Thursday’s TPS Report: Merino Wool V-Neck Cardigan

Our daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices.

Halogen® Merino Wool V-Neck CardiganiconI swung by the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale online this morning to see what was left, and was surprised to see lots of cute things still on sale. I had not noticed this simple merino wool v-neck during my initial browsing (click here for my top 15 or so picks from the sale), but I love love love it (particularly in the “blue dark” color, pictured); it’s also still available in espresso and medium heather gray for regulars, and black, espresso, medium gray, magenta, and plum for petites. It’s currently $52.90, but the price will go back to the normal $79 after August 1. Halogen® Merino Wool V-Neck Cardigan


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(L-3)

Comments

  1. Legally Brunette :

    I bought this in the dark blue color! One of the only cardigans I’ve tried on that doesn’t look frumpy on me. Very nice material too.

    • Coincidentally, I am actually WEARING this cardigan today (it came in the mail yesterday). I like it a lot. It’s very comfortable, fits nicely, and the fabric is suprisingly lightweight (but also substantial).

      • So I guess you are in the 5% of the country that is not currently living in Satan’s sauna?

        • Oops, I mean 5% of the US. Perhaps you are overseas.

          My brain has melted.

        • Or she, like me, works in a building that is like an icebox year round and therefore she needs something to put on over her clothes when she gets to the office. Satan’s sauna outside…Santa Claus’ artic inside. ;-P

          • MissJackson :

            Amen.

          • Well, that’s a good point. I am getting a sort of temperature whiplash here (DC) – super hot and muggy outside, extra cold inside because I think they have to run the AC harder to combat the humidity. Not wool sweater cold, though.

            I have family in Seattle so always notice that part of the country in the weather forecast, and I have to say that being in the 50s-60s during the summer sounds appealing right about now. One of these family members asked about visiting me in DC in the summer, I told him he should re-think unless he wants to spend most of his time here indoors. I really wonder how someone who’s lived in Seattle for 10+ years could tolerate a DC summer trip. There’s something about the heat here that is much, much worse than usual hot, beach-type vacation spots.

          • In the Northwest, we’re having a blast.

            It’s difficult not to continue posting the temperature on facebook for the rest of the country to see. :)

        • AnonInfinity :

          Haha! I love the phrase Satan’s Sauna! It’s so true. I’m a morning exerciser, and if I wake up after 7 now I have to run on the treadmill because the temps are already up in the 90s. Hate. It.

        • It’s 60 degrees and raining in my city today. I think we’ve only had two days this year that topped 75.

          • Seattle, if I’m remembering correctly? *mental note to move there* 104 in DC tomorrow!

          • Jane Fairfax :

            The headline in the Seattle Times yesterday stated that we have had only 78 minutes of summer (temperatures over 80 degrees). I am really starting to feel bitter and cheated by the weather. The two months of beautiful weather in July and August are the only things that make living here the other 10 months of the year bearable in my opinion. I am not a native north westerner, so I don’t have quite the same tolerance/affection for the mizzle.

        • SF Bay Associate :

          The heat dome is reminding me of one of the reasons why real estate is so expensive here. Stay hydrated, PollyD. It really does sound like Satan’s sauna out there.

          • I’m with you SF Bay. I live in Berkeley, work in SF, and I am so, so grateful for the weather we’re currently having. (almost makes up for this year’s non-existent spring.)

  2. SF Bay Associate :

    As I mentioned in the Weekend Open Thread, I felt like an old man in this sweater.. something about the big buttons. However, MaggieLizer pointed out that some ladies like the grandpa look. The wool knit did feel nice (not itchy) and it was a nice length (not too short, would cover waistband on all but the tallest corporettes). Kat’s blue recommendation was definitely my favorite color in person. The raspberry color looked great too.

    • MaggieLizer :

      Thanks for the hat tip, that’s what I was thinking when I read this post too. I ordered one in the regular and one in petites because I was worried about the length (I’m super short). I should get both in the mail today so I’ll post my thoughts tonight or tomorrow.

