"I love the over-the-knee boot trend. The problem: I don't know how to wear it without looking like a hooker! I'm in my mid-30s — short shorts and miniskirts are just too daring for me, but that's what they're styled with most often. Any alternatives?"
Over-the-knee boots present a styling challenge. We're used to seeing them with minis and shorts, but I find they can look great with asymmetrical shapes because you have the compromise of a longer/shorter effect. They can also work with longer hemlines, providing the skirt has a slit that reveals the boots' higher length when you walk or sit. Otherwise, why bother? I also find that a flat boot presents more options because it can function very much like a legging. In fact, that should be your guide: Whenever you would opt for leggings, ask yourself whether you could substitute over-the-knee boots. I'm quite certain that your answer will be yes!
"My question is regarding the proper way to care for cashmere sweaters. I've heard that it is better to wash them in cold water with a gentle cleanser such as Woolite and allow them to air-dry. But is dry cleaning better?"
Many cashmere sweaters have a tag reading "dry clean only." I have found that this is not the case. Hand washing cashmere not only prolongs its life in your wardrobe, it also makes it softer. Wash using baby shampoo, Woolite, or Tide Total Care and rinse thoroughly. Now here's the key: Use a salad spinner — yes! — to remove as much of the water as possible. Otherwise, the sweater can take days to dry because you should not squeeze or twist it. Once spun, lay the sweater flat on a towel to fully dry. Finally, never place sweaters of any kind on hangers because they will stretch. Instead, fold them in thirds lengthwise.
SWEATERS $79 each, Joe Fresh; joefresh.com for stores.