This winter, Chicago temperatures have been all over the place. One recent weekend got down into the negatives — a bone chilling, skin burning, utterly disrespectful kind of dangerous cold. Then there was substantial snow. But as I write this today, temperatures are edging towards 40 degrees, the sun is shining and the last of the snow and ice looks to be melting away (much to my delight)!

One thing about this kind of winter — I never really know what to wear. The key to navigating an unpredictable winter like this? LAYERS. You gotta dress in layers because the temperatures typically drop throughout the day. Heck, even from street to street the chill in the air can feel totally different. That wind on Michigan Ave? It’ll cut you! Brrrrrrr!

Being a transplant to these climates has led to many fashion struggles. When I look back on some of the things I wore when I was first learning to layer, I cringe. But finally, after living in Chicago for 6 years and some change, I think I’ve figured it out. Of course there are days when it’s so cold here that cute goes out the window and you just bundle ALL the way up if you have to. I’ve learned that I like to go bold during the winter months. I like to make a statement against the bleak landscape. To me, winter is a time for layers involving vibrant color, statement patterns, and luxurious textures that stand out in a sea of white. For example.

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For my PANDORA Jewelry holiday lookbook, I rocked a lot of Simply Be. I already showed you the jewelry. Now let’s get into these clothes, shall we?



I absolutely love Simply Be for their quality. This purple Joanna Hope shawl collar coat is heavy and comfortable and so cool. I love this coat. I really do.

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The waterfall PU jacket I’m wearing underneath is the kind of staple layering piece I’m going to wear forever. Love it! It’s made of a heavy quality material for staying power.

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The underlayer is this PU front top, which is a great upgraded basic to rock with jeans or shorts or a cute skirt in the summer.



Outfit number two is also all about texture. A little less bright, but no less luxe or bold. Check it out:

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I feel so glamorous and playful in this double layered fur cape by Lovedrobe – super cute, great price!

I’m rocking it over this kimono jacket, which is going to get a LOT more wear on its own in the spring. Such a classic piece!




I’ve been getting SO much wear out of this black diamond sweater, it’s so soft and fluffy and luxurious! Unfortunately it’s sold out, but the designer is Koko and there are several similar options here. I want more, the fabric is so plush!

I rocked it all with Riders by Lee skinny jeansPlus bellas, don’t sleep on Lee — the venerable denim brand has great fit and durable, comfortable jeans and pants — click here to find out for yourself!



I’ve been stomping all over Chicago in these zip cowboy boots. Why do I love them? Because they’re classic, comfortable, sturdy, and I know I’m going to wear them ALL the time. I’ve gotten some great quality boots from Simply Be and these are among them.

I also got a lot of questions about the makeup, all done by the amazing Andrea C. Samuels. The lip colors are Nightmoth lip pencil by MAC Cosmetics, and liquid lipstick in Unicorn Blood by Jeffree Star Cosmetics.

Here’s the gorgeous beauty blogger @afrobella wearing the Winter 2015 ?Star? Collection created by @TheOfficialPandora Photo | @chuckstr Makeup | @andreasamuelsmakeup On her lips is #nightmoth by @MACcosmetics and #unicornblood by @jeffreestarcosmetics Head to to view the rest of the #PandoraJewelry lookbook. #jewelry #silver #gold #afrobella #chicago #chicagoartist #purple #queen #artofyou #allofmypurplelife #maccosmetics #inglot #inglotusa #andreasamuels #naturalhair #curls #Pandora #andreasamuelsmakeup #PandoraStyle

A photo posted by Andrea C. Samuels (@andreasamuelsmakeup) on

Thanks to Simply Be and to Pandora for the opportunity to stunt! All photos by the always awesome Chuck Olu-Alabi. Hope you liked my lookbook, bellas. Click here to shop!


LaNeshe says:
February 6, 2016, 5:01 pm
All of this slay! You look beautiful.
gigi says:
February 20, 2016, 8:12 pm
yassssssss, Sis!!!
Ornella Jenny says:
February 20, 2016, 9:28 pm
Hi , Afrobella my name is Jenny ,I am a big fan of your work and you might not know it ..I am writng because I saw The fashion show you are participating for natural hair , I am really interested and I wish you allow me to participate . I am a natural girl , completely natural and an ex-model . That will be so mean to me. I hope seeing your response soon. Thank you ...
Tiffany says:
February 26, 2016, 1:29 pm
You look great! The hair awesome. What are you using? How are you keeping it protected from that brutal Chicago weather?
Chelsea Davis says:
March 20, 2016, 3:32 pm
You look amazing!!