Worker V

Worker V: 1.8 + Tips for Wearing Black in Spring

Some of you might have seen my tweet/Instagram shot of the new Diane von Furstenburg (DVF) belt I ordered from Shopbop. But just in case you missed this lovely thing, here it is:

DVF Julie belt

Belt girl that I am (they’re a V style staple), I have been craving the tassel belt look ever since I saw the gilded belts in Gucci’s spring 2011 collection. So when the DVF Julie belt arrived at my door, I couldn’t wait to work it into my wardrobe.

Just so happens, the same day I wore Julie to work in the ensemble below, I happened upon Angeline’s post, Black in spring (and big changes ahead), in which she shared her all-black look, and wrote:

Despite the nice spring weather, I’ve been increasingly drawn to black…Are you drawn to certain colors in certain seasons?

Angeline, suffice it to say that there is never a time of year I am not drawn to black. As I’ve written before, it’s my default color, and the basis of my career-girl wardrobe. Angeline did an outstanding job working her black LBD in spring. I have some tips for getting black right in warmer months, but first, what I wore to work last week:

Shirt: Limited •  Belt: Diane von Furstenburg • Pants: White House | Black Market •  Heels: BCBG

These pants are several years old—but I adore them because of the slits at the ankle. Satin lining in the slit gives them a tuxedo-ish feel (they’re probably intended as evening wear but I’m not relegating them to life in the dark)—and they accentuate your kicks like nobody’s business! Of course, that day my kicks were my sturdiest work pumps, but slip on a sexy sandal with these pants and the effect is no less potent than if you were wearing a skirt and showing a lot more leg.

Tips for Wearing Black in Spring

  1. Pay attention to the fabric. It goes without saying, but I’ll say it…wool knits, velvet, and tweeds should stay in the back of your closet during warmer months. Think black cotton, linen, eyelet, silk.
  2. Break up black with pops of bright color. Something I did not do above, but the easiest way to keep black light. Add a neon or red belt. A jangle of candy-colored bangles. Or maybe a gem-colored pump.
  3. Add warm weather accessories. Now’s the time to carry that cloth, straw, or raffia bag (hint: the latter two don’t pair with business attire). Switch your warm scarves for breezy summer ones. Put your floppy felt hat away for the season and replace it with a straw or summery fabric one.
  4. Wear open-toed shoes. Whether you can do this in your office is another matter. But even with a lightweight dress or suit, follow Angeline’s move and wear a peep-toe pump. On weekends wear a strappy sandal or a fun wedge with a little black shift or romper.
  5. Break out your metallics! Absolutely nothing is more luxe than black paired with gold. So pile on your gold necklaces and slip a pair of gleaming gold platform sandals on your feet. Or go for a bold earring or statement ring. These days, metallic handbags in gold, silver, bronze, and pewter come in so many shapes and sizes, it’s likely you’ll find one that can be carried in any season. They are lovely against an all-black look.
  6. Bring color in through your nails and lipstick. I think coral and bright pink are the ultimate summer colors; if you’re not one to wear a bold lip, give it a try. It really does lift your spirits! And there is no cheaper, easier way to accessorize than with nail polish. This spring, last year’s pastel blues and greens are hot, plus neon nails and yellow.


Later this week…

What do I get asked about more than anything else? It’s not blogging tips or where I found a particular item.

The two questions I am asked repeatedly are: What lipstick are you wearing? What polish is that?
So later this week I’ll share my favorite nail polish and lipstick colors and brands in one post.


Previous post

Links à la Mode: IFB Weekly Roundup, May 12

Next post

Lipstick: Faves, Tips, and Tricks


  1. May 16, 2011 at 12:41 am — Reply

    Though we’re going in to winter I’ll be using these tips in spring/summer too. The slit in the trousers is an unexpected but fab extra.

  2. May 16, 2011 at 12:58 am — Reply

    that belt is beyond amazing and looks fabulous on you. it really accentuates that tiny little waist of yours!!!

    i love your tips for wearing black in spring. they’re spot on!

    Kristy Eléna – Full Time Fabulous
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  3. May 16, 2011 at 1:18 am — Reply

    I feel so guilty these days when I wear and all-black outfit, like I should be trying a bit harder. But it’s true, there’s nothing quite as comforting as black. It always looks polished and elegant and I don’t have to wonder if the different pieces go together.

    Love those black pants! I’ve found a lot of great basics at White House/Black Market.


