Friday, December 31, 2010

OMG u r the best!!!!! :) [Greatest Hits 2010]

[Greatest Hits 2010: Each day this week, I will be reposting a popular post from the past. This was first published April 8, 2010. See original post and comments here.]

You know what I'm talking about. You've seen it. I've seen it. I've done it. You've done it ('fess up). It's the super-casual, abbreviation-laden, exclamation-heavy email, often punctuated with an emoticon of sorts sent to a colleague at work.

It's one thing to shoot a quick note to your bff or even to your best-work-friend about non-work-related subjects (lunch on Tuesday ok? :))*. But when you're dealing with work projects or issues, simple and professional is key. Email is a tricky medium to begin with--a single punctuation or word can change the tone of an entire correspondence--so here are a few tips:
  • Word choice: Since this depends a lot on the subject of your email, it's hard to go into real specifics here. So we'll just stick with be clear and be careful. For example, if you have a qualm about the way a project is or will be handled, calling it an "issue" right off the bat will automatically position you against them--which might stand in the way of productive problem-solving.
  • Punctuation: I'm a bit grammar-crazy (I wrote the style guide for the organization I work for and copyediting is part of my job), so I may be a bit biased. But a few general tips: you only need one sentence-closer, unlike the title of this post (unless you are using two dashes to form an em dash), watch your commas and semicolons, and exclamatory statements are best kept to a minimum.
  • Capitalization: First letters in sentences. Names. Proper names. Magazine/book/show/movie titles. Not to capitalize: basically everything else. Refer to your company style guide if you have one (note: style guide is not capitalized because I'm talking about style guides in general). (Almost) nothing irks me more than misused capitalization.
  • Tone: Professional doesn't necessarily mean uptight and rigid (enter silly ha-ha work-appropriate joke here), and if you know your recipient (or all of your recipients) have similar humor then go ahead a infuse slight sarcasm. The real stuff is best saved for in-person jokes, where they can hear your voice tone and see your expression. Email is not a good conduit for either of those.
  • Structure: Organizing the contents of your email is the main key to getting your point across--a well-organized email goes a long way. Your email should start with a brief introduction to what you want to talk about and any pertinent background information, and end with a conclusion and next steps. For even a short email, split your topics into different paragraphs, with a topic sentence in each. Bullets are your friend.
  • Closing: This is one I've struggled with often. I sign my personal emails to my best friends "xoxo," and most of my business emails with a variation of "Thanks." But what if that doesn't flow with the content? I often see and in the past have used "Best," but on second thought it felt awkward. Best what? I'm the best? You're the best? Turns out it is short for "Best regards," which I feel is preferable to best (better than best, if you'd like). If the context calls for it, a "See you soon" or "Hope you join us" could work as well. Some other options: "Warm regards," "Regards," "Cordially," "Take care," and the classic "Sincerely."

The New Professional may not know all the answers, but your email doesn't have to give you away.

What are your top email tips?  Share them in the comments!

Photo source: Flickr user esparta

*The emoticon - parenthesis presents an interesting conundrum in text-only emails that leave it sideways.   Do I close the parenthetical, making my happy face look like it has a double chin?  Or do I scoff in the face of grammar and let the smile act as a closer?  I don't have a good answer to that yet, but will let you know if I ever come up with one.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Wear and wear again: tulip skirt [Greatest Hits 2010]

[Greatest Hits 2010: Each day this week, I will be reposting a popular post from the past. This was first published June 17, 2010. See original post and comments here.]

 know, a lot of bloggers do this, but's a good idea.  Not only am I on a shopping diet, but I have a tiny closet (err...makeshift closet...this apartment came with zero closets!), so I rewear my items a lot.  And I mean, A LOT.  So I thought it'd be fun to see how I've done different things with the same piece multiple times.

First off: my favorite black tulip skirt.  Bought at The Limited on sale for $20 last year, this thing is comfy, flattering, and totally work appropriate.  It went down to $15 soon after, which bummed me out, but cost per wear on this thing is already less than $1.

Tights, tightless.  Booties, gladiators, flats.  Can you tell I love this skirt?  I've got big plans for it in the future, too...with a belt, with some peep-toes, and with a blazer.

How would you style this skirt? I'd love ideas to mix it up even more.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Underneath it all [Greatest Hits 2010]

[Greatest Hits 2010: Each day this week, I will be reposting a popular post from the past. This was first published August 18, 2010. See original post and comments here.]

A good foundation is key to a good end result. I'm not talking makeup today (although I guess it could apply), or construction (again, also true here), but I'm talking clothes and fit. 

My good friend and faithful reader T brought this up a while ago when she asked "Can you do a post on VPL?  Oy."  Or something along those lines.  And as someone for whom fit is often an issue, this topic is near to my heart.

