Suit of the Week: Classiques Entier

Classiques Entier® 'Ania Mélange' JacketFor busy working women, the suit is often the easiest outfit to throw on in the morning. In general, this feature is not about interview suits for women, which should be as classic and basic as you get — instead, this feature is about the slightly different suit that is fashionable, yet professional.

Hello, beautiful. I love (love!) two things about this suit: that layered hem and the crosshatch fabric. First, the hem: it’s interesting! It’s different! It isn’t too fussy or overly feminine (no bows, ruffles, ribbons, or more). Second, love that dark charcoal color with a slight crosshatch pattern. Gorgeous. The jacket (Classiques Entier® ‘Ania Mélange’ Jacket) is $268, and the skirt (Classiques Entier® ‘Ania Mélange’ Pencil Skirt) is $148. A matching pair of pants (Classiques Entier® ‘Ania Mélange’ Pants) is $168.

Classiques Entier® 'Ania Mélange' Jacket Classiques Entier® 'Ania Mélange' Pencil Skirt

(L-5)

Comments

  1. I love this suit! The hem on the jacket adds just enough interesting detail without being fussy and I, too, love the color. Great recommendation, Kat!

    • Bursting out :

      Love this suit! In fact, so much that I bought it during the anniversary sale.

      Fit tips: the jacket, in my normal size 8, was a little big. I needed to size down for the proper fitted look. The pants fit well, but were a little more ‘bootylicious’ than I like for work* – my husband liked them, and thought they were fine for work (and he has very conservative work clothing taste). Both pants and jacket went back.

      I kept the skirt – which fit perfectly, but remained unworn – until Weds., when I came to grips with the fact that the pregnancy and subsequent unpredictable body changes could prevent me from wearing it for a long time.

      *side note: I just found out that the person who made me uncomfortable by leering when I wore anything remotely body conscious at work has been bothering others, as well. Any advice in dealing with someone who has done nothing ‘actionable’ (no touching, no comments, just eyeballs that undress…)?

      • I’d call him out on it without calling him out on it.

        “Oh no, did I spill something on my blouse? No? I saw that you were looking at my torso so I assumed there must be a coffee stain.”

        Repeat as necessary.

      • One former colleague, when asked a question from a man who was staring at her chest, replied, “They’re not going to answer you.”

      • I find that a simple, direct “Stop looking at my chest” embarrasses him and doesn’t make you look bad in any way (snarkiness can be misinterpreted).

  2. So my office is what I think used to be an internal file room. Its pretty big but no window, and its so depressing. I want to rearrange the furniture, and plants are going to be an objective. Any recs for indoor plants? Any recs for sprucing it up in general? Its kind of depressing. I have two big paintings that came standard, think typical like hotel art, reprints of famous stuff in big frames. so not my style but ill deal for now

    • Oh i didn’t even look at the suit, love it.

    • i think bringing in some of your own lighting to make the space feel a little bit more open and bright would help a lot with the depressing vibe! unfortunately i have never had great luck with office plants, but you could try air plants?

    • This may sound weird, but I have a mirror that looks like a window–it’s divided into 4 quadrants by a wooden “frame”–and it really opens up a space that lacks light. It almost tricks one into feeling like there’s a real window there. If you can pull off something like this, give it a try.

    • I have a couple of desk lamps in my office that help immensely. If you have the space, I’ve seen a partner’s office with a standing lamp that made it super homey (though she was scary). Bulletin board, colorful pictures. Do you have the room for some personal furniture? You don’t want it to start looking like a living room, but a small couch could work.

    • Pothos! They are awesome. You can literally pinch off one leaf, plant it in water, and it will turn into a new plant. That’s an example of how easy they are; I’d still keep it in soil :) I’ve had them in two offices, one with little and one with no sunlight, and it was awesome. They don’t even need to be watered often.

    • You need this:
      http://technabob.com/blog/2007/11/25/fake-window-sheds-light-on-your-cubicle/
      I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the link will make it.

      • Tillandsias, or air plants. No soil, no mess, and my friend’s mom keeps hers in the bathroom where it never sees the light of day and is fine. To water, just soak them in a bowl of water for 10-15 min, 1 or 2 times a week. They are a bit funny looking though, but I like them.

    • Baby DC Attorney :

      I had a similar office last year, and I bought a ZZ plant that actually thrives with no water or light: http://www.gardeningcentral.org/zz_plant/zz_plant.html. It even had new leaves budding! (It is also thriving now next to the window, so it is pretty versatile).

