Monday, February 28, 2011

Recap | My year of not shopping

Holy moly...this is it, folks. Today is the last day in my year of not shopping. When I embarked on this shopping diet, I had no idea what to expect. I've written about it on the Great American Apparel Diet website as well as on Classy Career Girl, where I detailed the lessons I've learned from this experience.

362 days of no clothes shopping, 3 days of weakness

H&M jacket, Loft suit, Ann Taylor top

Purchased or swapped for 18 items of clothing, 17 pieces of jewelry, 6 belts, 4 pairs of shoes, 4 pairs of tights, 3 scarves, 1 purse



In hindsight, I think I did better than expected (I totally thought I had bought more shoes, but I couldn't find any others).  I didn't count gifts into my recap, but I did get some nice wearable ones, too.  My closet still isn't as pared down as I'd like it to be, but it's getting there. And I'm appreciating my pieces more, too. For the longest time I was a basic basic basic girl. I had crew-neck short-sleeve tees in 6-7 colors, crew-neck long-sleeve tees in 5 colors, 5-6 of the same basic tank, 5 pairs of flip-flops, and the same pair of jeans in 3 different washes. As I've become more creative with my outfits and pairings, I'm drawn less and less to my simple staples and more to special pieces and finishing accessories. Somewhere in the past I had apparently decided that I needed an excuse to dress up (beyond jeans, tees, and flip-flops) and look put together--this diet (and this blog) has showed me that I don't.


Thinking about starting your own shopping diet? Here are some tips.
  • Set parameters. Are you abstaining from clothes, shoes, accessories, or all of the above?
  • Set a timeline. That way you'll know when you've succeeded. Start small if you have to. My first shopping diet was for a quarter in college (10 weeks), and then I did 6 months in 2009. Baby steps.
  • Unsubscribe to retailer and sale emails or delete them immediately. DO. NOT. OPEN.
  • Ask for help and support from your friends and shopping buddies. It helps.
  • Swap and accept. Whether it's permanently (through a swap event), borrowing clothes from a friend, or scouring your mom's closet for hand-me-downs, there are several ways to work new pieces into your outfit without spending a dime. Even if they're not your style at first glance, try it out. You can always give it back or pass it on.
If you have any other questions about my diet (or shopping dieting in general), leave them in the comments and I'll do a follow-up post with the answers. In the meantime, I'm planning my first excursion out--Macy's over lunch. I can't promise I'll buy anything, but I can't promise I won't.

Have you ever embarked on a shopping diet? For how long? What did you learn?

Friday, February 25, 2011

Executive Summary | Links for your weekend | 02.25.11

A shell that was still attached at Lincoln Park in Seattle. The whole weekend ended up being gorgeously sunny.

How was your short week? It flew by for me, especially after our long weekend vacay up to Seattle. I'm a serious sucker for a good skyline and walkable neighborhoods.

Since I've been back it's been full speed ahead, at work and at home. I've been making little to-do lists on post-its of things I think of during the day that should get done when I get home. It's nice to just go down the list (I work in duties like "relax" and "watch DVRed shows" so it's not really all that stressful). It's always surprising how little time menial tasks take. For example, "hang up clothes" always feels so daunting, but it never takes more than 5 minutes (even for a week's worth of clothes). Tonight, however, I left my list at work. It's a miracle I remembered to pick up taco shells on the way home for dinner tonight (K had the fixins all ready--would have been a disaster).

Anyhoo, on to the reads!

Style and fashion
Career and office
After hours
How do you get stuff done on nights and weekends at home? Do you have a system?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Menswear inspired

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casuasl old navy trousers the limited top vest belt swapped necklaces
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casuasl old navy trousers the limited top vest belt swapped necklaces
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casuasl old navy trousers the limited top vest belt swapped necklaces
The Limited top - 2009 - $20 (similar) / Knit vest - 2011 - hand me down (similar) / Old Navy trousers - 2006 - $6 (similar) / Brown belt - 2010 - swapped (similar) / Blake Scott red pumps via Off Broadway - 2010 - $40 (similar) / Forever 21 leaf necklace - 2010 - $5 (similar) / Grouse and Badger typewriter key ring - 2010 - $5 (available)

I know, I know. It's these pants again. I actually wore it this week, though (Tuesday's outfit was from earlier this month). I liked this outfit so much that I ignored the six other backlogged outfits that are still waiting to see the light of screen. 

