Weekend Open Thread

Steven – MelaneeSomething on your mind? Chat about it here.

Admittedly, I am late to the brogue/oxford party — they’ve been in stores for more than a year and a half, and so many chic New Yorkers wear them all the time with skirts and dresses. Yet I’m still hesitant about them for a conservative office — hence my weekend recommendation. I like that they have a higher vamp than flats, making them easier to walk in, and I think they can look amazing with tights. This pair from Steven is on sale today at Zappos — was $99, now $68.77 (available in black, brown, and olive leather).  Steven – Melanee (Black Leather) – Footwear



  1. Sale PSA:

    Ann Taylor is doing 40% off all sale items w/ code EXTRA40. Can’t find anywhere when the sale actually ends.

    I picked up a t-shirt, button-front shirt, slacks, and cardigan for about $140.

    • I got a belt for $12! The sale wasn’t as good this time around as it was the last time. Most of the blouses were only marked down to $49.99, and they usually have several that are $39.99. Of course, since I won’t start working until August, it’s probably for the best that they weren’t marked down any lower…

    • Boston atty :

      I got one of their gorgeous statement necklaces from the winter that are sold out everywhere except at a few stores. The $7.5 shipping was worth it because I paid $30 for the necklace (originally $128). If anyone is interested, it’s this one: http://www.anntaylor.com/p-29076.shtml

    • I picked up this dress: http://www.anntaylor.com/catalog/product.jsp?productId=30018&N=1200043&categoryId=349&pCategoryId=3944&Ns=CATEGORY_SEQ_349&Nr=AND%28CAT_SALE_FLAG%3aY%29&Nty=1&No=14&loc=TN&defaultColor=Black&defaultSizeType=Regular

      It’s not as short on me as it looks on the model (I’m about 5’6″ and it hits just above my knee), and I was excited to find a dress that actually has some sleeves.

  2. SF Bay Associate :

    PSA – in searching for a trench with a zip out liner, I had ordered and returned London Fog’s Iridescent trench from Nordstrom:
    http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/london-fog-iridescent-double-breasted-trench/3097637?origin=styleResultsPager_next The wine red color was gorgeous, but the S was sadly too big for my small bust and narrow shoulders.

    I just found it again at Sierra Trading Post in petite sizes:
    on sale for $112, and you can stack two codes: SITESAT311 for 20% off, and AVMARCH1 for another 25% off off $125+ (or, extra 20% off with UOUT), and ebates for another 2.5% rebate. Shipping is pricey ($15 for the XSP and SP coats, plus $7 to return one/both of them), but I am rationalizing it by my stacking coupon codes. With the two discount codes, the coat was $84 (plus shipping), instead of retail $250.

    Fingers crossed for success!

    PSA2: always check retailmenot.com for coupon codes before you buy anything online, and always use ebates – that extra 2-6% back really adds up.

  3. Visiting Tulsa :

    Any suggestions for places to stay and things to do in Tulsa? BF and I will be traveling there for a long weekend sometime this spring to visit family and would like to make the most of it.

  4. I hate my job. I hate being a biglaw lawyer. That is all.

    • Anonymous :


      Hope you have a good escape plan because living like that sucks.

      I’d take you for a beer if I could.

    • Boston atty :

      Agree with Anonymous above. And as a fellow biglaw lawyer, totally agree that it tends to suck the big one.

  5. Netflix recommendation: Morning Glory, about a young woman (early 30s) working her ass off trying to make it as an executive producer of a morning show. I saw it last night and thought Rachel McAdams gave a good performance that reminded me a lot about my job in biglaw… sometimes almost too much. It’s not often we see a hard working, smart, career-oriented woman character in movies that isn’t an awful person, secretly desperate to get married/have babies, or an ice queen. Her character is a corporette.

    • lawyerette :

      Cool! Will have to put that in. Thanks!

    • LOVED IT. She reminded me…so much of myself.

      I also appreciated that the love story was peripheral – so many movies about young woman are rom-coms, and I liked that the romance was present but not central.

    • Thanks for the recommendation. I’m home for a week alone with my 2 year old while my husband skiis in the backcountry for a week. A good escape movie is great!

