Suit of the Week: Ann Taylor

womens suit tweedFor 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’m not quite sure why, but Ann Taylor seems to have a number of suiting separates available exclusively online — including this lovely little tweed number.  I like the notches in the collar, and the fitted silhouette; the light gray tweed also looks great.  The jacket (Geo Tweed Jacket) is $179, and the skirt (Geo Tweed Pencil Skirt) is $89. Both are available in regular, petite and tall sizes 00-18.

Psst: note that they’re also offering 60% off sale styles, at least for US residents.

-------Sponsored Links--------

(This more affordable gray tweed pantsuit in regular and plus sizes looks like another nice option.)

(L-all)

Comments

  1. Anonymous :

    I’ll be in NYC next week and am looking for a nice-ish dinner (maybe $30-50 per entree) for a group of seven. No vegetarians. We are a pretty adventurous group. Somewhere with a charming atmosphere. Reservations would be desirable. Probably not Asian because we’re doing a lot of that over the week. We’re pretty open to location; we’re staying in the UES but we can take a cab or the subway to wherever.

    • Tournesol in Long Island City. (It’s in Queens, but right on the other side of the river and easy to get to by cab or subway on the 7 line). Lovely French food, great atmosphere, easy to get in with or without reservations, and is actually quiet enough to hold a good conversation. The waiters are all French and laid back in the European style, so they won’t be stopping by the table every 5 minutes to bother you or drop the check and hint that it’s time to leave.

      • Sydney Bristow :

        That sounds great. I’ll have to check it out. My favorite French place is a crepe place in Williamsburg called Pates et Traditions that is also very laid back with French staff but it is tiny and can be hard to get a table. Plus, since I moved to Queens, it is much more difficult to get to via public transit.

        • wow, and likewise the name alone is enough to induce me to check out Pate et Traditions next time I find myself in Williamsburg – sounds great!

      • Love this place–can’t recommend enough. Had THE BEST brunch there last summer!

    • If you want charming, I love Orsay on 74th and Lexington. You can make reservations easily, it’s good for large groups, the food is always good, they have oysters and you’ll feel like you’re in Paris. Lots of French bistro classics so for the adventurous there will something interesting and for the less so, no shortage of classics.

    • I’ve always wanted to go to Lincoln Ristorante at Lincoln Center. Its Italian fine dining and the design of the building is amazing and super modern right near the /reviews are really good and in your price range.

      • *near the Lincoln Center of Performing Arts and New York City Ballet/Koch Theatre- I miss the edit feature!!

    • Anonymous :

      What about Public Restaurant? They have some odd things on the menu– venison and kangaroo, for example. Good atmosphere for a group, too.

    • My favorite non-vegetarian paradise in the entire world is Cannibal on E 29th between Park and Lex. Their schtick is upscale Belgian pub-style meat and beer.

      Also, when I googled them to look up the cross streets, their dinner menu said, “Come on, Eat a half of a Pigs Head, Dare Ya!” If that’s not adventurous I don’t know what is.

  2. oil in houston :

    My husband is now self-employed and we’re looking at the best way for him to save for his retirement. We’re both in our mid 30s. He was working abroad before so he doesn’t have a 401k or anything like that here.
    I’ve been doing some research and saw he can have a solo 401k, which we’ll do, but I also saw he can have an IRA, and from what I understand he won’t qualify for the Roth IRA as I make more than $135k. Are there other things available? Also, I’m a bit confused at to how to set them up and where, any pros and cons?
    Does anyone have experience with this kind of situation? what is the best way to proceed?
    thanks in advance!

    • My husband was in a similar situation. We set up a self-employed 401K. You can save the IRS max+ 25% of his income, which is awesome if you are making a lot of money and don’t need his income to live on. I am in big law and so his income to pay the bills wasn’t a concern. We set ours up with Fidelity – they gave us a free personal meeting to discuss his options, which is how we arrived at the self-employed 401K, so we didn’t have to pay a financial planner.

    • Hi there, Workable Wealth is a helpful resource, she does a great job, e.g., http://workablewealth.com/retirement-plans-for-entrepreneurs/

    • oil in houston :

      thank you ladies!

    • I may be missing something here, but your eligibility for Roth IRA contributions is based on your combined income, if you are filing jointly. So as long as your combined income is less than $193k, you (both) can still contribute, regardless of whether your individual income is over the individual limit.