      • I’m 5’4″ so not really petite, but I’ve found that regular sizing seems to think 5’6″ is average. Anyway – I got the blue in a small regular and the espresso in petite small and the length of the sweaters is the same – the biggest difference was the sleeves. The length of the petite sleeves was much better than the regular. The regular sleeves were bunchy and came down over my hand, but the petite stopped right at the heel of my hand (top or bottom of wrist depending on how you look at it). I’m going to keep both because I love the blue so much, but just wanted to share.

  3. I actually bought this sweater in the blue and espresso when I linked through your last post on that bow shirt. I received them all yesterday and I LOVE the sweaters – they’ll be great for fall – but the shirt does not work at all. The weight of the bow pulled the shirt down too low to be appropriate for work. Great finds though!

  4. Career advice threadjack,
    You might recall how I have been contemplating a new job and how the atmosphere at my company is becoming alarming.
    Well, in the past weeks, I had been distracted and had not followed up on the first offer seriously. Now, I am on the market again.

    Several senior managers are leaving the company (we have an average of one departure per week in a 100 people office). By September, I expect to have a double reporting to a very bitter person (think unprofessional snarky remarks all day long, and she made few people resign).
    She already screamed at me twice today and I don’t even report to her.
    Now, I am finally ready to do the big jump and consider options around December, so meanwhile, I will stay at the company to pay some debt.

    I have re-contacted the head-hunter and he was happy to learn I have gotten my diploma.
    He proposed I explain to him what job opportunities interest me and in parallel he would propose matching offers.

    My question is how do you start the process of choosing what career path you would like to pursue?
    I have 2 years job experience but have been doing 3 functions in parallel (small department so multitasking).
    I am aware that my next job could determine my whole career path. I was also thinking of asking for a regional job at my company (multinational) so I could go to another country but being expatriate with 2 years experience is too much to ask.

    I was thinking of discussing with my General Manager (who already resigned) because we were close. But other than that, I have no clue how to define a career plan, any interesting readings, websites, tests?
    Can I discuss the career choices with the head hunter as a brainstorming, or would that make me look un-decisive?

    • I don’t think it’s good to discuss this with a headhunter – they aren’t career advisors. Does your university offer career coaching? That’s how I got most of my advice. There are also professional career coaches. There might not be one close to you – I think you mentioned that you live in a smallish city in north Africa – but surely there are ones based in DC, NYC, London, Paris, etc, who can consult via email or phone. The cost for a session with a career advisor will probably be well worth it.

      You might also look for a mentor who works in your field, but has 10-20 years more experience than you do. Perhaps an alumna of your university, or one of your parents’ friends?

    • Houda – deciding what career path you want is #1) a big question #2) not a conversation for a headhunter – more like a career coach! and #3) not the right question anyway.

      Your next job will not “determine your whole career path”, unless you decide to go way left field and become an interpretive dancer or a nun. Nor is there a Single Right Answer that will hold for the rest of your hopefully long career. You sound fairly young, and your goal right now should be to a) gain exposure to as many things and people as possible b) build up your human capital by amassing a good basic skillset and c) take advantage of your relative youth, energy, and flexibility (I am assuming). And you need a framework to start laying these things out. Here’s a suggestion, to start with (and obv I don’t know anything about you, but generically speaking ask yourself):

      1) What industries do I find interesting? Law, media, finance, consulting, manufacturing, retail, non-profit, pharma, etc. etc. ? Think of what interests you personally. 2 years of experience is not enough to call yourself an expert or be pigeonholed into anything, so don’t worry about that.

      2) What skills and functions am I good at or want to build my skills in? Writing, financial analysis, research? working with people or working alone? Am I creative or not? Do I like numbers? Do I like having a consistent routine every day or do I want variety? etc

      3) Where in the world do I want to be? Near family in country X, or explore country Y instead? City or suburb? Int’l or domestic? (however you define that).

      The point of this is to map what interests you and what you are good at against an actual job. (I’m simplifying, but the intersection of industry, function, and location will narrow down most job searches nicely.) Be flexible, have a few ideas in mind and while you will be influenced by whatever you’ve been doing since 200X, let go of the idea that this is a binary, make or break, yes or no decision. Careers (and lives) are long and windy and anything but linear.

      Once you come up with some ideas, give them more shape by researching actual jobs and companies, and unless you’re very close with this headhunter – or unless they are more career counselor than HH – I wouldn’t talk to him/her until you can give multiple, concrete examples of your interests, like “marketing for a consumer retail company in Southern Europe”.