Visible Panty Lines and their cousins Visible Bra Lines (VBL), Visible Bra Straps (VBS), and Visible Undergarments In General (VUIG), can take an outfit from fab to fugly.

So how do you lay a good foundation?  Well-constructed, well-fitting, and (for bottoms) lined clothes definitely help.  If you're stuffed into too-tight clothes your undergarments will show more often than not.  If the fabric is too thin or too clingy, everything underneath will show.  Here are some tips to minimize the dreaded acronyms...add your own tips in the comments!

If you're anything like me, any underwear with elastic openings will cause visible lumps and bumps (I may be slim, but I am soft).  Even the ones that say "seamless."  Lacey undies can create a not-so-smooth surface that makes their presence known.  So I go with these.  The edges laser-cut (or whatever you call it) instead of elastic, so no squeezing! Make sure you get the right size, though, because the lack of elastic sometimes results in rolling of the edges (resulting in visible lines).  They're a little pricey, but I've yet to find a cheaper brand that produces something similar (have you?). You could also go thong or G-string iff you so choose.  When I'm wearing an unlined skirt, I add a slip.

I hate bra shopping, and I don't know anyone who actually enjoys it.  Finding the right fit is the key to combatting VBL.  It should sit flat to your chest in between your girls, not ride up in back, and not create bulges across your back or under your arm.  The cups should not gape, nor should your goods spill over. If frippleage is a problem, the cup should be lined enough so that you won't show through when you're cold.  Oh, and let's try to avoid a line where the cup ends and your skin begins, okay?  It feels like way too much to ask.

While I haven't found the all around "perfect" bra yet, I have learned a few things along the way. Look for smooth fabrics and fewer seams.  The cup should thin out toward the edges so there is no visible bump.  Steer clear of lace and other embellishments (for some bras at least...I have no problem with having a few fun bras lying around that I won't be wearing to work).  I like these because of their smooth and seamless construction (although if you are naturally blessed in the bosom, you might not want to go with a push-up).

As for VBS, this is more of a clothing-fit issue.  Get yourself some wider straps or a convertible bra with more options.  Or sew in a secret bra strap holder (instructional video here).

I've heard it said that slips are a little old-fashioned, but I believe they were so popular because, hey, they work!  A lot of office skirts are already lined, and do not need a slip, but for the girl on a budget, you can't always cross an otherwise great item off the list because it's missing a lining, so I have quite a few unlined pieces in my closet (most of my pants, some of my skirts, and a lot of my dresses).  I recommend having at least one full slip for dresses and one half slip (or pettipant/pettileg) for skirts.  Admittedly, finding the shorts things are much harder (I've had mine since high school and have no idea where I found them). Things to look for: lace may cause bumps, make sure the neckline is slightly lower than your lowest cut work dress, and consider the shape of the skirt.  An a-line slip stuffed into a pencil skirt is going to cause bumps.

Valuable not only for their modesty-retaining capability when paired with low-cut shirts, wearing a cami under a button-up top can help reduce gaping between the buttons (I was going to take pics to demonstrate but I don't think I want to post that on the Internet. Let's just say, by stretching the fabric across the chest, the button-up shirt then has a smooth surface to lie against).  Look for a cami that doesn't have bulky seams or straps, or one that has wider straps so they don't dig.  Lacey camis, while cute in some looks, may cause bumps if worn as an undershirt. A thin stretchy fabric will be wearable in summer, too. 

At the very least, you should own one of each of the above in skin tone and in black.  That should cover your bases.  If you have to choose one, choose skin toned (ok, so that's the very least).  I was emotionally scarred by a white-bra-under-gray-dress-in-flash-photo incident in high school that drilled that into my head indefinitely.  I hope you don't have to suffer through any similar experiences.

I really don't have anything against lace (I mean, it is sooo popular in lingerie for a reason), but the truth is, lace isn't smooth.  Save it for days when you're wearing jeans and looser clothes.

What are your foundational secrets? 

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Where to wear | Interviews for creative-types [Greatest Hits 2010]

[Greatest Hits 2010: Each day this week, I will be reposting a popular post from the past. This was first published July 14, 2010. See original post and comments here.]

A few weeks back, my friend T posed this question in a comment:
I would love to know what I should wear for graphic design/artist interviews. Entire suits are overkill for us. What do you suggest?

T brings up a good question -- not all business clothes are right for all businesses.  Not all interviews are alike.  We recently hired a new graphic design intern here at work, and let's face it...presentation matters in this situation, especially in such a visual job.

