome self is top notch, Heart of Haute loveliness!  You go, girl! ;)     With Love & No Regrets, Katrina Marie   **Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blog post are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Heart of Haute or any of its other employees.**

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

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Flower hair accessory heartofhaute.com

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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

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Nanette lepore piperlime.gap.com

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G.H. Bass shoes bassshoes.harborghb.com

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