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January 29, 2019

Kona Sol at Target Swimwear Review

Target's latest owned brand is a new line of Women's swimwear called Kona Sol. I first saw a preview of Kona Sol on social media and took a closer look in store. I know it's hard to think about swimwear in the midst of winter, but spring and summer will be here before you know it. Now is the best time to shop for swimwear because there's more to choose from. I learned this the hard way when I tried to buy a swimsuit last July and could not find anything that I liked in store in my size.  

So what's Kona Sol about? Well there are plenty of styles, sizes (with select sizes from 14W  to 26W), and prints to choose from, with high-waisted bottoms, tankinis, and even swim skirts and shorts. Florals, mix-and-match pieces, polka dots, ruffles, and strappy details, it's all here! The wide variety of swimwear styles makes it possible to show off or cover up as much as you'd like. It seems that the designers are taking inclusivity and real women's bodies into account. I feel like Kona Sol has something for everyone. 

Pricing is true to Target and under $45. Sizing runs similar to the old Merona brand; it's more like Women's sizing than Juniors'. For example, I'm a small (or size 2/4) in Target's Who What Wear and A New Day brands, and a small in Kona Sol. 

Here's a peek at the refreshingly inclusive marketing images. 
kona sol target swimwear

kona sol target swimwear

Here is a look at my store's selection.

kona sol target swimwear

kona sol target swimwear

kona sol target swimwear

kona sol target swimwear

kona sol target swimwear

A wall display above makes it easy to mix and match solid separates.

I'm partial to florals and ruffles, and I'm looking forward to seeing more from Kona Sol as I visit different Target stores. I'm forever in search of black bikini bottoms with fun details! 

I bought this ruffled black bikini top in size small ($19.99) which has a removable strap. It also comes in white or coral. It's comfortable and fits well, but if I were swimming, I'd definitely leave the strap on for more support. I love the asymmetry and flirty ruffle, as it adds interest to solid or basic bikini bottoms, shorts, or swim shorts. I found it to run true to Target's Women's sizing.

kona sol ruffle bikini top in black

This post contains affiliate links and I may be compensated if purchases are made by clicking links.

Watch this space for more Kona Sol updates and photos.

Catch up with more Target Style on my Instagram stories @thekeytochic.

Shop Kona Sol best sellers:

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January 15, 2019

Spring Summer 2020 Fashion Trend Forecast

Now that 2019 is underway, you probably want to know what will be in style for spring summer 2020, right? You've come to the right place. New York-based trend experts Fashion Snoops have released their four fashion trends for spring summer 2020, and I'll be sharing colors, materials, and patterns for each theme. 

Are you seeking more fashion trend information? Follow my Insta stories @thekeytochic, my Facebook page, and my Pinterest trend boards, where you'll have access to emerging trends, personal style, outfit ideas, and exclusive shopping reports.

Before we get started on spring summer 2020, here are some quick links to more fashion trend forecasts:

See four men's spring summer 2019 trends, four women's trends for spring summer 2019, and four women's trends for fall 2019/winter 2020

See four men's fall 2019 winter fashion 2020 trends.

Read about four denim trends for 2019 on Fashion Trend Guide.

Explore five footwear trends for spring summer 2019

Spring Summer 2020

The four main themes for spring summer 2020 are: Genesis, Flash, Dose, and Ethos.

1. Genesis
In Genesis, the unearthing of ancient burial sites and fossilized discoveries have sparked a fascination with the origins of primitive homosapians and prehistoric life. Revealing the creation of the invention, notions of raw technology embrace the prototype phase of design. Designers like Axel Vervoordt reflect the elemental aesthetic of the trend as we merge ancient antiquities and modern minimalism. Advancements in technology give us clearer insights into the beginning of time, as we continue to reveal hidden secrets and treasures of the world. 

Genesis is derived from the macro trend Life 3.0.

Life 3.0 is not a science fiction conversation, it is the conversation of today. Artificial intelligence is the most important topic of our time. As living creatures, we are limited to our biological hardware. Technology is limitless, and this is the horizon for which we need to prepare. The impact of robotics in all forms will likely be the most important agent of change in the 21st century, transforming our economy, culture, politics, and the self. IoT (Internet of Things) has already demonstrated how smart homes, vehicles, and Artificial Intelligence (AI) companions improve our daily lives, anticipating our needs by learning our habits. 

Materials: Pulling reference from ancient elements and modern biotechnology, the most innovative of materials balance both past and present. Synthetics are recycled and naturals regenerated into new materials that tell a meaningful story about the people and places they hail from. Material origin is essential to this story, as the focus shifts towards naturally occurring elements that are sourced locally and ethically. 