      • I agree with the zamzam plant…you might also try sanseveria/mother’s in law tongue which needs little water. A ponytail palm might work too.

        What about some color/pattern in your desk accessories, in/out box, pen cup, post-its? You might be able to put a length of coordinating fabric or some fabric place mats underneath glass if you have a glass-topped desk. I have put fabric underneath those clear desk blotters … which I have on the tops of short file cabinets. Initially I used the blotters to reduce scratches, but liked the patterned look of the fabrics.

        There are can lights which shoot the light up to the ceiling, typically used for backlighting of potted plants, which may also give you some lift and atypical light to your space.

        Had a cinder block, windowless room on internship in NM, I remember…these tricks I made up have stuck with me for the next 30 years.

    • I’ve had good luck with a cast iron plant in my windowless bathroom.

    • I know incandescent light bulbs are going to be an endangered species any day, but when I had what we nicely called an “interior” office, I relied on my little incandescent desk lamp for something other than the dreaded fluorescent lights.

      I still use it, and I have a corner office with windows on two sides now. (There is hope!) It makes a huge difference to me and how I feel sitting at my desk.

  3. Hi Corporettes. I’m trying to help out a friend who is currently a 2L and thought perhaps you all would have some ideas. She’s interested in working for a mid-sized or boutique firm specializing in international work – not civil or human rights, but business or government-side public international law. Without going into detail, she has the correct background for this and she goes to a T14 law school. I practice public international law, but on the public sector side, and all the law firms melt together in my head. She did OCI, but hasn’t gotten any offers yet, and OCI was smaller than usual now (due to the economy) so she wants to expand and start applying directly to firms. For whatever reason, her career services hasn’t been of much help (probably because of her unusual background and fairly specialized career interests).

    So, do you know of mid-sized/small/boutique firms in DC or NYC with an international law practice that she could target for a summer associate position?

    Thanks!

    • Terrible but i have to say... :

      …that if she isn’t resourceful enough to hop on the internet and figure out which firms have significant international law practices, then I don’t care about her background because she’s already shown me that her research skills are non-existent.

      • She could research this day in and day out (and, as far as we know, she has) and still not come up with a complete list of all mid-sized/small/boutique firms in DC and NYC with an international law practice taking summer associates. This posting is a shot in the dark and shouldn’t be discouraged.

        • Thanks for the non-snarky remark. Considering I’ve been working in this field for my entire career and I can’t come up with the names of specific firms, I’m not sure why anon at 3:48 thinks that a 2L should be able to. But whatever. Too bad that no Corporettes seem to know the market! There are a bunch of firms that have practiced before the body I work for but I can’t remember any firm names, and google isn’t helping much.

    • I would try asking recruiters if they know of any firms that do this work. If anyone would know, they should.

  4. Posting again to try to get out of moderation…

    I’m trying to help out a friend who is currently a 2L and thought perhaps you all would have some ideas. She’s interested in working for a mid-sized or boutique firm specializing in international work – not civil or human rights, but business or government-side public international law. Without going into detail, she has the correct background for this and she goes to a T14 law school. I practice public international law, but on the public sector side, and all the law firms melt together in my head. She did OCI, but hasn’t gotten any offers yet, and OCI was smaller than usual due to the economy so she wants to expand and start applying directly to firms. For whatever reason, her career services hasn’t been of much help, perhaps because of her unusual background and fairly specialized career interests.

    So, do you know of mid-sized, small or boutique firms in DC or NYC with an international law practice that she could target for a summer associate position?

    Thanks!

  5. Early, and silly, threadjack.

    It just occurred to me this morning that I may have been using bobby pins the wrong way for the past 30 years. Which direction does the pin go in your hair – with the crimped side up or the flat side up?

  6. MissJackson :

    Love this suit. Want it. Need to wait until next month for budgetary purposes. Leave one in my size, please, Corporettes!

  7. I know that this is a weird question, but what do you guys (particularly you guys who are in a job, married, no kids, no real drama sorts) talk about with your parents?

    Mine are always fussing at me for not calling enough (Do they call me? Of course not!), but I just get into this rut and I have no idea what to talk to them about. “How’s work?” “Fine (tries to think of a few sentences to add)”; “How’s husband?” “Fine”, etc. I guess I’m just boring (I like being boring!), but I just don’t really know what to say more than the very typical. So I put off talking to them for weeks at a time. We get along fine, so it’s not an issue of not liking them or too much (insert common complaint about parents) or anything like that. I know some people talk to their parents every day or several times a week- that blows my mind!