There is a slight caveat here.  While, yes, we don't want people judging us solely based on appearance, it can affect an interview, both positively and negatively.  And that's just the same outfit.  The first thing to ask yourself is: what is my design/creative philosophy?  Are you a minimalist that lets the content and elements speak for themselves?  Do you push the limits of what's acceptable and hope it pays off?  Are you an unabashed girlie girl designer? Are you great at dealing with in-house clients for corporate design work?

A few general rules still apply to job interviews, especially those for in-house design jobs, in which a corporate HR person will probably be involved in the process (their opinion does count in those cases).
  • Keep it covered.  Skirts and dresses should be no shorter than 2 inches above the knee.  Sleeveless looks should still be demure, and keep that neckline in check.
  • If you are currently in a creative job, try something you would wear to the most formal day on your job.  Chances are it's still not a suit.
  • Separates (blazer + pants or skirt that don't match) are your friends. 
  • Depending on your style, use accessories to show your creative bent.

Since creatives are such a diverse bunch, here are some looks I found for each of the different design styles mentioned above.

The Minimalist
Minimal does not equal boring.  The key to a minimalist creative look is fit and cut.  Have fun with proportions.  I love this top with a narrow trouser, white asymmetrical blazer and some architecturally inspired heels. Minimalists can also go with mens-inspired pieces, such as a trousers and a vest (no jacket). 
I had a hard time finding looks at retail sites for this one, but think Jil Sander for inspiration...beautiful cuts and drapes with minimal frill.

The Experimentalist
Mix prints and graphics for an out-of-the-box look.  The blazer adds polish.  I would aim for a slightly longer skirt.

The Girlie Girl
Have some fun with colors and accessories here.  I love the brightness of this look, but might go with a shorter jacket so it doesn't look like you should be taking the coat off when you go indoors.

The Corporate Designer
This is the most similar to the traditional office interview look.  Try mixing a blazer with fun details with trousers or a pencil skirt.  Throw in some playful shoes and accessories.  I like this blazer, too.

Do you have a creative, a traditional, or other kind of job? What did you wear for your interview?

Monday, December 27, 2010

How high is too high? [Greatest Hits 2010]

[Greatest Hits 2010: Each day this week, I will be reposting a popular post from the past. This was first published September 1, 2010. See original post and comments here.]

 My work heels

Heels can do wonders for your calves, snap your spine straight (helllooo balance), and create a sexy strut.  But is there such as thing as a heel too high for the office.  In short: yes. But it's not always that easy.

I think we can all agree that an over-the-top shoe like this one is not office appropriate. But what about something with a smaller platform that's closed-toe?  Or if the heel is chunky or a wedge, does that affect how high your heels can be?

While most office dress codes don't specify a min/max height, tradition states that a lower heel (<3") usually translates as more professional than one that's higher.  But in most business casual offices, there is quite a bit more leeway.

So how do you figure out if your heels are appropriate?  Start with these questions:
  • What is on my agenda today? Will I have to walk? There is nothing pretty or professional about limping around in heels when you know you have a lot of walking to do during the day. Practicality first (sometimes).
  • Who will I be seeing or meeting with? Do they have any preconceived notions of propriety? This goes for clothes, as well.  If you know an old-fashioned good ol' boy bigwig is coming in, you  may want to play it safe for the day. 
  • Would I wear these shoes to a club? If so, you may want to think twice (unless they're more office appropriate shoes you just happen to wear to a club, like me, who wears knee-length dresses, long coats, and closed-toed pumps).
  • How high is the platform? Steer clear of anything higher than about 3/4", and try to keep the rest of the shoe a little conservative. 
  • How skinny is the heel? Especially for heels higher than about 4", spiky stilettos can look inappropriate or dangerous. If you're going to do a taller heel, try a stacked or chunky heel (plus it helps with balance).  A wedge can also look polished, especially with heels 3" or lower.
  • What does the rest of the heel look like? If you're wearing something especially high, it helps if the rest of the heel is a little less attention-getting.  Details like ruffles, buckles, straps, neon, and shiny patent only call more attention to your feet.  A classic almond-toe pump in a matte leather and 4.5" heel is less likely to raise eyebrows than a platform pink strappy shoes at 3".
  • What else am I wearing? If you're wearing trousers, the rules can be a little looser, since the bulk of your shoe will be covered by the pant leg.  If you're wearing a skirt, consider the fact that people can get a 360 degree view of your shoe.
Don't get me wrong, I love a fun heel and have several. But for the sake of professional decorum and not distracting others, let's keep the crazy at home, okay?

How high do you think is too high of a heel for the office? Do you have any personal rules for work footwear?

