Bargain Friday’s TPS Report: Banana Republic’s Long-Sleeve Shirred Top

Our daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices. We begin the week in splurge mode, with our most expensive suggestions, and wind our way to Friday, where a less expensive item of clothing might be just what you need to make it to the weekend.

Banana Republic’s Long-Sleeve Shirred TopThis is a fine basic top for work: slightly detailed but otherwise unadorned. It’s great by itself over interesting pants or a skirt (perhaps with a brooch or an opera-length necklace), as well as beneath a cardigan or jacket. It’s also a great price, as it’s currently on sale at Banana Republic for $14.99 (was $34). (Last we checked, there were lots of sizes available in black, turquoise, and orange, and only limited sizes left in the other colors.) Women: Long-sleeve shirred top – Black

Reader Mailbag: Where to get suits for short women?

petite suits2016 Update: Check out our latest discussion on the best petite suits.

We’ve had several requests from readers on where to get great suits if you’re a petite woman. We addressed this a bit last summer, when we advised a reader how to shop for suits if you’re not in the “normal” sizes of 4-12. But we thought we’d recap, as it’s an important topic and we have more readers now, who will hopefully weigh in with more advice. From the very petite friends we’ve polled:

  • Theory is reportedly amazing (which makes sense to this author, as my normal size of 4 or 6 becomes a <cough> 10 in Theory — in other words, size 0 will be legitimately teeny, and size 00 practically minuscule.). The Max C pant is a “cult” item. [Read more…]

Thursday’s TPS Report: Textured Sweater Blazer

Our daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices. We begin the week in splurge mode, with our most expensive suggestions, and wind our way to Friday, where a less expensive item of clothing might be just what you need to make it to the weekend.

WHBM Textured Sweater BlazerWe like this textured cotton sweater blazer from White House|Black Market.  It’s springlike and sophisticated, but at the same time friendly and comfortable-looking.  We’d wear it over shift dresses — navy ones, preferably — in the spring and summer, and with winter white pants in the fall and into the winter.  Available from White House|Black Market for $98.  Textured Sweater Blazer

Suit of the Week

We’re loving this vintage-inspired skirt suit from Rebecca Taylor.  All the little details make it so gorgeous and interesting:  the notched collar, the puffed sleeves, the pickstitch detailing, the backpleat on the jacket, and we love, love the defined waist.  The fabric flower/boutonniere is actually our least favorite part, if only because you have to treat it as an accessory and therefore can’t accessorize that much more once you’ve got it on — we’d say earrings or necklace and you’re good to go.  The jacket is available at Nordstrom for $365 (Rebecca Taylor ‘Coco’ Jacket) and the matching skirt (Rebecca Taylor Slim Skirt), which also has a backpleat, is $220.

Rebecca Taylor ‘Coco’ Jacket Rebecca Taylor Slim Skirt

Wednesday’s TPS Report: Rachel Mara Short Sleeve Top in Cream

Our daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices. We begin the week in splurge mode, with our most expensive suggestions, and wind our way to Friday, where a less expensive item of clothing might be just what you need to make it to the weekend.

Rachel Mara Short Sleeve Top in CreamYou have to click on this top and get in close to look at the details — it’s a cream silk blouse with delicate embroidery all over the neckline and sleeves. Absolutely gorgeous and really unique; we don’t think we’ve ever seen anything quite like it. We’d wear it with brown or navy trousers — possibly even pinstriped ones, to mix the embroidery print and the pinstripe print in a subtle way — or perhaps a black pencil skirt. The best part? It’s now on sale at RevolveClothing.com for $102 (was $253). Rachel Mara Short Sleeve Top in Cream

Poll: How High is Too High?

Naturalizer Marleigh ShoeOur readers are thinking along similar lines, because a second reader wrote in to wonder if there is a limit on how high a shoe can be before it’s unacceptable for work.

I recently bought some shoes, including these (pictured) (3″ black patent with tweed edging–for $30, I figured why not). When I tried them on, my husband remarked that they were “awfully tall,” and after initially thinking they would be a nice edition to my shoe collection, I began to wonder if they were not appropriate. So I guess my question is: is there a heel height cutoff, past which one should not go? I’m of average height (5’6″), and dress pretty conservatively at work (suits, pearls, the whole thing). I was planning on wearing these heels with pantsuits primarily to minimize the shiny tall heels aspect, but my husband’s comment has me wondering if they are too much for even the plainest black suit. Is there consensus on this? Does it matter on other factors (such as how tall you are to begin with)?

Above: Naturalizer Marleigh Shoe, now on sale for $30 at Naturalizer.com. [Read more…]

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