Suit of the Week: L.K. Bennett

For 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.

Oooh: I’m sure we’ve featured the Judi jacket from L.K. Bennett before, but this dark belted purple is so lovely — interesting, but still subdued. There’s definitely a matching skirt, and I believe the pictured dress matches as well. Alas, it isn’t pictured on a model at the LKB site, but you can see it in teal on Kate Middleton in our post on whether or not lawyers can wear interesting suits to court. Weirdly, each of the three pieces is $395.

A couple of other options for purple suits: a more affordable one and one that comes in plus sizes (it’s a pantsuit, however).

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Comments

  1. Are there any other services like Rent the Runway Unlimited that you have had good experience with?

    • I thought this post on the blog The Directrice was interesting.

      http://thedirectrice.com/a-new-model/

      I really enjoy that blog as well.

  2. SF in House :

    That is absolutely gorgeous. If only I wore suits!

  3. Anonymous :

    I tried on this dress, and although it’s absolutely gorgeous the cut is short-waisted and very curvy in the hips. It’s as if the dress is a size or two larger on the bottom than on the top. If you are not a short-waisted pear, extensive tailoring will be required. If you are a short-waisted pear, buy this dress!

    • Anonymous :

      That’s funny — I can’t imagine that it worked on Kate Middleton without substantial altering.

      • Anonymous :

        I’m sure all of Kate’s clothes are tailored.

        • Anonymous :

          Or made to measure. A lot of her dresses are not made exactly like the off-the-rack version–different sleeves or neckline, etc.

    • gummy bears :

      Thanks for this!

      This short waisted pear just went to a MM LaFleur pop-up and not one dress was wearable. I love the look of the British MM LaFleur sister – LK Bennett – but have been hesitant to try.

    • I find this brand for someone short waited with narrow shoulders.

    • Anonymous :

      Does anyone have experience with their return policies?

      You had me at “short-waisted pear.”

    • Flats Only :

      I have noticed that a lot of British brands run short-waisted. People here mention that about Boden, and their dresses fit me very well. I went shopping in London for work clothes while on a trip last year, and at first, as a petite, short-waisted pear I was was disappointed that they didn’t have much for petites. But when I actually tried dresses on I discovered that a lot of them fit me from the hips upwards, and just needed a good 6 inched hemmed off the skirt. I was shopping at Marks and Spencer and John Lewis.

  4. Scene: I’ve been asked to help out a group in my Department who just had their manager leave. I had been in this group a few years ago and had been told they just needed an experienced manager to help them ‘sort out a couple of projects that were in transition’.

    What I actually said to the group: ‘I think it will be a great learning opportunity for you to take ownership of these projects that outgoing manager used to handle. I’d encourage you to start by really doing background research and making sure you can explain how we got to our final product.’

    What I wish I could have said: ‘Holy crap. Y’all are scr3wed. Manager either saved nothing or deleted all of their files on their way out. You guys are going to basically have to re-do 2 years worth of work and I don’t know how to tell you just what a terrible position your (beloved) manager left you in.’

    • That realllly sucks. I think it would be more fair to those under you to be a bit more forthcoming about the problems so they don’t feel they’re going to get the blame for this. Do those up the chain understand the extent of the issue? I’ve been on a team where we were left with nothing when somebody left unexpectedly, and it meant a lot that my superiors were forthright and understanding.

      • (I don’t know if you’ll see this- it’s late)

        The higher ups know some of it, but I’m not sure if they know how bad it is. I’m still hoping that we will magically find the missing files, but I’m not fully optimistic. The weird pickle is that the team loved this manager, so I’m being very careful not to badmouth her or say anything that could be construed as badmouthing her.

  5. Millennial Anon :

    How do you guys deal with jealousy and comparing yourself to others? I’m on the younger side of this forum – mid 20s – just starting to feel like I found my passion in terms of career, what I need to do to get there (im in grad school and working at the moment and love it!). But then I foolishly go look at so-and-so who got into a better school than me, has fancier friends, has (insert fancy prestigious job here), etc. And it makes me feel behind like if I had the passion, drive, and confidence in college that I have now, then I could’ve achieved more earlier? I know this isnt really logical, but its how ive been feeling lately.