  3. Sydney Bristow :

    Maybe it is just my monitor, but this looks like a suit made out of sweatshirt material. While that sounds comfortable, I can’t get that image out of my head.

  4. I have to get my dog neutered and while I realize this is totally good for him, I feel bad. He doesn’t mark or hump things and he’s not the least aggressive. Tell me I’m doing the right thing?

    • Sydney Bristow :

      You’re doing the right thing! You don’t want to take him to the dog park and accidentally wind up with future doggy grandchildren.

    • Bob Barker approves this.

    • It’s the right thing. Health benefits, less like to roam in search of lady friends, etc. It’s a pretty quick recovery too.

    • (Former) Clueless Summer :

      I think you will be surprised at how quick the recovery is and how quick he is back to his old self. My pup was sort of tired and sad the day we brought him home and then woke up the next morning his old self. Dogs recover insanely quickly.

      Plus, yes, as others have said, there are health benefits to neutering!

    • Wildkitten :

      Absolutely the right thing to do. And he’ll be totally fine/even better, so don’t feel remotely guilty.

    • Anonymous :

      It is the right thing to do, but how old is your dog? There are growing concerns about effects of neutering too young (not about neutering generally). A lot of rescues/shelters have strict policies, so you don’t really get to argue with that. But I wish I had waited a little longer for my boy.

      • My puppy is now over a year, we specifically wanted to wait till he was a year before doing it for the same reason. And I know there are health benefits but he’s also so happy and sweet that it feels hard to justify in the abstract now. Also, as horrible as this sounds the idea of puppy grandchildren doesn’t strike me as the worst thing in the world – he is so awesome, he’d have the awesomest puppies (joke, mostly. I know there are too many unwanted dogs and cats out there).

        Anyway, thanks everyone. Maybe I just need to spend more time reading about the health benefits.

        • Studies have also proven that neutered dogs live longer… which is great since he will be around longer with you!!!

        • As the board member of a nonprofit which has recently taken over the local shelter, believe me, neutering is best. Even if you find home for puppies, each one of those can have puppies, and their puppies more puppies, and so on. We have perfectly great dogs in our shelter who have been there for almost two years. The pet overpopulation problem is huge in the South. Please neuter and help prevent unwanted animals!

      • There’s a woman I work with who is really into dogs and when looking at adopting a new dog from the local shelter got them to agree to a vasectomy instead of neutering. So if you come in strong with research, they may approve that if you have concerns.

        • I think there are some cons to that since it doesn’t remove the hormone source, just deactivates the swimmers. So while the dog can’t impregnate another dog, it would still have the urges.

    • There are cons to neutering your dog but the pros almost always outweigh. One pro is that other neutered dogs will be less likely to fight with you dog once he’s also neutered (ocassionally neutered males will rip into non-neutered males, and that’s not good for sweet, non-neutered dogs to have to deal with).

  5. Emergency Fund :

    Any suggestions on where to put my emergency fund? Right now, it’s just sitting in a savings account. That seems silly. It’s a reasonable amount of money (in or around $40,000), so even if we did have a job loss, we wouldn’t need it all immediately. The savings account interest is miniscule. Any suggestions? We have a Vanguard account, so I’d especially love Vanguard suggestions.

    • If I were you, I would keep about $10-20K in a savings account. The point of emergency funds is to be easily accessible so it’s not intended to be an investment. But I would then maybe put the rest of it in perhaps an index fund or something else that would be accessible in 3-5 days.

    • espresso bean :

      What about the Vanguard Prime Money Market fund?

    • Anonymous :

      Follow up question on this. Until now, my DH kept all of his (now our) savings, minus about $2,000, in an investment fund that does pretty well which he could access in 3 days. I’ve had to harp on him that we need accessible savings (at least $10,000 if not more) in a savings account even if the interest sucks. Also, what drives me crazy is that even though the account is very very low-risk, it is still an investment and therefor we COULD possibly lose everything including the principle. Logically, I know that once you have a certain amount of savings you need to invest it. Am I crazy? And what’s a normal amount to keep in cash?

    • Anon for this :

      I have about $375,000 in cash. $250k is the minimum I feel safe with. I’m sorry but I just don’t know if the stock market performance in the next 25+ years is going to look like the historical picture given geo-political events.

