A sizzling, sexy summer in the city

Local boutique owners, fashion experts dish their tips to get your wardrobe in shape for the coming summer season

blankcanvass1Blank Canvas
1800 Camden Rd., Suite 105
980-833-1135
thebcbrand.com

Expert: Nicole
About: We brand ourselves to bring our customers unique, custom selections and to always set ourselves apart from other boutiques.

What are three must-have items for any person’s summer wardrobe?
Denim, Light Chambray Shirt, Shorts, Sneakers, Loafers

What are the hot color trends for this season? What is your favorite color?
We don’t really focus on a particular color. We encourage our customers to “BE THE COOL.” Blue is my fave color.

What’s the best kind of outfit for a casual, summer night out on the town?
A nice chambray shirt, denim and loafers.

What’s your take on Charlotte’s local fashion scene?
It’s very trendy. We try to remain timeless with our selections, so that our selections never go out of style.

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Boris + Natasha
1214 Thomas Ave.
704-375-0079
instagram.com/borisnnatasha/

Expert: Hope Nicholls
About: Boris + Natasha has been open in Plaza Midwood for over 16 years. I have been a boutique buyer since 1990. I design a line of sterling silver jewelry called Hope & Anchor. Our customer is anyone and everyone who likes fun and has a bit of personal style. Our customer buys $10 things and $200 things. Our customer does not need a logo or label to know what they like, what is cool for them.

What are three must-have items for any person’s summer wardrobe?
This summer everyone, male or female needs: great shorts, tank tops that are long enough to layer with, a statement necklace.

What are the hot color trends for this season? What is your favorite color?
My favorite colors for the season are true blue, canary yellow and any white. My favorite colors are grey and camo, year round.

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What’s the best kind of outfit for a casual, summer night out on the town?
Wide leg pants, a simple tee or tank and chunky jewelry and flat sandals.

What is your favorite fashion designer?
Thom Browne

What’s your take on Charlotte’s local fashion scene?
Charlotte’s fashion scene is very diverse. As always, artists and musicians and young people are driving the trends up to designers. People who have the least money are showing the most creativity in what they wear on a daily basis.

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lemond2The House of LeMond
510 E. 15th St.
704-712-9531
instagram.com/thehouseoflemond/

Expert: LeMond Crayton-Hart
About: There are several components of my business that keep me heavily involved in fashion in Charlotte and around the World. I have walked many runways around the country and world. I am a member of the Charlotte Fashion Guild and even operate a small local agency. I work with many designers as a creative director and a photographer.

What are three must-have items for any person’s summer wardrobe?
My three must haves would be a nice summer shoe, a nice straw or summer hat and arm candy (bracelets and cuffs)!

What are the hot color trends for this season? What is your favorite color?
I say that floral is the new black and I guess that my favorite color is Carolina Blue.

What’s the best kind of outfit for a casual, summer night out on the town?
I think that the best casual ensemble would be some tailored raw denim jeans, some awesome wing tips, a colored or white V-neck T-shirt, plenty of arm candy, a nice fedora and a custom tailored blazer with a lapel flower and vibrant pocket square. Of course, there must be jewelry and sunglasses.

What is your favorite fashion designer?
I don’t have a favorite designer. I like creating looks, and I can use anyone’s clothing. As a true stylist, you have to be able to. I think that the garment, its characteristics and details, make the piece as opposed to the label or name that is on it. I am inspired by many.

What’s your take on Charlotte’s local fashion scene?
I think that its growing by leaps and bounds, and provides ground floor opportunity for many that are interested or just getting started in the industry.

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lifesupport3

Life Support NC
3100 N. Davidson St.
980-949-8101
lifesupportnc.com

Expert: Raheem Smalls
About: Life Support NC is a street, skate, surf and contemporary men’s boutique located in the heart of the artsy NoDa community of Charlotte, North Carolina. The name “L.I.F.E.” is an acronym for Love, Influence, Fashion, and Education. We look to influence our customer’s by encouraging them to “be who you are” and love the diversity that is all around you. At Life Support NC, we strive to carry unique brands and styles that you can’t typically find in your local mall. We cater to a customer base that loves to express themselves through quality, style, originality and comfort. Our goal is to connect with our customers on many different levels and be their first line of education in the fashion world, therefore helping them to express their unique style.

What are three must-have items for any person’s summer wardrobe?
A nice heather V-neck T-shirt, a pair of ripped indigo jean shorts and a clean pair of white sneakers.

What are the hot color trends for this season? What is your favorite color?
White, red, blue and yellow are the hot colors for this spring and summer. My favorite color is blue.

What’s the best kind of outfit for a casual, summer night out on the town?
The best casual outfit for a summer night out on the town would be a nice lightweight V-neck T-shirt with a small logo or nice plain pastel color, a pair of slim-cut jean shorts with some tears in the front, a nice pair of rubber loafers with no socks and a smooth bucket hat to match the shoes.