    How do I let go of these feelings? I’m already seeing a therapist which is a great help. Should I also limit time on social media? Have a mantra etc?

    • Anonymous :

      If it makes you feel better, a lot of us are in our 30s or beyond and still haven’t found a passion. So I think you should count yourself as lucky.

      I am dealing with a lot of envy recently as well, and I do think a lot of it stems from looking at Instagram (I get jealous of people’s constant travel, etc). But some of it is career-related and not easily avoided by getting off of social media.

    • Your mantra should be: “I am running my own race.”

      Mid ’20s is so young, in the grand scheme of things. Your on the right track, so just keep rocking it.

      Also: so-called fancy people, friends, and material things do not equal happiness. Achievement also doesn’t equal happiness.

    • Yes…. get of social media. So, so unhealthy for many of us who have challenging lives or anxiety.

      And OP – you are crazy young. So much will happen in the next decade, that this year will seem like a blip on the radar.

      Also agree that most of us never work in our passion, and that you are ahead of the game if you have found it and can turn it into a career.

      I will always remember my grad school years as the best of my life. Meet everyone, make contacts, make friends, learn to live simply and frugally and develop habits that will help you retire early …. if you want it in the long run.

      • get OFF of….social media

      • Seconding the urge to quit social media. I went off Facebook during a hard time in my career a few years ago, and that helped probably more than any other single change I made. I have never really gone back on, and I don’t have any other social media either. It’s fabulous. I feel so much better about my appearance, personal life, and career not having such an obvious breeding ground for jealousy and resentment anymore.

        Also, we all know this, but it never hurts to get a reminder: everyone’s posts are PR anyway. Mine included, which is another reason I went off. You’re comparing your inner state to someone else’s edited, polished and filtered self-report.

    • Baconpancakes :

      I would have loved to have figured out my passion and been in grad school for it in my mid-20’s instead of at 30. At this point I just feel lucky to have figured it out at all. I’m just now starting in my chosen field, and I feel like my life can finally start.

      It helps to remember that no matter where you are, there’s probably someone jealous of YOUR success. You’re doing great! If you haven’t already, read the Defining Decade. It was hugely helpful when I read it at 29, so you can apply its lessons with even more time!

    • Cookbooks :

      You’ve found your passion and you’re happy! Keep telling yourself this. Because fancy friends and schools and prestigious jobs don’t necessarily make someone fulfilled. Plus, as others have said, you have plenty of time ahead to make your mark!

    • Anonymous :

      Turn off social media.

      I’m not one of the ones that when I run across people with great jobs/money/beautiful homes – always has to say — oh yeah but x part of their life may be awful; bc I do believe there are people that have it all. But my view on that is — you don’t know who has it all and who doesn’t at any point in time bc you don’t live in someone else’s home and someone else’s mind, so don’t worry about it based on the small parts of their life you do see. So just bc you’re hearing a fancy job title or seeing pics of a fancy office at age 25 doesn’t mean that in their mind that person isn’t saying — hmm, I just took an internship here as a junior and thought I’d work here 1 yr max after college, and then I got promoted and have been here for 5 yrs — do I stick with this even though I really wanted to do x but this pays well and gives me a nice life. Or do I risk it all and go back to grad school? Mid 20s is a time of a lot of change for most so many friends are probably contemplating big job moves, geographic moves etc. — you just don’t see that on IG.

    • Sassyfras :

      I feel this so hard. When I see some of the things some of my college classmates are doing, I can start to feel like I haven’t achieved anything. And I can tell you that my life has not turned out at ALL to be what I expected, nowhere near as glamorous or career-focused as I had hoped. When I was your age, this really got me down and I felt like a failure too. But with the perspective that another decade has given me, I can tell you that my life is worlds better than I ever could have imagined – I have a great job, a beautiful family, and a nice home. It’s not in the city I imagined. It’s not in the field I imagined. I don’t love work as much as I thought I would. But it’s okay. Life is good :)

      • Sassyfras :

        And finding your passion means you’re light years beyond most people I know. You’re doing a great job and hopefully time gives you the same perspective it gave me.