Examples of materials for Genesis include: skeletal elements, exotic skins, wild feathers, fragmented sheers, and silken chiffon.

Browse examples of Genesis:

2. Flash
In Flash, the pulsating excitement of the 1980's influences a modern day look that's all about amplified color, sensual movement, and a fluid culture. The strong contrasts of the decade mean luxury and grit co-exist in a place that is as exciting as it is edgy. A renewed fascination with ballroom culture puts the focus on the many subcultures that exist on the fringe in order to have a place to belong. A fascination with the quirky charm of '80s Sci-Fi influences lustrous surfaces and pastel neons. Finally, a slew of today's designers show how the toughness of the streets can inspire a surprising level of softness and femininity. 

Flash is derived from the macro trend Selfishly Aware.

Selfishly Aware looks at the cause and reaction of a growing portion of our lives being lived on social media. Being constantly connected leads to being constantly informed, which can be a positive thing when pertaining to increased awareness of global issues and using social platforms for good. Our visually driven culture has led us to the "Instagrammable design movement" where products and spaces are created with instant photo appeal to be shared on social media. We are living in a time when there are so many versions of reality, real life is labeled "RR" for real reality. 

Materials: Drawing inspiration from the vibrant and pulsating era of the 1980s, dynamic materials and plush surfaces work to support the body everywhere from the dance floor to the boardroom. With an underlying party-ready spirit, showy metallics and glittered surfaces add a playful twist to everyday looks. We celebrate contrast as high glamour collides with hard edged styles for an explosion of aesthetics.

Key materials are chain-link mesh, plush velvet, satin romance, and liquid metal.  

Shop the Flash trend:

3. Dose
In Dose, we look to the pioneers of discovery and philosophical idealisms from early trailblazers who explored conversations between science and culture through psychedelic research journeys. We take inspiration from modern mood research and its correlation to sensory experiences. How physical and mental stability can be improved through virtual adventures, augmented reality (AR) introductions and the growing influence of cyber networks that enhance consciousness and blur the lines of reality. Art that aims to break down boundaries gains traction, inviting the mind towards a new type of enlightenment. 

Dose comes from the macro trend Wow.

It takes a lot to grab our attention today and even more to keep it. The physical world around us is competing with the digital world in our phones and computers. The entertainment, retail, art and marketing industries are seeing positive results from building immersive brand experiences, such as virtual and hybrid events, exhibitions, trade shows, and pop ups. The next level of wow factor is using cutting edge technology tools to deliver multi-sensory experiences that appeal to all five senses, creating loyalty and building emotional relationships with consumers. Customization is a key for the immersive physical retail experience, whether it's personalizing a product or the store tailoring the shopping experience to you through in-person service, augmented, and virtual reality (VR). 

Materials: A blend between psychedelic science and virtual reality inspires inspires a new generation of highly technical materials, engineered to provide the ultimate sensory experience. Synthetics are driving forces as the artificial becomes the new natural, innovations in 3D printing and dry dyeing render traditional production methods obsolete, and emerging technologies propel us further into a new future we want to create. 

Key materials are blurred sheers, utility canvas, smoothed fleece, and digital rib knit.

Explore the Dose trend:

4. Ethos
In Ethos, we remind ourselves of the joys of being human. We embrace our emotions and find joy in the little moments in life, appreciating that the unexpected and unplanned often end up being the best. There's a continuing appreciation for craft and a new sense of minimalism that is arising through local design, one that actually speaks to a purpose. "JOMO" (Joy of Missing Out) is added to our vocabulary as we seek off-the-grid travel, slow living practices, and body positive thinking. Sustainability is taking on new forms with plant-based fabrics, and and increase in farm-to-table ingredients is found in beauty and health. 

Ethos comes from the macro trend Pursuit of Happiness.

The global community is redefining what success means by challenging the traditional routes taken to get there. The flexibility of freelance culture and the idea of access over ownership contribute to the romance of a nomadic life. We are seeking rest and deeper life meaning during our vacations, thus, off-the-grid travel, retreats, and shared experiences are in demand. There's a dawning of consciousness emerging in the workforce. A renewed focus on work/life balance is becoming increasingly important. A key element to happiness are the experiences that are beneficial to our overall mental and physical health. 

Materials: Local craft is seen as elevated design, giving purpose and meaning to every raw material used. With emphasis shifting towards slow craftwork, we cherish traditional weaving and crochet knitting techniques to inspire a new generation of process-driven materials. Sustainability takes on new forms with regenerated organics and plant based fibers that showcase how imperfectly beautiful nature can be. 

