Two Week Roundup of Shop Your Closet Outfits

Hello my friends!  It has been way too long.  I finally carved out some time to get back to writing my blog.  I’ve been super busy with work, family and planning a super exciting series of events that are happening next week.  I’ll fill in on those later 😉

Last week was my first full week of the Beyond the Suit Shop Your Closet challenge.  I’ve been so good.  Despite all the temptation around me (I work in a major shopping area) I stayed focused and didn’t shop.  And, most importantly, I spent time in my closet getting reacquainted to all the clothes I own.  I dug deep and found some treasures!  Clothes I haven’t worn in well over a year and, I’m ashamed to admit this, but clothes with tags still on them.  But this challenge is breathing new life into my closet.  I now realized sometimes we can all get in a rut with our work attire.  Working in a corporate environment can stifle creativity so we wear the same clothes, the same way, all the time.  This is why I am really pushing myself to look at my clothes through a new lens and come up with new ways to wear them.  Here’s a tip:  When you just feel like you have no other way to wear a certain article of clothing, open up your Pinterest app and do a search for that piece along with the word “work”.  Instant inspiration!
So here some of my my looks for the past two week.  If you are doing this style challenge with me, don’t forget to tag your photos on social media with #BTSShopYourCloset.  I’m keeping an eye out for your creations.  
 
And check back in a few days for major news!
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Dress: Bloomingdales, Jacket: Saks Fifth Avenue, Shoes: French Connection, Necklace: Kenneth Jay Lane

2.2015

Top: Target, Skirt: Escada, Shoes: Isaac Mizrahi, Necklace: I can’t remember but i bought it on RueLaLa.

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Dress: H&M, Jacket & Necklace: Ann Taylor, Shoes: Enzo

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This skirt has been hanging in my closet, unworn, for over a year. A travesty! Sweater: Gap, Denim Shirt: Lauren Conrad, Skirt: Escada, Shoes: Isaac Mizrahi, Necklace: Kenneth Jay Lane

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Throwback to a Ted Talk I watched a few months ago where the speaker shared that before any big meeting or presentation, once should stand in a power pose to build their self confidence and pump themselves up. Dress: J. Crew, Jacket: Theory, Shoes: French Connection, Necklace: Van Cleef & Arpels

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White Shirt: H&M, Striped Shirt: Express, Pants: Banana Republic, Shoes: French Connection, Necklace: Forever21

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Shirt: Banana Republic, Skirt: Ann Taylor, Shoes: Isaac Mizrahi, Necklace H&M

Trend Report: How to Wear Gingham at the Office

Runway to Office; Gingham

 

Welcome to 2015!  After a two week hiatus, I am back!  I hope you had a wonderful holiday.  I spent quality time with my family, which is better than any present I received. Nothing is more Christmas-y than enjoying time with those that I love most.

I love the start of the new year.  Although it’s technically just another month, January brings with it a sense of renewal and excitement.  Everyone sounds hopeful, outlooks are bright and people feel like this is the time to step out of their comfort zone and try something new.  As I have been planning and preparing my content for 2015, I decided to build on the theme of trying new things for both you and me.  It’s a new year and you are probably thinking about updating your look.  What better way than to try out the latest trends.

Every year brings its own set of fashion trends, usually a combination of 2014 trends that have evolved and the hottest looks from designers’ spring/summer collections.  I love reading about “what’s hot” in all the magazines and thinking about how to incorporate them into my weekend look.  However, my reality, and probably yours as well, is that I spend most of my time in “work clothes” so for me it’s about making the trends work every day.  When you look at pictures from runway shows, the clothes and how they are put together seem so over the top, which is exactly what designers are going for.  But it’s actually not that hard to wear some of those trends at work.  It’s about using it as inspiration and bringing in one piece that speaks to the designer’s vision.

So, with that, I bring you the first installment of a series of Trend Reports that I will be featuring this month.  I have spent weeks researching the hottest trends for 2015.  I will share those with you and how you can wear them to work.  The end result will be a more style conscious, put-together you.  You will look fabulous and on point.  As with all personal style, it isn’t about wearing all the trends, but wearing those that speak to you.

This week it’s about gingham.  The print may seem familiar (you’re thinking picnic table cloth?!).  It’s an evolution of the plaid trend from 2014.  Gingham was a frequent pattern featured in a lot of the spring/summer collection runway shows.  Most models who came out in it were covered in gingham from head to toe.  Obviously, that is not going to work at the office.  However, when worn subtly, it definitely adds a pop to any work look.

Here are a three pieces of clothing that you can add to your closet and wear with your existing clothes to create a stylish gingham look.  I’ve purposely selected the black and white color palette because it’s the easiest to wear, especially if you are unsure of this look or it’s new to you.  Gingham comes in a variety of colors and as the spring clothes starting making their way into the stores, you will probably find it in an array of pastels.  As you get comfortable you can venture out and give these a try.

  • Look #1: Gingham dress.  You can add almost any color blazer to this dress.  The classic black pump completes the look.
  • Look #2:  Gingham pants.  You can dress these up for work or dress them down for a more relaxed day in the office.  For fun, I’ve added a patterned polka dot top to create a pattern on pattern look.
  • Look #3:  Gingham shirt.  A subtle way to incorporate this bold pattern.  Add to a classic suit for a sophisticated look.

I would love to see how you incorporate gingham into your work wardrobe.  Email me pictures and I’ll feature you on my sight.  And check back next week for another 2015 trend and how to make it office ready.

How to Look Chic at Your Company Holiday Party

‘Tis the season! Can’t believe Thanksgiving is next week and then we are officially in the holiday season. This is truly a magical time of year. All the festive decorations go up, you can hear the holiday bells on every corner, courtesy of your friendly Salvation Army bell-ringer (official title) and people are just nicer to each other (don’t forget to drop money in the red kettle as you walk by).

This is also the time of year for company sponsored holiday parties. I look forward to mine every year. I spend so much time with my colleagues that we are now like family, so the holiday party is like another family get-together. Oh…but not quite! It is still a company event, which means how you dress will have a reflection on how you are perceived at work. (You don’t want to be the person everyone’s talking about the next day at the office.) Add to that that the holiday party tends to be right after work and now you have the increased difficulty of balancing professional dress during the day and then immediately after moving into a social event. So, let me offer a few suggestions on how to transition from day to (holiday) night, without cramping your style or reputation.

Holiday Party Chic

 

  1. Do you wear suits the office? Incorporate one festive piece into your look. Consider adding a sparkly top under your jacket, or split up your suit and wear the jacket over a fun skirt. When it’s time for your holiday party, you can take off the suit jacket to reveal a sophisticated look.
  2.  Add some bling. Bold statement jewelry with big crystals are the easiest way to turn your day look into something more evening appropriate. And great accessories does not have to cost a fortune. These three pieces are super affordable.
  3.  Swap out your shoes or purse, or both! Embellished accessories are so whimsical and the perfect pop to a tailored black suit or sheath dress. Don’t think you will wear it again? Then consider using Rent The Runway. That is where you will find the playful clutch featured above.
  4.  And if you really feel like having a completely different look, consider changing your suit jacket or bottom with a sequenced one instead. These two from Zara are great for your holiday party and every other party after that.

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!

 

Midi skirt image 2

 

French Connection Shoe 1

 

French connection shoe 2

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