    • AnonInfinity :

      The weather! My parents can talk for ages and ages about the weather. They are also big gardeners, so we talk about that sometimes. I live near where I grew up, so I’ll occasionally run into or hear gossip about people I grew up with, so I’ll pass that along.

      Mine never call me either and then complain that they never talk to me. I’m glad I’m not the only one!

      • Geezerette :

        For a different perspective, I have married adult children, but my parents are also still living. I never call my adult children — it’s too hard to find a time that’s convenient for them, and I have vivid memories of my in-laws ALWAYS calling at the wrong time. We mostly text, with occasional phone calls and e-mails. With my mother (my father does not like the phone), I call on Mothers’ Day and her birthday, but I e-mail her every day. E-mail is perfect, because I can ignore all the annoying political or religious stuff and the long details of her friends’ illnesses, but she feels loved, getting a daily e-mail. (And I’m considered “the good daughter”!)

    • In the several times a week camp. I call my dad two or three times a week as I drive home. Mam died two years ago and I want a connection with my dad. We talk about family (him, me, my SO, my sister, wider relations), work, the house ( any work we are both doing to our property), general news, ranting. It’s a about connecting not what we’re talking on. It’s really important to me these days.

    • With my dad, I have to kind of draw him out. I basically cross-examine him about his day, his week, his job, etc until something sparks and he gets going on a topic. With my mom, I don’t talk about anything – she talks at me the whole time. I wouldn’t suggest any of her topics for you really. Maybe the “what everyone else in the family is doing” one would work for you.

    • Almost married so right now really focused on my big fat stupid wedding (seriously.should.have.eloped.). But before that we talked about our various pets, recent home decorating projects, new recipes (we both like to cook and decorate), issues we are having with other people in our lives, etc. But I might be a little weird in that I still talk to my parents multiple times a day and I usually call my mom on my walk home from work just to say hi.

      • “But I might be a little weird in that I still talk to my parents multiple times a day and I usually call my mom on my walk home from work just to say hi.”

        SO glad I’m not the only one who does this (with my dad, though). Normally we exchange a few emails during the day, and then I almost always call him after I get home at night just to say hi.

    • MissJackson :

      I really think that there are two camps: those who talk to their parents super-frequently, and those who do not. I’m in the “do not” camp. I love my mother [um, and appreciate her even more after hearing some other corporette mom stories in other threads], but this is just not our communication style.

      I call with a Purpose: to discuss some upcoming event, to talk about big deal things. If we’ve gone weeks without a Purpose, I will sometimes call just to check in. As far as I can tell, this doesn’t bother my mom, so maybe it would be different if she was “fussing”. But I really don’t worry about it too much. My mom knows the important things in my life and vice versa. I really don’t feel any guilt over the fact that this is our communication style! It sounds like you have a good relationship with your parents — if it’s not broke… (although, if it bothers your parents, I can see why you’d want to change — but if that’s the plan make sure it’s a two-way street in terms of who is in charge of calling!)

      • LadyEnginerd :

        This is me! I really like the term ‘Purpose.’ My only problem is when I call with a Purpose (ie. ‘here’s how the job interview went’) and discuss at length with one parent, a few hours later the other parent calls and demands that I discuss that Purpose with them too! Arrrrr!!! Why can’t you compare notes?!

        On their end, they’ll call during the work day to chat. Of course, because I always call with a ‘Purpose,’ I always pick up the phone because I assume that if they’re calling during the work day, it must be an ‘Emergency Purpose’ and something is Very Important. I’m then left negotiating with my mother in my office about how I appreciate that they found a baby picture of me, and I’m glad she called and yes we haven’t spoken for a couple of weeks, but it really can wait for four hours until I am no longer in my open plan office.

        I really should set up a standing phone date with my parents. That way, they won’t feel left out if the other person is the lucky recipient of my call-with-a-Purpose :)

        • My husband has a long-standing weekly date to call his parents. Same time, every week. I used to joke about it, but it actually works out really well for them. Would never fly with my parents though.

    • Do you have an easier time with them in person than on the phone? If so, Skype is kind of nice – I’m not a phone person really and it makes conversations feel more like in person.

      Otherwise, let’s see – books/TV shows/movies that we’re reading or have seen (I registered their Kindles to my account so we can share, which is fun); vacation and weekend plans; we talk about our respective jobs; sometimes current events; oh, and they love to tell me about their dog – that is always good for several minutes of conversation.