Key materials are textured linen, matte silk, crisp cotton, natural straw, and crafted crochet.

See examples of Ethos:

This blog post is adapted from Fashion Snoops, is protected by international copyright laws, and may not be republished without permission. Students, please feel free to use this information for school projects as long as it's not reproduced or republished online and you properly cite both Fashion Snoops and The Key To Chic as sources.

This post contains affiliate links and I may be compensated if purchases are made by clicking links.

Keep up with my shopping and fashion adventures on social media @thekeytochic.

Shop and explore more trends:

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November 8, 2018

Moschino for H&M Alternatives

H&M's annual designer collaborations are known to spark shopping frenzies, website crashes, and sold out items. With its logo-infused graphics, flashy accessories, and bright colors, the collection stayed true to Jeremy Scott's fun-filled aesthetic at Moschino.

If you missed out on some of your Moschino for H&M must-haves, don't worry. You can still get the fun, cartoon-inspired, colorful Moschino look. Here's what to buy as alternatives to the Moschino for H&M collection

This post will be updated in the coming days to share more alternatives to the most popular items from the collection. Catch up with me on Twitter @thekeytochic for more shopping and fashion inspiration.

This post contains affiliate links and I may be compensated if purchases are made by clicking links.

Shop more alternatives:

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October 15, 2018

POPSUGAR at Kohl's Review

I've been meaning to stop by Kohl's to check out the new POPSUGAR at Kohl's collection which launched last month so I could publish a review. My first impressions after seeing glimpses of the line on social media were mild interest and collaboration fatigue at best, hence, the delay. When it comes to these launches, it seems that Kohl's doesn't put forth the amount of effort and financial investment required to generate buzz and excitement compared to their competitors. Nevertheless, I went to the store with an open mind and a coupon code.

In the store, I was met with a few mediocre pieces and a few surprise hits. If I had to describe the POPSUGAR at Kohl's collection in three words, it would be: preppy, casual, and colorful. The color palette strongly consists of black, red, various shades of blue, and soft pink. Along with the usual rayon and polyester-filled racks were a few redeeming cotton tops and denim/chambray pieces. The uninspired and vague motto for the collection is "the clothes we live in, play in and love in." It doesn't exactly speak to me or let me know what the collection really encapsulates. Aside from the lackluster marketing, I did appreciate the visuals, which feature POPSUGAR employees wearing the collection. See more from the POPSUGAR team on the Kohl's website. It's refreshing to see non-professional models and I found them to be relatable. 

Pricing note: in true Kohl's mark up to mark down form, the collection was advertised in the store as 25% off. That, combined with my 15% or 20% discount code, would make things more wallet friendly.  

February 18, 2019 update - See more by POPSUGAR:

February 11, 2019 update - Shop the latest from POPSUGAR:

Here's a look at what my store carried.

popsugar at kohl's review

My store recently redecorated and the POPSUGAR collection was front and center where the ELLE collection used to be. The "everything is better with a pop of sugar" signage was eye-catching and clever.

popsugar at kohl's review

From the looks of the selection, not many things were sold out, and there were plenty of the larger sizes available. Sizing is 0-24, but my store mainly carried sizes 2-14. The items I browsed looked like they ran slightly big, except for the crop tops and fitted tees. 

popsugar at kohl's review

Shop striped pieces:

In terms of prints and design details, expect lots of stripes, with some florals, heart graphics, and sporty piping. I found all four pieces below to be really cute and tempting, but ended up leaving the store empty-handed. The striped sweater ($32.99) says "love ya self" and would look chic with dark denim. The blue and white striped blouse with puffy shoulders ($29.99) has a button-back design and runs big. It looked more expensive and reminded me of Rebecca Taylor. I almost bought the balloon-sleeve sweatshirt ($32.99) on the lower right but I just didn't love the raw hem.  

popsugar at kohl's review outfits

Shop my favorite tops:

The collection reminded me a lot of the ELLE collection, especially the knitwear. 

popsugar at kohl's review outfits

The embroidered heart details (shop the pink sweater for $36.99 or ruffle sleeve top for $24.99) were charming and cute for layering. They reminded me of the LC Lauren Conrad collection. I liked the side striped ankle pants ($36.99), but something about the thin double red stripe gave me cheap pants vibes. I know that Zara excels when it comes to sporty trousers like this. 

Shop the looks:

This post contains affiliate links and I may be compensated if purchases are made by clicking links.