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Happy Holidays (and seven more things)

The Evans's 2010 DIY Christmas Card

Well, folks, it's that time of year again. Time for family, friends, and food. So I wish you a Merry Christmas! I'll be taking a short break until the new year, but will have some oldies but goodies scheduled in the meantime for those of you that may be newer.

Before I leave, Jess over at Stylepint tagged me to share seven things about myself. So here goes.
  1. I've never played on a sports team. My parents put me in dance, swim, gymnastics, tennis--lots of individual sports--but were afraid that I'd get hurt playing team sports since I was sort of a small child.
  2. I am the oldest of two children. I have a younger brother who lives in Houston. I've tried time and again to get him on this blog as a male style contributor (we do have the same DNA, you know).  Holla in the comments if you want some male style on here, too.
  3. I prefer reading nonfiction to fiction. I like both, though I suck at finding/making time to read anything but blogs and magazines these days.
  4. I teach preschool Sunday School at my church. Those 3-5 year olds are just so darned cute, and can be pretty smart, too. We talked about Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden one morning and one child spoke up with, "We compost in our garden!" He's two-and-a-half.  Only in Davis.
  5. I love wedding shows on TV.  Especially "Say Yes to the Dress." I'm never planning on getting married again (this one's a keeper), but I just love pretty dresses.
  6. In college, one of my favorite things to do was bring my textbooks to the beach and study while tanning. One of the perks of going to school near the coast!
  7. I love to travel. This year, I've been to eight states (NV, NM, MD, DC, VA, FL, WI, IL) and one other country (Taiwan).  Hoping to take a cross country road trip one of these days to catch some of the states I've never been to.
I'm passing this on to Jill and Meredith at the Ladyboard, Colleen from Scrap and Run, Virginie from Virginie's Cinema, Eek, Anne at the Medical School Life & Wife, and Kinsey from In Kinsey's Closet.  Feel free to post some secrets/facts about you after the holidays!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

30 for 30 | Twice as nice [summary]

Most worn items
Brown boots: 11 wears
Skinny jeans: 9 wears
Red pumps: 8 wears
V-neck cardigan: 6 wears
Black blazer: 6 wears

Most worn tops
Blue & white striped button-up: 4 wears
Cream t-shirt: 4 wears
Brown sweater: 4 wears

Most worn bottoms
Skinny jeans: 9 wears
Black textured pencil skirt: 5 wears
Boot leg jeans: 4 wears

Most worn dress
Gray ruffle dress: 3 wears

Least worn items
Turtleneck vest: 1 wear
Gray shift dress: 1 wear

Gray ruffle dress (replaced black A-line dress)
Gold bow pumps (replaced green button-up shirt)

  • Aside from my two least-worn items above, everything else was worn at least twice.  
  • The turtleneck vest/sweater is now in my giveaway pile. It's too short.
  • Skinny jeans are super-versatile. 
  • Sleeveless shift dresses really are more of a spring/summer item. So are nude pumps.
  • Seriously considering doing away with these black booties, too.  Despite all my efforts, they are not comfortable at all.  Since they were a hand-me-down, I'll be passing them down again. I do sort of like the style, so I may look for a comfortable pair to replace them.
  • I picked a crap-load of tops. Most of them only got worn 2-3 times.
  • Flat boots are a major closet workhorse for both casual and office wear. If you don't have some, get some.
Favorite outfits: 6, 17, 19, 27

What were your faves?

Monday, December 20, 2010

The end and the beginning

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional old navy jeans hm cardigan gap belt nina heels casual friday
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional target leaf headband casual friday
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional leaf necklace casual friday

The Rundown:
11 + 16 + 24 + 8
Target headband - 2010 - $8 (similar)
Leaf necklace (via Vanity Lounge Salon) - 2010 - $22 (similar)
Gap belt - 2010 - $10 (similar)

I made it! Day 30. A really basic outfit, but most of the day was spent climbing on ladders setting up for our holiday party Friday afternoon.   A couple of the social committee gals and I decided we'd dress up a little for the party, and since I already wore outfit 30 during the day, you can bet I reached for....another item from my 30?  I added in a non-30 top and shoes to mix it up.

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional wet seal tee target skirt glitter flats polka dot tights holiday party
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional glitter flats target polka dot tights holiday party
Tee - Wet Seal - 2006 - $7; Skirt - Target - 2007 - $6; Tights - Target - 2010 - $7 (available); Flats - Reflections (mall store) - 2007 - $10

Pardon the sick-face in these photos. I started feeling like I was coming down with something on Thursday night, and by the time I got home Friday all I wanted to do was sleep. So I decided to take make-up pics on Sunday. Of course, my illness is only getting worse this weekend, so these Sunday pics totally suck.  Back to bed now.