      • Emergency Fund :

        Holy cow, I’m sorry I asked. That’s terrifying all the way around.

      • This is an interesting (and atypical) answer… I’m not an economist, but I feel like if an apocalyptic financial event on the magnitude you’re worried about actually happened, cash itself might be useless. You’d probably be better off with gold.

        We aim for around $30k in cash. Another $20-30k in shorter term CDs.

        • Wildkitten :

          This is why I keep my emergency fund in cigarettes and liquor. Those will always have value, even in if apocalyptic earthlings decide to no longer like gold.

        • Wildkitten :

          This is why I keep my emergency fund in cigare*tes and liquor. Those will always have value, even in if apocalyptic earthlings decide to no longer like gold

      • Is that much money FDIC insured? I don’t think so if it’s all in one account, so maybe open multiple bank accounts to get the benefit of FDIC insurance if you’re that worried.

    • Allergies :

      My emergency fund is about the se size as yours. I keep it in the vanguard money market account. It doesn’t earn much interest but it counts as my “eff this job, I quit” money.

      If you want to invest the more of it, I would look into Vanguard’s bond funds and other more conservative funds. Itight be worth a call to one of their financial advisors to discuss.

    • There is no good place . . . . :

      . . . because interest rates are so low right now. There was a time when short term CDs — even like 12=24 months — could be a good option, particularly if you could ladder your funds to make them available on a rolling basis. Right now, a decent online savings account will give you the same yield with more liquidity, so what’s the point? It’s sort of a bummer of a time to have savings (though of course there are upsides if you’re in the market for a loan). Personally, I don’t think putting emergency funds in the stock market is a good idea. You never know when you will need that money, and you don’t want to find your emergency fund depleted to 50% of what you wanted when you get laid off in a down market. You could look into using a HELOC as a back-up emergency fund, and reducing your emergency savings to reflect the extra cash you can get through that.

  6. Men's coats :

    Any slightly stylish winter coats you recommend for my 45 year old brother who lives in the snowy midwest? He is a very casual guy (works in education) and only wears a wool coat (one shorter, one longer) in winter and admits to being cold. He isn’t a fan of a big puffer.

    I’m working on Xmas presents early…

    • I got an Eddie Bauer catalog in the mail recently and a handsome gentleman was wearing this on the back cover. I thought he looked hot. Seems like a nice, warm jacket and it’s currently on sale.

      http://www.eddiebauer.com/product/men–39-s-3-in-1-field-parka/13838171/_/A-ebSku_0380356537000040__13838171_catalog10002_en__US?showProducts=&backToCat=Outerwear&previousPage=GNAV&tab=men&color=537

    • I just got this one for my boyfriend, and I think he looks very handsome in it. http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/the-north-face-gordon-lyons-triclimate-waterproof-hooded-3-in-1-jacket/3959171?origin=keywordsearch-personalizedsort&contextualcategoryid=2375500&fashionColor=Black+Ink+Green&resultback=240

      We got the TNF Black version, and the fleece liner is a lot more fitted than I expected it to be. He’s using it already even though he hasn’t needed the shell yet. The shell also is quilted on the inside and thicker than my old TNF shell, so he could wear it on it’s own on a snowy day that isn’t bitter cold, or rainy days in the fall and spring.

    • Men's coats :

      I really like these two suggestions, as the flexibility in the coats is a great plus. Thank you both!!

  7. NYC Meetup :

    Posting again for maximum visibility.

    Meg March here. Olya’s going to be in town from Nov 12-15, and has posted at off-hours a couple times suggesting we do a meetup. It’s been a while since we’ve had one. If you’re interested, email me at megmarchcorpor*tte at the gmail (replace the star with an e, obviously) and we’ll try to arrange something. I’m thinking (without input) that Thursday the 12th might work well, so let me know if a) you’d like to come but that night doesn’t work and b) what time would work for you.

  8. Talbots is running a trunk show tomorrow evening (Thursday 6 -8 0r 9) at all of their NYC stores. I got a sneak peek at some of the suits and dresses and they are perfect for a tailored look that is easily amped up with a few accessories.