It was one of those days--I had two meetings in the morning, including one I was in charge of. It was completely internal, so suiting up was not necessary.  I recently saw some belted vest looks over at J's Everyday Fashion, and remembered I had this vest lying around...it was handed down to me last time I hung out w/ my girlfriends. It's not quite the same style as J's, but I liked the result anyway. In hindsight, I'd like to add my brown velvet blazer next time I try this--would be like a mismatched three-piece suit! But oh well. This was fun, too.

What worked
The vest and belt made the outfit look almost suit-like without being too matchy.

What didn't
The pants look really long in the pics, but really they just slip down a lot. They have this really weird thin waistband with no belt loops and so they're always slipping down. While I love love love these pants to death, having to adjust them often is a bit annoying.

How do you make menswear work for a woman?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

No Sneakers at the Office [Book Tour and Giveaway]

There is no shortage of business books out there, but where does a young professional start? Here's a good option: No Sneakers at the Office. Written by businessman and filmmaker Adam Scholl, this book is written specifically for college seniors, recent grads, and 20-something professionals seeking to make it in the corporate world. Topics include everything from appearance to office politics. Released last fall, the book has already been touted by fellow business pros Penelope Trunk, Shama Kabani, and Robert Tuchman. Read an excerpt from his chapter on career growth and mentorship here.

Scholl was kind enough to answer some questions I posed recently about his experience and his book. I also have a copy of the book to give away to one lucky reader! Keep reading for details.

The New Professional: Please briefly tell us what your book is about.
Adam Scholl: No Sneakers at the Office is a step-by-step guide for college seniors, fresh-outs, and Gen Y professionals seeking to enter, survive and thrive in corporate America. The book covers corporate communication, time management, professional appearance, business travel, workplace etiquette, office politics, and career growth.

Tell us about your own career and how it influenced your book. 
My professional life began when I enlisted in the Florida Army National Guard in 1993. The military provided an excellent foundation for a successful profession later on because I was exposed to an outstanding group of leaders during my service. I continued to progress in my career by obtaining a BS in Management Information Systems from Florida State University in August of 2000 at which time I took a position at Publix Super Markets, Inc. as a programmer. Starting my business career at Publix provided me the opportunity to mature as a professional--it was an organization filled with innovative leaders. During my six year tenure at Publix, I obtained an MBA and then produced and directed the successful documentary, Agent Orange: The Last Battle.

After advancing within Publix and accomplishing many of my personal goals, I enrolled at University of Detroit Mercy School of Law. Over the next three years at law school, I worked at an established financial institution as a business system analyst. This experience convinced me to enter the business community upon graduating law school in 2009 at which time I accepted an engaging opportunity at Winn-Dixie Super Markets.

While writing No Sneakers at the Office I was able to draw upon the many tools I had collected and placed into my professional tool kit. All of these tools influenced the development of and concepts in my book. Equally important, I incorporated what I’d learned from the many mentors in my life to create this book.

What inspired you to write this book? 
After observing so many young professionals struggle to adapt to corporate environments I wanted to share my experience and knowledge.

What was your first office job and what did you learn from that initial experience? 
I was a customer service representative for a small company while attending Florida State University. This job made me realize the importance of taking care of customers. In customer service, you feel the pulse of your company, which is its customers. Note that there is a difference between a career and a job, a point that I discuss in detail in No Sneakers at the Office.

What is your most memorable professional faux pas? What did you learn from it? 
In No Sneakers at the Office I tell personal business stories for the purpose of providing humor along with real life. I describe how I worried during my vacation that I would be fired upon returning to work. And upon returning from my vacation I learned that while a problem did occur while I was gone because of something I did, I worried for nothing. My coworkers decided to make the incident a teaching experience, which showed their professionalism.

I understand that you give fresh-outs and young professionals some principles of professionalism. What are they? 
The principles of professionalism that I provide in the book range from the importance of dressing for the business world to not being late. The principles create the foundation of who you are as a business professional. This foundation affects your reputation which determines your career path.

What do you think is the biggest mistake young professionals make these days, and how can it be avoided? 
I believe that young professionals do not realize the importance of having a positive reputation because, among other reasons, the business community is smaller than one realizes. Your reputation affects your ability to obtain employment both within your own organization and at others. By taking control of your career at the onset, your reputation will help instead of hinder you.