Friday, December 17, 2010

[Sacramento] Heart Clothing Boutique giveaway winner

Thanks to all the ladies that entered my first local giveaway!

Put all the entries in my trusty sun hat.

And the winner is...

Sarah from Classroom Chic
Check out her blog to see how she stay stylish while working as a primary school teacher.

For those of you in the area that didn't win (or ::gasp:: didn't even enter) you can still get a discount at Heart until the end of January. Just mention "New Professional" at checkout for 15% off your purchase! 

Executive Summary | Links for your weekend | 12.17.10

My icy window yesterday morning.  Those scrapings are the closest I've been to snow in years (doesn't it look a little snowy? Maybe I've forgotten what snow looks like).

Happy Friday!  How is your Christmas shopping coming along? I'd estimate I'm about 35% through my list. Yes, I suck. But at least I got my Christmas cards out this week (err...K really got the Christmas cards out).  I, on the other hand, am facing some sniffles and deep chest coughs--but I am not sick!  It's supposed to rain for the next six days. Time to hunker down.

Style and fashion
Career and office
  • I love Jen's newest art project--adds such a great personal touch to her home office. [Made by Girl]
  • Updating your Linked In profile? Check out the 10 most overused buzz words. It's so easy to fall into the buzz word trap. [Jane Has A Job]
  • Who doesn't love a good business savvy book? Check out these recommendations for female entrepreneurs. [Simply Stated by Real Simple]
  • Some eye candy for the cubicle set. 10 amazing office designs from around the world. [Coolist]
After hours
  • Totally loving this DIY mailable birthday cupcake kit. Beware, I may miss your birthday on purpose just to make one of these. [Apartment Therapy]
  • I totally love Sydney's ideas for fun date nights. She is the cutest. [The Daybook]
  • Nikki hosted the most awesome craft party ever on Saturday--check out her pics here.  Unfortunately my felt pine cone craft was the most tedious ever. [Little Bits of NikNakk]
  • Check out the photos from last week's Created in California event. Great designers, great food and drink, great company. [Juniper James]
And in case you missed it, check out my interview with and my guest post on Cubicle Chic this week.

What do you have left to do before the holidays?

I'm on a horse! [and video...oo la la]

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional business casual friday skinny jeans franco sarto boots banana republic blazer layered necklaces
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional business casual friday skinny jeans franco sarto boots layered necklaces
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional business casual friday skinny jeans franco sarto boots banana republic blazer layered necklaces
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional business casual friday layered necklaces

The Rundown:
1 + 5 + 17 + 25 + 27
Vintage braided belt via Bows and Arrows - 2010 - $7 (similar)
Forever 21 pearl and chain necklace - 2005 - ? (similar)
Nancy Rosetta silver circle ring - 2010 - birthday gift (similar)
Random ball chain necklaces

Ok, so I'm not actually on a horse, but it looks like I could be, right?

This is, hands down, my favorite outfit.  This week, at least.  Enough said.

It worked.

Now onto the fun stuff...Tiffany from My Fashion Epiphany tagged me to share seven facts about myself.  So I did it in a video. Enjoy!

From The New Professional
Previous lists of facts about me here and here.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

January sponsorships available

sponsor the new professional email advertise blog sponsorship

Sometimes more is more

sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional gap sweater swapped black pencil skirt enzo angiolini peep toes green cable knit tights simply vera wang kohls vintage scarf belted
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional gap sweater kohls vintage scarf belted
sacramento office fashion blogger angeline evans the new professional swapped black pencil skirt enzo angiolini peep toes green cable knit tights simply vera wang kohls

The Rundown:
6 + 12 + 30
Vintage silk scarf via Bows and Arrows - 2010 - $12 (similar)
Gap belt - 2010 - $10 (similar)
Simply Vera Wang cable knit tights via Kohl's - 2009 - gift (similar)
Premier Designs faux pearl drop earrings - 2010 - $19 (similar)

Two more days! Two more days! I've been holding this outfit idea in my head for weeks, and I just had to squeeze it in before the end of the 30.  How trendy is this? Belted scarf.  Tights with open-toed shoes. Snowmen in the background (pic 2). The green tights were a bit of an afterthought--I was originally intending to go with these opaque tights, but they were unavailable (they've moved into the bottom of my laundry basket along with half of my 30 items). I figured since I've done the green and brown thing twice already this week, I might as well keep going (my other options for opaque-ish tights were blue and brown).

What worked:
The belted scarf! And I actually am really loving the tights + open toes thing. I really don't have an excuse--even as cold as this week has been, we've still be in the 50s, which I know is eons warmer than what some of you are experiencing.