      • BeenThatGuy :

        THIS! My life, at 41, is nothing what I thought it would be. Literally nothing. And it took me decades to realize that I have always been exactly where I needed to be. That fills my heart with happiness.

        BTW, stay off social media!

    • Eeertmeert :

      It might be helpful to remember
      A) things really start to click when you turn 27. You aren’t there yet, and while you are truly in a great position for your age, biologically your brain is just finishing up being fully formed and you still have plenty of adventures coming down the pipeline. Enjoy where you are, learn to be in your now and let life unfold. If I could go back to mid-twenties I would work this muscle the hardest.
      B) Comparing yourself to others is apples and oranges, always and forever. If you could body switch with them and experience their internal experience, then maybe you could actually compare like to like. But you can only ever be you, so comparing yourself to others is never helpful.
      C) Read Captain Awkward’s advice blog. She’s got amazing, thorough advice – including scripts – on living a life full of healthy communication and boundaries.
      D) Make mistakes. Try new things. Learn new skill, strike up friendships, etc. Never stop stretching the boundaries of your self-confidence into new territory.I am convinced that self confidence in your ability to negotiate your own darker feelings without fear is the anti-envy Rx. It gives one the capacity to be satisfied with yourself.

      I hope something here helps. Never forget that at many points in your life you will feel you have lost your sense of direction (or some similar, uncomfortable thing). It feels scary the first few rounds, then you start feeling secure in the nature of the phase, and then you turn around and realize you are almost 40 and all your hard work on yourself paid off ❤

    • Anonymous :

      Good for her, not for me. That’s my mantra.

      • Same here (thanks, Amy Poehler). If I’m generally feeling happy and fulfilled, even if my life isn’t OMG PERFECT and there are others out there who have/do more, then I think I’m in a pretty good place.

        Also, stay off of social media or limit your time. Instagram tends to only show the highlights, not the realities or the full picture with all of the current highs and lows of someone’s life.

    • Anonymous :

      Agree with the advice already given. All I’ll add is — good for you for working on learning to deal with this now. Right now it’s about who has the fanciest title, nicest office vs. who is still stuck in school. But the competition never ends — by mid 30s — it’ll be — who has a gorgeous house that they own vs. who is still in a 1 bedroom rental; who is married with 3 beautiful kids already and who isn’t; who is STILL in school/training vs. who is now a junior exec; who made partner at their firm vs. who leaned out etc.; who already has 300k stashed in investments/retirement vs. who just figured out last week how to put a few $ into a 401k for the first time. You have to chart your own course for the things you want and then deal with achieving them or not; that is hard enough – it’s much harder when you start comparing others who likely aren’t in your field, don’t want the exact same things etc.

    • Anonymous :

      Two things:
      1. Don’t scoreboard your life–you will always be disappointed because there is always someone out there with a better score. Be yourself, live in the present, and be your best.

      2. Life is a marathon, not a sprint. Things take time and too much too fast rarely turns out well. Live fully each day and understand every experience presents opportunity.

    • Millennial Anon OP :

      Currently going through all these and its all so uplifting, thanks guys. :’)

      • Here’s one more. I once experienced very painful envy in a different context. I was going through infertility treatment and several friends and family members got pregnant during that time, all of them with no medical intervention at all. At some point during that period, I happened to read something by Byron Katie that stuck with me: “There are three kinds of business. My business, your business, and God’s business.”

        I’m not religious and don’t believe in a personal God, but this really had an impact on me. I realized that concerning myself with other people’s pregnancies was a waste of time and energy that could be devoted to my own self-care and development. Whenever I would find myself comparing myself to a pregnant friend, I would remind myself, “Friend’s pregnancy is none of my business.” And it worked! It was so simple, but it brought me a lot of peace.

        Good luck and enjoy your work!