  4. May 16, 2011 at 1:29 am — Reply

    Looking fierce, mama! I actually never wear black on black, which is amazing considering the amount of black I do have in my wardrobe (I’m a New Yorker at heart, you know). I think it’s something that’s been subconsciously instilled in me through my mom, who’s always admonished pairing like colors unless they matched exactly. I guess it makes sense, she grew up with the women in her family wearing suits and the like. It’s funny how that sort of thing rubs off on you. But now I think a lot of people would consider that matchy-matchy. I might have to throw caution to the wind one of these days and try it.

    And I’m loving the DVF belt! I don’t remember if I mentioned it on Twitter, so there it is again.

  5. May 16, 2011 at 2:42 am — Reply

    Black is my default colour too. And I don’t feel guilty about it. One bit. Last summer I worked it back with nude shoes and accessories. LOVE that belt.

  6. May 16, 2011 at 3:13 am — Reply

    love the trousers with slit!

  7. May 16, 2011 at 3:30 am — Reply

    I never wear black. In Spain if you wear black people ask you if you are in mourning.
    I am in awe of people who, like you, can pull a black outfit so easily.
    I am all colour.
    Much love and besos from Berlin.
    I would very much love to know your professional opinion on the blogger affair
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  8. May 16, 2011 at 5:30 am — Reply

    Thank you for the tips, Vahni!
    I actually really need tips on incorporating black into my wardrobe in general – I have so many colourful items that I always end up more bohemian and less chic. :)
    I love the slit of the trousers and the pumps are just gorgeous! It all works superb with the new belt!

  9. May 16, 2011 at 6:35 am — Reply

    WOW.. this DVF belt scream luxury Vahni.
    Nobody will look great as you do in this photo.. I mean NOBODY.
    Such a beautiful accessorie
    lee x
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  10. May 16, 2011 at 9:19 am — Reply

    OMG VAHNI!! you have the best accessories ever. I want that belt, I want those shoes. wow.


    Le Kiss Kiss- Click Here!!
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  11. May 16, 2011 at 9:46 am — Reply

    Love the belt, V! And great tips, because I’m proned to wear black all year long, and it really does depend on the fabric. I also incorporate a lot of white with black, and that makes for a very crisp look, especially with stripes.

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  12. May 16, 2011 at 9:56 am — Reply

    And actually THE “Expert ès Sexy / Glam forecasts who is slumbering on me” can’t help BUT see this dark predilecton as your “GLAMazon-esque” unconscious’ (all land) expression Dear V !!!
    ps: This (as strongly as nonchalantly worn) belt does not fail to electrify your subtly uncluttered silhouette, as a whip sensually flirting around your waist (“shy smile”) . . .
    à Bientôt, Antoine
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  13. May 16, 2011 at 12:05 pm — Reply

    I love how you can rock all black girl! That belt is gorgeous and of course your shoes are always on point! I definitely agree with you in paying attention to fabric. Besides the fact you want to still keep the spirt of Spring, you also don’t want to melt in the warm sun! :)
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  14. May 16, 2011 at 12:07 pm — Reply

    Love it! What a great spring vibe in an elegant color. Thanks for the shout-out!!
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  15. May 16, 2011 at 12:12 pm — Reply

    That belt is so fabulous! I think black is just one of those colors you can wear all year. It’s simple, chic and can be paired with so many colors and fun accessories.

    Looking forward to your make-up post!

  16. May 16, 2011 at 12:25 pm — Reply

    The belt if beyond amaze-balls!! I have no words. Belts are so perfect and I think they always make an outfit more special.

    I’m looking forward to seeing your lipstick and nail polish faves!!!

    p.s. I’m hosting a fabulous giveaway! :)

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  17. May 16, 2011 at 12:31 pm — Reply

    Great tip about the bright lipstick/nails! I love a black on black outfit, but the makeup is really bright. Who says the pop of color has to be on outfit??
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  18. May 16, 2011 at 1:36 pm — Reply

    Slit in the back of pants is so good!!! I might just cut some of my pants! They DO show of the kicks like nobody’s business! Tassel everything for me please :)

  19. May 16, 2011 at 1:45 pm — Reply

    Black is my favorite color, regardless of season! I do the black on black look a lot, but usually leave it to shoes and accessories to add pops of color.

    I’ve mentioned this before, but I am terrible at working belts into my wardrobe. I’ve never been able to figure out what types of belts look best for my figure and/or where exactly to place them. I need belt help. But that is a topic for another day.

