Coffee Break: Pola Peep Toe Heel

Peep Toe Heel: Salvatore Ferragamo PolaFerragamo is always a favorite among readers when we talk about comfortable heels — and Zappos seems to be having a secret(ish) sale on select styles. This darkish taupe is 10% off, which normally I would snub my nose at, but will welcome at this price range. (The other three colors the shoe comes in — red, black, and light beige — are all full price still at Zappos and Nordstrom. Another Ferragamo shoe on sale at Zappos: this lower-heeled pump, in beige or black.) The height is perfect for work, and I like the bit of bling. The shoes are $625 (were $695). Salvatore Ferragamo Pola


N.B. Peep toes may not be appropriate at every office — know yours!

Coffee Break: Panama Leather Shoulder Tote

black leather work toteOoooh: nice. Sure, sure, I mostly like it because of that blue lining — but it’s a nice looking, lightweight bag. (It actually reminds me of a slightly more fancy version of Everlane’s leather tote, which is also very nice but definitely very plain.) The pictured bag has a flat base, and I like that the exterior zippered pocket is large enough for most tablets. It’s $345 at Nordstrom, available in black and light brown. Rebecca Minkoff ‘Panama’ Leather Shoulder Tote

Here’s a lower-priced tote.

(Fun question: Do you prefer leather or nylon for work totes and interview totes? Why? We’re gearing up for a Hunt on totes for work so I thought I’d ask…)


Coffee Break: ‘Paradise’ Croc Embossed Suede & Leather Satchel

Blue & Black Handbag: AllSaints 'Paradise' Croc Embossed Suede & Leather SatchelI don’t know which I’m more excited about: to see shoulder bags coming back in style, or to realize that Nordstrom carries the brand AllSaints, at least as far as bags are concerned. This boxy black/blue shoulder bag looks perfect — functional but interesting, and the tighter shoulder strap makes it look just a bit more fresh. It’s $278 at Nordstrom. AllSaints ‘Paradise’ Croc Embossed Suede & Leather Satchel

Here’s a lower-priced option on clearance.


Coffee Break: Quilted Ballet Flats

Round Toe Ribbon Flat: Paul Mayer Quilted Ballet Flats We’ve mentioned these simple ballet flats before in round-ups, but I don’t think they’ve ever had their own Coffee Break. Not only did several readers call out these Paul Mayer flats in our last discussion on comfortable ballet flats, but the shoes are bestsellers at Bloomingdale’s, where they have nothing but positive reviews. For $225, that’s pretty great! They’re available in sizes 5.5-9, in lots of different colors and configurations at Bloomingdale’s. Paul Mayer Quilted Ballet Flats

Here’s a lower-priced option (sizes 4-11.5) and another in five (!) widths (sizes 4-13).


Coffee Break: Acqua di Parmi

acqua di parmaI’m curious, ladies — what are your favorite summer scents? I took a break from wearing perfume years ago when my sons were babies, but I’m starting to get into scents again, and am on the hunt. In years past, my summer scent was the men’s cologne, Acqua di Parma; Nordstrom notes that it is “a composition born from sunny Sicilian fruits and a harmonious blend of floral essences such as lavender and damask rose that merge with woody notes of vetiver, sandalwood and patchouli.” (Not surprising, I guess, considering vetiver and sandalwood are two of my favorite scents — I definitely tend to prefer darker, deeper notes.) It’s $105-$173 at Nordstrom. Acqua di Parma ‘Colonia’ Eau de Cologne Natural Spray

Psst: Know your office (and your coworkers) — many readers have noted in the past that they haaaaate working with people wearing heavy perfume


Psst: White House | Black Market has some great sales going on right now — take an extra 40% off already reduced prices with code 62787.

Coffee Break: ‘Friar’ Shopper

Gray Shoulder Bag: Hobo 'Friar' Shopper Hobo is a solid brand for affordable, quality leather. They have a very popular, long-running bestseller, the Lauren wallet, but today I’m featuring this shoulder bag, the Friar. Note that the leather has a soft, distressed look to it, which can be great, but some colors may veer a little too far into the “ooh, she needs a new bag” territory, at least for a work environment. I like this gray “granite” color the best, which Nordstrom, Zappos, and Amazon all have for $238. Hobo ‘Friar’ Shopper

P.S. A few shopping alerts for you: Ann Taylor’s having a “50% off everything” sale (including sale items), 6PM is having its “biggest sale ever” (with free shipping today only) — TONS of Coach shoes — and Nordstrom Rack is having its Alexis Bittar sale event now.