    • Anonymous :

      Like you, I’m generally pleased with my life and its progress yet also have these thoughts. I tend to realize that it is all in the eye of the beholder, though. Shockingly, a woman confessed that I’m her “it girl” and another time someone at work asked me to coach her on projecting professional warmth and self-assurance. We’d both had babies the same year and she somehow thought I had it all together. You know, on a day when I hadn’t eaten breakfast and was wearing two different earrings. The grass can seem greener on the other side, and we tend to be our own worst critics.

  6. Hiking boots rec? :

    Anyone have hiking boots they love? I am not a very experienced hiker but I’m in decent shape and want to get into it more — ergo, something moderately priced, a little stylish, good for various conditions. Would love your recs! TIA!

    • Is there a reason you want boots specifically? Unless you’re carrying a pretty heavy load, they’re not usually considered necessary I don’t think.

      For casual day hiking (up to 20 miles, carrying a day pack with food and snacks that weights 10-15 pounds), I have a pair of Salomon waterproof trail running shoes that I love. Salomon makes a bunch of different styles in different levels of ruggedness and I went with a more rugged style. They’re years old at this point and I can’t remember which model they are exactly, but I think they might be these:
      https://www.rei.com/rei-garage/product/123978/salomon-xa-pro-3d-cs-wp-trail-running-shoes-womens

      If you really want boots, Salomon is a great brand and they make boots too.

      • Baconpancakes :

        There are a lot of crossover styles now – more ankle support (I have weak ankles) but lightweight and breathable.

        I like Keens because I tend to need a wide toebox when I’m hiking.

        • I admit I hate ankle support. I’ve never done any through-hiking or anything where I’d be carrying a heavy load so I’ve never thought it necessary to invest in a pair. I haven’t tried on a pair of actual hiking boots in years and years so I’m not familiar with those crossover ones.

        • Anonymous :

          Not OP, but following. The thing I hate about ankle support is that the ankle cuff is invariably too big and rubs, causing blisters. Any recommendations for something that’s lightweight and more trail runner than boot, fits narrow heel/ wide forefoot, but with ankle support that can be tightened for narrow ankles?

          • I wish! I’ve used that self-binding tape to create ankle support before. I almost wish there were a wrap-up hiking boot? (That didn’t make me look like some kind of elf?)

    • I have some oboz brand hiking shoes that have been really good for similar hiking.

    • Anonymous :

      I have Keens and love them – they are so much more light weight than other hiking boots, and have stood up well.

    • I have Oboz Sawtooth boots that are decent in terms of support and grip, but they run SO hot. I wouldn’t wear them for hiking in hot climates. I also have a pair of Altra trail running shoes that I use for shorter hikes that I really like. They have a big toebox and are great for wide feet.

    • I love the Ahnu Sugarpine. Very lightweight and pretty cute. They come in both a boot and shoe version, and are even waterproof.

      • Anonymous :

        Agree on Ahnu boots – they are lightweight and supportive. You won’t believe the difference a good pair of hiking boots makes over running shoes. Have fun!

    • I use trail running shoes for most hikes, but have Adidas hiking boots for longer ones. Adidas fits my feet well and I can find them on sale on Amazon if I’m not picky about colors.

    • Anonymous :

      I think it depends on your foot shape. I have wider toes, so I wear Keens. My friend with narrow feet wears Vasquez. You mostly just need to try them on and see what fits. The brand Ahnu is very popular – I see lots of people with Ahnu Sugarpine or Montara. They make nice shoes and aren’t ridiculously expensive. Also recommend Darn Tough socks. You need a quality hiking sock with your boots, make sure to try on your boots with the right kind of sock.

    • I have Merrell hiking shoes and really like them. I got them on sale at DSW.

    • Anonymous BigLaw Associate :

      I like Merrell, but I wouldn’t say they are stylish.

    • I have two pairs of Merrill’s, the All Out Crush Light shoe. I love them! They are considered trail running (which I don’t do, I just hike) but are so comfortable and light weight. They have a big toe box too, which I like.

    • Calibrachoa :

      I have a pair of Regatta boots that are super lightweight and stylish enough that I am wearing them to work today ;) I have bad ankles so I wanted the extra support for city walking as well as wandering around in the woods.