  6. Footloose :

    Another shoe question —

    What kind of shoes do people wear on the weekend? I am a fan of wider leg pants, and have trouble finding casual, comfortable shoes that are weekend appropriate but still a little cute. Sometimes I wear my Cole Haan work flats, sometimes I wear fashion sneakers, but have you found anything in between that would look good with jeans and a sweater but still allow me to walk as much as needed? Although I think they look good on others, I am not looking for riding boots . . . Thanks!

    • Danskos. I love them.

      • Second the Danskos. They’re pricey, but they last exactly forever. (I live in the Pacific Northwest, where it is not uncommon that we have moisture on the ground all four seasons. Danskos are waterproof, too, which is awesome.)

        • Danskos are now made in China and among other issues do not have the longevity they used to have. I would recommend looking at Sanitas — they are the original Danskos, and are still using the original factories and sites. Not the widest range of patterns, but I am wearing a “tapestry” clog that has really stood up very well. Price range is the same, last I purchased.

          • Agreed. Danskos aren’t what they used to be.

          • Hmm, I haven’t had any problems with my newer Danskos (I have 3 pairs, one very old, two newer). But Sanita used to be the same company as Dansko, they split into two companies. I agree with the rec to look at Sanitas as well.

    • Check out some of the “comfort” brands like Clarks, Sofft, Born…

      With wide pants, I love flats with a little bit of structure

      or sometimes mules or clogs, depending on how casual the rest of the outfit is

      Too high of a heel sometimes seems off though, so you have to really try on and see.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      I tend to wear more casual fabric flats. I have a few pairs from the brand Blowfish that I got on Zappos that I love.

      I have these in a light gray color that doesn’t appear to be available anymore. I wear them with everything and find them really comfortable. I live in NYC so I walk a lot and they aren’t necessarily the most supportive, but they are comfortable enough.


    • I’m more comfortable in a bit of a heel. I stick to comfortable wedges like these: http://www.zappos.com/softspots-bellina-brownwood-calf?zlfid=111

    • Can’t offer any specific brand recommendations, but I usually go for more fun/trendy flats (think fuschia-pink suede with ruffles or leopard print) and sandals.

      Unless I’m looking for something that I’ll be doing a lot of walking in, I don’t give as much thought to quality/price. Usually these are shoes that I won’t be wearing very often and/or want to be wearing after a few seasons.

    • I usually wear my Me Too flats. You can usually find them at TJ Maxx for under $40, but they are also available at endless, zappos, 6pm, etc. They are very comfortable and have never given me blisters. Some of them are ugly, but they do have some very cute shoes.

    • I like Keen brand shoes (not the sandals, but their closed toed options).

      They have a range from more “sporty” to more “weekend casual” but they’re all really comfortable.

    • Bensimon sneaks. Love ’em.

  7. I love weekends :

    Earlier this week, someone mentioned buying a grey pinstripe skirt suit. If you are reading this, could you please share details or a link? Other ideas also welcome. This item has been on my need list for a while.

    • I have a Tahari gray pinstriped dress suit I bought on sale at Lord and Taylor.

    • That was me. I found my suit on Rue La La ( for $79!). It was a Calvin Klein. Two-button shorter length jacket with pencil skirt. I just wore it to an event where I was introducing a speaker with a yellow top underneath and felt fabulous. Good luck with your search!

  8. I’ve been spending a lot of time this week thinking of hanging a shingle. I’ve been a public defender for several years, and some well-known private criminal defense attorneys in my city have some empty office space in their suite. I’d expect to get some indigent defense contracts from the local courts, and maybe have some paying customers too. (For some reason, in my area, most of the criminal attorneys are solo, with shared office space. There aren’t a lot of firms that do criminal at all. I’m not sure why this is.)

    Mostly right now I’m planning budgets to see if it’s even possible for me. It looks like it’s possible… but some of my friends who are solo talk about a period of austerity in the first 6-12 months.

    Have any of you left a steady paycheck and benefits to hang a shingle? And if so, what was some advice you would have liked to get early in the process?

    • I did it about a year and a half ago. I did it with very little in my checking account. Very scary, but things weren’t working out with my current firm. I was never paid on time, wasn’t paid everything, etc. What helped was that a lot of my current clients went with me (and paid . . .) I realize that’s not strictly applicable to you since you’re in criminal defense. I borrowed money from my parents once to make my house rent, but other than that, I’ve paid my bills every month.