Want to win a copy of No Sneakers at the Office?
Just leave a comment below by March 2 answering the question "What is one thing you wish you'd known before you got a job?" and your email address and you're in the drawing! One lucky winner will receive a paperback galley or PDF e-book (winner's choice).

About the author: Adam T. Scholl is a business leader, manager, software analyst, and filmmaker. He drew upon both his corporate experience and artistic creativity to produce & direct the documentary, “Agent Orange: The Last Battle”. Adam is currently collaborating with attorney Evan Peterson on a business law book.  Visit the author at www.ceremarkcreations.com and join the book’s following on Facebook.

In case you're wondering--I was not compensated in any way to feature or give away this book on my blog. I am, however, dedicated to providing useful professional resources that I feel my readers will be interested and will benefit from.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Short sleeves in February

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casual gap blue sweater banana republic cowl old navy trousers enzo angiolini peeptoes nordstrom pyramid stud earrings leaf necklace
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casual gap blue sweater banana republic cowl old navy trousers enzo angiolini peeptoes nordstrom pyramid stud earrings leaf necklace
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casual gap blue sweater banana republic cowl nordstrom pyramid stud earrings leaf necklace
Banana Republic cowl neck top - 2007 - $30 (similar) / Gap short sleeve sweater - 2005 - $20 (similar) / Old Navy trousers - 2006 - $6 (similar) / Enzo Angiolini peep-toes via Nordstrom - 2007 - $70 (similar) / Nordstrom pyramid stud earrings - 2010 - gift (available) / Metal leaf necklace via Vanity Lounge Salon - 2010 - $22 (similar)

Another one from the archives (and there's still more where that came from).  This was worn on February 9, which I remember because it was my mom's birthday (and my cousin's twins' birthday, too!).  As you can tell, it was a gorgeous day outside...short sleeves! In February! And peep-toes! I miss that weather. I definitely love getting outside shots--these are straight out of the camera, not even a Photoshop auto contrast (the extent of my skillz).

One of my favorite work staples is a few good cowlnecks. I like sleeveless versions that can layer under things, or sweater versions that work well on their own. Usually I forego necklaces with a cowlneck, but that day I remember just feeling a little empty up top and grabbed this eye-catcher. I really loved the effect.

What worked
This outfit is a great go-to for a business casual office--good trousers, some sleeves, some color, and a fun (but not too crazy) accessory.  It was such a feel-good ensemble, as you can tell from my giant smile.

What didn't
I'm not sure the leaf necklace and the stud earrings really jived--I paired them together because of the dark metal colors (well, the necklace has multiple shades of metal), but I think the effect may have been too heavy.

What kind of neckwear do you usually pair with a cowlneck?

Friday, February 18, 2011

Executive Summary | Links for your weekend | 02.18.11

My binder-clipped toothpaste. I am a Colgate gal and have converted my formerly-Crest-loving husband.

Well hello darlings! After last week's crazy stressfulness, this short week has been amazing! I'm actually on vacation today (and typing this actually on the day it posts--a rarity!), and headed out of gloomy Sacramento this afternoon to a much gloomier climate (Seattle).  Feel free to take Monday off (it's a holiday, and I'm taking it off). See you Tuesday!

Before you go, here are some of my fave links from this week--I'll admit I've still got a billion unread posts in my Google Reader (okay, maybe a couple hundred) so this week's list is in no way exhaustive.

Style and fashion
Career and office
After hours
Any plans for the three-day weekend?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Curly girl

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casual loft yellow ruffle top swapped black pencil skirt steve madden t-strap mary janes curly hair
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casual loft yellow ruffle top swapped black pencil skirt steve madden t-strap mary janes curly hair
Loft ruffle top - 2008 - $30 (similar) / Textured black pencil skirt - 2010 - swapped (similar) / Steve Madden mary janes - 2003 or 2004 - $20? (similar) / Bird earrings - 2010 - gift (similar) / Black hose

Look what I found on my camera! This is from late January, and I totally forgot about this outfit (having a huge memory card in your camera can be a curse sometimes).  I think this is all of the pre-February ones, but I need to step up my game to get some of these other ones out before more start backing up.

Anyhoo, on to the actual look. I really liked this one! Totally a fun office appropriate style. I think this was just a normal day in the office, but this could also have worked if I had a meeting (although not one with the top dogs--that's suit duty).  And these shoes are so comfortable...I should probably replace them soon because the leather (or faux leather? not sure) is totally cracking. But they lasted a looooong time.