  7. All Saints bag :

    Love LK Bennett, but don’t love belts near my stomach.

    Long shot question, but does anyone have the All Saints Kita Convertible Leather Backpack that Belle at TheWorkEdit featured recently? I’m considering buying it in the larger size, but it’s $400! Definitely need someone to talk me into/out of it. (I’d use it for a walking commute as a backpack and then convert to a purse for in-office use. IANAL, but my office is business dress in DC if that helps.)

  8. Paging DC r3**3s :

    For the DC crowd: any thoughts on Navy Yard as a place to live? I’m single, mid-20s, currently living in VA in a studio but considering moving to Navy Yard when my lease is up in 6 months. Anyone have any input on that (or even buildings to recommend, even though it’s early)? Price is a factor – I’d prefer under $1500/mo for a studio but could go up to perhaps $1700-$1800 if needed.

    • I had friends who lived in the Capitol Yards (70, 101, 909) buildings 2 years ago. They’re nice. Remember it gets kind of loud (and bright at night) down there because you’re right near the ballpark, so definitely consider that if you think you’d be bothered by that. The area (at least 2 years ago) has a bit of a post-college vibe that may suit you (i.e., tons of young professionals in their mid-20s doing the happy hour scene, not so much with an older crowd).

    • Flats Only :

      I think if you don’t mind living next to a stadium (loud, bright, traffic, etc.) it could be fun. There are some decent outdoor spaces and many new restaurants and bars. Plus if you are a baseball fan what fun to be able to walk over to the stadium and get a cheapo ticket if the game looks like it would be fun to watch! I wonder whether it’s a quieter neighborhood once the weather cools off and the stadium isn’t in use as much.

    • I think even in that price range, it could be a challenge to find something. Prices in Navy Yard and Waterfront are pretty obscene right now. Is there a reason you’re gravitating to that area specifically?

    • BabyAssociate :

      Under $1500 seems very unlikely in that area, but $1700-1800 would probably be doable. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of the area. There are a lot of new bars and restaurants, but I find it seems a little….suburban? Sterile? A friend recently moved there from the Dupont area and it took her a little to get used to, she thought it felt further away from everything, even though it’s really not, but she likes it now.

      • Yea, if I were in my mid-20’s I’d definitely be gravitating more toward a NW neighborhood like Shaw, U St, or Columbia Heights.

  9. Hi everyone,

    Just wanted to make a plea to call your Congressperson or Senator to fight this latest unconscionable healthcare bill. Until pre-existing conditions are covered (a status that includes everything from asthma to cancer to even organ *DONORS*), Senators who vote on this should be ashamed to offer a bill so cruel and appalling. Consider taking 5 minutes to call and voice your opinion – maybe you care more about low-income individuals, or adults under 65 who are not eligible for medicare or medicaid or women’s health issues. Whatever it is, please speak up. Remember that they work for you and will only know what their constituents think if they tell them to do so.

    202-224-3121

    • Anonymous :

      Can someone post a 2 min summary of the healthcare bill that I can read here – rather than some formal article? Is there a CBO score/numbers on how many would lose insurance/price increases? Is there a written bill or will they vote in secret on vague ideas? Also how many votes needed – and can’t the 3 from last time be counted on to vote no again – or do there need to be more nos?

      • https://www.cassidy.senate.gov/read-about-graham-cassidy-heller-johnson

        No CBO score will be available until next week, and it’ll only be a partial one that will not explain how many and how Americans will be affected because they don’t have time to get it done.

        Rs hold 52 seats in the Senate. Reconciliation allows them to pass a bill with only 50 votes (plus the VP’s tie breaker). Right now, it’s confirmed that there are not the votes to pass it, but they’re going to bring it up on the floor next week anyways and try.

      • health bill :

        CBO hasn’t had time to do a full score, but estimates around 32 million would lose coverage. Bill basically ends medicaid expansion and redistributes funds already distributed to states who opted in to states that didn’t (which doesn’t just include blue states. Kentucky, for example, opted in, and would have to send some of its funds to wealthier states that didn’t). Gets rid of pre-existing condition protections – if you’ve had a baby, cancer, or a number of other disease (including things like acne) you could be charged significantly (i.e. in the hundred of thousands of dollars) more for coverage.