    • My mom calls me at least once a day. We pretty much talk about anything and/or nothing at all. Today it was about matzo ball soup and what she should get her friend for a 60th bday. I think this is one of those things where it’s actually much easier if you talk more frequently (like going to the dentist!). Then it’s not like you’re reporting news, but can say something like, “oh my god, I just had the most delicious soup” or “my neighbor is so annoying…”

      • I agree – it is much easier for me to find topics of conversation with frequent, short, mundane calls. If I go more than couple of weeks without checking in, it feels like I need a Purpose, to steal MissJackson’s phrase, and it’s awkward. My immediate family (mom, dad and sis) are all fans of complaining about each other (my sis lives with them), so that’s always a fall back (not that I egg them on, or anything . . .).

    • Esquirette :

      I relocated after college (a long time ago) far away from my family and only visit about 1-2 times per year at most. The phone is the only way I keep a connection with my parents, who are getting much older now. My mom is a total rambler — she will talk about anything for a very long time. My dad is much quieter — he wants to talk but doesn’t ramble. So we touch on the weather, I ask about what they’ve been doing at the house, what they did for the weekend, how work was (for my mom), how the siblings or other family are, anything going on at home that I know of — occassionally politics or taxes or some other big thing that’s hit the news. I also talk to them about work — seeing is that’s all I seem to do, it’s an obvious topic. I’m actually greatful to have them to talk to because, though my life as a lawyer is outside the realm of their experience, they always listen, are interested, and feel like I care because I’m talking to them about it. I find this amusing because this is nothing like the relationship I had with them before I left home. I think I actually have more in depth, adult conversations with my parents than either of my siblings who live near them because I just talk to them about everything. The only caveat is that I am careful not to do too much husband bashing — my mom is fiercely loyal and will take my side while getting annoyed at my husband (even if I’m right, of course), and my dad I think doesn’t think it’s his place to hear that kind of thing.

      Random request for help: I just got my parents set up with an iPad (which they love!) and have been doing Skype video chat with them. I have Skype on my iPhone and my PC. On our last call, the audio was fine and I could see them and could see myself but they couldn’t see me or themselves. I have Googled the heck out of this, and I can’t figure out what was wrong. They are very un-techie, and I don’t have an iPad so I’m guessing at what to do. Anybody experience this and, more importantly, know how to fix it? I’m trying to get them to set up things so we can Facetime chat but, until then, Skype it is.

    • My mom and I complain about our jobs. Even when they’re going well (which is almost never for her, fairly often for me but not right now), there’s something to complain about that. Other than that, I don’t know, we just ramble.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      This may sound weird, but Facebook helps me with this. My parents (and grandmother) joined facebook a few years ago, and after a sitdown with each of them explaining that I will not censor myself for them, I accepted their friend requests. In a way, it allows us to feel like we have some idea of what is going on in each others lives, but we don’t have to spend as much time on the phone. I still talk to my dad about once every other week for 20 minutes or so. We mostly catch up on things going on in our lives. My parents typically have a lot going on, so he always has some event or trip coming up. That probably makes it easier. I know that my grandmother would like to speak more often, but facebook at least allows me to stay in some contact with her.

      • MissJackson :

        I agree with this! Facebook was a complete miracle for my dad and me. He was never fond of talking on the phone, but we were able to keep in great touch on facebook. He commented on my pictures/status/whatever frequently. He would post links to articles and we’d discuss in the comments. We’d simultaneously chear our sports teams on, or lament a loss together. It was really amazing, because it definitely kept us in closer touch than we ever had been before. If you happen to have a techie-nerd/phone adverse parent, I cannot recommend this approach enough!

    • Anonymous :

      I am also married with no kids and little drama. I talk to my mom about once a week, more if there is something big to talk about. We usually talk on my way home from work. If there’s no obvious Big Event to discuss, we talk about what we did over the weekend or other fun things going on, other people in the family or news from my network of childhood friends, occasionally about recipes or something like that. There are times when we just say, “Nothing new here. We’ve been working a lot, throwing dinner together, and going to bed,” and that’s ok with us too.

      • I have a lot of guilt because my conversations with my mom are pretty much always like your last sentence. My dad passed away a few years ago and my mom’s retired, so I wish I could provide more interesting news/updates/information and find time to call more than once a week. But working in Biglaw makes for a pretty boring personal life (at least for me).

        Agree with the poster above that regular emails do seem to help. I hate for her to be lonely, but there’s only so much I can do with my work demands and being so far away.