What is your favorite fashion designer?
One of my favorite fashion designers would have to be Ralph Lauren. He has pieces for every season and every age that always trancends.

What’s your take on Charlotte’s local fashion scene?
Charlotte’s local fashion scene is evolving at a steady pace. I have been seeing more fashion designers and shows emerging over the past few years, along with local boutiques and large retail chains. They now have a Charlotte Fashion Week that clearly shows how the city is progressing and how the people of Charlotte are paying more attention and creating their own lane in the fashion industry.

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SILVERFLY
1111 Metropolitan Ave., Suite 150
980-819-7216
silverflybrands.com
Opening May 2015:
SILVERFLY Sport-Lifestyle Clothing for Men
1426 S Tryon St.
704-376-6612

Expert: Fidel Montoya
About: Voted Best Clothing by Charlotte Magazine three consecutive years.

What are three must-have items for any person’s summer wardrobe?
1. A pair of modern fit Hudson or Joe’s light weight jeans (light weight means less than 12 oz.). Dark wash denim is more versatile and minimal fading, whiskering & tears is better. Less is more. Forget the big pockets, large labels and bling.
2. T-Shirt, named after the T Shape of the body and sleeve. A tee shirt does not have a collar and cotton helps absorb moisture to keep you cool. Try Original Penguin slim fit tees — most guys carry weight on their front, there’s no reason to wear a boxy shirt. Our Alternative baseball tees and Henley’s were popular last summer and just arrived SILVERFLY in time for the season.
3. A cotton or linen light-weight sport coat is perfect for summer. Throw on a sport coat over the t-shirt and your ready for Fahrenheit. Take off the coat and your ready for The Bar at 316.

What are the hot color trends for this season? What is your favorite color?
Aquamarine is a trending color for fashion and I’m partial because I can pronounce it and I know generally what shade it is; who knows what the hell coquelicot is? Aquamarine works well with denim, khakis, and just about everything. For shoes and boots, brown is the new black.

What’s the best kind of outfit for a casual, summer night out on the town?
Parke & Ronen 2-inch, 4-inch or 6-inch shorts are perfect for the Carolina heat. Scotch & Soda button-ups are stylish and all your friends won’t be wearing the same thing. The stylish leather Hari Mari flip flops have arch support, are made responsibly and dress up the summer outfit. Hari Mari’s flops even fight cancer! For every pair purchased, $3 goes to help support children battling pediatric cancer.

What is your favorite fashion designer?
My favorite new line is OPNK — Original Perspective New Khaki. The line started in LA and has an innovative and contemporary approach to khaki. It’s a modern twist on a wardrobe staple. When customers come to SILVERFLY and try on shirts, pants or shorts by OPNK, they’re sold on style and comfort.

What’s your take on Charlotte’s local fashion scene?
The Charlotte fashion scene is embracing diversity and lifestyle. When I buy for SILVERFLY and SILVERFLY Sport, I look for the best in “lifestyle” and “athleisure” apparel. It’s great to have options for the gym, travel, beach and work. Charlotteans no longer have to travel to New York to define their style!

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whiterabbitWhite Rabbit
920 Central Ave.
704-377-4067
WrabbitNC on Instagram, Twitter and YouTube

Expert: Kode Brown
About: Our involvement in the fashion community has to do with under garments and fashionable mens swimwear. We have one of the largest collections of different brands and cuts on the southeast coast. Customers can expect friendly faces and knowledge of what fits them best from different types of underwear brands.

What are three must-have items for any person’s summer wardrobe?
Three must haves this summer are a cute pair of trunk-style swimsuit (Andrew Christian or Ruffskin), a pair of black or clear frame sunglasses and, of course, your Pride wear jewelry. A little rainbow can go a long way.

What are the hot color trends for this season? What is your favorite color?
From what I can tell, neon colors are still in. Mix it up with you basic colors like red, black or navy blue. Let your basic color be your primary color and the neon accent colors. That way there’s a balance between colors and you don’t stick out like a sore thumb.

What’s the best kind of outfit for a casual, summer night out on the town?
For your night on the town go for simple. A nice shirt and your tightest jeans. Then pair it up with your favorite, colorful underwear. Make sure you match your socks to pull it all together. Just because other people can’t see under your underclothes, doesn’t mean the guy you take home won’t.

What is your favorite fashion designer?
Junk Underjeans and Andrew Christian. They have a unique way of making you feel sexy and comfortable.

What’s your take on Charlotte’s local fashion scene?
When it comes to Charlotte’s fashion scene, people are stuck in their own heads. Take a risk and pair things that you would not usually pair. If you don’t like it, you can always change.

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