One of actress Ruth Buzzi’s props when she played the character of a crusty old maid, in the television show “Laugh In” ws a shapeless, dowdy, cardigan sweater. On her, the sweater was truly funny. But sweaters can also be sexy and glamorous. Anyone who has ever seen Lana Turner or Marilyn Monroe, or Pamela Anderson, knows the allure of a great sweater. Even script writer Ed Wood craved his wife’s angora versions! Hollywood has always loved “sweater girls.”
Which brings me to Belldini. It’s a knitwear brand that makes chic, classy, sexy and elegant sweater pieces, from tops, cardigans, and sweaters for women, to a new collection of dresses. Today is the first day of March, and if you know the old saying: “March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb” you know that it’s still chilly outside. A Belldini sweater or sweater dress could be just the “chill chaser” you need to supplement your wardrobe before it’s time for the cottons and pastels.
Belldini sweaters are pure Hollywood glamour, featuring glitter, cut-outs, sparkle, rhinestones, sexy cuts, and more.
I just learned about Belldini, but celebrities have known about Belldini for years. In fact, in November, in Nashville, Belldini caught the eyes of a number of Country stars at the 45th Annual CMA Awards, including American Idol alumni Lauren Alaina and Carrie Underwood, who wore a gold Belldini cardigan during her final rehearsal for the CMAs. Gary LeVox from Rascal Flatts gotsome pieces for his wife, while superstar Lionel Richie chose some vests for daughter, Nicole (and she definitely knows how to make a fashion statements).
You don’t have to be a celebrity to look like a star in a Belldini piece, however. I tried a few pieces from the latest Belldini collection that made me look and feel, instantly glamorous. Since it is Winter, I chose this Lurex fly-away cardigan with pointelle detailing in acrylic and lurex (Style 115014). The sweater looks seriously expensive, but it’s just $88.00. It doesn’t just hang there, it fits your curves, and gracefully falls like flower petals. You can wear this long cardigan as a fancy jacket. Try it belted, or pinned with a sensational, statement pin. I like wearing it open and loose over slim jeans. There are just so many ways to style it! The jacket comes in the colors you see in the photos, above,. Mine, in midnight blue, has silvery sparkles. It comes in small medium large and extra large. Sizes run true to size.
Sweater dresses are so popular, that I couldn’t resist trying this Zig Zag stitch dresss for $84.00 (Style #115095). If a sweater dress is cheaply cut, you can see it the minute you put it on your body. But this figure flattering surplice dress with contrast ribbed waistband & cuffs slides over your body in the right places, making the dress “come alive” instead of sitting there, awkwardly. It is available in small, medium large, and extra large. The Viscose/ Nylon/ Lurex blend is lightweight, but not chintzy. The black, white and grey version has silver threads to add some sparkle. The pink version looks equally lovely. This is one of those dresses that, with a push-up bra, looks undeniably sexy, but you could wear it to the office without raising too many eyebrows if you keep the decollete, down.
Belldini has fashions for daytime, but they seem to excel at evening wear: sweater knit tops with fur, leather, and embellished layering pieces, and tops with bold prints, sequins, beaded, ribbed and rhinestone zippers. Belldini is also the sole originator of the rhinestone zip cardigan. There are plenty of companies that produce sweaters, tops and jackets, but Los Angeles-based Belldini just seems to have a knack for flattering women of all sizes. While you might not be into too much glitz or glitter during the day, grommets on sleeves, and other glamorous details make even an ordinary sweater, special. The quality is in the pieces. Try one, and you instantly feel more like a star.
For those who feel that social responsibility is a must from the companies they buy from, you’ll be glad to know that Belldini conducts inspections at each of their factories to ensure the standards and practices are compliant with international labor laws and practices. The company tries to be “green” as well, with procedures that leave a minimal impact on the environment. Belldini employs individuals throughout the United States and abroad, encourages personal and professional development. The company also offers health care benefits.
For all these reasons, there’s something for everyone. It’s simply lovely knitwear. Once you’ve gotten your first Belldini, you’ll be hooked. One won’t be enough! Luckily, wth items from $80.00 to $300.00, Belldini is within the realm of reason for even those on a budget. Belldini is sold in Dillard’s and Nordstrom’s nationwide and online at www.belldini.com . You’ll be glad you did!