What didn't: 
Felt a little like overload with the scarf, belt, colorful tights, and drop earrings.  I'm not sure what would be better, though--paring back or piling more on for a complete look. I think an extra ring, necklace, or bracelet actually would have helped (I know: this totally bucks Coco Chanel's rule about taking one item off before you leave the house, but really, aren't rules meant to be broken?).

Do you typically err on the side of too many accessories or too few? How do you find the perfect balance?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Work Style Week at Cubicle Chic

My weekly Wednesday work advice post can be found today at Cubicle Chic, as part of Work Style Week.  Thanks to Lindsay and Meredith for putting this all together--read Rachel's and Gaby's posts from earlier this week--Grace and Nicole are up next!

Check out my post on bringing holiday cheer into your office here.

I'm a tree!

sacramento office fashion blogger the new professional angeline evans banana republic dress layered franco sarto boots business casual
sacramento office fashion blogger the new professional angeline evans banana republic dress layered business casual pearls
sacramento office fashion blogger the new professional angeline evans banana republic dress layered franco sarto boots business casual
sacramento office fashion blogger the new professional angeline evans premier designs pearls safety pin business casual

The Rundown:
3 + 12 + 21 + 27
Target? faux pearl studs - ?? - cheap (similar)
Premier Designs faux pearl strand (doubled over) - 2010 - free with purchase (similar)
Black/gray sheer hose - ?? - ?? (similar)
Vintage braided leather belt - 2010 - $7 (similar)

You guys, I am getting so close to the end of the challenge. It's killing me! This home stretch is where I get a little desperate and try to fit in the items I barely wore throughout the rest of the challenge. So far, so good. I really liked this outfit, except the dress is too small and nearly cut circulation off to my forearms. I had to have K help get it off tonight, and there were marks on my upper arms where the cuff was.

Double the layering, double the fun! Somehow, when I put the dress on this morning it was short. Like, more than 3 inches above my knee short. So I pulled on my pencil skirt underneath.  By 3 p.m., it was fine, and basically covering up the whole skirt. I call it the disappearing under-layer trick (TM).

Oh yes, and I dressed like a tree. Again. Although I live in a hippie town, I am not a treehugger. But at least I can blend in.

What worked:
I love love love the button-up underneath the dress, especially since the neckline has gotten stretched out. Modesty feels so nice.  And I figured out how to turn my long strand of pearls into two short strands (without buying one of those one-use gadgets).

What didn't:
Not sure if the belt over the built-in belt worked so well. It's hard to tell in the photos, but in real life the brown belt was sitting on top of a dress belt. I wrapped it around a bunch of times and tucked it under itself, but it was still sort of bulky.  Oh well.  I need a tutorial sort of like Academichic's but backwards--how to get hide one!

How do you style clothes with built-in belts? Do you always go with what's there or do you like to mix it up?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Take me to your leader

the new professional sacramento office fashion blog angeline evans business casual gap wide-leg pants swapped merona tweed blazer earrings pin nina pumps
the new professional sacramento office fashion blog angeline evans business casual gap wide-leg pants swapped merona tweed blazer earrings pin nina pumps
the new professional sacramento office fashion blog angeline evans business casual swapped merona tweed blazer earrings pin
the new professional sacramento office fashion blog angeline evans business casual gap wide-leg pants nina pumps

The Rundown:
5 + 19 + 23 + 8
Earrings as pins
Studded belt - 2010 - swapped (similar)

Does anyone else get a bit of a Star Trek vibe from this outfit? I've only got five days left of this challenge (woohoo) and I've been trying to pull out some of my lesser worn items. I've loved the look of belted blazers this fall, but I don't think I quite pulled it off. Something about these shoulder pads. I actually pinned the collar up a little higher because I didn't really like the t-shirt showing through.

What worked:
Nice fall colors. Fun sparkles. (Those are earrings, just stuck through the collar. May not work for thinner fabrics, but on tweed it didn't leave a noticeable mark). My cousin used to make fun of me because I dress like a tree a lot--brown and green. I like it.

What didn't:
Odd shoulder-waist proportions. Next time I think I'll try a sleeker blazer, and maybe pinning the overlapping front (this kept slipping).

Are you into shoulder pads or no?

If you haven't already, hop on over to Smashion and check out my interview.