On another note, my hair is long enough to curl! A huge difference from my ear-grazing cut a few months ago. I love how fast my hair grows.

What worked
A tailored blouse in a solid color is a must for business casual wear--this top goes well with skirts, pants, or even jeans on the weekend.  The sleeves are long enough to be modest but are fine for summer, too.

What didn't
Not much. I really liked this one.

What's your threshold for suiting up? Presenting? Interviewing? Never? Always?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

What You Should Know About Friendships at Work [Guest Post]


As young professionals, we spend at least 40 hours a week at work which is as much time as we spend with our families at home. We all hope to find a job and co-workers that we love but sometimes we don’t take the opportunity to really get to know the people we work with because we are so busy. Do you know how influential co-workers can be on your attitude and perception of work? I have had multiple jobs since college and the jobs I loved the most were when I had a lot of friends around. The jobs that I couldn’t wait to leave were those jobs where I felt like no one liked me and I was a complete outsider.

So what should you do at work in order to maintain your professionalism, climb the corporate ladder and make some great friends for life?
  1. Network: Do whatever you can do to get to know as many people as possible where you work. This will not only help you get questions answered but it will also allow you to learn about different areas of the company. Maybe someday you will want to move into the marketing department. You will be very glad that you have a friend in marketing that you can ask for help.
  2. Ask questions: Ask your co-workers about their weekends and how their family and children are doing. It will make your working relationship so much better when you know personal things about each other. Make sure that you be yourself and that you are genuine.
  3. Say yes: Always go to lunches and happy hours if you have the opportunity. These events are a great way to get to know the personalities of the people you work with. You can talk and laugh about things in a relaxed atmosphere and socialize about things you may not feel comfortable talking about in the office.
  4. Watch out: Be very careful not to take part in gossip and whatever you do, don’t take sides. Make sure you set boundaries, especially in the beginning. Keep some distance when it comes to partying and sharing personal things about you. No one needs to know that illegal thing you did in high school because stories will quickly go around the office. Maintain your professionalism and keep a 1-2 drink limit.
  5. Don’t bug: Get to know how your co-workers work and when they enjoy socializing. When someone is working hard and right in the middle of an important deliverable, it’s probably not the best time to ask them how their weekend was. Be vigilant about where you are socializing and who else can hear. Don’t bug others who don’t want to hear about your amazing date last night and don’t get a reputation for socializing all the time.
I hope you can see how work can be much better if you know and LIKE your co-workers. Now, go make some great work friends!

Classy Career Girl is a consultant by day and a MBA student by night. She blogs about her journey through business school while working full time and provides advice on how to be classy as you climb the corporate ladder. You can read more about her journey on her website http://www.classycareergirl.com.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

My frumpy valentine

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casual friday denim skirt ann taylor mossimo sweater enzo angiolini nude pumps patent j.crew skinny belt
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casual friday denim skirt ann taylor mossimo sweater enzo angiolini nude pumps patent j.crew skinny belt
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casual friday denim skirt ann taylor mossimo sweater enzo angiolini nude pumps patent j.crew skinny belt
Mossimo waffle-knit cardigan - 2010 - gift (similar) / Target dobby dot shirt - 2009 - $13 (similar) / Ann Taylor denim skirt - 2006 - $6 (similar) / Enzo Angiolini Siobhan pumps via Piperlime - 2010 - $35 (available) / J.Crew outlet belt - 2011 - $5 (similar)

What started out as a really awkward outfit turned out okay (don't you love when photos tell you differently than the mirror?).  I actually started out the day with thick black cable-knit tights, but I took them off once I got to work and realized they were bothering me. I thought that the dobby top and cable-knit tights would play well together, but I was wrong.  This is much better.

Oh, and this is also what I wore on Valentine's Day. What is with all the pink anyway?

What worked
This outfit was so cozy and comfy. I love this sweater, and the nude pumps work really well with bare legs. I just noticed today that the color of these shoes is "pale pink patent."  They don't look pink at all to me (although they did the other day).  How odd.

What didn't 
At times this outfit felt really frumpy.  I much prefer the sweater open, but it doesn't really have much shape to it, and the skirt is a bit large (but one heck of a bargain).  Might want to stick with more tailored bottoms next time I try a shapeless top.

Did you go festive for Valentine's Day? Did anyone in your office?

Monday, February 14, 2011

Office Supply of the Month | Binder clips

I have a confession. For the longest time as a kid, I had no idea what binder clips did. In fact, I was a bit scared of them. Could. Not. Figure. Them. Out.