  9. Pink fatigue? :

    Hi all,

    Not exactly sure where I’m going with this, but bear with me? I’m having an adverse reaction to something, and I am always so impressed by people’s input on this forum that I think some other viewpoints could be exactly what I need.

    So: We just got a company-wide email about one of those “jeans for charity” days — you know, donate $20 and wear jeans to work. The cause in question is various br*st cancer charities. October is br*st cancer awareness month, so tis the season. But, I’ve been having a fairly adverse reaction to all the various campaigns (jeans, pink ribbons, the annual walk with people in pink tutus), in two ways:

    – A close family member just died of complications from br*st cancer earlier this year, and so I’m just really *sad*. I miss her, and this makes me think about her. Obviously this is not the only thing that reminds me of her, and it’s all a part of the grieving process, but I’m still just sad. It seems like the prevailing narrative about br*st cancer (and to some extent, cancer generally) is sort of Grrrrl Power/woman warrior/unwavering positivity…which is just not how it feels when a loved one “loses the battle” (which, you know, is terminology with its own set of problems).

    – I’m also finding myself uncomfortable with the commoditization of the whole campaign — all the pink products and save the ta-tas and everything seems really commercial, and maybe even frivolous?

    So, I’m interested — especially since I know many people on this forum have had close and intimate experiences with br*st cancer. How do you feel about these types of campaigns? Do you take part? Do you take comfort and meaning from participating — and if not, are there actions you take that DO check those boxes? Help me think about this in different ways.

    Also, as a general question, regardless of cause, do you generally partake in activities like charity jeans days?

    • Anonymous :

      No personal experience with b-cancer, fortunately, but I do hate the “save the tatas” and related marketing. B-cancer should be stopped because it’s a horrible disease that kills people (men and women). I hate the s-e-x-ualization of the campaigns.

    • I’m so sorry for your loss, and for you to be grieving during this time. This year, more than others, I’ve seen several articles about how the slogans and commercialization just aren’t cutting it. “They’re a cheeky way to get people, especially men, thinking about breast cancer, but they sacrifice the gravity of the epidemic and replace it with shallow sexual innuendo.” This quote is referring to the slogans, but I feel the commercialization fits in as well. Source (old, but still applicable): https://feminist.org/blog/index.php/2012/10/03/why-save-second-base-shouldnt-be-our-mantra/

      Do you think that is it?

      Other articles:
      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/br**st-cancer-awareness-month-isnt-always-empowering_561d2775e4b050c6c4a2e04c (copy+paste and change the ** to ea)

      http://jezebel.com/5953952/save-the-women-not-the-b**bies (** = oo)

    • Anonymous :

      That stuff all gets on my nerves big time. I think it’s rooted in s*xism. First of all, people like to talk about b**bs. Second, it’s like people (mostly the NFL) are saying, “pink is a girl color, so I wouldn’t usually wear it, but I care about bre*st cancer sooo much that I will lower myself enough to wear a girl color.” Blah. Also, it isn’t even close to the biggest killer of women, but heart disease, etc. is so less s*xy. Also, very little of the money goes to research. And yes, the products and other cr*p that gets bought and handed out and just thrown away is gross.

      Maybe you can tell that this is a SUBJECT for me.

    • My thoughts are with you and your family, and I’m so sorry for your loss.

      My mother is a breast cancer survivor (hers was mild and caught very early, fortunately) and DESPISES the pink campaigns for all of the reasons that you listed. I never thought too much about it until I asked her what her opinion on it was, a few months after her last treatment. Turns out that there is actually a growing critical response and counter-movement to the whole pink-out/save the ta-tas movement.

      • My mom (and her mom) are also breast cancer survivors. My mom is not a fan of the pink campaigns, but also says that she can’t see why judging other women for how they choose to cope and deal with a scary situation is kind of pointless, and I agree with her. Do I want to put on a pink tutu and wear a save-the-tatas button? Nope. But if Sally wants to do it because Sally is struggling with her diagnosis and this makes her feel better and more powerful? Then power to Sally.

        • Anon for This :

          I agree with your position, but I do so still with a significant internal struggle. To me, Support Breast Cancer is a marketing campaign that I can’t take seriously. The NFL, of ALL organizations, wearing pink supporting women? Gag me. My mom is a 3x breast cancer survivor, and a freaking rock star. I am angry all month because of the numbing effect Support Breast Cancer has on actual breast cancer stories, survivors, and families. Even with good-hearted people trying to do the right thing, the “support” just feels so artificial.

