Tuesday’s Workwear Report: Fahdi Ribbed Raglan Sleeve Sweater

Our daily workwear reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices.

If you’re on the hunt for a close-fitting black sweater for work, do consider this viscose/poly one on sale (new markdown!) from Nordstrom. Cashmere and silk sweaters can be great for warmth, but if you’re tired of pilling and fuzzing, there’s a lot to be said for viscose/poly — and considering this one is marked from $285 to $171 (all sizes left!), this is a great basic to add to your wardrobe. BOSS Fahdi Ribbed Raglan Sleeve Sweater

Looking for a similar version in plus sizes? I like this sweater by Sejour.

Seen a great piece you’d like to recommend? Please e-mail [email protected]



  1. Ugh. When you come back to a job you dislike after a week away it just seems worse. Although I am more focused today – could just be stress.

    When you have a job that does not have a defined end time, when do you leave? Assuming there are no pending deadlines or other issues, how do you decide when the work can just be done the next day? My team leaves at various times between about 6:30-8, depending on the day.

    • Honestly, when I feel like I’ve done a full day of work. Sometimes that means leaving at 5:30, sometimes it means leaving at 7:30. I rarely stay beyond that if there’s no pressing deadline. There will always be more work to do tomorrow.

    • I base it off when other people leave, to be honest. If some people always leave at 6:30 and some always leave at 8, I’d probably consistently leave at 7 or 7:30 so I’m not known as the first one out of the building. If people tend to leave some days at 6:30 and some days at 8, I’d do the same, based on my workload on a particular day.

      • That’s basically what I do now. After 6 its basically a “respectable” time to leave, and when people start doing the “is my boss still here don’t want to leave before them” dance

    • I take off when I hit a natural break in my work or before switching gears to a new project or a new part of my existing project.

      • New Tampanian :

        Same. There will always be more work. As long as there isn’t a deadline or emergency issue, I leave. There are plenty of nights when that means I’ll be out around 6 and others that mean I’ll be out at 11 pm. It evens out over time. (I’m in house)

        • I am here EVERY day from 9:30 am until 6:00 pm unless I have to file a breif for the manageing partner. I then go home, sign on through my wireless rooter to the Office, and remain AVAILABLE from 6:30 until I go to sleep (about 10:30). I generaly do NOT bill for the evening hour’s unless I do MORE then log on. If I check my e-mail, that is good for 2 billeable hours, and if I respond to an e-mail, that will also be good for 2 billeable hours. However, there are times I do NOT respond even tho I could b/c I am over my weekley quota. If I go OUT, I can NOT do any billeings unless I check my email from my i-Phone. YAY!!!

      • I have an opposite strategy – I’ll leave when I’ve midway through writing a section or conducting an analysis, so that it’s easier to get back into it the next morning. That may relate to the type of work I do (writing is hard when faced with a blank page) or just my love for procrastination (which is helped somewhat when you can easily get back into something the next day, rather than have to start a new task), but it works for me.

    • I leave at 5:00 on the dot. The norm is to do 8 hours (more if you’re very senior, which I am not) and while some people prefer to work late, I prefer to come in early. I send emails in the morning and generally make it known that I’m an early-in, early-out person. I cherish my evenings to myself and my brain is not productive after 6 pm anyway. If you also want to leave early, you’ll need to be confident that you’re doing your full workload and stop caring what other people think. If people judge me for leaving early, I judge them for focusing on exact hours in the office instead of my work quality, timeliness, or productivity, which definitely exceeds that of many people hanging around until 8:00 just for appearance’s sake.

    • Shopaholic :

      I could have written the your first line – time to rev up the job search!

      I’ve set a general time in my head about when to leave – 6:30 for me – so I generally try to leave around then unless I have more work that needs to get done that day. I occasionally leave before that but generally its when I’m not able to function further, so I try to keep it to a minimum.

  2. Anon for this :

    Going anon for this for reasons that should be clear, but I could use some input from the Hive! I recently hired a new attorney in my in-house legal department. She is great, a relatively recent grad, really on top of the work and eager to learn. We also get along personally quite well. She also happens to be exceptionally attractive, and dresses on what I would consider the border of the se%y vs. work-appropriate line. Most of the time, though, it is only “se%y” because she is so attractive. She often wears, for example, stiletto heels, a pencil skirt, and a tight blouse – nothing that I haven’t worn myself (but I’m some years older and frankly not as stunning!). Or fitted but appropriate work dresses, with blazers covering any part that might be less work appropriate (one dress, for example, has a cut-out on the back but I only know that because she mentioned not taking off her jacket! Another had some beading on the long-sleeved cuffs that you could only slightly see under her suit jacket). We work in a highly male-dominated business, and many of the employees (e.g. engineers) are more casual, whereas she and I both tend to wear more formal business wear as does management and e.g. sales. Shortly before Christmas she had what I thought was just a cute outfit on – a turtleneck, slightly shorter a-line skirt, and over the knee flat boots. I didn’t think anything of it, but was told later that it was the source of a lot of discussion among some of the younger men in the company (and apparently one woman as well) at an off-site event (where alcohol was involved). Do I say something? To her? To the people who had been gossiping about her? Or do I leave it be? What would you do? Or, if you are more like my employee – what would you want me to do? TIA…

    • I think you should talk to HR about conducting a legal/HR seminar on gossip and s3xual harr4ssment so that these younger men can be reminded about appropriate office conduct.

      • THIS. So sick of bs. Dinged if you’re pretty, dinged if you’re not.

      • Agreed. There is nothing inappropriate about wearing a turtle neck. If that’s the outfit that inspired the gossip, which it sounds like it is, then HR needs to get involved. P sure there have actually been harassment lawsuits that specifically addressed turtle necks.

