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The Corporette Workwear Hall of Fame

corporette workwear hall of fameWelcome to The Corporette Workwear Hall of Fame! I started this blog in 2008 -- and I've been fascinated to see how, every so often, a company gets such a rave response to a dress, bag, or blazer that they keep producing the item, year after year.  There may be new colors or patterns, or slight adaptions like pockets or sleeves -- but in general it's the exact same product.  These classic, best-selling styles are exactly the pieces you want to use to build your work wardrobe.  We always mention the Hall of Famers in our biweekly Hunts (where we go on the Hunt for a classic workwear piece), but I thought it would be great to collect some of these heavy hitters into one easy place for readers to review the items.  Thus: the Corporette Workwear Hall of Fame was born.

Coffee Break – Asymmetrical Mini Letter Necklace

This post was originally written in November 2012, and updated in May 2016.
Asymmetrical Mini Letter Necklace- One LetterYou guise: I LOVE THIS NECKLACE. I ordered it a few weeks ago from Bauble Bar (I got a “G”) and was so, so thrilled about it that I’ve been wearing it everywhere. It’s such a far cry from my statement necklaces — it’s so delicate, and I love the way it nestles against my neck. I highly recommend. The necklace is $220, available in 14K gold or 14K white gold, and you get a pair of open heart studs free with any purchase with code MAYABRENNER at checkout. (If you’re not a member of Bauble Bar yet, click here for an invite.) You can get up to two letters on the chain through Bauble Bar; if you want three you have to go through the designer’s websiteAsymmetrical Mini Letter Necklace- One Letter

2016 Update: I still love these necklaces, so I’m going to add them to our Workwear Hall of Fame.  I have one in silver, one in gold, and one in rose gold, and wear one of them pretty much daily.  They’re delicate, interesting, and pretty.


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Weekend Open Thread

Valentino Patent Leather Rockstud Slingback PumpsSomething on your mind? Chat about it here.

I’m usually able to resist the allure of designer shoes… but my goodness these are gorgeous. Love that rocker vibe mixed with what looks like a pretty flattering design and a walkable 2.5″ heel. The one review on Saks is ebullient — the woman is so pleased with the blush version that she says she’s off to buy other colors. Impressive! But — for $895 I think I’d have to be happy with just one pair. Valentino Patent Leather Rockstud Slingback Pumps

2016 Update: These heels are now in our Workwear Hall of Fame — they’ve been around for years now, win amazing reviews, and keep coming back in new styles and colors.


Workwear Hall of Fame: ‘Jackie’ Belted Gabardine Sheath Dress

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

Black Halo 'Jackie' Belted Gabardine Sheath DressHappy New Year, ladies! I think it’s been ages since I featured a Black Halo dress on this site — even the Jackie, which has been around forever — but something about this lovely red dress is screaming my name. Love the long hem length, the wide waistband, and the asymmetrical neckline. It’s available in red, cobalt blue, and black at Nordstrom for $345. Black Halo ‘Jackie’ Belted Gabardine Sheath Dress

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2016 Update: This dress is now in our Workwear Hall of Fame! It’s been around forever and is reliably a great bet if you’re on the hunt for an interesting, stand-alone sheath dress. You can get it new from ShopBop or Saks, but if you’re on a budget, keep an eye on flash sale sites like Gilt and RueLaLa, which sometimes feature Black Halo. (Ooh: there’s even a jumpsuit version, should you work in a creative office or want an evening look.) Note that the neckline is a little low in the back if you’re sensitive about that area.

black halo jackie dress for work

Coffee Break – Karolina Strawberry Patent Heels

Kate Spade New York – Karolina (Strawberry Patent, Multi Stripe Stack Heel) – FootwearOK. Pink patent heels can be a bit much, even for me — but do you see the heels on these, ladies? Love the striped, stacked heels so much that I’d find a way to make pink work. They would be lovely with otherwise sedate colors — gray, navy, black, possibly even brown — and just think of the fun you’d have pairing these shoes with something like a simple black sheath dress. The shoe comes in two other colors, as well: a linen patent (with black and white stripes), as well as a navy patent (with navy and cream stripes). Love love love. It’s $298 at Zappos Couture. Kate Spade New York – Karolina (Strawberry Patent, Multi Stripe Stack Heel) – Footwear

2015 Update: This shoe is now in our Hall of Fame — it’s been out for years now! It’s always available in neutral colors, but it also comes in fun new colors almost every season, and it’s available in narrow and wide sizes.  You can sometimes find it on sale (as low as $135) at 6pm, Amazon, or Nordstrom.

comfortable heel for work


Workwear Hall of Fame: Longchamp Totes

Longchamp 'Le Pliage Large' Tote Bag Nordstrom has a number of great bags on sale right now, including the classic Longchamp ‘Le Pliage’ large tote bag.  Only fun colors are on sale, such as ocean (pictured), as well as citrine, lilac, rosalie, and white — but if you’re just lugging stuff to and from the office, a happy pop of color can be a nice pick-me-up. Was $145, now $97 at Nordstrom. Longchamp ‘Le Pliage Large’ Tote Bag

2015 Update: This bag is now in our Hall of Fame!  The brown-strapped Pliage (pictured) has continued to dominate offices for years — it comes in a zillion colors! — but if you prefer a more streamlined look, the Pliage Neo has straps that match the bag (in black as well as colors). Note that you can sometimes find Longchamp on sale during big Nordstrom sales.

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