          • I’m the Anon from 411pm and I agree completely. Especially so as my dad is a cancer physician (not breast) and I’ve lost many other people close to me to not-breast cancer, and it’s really sad how little money and attention other diseases get. The only time I contribute to breast cancer is when a person close to me going through it is doing some sort of fundraising event. Otherwise, my automatic monthly donation goes to a different cancer.

        • I think the difference is that if Sally is coping with a loss/scary situation due to breast cancer, than Sally can do whatever makes her feel better. But for women who AREN’T coping with a loss/scary situation, I think judging their choice to participate in the campaign is fair game. I’m less inclined to judge women themselves for participating, as I believe the whole thing is slickly marketed to get dollars and create a feeling of do-gooding in people. I think criticisms of the campaign, for all the reasons stated by others here, are totally warranted.

    • I lost a close family member to b-cancer as well, and I agree that all the pink-ification seems to make it frivolous and silly. When she first got diagnosed, she asked anyone who asked “how can i help” to sign up for the Army of Women email. It lets recipients know about active cancer research trials, so you can participate in a potential cure, whether you’ve been diagnosed or not. For example, the latest email said there is a study looking for twins where one or both has been diagnosed.

      And my company does charity jeans day. As I’m in management, I participate in order to set an example for my team – I want them to feel comfortable wearing jeans in the office if they so choose. I don’t typically donate at the office, but I make exceptions when it’s a matter of culture-setting.

      • Anonymous :

        This is great – just signed up!

        Lots of breast cancer in my family, so I’m very very nervous about it for myself and my daughter.

    • Anonymous :

      Agree with the points above. I generally dislike being persuaded to give to a charity without a choice of what it is. Or assuming that OF COURSE I’d like to donate to breast cancer research. Don’t get me wrong, finding a cure or better treatments for breast cancer would be amazing, but there are a lot of other good causes out there. I actually got really fired up about this at Macy’s last year when they were like “donate $3 to Susan G Koman and save 15%” and the lady added a donation without asking me (and as you may know, many people are critical of how Susan G Koman uses their donations). I digress…I agree with you, but I’d also just wear the jeans to go along with everyone else.

      In a related matter, my work had a “wear purple” day last week in support of LGBT teens. Yay, another great cause. BUT, it got me thinking that there may be plenty of people in my workplace who do not agree with the LGBT lifestyle–for lack of a better term (this is not my personal belief). So I thought it was really weird for my workplace to push support for something that could be (potentially) controversial.

    • Lorelai Gilmore :

      You might be interested in “Welcome to Cancerland,” by Barbara Ehrenreich. She is a terrific writer who endured breast cancer and had similar feelings about the pink-ification of breast cancer. I have my own doubts about the pink tide, but have gotten less doctrinaire about it ever since I read “Emperor of Maladies,” which is a history of cancer and talks about the extent to which breast cancer was a hidden or shameful disease until quite recently. People wouldn’t even use the word “breast,” and it was stigmatized. I see the current breast cancer awareness stuff as a corrective to this legacy of silence. Knowing that history gave me a sense of context for breast cancer awareness as a valuable thing in of itself. I still don’t like the “save the boobies” themes – mostly because I think that we should be saving WOMEN as HUMAN BEINGS, not breasts – but so be it.

      • I am a breast cancer survivor. To the initial poster: Sorry for your loss. To Lorelai Gilmore: You’ve pretty much said exactly how I feel. My grandmother’s breast cancer was a big, scary secret, hidden from everyone until she was obviously dying. Even then, it was not discussed outside of the house. How sad those days were and how much better things are for those diagnosed with this disease—and their families— today!

    • I like what Talbots did this season for items whose sales proceeds go to breast cancer. They chose a nice purple colour which many women like (rather than the weird pink). I want to buy something from their collection because I just like them and is much more wearable than bright pink which has become breast cancer colour.

      • I happened to wear some pink stuff (not cancer-related, just gear that happened to be pink) in a marathon a little while ago and when I crossed the finish line, the announcer applauded me for “running for a cure.” Um, no. I just liked the pink running skirt. It was seriously bizarre.