      • +1000. Please, dear god, do not take this woman down because sexist jerks in the office can’t be professional. This is not her problem at all and I’m honestly baffled that you would consider making it one. Talk to HR if you must talk to anyone, but you need to stand by this woman.

      • Seriously!! This makes me so angry.

    • If you decide to say something to her, I would limit the conversation to the outfit that was the subject of discussion. Over-the-knee boots are not work appropriate and would have been enough in my office to generate gossip/comments. The shorter skirt, while potentially fine on its own, may have seemed inappropriately sexy with the over-the-knee boots.

      If the rest of her clothes are work appropriate and fit–and nothing in your post indicates otherwise–then I wouldn’t mention them to her. I also wouldn’t mention her being attractive or her attractiveness having anything to do with how her clothes are perceived. Clothes are either work appropriate or not (with the caveat that fit can make specific items appropriate for certain people/body types and not for others).

      • Agree. From what you’ve indicated, this was the only outfit that seemed inappropriate.

      • Somehow I doubt it was the boots that were the subject of conversation among young drunk men.

        • First time I ever heard of over the knee boots was from a guy speculating how I’d look in them. I consider them wildly inappropriate for work, but maybe I’m influenced by the streetwalkers who wore them where I used to live.

          I think the OP should have HR do the seminar, but also make a nonchalant comment to her employee when she occasionally wears something not office appropriate.

          • Never too many shoes... :

            I think there is a difference between over the knee and what I think Shopping is talking about (like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman). When she said turtleneck and flat boot, I pictured something like this…http://www.stuartweitzman.com/products/5050/?DepartmentId=731&DepartmentGroupId=2&ColMatID=263

            And for the record, I think these are perfectly fine for work.

    • I’d say nothing at the moment:

      – For the clothes that are office approp but she just looks fabulous – there is nothing to say. It’s not her fault she looks fantastic in classic office styles.

      – For the OTK boots + shorter skirt outfit – that doesn’t sound office approp to me. But since it’s been awhile I’d leave it be for now. If she wears it again, I’d mention it at the end of the day – “hey those boots are really cute, but they’re prob better for weekends.”

    • I would not tell her about the gossip, but I would gently tell her that over-the-knee boots, stiletto heels and short skirts are not appropriate in your workplace. She shouldn’t have to dress frumpy to hide her attractiveness, but it sounds like she is really not dressing very professionally.

      • Wait what? Stilettos are perfectly fine for the office.

        • Depends what you mean by stilettos. I’ve seen women, even on this board, refer to any non-block heeled pump 4″ or higher as “stilettos.” Clearly, a thin-heeled 4″ pump is not a stiletto and is 100% work appropriate. I think of stilettos as razor-thin, ~5-6″, likely strappy, and clearly not work appropriate.

          • Okay, well your thought is wrong. Stiletto is a type of skinny heel, many of which are perfectly fine, and it doesn’t imply 6 inches and straps at all

          • Right. To me “stiletto” mean a str!pper heel, not just a tall, thin pump.

          • Then your understanding is flat wrong. Stop misusing the word.

          • Hate to be the person who brings the dictionary to the party, but since there appears to be some confusion:

            plural noun: stiletto heels
            a short dagger with a tapering blade.
            a thin, high, tapering heel on a woman’s shoe.

          • Sorry anon at 10:55, but ‘stiletto heel’ means only that the actual heel part of the shoe is thin. The rest is your own opinion you are adding. You are the one who is “flat” wrong.

          • I’m anon at 10:55, and all I think stiletto refers to is a type of heel. I don’t know what problem you have with my comment. I was disagreeing with the person who said stilettos are stripper heels.

    • You should report people making inappropriate comments about her to HR, following your company’s sexual harassment policy; tell them directly to stop if they are making comments in your presence; and say nothing at all to her because she is not doing anything wrong.

      • A short skirt paired with over the knee boots would generate comments and gossip in just about any workplace, regardless of the level of attractiveness of the person wearing them. They don’t need a sexual harassment seminar; she needs to stop wearing suggestive clothing to work.

        • Or they need to behave appropriately. If her outfit was actually not acceptable, that should be dealt with by her supervisor, who just said she thought it was fine, or HR. Not by men gossiping about her looks.

        • Never too many shoes... :

          Meh. I do not see over the knee *flat* boots paired with a turtleneck as a big deal at all. Plenty of women lawyers in my firm wear them. I myself have a pair in fawn suede with a medium block heel that I have worn to work with a conservative black dress. I honestly think the “problem” here is that she is very pretty and wears clothes well. I would be more concerned about the gossip and potential harassment issues than her clothes.

      • The problem is that she doesn’t have to do anything wrong for it to affect how she’s perceived, and thereby her career. Yes, it’s stupid, but she should have the information so she can then decide how to proceed. If people thought I was unserious for wearing a ponytail or something like that, it would also be stupid, but I’d want to know.

        • all about eevee :

          If someone at my job thought I was “unserious” for wearing a ponytail or because of what handbag I was carrying or shoes I was wearing, I would want to know so I could find another job at a company that wasn’t so petty.

          • And if my boss thought it was appropriate to share that with me I’d start keeping a file for my lawyer.

          • all about eevee :


          • Well, isn’t part of being a good manager not hiding information from your employees that would make them want to leave? ;)

          • No, Emmy, it isn’t. Your advice about this really is not good.

          • all about eevee :

            I’m not sure I understand your point, Emmy. Are you saying that managers should share every single negative thing they hear about their direct reports with their direct reports, just so that the direct reports “have the information”? Is that what your manager does to you?

