Thursday, July 2, 2009

Pumps & Pleats: Stand out in 'Swank-y' couture

Story and photos by Michèle De Meglio

One of the worst things that could happen to a fashionista is buying a pricey cocktail dress and then spotting the same garment on another gal at a party.

Oh, the horror.

Fortunately, there’s a shop in Sheepshead Bay that’s helping local ladies avoid this nightmare. When Swank boutique fills its inventory with special occasion dresses and ball gowns, only three of the same design ever make it onto the racks. In some cases, just two.

And oh, what dresses they are!

There’s a floor-length silver column with ruching that would fit perfectly at a Hollywood Oscar party.

Or, the short floral number with an intricately beaded neckline.

Don’t forget the chiffon maxi dresses with tribal prints.

Once you select your favorite red carpet gown, of course you’ll need accessories. Fortunately, the shop’s owners are happy to help style shoppers.

Swank’s shiny gold and black clutches would be the perfect combos with any of the red-hot dresses.

The jewelry counter has plenty of Juicy Couture’s popular gold-over-brass designs. Gals who love big, bold pieces would surely drop a few bucks for the oversized heart and toggle chain or chunky bracelet adorned with a Juicy crown.

If big gemstones are your thing, there’s a respectable collection of fine jewelry featuring a massive amethyst ring and a three-stone ring with perfect pink sapphires.

There’s even stylish shoes to complement the most dressy outfit. For a sleek look, try the satin Fornarina pumps with sweet peep-toe cutouts.

For a more dangerous look, there’s patent red sling-backs sure to grab attention. Yowzah!

Swank isn’t all about party wear. The shop also dresses women for the gym, casual weekends and work.

A $285 Diane Von Furstenberg white blouse is a delicate yet modern take on the classic peasant top.

There’s also the real version of a Forever 21 knockoff. Flavio Castellani’s $375 floral blouse boasts the sweetest pink and yellow print, a matching satin belt and delicate ruffles.

Looking for something more casual? There’s always the tried and true $200 Juicy Couture sweats in hot pink, electric blue and neon orange.

Many of the pieces in Swank can be a bit pricey but the shop’s owners say they’ve brought in more moderately-priced garments, like $60 jeans.

There are definitely deals to be found at Swank. In fact, a black Armani jersey dress for $155 is styled with a $49 necklace featuring genuine gemstones. Score!

Swank boutique is located at 1720 Sheepshead Bay Road. For hours, call 718-934-0095.

Michèle De Meglio is a native Brooklynite addicted to all things chic. Check out Pumps & Pleats each week for more adventures as she scours the borough for fab duds and accessories.


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