      Finally, realize that few people get all 3 out of 3. Most people have to settle for 2 out of 3.

      • Great advice thank you.
        I will set this weekend to lay down all the details and come up with more lucid preferences to share with the HH.

        • Please forgive that I can’t recall what field you are in (so not sure how applicable this is), but just wanted to make a pitch for getting invovled in any associations that serve your profession. Not only can they be a great resource for education to expand your skill set, but also they often offer invaluable networking opportunities and career development resources. I belong to several organizations and have found them helpful both early in my career and now. Sometimes just taking a glimpse at LinkedIn profiles of some of the speakers/chapter leaders/authors/etc. and seeing their career paths can be very telling about the types of roles and responsibilities that often come with getting ahead. I’ll often use this as a way to identify potential gaps in my own experience.

    • I second the advice to talk to mentors…

      But also, this is absolutely not the last work move you will make in your career. People rarely stay at jobs longer than a few years these days.

      It’s like buying a house – make the place you live what works for you now. You don’t have to make it the house where you will retire.

  5. That blue cardigan would be perfect with the dress I’m wearing today. Unfortunately, it’s only available in XL.

    So happy with all the sales and deals right now. I’ve been wanting to buy another one of the Old Navy v-neck tee shirt dresses. I live in the one I have, but it’s been at full price. I bought mine with a coupon. Today I got a 30% off coupon and the price dropped so I got it for $18.50.

  6. I like the length and the pockets. But I wouldn’t be able to decide without seeing the fabric. A $79 sweater may have whisper-thin fabric.

    The one review on the site is positive.

    • I’ve seen the cardigan in person and the quality was really nice. The blue color (pictured above) is really lovely.

      • I bought this in the grey, and I really liked the color, and the feel of the buttons, etc. I was surprised, because I normally wear a medium in Halogen, but in this, I may actually need a small — the medium sleeves came down over my hands, and the waist had too much fabric. Did anyone else find this runs a tiny bit large?

    • Runnin' for it :

      I tried this on in the store and bought a couple of them. I bought it in another color online. The fabric is not whisper thin, but I went a little larger than in the size than I might have otherwise because of the fabric. I wear either a medium or a large depending on the clothing item. I would have bought these in medium, but I tried on a medium black sweater with a light colored tee underneath and could see the tee through the sweater.

      • Mine have not arrived yet, but the associated pencil skirts did. The fall purple color is dark and rather blue ish rather than plum ish. Just what I wanted. The slate grey is as the name suggests. Yeah! Glad I am not the only one with cool year round office climates! Makes the outside worse though at the end of the day…happy weekend Corporettes

  7. http://jezebel.com/5822762/how-forever-21-keeps-getting-away-with-designer-knockoffs

    I, personally, loathe Forever 21. The knockoff stuff aside, I can never find anything that fits even close to properly, the stores are always a jumbled mess, and the fabric is yuck. However, I do see stuff on blogs and in real life that I think is cute, and find out its F21.

    I thought the article was interesting, though. Especially the speculation about how it just might be part of F21′s strategy to steal designs, settle and do it again.

    • I use F21 for cheap accessories: headbands, costume jewelry etc.

    • I have a friend who buys really cute things at Forever 21. I’ve tried going into the store but get overwhelmed by the volume of clothing.

    • I don’t typically shop at F21, but I doubt that F21 diverts sales from the actual designers. Most of its customers would not “upgrade” to a $500 designer dress just because the F21 version wasn’t available.

      Not to say that what they are doing is ethical, but I don’t buy the argument that the designers take a real economic loss because of it.

      • i would agree with you if we were just talking about very famous designers, like dvf or anna sui – but forever 21 (and urban outfitters as well) have long been documented ripping off lesser known independent designers as well, who don’t necessarily have the resources to sue and who have limited market share.

      • Maybe some folks are disuaded from buying the $500 version because they see many people each day wearing the F21 version.

      • Alanna of Trebond :

        I agree with this. I also think that copyright for clothing is a bit ridiculous, given how much “stealing” there is within the fashion industry — even between established designers (rather than F21 or H&M stealing from DVF or Chanel). There are other, better ways of supporting smaller independent designers than new regulations — not to mention that those same independent designers may well be the targets of copyright infringement actions, which will likely be enforced by established entities.