        This is a really, really, really bad bill.

      • I am not a policy wonk, but from what I have read and can gather for you now…
        – Votes needed: 50 if they pass it before September 30 (so that it can be under the reconciliation tool, which means it does not have to be bipartisan); that’s why it is essential we call and voice our concerns now.
        – The CBO cannot give a full score because this deadline is too tight. That is even more reason why this is unconscionable – voting on something without knowing how much it costs? How very unlike the party of fiscal responsibility! (ahem, Wisconsin’s Senator, shame on you.) The current estimate, though, is 30 million Americans will be without coverage.
        – Pretty much every major patient group, however (AMA, etc.) has come out against this because the reality is that insurance groups are for-profit institutions and will be allowed to not cover pre-existing conditions or will be allowed to not lower premiums or will be allowed to cut Medicaid coverage.
        – As of now there will be two hearings: one before the Homeland Security Committee and another in front of the Senate Finance Committee. Again, they will not have a CBO score to present at either of these.
        – While the party line is that this gives states freedom, it also means that states will be getting far less money than they do now, so they will likely be able to do far less with it.
        – This means that almost certainly premiums go up. It also means that without the encouragement for healthy people to sign up, it will be more expensive for nearly everyone (if you can even get coverage).

        – More quick and dirty:
        – Generally speaking, the uninsured will increase. Insurers will be allowed to discriminate based on pre-existing conditions (whether your state lets that happen or not is purely guesswork). Premiums will likely go up for middle-class. No guarantee to stop lifetime or annual caps.
        – Current estimates from the Center for American Progress: $17,320 more in premiums for pregnancy. $26,580 more for autoimmune disorders. $142,650 more for patients with metastatic cancer.

    • Already called both today; calendared for daily calls until any vote.

    • My senator wrote the bill, so I doubt my call will talk him out of it :-(

      • I don’t know if this is true or just a rumor, but I saw online that Murkowski’s office said they’re interested in hearing from people outside of Alaska, if you want to try them.

      • Please call him anyway. You are his constituent! Doesn’t he want your vote? What he says and does is acting on your behalf, if you disagree with it, tell him so! (Even if it doesn’t change his mind; after all, if no one ever tried, no one would ever change their minds.)

      • Call call call. I am in a solid blue state that is trying to kill this bill and those before it and i still call to express my thanks for them doing this. It takes two seconds and can’t hurt

        • Anonymous :

          I’m in a solid red state and have been saying with every call, “I will NEVER vote for Senator Whosits if s/he supports this bill.” I wouldn’t anyway, but I don’t spell that out.

          One of my senators has a gross, treacly campaign ad prominently featuring a medical emergency his wife experienced. So I figure it’s fair game to remind his staff that he campaigned on healthcare issues and this is a bill that would potentially have bankrupt his family had it been in place when her event happened.

  10. Y’all reminded me in the earlier threads. Does anyone have recs for dermatologists or plastic surgeons that have done laser scar removal on faces? NYC. HALP.

    • I haven’t had that specifically done, but I have had a cyst removed from my neck. My dermatologist (Cybele Fischman, Financial District) referred me to a plastic surgeon (Nina Naidu, Upper East Side). I was very happy with the results – no scarring at all.

  11. Pretty Primadonna :

    This suit is SICK, in the best way possible!

  12. BFF Breakup :

    So my BFF (who is a straight man) and I just cut ties for an indefinite period of time. We dated about two years ago, he reached out a couple months after that ended and we’ve been in a weird pseudo-relationship for about a year where we’re hanging out all the time, are each other’s +1, but he doesn’t think we are dating. I keep falling for him and have been trying to prevent it, but I decided this afternoon that I just need to go cold turkey and cut all ties for an indefinite period. I want to get married and have a family ASAP (don’t @ me for that) and I feel like I will not find that guy if I’m still pining over him.