      • I agree with this. OTK boots with a short skirt does seem over the line, but I don’t know what your general dress code is. In some offices this may be fine. I wear the Stuart Weitzman 5050 boots to work sometimes and it’s perfectly work appropriate for my office. You shouldn’t be policing how women dress; men should be able to control themselves and not gossip.

        • Never too many shoes... :

          Pockets! I just posted a link to those boots above saying that those are what I was picturing when OP described the outfit and that I think those are absolutely fine for work. Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman thigh high boots would be different, but I do not think that was what the OP meant at all,

          Also, Pockets, you have great taste.

          • I actually just ordered the thigh-high version and am toying with the idea that they may be OK under a knee-length dress so that no skin is visible. But the more I think about it the more I think it’s Not OK.

            I am thinking about getting the 5050s in another color but they are sooooo expensive

      • +100. If you heard sexually harassing comments, please report them to HR instead of posting on a discussion board.

    • If I were the employee, I would want to know, because no matter how unfair it might be, that sort of thing could affect my career. I don’t think you necessarily have to straight-up tell her to dress more conservatively/plainly (since it’s not a performance issue and it sounds like she is within the dress code), but it would be a kindness to let her know how her clothes are coming across. Then she has the information, and she can make a better decision. It’s entirely possible that she doesn’t really realize it. I’m saying this as a recent grad myself: lots of outfits marketed as “wear to work” are on the s3xier side, and frankly the whole juniors section in most stores makes it had to find clothes that aren’t at least a little s3xy, and that shapes your general idea of what clothes look like. If I were her, I’d definitely want you to say something. (Unfortunately I don’t think you can say anything to the gossipers unless you heard them yourself, but if you do, please shut them down hard because that’s totally inappropriate.)

      • Hm, you do say you were “told later that it was the source of a lot of discussion”–was that more gossip, or someone tipping you off so you could let her know? Either way I do think you should tell her

      • It’s not her clothes. Her clothes, with one exception, are completely fine. She’s just distractingly pretty, and it’s unacceptable to make that her problem

        • Hm, it doesn’t sound to me like it’s so much her prettiness as the attractiveness of her figure, which is more closely related to her clothes (OP, can you clarify?). But to clarify, I don’t think you should make this her problem! I think you should let her know that other people are talking about her in a way that could be a problem for her (and make it clear that you’re not, personally or as her manager, telling her to change what she wears). That’s information that she would probably want, and it sounds like you have the sort of mentor-y relationship where you could give it to her and let her do with it what she wants.

          • Telling her DOES make it her problem, because it suggests that she should take action based on that information. She is not the one who needs to change.

          • That’s making it her problem.

          • You don’t think someone could say, “Look, here’s what I’ve been hearing, personally I think they’re just being turds and I am not going to hold it against you, but I thought you would want to know” and not have it sound like “You should change”? As the employee, I would want to know, even if just so I could avoid those people. :P

          • Absolutely obviously not. And you shouldn’t be putting the employee in that position.

          • When that person is your boss, I think that is a harmful and inappropriate message to deliver. I manage multiple associates, including several young women, and I would never, ever do that. It implies that she should change her behavior, it makes her self-conscious about both her body and about attire that is professionally appropriate by the OP’s account (with perhaps one minor exception that the OP actually *didn’t* think was an exception), and it has a high likelihood of making her uncomfortable around her co-workers. What is she supposed to do with that information? Change how she dresses *even though how she dresses is appropriate*? Change how she acts around male co-workers *even though her conduct is appropriate*?

            The people who need a sit-down with the boss are the people in the office who are making s*xually charged comments about a co-worker. The kind of chat you’re describing is just…wrong. It’s an abdication of the supervisor’s role. No female attorney I supervise will ever, ever be put in that position. I’m livid just thinking about it.

          • Original Anon :

            OP here – cback, I think you’ve hit it on the head, thanks for the reality check. On the one hand, as Emmy suggested, there’s a bit of the juniors feel to her clothes – but she is smart and motivated and will figure it out on her own. other than maybe the boots, nothing inappropriate or even – thinking about it – really borderline. I’ll consider talking to HR if I hear anything inappropriate coming up again. I don’t want to put her in an uncomfortable situation and have it backfire to her – we aren’t a large company. thanks everyone.

          • Late to the party, but my boss told me at my review awhile back that she “didn’t hold it against me” but she “thought I would want to know” that my nose piercing “caused a lot of discussion” around the office. It’s a small CZ stud, not a ring, and multiple people have told me they didn’t even notice I had it for months after meeting me. It’s not against my company’s dress code and I don’t think it’s inappropriate for my business casual office.

            I _do_ think my boss was implying that I should take it out. I don’t know why else she would have said anything. There’s literally no other reason to tell me about this. I’m aware that most people don’t have nose piercings, and that by wearing one I am making something of a statement; I’d have to be an idiot if I wasn’t. But, I DNGAF, and I’m not taking it out. I do good work in a timely fashion and a piece of metal in my nose has no effect on my performance.

            So what I’m saying is, I agree with cbackson.

    • anonshmanon :

      This is difficult. I wouldn’t say anything to the gossipers, but if you happen to be in a similar situation, definitely speak up.
      As an employee, I’d want you to tell me. In fact, I’ve been in a similar place (recent grad, not knowing the difference between “dress to look your best” and “dress professionally”). We had a soft skill seminar that touched upon that topic among others and I have the impression that it makes a difference.
      It doesn’t have to be political/moralist. The main message is that people are human, and the tighter your blouse and the shorter your skirt, the more will people pay attention to you as a person vs your work. This is true for men and women, by the way. Which is obvious not only by the female gossiping coworker, but also by you being bothered by what she wears underneath her visible clothes. So you can also explore a bit why that bothers you so much.