Now, I love them. I love that they can hold way more than a paperclip without the permanency of a staple. I love how they come in various sizes so that you can choose just the right one that sits nearly flush with your papers without sticking out awkwardly. I love using them away from the desk. But enough about that.

History
Louis Baltzley is credited with inventing the binder clip in Washington D.C. in 1910; a patent was granted in 1915. Back then, the most common method for binding larger amounts of paper together was punching holes and sewing them together.  Not exactly a very versatile solution. 


Uses
Binding things together
Desk-side cable management (via Lifehacker. I do this at home.)
To keep toothpaste rolled from the bottom up rolled (I do this, too)
Makeshift clipboard (binder clip + thin, hard surface)
Hanging a packet of things
Chip clip
Duvet cover clip
Wallet
Keep trash bags from slipping down
Refrigerator beer stacker

Fun with binder clips


What are your favorite binder clip uses? Favorite binder clips?

Friday, February 11, 2011

Executive Summary | Links for your weekend | 02.11.11

Chocolate raspberry cheesecake from Mischka's Cafe, which is conveniently half a block from my apartment. I ate half and saved half for later (K got his own dessert).

What a week. I have to confess that I, the eternal positive-attitude-bright-side-lover, am feeling rather defeated this week. Ready for the weekend and a re-start on Monday. I have absolutely nothing planned for Saturday and Sunday should be fun--church (haven't been in a few weeks), book club in the Bay Area, and small group (haven't had that in a few weeks, too). Looking forward to the recharge.

I'm also feeling rather concise today, so let's get on to the links!

Style and fashion
Career and office
After hours
What good reads did you find this week?

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Suburban equestrienne

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casual macys shirt vintage scarf old navy brown lace skirt nine west boots belt
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casual macys shirt vintage scarf old navy brown lace skirt nine west boots belt
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional blog business casual macys shirt vintage scarf old navy brown lace skirt nine west boots belt
Shirt via Macy's - 2007 - gift card (similar) / Old Navy skirt - 2007 - $10 (similar) / Vintage scarf via Bows and Arrows - 2010 - $12 (similar) / Vintage belt via Bows and Arrows - 2010 - $12 (similar) / Nine West boots - 2009 - $50 (similar)

This is one from the archives (January).  It was just one of those days (aren't they all) when I was short on time and long on options.  I think it was supposed to rain, which is probably why I chose these boots.  I don't remember much about this one, so I guess this will be a short post.

What worked
Neat enough for a day at work in my cubicle, but not a meeting-worthy outfit. It's always a good idea to dress for the right occasions.

What didn't
I'm not sure if the belt jives at all with this get-up. I just wasn't a fan of the way the skirt's waistline looked against the blouse, and this is the only belt I have that's thick enough to hold its own in this situation.

Do you put together an outfit as an ensemble or pick a piece and work around that? What pieces do you work around most often--shoes, dress, shirt?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

You don't need clown school to learn how to juggle


This post is not about juggling objects. If you want to learn to do that, go here (and don't forget your dexterity!).

This post is about juggling projects. Namely work projects and outside projects. More and more, folks are turning to alternate business ventures or hobbies that may or may not make any money.  Etsy shops, freelance projects, start-ups, photography gigs.  They all take up lots of time, and with 40 hours (and sometimes then some) of regular work smack dab in the middle of the week, how do you keep them from interfering?

This topic hits really close to home, as I am a juggler myself (work and blog).  So these tips are from my experience.  I am a firm believer in keeping my work life and the rest of my life separate. This isn't to say that I'm impersonal and antisocial at work, but I dedicate a productive 40 or so hours a week to my day job so that I can have my nights and weekends to myself.

Production
Whatever it is that you "produce" in your side venture can mainly be done outside of work hours. You can make your etsy wares on weekends, write blog posts the night before or even earlier in advance, or do your web design work from your couch during TV time. As I'm writing this, it's 7 p.m. Tuesday night and K is making dinner.

Maintenance
I'm talking about comment moderation (if you do that sort of thing), processing orders, troubleshooting, etc.  These things can't wait as long as emails but can wait until lunch or a break.  I respond to comments at night, sometimes the same night, sometimes the next.

