Fashion is Fleeting, but Style is Forever

Fashion is Fleeting, but Style is Forever

Tracey Lankford not only has great style, but a great philosophy about fashion and how to buy clothes that make you look and feel great for every occasion. Tracey refers to her style as an evolution that morphs throughout time depending on age, career, or how her body changes. She has experienced seven different careers and has finally found her calling and passion in fashion as a Doncaster District Manager. Pictured, Tracey is wearing a classic black blazer by White House Black Market, black lace pants and a floral poet style blouse that used an Emilio Pucci pattern; both by Doncaster.

Tracey’s psychedelic bright colored pumps had a Pucci feel to them as well, but were designed by Amalfi. She said that she’s not afraid to add an element of color and play around with mixing patterns to all of her outfits.

Tracey layered her outfit with a decadent faux leather rosette black jacket by Doncaster along with a custom made natural stone and crystal necklace by an artist in Pittsburgh. She carried an oversized black Dooney & Bourke nylon bag with saddle leather straps and bridle hardware. When I asked for some style pointers she had some good ones:1. Purchase pieces you really love….even basic pieces can have unique detail and be truly special if you buy what you love.2. Purchase the best quality pieces which you can afford at that time – depending on your budget during that phase of life.3. Take very good care of your pieces. Some of my most cherished designer items are literally decades old.4. Be confident and try mixing textures, color and patterns.5. Pay attention to tailoring too! Fit is it!

I spotted Ezra Tilaye – without losing his sharp and sophisticated edge – wearing a rather casual and simplistic look. His Wrangler khaki pants and light blue Express short sleeve oxford had a clean and crisp structure that seemed to have been tailor-made for him. In addition to wearing a classic cognac leather Oxford shoe, both versatile and functional, by Steve Madden, Ezra managed to make the outfit his own by adding a mix of unique skull and beaded bracelets.

The bracelets, made of wood, were purchased from YogaWorks, an unlikely source, but excellent find! He paired these with other accessories like his large black leather Diesel watch and tortoise shell H&M sunglasses. “Understanding yourself, your unapologetic image (for good or bad), and combining the two into what you feel is aesthetically pleasing” was one of the greatest pieces of advice I received from Ezra. He said that NFL Hall of Famer, Deon Sanders, left a lasting impression on his view on fashion. “When you look good, you feel good. When you feel good, you play good. And when you play good, you get paid good.” A very wise style mantra indeed!

FOUND – I spotted a few festive finds in The Zone as I was heading to my car after work. I had fun creating an outfit using a combination of vintage pieces such as the wide leg heart and floral print pant with a new handmade red cape. The cape had a print lining and vibrant floral stitch detail, a cheerful add-on that can transform any outfit into a high-fashion statement and proving you can have fun with clothing. The cape was made by Nicolette Le Faye, a Baltimore costume and dress maker. I literally topped the outfit off with a red beret; a classic piece but also super cute! And I will let you in on a little secret, the entire outfit was less than 100 bucks.

Elizabeth Massing

One look at Elizabeth Massing and you see her fabulous sense of style and artistic self-expression. She combines old and new, classic and trendy, luxurious items and vintage steals.  “Fashion and what you wear should be a statement of who you are and how you feel. You shouldn’t be scared to take risks. It should be fun and make you feel good, no matter your budget or fashion experience,” she says. For Elizabeth, fashion is a way to tell her story.  “I like my stories full of fun and excitement, history and romance, and - from time to time - a little drama. Bold fabrics give me a thrill. Couture makes me swoon. Daring pairings are a magnetic force I cannot overcome,” says this B-more native. Elizabeth also loves to see the “stories” other people tell, which may come from her work in publishing and media as HR Director for The Agora Companies, where - she says - creativity and originality is always encouraged. Now, she’ll be relaying some of those stories to us in her column, “The Haute Find.”  “It’s about finding style on the street, in homes, and out-and-about. It’s an adventure looking for textures, fabrics, and how people add layers of details and interest to their wardrobe.” So, ramp it up, Baltimore. Maybe Elizabeth will be “telling” your story!