Monday, December 13, 2010

A (teeny tiny) bit rock n' roll

office fashion blog the new professional angeline huang evans business casual friday skinny jeans heels banana republic blazer layered chains
office fashion blog the new professional angeline huang evans business casual friday banana republic blazer layered chains
office fashion blog the new professional angeline huang evans business casual friday heels enzo angiolini
office fashion blog the new professional angeline huang evans business casual friday skinny jeans heels banana republic blazer layered chains

The Rundown:
7 + 17 + 25 + 30
Layered silver chain via Kohl's - 2009 - $12? (similar)
American Eagle gold/silver chain - 2010 - $7 (similar)
Various size ball chains, acquired over the years
Rose ring - 2006? - cheap (similar)
Studded belt - pre-2005 - ?? (similar)

I have a confession. I really didn't think through the title of my last post, and spent about 30 minutes Friday morning trying to pick out a "rock n' roll" outfit.  This is what I wore on Friday, to my office Christmas party. Oh, and to set up all the tables, chairs, and decorations in between.  Luckily these are my comfy heels.

Basic basic basic.

What worked: 
Four short months ago, at the conclusion of my first 30 for 30 challenge, I declared, "I don't think I like the skinny jeans + heels look on me."  I'd like to recant that statement.  Maybe it was the type of heels I tried out before, but I've been really into it this time.

What didn't:
That weird cowlick bang thing.  Oh, hair.

What's your feel on skinny pants + heels?  Love it, or is it not quite for you?

Friday, December 10, 2010

Executive Summary | Links for your weekend | 12.10.10

Candles! The first thing I do when I get home for work is light up some of these babies.

Holy moly, guys. It's Friday! Today is super busy--deadlines at work and our annual office holiday lunch and gift exchange--so I'll just let you enjoy some links.

Style and fashion
  • We all know someone who isn't as secure about their body image as they should be (I have some wonderfully beautiful friends who have not yet learned to appreciate their own beauty).  Here are some tips to be a body image role model for others (check the comments, too!). [Already Pretty]
  • Check out this hilarious animated video from one of my fave new remixers. [Hudson's Happenings]
  • I'll be the first to admit I get way more catalogs than I need, especially since I am not shopping. Here are some tips on tearing yourself away from the lure of catalogs. [Already Pretty]

Career and office
  • Love office supplies? Check out these ornaments, hacked from or inspired by your faves. [Shoplet]
  • For the first two years at my job, I took the bus, which in the winter meant walking several blocks in the dark by myself. My boss was always worried, but I had a few tricks up my sleeve for safety (a hugely heavy purse and the pointy-keys-through-the-fingers fallback).  Here are some more tips to keep yourself safe, even if you're a car commuter (like I am now). [Classy Career Girl]
  • I love walking the aisles of Sephora trying on perfumes, but I never wear them into the office. How about you? [Corporette]
  • Negotiating is always a touchy subject...these tips help you be prepared for the process and get your way (or something close to it). [Classy Career Girl]

After hours
  • It's been a while since my wannabe design-nerd side has come out, but it's out in full force this week!  Pantone announced its color of the year and a forecast for what's to come in 2011. [Simply Stated by Real Simple]
  • Bloggers--stay engaged with your readers to keep them coming back. I love this post, but you should also click through to the other FBFF gals, who have some great ideas and tips. [Grit and Glamour and Modly Chic]
  • If you haven't stopped by the new Citizens of Rosebud found treasures shop, make sure to do so next weekend when they're open! I've been dying to stop by.
  • Enter my giveaway to win a $15 gc to Heart Clothing Boutique, or stop by the shop and mention "new professional" for a 15% discount. Giveaway ends Wednesday.
What good reads did you find this week?

The New Professional Gift Guide | Etsy fun!

It's nice to find things at stores, but there are so many more options with Etsy. Here are my favorite Etsy gift picks (office-themed, of course).

Check out all of the New Professional's holiday gift guides here.

A little bit country

office fashion blog the new professional angeline evans business casual target skirt franco sarto flat boots vintage belt kohls tights
office fashion blog the new professional angeline evans business casual target skirt franco sarto flat boots vintage belt kohls tights
office fashion blog the new professional angeline evans business casual new old jewelry sacramento handmade
office fashion blog the new professional angeline evans business casual target skirt franco sarto flat boots vintage belt kohls tights

The Rundown:
4 + 18 + 27
Vintage braided belt - 2010 - $7 (similar)
Simply Vera Wang tights (via Kohl's) - 2009 - Christmas gift (available)
Kmart socks - 2006 - ?? (similar)
Urban Outfitters double-finger ring - 2010 - birthday gift (available)
New Old Jewelry earrings - 2010 - blogger meetup swag bag (similar)

Another cold and rainy day, another verging on casual outfit. I've only worn this skirt once so far in the challenge, but it is a really great skirt. Seeing there are only a few days left, I figured I should give the skirt its due, and tossed it on today. It's a great shape to pair with a button-up, and of course I mixed the brown and black (again).  Still kept my down parka on all day at work though...having a window is great but the draft makes my cubicle noticeably cooler than the rest of the office. Evidence: I was talking to our receptionist, who sits nowhere near a window, and was sweltering in my coat. Made a mental note to doff it once I got back to my desk. As soon as I reach my desk, I feel the chill coming in through my coat, so I kept it on. It's that noticeable.