      • It isn’t true for men and women. That’s an absolutely idiotic thing to say.

        • maybe not exactly the same, but I have to say, some of the clothes the 20 something men I work with wear give me pause. I probably shouldn’t be able to tell what “side you dress on” when you are in business attire (to steal a tailor term). I see quite a few too tight for work items on the men too. And I am easily distracted :)

          • ew ew ew

          • This is absolutely an issue where I work. When did too tight, too short pants become a thing??

          • Anonattorney :

            Yeah, I have to agree with this. I feel the same way about shirts on men that are so tight that I see the outline of their chest. It’s just . . . distracting. But I suppose it’s distracting because we are taught that it’s distracting? Dressing professionally is such a conundrum of socialization and mores.

        • anonshmanon :

          In case somebody misunderstood: I was not saying men are subject to the same scrutiny. I meant that it is men AND women who do the scrutinizing of women. Which sucks.

    • Edna Mazur :

      I second the commentors saying that if she is truly dressed appropriately for your office, she is just exceptionally attractive, don’t say anything to her. Shut down the sexual harassment/inappropriate behavior when you witness it and leave the poor girl along to do her job. She shouldn’t have to wear potato sacks so the boys can control themselves.

    • lost academic :

      Sounds like the conversation that needs to be had is with these other people and not her.

    • I honestly can’t believe some of the advice coming off of this board. OP, you need to go to HR, not try to handle this by yourself. You are not this woman’s friend. You are her boss. You are your company’s representative. Anything you say to her you say on behalf of the company. For the love of all that is holy, do not tell your female subordinate that she is dressing too sexy unless she shows up in freaking lingerie. And maybe not even then. Do not get your company sued because you failed to follow the appropriate procedures to address dress code compliance and harassing comments. Insert standard this is not legal advice disclaimer here.

      • Completely agree with all of this.

      • Seriously. OP, have some common sense here.

      • eh, employment lawyer here (management side). been on the HR side, too. HR is not a magic fixer of issues, often just documents the problems before they inevitably combust. (HR is like a match in a tinderbox most of the time).

        If HR speaks to the commenters, no matter how objectively, regardless of whether HR says that pretty girl herself didn’t complain, my experience is that it’s going to be perceived as pretty girl “telling,” and make it more difficult for her WRT the commenters (and probably their supervisor who’s going to be pissed you went over supervisor’s head).

        I’d mention it to commenters’ supervisors casually, like, “I wanted to give you heads up here. I heard x….”

        I’d probably also talk to your subordinate about how it’s unfair, and you don’t personally object to it, but you heard through the grapevine that the OTK boots caused some comments, wanted her to be aware.

        • LOL. HR as a match in a tinderbox. +1000. I wish when I was a new associate at my first law firm, someone told me the worst thing you can do is try to seek advice from HR on how to manage certain interpersonal issues with co-workers. I found instead of helping, they actually collected the information and then gossiped about it to the very co-workers I was trying to improve relations with. Jesus, that woman. I hope she has a miserable life.

    • It sounds like you yourself don’t think her clothing is inappropriate, and given that, you absolutely should NOT say something to her. You’re in a supervisory role, and the people who need supervising are the others in your office who’ve been gossiping about her. Their behavior is inappropriate and unprofessional.

      • Completely agree.

      • cbackson, you are always the voice of reason. Thank you.

        • This whole thing makes me want to RAWR in a major way.

          • Late, I know, but what if the OP did not “inform” the employee in a “serious talk” way, but did make a comment about the creepers or used some other perjorative that makes it clear the fault/problem is theirs, but also alerts the woman, if she didn’t already know?

    • Is it appropriate to report employees to HR for something said outside of the workplace? Isn’t that what the OP mentioned…. off site event? Or maybe I don’t understand that terminology.

      I’m a little surprised how many people say this should be reported to HR. Of course, we don’t know the details of what they said… I guess.

  3. Superficial request – I want glasses that make me look attractive. All glasses make me look severe and nerdy and I want to look awesome and nerdy. Any ideas?

    • Veronica Mars :

      Is there a local/independent optical shop near you? Mine is amazing. You walk in and they look at your face and select the frames for you that look the best. It’s wizardry. Sometimes the experts really do know best.

      • +1

        I have no idea what looks good on me and am overwhelmed by the choices. I let a fashionable young man pull glasses for me. I love what I have now.

      • I’ve done that last year. The glasses they’ve picked do look good on me. But I want to look pretty in glasses. Like A Lady.

      • I would do this again, take photos, then go home and “sleep on it.” I’ve worn glasses practically my whole life and new shapes always look jarring at first. But after a while, I can see how they compliment my face.

        • I do that, too. I never purchase glasses on the spot. I take pictures, visit them a few times, poll everyone, disregard their opinions, and purchase what I like. But it’s so frustrating, I hate glasses (I wear contacts, too, but sometimes need to give my eyeballs a rest).

      • YES. Do this. My local place is called HeidiOptics and it is The Best.

    • What’s your face shape and colouring?
      What colours do you normally wear?

      • I wear all colors. And I have large features. Everything is large. Square-ish/rounded face.

        • all about eevee :

          What is your hair color and eye color?