    I’m so sad though. What do I do?! I honestly feel like I just chopped off my arm and don’t know what to do with myself. Helppppp.

    • You did the right thing. Big hug and best of luck!

    • Shots. Shots. Shots. :

      Bonjour. Congratulations on washing this man right out of your hair. He was not your BFF. So, for starters, you locate a female friend or don’t, get yourself looking cute, and join me at the bar. This will suck for a while. I can’t be there for you every night for health reasons but tonight/this weekend I am ALL IN.

    • Congrats on making such a big step! In 6 or 12 months, you’re going to look back and be SO SO SO happy and proud of yourself for this step. I was in a relationship where I was head over heels for the guy, but he wasn’t on the marriage and family page. Breaking up with him just about killed me. The first week I was in a fog, the first month was gray and lifeless, the second month was a little better. I met my now-fiance 6 months after breaking up with him. I look back and honestly thank God every day that I didn’t end up with that other guy. My fiance is perfect for me and we are so happy together. For now, distract yourself with whatever means you need (Netflix, wine, cookies) and allow yourself to grieve and then look forward to the good that’s coming your way <3

    • I’m sorry. You made the right decision, but it’s going to be tough initially. You’ll miss him, but it will get better. Rely on your friends and do what makes you feel happy.

    • Anonymous :

      A friend who would keep you in this kind of limbo for this long is either being somewhat selfish or somewhat clueless. Or both. Though it hurts, you did the right thing.

  13. Cycling ladies, please hit me with:

    -your favorite bibs
    -any recommendations for places to get jerseys that are (i) not covered in loud designs/pro team logos (my friends all like the Shebeest jerseys but most of them are waaaaaaay too loud for my taste) and (ii) not gut-wrenchingly expensive. Basically, Rapha aesthetic but not Rapha price, if that is possible.

    • I have to put a plug in for Airofin, a UK based company that started up about a year ago. Really great quality stuff. You can use my code Brandy10 for a 10% discount!

      I have also enjoyed Louis Garneau and Pearl Izumi.

      Also, try checking at theclymb . com – they have a lot of big brands at discount (it’s a members only type page). If you want to send me your email I can send you an invite. Some really nice looking Castelli jerseys that sound like what you are looking for in the $40 range.

      • And apparently you will get $10 off if you use my invite to theclymb

      • Awesome – that price point is super. I’m riding 5-6 days a week at this point and I cannot be washing the same two jerseys every other night, but they get suuuuuper pricey. I’m at my username at gmail!

    • Mary Ann Singleton :

      Vanderkitten all the way. Most comfortable stuff I have ridden in, and a small US owned business with a really good guy who’s the founder. I can get you a discount code if you see anything you like on their website. :) I get a ton of compliments on the Vanderkitten kits, and they have several that are not very loud in color (check out the Revelation kit).

      (Full disclosure – I’m a brand ambassador, but that’s just because I love the brand and the kits. I don’t get any $ from them.)

    • cycling gear :

      I own Pearl Izumi and Specialized bibs; I’ve been happy with the quality of each. All are “dropper” bibs, which is to say that you can use the bathroom without removing your jersey/taking the straps off your shoulders. I do think bottoms can be pretty susceptible to individual tastes and bodies, tho–I don’t feel like the chamois placement is quite right on any of my bibs (feel great when I try them on, sit bones land not on the chamois when I’m actually sitting on the bike), and I think the answer is to just keep trying different pairs until I find what works for me.

      For jerseys, I tend to peruse the sale sections at Performance Bike and Competitive Cyclist. There’ll be lots of options in lots of colors and you can grab what appeals. I second the rec for Castellli, and I also have a Lexi Miller (sells direct online only) jersey that I think is very attractive (but $$$).

      Also worth noting:

      Roka generally has decent sales (25-30% off) if you’re on their list. I don’t have experience with any of their cycling stuff, but I do have one of their wetsuits and some runing gear which I’ve been happy with.