        //one of my classmates wrote a paper about this and I was assigned to read it because of my “expertise” (i.e. the prof. knew I liked fashion) and as a result I have strong views about it.

    • My 16 year old niece is living with us this summer and has blown pretty much every paycheck at F21.

      Sadly for her, though, several items’ seams raveled apart on the first or second washing.

      I’d rather have one nice thing than ten cheap things that literally fall apart. (A difficult lesson to teach a 16 year old!)

  8. Review on the Halogen skirt in Mustard:
    Love it. I wear a six (tall) in JCrew clothing and despite the reviews to size down, I ordered the six. It could be just a snooch smaller, but I know the four would have been inappropriately tight.
    The color is exactly as it appears online and it’s lovely. The fabric is soft and heavy.
    I’m 5’8” and it hits me right in the middle of my knee caps.
    I think I’ll be buying it in black and in the purple shade as well.

    • *The color is Yellow Raisin. I don’t know where I came up with “Mustard”.

    • I just bought two of these skirts – one in yellow raisin and the other in purple. I was looking at the JCrew pencil skirts (for $120), but after reading all the rave reviews here about the Halogen skirt (for $49.50), I bought those instead. I’m excited to see how they are in person!

      BTW: JCrew has FREE SHIPPING on all orders right now …

      • JCrew just added a lot of new fall stuff online, and I have to say, I might be falling back in love with JCrew again.

        This dress looks great:
        http://www.jcrew.com/womens_category/suiting/super120s/PRDOVR~48444/48444.jsp

        And I saw this sweater in store on Monday–it was beautiful:
        http://www.jcrew.com/womens_category/sweaters/crewnecksandvnecks/PRDOVR~46703/46703.jsp
        Too expensive for me, but this is definitely something I will be sale-stalking.

        • OMG and that dress comes in tall? Swoon!

          Sorry, I just turned into a 12 year-old. I just…the pretty…want.

          • SF Bay Associate :

            I had the same reaction. I will be watching J.Crew Aficionada for reviews of the dress. That inset waistband makes me think it would be expensive to alter. But that color! And higher neckline! And sleeves! Swoon indeed.

      • My comment is stuck in moderation, but JCrew has a lot of really nice new fall suiting. I love the “Memo” dress, and the twisted-front wool dress with sleeves looks nice too. Best of all, the dresses come in Tall!

        • Oh man, I was all excited about the Memo dress until I asked the chat consultant about the length – a “tall” size six measures 33.5 inches from shoulder to hem. Obviously body types differ, but on my 5-8 size 6 self, that hits about 3-4 inches above my knee. Tall?? C’mon Jcrew.

      • MaggieLizer :

        I ordered the mustard and purple too, but I haven’t gotten them yet. With all of the talk about the sizing on these skirts, the anticipation is killing me!

      • Did everyone on Corporette order yellow and magenta??!? LOL. I did as well – ordered at the store last wkend b/c they were not in stock. Which means I didn’t have to pay shipping. Can’t wait to receive them!

    • I ordered in the yellow raisin and the bright magenta color too!

      Ordered my regular J. Crew size (8) and am pleased. But I have a big butt, work with a bunch of perverts*, and don’t like my pencil skirts to “accentuate” my “curves” (can’t wait for the pencil trend to go away and the a-line to come back), so if you have a regular or small-sized butt, you may be OK sizing down.

      *I promise I am not Ellen, but I think I might work in her office. :)

  9. I bought the featured sweater in that very blue color — it arrived yesterday. I love the color and the pockets make it interesting. The material is lightweight but not flimsy. It runs a bit small or else is meant to be fairly close fitting. I am very happy with it.

  10. This sweater is cute. But at the moment I’m sweltering in my office, which has no AC vents, and even looking at a cardigan is making me hotter. I fear it won’t be long until office-appropriate dress/footwear/hair goes by the wayside. At my old job I would freeze in the over-cooled office, but I’ve decided this extreme is worse.

  11. Maddie Ross :

    Has anyone bought the Halogen Peplum Sweater Jacket at the NAS sale? I was looking at the cardigan and saw this on the side of the page. It looks intriguing, but wanted thoughts on the buttons and fit.