        • The general rules of thumb for glasses selection – if you are looking for complementary fit then follow these, if you want your glasses to stand out then go the opposite!
          – If you have rounder face go for angular glasses, and if you have an angular face curved shapes will add softness. Heart shaped faces look great in cat eye, ovals can wear anything.
          – The brow line of your glasses should gently mimic your own brow line. For example if you have very arched brows a straight glasses line can look awkward, where as something with more curve such as a gentle cat eye will generally be more flattering
          – Shorter faces should go for shallower glasses, longer/larger faces can wear larger frames (think about it as the % of your face taken up by your glasses)
          – Warm tones suit warm toned frames (brown, amber, gold details, olive, and purples/pinks with warm undertones), and obviously cold tones suit colder tone frames (such as gunmetal, silver, black, icy purples and pinks, blues and greens). Tortoiseshell comes in so many shades now it can be flattering on pretty much everyone.

          That should give you some place to start, browse online – some companies will have technology where you can put frames on your photo to virtually try them on. Then visit an optometrist and trust their advice. I work at an optical retailler and spent 3 years as a regional trainer, after some time you can look at someone and imagine a frame on their face – that is what they are there for!

          • Ooops – missed one thing based off of Anon @ 10.13 – re closest to hair colour – if you have differing tones or a neutral undertone you should go with your most overwhelming feature. For example if someone has waist length ice blonde hair and warm brown eyes I would colour tone match to their hair. If you have very short auburn hair and piercing cool blue eyes I would bring out the eyes with cool tones.

    • I find glasses look less severe on me when they are close to my hair color.

    • Try Warby Parker!! They have the take home try on option or you could just go to a store nearby – they have a few in DC and NYC – idk about other cities. The staff is super helpful and they have so many options. I got a pair last year and love them. I plan on getting a second pair sometime this year to mix it up

      • More LOLZ. I have a pair. I hate them. All of their glasses are fugly chic. And they don’t sit on my snout properly – they’re plastered against my eyelashes. Which wasn’t the case on the trial pair but when I got my actual lenses put in, they were much thicker and just uncomfortable. I have to juggle between sinus pressure and blinking.

        • So, can’t tell if you’re just joking in your persona…but are you Asian (and having written that I realized that Godzilla the monster is sort of Asian… :))? Even if not, there are glasses made for “Asian noses” which are flatter. Usually metal frames with adjustable nosepieces are best, but you can also get “Asian style” plastic frames which have bigger nosepieces.

          • LOL no, not Asian. I have big eyes. And “normal” length eyelashes. I don’t curl them so they’re more horizontal. And if I wore mascara, I really couldn’t blink while wearing glasses. I tend to stick to glasses with nosepads because of the whole sinus/eyelash thing.

            Also, piecing together what I look like based on this thread is kinda hilarious.

          • I’m trying not to piece it together because then I can’t picture you as a green monster, which is what makes me happy when I read your posts!!

          • ponte python's flying circus :

            Oh gosh, and here I’ve just been bending my metal frames into the right shape for my flat nose-bridge-less face.

            OP – are you using the super-thin high-index lenses? I find that helps take a great weight off my nose.

          • CountC, I am a green lizard monster3tt3. Don’t let anyone tell you differently.

            PPFC, my current pair is high index lenses in thick metal frames to mimic the hipster chic aesthetic. I get my nose pads adjusted regularly to fit my face. But when I drop a half grand, I want spectacles that bring me joy.

        • lost academic :

          YES THIS. I hate them and I’m so tired of people thinking they are THE thing to recommend (especially people who don’t even KNOW what they look like, and people who don’t even wear glasses themselves). They are so fugly and massive. I do have Prodesign frames (Danish firm) and they are the first frames outside my norm in my whole life. They seem to have a really wide range of frame design and color.

          Separately I also have a problem with my eyelashes rubbing my lenses. All the time. Don’t wear mascara for that amongst other reasons.

          • I’ve had prodesign frames. They’re very nice but I want something else.

    • Marshmallow :

      I just got these and I am totally obsessed. http://www.lenscrafters.com/lc-us/miu-miu/8053672442397

      I have several nerdy pairs from WP but there’s something about the cat-eye shape and gold wire that reads more feminine and trendy to me right now. I switch up my glasses and also wear contacts a lot, though, so these are just for style and not every day.

      • Those look interesting. I’ve always wanted cat-eye and then they never look right.

      • I once read that the top frame of your glasses should mirror the shape of your eyebrows. I have really pointy arched brows, and I love cat eye frames, which are a similar shape.

      • pugsnbourbon :

        Uhhh these are amazing. I was just talking to my coworkers about new glasses (some folks spent those sweet HSA funds) and I love these.

    • I’m in the same boat (I have a pair of Warby Parkers that I have since realized are not flattering – I’m striving for geek chic and ending up somewhere near dorky). A woman at my office has thin, gold-colored wire frames that look great on her. I’m going to look for something similar and ditch the heavy black plastic frames.

    • Try a red frame. Not like, fire engine red, but a darker red. I have had red specs for two pairs in a row now. I thought they would seem over-the-top, but they just feel like a neutral now and I feel very glam. A slight cat-eye works for me, or just wider at the top than bottom. Too rectangular and I feel that severity of which you speak.

      • I’ve done dark purple, current frames are a medium dark brown. Haven’t done red in decade, good call. Would look great against green skin.

        • anon anon armani :

          I got a transparent grey frame recently. Does well with brown-greying hair, brown eyes, and olive skin. I wanted the secretary but feminine look and needed longer lenses to help with looking down and reading…. been in progressives for at least a decade now. Found these, Calvins. The transparency avoid the really dark black, blocked, too KraftWerk euro look. Much more feminine.


          I’m going back and also getting these. Certainly the blue is not as vibrant as in the picture, but I’m also considering the wine…


          Good luck… it took me forever to find a shape to replace my tiffany frame which is now not “long” enough for reading. this page has tons of the brand in a variety of shapes.


