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Deal Alert: The Best Shoes For Work Still Left in the Nordstrom Winter Clearance Sale!

Winter #NSale 2017: Shoes EditionLadies — The Nordstrom Winter Clearance Sale is still on through 2/26! I did our big workwear roundup from the Winter #Nsale last Thursday — but I thought I’d take a look at what’s left in the sale at this point. Click this link to see all of the previous things we’ve featured for Coffee Breaks and Workwear Reports that are now in the sale — TONS of stuff we’ve previously featured is on sale, including a ton of shoes from our Workwear Hall of Fame (the best-selling, top-rated styles that have been around for EONS).

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Help! My Assistant Talks Too Much

Help! My Assistant Talks Too Much!We’ve talked about the chatty boss before, but Reader N has a slightly different question: how to deal when your assistant talks too much? Reader N wonders what she can say to discourage her chatty assistant:

What are some ways to end a conversation with people at work that work for you? I have a new assistant, who is fantastic at the job! But she is VERY long winded for the smallest things (e..g, dropping off a file) & ends up on very long tangents completely unrelated to work. I understand that part of her need to chat with me / be friendly with me has to do with me being the boss,but need to be able to get work done during the day. I want to keep things friendly as she is helpful.

We haven’t talked about this problem in far too long — I still remember a fellow lawyer who used to “pop in” my office for what became two hour gabfests in the middle of the day. (Funnily enough I haven’t heard from her since we stopped working together.) Here, the added dynamic of the chatty coworker being your subordinate makes things a bit more complicated from an etiquette standpoint, but not unworkable.  Obviously, you can just tell her sternly to “please let me do my work” or actually sit her down for some bigger conversation about her talkativeness being disruptive — and because you’re the boss, the direct approach is absolutely fine. Readers in our discussion of chatty coworkers suggested saying things such as “hey, now isn’t a good time to chat, but I’ll stop by later” — but if you don’t actually ever want to hear her 45 minute theory about Westworld, that may not work either. (Or, Westworld aside, maybe you just prefer to keep a healthy distance and not be friends with your subordinates.)  But: of course you still want to be friendly and have a good working relationship.  This may take us back to our discussion of whether women bosses should aim for being liked or respected, but here are my top tips for solving the problem of when an assistant talks too much in a non-direct, friendly way:

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Thursday’s Workwear Report: Flounced-Sleeve Ponte Sheath Dress

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

This looks like a great basic dress for work. I like the wide neckline, the substantial structure to the dress, and the hidden back zip, as well as the fact that it comes in three size ranges: regular (2-20), petite (2P-16P), and plus (12W-24W). It also has 40+ reviews with an average of 4.3 out of 5. The dress is available in indigo, lapis, and black (although the black will ship “on or before 3/17”) — and note that it’s labeled “dry clean” and not “dry clean only.” Originally $129, it’s on sale for $96, and you can take off an additional 25% during Talbots’ Spring Style Event. Flounced-Sleeve Ponte Sheath Dress

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Suit of the Week: Tahari

For 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.

I mostly like the pretty dusky blue ponte dress here, but I could see the blazer getting a ton of wear, as well — and even better, both pieces are on sale right now at Bloomingdale’s, Lord & Taylor, and Amazon. (There’s a matching skirt as well, but I can’t seem to find a pair of pants.) The jacket is priced $96-$103, and the dress is priced $68-$73; most places seem to have a wide range of sizes 2-16.

This plus-size suit in a dusky blue/black looks lovely.

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Jewelry for the Office: Fashion or Fine?

jewelry for the office: fashion or fine? Jewelry for the office: fashion or fine? Is fashion jewelry or fine jewelry more appropriate for the workplace — or is it a know your office situation? Is there such a thing as everyday fine jewelry, other than an engagement ring? Does price and taste enter into it? (Bonus question for the bottom of the post, too: would you wear the pictured necklace to work? Would your answer change if you thought it cost more or less than your home?) Here’s Reader A’s question:

I’m an avid reader of your blog and I have a question for you. :) I read your 2012 jewelry post and was wondering if you had advice on fashion vs fine jewelry in the office. I work in a very casual office (uggs are not out of place even on senior management) but the executives tend to dress sharp and polished. However, I’ve never seen anyone wear pearls or gemstones outside of their wedding rings. Are fine jewelry styles only appropriate in formal offices?

Very interesting question. I do suspect this is a “know your office” situation, but I’m very curious to hear from the readers because I’d love to know which kind of jewelry you prefer to wear to the office, fashion or fine.  First, some definitions for purposes of discussion today…

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Wednesday’s Workwear Report: Cashmere Faux-Wrap Sweater

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

The cashmere sales have begun (including this old favorite gray cardigan), which is great if you’re a fan of cashmere sweaters for work (for when it’s actually cold outside, not this unseasonably warm weather we’re having!). Neiman Marcus has had some reader-favorite cashmere styles in the past, and this surplice faux-wrap sweater is a long-standing stalwart at NM. It’s there every season in new colors, and it looks great if you want a very classy but fashionable look. It’s currently available in seven colors in sizes S-XL, and in plus sizes as well, for $137 (from $275). Cashmere Faux-Wrap Sweater

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