    • i tried it on and did not buy it.
      Negatives:
      - gaped a bit oddly at chest when buttoned. i think i need buttons to be higher
      - looked a bit too casual unbuttoned
      - in the wrong (right) light, material reminded me too much of a sweatshirt – probably b/c i was trying on the gray one, other colors might be better.
      Positives:
      - cute and comfortable. i think it would be good with jeans and the right cami or tank top, unbuttoned, casual. but i wanted it for work.

      FWIW i tried on a small or XS. chest is 34C.

    • MaggieLizer :

      This is disheartening. I ordered the sweater jacket in the magenta/raspberry/whatever-it’s-called color and it should arrive today. I believe SF Bay Associate mentioned on the weekend thread that it fit oddly.

      Would it be terrible of me to leave work for an hour or so as soon as my package gets here so I can try everything on….

      • My Nordstrom’s package arrives this evening (no sweater jacket), and I can’t wait to get home either!

      • SF Bay Associate :

        It fit me oddly, but I am small of bust, so it didn’t hang right on me. I think it could look nice on someone else. I agree it could look sweatshirt-y in the light gray, but it did not look sweatshirty in the other colors.

        My boxes come tomorrow. I love watching them move closer – I’m getting clothes from Austin, Dallas, Chicago, and Nordstrom online. I love their inventory system!

        MaggieLizer, c’mon, don’t leave work early for this. Patience :).

      • Ooh, please report on the sweater jacket. I am eyeing it for my second sale order . . .

        And I like knowing that I’m not the only one who obsessively checks on my packages.

  12. Anonymous Poser :

    Threadjack–
    Feel free to redirect me if you know where to find this information on Corporette, because I recall seeing it before, but can’t find it.

    I bought a suit at NAS: my first suit in a few years and the most expensive one ever, so I’m a bit nervous. It’s being shipped to the house because my size was not available at the local Nordstrom. Alterations, of course, will be needed, and I understand that since I made the purchase during the sale, at least some of the needed alterations will be free.

    I am concerned that the alterations also be good. I recall that the general opinion here is that Nordstrom is fine to trust with things like hemming pants, but I believe that my jacket sleeves may need to be shortened, as well. Is this something that you would trust Nordstrom with? What about taking the jacket or pants in just a little?

    TIA, and thanks all for your recommendations of Nordstrom. This was my first experience shopping there, and I’ve thus far found their customer service to be just as you have described it.

    • Yes, I would absolutely trust Nordstrom with jacket sleeves or taking the pants in. I actually only had one experience where I was less than satisfied, I took it back and they were falling all over themselves to apologize and turned it in 24h. After that, it was perfect.

    • MaggieLizer :

      I’ve had many many jacket sleeves (suits, blazers, winter coats, rain coats, you name it) taken up at Nordie’s and they’ve turned out fine.

      I’ve only ever had one problem with their tailors, but they fixed it. I needed the sleeves taken up on a spring jacket. When the alterations were finished, the sales lady realized that the embellishment that they had removed and sown back on was crooked. She ordered another jacket and shipped it to me overnight once it was finished. It took about a week longer than I had expected, but it didn’t cost anything extra.

      • Anonymous Poser :

        Thank you all so much! I’m less nervous about the whole process, now.

        I’m hoping to have an interview soon that may mean I’ll no longer be a poser, but right now I’m just waiting for a call back (and making plans in case that doesn’t happen). Cross your fingers for me, please! Thanks :-)

  13. ChicagoLit :

    Has anyone else noticed that the obnoxious heat wave has also led to a wave of inappropriate professional dressing? Case in point: I had a status in court today (state court, so a bit less formal than federal court, but it’s still court) and saw a number of younger women step up in short sleeves and one in a sleeveless silk V tank–and all in sandals. Now I’m admittedly old school–I even wore hose today (though I have no problem with those who don’t)–but even though it’s blistering hot outside, the courthouse is air conditioned. Doesn’t good judgment advise that you slip on your jacket before stepping up?

    • Ms. Basil E. Frankweiler :

      I have to admit that these past couple of weeks I have worn more sleeveless items that I ever have in a professional position, but this was after I saw my two female partners do it two days in a row (and everyday since) because the compressor on our air conditioning is broken and the part needed is on backorder and I never go to court.