Emails
With the prevalence of smart phones that keep your personal email at arm's reach, it's hard to avoid reading other emails during the day.  I keep all my notifications on my Droid silent and usually keep my phone face down so I can't see when a new email comes in. I check it when I'm at a natural break, and then do a quick triage to see if this needs to be answered now, lunch, or tonight.  Sure, any businesses you may be working with won't be there to get your email when you send it from home later on, but seeing your reply the next morning is still pretty good.  This, of course, depends on what exactly your side projects are.

Meetings
If you do have to take in-person meetings, try to add it on to the end or the beginning of the day. For example, if you work 8-5, a 5:30 p.m. meeting may be within someone else's regular workday. Or if you work 9-6, an 8 a.m. meeting may be tough for you, but shouldn't put off your client too much.  Lunch is always a good option, too--if it's not something that you can eat while you're doing, you can always bring lunch or snacks to munch on when you're back at your desk.

Around the water cooler
Depending on what your side projects are, you may or may not have told your coworkers about them.  If you have, by all means chat about your projects with your work friends, but I would caution against talking about it too much, lest you give the wrong impression. My blog is public knowledge if you're looking for it, but the topic rarely comes up at work, except when we're talking about related things (social media, web traffic, etc.).  For me, it's become more of a tool for building skills that help me at work, so I can usually turn it around to more work-related topics.

Mental sanity
Sometimes it all just gets to be too much. Give yourself a break every once in a while if possible. Take a break before taking on another project from a client or compile an inventory of goods to sustain a week's worth of orders.  I've taken breaks for mental sanity, sickness, and just plain ol' vacation.  It's good for your soul.

So there you have it. A few of my tips. Another thing to be aware of is that companies often have policies on appropriate use of their property--their computers, their software, their Internet connection.  Be aware of what these policies might be at your work, and (if you like your job) take care not to cross the line. When it doubt, things can usually wait until you're off the clock.

How do you keep your work and other work separate?

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Blazers are the best!

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional business casual gap blazer ebew everybody everywear swapped pencil skirt target versie pumps belt forever 21 gray tights banana republic necklace
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional business casual gap blazer ebew everybody everywear swapped pencil skirt target versie pumps belt forever 21 gray tights banana republic necklace
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional business casual target versie pumps belt forever 21 gray tights
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional business casual gap blazer ebew everybody everywear banana republic necklace
Gap blazer - 2006 - $40 (similar) / JC Penney top - 2009 - gift card (similar) / Textured pencil skirt - 2010 - swapped (similar) / Gap belt - 2010 - $10 (similar) / Forever 21 tights - 2010 - $3.50 (similar) / Mossimo Versie pumps via Target - 2011 - $10.48 (available) / BR Factory necklace - 2010 - $10 (similar) / Nancy Rosetta silver circle ring - 2010 - birthday present (available)

Speaking of suit-like get-ups, here is one of my own.  Must have been the Make Believe Monday floating around my head when I got dressed today, but this tone on tone (on tone on tone) outfit had the puttogetherness of a suit combined with the monochromatic look I've been really into lately (apparently--not purposefully).

This is also my first Everybody Everywear submission. If you haven't checked out this site, you should! It is like a blogger event to eclipse all blogger events. With pictures. And a cool gadget that makes thumbnails of all our pictures. Very cool. Today is classic blazer day. See how others have styled theirs here.

What worked
I loved the shape the look created--a nipped in waist, straight skirt, three-quarter sleeve.  A nice outfit to kick off a (hopefully to-be) productive week.  I was a bit apprehensive of so much black and gray, but I really like how it turned out--the textures, sparkle, and shiny patent helped balance it out.

What didn't
It's tricky wearing black on black when the items don't exactly match--I think the prevalence of gray throughout my outfit and the difference in textures really downplays the color dissonance.

How do you feel about black on black when the tones don't match exactly? Do you have any tips on making it work or do you avoid it at all costs?

Image 245

Monday, February 7, 2011

Make Believe Monday | Dress + jacket = suit

You may already know, I am a suit nerd. I just love them, probably because I don't have to wear them everyday. While I have a few pant suits and skirt suits, what I'm really jonesin' for lately is a dress + jacket suit.  It combines my love of sheath dresses and blazers for a really put together look. 

From my online browsing, it seems that these dress + jacket suits are rather elusive to find. Your best bets when finding such a suit are to go the suit suite route (Banana Republic monogram and J.Crew super 120s come to mind...a single fabric and set of colors in a variety of items and cuts) or just go in person to a department store.  There is something a little mature and classic about this look, which may be hard to find in trendier stores.