    • I talk to my mom once a week. This has remained the same whether I live 30 minutes away or 24 hour hours away by plane. We just talk about what happened during the week. Some weeks are more exciting than other. My dad is minimalist when talking generally and he will only call if he has some technical issue or gets stuck on a video game he knows I’ve already played. In recent conversation he wanted to know what the bird game was, so it lasted all of 2 words.

    • I talk to my parents about once a week, sometimes more often. I talk to them about the news from where I live, the news from home, things that are going on with people in their church and other family friends I grew up with, things we have in common (books, sports, movies, cooking, wine, etc.), their work, my work, news from the extended family, pets, etc.

    • EmpLawyer :

      We talk about our jobs, politics, our house, their house, other relatives, our pets, local sports teams… All sorts of things. Now, to be honest, my mom and I chat via text on and off in a given week, but we typically only speak with any of our parents once a week or less..

    • I get along with my dad so well that I talk to him pretty much every day, and a half hour is a short conversation. We talk about our days – neither one of us is married/partnered, so we wouldn’t have anyone else to yammer to about the day’s woes and little joys. He also often likes to give me the blow-by-blow of whatever he’s watching on TV. I like to tell him about any shopping I’ve done and my cats. We often email each other news articles or other interesting stuff on the internet, so we discuss those. I rant about politics, he rants about the collapse of our baseball team. Etc. Basically, we’re just interested in the same stuff, and so we talk about it for ages. If I don’t talk to him it feels like the day’s not complete.

    • Working, married, no kids, relatively drama-free (happily) here . . . I’m one of the “talk to my parents nearly every day” people. If we don’t talk on a particular day we’ll at least have an email exchange back and forth. Some of the topics from our most recent conversations:
      * The progress of their bathroom remodel;
      * The Yankees (and the wild card race and the playoffs generally — my mom and my DH are both huge fans and I’ve become one too, through osmosis);
      * My brother and his fiance — now wife — and what we know of their ideas and plans for their reception/party later in the year (I call a lot more often than he does);
      * Upcoming travel for them and us — plane tickets purchased, etc. — and also brainstorming new trips, and reiminiscing about past trips;
      * Food! — we all love to eat;
      * Close and distant relatives and their health;
      * A book I read recently that I really liked — my mom’s now reserved it at her library;
      * Weight Watchers progress (see related food point above) — they are both on maintenance and it’s been nice to hear about their strategies and successes and compare notes;
      * A family friend’s child’s wedding that they went to (I know both the friend and the child and some other guests reasonably well but was not invited and did not expect to be);

      In a normal week when we weren’t just on vacation we’d also usually talk about my how my work life is going and sometimes about my husband’s work life. He’s more a once-a-week with his parents, and once every three or four calls I’ll get on the phone with them too, to say hello and catch up.

    • Well, it definitely helps to have some hobbies in common. I mainly talk to my Mom about quilting and knitting, and quilt shows, and yarn shops, etc. With my Dad it’s a bit more difficult. He likes politics, but I leave that to Mr. gov anon, since, despite being a lawyer, I’m not big on confrontation. Football season and baseball season mean we can talk about the team.

    • I moved far away from home at 18, and although I consider us a close family and really like my parents – I now only see them a few times a year so the phone is the only option most of the time. As a few other people have said – talking with my mom is rarely an issue, but dad can be hard to engage. My solution – which has worked really well – is , I got each of my parents a subscription to a magazine I also take (Vanity Fair for mom, Economist for dad) – they love them, it’s an instant Christmas gift checked off the list and then – when there is a lull in conversation, I can say – hey – did you see the article about X this week? It has worked so well my DAD actually CALLS ME sometimes to ask my opinion on something in the Economist. (on the down side my mom now thinks fake fur vests are cool and bought one – thanks VF) I even got my brother in the mix when I found out he was stealing the old Economists from my dad so now everyone gets a magazine from me!

    • I talk to my dad about pretty much everything, including work, politics, the weather, relationships. I cannot talk to my mom about work at all–she just does not get it and does not try to and she thinks it is morally wrong/upsetting that I am a criminal defense attorney. But I do talk to her about family gossip, shopping, stuff around the house, her work (A LOT–I could tell you everything about all of her co-workers, lol).

      I do feel like I have a better relationship with both parents now that I am an adult and on my own. I could never in a million years live with my mom again, though!