      I would advise keeping your expenses as low as possible. Use your current computer, don’t splash out on a yellow page ad. I don’t know if the office sharing you’re looking at will include a fax, but if it doesn’t, I can’t recommend Myfax.com enough. It’s cheap, makes it easy to work from home, easy to keep efiles, etc.

      I honestly paid a lot of my bills early on by referrals from my former opposing counsel, and also some contract work with them. Contract work is great in your early days, you won’t make a ton, but it’s easy money that will keep a roof over your head. I ghost wrote a lot of motions to suppress, etc. I also did a few court appearances when they had scheduling conflicts. A year and a half later I make much more with my own clients, but it helps in the early days.

      You should network with some of the established criminal defense attorneys in your town. They will probably refer clients to you that can’t afford them, but could afford you.

    • I know the ABA has lots of good resources for solos. Here are some links:

  9. I have a wardrobe question for everyone: I am in law school, and I have a big presentation coming up (I’ll be participating in a debate where I’ll probably have to stand for a long time). I already have a suit picked out: dark gray skirt suit. My question is: what shoes should I wear? I need to look sharp and professional, but I also don’t want to be thinking about how my feet hurt the whole day.
    Thanks for any advice!

    • If you don’t already have a comfortable pair of heels, it’s time to invest. Some options in a law student budget:
      Generally, slightly rounded toes and a thicker heel are more comfortable. Although, avoid clunky heels which can look dowdy. Good luck!

    • Check out the following:
      ( Clarks or Naturalizer- may not be the BEST looking shoe but are, very comfortable- my sister is a Dr. and hates heels- she has a pair of Naturalizers she loves and very comfy.)


      simple, short heel:

      amazing reviews:

      Also- if you like pointer versions- check out Calvin Klein- the dolly. I have al client that is in suits and heels every day, standing often and she practically lives in these.

      good luck!

  10. There are people in ANY city who would wear this with dresses and skirts??!!

  11. Just want to rant about what law school has done to my vision. I’m now stuck switching all day long between one pair of glasses for distance and another for reading/the computer. My doc says no bifocals for a year and no LASIK (if I am a candidate) for 2. Sigh… Anyone else out there with annoying vision troubles?

    • Yes! My poor vision was stable for 5 years before I started law school. Three years in, my vision has deteriorated substantially. I normally wear contacts, but I had to buy a new pair of glasses because my old pair was too weak.

    • My vision improved exponentially during the five or so years after I graduated law school. I went from -450 to -175. So there’s hope.

    • My vision went from bad to worse during law school and the year after that I spent clerking. My prescription doubled.

      …But then the year after, my vision got slightly better.

      And almost 100% of the lawyers I know wear glasses.

      And if you’re nearsighted, an eye doctor once told me that nearsightedness tends to get worse throughout your mid-late 20s and then level off once you’re 30. So that’s good – it may have happened even if you didn’t go to law school.

    • I highly recommend eye exercises…take some time to focus near and then look far (15 to 20 feet), waiting for your eyes to refocus far awat. Do the near-far combo about 10 times every twenty minutes or so. This really seems to help the constant deterioration.

      I am not sure if this helps, but you should also consider investing in a good, big monitor (even if you have to pay for it yourself) to do some of your computer work in larger font. You may have to scroll more, but your eyes don’t have to work as hard.

      Last, talk to your eye doctor about this, but if you get contacts, and wear them, they help “shape” your eyeball such that they can slow your prescription’s increase. My doc said contacts were better than glasses for this.

      Good luck!

      Also, sadly, just an FYI–my vision had gotten worse EVERY year since I graduated college, and got much worse when I worked in biglaw in New York (tons of long merger agreements, all day….). It has never gotten better, but the demise has slowed a bit since I hit 30!

    • Why can’t you do bifocals? I love my bifocal contacts- so much better than having to wear reading glasses or progressives all the time. Even contacts plus reading glasses would be better than switching. What do you end up doing in class? It doesn’t make sense to be stuck either not really seeing the professor or getting a headache from the computer.

      FWIW my eyes did not change in law school, but I was almost 30 when I started so that probably had something to do with it.

      • I dunno I didn’t really understand why no bifocals, but he said no to them for a year. I guess b/c my eyes are having such a hard time focusing, he wants me to switch between the two glasses to give my eyes a rest.

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