    • lucy stone :

      Godzilla, Costco actually has some great designer frames. I have two pairs of Furla frames from there that I love and regularly get compliments on. I have the exact opposite coloring of your lizardy self but I’m sure they will have something for you too.

    • Anonymous :

      I have these and they’re really flattering: http://www.zennioptical.com/487615-acetate-full-rim-frame.html

      I don’t normally like frames like that, but they’re a little smaller than normal and are comfortable. I get lots of compliments on them.

    • Anonymous :

      Are you by any chance in Chicago? Eric at Eyelines in the Loop is really good at helping pick out eyeglasses.

    • Anonymous :

      I am a little bit late to the eyeglasses party, but I will add some suggestions here, since over the years I have collected many pairs (mostly colorful) and have had a lot of fun with them. I have dark brown (now greying) hair, dark brown eyes and fairly thick (slightly caterpillarish) eyebrows on a medium, oval face. I hate wearing make-up, so I let my eye glasses be my make-up. I also don’t like huge, fugly glasses, but I do like funky glasses.

      A few brands to consider:

      Selima Optique (has shops in NYC and you can buy some styles online. I like that it’s a fairly small business, and they will do some customization (I got them to make a frame I liked in a material that was only offered standard for another design, and it only cost about $2o more).

      Salt Optics. I got a lovely pair of bronze, metal frames that are super-lightweight and fairly neutral without being boring. But they don’t have anything exactly the same now. I do like the Cynthia, Elaine and Jane models.

      Brooklyn Spectacles. I got a really interesting pair from their “wood” collection (Collette) from this company. The “wood” is actually cellulose made to loo like wood. They are incredibly lightweight and comfortable, with an interesting and understated texture. The only negative is that they stretch a bit with wear, and so I need to take them back to the store for a bit of tightening every six months or so. But they are one of the most comfortable pairs of glasses I’ve ever owned.

      LaFont: I’ve had two pairs from LaFont in the past ten years or so. They have a large collection with some interesting designs that aren’t as big and heavy as Warby Parker.

  4. I’m hoping for advice from some other lawyer ladies here! I’m a mid-level associate and, while I like practicing law, I’ve realized that I really miss the academic side of law. One of my New Year’s goals is to try to start writing/publishing legal articles in my area of law. But, I’m not sure where to start and the attorneys I work with don’t write or publish much. Are there any lawyers here who have written/published articles, or see the value in doing so? How would you suggest a junior attorney start? How do you come up with topics or find places to get the articles published?

    • Is there a local/state/national bar association that focuses on your practice area? Or even a subsection of a general bar association (think ABA) that puts out publications. You can start there and see what opportunities there are. I’d also look at publications such as trade journals and newspapers that are aimed at non-lawyers.. You can also do client alerts on new cases or regulations that have come out and send those to your firm clients. Make sure they are published to your firm website as well and that they show up in web searches. Is your firm big enough to have a marketing director? They can do the legwork as far as finding opportunities.

    • I’ve published a couple things. One was legal issues for horse owners, which was published in a magazine. The other pieces were in law journals. There are several that are tied to law schools, and I suggest starting there–but not with the actual Law Review. Start with the other journals at Tier III schools and build up from there.

  5. Help: favorite work-appropriate skinny black ponte pants for an apple shape? My all-time favorites were these amazing unicorn pants from Costco that I got for a ridiculously low price ($14?), but they no longer carry my size and I’ve lost enough weight that my old pair is now too big. Sad face. I definitely want pants, not leggings, and am having a hard time finding this item again. I broke up with low-rise pants long ago but other than that I’m open. Thank you!

    • Someone on here suggested Lord and Taylor brand ponte pants which are quite good, though not a perfect replacement for my own holy grail black ponte pants no longer made (Kors ponte black pants that had real pockets, zip and button and were a substantial ponte). The Lord and Taylor have skimpier pockets (can’t put the phone in the pocket) but are a decent replacement until the new holy grail pant is found. The thickness of the material is similar.

    • JuniorMinion :

      Macy’s charter club brand has a number of options appropriate for work.

      • Tech Comm Geek :

        I was talked into trying on a pair of the Macy’s Charter Club skinny leg ponte pants. I’m SO an apple, and I’m long waisted, with very short legs. These pants FIT. I definitely recommend at least trying them on.

    • Old Navy pixie pants! I swear by them

      • Sloan Sabbith :

        I’m loving Gap’s bistretch ankle pants. They’re not ankle length on me (5’3″) and seem to be holding up better than my pairs of Pixies.

    • Congrats on the weight loss!

    • lucy stone :

      Macy’s Alfani brand has some good pull on selections I like and they are washable. (insert heart eyes emoji here)

    • I tried a pair of White House Black Market ponte pants last year and thought they were pretty good. Real zipper and button and a nice heavy weight. The only reason I didn’t buy them was that they were a dark bottle green color that I LOVED, but could not justify owning green pants. I still kind of regret not buying them.

  6. Looking for recommendations for places to stay and things to do for my 30th birthday trip! My SO and I are heading to Los Angeles for four days and Maui for a week in early March. Both early 30s — we love good restaurants, breweries, and exploring. Flights are booked but nothing is otherwise planned yet.

    For LA — Where would you stay? Anything particularly interesting or cool that you love but may not be at the top of the TripAdvisor list of Things to Do?

    For Maui — We especially need recommendations for places to stay. We’ll arrive on Monday and leave on a Sunday. We’d like to do the Road to Hana, so we’re also looking for a recommendation for somewhere to stay in Hana. Any particular activities that shouldn’t be missed?

    • My top must-sees in LA are the Getty Center and the Getty Villa. Visit LACMA and hear the LA Phil at the Disney Concert Hall. Take a trip out to Pasadena to visit the Norton Simon museum and tour JPL. Watch a TV taping.