  8. Sydney Bristow :

    I have a bit of an odd question today. Would any of you purchase a living social deal for a dental exam and cleaning? I haven’t had insurance in a long time and honestly haven’t been to the dentist in a few years. Horrible, I know! The deal today is for an exam with cleaning and x-rays plus 20% off future services for $59. It is with NYC Dental Associates, so if anyone has any specific knowledge of that practice, that would be great too. I’m just wondering if it is crazy to buy something like this from a site like living social or groupon.

    • Esquirette :

      I noticed one of these deals the other day and thought it was a great option for people without dental insurance. If you have an Angie’s list account (or something similar), you could see if there are reviews for that dental practice. If you feel comfortable with the practice, I’d go for it.

    • I bought a dental cleaning from one of those deal sites just recently. Before I bought it, I looked at my state’s dental board site to make sure there was no discipline action against her, and I looked on Yelp. Both were okay. The cleaning was fine, but there was a strong sales pitch for whitening and botox.

      • Dentists can give botox? I never knew that! (Not that I have any interest [yet?], just never even thought that could be/would be).

        • AnonInfinity :

          That is freaky to me. Though I suppose a dentist would know as much as or more about facial muscles and nerves than my GYN, who also does it.

    • I bought my sister a dental groupon last year and she loved the office, somewhere in Flushing. She loved that place so much that I’m considering going there myself.

    • I totally did, after researching that dentist on Yelp and other rating sites. Haven’t redeemed it yet, crossing fingers!

    • another anon :

      I dunno, I am pretty picky about dentists, and have had enough bad experiences with them, that I would never go to someone who has to drum up business like this. I would get a recommendation from a friend.

      If you do decide to do it, I would be cautious about it, and if they tell you something that seems fishy, get a second opinion. I once had a dentist tell me that I had something like 12 cavities, but they were “the kind of cavities that don’t show up on an x-ray.” Okay…. He wanted to “fill” them all, and charge me over $1000 for it. This was when I was in grad school, so when I went back to my hometown I went to my family dentist that my family has been going to for years, and he said everything looked fine. Ten years later, I still have never had a cavity. So there are definitely shady dentists out there looking to make an easy buck.

    • My sister did, got a great deal, and loved the dentist. She had recently moved and didn’t have a regular dentist yet, so it worked out well for her.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      Thanks all. The place seems to be 50/50 on Yelp. There are some super bad reviews and some good ones. I’ll check to see if there have been complaints with the dental board as well. If there aren’t, I’ll probably get it because I could seriously use an exam and cleaning. Whitening and botox (!?!?) are something I’ll be able to resist because that is the least of my concerns right now.

    • I did this for a whitening on Groupon, and I also did one for a cleaning and x-ray. The whitening people were great, but they really wanted me to become a regular dental patient. Like super-strong sell. I was not into it and brushed them off.

      The dentist did a fine cleaning and x-ray, but then, magically, he found a cavity that needed filling. For some people, this would not be cause for alarm, but I was ~29 at the time and had never had a cavity (and have not had since, by the by). Two second opinions later, and I did have my first cavity–but in a totally different tooth. The other 2 dentists agreed that the first one was a hack. So…buyer beware.

      I got good service with both groupon dental experiences, but I also got a hard sell for more too.

    • I did it in the SF Bay Area and it was great. I felt like a bit of a jerk since I was moving abroad and knew I wouldn’t be back but it was awesome since I didn’t have dental insurance.

  9. I just bought a suit in a similar pattern at the Limited. http://www.thelimited.com/detail/gathered-sleeve-jacket/2519392
    It’s not a suit that will last my years but will tide me over while I drop the few pounds I’ve picked up recently. Between the buy one get one free promotion and coupons, I paid about $100 for the jacket, skirt and pants.

    • I’ve had my eye on that one for a while, and the only reason I won’t get it is because I hate the whole “outerwear with 3/4 length sleeves” thing. (It’s not so much that it looks bad, but that it’s impractical for cold-natured, overzealously air-conditioned office me). FWIW, I have several suits from the Limited that have lasted me well for several years. I love how you can almost always get them with both a skirt and pants.

    • Sadly, I need a suit for the same purpose. I totally forgot the limited makes suits (or exists). Thanks! I may order the navy two button.

      PS: I really like the suit of the week. Nice choice. Interesting, but not too “too.”

  10. AnonInfinity :

    Does anyone have advice for how to help a friend who is going through a divorce?

    Of course I’m there for her to talk, cry, or whatever. I’m wondering what other concrete things I can do for her (if anything). The whole thing took her by surprise, and she’s really hurting.