    I love this look – those pants are so fun, for work or play, and the belt is amazing. Also – I love the little “next post’ teaser. What a great idea. I am excited to read it already!
    Beautifully Invisible’s latest post: LINK LOVE with a TWIST- May 16- 2011My Profile

  20. May 16, 2011 at 2:29 pm — Reply

    I LOVED that belt when you shared on Twitter/Instagram, but I ADORE it even more after seeing you wear it! I can see why black is your default color; it looks great against your skin. That slit in those pants is SO right, perfect for showing a gorgeous shoe!

    As a nail polish addict and someone who always love your bold colored lip, I can’t wait until your post later this week!
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  21. May 16, 2011 at 2:30 pm — Reply

    thank you for your nice comment on my blog:-) I am loving your tips on black and you look fabulous wearing it. Love your shoes and those slitrs in your pants show them off perfectly. The belt is very stylish as well.
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  22. May 16, 2011 at 3:12 pm — Reply

    Great tips, V!! You look gorg, as usual. I love black. In fact, most of my wardrobe is black. I broke my black up today by pairing a little floral dress with black tights. Works fabulously :)

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  23. May 16, 2011 at 3:14 pm — Reply

    Vahni this belt is pure amazingness!! I am crazy about anything with tassels….fab heels too! Wishing you a fabulous Monday…xo

  24. May 16, 2011 at 4:00 pm — Reply

    @angelineevans knows how to work black in spring. You? Read: Worker V: 1.8 + Tips for Wearing Black in Spring

  25. May 16, 2011 at 5:13 pm — Reply

    I used to wear black all the time, before starting this blog adventure. I still like to wear an all black from time to time. Will try the color combo as you suggested, I’m thinking white. Looking forward to the next post, I never asked but I was curious though.

  26. May 16, 2011 at 5:49 pm — Reply

    Check out these great tips from V! Worker V: 1.8 + Tips for Wearing Black in Spring via @gritandglamour

  27. May 16, 2011 at 6:02 pm — Reply

    Fabulous tips for wearing black in warmer weather Vahni! I still wear black in summer too. Love this all black outfit and especially like the split ankle detail of the trousers. And drooling over those shoes and belt!
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  28. May 16, 2011 at 6:30 pm — Reply

    Check out these great tips from V! Worker V: 1.8 + Tips for Wearing Black in Spring via @gritandglamour

  29. May 16, 2011 at 9:37 pm — Reply

    OMG!! I am seriously in love with every detail of this outfit!! Serious!! The slits in those pants are brilliant and I want that belt!! :)

    I really like your tips. Especially the first one about the fabrics. There’s a reason that was #1. Another great post, lady!!
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  30. May 17, 2011 at 12:08 am — Reply

    That belt is amazing – I love the tassels!

    Black is a staple in my wardrobe for all seasons. You actually reminded me of a pair of black linen pants that I left behind. Linen feels so fresh, but it often reads outdated if not in the right cut or color. Black will always be modern!
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  31. May 17, 2011 at 12:30 am — Reply

    FRESH OUT: Worker V: 1.8 + Tips for Wearing Black in Spring

  32. May 17, 2011 at 4:58 am — Reply

    These are great tips for wearing black – I love to wear black in the summer, think it looks great with a tan :)
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  33. May 17, 2011 at 6:43 am — Reply

    I love the belt, the fringe, the black leather.

    Can’t wait to see your lipstick/polish post, especially after I asked you what orange hue was your fav! :)
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  34. May 17, 2011 at 8:21 am — Reply

    Hi Vahni, I can’t wait to see your picks for lipsticks and nail colors. I am a big nail polish fan. I know you veer toward hot pinks (me too) but I think with your lovely long dark hair you knock it out of the park when you go with red!

  35. May 17, 2011 at 8:40 am — Reply

    I loooove those pants! I can definite see you sashaying around in a pair of strappy sandals with those babies. I always forget about White House, Black Market. I have to remember to go in there next time I go shopping. The Belt = FABULOUS! You do such a great job of high-low dressing, V! You’ve got your standard mall brands, and you totally kicked them all the way with a a kick-ass designer belt. The end result is 100% luxe & chic. Love it!
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  36. May 17, 2011 at 9:13 am — Reply

    I wear so much black! I’m trying really hard to change that though thanks for the tips!

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  37. May 17, 2011 at 10:42 am — Reply

    Er it sort of draws the eye right to your … middle of the legs area. I find that a bit risque.
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  38. May 17, 2011 at 12:30 pm — Reply

    Thanks Kirstin! RT @kirstinfoley: Check out V's awesome tips!! Worker V: 1.8 + Tips for Wearing Black in Spring

  39. Lang
    May 17, 2011 at 3:02 pm — Reply

    All black in summer rocks, but only the fiercest girls can pull it off. And you, girl, are fierce.