      • I am in-house and sleeveless very often in the summer (business casual office)…but I agree with the OP. Court is different. I remember when I was a judicial intern in a court room with broken A/C, the attorneys in a case requested permission to take off their jackets before they did so. Don’t see why you can’t keep the jacket on if the A/C is working…

    • I think it’s just a summer thing. I was in state court in Texas in June (in a normally pretty conservative city that’s not Dallas/Houston/Austin/San Antonio) and the woman arguing the MSJ hearing before me was wearing a sleeveless, cheetah-print dress with no hose and sandals. No jacket. No sweater. And the judge didn’t seem to care.

      I don’t think I’ll be modeling myself for future court appearances after her, though.

    • When I used to practice law in Las Vegas, it was explicitly permitted to wear sandals and no jacket from May-September. I doubt any judges mind that attorneys dress for the weather – they’re probably jealous since they’re stuck in polyester robes.

    • I’ve noticed a lot of sandals in the Daley Center, too, as well as sundresses and jersey skirts slowly replacing actual suits or suit-equivalents. The judges don’t seem to care, so I don’t know why I do, but it bugs me!
      I will admit I’ve been wearing skirt suits without pantyhose though. Wouldn’t mind them inside but it’s been too hot for me walking there.

  14. Threadhijack:
    Ladies, I have come to terms with something. I have no fashion sense. I don’t understand colors, trends, fabrics or fit. I give up. I end up with tons of BR/AT/JC clothes that I dont particularly like, and that dont particularly fit me well. My little sister is a fashion guru and can help me with casual clothing, but I think it is time to go the personal shopper route for work clothes. I am debating between Nordstroms and Bloomingdales and am curious as to what you all think of the two. I am looking for:
    (1) Someone to help me spend approximately $1k a quarter on business casual attire and occasionally a new suit. I want to try the “blazer as a separate look,” which I clearly cannot handle on my own. I also want to incorporate skirts and dresses in my work wardrobe, which I have not done as of yet.
    (2) Someone to help me pick out an outfit for a charity fundraiser I am organizing in connection with a board I sit on. It is a cocktail party/silent auction.

    Thoughts?
    TIA!

    • one girl's opinion :

      I’m a Nordstrom fan all the way. Get a personal shopper, problem solved. They are great, patient, friendly, energetic, will answer all your questions, and they have a good website too.

      Bloomingdales has crap customer service, I don’t like their website as much, and I just don’t enjoy the experience of shopping there.

    • Go Team Nordstrom! Good luck!

    • karenpadi :

      Related threadjack. Anyone have experience with a Macy’s personal shopper for the same type of clothing?

      I’m in San Jose if that helps.

      Thanks!

    • Accountress :

      Nordstrom, for sure. They’ve got amazing stuff, and the staff is all super friendly and aware of their stock.

    • Before deciding you might also want to check out a local independent personal shopper/stylist. Some of them will even offer packages that include closet organization/review where they help you integrate your new purchases into your closet or even just create new outfits with what you already have and help you decided what to keep, what to take to a tailor, and what to throw away. They may also have the inside scoop on sale schedules for the stores in your area.

      • LadyEnginerd :

        Any tips on how to select an independent stylist? I am about to have to upgrade my wardrobe from “no one cares what you wear in grad school” to business casual, and I think I might need a helping hand.

    • Honestly, I might go private as well. I had an appointment with a PS at Nordstrom last month and I wouldn’t recommend my particular experience to someone who didn’t already have a strong point of view (and was therefore at least semi-immune to the hard sell).

  15. Can I whine about shoes? I was amusing myself by looking at new arrivals on Endless, and what is up with the shbootie things with the cut-off toes? I like the shoe/bootie look, but I would wear them with socks or tights and I don’t think I’m young and hip enough to pull off the socks with peeptoes look. Also, what is up with all the synthetic shoes? I have been eyeing some oxford style shoes and it seems like most are either synthetic or, if leather, about $100 – I’m too cheap to pay that much for a sort of trendy shoe. And my feet fear synthetic shoes.

    Oh, the torments I endure!

  16. Ladies! I am resigning from my firm in the very near future. So ridiculously excited to move on. Practically giddy. Just thought I’d share.

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