Here are some of my picks...including sets that are meant to go together and a pieced together look from Loft.





Do you like the dress + jacket suit look? What tips do you have for shopping for a suit like this?

Friday, February 4, 2011

BRB, K?


Just popping in to let you know I'm not dead, I'm just recovering from a nasty stomach bug that hit suddenly on Tuesday night (I'll spare you the deets).  For now, please enjoy this photo of the sunset on my drive home from work a few weeks back. Don't worry, I was watching the road when I took this.

See ya Monday!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

More of the same. Or is it?

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional hm cardigan calvin klein top loft pencil skirt enzo angiolini pumps hue nude fishnets
 We interrupt our weekly scheduled advice post to bring you this special announcement.

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional hm cardigan calvin klein top loft pencil skirt enzo angiolini pumps hue nude fishnets
 Is it a bird? A plane? 

No, it's the SUN!  And it's still out at 5:30 p.m. after I get home from work! This is a winter first!

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional hm cardigan calvin klein top
 I am sooooo happy.

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional enzo angiolini pumps hue nude fishnets
H&M cardigan - 2010 - $30 (similar) / Calvin Klein outlet top - 2009 - $20 (similar) / Loft pencil skirt - 2009 - $13 (similar) / Hue nude fishnets via Macy's - 2010 - $10 (similar) / Enzo Angiolini pumps via Piperlime - 2010 - $35 (similar) / American Eagle chunky chain - 2011 - $4 (similar) / Nordstrom pyramid studs - 2011 - gift card (available)

This outfit was inspired by Jaclyn of Sparkle Birds. The second I laid eyes on this outfit, I wanted to layer different textures in the same shade.  I don't have as many fun colors in my closet as Jackie does, but I do have lots of neutrals. So here is my neutral monochromatic look for the day. Not as fun as hers, but it's a start!

What worked
Studs! These are my favorite. I love that I now have earrings that sort of match my studded shirt. And these are my favorite shoes of the moment...shiny patent leather just melts my heart.

What didn't
You can't tell so much from the photos, but the tights and shoes did not jive with the outfit at all! These shoes are much more pink-beige than yellow-beige, which is especially noticeable against the yellow under-tones of my skin. And the tights are more brown-beige. Looked a little like death. But at least the photos turned out well! I also think the outfit would have looked much better without the cardigan, since it sort of dampens the sheen of the shirt, and the different textures are the key to this outfit.  Still a little chilly for that, though.


Is it hard for you to find neutrals that blend together? What tips do you have for a good monochromatic look?

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

My favorite work dress

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional business casual calvin klein sheath dress macys white collared shirt gap belt nina pumps

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional business casual calvin klein sheath dress macys white collared shirt gap belt nina pumps

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional business casual calvin klein sheath dress macys gap belt

Rampage trench via Macy's - 2007 - gift card (similar) / Collared shirt via Macy's - 2007 - gift card (similar) / Calvin Klein sheath dress via Nordstrom - 2009 - $90 (similar) / Gap belt - 2010 - $10 (similar) / Nina pumps via Ross - 2009 - $16 (similar) / Urban Outfitters double finger ring - 2010 - birthday gift (available) / Mystery tights


Can I go back and make New Year's resolutions that I've already sort of done? I haven't made any yet, but I could almost say that my resolution was to take pics of all my work outfits. Wait, I haven't actually kept to that, so maybe I don't want to go back and make it a resolution. But I'm doing much better than I did before? This outfit was worn on January 19 (gasp), a full week and a half ago. I've got a few more outfits that I haven't posted but don't worry, I'll make my way through them.

While I love a good sheath dress (and Calvin Klein's are among the best, in my opinion), I never quite know what to do with a crew neck style.  Something about the high neck and knee length just creates a huge swath of fabric. The collared shirt did the trick, I think. And the belt helps, too.

What worked
Goodness gracious I love this dress. So. Much. It's a great length (makes my legs look longer than they actually are), a great quality (one you go lined, it's hard to go back), and so perfect for the office. You can almost see some of the darting/wait detail in that last photo (it may be a large swath of pinstripe, but it's got some nice visual interest and strategic fitting going on).

What didn't
Nothing comes to mind. I think this was a pretty winning outfit. (Don't ask about that first photo up there. It sucks, I know.)

How do you break up large expanses of fabric, whether solid or print? What are your favorite ways to spice up a high crew neck?