    • When things get tough, I benefit from distraction. Assuming your friend does too, why not spend time with her, take her to silly movies, out to dinner, etc.

    • A friend got divorced and her closest friend (a mutual friend) took her to the court house, helped her pack, gave her a temp place to stay…

      I think going to the attorney’s office would be helpful if you can do that. Helping her sort thru some of the logistics.

    • Been There :

      The two most helpful things friends did with/for me when I found out my then-husband had been having an affair and I kicked him out were:

      1. Come with me to my OB-Gyn appointment, where I had to tell my MD that I needed to be tested. For everything.

      2. Help me pack his things and put them in the den for later “delivery.” I started meticulously folding each item. She grabbed a lawn and leaf bag and starting throwing. It helped.

      • Having been there recently these are the best two suggestions that have been made!! My friend apparently also put a few “surprises ” into the bag, for the monster to find later.

    • These are all great suggestions. One thought: what does she hate to do that’s required life maintenance, like cooking or mowing a lawn or cleaning? Meet some of those needs, so she can feel that someone is on her side and that she’s not alone in navigating through life.

    • One of the hardest things for me was being alone on weekend nights-my friends are almost all married with kids and.didn’t want to go out on weekends and if I went to dinner or a movie alone I felt like I was drowning in couples, which made me sad. Plus, if I didn’t have daytime plans, I ended up spending the whole day alone. So I bet an offer to hang out on a weekend night would be welcome.

      Holidays are also tough, esp if her family isn’t close.

      • Those are great suggestions. I moved for a job and although I’m never married instead of divorced, the socialization situation here in the Midwest is the same.

    • AnonInfinity :

      Thanks everyone — These are very helpful suggestions. I’ll definitely try them.

      It sucks seeing someone I care for so much hurting so badly.

    • Try to be as tactful as possible. I went through a divorce after a very short marriage when I was about 29 and my best friend (best best friend since we were 12) could not have disappointed me more. She was close to getting engaged herself and, I think, freaked out that if this was happening to me it could happen to her. Every time I saw her she asked me a neverending barrage of questions, none aimed at figuring out if I was ok, but more aimed at making sure this terrible thing would not happen to her. When did you know it was not going to work out? Did you know on your wedding day? She also seemed really interested in all the “salacious details” and talking crap about my soon-to-be ex rather than helping me get through a tough time. Maybe I was reading into things or misinterpreting her intention, but that is how I felt.

      She also made comment after comment that I found really hurtful. Now, my group of friends is a pretty frank, in your face, talk sh*t crowd, but she went over the line and joked about things that were really not funny to me at the time. When talking in a group of several women about having kids, I made some comment that anticipated having kids in the future, she said “well, it looks like you need to find a man before you start thinking about that,” or, my all-time favorite, patting my knee and saying “you can always adopt as a single mom.” I was 29. Please. Her wedding was a horrible weekend, with divorce comments coming at me left and right. “When [husband] and I went to get our wedding certificate from the courthouse, there was a box to check if you have been married before. Who does that??? Oh wait . . . I guess you would have to if you ever get married again.” At her birthday party, in front of several people I had just met for the first time, asking out of the blue, “Is your divorce finalized? Have you filed the papers? Why not?” Silence. Why would I want to discuss this at her party, in front of strangers. At a friend’s party, in front of many people, including me, “[Husband] and I talked about divorce and it just is not going to be an option for us. We made a promise to each other on our wedding day and we are going to honor that.”

      I really could go on and on. Am I bitter much?

      So i guess my point is . . . even if your friend is a kick-butt strong independent woman, and even if this was her decision, it is really crappy thing to go through you should treat her gently.

      My friend’s behavior has severly affected our relationship and I don’t feel close to her or trust her much any more. Its really sad. I would say I miss her but this all made me conclude that she has really changed.

      • You have got one h*ll of a frenemy. Those comments from your friend are crazy! I am so sorry you had to go through that crap.

      • AnonInfinity :

        Oh wow. I was going to ask if there are things I should be sure not to say (in the “I thought this would be kind, but it could be perceived differently” vein). Definitely wouldn’t think anyone would say any of that stuff to a friend. I am glad you got through such a hard time AND her destructive comments. Yuck.

