Fun But Professional Patterns and Colors

Fun but Professional Patterns and Colors | CorporetteCan fun colors and patterns ever be professional? Reader S wonders:

The only black piece of clothing I have is one blazer and I don’t have a single white thing. You could find me in a floral skirts with striped tops, long bright dresses, and when I occasionally wear jeans, I always pair them with shirts and blazers. My favorite patterns are stripes and florals, favorite colors are purple, red, orange. Can this ever be professional? I feel very uncomfortable in black and would hate to give up my favorite pieces. The field where I hope to find a job is business causal.

Great question, S! We’ve talked about how to start wearing prints, as well as how to mix prints — but not in a long while (other than this brief mention in our post on how to shop your closet and Play Clothes). So let’s talk about it. First: I don’t think there is anything inherently unprofessional about prints, colors, and patterns — indeed, some of the most adventurous dressers, who mixed prints and patterns in the boldest ways, are some of the male partners I knew at my old law firm.  The easy advice here is that it’s very, very easy to throw on a solid cardigan or blazer that picks up one of the colors in your print, throw it on with a neutral trouser or skirt, and go to work.  But let’s have a bit more fun with it…

Fun but Professional Patterns and Colors | Corporette

Layer multiple patterns and anchor them with a solid piece, either in a neutral (black or white) or a color from one of the prints. (Check out our new Professional Prints board on Pinterest to see the pictures bigger, and click through for the sources.)

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Coffee Break: Tie Stripe Scarf

Brooks Brothers Tie Stripe ScarfBrooks Brothers’ Friends & Family sale is on, and ends tonight! I always like the scarf and accessory selections there, so I’m drooling over these tie stripe oblong scarf — it seems fun in a “borrowed from the boys” kind of way. It was $98, then marked to $68, and it comes down to $51ish with code FF25. Brooks Brothers Tie Stripe Scarf

Deal Alert: Nordstrom’s Secret Sale (?!)

Nordstrom secret saleNordstrom is not usually one to have a secret sale, but not only is there no big announcement on the home page, I can’t even find a good link to send you guys to the entire collection of sale stuff. Yet, I noticed a ton of great workwear that has just hit 60% off (thank you, Shop it To Me newsletter), and thought I’d round up a few…

My best tip for the sale: if there’s a brand you love that I haven’t already mentioned, do a search on it, then filter by “Sale” — for some reason it doesn’t put the largest amount of sale stuff first (e.g., 33% stuff may be filtered before 60% stuff), but it does put all of the markdowns stuff ahead of the full-price stuff.

Readers, did you get anything at Nordstrom’s secret sale today? Any great pieces on sale not mentioned above?

Deal Alert: Ann Taylor Extra 70% Off Sale

Ann Taylor is having a flash sale, offering an extra 70% off sale items with FLASH70 … until midnight.  Tomorrow, it’s an extra 65% off until noon (code FLASH65), and then until midnight tomorrow, it’s an extra 60% off (code FLASH60). Tons of inventory, and only some of it is final sale.  Lots of sizes, too… happy shopping, ladies!

Deal Alert: Dillards Sale

dillards sale 2014Dillards is having one of their big clearance sales, with lots of good workwear brands on sale, including Antonio Melani (a sister brand to Tahari by ASL and T Tahari), Calvin Klein, MICHAEL Michael Kors, Ivy & Blu, Donna Morgan, Vince Camuto, and Catherine Catherine Malandrino. Tons of stuff under $50, including most of the dresses pictured below. Readers, what do you like to buy at Dillards?  (Here’s a fun random question: I kind of consider Dillards a “local” department store because I’ve shopped at it in Ohio (and I think it’s in the South too?) but doubt most New Yorkers have heard of it. Meanwhile, some New Yorkers are familiar with Century 21, whereas most people in other parts of the country think of that as a realty company.  Which are your favorite local/regional department stores?

Back to the Dillards sale… it includes a few Hall of Famers are on sale, including:

  • Karen Kane Faux-Wrap Dress with short sleeves, including one in a hieroglyphic print (was $108 now marked to $38) and one in a diamond print (was $128 now $46)

Pictured at top: I like this Tahari by ASL Bow Ponte Sheath Dress, available in pink and in black in sizes 2-16 — it was $128 now $46. A few other nice picks:

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Deal Alert: Kate Spade’s Surprise Sale

Gwendolyn DressKate Spade is having a surprise sale today, with prices up to 75% off.  There are a ton of great totes for work (as well as work dresses and jewelry) so I thought I’d round up a few of my favorites:

  • Pictured above: The Gwendolyn dress, available in coral and white — it was $398, now marked to $139; lots of sizes left.  Also check out the Peplum Dress, also $139, available in black and “alma green.” The Crepe Blazer also looks like a great deal — was $398, now $149.
  • The Gatsby Dot Huggies look like great small-but-blingy earrings for a workday — they’re $29 (were $78).

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    Pictured below:

    • Gold Coat Maryanne — an old Corporette favorite in black, cashew beige, and gulabi pink.  Was $478, now $199.
    • Streetcar Darya — was $1,295, now $299 (it’s haircalf with cowhide trim, and 14K gold plated hardware.)
    • Wellesley Fallon, available in black and red — was $478, now $179.
    • Spot Nylon Calista — what a fun laptop bag! It was $295, now $129.

 

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