#MassWomen Styling Event – The Value of a LinkedIn Picture

Hello all!  What a Thursday!  Yesterday I attended the MA Conference for Women both as an attendee but also (and most importantly)to style women for their professional head shots. It’s all about that first impression, so I wanted to make sure that all the ladies looked picture perfect and ready to conquer their career aspirations.   I got up at 5:30am, arrived at the convention center at 7am and was on my feet (really 4 inch heels) all day.  I met so many amazing women – so impressed with the positive and uplifting energy. It was such a pleasure for me to converse with them and learn about their careers and passions.

If you have a LinkedIn profile (which you should!) make sure you have a photo uploaded as well.  If you don’t, you are doing yourself a disservice.  Your photo can make your resume stand out from all the others that may look similar.  It’s also a window into who you are.  And it’s for that reason that you want to make sure you look your very best in the picture.  That’s why I jumped at the opportunity to do this – I work in corporate America and, more importantly, my role in human resources gives me a unique insight into what hiring managers are saying about candidates.  So I know what looks good in the working world.  A great picture that captures you at your best can make a difference.

A special shout out to the photographer I worked with, Nicole Connolly, owner of Photo Fabulous You.  She is a true professional and has an eye for bringing out the best in her clients.

 

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Midi Skirt Trend – Office Ready

Midi Skirt Image 1

So a couple of things happened last weekend – the weather dipped below 50 degrees in New York City, November officially started and we set our clocks back an hour. This is when I lose all hope of mild weather and accept the fact that I will soon be wearing 10 layers of clothes under my coat through April, if I’m lucky. I am a New Yorker, born and raised, but the cold winters never seem to get easier. And with this realization comes the mourning period. I am no longer in the mood for bright colors and I start to gravitate towards dark colors.

This week I wore several dark outfits but I wanted to share my favorite look of the week with you.  I decided to try the midi skirt trend that is all the rage right now. I have always loved how these skirts look on models in magazines but when I would try them on, I always felt so matronly, almost like a nun from my elementary school days. But then I found this one at H&M and thought, “Hell, why not!” I paired it with another find from the same shopping trip to H&M – white tuxedo blouse. And the shoes are from French Connection. I personally like adding this particular shoe because it has some edge to it, contradictory to a very feminine and classic look with the long, flowy skirt. That’s what style is all about – making great outfits out of things you wouldn’t necessarily think work well together. I love this outfit because it’s office appropriate but also “after work drinks” ready. Super versatile.

I often wear clothes from H&M and that’s because I love the store! H&M has come a long way from selling the basics. Their clothes are now always on trend, they have teamed up with great designers in the past and currently (Alexander Wang collection came out on November 6th) and it’s affordable. I believe in spending money on the things that will last. Love brands like Theory and Elie Tahari for suits and other staples that I will keep for years, but for clothes that are representative of the current trends, I make my money stretch and shop more affordable brands. You can be 25 or 55 and find great clothes at H&M.

I hope you stay warm this upcoming winter. If you are in a cold location like me, join me for a little morning prayer to mother nature, asking her for mercy. If you are in a location with milder weather, I’m jealous!

 

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Celebrate Halloween Without Tarnishing Your Personal Brand

In honor of Halloween, this week I’ll be dishing style advice for work appropriate Halloween costumes.  Just because it’s the one holiday of the year where anything goes, doesn’t mean you can be that literal at the office.  Let’s face it, work doesn’t stop, our clients will call us and while the atmosphere may be a little bit more laid back, you could get pulled into a meeting with a Vice President AT ANY MOMENT.  You do not want to be in that meeting thinking “I should not have worn this costume today.”  So it’s important your Halloween festivities are on-point.  Here are a few tips for celebrating while still being office ready.

  • Halloween is not the time to forget about work attire etiquette.  Thinking of dressing up like a sexy nurse or a sultry vampire?  Think again.  You still want to be taken seriously so make sure your costume doesn’t give too much away, or everything.  You wouldn’t dress provocatively on any other day, so don’t start today.