    • I *hate* the pinkwashing, the cutesy slogans, the grrrl power, and the commodification of the disease.

      “Awareness” campaigns often cheese me off – awareness is nice, but you need to back it up. The pink-ribbon garbage isn’t really about research money, helping poor women with the disease, or prevention/early detection – it’s a feel-good campaign.

      Prevention and early treatment are important. Some ways to reduce risk factors: avoid certain foods, exercise on a regular basis, maintain a healthy weight. Be aware of your own specific risk factors (genetic, environmental, etc) and develop an appropriate detection plan with your doctor.

      “Buying pink crap” isn’t on that list.

    • think before you pink :

      I’m a huge supporter of Br#ast cancer action “think before you pink”campaign. Which points out that many of these companies spend more on advertising their campaign than they actually donate. Or companies that put pink ribbons on products that cause cancer. Grrr! Makes me so mad!

    • Anon for this :

      I have a problem with the whole breast cancer awareness thing. I’m a rectal cancer survivor and you never hear about that cancer…even though colorectal cancer is number two overall, for both men and women. It’s just not cute or appealing, ( c’mon…the ribbon color is brown!) . And most breast cancer survivors, once their hair grows back and if they’re lucky enough to not have lymphedema, are like they were before. Most colorectal cancer survivors have permanent problems with their digestive systems, or colostomies, and it isn’t anything you can talk about with people. It affects their lives every day, for the rest of their lives. Hope I don’t sound too bitter but October is especially tough to take!

      • I think you’re awesome

      • A survivor of something else :

        I think you are awesome as well! And as a survivor/patient of an often fatal type of pulmonary/cardio disease that no one ever hears about, I totally agree with you.

        Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women, and is more deadly than all forms of cancer combined.
        Heart disease causes 1 in 3 women’s deaths each year, killing approximately one woman every minute.
        An estimated 43 million women in the U.S. are affected by heart disease.
        Ninety percent of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease.
        Since 1984, more women than men have died each year from heart disease.
        The symptoms of heart disease can be different in women and men, and are often misunderstood.
        While 1 in 31 American women dies from breast cancer each year, 1 in 3 dies of heart disease.
        Only 1 in 5 American women believe that heart disease is her greatest health threat.
        Women comprise only 24 percent of participants in all heart-related studies.

        Yet, breast cancer gets all the attention because it gives people a chance to say breast in public.

        My disease, Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension, does have a nice color … Periwinkle, and I will be sporting a periwinkle manicure for the month of November.

  10. Jellybean :

    Poll: 1 – Where does most of your money come from? Salary? Investing? Something else? 2 – What are your investment goals? Do you hope to make most your lifetime income through investments? 3 – For those who do invest/are interested in investing, what do you invest in/recommend?

    • 1. Salary
      2. To have one million dollars worth of savings by the time I am 35. I hope to make at least 50% of my lifetime earnings through investments
      3. I have invested in real estate (I don’t own a house), 401K, non-retirement stock accounts, agriculture, small quantity of gold just for diversification

      • Holy sh*t. Congratulations on your goals – it sounds like you’re already setting yourself up for success. I’m a financial advisor, and 1MM in savings by age 35 would be astounding to me.

    • Would also love to see the responses…maybe you could try posting again in the morning.

    • Anonymous :

      1. salary
      2. i had a goal to be making at least 100k by 30 and be a director level (i am not in law). I’m 32 and a VP making 200k inc. my bonus so i call that achieved (and I was promoted to a director making over 100k 2 months before my 30th b’day)
      3. million in assets by 35 (including retirement)
      4. million in non-retirement non-primary real estate non-college savings assets by 40 (first kid will be going to college when I am 44)
      5. fully funded college savings accounts for 1.5 kids by 45 and 3 kids by 50

      Many of these goals will be achieved by investments.

    • lucy stone :

      1. Salary
      2. Net worth of 1M by age 40. I expect most wealth will be made from investments as I get closer to that point.
      3. The bulk of my investments are in large cap growth funds, with the rest spread around between small cap, international, and bonds.

      I’m a government employee and my short term goal is to max out my 457 by the end of next year. As I pay down other debt, I keep upping my contribution, and I stick my annual pay increase in it. I’m about $150/check away from maxing out.