Lip color experiment is on hold for today, mainly because I left my lipgloss at work on accident. So you won't be missing out on another lipgloss that doesn't add any color to my lips. This color thing is harder than I thought it would be.

How about these earrings? They're from the Sacramento Fashion Blogger Meetup...New Old Jewelry's Steven Millington-Foster sells his goods at the Midtown Bazaar, a weekly indoor event featuring local crafters.  Check it out.

What worked:
Back to my proportions--fitted on top, volume on bottom.  Oh well.  It works.  I was considering pulling a full week of neutrals, but forgot the past two days by putting some red in there. So maybe it's neutrals + red week. How festive of me.

What didn't:
Nothing in particular.  Don't you just love those days?

No question today--open thread! Write whatever you want in the comments (within reason and with respect to one another, of course).

I think you can guess what tomorrow's outfit will be based on today's title...

Thursday, December 9, 2010

A shawl to stay warm

office fashion blog the new professional angeline evans business casual gap sweater rockabilly jeans diy cowl crocheted
office fashion blog the new professional angeline evans business casual gap sweater rockabilly jeans diy cowl crocheted
office fashion blog the new professional angeline evans bigelow lip tint 1138

The Rundown:
6 + 7 + 15 + 29 
Forever 21 necklace - 2010 - $5 (similar)
DIY cowl - 2009 (similar)
C.O. Bigelow Mentha Lip Tint #1138

I woke up this morning to the soothing pitter patter of raindrops on our deck. So soothing that it nearly soothed me back to sleep. Luckily I tore myself away from my warm bed and got myself to work. I'm getting a little sick of my combinations, so I threw on this cowl/shawl to mix it up a bit.  I was inspired by a cowl I saw on etsy last year so I made one. I like it a lot. Sometimes I toss around the idea of starting an etsy store, but there are already a ton of really talented vendors on etsy and the last thing I need right now is another project. But if you'd like I can do a basic tutorial on it!  I also recently crocheted a similar (but smaller) neckwarmer for my best friend's birthday after I saw she'd linked a few etsy ones on her gift list.

Lip color experiment: lip gloss.  This one does not show as much as I thought it would. The tint, when it comes out, is a bright red. 

After work I headed over to Created in California, a great event organized by Juniper James to showcase local Sacramento designers.  My faves were Marty May and Morris & Terry.  Had a great time with my other blogger gals, too!

What worked:
The cowl! I've never actually worn it all day as a shawl before, but I really liked it. It really made the outfit. So comfy. (can you tell that's my buzz word this week?)

What didnt:
I'd rather not have worn jeans on a Wednesday, but it was a good day for that.

What do you revert to on days you really really want to be comfortable but still have to get it together for work?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Heart of Sacramento [and local giveaway!]

I've mentioned before how amazing the Sacramento fashion community is. Often shadowed by the big city glitz of nearby San Fran, Sac has a flourishing local economy that seriously supports each other. I'm so excited to be part of this, starting with my recent visit to Heart Clothing Boutique.

Sacramento lifer Vanessa Lopez opened this sweet gem just a few months ago, and it exudes her fun personality, from the signature white deer head greeting you to the delightful display of sparkles under the counter.  I found some great pieces that were within my budget (were I shopping) and perfect for work...I've already warned Vanessa to watch out for March when I'm on the loose again. It's nestled in a cozy spot on 19th and Capitol

Here are some photos for my visit. Sacto folks--keep reading for a special offer just for you after the eye candy.

 5th Culture
Did not catch the label, but a really pretty top.

Now that you're as in love with this boutique as I am, I've got a special gift for Sacto gals!
Giveaway time!
One lucky Sactown gal will win a $15 gift certificate to Heart Clothing Boutique! Get up to three entries to increase your chances:
  1. Comment on this post and leave your email address for one entry.
  2. Follow the New Professional via Google Friend Connect, RSS, or Bloglovin for a second (note in the comments).
  3. Tweet about this giveaway for a third (note in the comments).
Contest closes next Wednesday, December 15, at 11:59 p.m. Winner will be announced next Friday. Contest open to Sacramento area residents (I want you to be able to use it!).

In the meantime, the New Professional readers will receive a 15% discount from now through January 31 at Heart Clothing Boutique--just mention "New Professional." Go! Shop!

For my readers outside of Sacramento, I still love you. Unfortunately Heart has yet to expand to online retail, but when they do you'll be the first to know.