If it says "sexy" on the packaging, don't wear it to the office.

  •  Make sure you are client ready, literally.  Even though it’s a fun holiday, our clients need us, and when they do, they mean business.  Don’t get caught looking like an episode from “Walking Dead”.

 

 

 

  • Leave offensive costumes at home.  Better yet, leave them at the store.  It goes without staying, racist or offensive costumes are a no-no, no matter what the occasion.  It’s about having fun, not being a jerk.

Rude costumes need not show up.

 

  • The best costume ideas are the ones that incorporate your professional attire.  If you have a casual Friday policy, you can wear jeans with a flannel top, add a hat and boots and you are a cowgirl.  Hat off with a quick shoe change and you are ready for that last minute meeting.  Have to dress more “corporate”?  How about a black sheath, a string of pearls, hair pulled back and now you are channeling Audrey Hepburn.

 

Can't go wrong with a classic.

 

Hope these tips get you into the Halloween spirit while keeping your reputation intact.  Have fun and stay safe!  Happy Halloween!

Get The Most Out Of Your Work Wardrobe

Hey there!  Ready for a quick tip?  Want to get the most of your business suits?  Pull them apart!  By treating the blazers and bottoms as separate pieces and adding stand alone pieces you already own, you can create an endless amount of new looks.

Here’s an outfit I wore to work this week.  I used the blazer from a suit, with pants I bought this summer and created this professional look.  Navy and beige is a pretty classic color combination so you can never go wrong with this pairing.

Mix-n-match suit pieces to create new looks.  Blazer:  Banana Republic, Shirt: Banana Republic, Pants:  H&M, Shoes: BCBG Necklace: Ann Taylor Loft

Mix-n-match suit pieces to create new looks. Blazer: Banana Republic, Shirt: Banana Republic, Pants: H&M, Shoes: BCBG Necklace: Ann Taylor Loft

And if you really want to make your suits, and your entire wardrobe for that matter, work for you, check out the board below.  I created 10 looks out of a suit, a cardigan set, a classic white button down shirt, a striped skirt and a sheath dress.  Now go play in your closet and see how many new outfits you can create by mixing up your pieces.  Better yet, send me your new looks by tagging me on Instagram & Twitter.  Can’t wait to see what you create!

Get the Most Of Your Work Wardrobe

 

Another Celebrity Fashion Line to Check Out – Great Work Pieces

Let me start by saying that I am not one of those people that buys things because it’s celebrity endorsed.  These last few posts have been purely coincidental.

 

sandy alex roadtrip

 

This past weekend, while my friend and I were driving down back to NYC from a girls’ weekend in Cape May, NJ (Yes, I have a life aside from my day job at tech giant EMC and night jobs of blogging & mother/wife/house manager AKA CEO of the Brunetti Family ) we stopped at a mall in Freehold, New Jersey.  As we were perusing the mall, my friend spotted a 50% off all items sign at New York & Company so we had to go in.  Can’t pass up a good sale!  I discovered that Eva Mendes had collaborated with the store to create a line of clothes.  The clothes are really colorful and quite stylish – several pieces that would be perfect for the office.  A couple of things caught my eye but I eventually left the store with just one (no reflection on the clothes – this was the last store we hit and I was exhausted so I didn’t want to try much on.)  Below is the Isabella Polka Dot Bow Blouse that I picked up.  It’s a great blouse that can be paired with so many things – think an endless array of solid colored bottoms and even large prints, possibly plaid.  I am wearing it with a red skirt and black pumps.  I went light on the accessories because that bow is pretty massive but I did add statement earrings that really stand out, although I forgot to take a picture of them.  Check out your nearest New York & Company to find the collection or shop online.

I should mention that the shirt was not on sale, but almost everything else in the store was.  Shirt retails for $49.95, which is still a good price for such a versatile piece.

 

Shirt: New York & Company, Skirt: Escada, Shoes: Saks Fifth Avenue