      • depressing... :

        This thread is totally depressing, and I assume not representative…

        You are a government employee and are likely to have a net worth of 1M by the age of 40?!?!? On top of whatever amazing retirement benefits you will have?

  11. Can anyone recommend a good place to buy fitted, King-size sheets? My fitted sheets are dying before the top sheets, and I’m thinking about just replacing the fitted sheets and continuing on with the top sheets. They’re just decent-quality white cotton sheets, and I’m not particularly worried about them matching precisely.

    • Wildkitten :

      I’d love to hear what people have to say – I have the same problem. I’ve found fitted sheets only at Ikea, but they are terrible quality.

    • Peacock Alley. I get them on super sale at Tuesday Morning.

    • The Company Store sells nice sheets and sells them individually so you can just buy fitted sheets

    • Anonymous :

      LL Bean – nice quality

      • Anonymous :

        Yes! LLBean. My sheets have lasted – oh, wow! – quite a while and are still soft.

      • lost academic :

        +1 – the best quality and they haven’t worn out like all the others. Lands End v. similar.

    • I’ve been surprisingly happy with my Target fitted sheets (looking online now, I think they’re probably the Threshold 300 thread count fitted sheets). They’re very inexpensive compared to other, fancier options, which I like when I’m dealing with only half a set, and are also pretty generic/unlikely to be obviously mismatched in some way. LL Bean sheets are the nicest I’ve had, but I feel weird spending that much on half a set of sheets–like if I’m going to get the really nice ones, I want them to be a whole really nice experience, not half of one.

    • I buy my fitted sheets at Target. The threshold series is not bad (but not super great either). Macy’s often has good deals around the holidays for fitted sheets with pretty good brands that often last quite a while.

  12. Midwest Mama :

    Recs for the best inexpensive skinny jeans that come in talls/longs? I’m hesitant to order any from Old Navy because their talls are only online and their sizing is so inconsistent.

    • Are you sure that ON Talls are only online? I have definitely purchased long skinny jeans from ON in store before – and definitely had to try on a bunch because the sizing is so inconsistent. They’re my favorites though!

      • Midwest Mama :

        IIRC, Old Navy has “regular size” jeans, which come in 3 lengths (short, regular, and long) and then a separate “tall” size, which run longer than the longs. I think the talls are only sold online, at least I haven’t ever seen them in the stores in my Midwest city. I keep hearing good things about ON jeans, though, so maybe I’ll just bite the bullet and order a bunch with the hopes that one pair will fit!

        • Anonymous :

          Yes, but their “long” size is equivalent to most other stores “tall” sizes. Their “tall” is crazy long (I’m almost 6′ with most of my height in my legs and have to hem or roll the cuffs of the talls).

          • Yes, I am 6′ with long legs and the “longs” have always worked great for me.

        • Eh, good and bad to Old Navy jeans. that’s what I have now and they tend to stretch after a few wears and you get that saggy butt look. I think once these jeans bite the dust it’ll be time to upgrade to higher quality.

    • Wildkitten :

      I’ve had great luck with ON tall khakis online.

    • If you catch a sale at Gap, their jeggings are my favorite skinny jeans. Not the pull-on kind, but the ones with actual zipper and buttons. So comfy, and I buy them in tall (I’m 6′).

      • Midwest Mama :

        Fortunately, it seems as though I get daily emails from Gap with some sort of discount. I’ll try there; thanks!

    • I am newly OBSESSED with Liz Claiborne skinny fit jeggings from, of all places, JCPenny. Unlike ON jeans, they don’t stretch out as the day goes on. LOVE THEM.

      Will post the link as a reply. Seriously, TTS, nice and long (I have a 34-35 inch inseam) and they look and wear great!

      • These. They are THE BOMB. I just found out JCP carries tall jeans, ordered a huge box, and these were the clear winners.

        http://www.jcpenney.com/liz-claiborne-city-fit-skinny-jeans-tall/prod.jump?ppId=pp5005700231&catId=cat100300026&subcatId=cat100250030&deptId=dept20000013&topDim=Brand&topDimvalue=liz+claiborne&dimCombo=Brand%7C&dimComboVal=liz+claiborne%7C&currentDim=Brand&currentDimVal=liz+claiborne&_dyncharset=UTF-8&colorizedImg=DP0612201417155125M.tif&urlState=/women/specialty-sizing/tall/shop-clothing/jeans/liz-claiborne/_/N-1nprzuZ68/cat.jump

        If the link doesn’t work, it’s Liz Claiborne® City-Fit Skinny Jeans – Tall
        web ID: 2367114

    • lost academic :

      Can I tack onto this – where can one buy ‘skinny’ jeans that also work for someone with thighs and a butt? I’d like jeans that easily tucked into tall boots, and everything I own is a boot cut jean instead so that doesn’t work. Do these even exist?