Keep up with my shopping adventures and reports on social media @thekeytochic.

Shop the collection:

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September 19, 2018

Prologue at Target Review

I first discovered Prologue, Target's new clothing line for Women, two weeks before the official launch date of September 14. On a quiet Friday evening Target run, I stumbled upon a few professional, minimal pieces and was intrigued once I spotted the Prologue label. Having heard nothing about Prologue, I quickly browsed the offerings and ended up buying this ivory camisole. A quick Google search later that weekend uncovered a trademark application but nothing else. Fast forward to a week later, when Target made the announcement and shared the lookbook. During another visit to the same Target store a few days later, all the Prologue pieces were pulled from the floor. It seems like my Target store has a knack for putting some collections out too early. 

Given this mishap, I was eager to see the line again on the launch day. Described as the "essential edit of modern style", Prologue is comprised of workwear basics such as button front blouses, blazers, pencil skirts, and slim trousers. I think of them as basics with a twist. A puffy sleeve here, a cargo pocket there, these are chic wardrobe items that can transition from a formal office to the weekend with a change of shoes and accessories. Target's claim that they use elevated materials is true. The pieces have more heft than other brands at Target and appear more expensive than they are. With prices under $50 and sizes ranging from 0-16 (with some pieces up to 30W online), Prologue aims to be both versatile and wallet friendly. 

February 9, 2019 update - Shop my winter picks under $80:

Shop my favorites below.

Sizing tips: I found sizing to run similar to Merona and A New Day. With workwear pieces such as blazers, trousers, and button front blouses, tailoring matters, so try things on when in doubt. Many pieces have wrinkle resistant fabrications and stretch for added comfort and convenience.

Quality tips: the fabrics are not flimsy and look on par with pricier brands such as Ann Taylor or Club Monaco. Case in point, this faux leather dress for $39.99 or this coated denim trench for $49.99. 

Color palette: don't expect bold, bright prints or colors. These are minimal pieces done in a palette of neutrals such as black, grey, or ivory and punctuated with the occasional navy, blush, or lilac.

These are my favorite looks from the lookbook.

Prologue Target lookbook

Here's a peek at the collection in three different stores. Some of the stores are undergoing renovations and updates including brighter lighting, more upscale visual merchandising displays, improved signage, and new carpet.

Prologue Target clothing review

Prologue Target review

I picked up these cropped cargo trousers ($29.99). They have an easy fit through the leg (with 5% spandex), are well tailored, and run true to size. 

Prologue Target cargo pants

Balloon sleeves and snap front closures give the classic blouse ($24.99) a modern update, and the faux leather dress ($39.99) on the left is selling out quickly. 

Prologue Target clothing review

This sherpa vest ($44.99) makes quite the style statement when layered over polished basics.

Prologue Target sherpa vest

Below, I'm wearing the sherpa vest in XS, and while I like the concept, the length was too long and the shape was too boxy for my taste. It has snap front closures and two front pockets that are stitched closed. It does shed a little, leaving behind fibers on your clothing. I'm wearing it layered over the open cardigan ($34.99) in XS. It has 5% wool so it's slightly scratchy, but not enough to bother me. It also comes in grey and on the plus side, it didn't require much ironing and it kept me warm for a breezy night at the beach. I'd size down on the cardigan because it runs big in the shoulder and arm area.

Prologue Target sherpa vest cardigan

This asymmetrical wrap skirt looks much more expensive than its $24.99 price tag.

Prologue Target wrap cargo skirt

The mock neck sweater below ($24.99) has an elastic waist, giving it an athletic vibe and casual feel. It's made of a medium weight polyester rayon blend, and makes a perfect layering piece for winter.

Prologue Target mock neck pullover sweater

I later bought these jogger trousers ($29.99), which run slightly big. I'm wearing them below on the left (size small) with this V-neck camisole ($17.99) from the collection and Gucci Aces. On the right I'm wearing the cropped cargo trousers ($29.99) in size 4. They require little ironing, and they are ultra comfortable, while not being flimsy like some trousers at this price point.

Prologue Target review trousers and outfits

Get the looks:

While not as colorful and full of prints as the Who What Wear collection, the new Prologue collection looks chic, and I will be keeping my eye on the more trend-centric pieces.

This post contains affiliate links and I may be compensated if purchases are made by clicking links.

January 30, 2019 update - Love Target Style? See my Kona Sol at Target swimwear review.

For more shopping ideas and inspiration, find me on social media @thekeytochic.

Shop Prologue:

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