Trend Report: Fall Must-Haves

I am super excited about fall trends including booties, luxe leisure, animal prints and neutrals which you can see in action here. But there’s more! Let’s break down fall 2016 a little further and go deeper with saddlebags, retro ‘70s, colorplay, and lady-like trends.

Margo and CamHands down the “must-have” bag of the season is our saddlebag, Cam. Less is more with this snappy bag that can be worn as a long shoulder bag and as a crossbody giving you the hands-freedom you love. You’ll find this texture rich bag in a smooth haircalf in two solid tones. Cam’s Golden Oak is an of-the-moment play on ’70’s mustard hues — don’t be afraid of mustard! It’s a seasonless neutral that goes with just about any color in your closet — navies, grays, blacks and chocolates. We also interpreted Cam in a deeper, true fall color — a beautiful burgundy red shade that takes you straight through the fall season. Cam is the perfect style for the woman on the go who aspires to be on trend!

Retro ’70s vibes mark the style of the Margo bootie. It’s all about the “go-go” boot this season. These boots take us back to the days of Twiggy and Nancy Sinatra singing, “These boots are made for walking…” They are both fun and super chic. Again, step outside of your comfort zone and embrace the mid-calf height of these boots. They are perfect to pair with your go-to rolled up skinny jeans or with a chic mid length dress or pencil skirt for a more polished look

download-1Want to add a fun pop of color and style to any outfit? The oversized Brindle clutch is playful in its two tone detail. There is a lot of patchwork out in the market this season (nod to ’70s style once again) and this two-tone clutch is a great way to hit on that trend without going overboard. Find it in pumpkin (some might call it burnt orange 😉 ) with a burgundy back panel, and I just love the contrast of these two tones. Practically speaking it boasts D-rings for the option to wear as a short shoulder bag or crossbody. And the long tassel zipper pull serves as the exclamation point of this bag.

Feeling lady-like? Tap into that feminine strength with Daphne or Fiona. Daphne is a versatile crossbody ideal as a go-to bag that powers through your day whether it’s climbing the corporate ladder or networking in the community. Daphne comes in Jaguar Haircalf and Sand Snake and the gold details really complement both these textiles. Fiona offers a bit more structure, but with the same versatility, in a lady-like bag. She can take you from work to lunch with friends with ease. fall1She has a detachable/adjustable strap that offers extreme versatility in how you carry this gorgeous bag. For a more refined look you can remove the detachable strap and carry it as a top handle bag under the nook of your elbow for a professional lunch and then head straight to the airport, wearing your optional, hands-free strap which makes it easy to make that connecting flight! You will love the striking python and boa textures and colors in this one. She’s a keeper!

Fall 2016 offers something for everyone. There’s so much to play with, and we’re always striving to provide lots of high fashion AND practical details to make your everyday a little brighter.

XOXO, Elaine

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E Talks Season’s Interior Design Trends with Laura U

Elaine & Laura catch up at Beckrew Wine House.


You probably know this by now, but I am deeply interested in interior design. I think this is the case with a lot of fashion designers, that a love of good design and creativity extends into other areas in life. It’s the home for me but it could also be art, cooking or gardening for others.

I am thrilled to feature Houston designer Laura Umansky on the blog today. I first heard about Laura U at an Elaine Turner photo shoot several years ago. We were lucky enough to host it at the most stunning home in River Oaks and Laura had designed the interiors. The theme of the shoot that year was retro Hollywood glamour and Marilyn Monroe was our muse. You can only imagine the interiors — they were absolutely gorgeous, and I loved meeting Laura and her adorable husband Michael.

So I was thrilled to reconnect with Laura recently over wine. It was so fun learning how much we actually have in common — we are both entrepreneurs who work with our husbands!  And we are moms and UT alums — go horns! I loved chatting with  her and getting the scoop on what’s new in interior design this season. It’s always fun to see any crossover in trends in fashion and interior design.

So enjoy my Q & A with Laura! Then head on over to Laura’s blog where you’ll find our lively discussion about fall fashion, and be sure to check out her stunning portfolio!  XOXO, Elaine

Laura designed the interiors of a beautiful River Oaks home which was featured in an ET photoshoot several years ago.

ET: What trends are you seeing this fall in interior design?

  • Modern farm style – warm, rustic, clean and contemporary combined.
  • Deep colors – like crimson – paired with softer hues like clay pink or blush.
  • Green, green and more green! From emerald to sage.
  • Metallics, especially rose gold and bright silver.
  • Large-scale antique floral and botanical prints.

ET: What are some things readers can do for a quick fall refresh in the home? 

LU: My current obsession – table linens – is an easy seasonal change with a huge impact. For fall, I switched up my summery green, botanical, Oscar de la Renta table cloth for my Ember table cloth from my capsule collection with Ellisha Alexina. Instant Autumn vibes!