      • Endorse the Getty Center and Villa. I had long wanted to see them but other things always intervened on my visits to the LA area. Finally made it last summer on a really short visit.

      • And Pasadena/San Marino for the Huntington Library! MUCH better than the Norton Simon. Pinky, Blue Boy and gardens. Sigh!

    • Breweries: Downtown LA is thick with them. Try Mumford and Arts District Brewing. Angel City and Golden Road are not great, and definitely don’t bother with Bonaventure.Worth a visit on the west side, especially if you like sours/wild ales, is Firestone Brewing – stop in after an afternoon at the beach.

    • There’s great Chinese food in San Gabriel and the surrounding area if you’re spending a day in Pasadena already for the Norton Simon/JPL. The Huntington Gardens and Library out that way are lovely too. Old Town Pasadena is a downtown-type area, in that there are bars and restaurants and shops in a mile or so area you can walk around. That could be a whole day, really!

      Olvera Street by Union Station is touristy but cute. You can walk from there to Grand Central Market which has lots of cool and trendy food. You’d also be right by the Bradbury Building, which is just so great.

      The Geffen Contemporary Museum is right by little Tokyo, so there’s good food and fun walking there for before or after the museum.

      If you want to get weirder, the Museum of Jurassic Technology is fun. I love the Brea Tar Pits, too. And the MOMA is right by the Tar Pits, and you can get good Ethiopian food nearby.

    • Maui – I don’t know that you want to stay in Hana. As I recall there are a few dinky hotels/B&Bs but not much else. I’d get through the waterfalls part, past Hana, as quickly as possible and do the rest of the route (you are supposed to do it clockwise). The South side of the island was WAY more interesting than the waterfalls. See if you can find Lindbergh’s grave, the bamboo forest, and the seven sacred pools (there are not seven, nor are they sacred, but they are still neat). Plus you can go from rain forest to desert to grazing areas all in several hours.

      We stayed at the Ritz in Kapalua – not much around but acres of lush grounds and lots of privacy and quiet, unlike Kaanapali, which is basically a long stretch of high rises and not very beachy in my opinion. There is a board walk that goes from the Ritz into the condos and we rented snorkel stuff and snorkeled on different empty beaches off the boardwalk most days. There is a Kapalua shuttle (free) that will pick you up anywhere in Kapalua and take you back to the Ritz Carlton. Pineapple grill in Kapalua was amazing.

      Did a day trip to Oahu for Pearl Harbor and the Dole Pineapple Plantation (Hersheypark but with Pineapples). Ate at a teensy little places called Helena’s Hawaiian food in Oahu that was ah-mah-zing. $20. Kind of a dumpy area but worth the trip. The people were great too.

      Hawaii is great because you will likely have a car and can get around. Check out the fancy schmancy hotels in Wailea. Eat at Momma’s Fish House (if you are in Kapalua it might make sense for that to be dinner on your way to the airport – it’s far). There are lots of places to buy snorkeling trips, swim with turtles, all that kind of thing, so talk to your concierge. I hate magic shows but we saw an awesome (and boozy) one in Lahaina. We stayed away from Lahaina for dinner most nights and opted for more local places – Star Noodle was a standout.

  7. Hi All
    Question – I had an interview (second round) at a biglaw firm, major city, for a staff attorney type position. Thought it went as well as it could have, no major red flags. Next day, get email from recruiter (not the firm one, an outside one) saying that the firm has put my application ” on hold”. I’ve seen postings for the job out there, new, since my interview. I asked the recruiter like, what does this mean, and no response. I just want to know if this is a no. I’ll be fine if it is, i’m okay with my current job and won’t be heartbroken, just don’t like the lack of finality.

    • Probably it’s a no. I’d at least consider it one for now. You usually won’t get as much finality as you want. Think of it as a nice no.

      • +1. It’s a nice no. And it sounds like you need a new recruiter, since it’s his or her job to communicate this to you.

    • Your application specifically, or the entire hiring process? Either way, I think you should consider it a no for your own peace of mind–move on, and then if they decide to hire you after all it’ll be a nice surprise.

    • It means you’re not a definite “no,” but they’re holding out to see if they get other candidates that they prefer.

  8. I sweat profusely in polyester (like this sweater.) Does anyone else? This is why I stick to natural materials (though I have some modal/cotton blends that are ok.)

    • I’m a heavy sweater, especially in synthetics. I stick to natural fibers. I’ve also switched to a crystal roll on deodorant and I sweat a lot less.

      Woolovers has beautiful natural fiber sweaters for a lot less than this.

    • Yeah, no poly sweaters for me! Become a literal sweat-er. Ha.

  9. Calling the catladies! :

    Hey Hive! Before Christmas I posted about adopting a tortie. Thanks for all your name suggestions! I settled on Moon. I’m a first time cat owner and she seems a good fit for my family. At ten years old, she knows the routine – uses her litterbox, doesn’t mind her carrier, scratches only on her posts, etc. My only issue is that the nights have been ROUGH. Her foster mom used to let her sleep in the bed. For various reasons (mild allergies among them) she is not allowed in my bedroom at night. The rescue suggested that I confine her to her own “safe space” with a litter box, food, water, multiple sleeping options, and toys. I’ve put a Feliway diffuser in there and spray her bed and the blankets on her couch with pheromone spray too. She has an entire spare bedroom to herself and gets an intense play session followed by a meal before bed but cries ALL NIGHT. It’s been five nights so far. Will this subside? She knows how to open my bedroom door so unfortunately I cannot just close her out of the bedroom, I have to actually contain her in another space to keep her out. Thoughts would be appreciated as I’m new to this! She gets complete run of the house during the day and has tons of enrichment (multiple trees, feeder toys, windows with birdfeeders, playtime whenever I come home from being away).