      • MaggieLizer :

        It sounds like your friend had some serious moral objections to divorce and somehow felt personally betrayed that you, someone she cared about, would do such a (in her eyes) horrible immoral thing. Newlyweds and new parents often go through this – they think they know everything about everything and they’re going to be perfect spouses/parents. After she and hubby get in their first real argument, she’ll probably be less righteous and more herself.

        Of course that doesn’t justify her actions and she shouldn’t disrespect or judge you for not living up to her ideals/morals that you don’t necessarily share. If you want to revive the friendship – and it’s totally understandable if you don’t – you might address how each has felt betrayed by the other and ask her to respect your decisions even if she doesn’t agree with them.

        • Thanks guys. It probably didnt help that her parents ot divorced when she was about 19 or 20 and I dont think she really dealt with it properly at the time.

          When did things get so complicated?

  11. Boss Tweed :

    I just got a great tweed skirt, but feel very stuffy wearing it. It’s a very dark navy with black, cream, and light pink/lilac colors. Obviously black or navy would work, but it seems a bit boring. I feel too stuffy pairing it with pink/lilac or cream. For lack of ideas, last week, I wore it with black turtleneck, black tights, and black suede pumps. I think when it gets colder, I am going to pair it with black riding boots and hopefully that will “hip” it up a tad. Can you brilliant, stylish ladies think of some other ways for me to wear this without feeling like a Jr. League president? FWIW, I am 30 y.o. and not the twinset type.

    • silk blouse, tons of necklaces, kick-a** boots.

    • Darker shades of pink and purple? You don’t need to exactly match them.

    • I have some brown tweed pants that I usually wear with a belted sweater in one of several colors. If you can do belts, you can add a fun color (not necessarily matching), of if not you can get that same pop with a fun necklace. I have one patent belt I pair with almost everything- it was like a $2 purchase and it really makes boring outfits more interesting.

    • Anonymous :

      fushia, deep purple pale grey or petrol blue if you like solids?

      Or a silk, patterned blouse? Something from All Saints might add a ‘hip’ note if that’s your style?

  12. I absolutely love the shirt that is featured under the suit top. Fall colors like that look great on me and I look good in cowl/draped necklines. Pricey though for my budget.

    • If it is the classiques silk sleeveless top, I have it in a deep purple and LOVE it. I consistently get compliments on it and it’s a joy to wear. It has a little weight in the center of the cowl so it always drapes right.

      I got it at anniversary sale prices, but it is such a gorgeous shirt that I would have thought it a good deal at full price.

      I have a suit in similar fabric to this by CE that I love. I’m not a huge skirt wearer, so I don’t wear that piece very much, but the jacket and pants are in regular rotation. They read as a very neutral charcoal and are flattering to my curvy bottom. I love it! It’s interesting, but also pretty classic, so you can wear it a ton.

  13. Amelia Bedelia :

    Have you thought about a dark purple or rich fushia with it? it would kind of pick up the thread of pink or lilac without being too “matchy matchy”
    also, I really like a tweed skirt with a leather jacket. definitely adds a hip edge to it. you can pair it with a simple cream/lilac blouse and then add the leather jacket.

  14. AccountingNerd :

    Threadjack! What do you wear under white shirts? Why can’t I find a non-sheer white button-down shirt? Ok, so I went to Banana Republic to look at their buttond-down shirts, and the white was a little sheer. You could see the outline of the white tank top I was wearing and my bra straps. Isn’t this unprofessional?

    • A nude, full-coverage bra. If I can see that in any kind of distracting way (especially from the front–I’m less concerned about the back since presumably I’ll have a suit jacket on when it really matters), the shirt’s too sheer for work.

    • I agree with Former 3L, that if I can’t get away with just a nude and full coverage bra, it’s too sheer and I pass. (I tried, and passed on, that same BR shirt, I think. Though I did find a white with pinstripes that worked.) That said, I haven’t found a white shirt that passes this test in at least a few years. It seems like everything’s far to sheer and thin right now. So, I’ve been wondering if I should invest in a nude cami.

      • Try Lands’ End – their white cotton shirts are not sheer, and they come in regular AND petite (AND tall maybe). Eddie Bauer also has nice white cotton shirts, and their catalogue/website also sells them in Tall.

    • Try wearing a nude cami underneath. I usually wear camis under button down shirts to avoid wardrobe malfunctions anyway. That being said, Brooks Brothers white shirts are not sheer and you can often find them at the same price point as Banana Republic.

    • Nude camis (definitely not white!) are great for adding more coverage. That said, I steer clear of anything too sheer for work. Or at all.

  15. Interesting hem. Cheap-looking fabric.

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