As an aspiring gardener, I believe plants make a home. Bring in fall colors via an indoor container garden. My favorites right now are Flowering Maple (while it mostly blooms through summer, it will also bloom right through winter) and Oxalis (aka Purple Shamrock), which has gorgeous, deep purple leaves. Aubergine is definitely a fall color!

ET: Any thoughts or tips on expressing one’s personal style in the home?

LU: While your large-scale upholstery and case goods set the tone for your home, your personality is displayed in the details. I am a collector of vintage vernacular photography, and it is a big element in my own dining room. Yes, the dining table rocks, but the photography is what makes me the happiest! Invest in what makes you happy, and display it in a thoughtful way. Music is always playing in my home because that is how I grew up: around my mother’s record player. I just brought a record player into my home so I can share my love of music (and vinyl!) with my daughters, and the super cool lucite trunk that I keep my records in is just a bonus!

Laura’s dining room with the photography she loves.

ET: Tell us about your background and how you got into interior design?

LU: Art and design have always intrigued me. I studied art as an undergraduate, but I never felt like an artist — at least not a painter or a sculptor. However, I love to create, and I have always loved to linger in beautiful spaces, even from very young age. I drafted house plans and furniture layouts from the time I could hold a crayon! After graduation from UT, I was lucky enough to work with a fantastic designer. We focused on commercial interiors – mainly car dealerships – and this taught me to manage large-scale projects and demanding timelines. I then went to graduate school where I received my Masters in Architecture and landed a dream job even before graduation.

I worked for a firm designing amazing vacation homes in Cabo San Lucas – who wouldn’t want to do that? Here, I honed my project management and logistical skills while exploring the best of the best lines of furnishings and high design. The hardest thing I have done is to leave that firm and venture out on my own, but I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit, and the timing was right.

I opened my firm alongside my small, namesake, furniture shop: Laura U Interior Design and Laura U Collection. I had my shop for six years, but my heart was increasingly with my interior design projects. Because I felt that I couldn’t give my shop enough attention, I retired from retail in 2012 to focus solely on creating classically current, residential interiors and building a team of uber-talented interior design professionals. We all believe in leaving every space we touch better, stronger and more beautiful.

Laura’s living room comes alive with pops of color.

ET: What’s your personal style — in the home, fashion-wise, etc.

LU: My style is super quiet, fashion-wise. I look at piles of fabric and tile all day, every day, and pull it together into a meaningful interior. To do that, I can’t think too much about my wardrobe, which is mainly monochromatic, but texturally rich. A go-to outfit will typically include a cream, silk blouse by Equipment Femme with simple black Joe’s denim, and my favorite cork shoes by my favorite shoe designer, ahem…

At home, my style is clean and collected and a little bit like my wardrobe: simple upholstered pieces mixed with textural fabrics and floorcoverings, and my art is my jewelry!

ET: How do you juggle the chaos that can come with running a business and motherhood?

LU: Two words: family and team. My husband works with me, and we have a united front and a strong partnership, both at work and at home. We are both entrepreneurs working on multiple businesses, which we are incredibly passionate about. It helps that we share this drive to create. We are each other’s biggest cheerleaders and constant sounding board. My twin girls (Liv and Ryan) keep me totally grounded, and I couldn’t be more in love. It is totally chaotic with two 4-year-olds at home, but I welcome that chaos any day!

I am also lucky to have the best design and operations team in the world! While I pride myself on the fabulous interiors we design, I am most proud of the whole team here at Laura U. There is absolutely no way I could be as creative or as fulfilled in my designs without this group of amazing professionals.


ET: What advice would you give to other young entrepreneurs hoping to make their mark on their industry?

LU: Work hard, constantly learn something new, be nice, and be (tastefully) loud. When you are just starting out, be open to everything. Take every project that happens to cross your desk, and learn everything you can. Pound the pavement, get involved in your industry and community and be a diligent project manager. It’s not just about the design; it’s about managing the project for your client so they can focus solely on the design. Forgive yourself for the mistakes you make along the way (there will be a lot). Be prepared, do your research, but don’t make up answers. Always remember that your main strengths are your knowledge and your resources: know where to find answers, and go get them.

Most importantly, get along with your team, your vendors, trade pros, builders and subs, but never be a push over, and market, market, market. No magazine will come to you at the beginning. Get the word out about how amazing you are so no one misses you. Easy enough!

Connect with Laura:
IG: @laurauinteriordesign
FB: @laurauinteriordesign
T: @laurauinc

P.S. If you enjoyed this post, I’d be thrilled if you’d share it. And don’t forget to follow and subscribe to Join the Collective!