  13. Anonymous :

    I just tried this suit on today. Unfortunately the jacket was very boxy and unflattering for me (32DD, small waist, short torso, petite).

  14. Anonymous :

    Recs for a life insurance company? 2 adults, 1 kid and another on the way, early 30s. employer plans have changed and are no longer enough for our needs.

    • As long as you know what you need (i.e. most likely term life) and will stick to that, then just get quotes from a broker. They can shop different companies to get you the best deal. It’s hard to recommend a company because rates will vary based on your specific details.

    • Yay! I love Ann Taylor, but one of the OP’s said it looked boxey on her. Ann Taylor fit’s me well most of the time and it is VERY styleish w/o being to expensive! YAY!!!

      As for the OP, get an insurance broker to get you quote’s. They do NOT charge for it b/c they get paid by the insurance companies. My dad got quote’s for Mom and Him and he saved alot of money.

      Is anyone in the HIVE goeing to watch the debate’s tonite? I want to see Hillary, but she is NOT participateing. FOOEY! When will Hillary debate Donald Trump? That will be exciteing!

      • I tried to watch the debate but it wasn’t streamable. Hillary will debate the Donald when he wins the nomination… YAY!!!

  15. It’s staff review time at my office — how honest are you with written feedback, knowing that the staff member will see who made what comments? I’ve worked with a paralegal over the past year who, while incredibly sweet, just is not “getting it” and is not very good at her job, despite being given tons of instruction and support. The matter that I worked on with her is over, and I will likely not be working with her again. Others are aware that she has performance problems, so I am not the only one who has seen the issues. It’s at the point where I don’t know that she is capable of coming up to standards, and I think she would be better off in a different profession entirely (although she has said she eventually wants to go to law school herself). I don’t want to crush her dreams, but I also feel like I need to be a grown-up and give constructive, honest feedback rather than just saying “she did a good job” and passing her through. If my name weren’t attached to it, I’d feel a lot more free to be honest. Sigh.

    • Anonymous :

      My philosophy on written reviews is that you shouldn’t be delivering negative feedback that you haven’t delivered directly in person.

      • +1 as someone who received really vague, negative criticism in a formal review from partners who had been telling me for a year what a great job I was doing and had given me literally zero constructive criticism on anything I had ever done, unless you have addressed this with her in person, do not write her a negative review. It is a cowardly way to address the issue. I am always appreciative of constructive criticism (even if I may not enjoy the process of getting it), because it is the only way you are going to learn, but a formal review is not the time nor the place to be giving it on major issues (minor ones, sure).

    • Agree. It would be awful to read this instead of hearing it directly, especially if the person could figure out it’s you. Don’t hide behind the process. Manage her. Talk to her about what she’s lacking and how she could improve. If she doesn’t hear you, at least you’ve said it.

      • This is all helpful to hear and just reinforces my instinct to be bland and positive in her written review even though it’s disingenuous. Each time she made mistakes, I did have her fix the work, and I spent a lot of time explaining how to fix the issues and what she needed to do next time. Yet none of it ever “stuck,” and the same mistakes were made over and over and had to be corrected over and over. So she knows she wasn’t doing a great job. At the same time, I don’t want to be “that person” who puts negative (though totally honest and not a surprise) criticism in her formal review.

    • Anonymous :

      I think this is very “know your office.” At my old Big Law firm there was an unwritten rule that non-partners didn’t give negative reviews to paras and assistants, no matter how awful they were. I would make sure it’s ok for you to give honest feedback before you do.

  16. KateMiddletown :

    I saw this suit on a friend two days ago and it looked great. I don’t think she had the jacket buttoned. The material isn’t sweatshirt-y but looks like a lighter tweedy greyish color. I think it’s a definite add to my collection (once I see 50% off.)

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