      Coeur Sports had quite a good end-of-year sale last year; I suspect it’ll occur again if you’re on their mailing list. Lots of their items are louder (though more to my taste than Shebeest), but they’ve also got some plain black stuff and bibs with a side zip on one of the legs (another bathroom solution). I’ve been happy with the quality of their gear in general, their customer service is excellent, they’re woman-owned, and their packages come with a note an occasionally a freebie (I got some really nice socks once!).

      • Awesome, thanks! Yeah, bottoms are a (no pun intended) PITA to order online, because the fit seems to be so inconsistent even within the same brand sometimes. I will say that once I tried bibs I became a total convert to that over non-bib shorts, but they can be super-pricey.

        I was a longtime runner until I started cycling, and the general aesthetic of running clothes seems to be way more low-key than that of cycling clothes. In my city, lots of dudes still go with the full-on pro team kit, and I’m fascinated by the teams they choose. Like, there is a cadre of 3-4 guys who you see around town in complete Quick-Step kit (down to the socks and the gloves), and there is also this guy who you always see in Liquigas gear even though Liquigas folded a long time ago.

  14. Anon for this. I am waiting to hear about “next steps” for a position that I would give up cheese for. (I love cheese, a lot) It would be an exciting, intellectually stimulating, fun new challenge with a ton of new responsibilities. AND A TON MORE MONEY. And I hate waiting. I know I’m in the mix. I know I’m a great fit. I know that they have heard great things about me. It is so hard to focus instead of pinning new apartment stuff or things about the new city into a secret pinterest board. Anyway… PLEASE PLEASE keep your fingers, toes, everything crossed.

    • Good luck!

    • Something to momentarily amuse you while you’re waiting: I initially interpreted “cheese” in your first sentence as a euphemism for money, and then I got to “A TON MORE MONEY”, and I was confused.

      And then I realized, “Oh, she means actual, literal cheese!”

      And then I thought, “Oh… oh wow, she REALLY wants this!!” I guess in my mind, money = meh, cheese = SO IMPORTANT

      Good luck and good vibes your way!!

    • Anonymous BigLaw Associate :

      I hate bibs, so can’t help there. I like Capo, but it is a little expensive. Cheaper brand I like is Louis Garneau.

  15. Baconpancakes :

    Anyone else found that repeated gel manicures really did a number to their nails? I started getting gels to be able to keep a manicure nice despite pottery class, and loved always having gorgeous nails, but the past two or three times, when they soaked the gels off, my nailbeds started to burn, so I just removed the polish at home and am left with really weak, pathetic nails. Is this normal? Is there any way to rotate regular and gel manicures to avoid this, or should I just save gels for vacations and special occasions?

    • Wildkitten :

      I have a theory that this is because the mancurist files your nail plate before putting on the gel, and don’t think it happens when I put gel on myself at home (I don’t file the nail plate, and the gel doesn’t last as long, but I prefer a shorter manicure to a filed nail plate.)

    • Yea, I’ve found that but I don’t really care because the nail cycle is pretty short – it only takes mine about a month and half to completely grow out & then they’re fine. So I don’t worry about it and just do gels as long as I’m in the mood for it.

    • Yes, this is my experience. I value having nice, strong nails, so I save gels for special occasions.

    • Yes. I don’t know if the gel is even more suffocating than regular polish or if it’s just so much harder to remove or what it is. But I save gels for special occasions for this reason.

    • Anonymous :

      Yeah, those things are not good for your nails. That’s pretty well known.

    • Yup, gels do a number on your nails. Removing them at home seems to have helped because I just let them soak for an hour or so until they’re really soft (not the 15-20 minutes plus filing they do in salons). My nails also grow super fast so it doesn’t really bother me, but for friends with weak nails they’re basically stuck in a gel cycle or have to bite the bullet and let their nails regrow over 6+ months.

  16. Not That Ellen :

    Ooooh… I bought this dress and jacket last year in the teal color but the purple is also gorgeous! I’m petite and curvy, and I had to have a lot of length taken off sleeves and hem, but otherwise, it fit great in my usual size. It was a splurge but I received it as a birthday present. Can’t recommend enough – it looks great on!!

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