Want to stay cozy, but also look chic? Blair Williams and Myles Lett have you covered.
The senior manager of styling for Banana Republic and the associate stylist for stores and windows fashion looks for the brand's visual merchandising team, curated for BR customers. Whether taking a look from day to night, or staying in with friends, Blair and Myles want to inspire customers to get the most out of their purchases by having fun with fashion.
With versatility top of mind, the styling team showcases how different product pairings can create entirely new looks with the same pieces. For example, a women's suit jacket and pant may hang next to each other, but be paired with a ruffled blouse or distressed jean on a mannequin, for an entirely new outfit.
We sat down with Blair and Myles to talk holiday style tips, memorable bad outfits, and making the perfect wintry wreath.
What's your go-to holiday look?
Blair: I love being cozy and comfortable during the holidays, so chunky sweaters and turtlenecks are my favorite staples. I love layering and adding texture and dimension to a look by pairing a denim woven under a sweater or a striped tee. If I'm going to a dinner party, I usually dress up my jeans and sweaters with a statement earring and a leather bomber jacket.
Myles: I have a black pajama one-piece that is my absolute favorite. I wear it Thanksgiving and Christmas with a black beanie. It's my favorite because the only thing I have to pick out to wear is pants!
Do you have any go-to tips or tricks for translating a daytime outfit to a holiday dinner or party?
Blair: Definitely accessories! Jeans, flats and a cashmere sweater can be super dressed up by killer heels, a brooch and some leather or a long trench. People don't dress as traditionally as they used to — you don't have to wear a dress to a holiday party — so I'm all about being comfortable, but adding a little shine and luxury.
Myles: I usually wear one super polished item, like tuxedo pants. For daytime, I might pair it with a white button-up and cashmere sweater. To segue into night, I can throw on a tee-shirt and a beanie. Choose one polished high-end item that is also beautifully made and comfortable to wear and you're good to go.
How do you approach styling sweaters?
Blair: Banana has a lot of sweaters that are super versatile. The nice thing about sweaters — especially for holiday — is that there's a lot of layering that can go into them. This holiday, Banana has tons of sweaters in cashmere and luxurious fabrications that you can dress down with ripped jeans or pair with skirts, or even layer under a slip dress!
Myles: A crewneck merino sweater is so chic. It just looks so classic, on a man or a woman. The best part about sweaters is you can wear them under or on top. They can either be the focus of or an addition to any outfit. Versatility!
What's your favorite trend you're seeing this holiday?
Blair: I've been loving parkas with faux fur detailing for a little while now, but I'm really into the tension that you can create in a look by pairing a parka to a skirt or dress to make the look feel a little more modern and easy going.
Myles: Wide-leg pants! And more relaxed silhouettes. I love that the focus is no longer on skin-tight clothes. I think you can't be more chic than a basic tee and a wide-leg suit pant.
What do you love about the holidays?
Blair: I love that I don't have to do anything except stay inside and hang out with my family and my dog, Henri. I don't need to use my phone, I don't have my computer... I just hibernate.
My parents live right by the beach, so we get super wrapped up in our sweaters and scarves and walk to the beach with the dogs. I love that about Northern California — winters where you can still go to the beach, but it's really cold and windy with dramatic waves.
Myles: Family and friends. They are the most important to me. Having a time that is dedicated to spending time with your people and pets, who could ask for more? Also, who doesn't love to sleep in?
Do you have any memorable bad holiday outfits? (i.e. that ruffled monstrosity from when you were 4 years old?)
Blair: I don't necessarily have any specific outfits that come to mind, but every year when I was little, my dad made me pose for a picture with every gift I'd open. I'd get so excited and wake up while it was still dark out to open my gifts; so there's way too much documentation of me in my crazy pajamas with my hair poking out in every direction.
Myles: There is a photo of me in a Christmas sweater vest with gold buttons. In the photo I also have some sort of strange hair cut: short on top and a tiny ponytail in the back. I look so happy in it, though!
What's your favorite holiday tradition?
Blair: I love being crafty, so every year I help my mom design our table setting with flowers and candles, and we put together curated decorations with different themes. I'm not traditional when it comes to the holidays, so I love decorations to feel wintry and seasonal — not too Christmasy.
I also love Hot Toddies — they're my jam during the holidays.
Myles: The flowers! I love doing any form of flower arranging — from table centerpieces to door wreaths. Flowers have always made me so happy. I took a break from styling and was a florist for a while.
What's your gifting strategy? Do you have a go-to gift?
Blair: I love collecting gifts throughout the year when something reminds me of the person in my life. Nothing feels better than getting someone the perfect gift!
Myles: Homemade cards: Who doesn't love a heartfelt letter and drawing? Also, gift cards!
What's the best gift you've ever received?
Blair: When I was 10, I got my first puppy — which was the best gift ever.
Myles: My best friend Kate actually got me a pair of Patricia Field studded leather half-finger gloves — the same ones that Carrie Bradshaw wore on Sex and the City — and I was so happy. It was just the best. Katie knows me so well, but to get a gift that I had only dreamt of was over the top! It was also before I lived in NYC, so it represented something much bigger to me.
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