  40. May 17, 2011 at 5:00 pm — Reply

    Love those pants! They look great on you!
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  41. May 17, 2011 at 7:33 pm — Reply

    YOU are like Johnny Cash for us fashion bloggers- classic in black. That belt is off the hook (is there a pun in there? no?) and the outfit is just pure savvy style.

    You do have the best lipcolor and nail polish. Looking forward to that post. xo. -Bella Q
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  42. May 17, 2011 at 10:59 pm — Reply

    You look radiant as always… That belt is beautiful V! I love interesting belts like this. Good tips to use, and I see why black is your default colour. I feel it’s a great one that everyone can simply wear. I agree get some colour into your wardrobe & nails. I actually never owned nail varnish until this year believe it or not, but I decided to acquire at least 10 bottles by December; thought i’d give the manicurist a rest and DIY it! look like we both heart minty colours. -xxoo
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  43. May 18, 2011 at 9:24 am — Reply

    gorgeous V!!!! I love your outfit…..even though it is black but you are as dazzling as ever!!!! thankful for your tips babe!!!


  44. May 18, 2011 at 9:43 am — Reply

    I’m always drawn to the wrong colours the wrong time of the year, and black is a shade that I want to wear all the time. It always makes us go “black, really? in summer?” but why not? There’s a fantastic black maxi dress I’ve my eye on in H&M, and it’s perfect for summer :)
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  45. May 18, 2011 at 10:58 am — Reply

    Love this belt. Yes I have a problem : ) I wear black all seasons. This is a helpful guide. I like the metallic tip the best. One can do small things to make sure the black is season appropriate. I also liked the tip about the cloth texture. That is definitely key!
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  46. May 18, 2011 at 1:00 pm — Reply

    Love the pants….very chic.
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  47. May 18, 2011 at 3:43 pm — Reply

    I cannot get over the awesomeness of your DvF belt. Then again, why should I? *squeals*
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  48. May 18, 2011 at 3:43 pm — Reply

    Loving the belt it is very Gucci with the tassels. I also noticed you like BCBG I’ve seen a few of their items pop up in the list of your outfit posts.

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    • May 20, 2011 at 12:07 pm — Reply

      Thanks, Arash. I DO love BCBG…shop there often.

  49. May 18, 2011 at 5:27 pm — Reply

    Black and gold is one of my favorite combos too! Thanks for inspiring me to rock noir in the warm weather months. I tend to stick to white and brights!

  50. May 18, 2011 at 9:39 pm — Reply

    You already know I LOVE the belt. Now I have to rock it with some color and jewels. Can’t be looking like a copy cat now :-) I’m a New Yorker black is staple year round. You rocked it V! xo Mish
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  51. May 19, 2011 at 3:17 am — Reply

    Cannot wait for your beauty product post! I don’t write them, but love reading them. LOVE!

    Great tips here, V. I’ve never tried a coral lip, but now I’m thinking about it. A mix of red and fuschia with a hint of brown is usually my color of choice…

    Amazing belt, you look hot!!!
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    • May 20, 2011 at 12:07 pm — Reply

      Thanks, Steph. Coral would look AMAZE with your coloring! Do it!

  52. May 19, 2011 at 5:16 am — Reply

    Just stunning Vahni. I love your look, and I love that it is always YOU wearing the clothes, not the other way around. That to me is a true fashionista. The tassels are amazing, such a glam touch. The pants too, omg, very subtly sexy. I love that you don`t make them wait to come out for special occasions only.

    I look forward to reading about your beautystuff, personally I like my lips coral or nude lately. Goes nicely with the freakles :)

    I hope you are enjoying your Thursday my lovely. Hugs for you and your man! xx
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  53. May 19, 2011 at 9:12 am — Reply

    V has me wanting tassels on everything! <3 her look Worker V: 1.8 + Tips for Wearing Black in Spring via @gritandglamour

  54. May 20, 2011 at 3:16 am — Reply

    My dear Vahni, after this carry on with Blogger I want to have some control over my blog, but I am not sure if the best option for me is to go to WordPress or to own my domain in Blogger. What would you advice me to do??’
    Much love.
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    • May 20, 2011 at 12:05 pm — Reply

      Sacramento, even if you go to your own domain in blogger, you’re still relying on the Blogger platform, so any issues with the server or comments will still exist. I strongly recommend that you move to

      You know there are lots of resources on my Build a Better Blog page!


  55. May 20, 2011 at 11:52 am — Reply

    Hey loves, thanks for all your comments! Good to know I’m not the only “black as default color” girl around!

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