    • Persevere!!

      • Calling the catladies! :

        Thanks! I suppose I just need encouragement. I know this is completely irrational, but I love animals and almost fear that I am somehow being inhumane when I hear her in distress. I am used to dogs who admit defeat and accept closed doors more readily ;-)!

    • It will get better! It took my cat about 2 weeks before she was quiet through the night and not crying/scratching at the door. It was a long two weeks with very little sleep, but you just have to be super dedicated and not undermine yourself. Don’t check in on her, don’t approach the door to her room, etc.

    • I got a cat earlier this year who had had a previous owner (I have no details about the owner or her life there) and had lived at the shelter for a few months. We decided that we didn’t want a pet sleeping on our bed because my husband is a light sleeper and I tend to have allergy issues if pet hair gets on the pillows. The first night, we closed the cat in the bathroom overnight per the shelter’s advice, but for the rest, we let her have free rein everywhere except the bedroom. We closed the door to the bedroom for a few weeks to let her get the message. She still meowed at night, but we discovered that leaving her toys out was causing this. She’d go get a toy and bring it outside our bedroom door and meow away. Now, she doesn’t get any toys at night, but she does have a large window to look out of, several pillows and comfy places to rest, and gets extra playtime from us before bed. We are able to leave the bedroom door open now and she meows either very minimally or not at all. The other key is not to talk to her or pet her at all if you get up to go the bathroom and she’s there. She’ll meow around my feet then, but I just ignore her until the morning when it’s “ok to play.” This was hard for me to do too (as a fellow animal lover, I hate to think she might feel ignored or hurt), but she seems no worse for the wear and we are much better cat parents with good sleep. You’re doing a good job; keep it up and thank you for adopting a fellow older cat!

    • lost academic :

      You’ll have to persevere, but cats are strongly attracted to that space given how strong your scent there is. Kitty jail though can’t be permanent – it might create a much larger problem than the one you’re trying to solve. For both your sakes, I’d hope that your allergies will fade with regular exposure to her and that she can access your bedroom in the near future.

      • In the meantime, why not put a small latch on your door? Keeps kitty out and lets her have free reign of the house to settle in where she pleases. Part of the issue may be that the spare room is not a room she is used to outside of being locked in there at night.

        • Calling the catladies! :

          Could you clarify on the “kitty jail” idea? My allergies are not very severe but I cannot have her sleeping on/near my face as she would if I let her in my bed at night. Why do you consider it “kitty jail” to have her in a large room with all of her comforts at night? I am asking this honestly. The rescue recommended it and she has plenty of stimulation in that room at night if she needs it. She is also very accustomed to the room and it is not associated with punishment – I feed her there, we play there, she voluntarily sleeps on the couch there during the day, etc.

          • lost academic :

            It’s a term used by feline behaviorists I’ve heard. I’m certainly not an expert (nor are most rescues) but it’s my understanding from reviewing this that the confinement in a single room, no matter how great you think you’ve made it, can create the behavioral issues that worsen over time. Her actual comforts and your perception of her comforts aren’t necessarily going to totally overlap and based on the time of day are certainly going to vary. It’s not clear how much space you have outside of your bedroom nor is it clear how much she has access to when you are sleeping, though none of that may really matter to her.

        • Ymmv, but this would not work for me. My cat can’t open the door, but he can scratch at it, bat at the knob, slide his paw under the door to bang it in back and forth, yowl like he’s dying, etc. If I need him to be out of the bedroom at night, he needs to be secluded somewhere away from my bedroom door.

          • +1. When we had cats we had no choice but to lock them in kitty jail at night. They would throw themselves at the bedroom door and ripped up the carpet under the door.

        • I agree that you might have better luck if she had free access to the rest of your house that’s not your bedroom, rather than being shut in the other room. This certainly varies from cat to cat, but mine are completely terrified of being shut in anywhere. Closed doors are generally scary, but when they’re shut in, it’s much worse, even if they’re shut in with us. Of course, you might then have the problem that she cries at your door instead, but it’s at least worth a try. After months and months of howling, we finally gave in and just let them sleep with us, but that sounds like it’s not a good option for you.

        • numbersmouse :

          I agree with the latch on the door idea, but for an additional reason: you need to be consistent about not letting her into your room, including during the day. Otherwise, kitty won’t understand why she is suddenly not allowed into a place that she was just playing in an hour ago.

      • What? She’s not living in “jail” she’s sleeping in a spare bedroom at night. That’s a completely reasonable long term option. Cats do not need to sleep in your bedroom.

    • Fix your door so she has free roam of the house at night. (a lock, perhaps?) If she’s engaged (remember, cats are nocturnal) she might not cry so much.

      • Calling the catladies! :

        The door isn’t broken… I am a renter so making hardware repairs is a last resort.

    • First of all, thank you so much for adopting an older kitty! :) She sounds awesome.

      I find that sometimes some gentle physical intervention can help. I had a foster who would insist on jumping on the bed and rubbing his face in mine several times at night. After 3 nights of pushing him firmly off the bed whenever he did this, he got the message and stopped. Maybe try firmly pushing her out of your bedroom? (and get a latch on the door)

      • Calling the catladies! :

        I worry that responding to her in any way (even if the response is pushing her away/carrying her off) just reinforces the bad behavior. The first night I let her have free roam of the house but she kept opening my bedroom door and running in. I kept putting her back out and closing it. This cycle went on and on and on. For that reason I settled on the second bedroom idea.

    • I’ve been fostering cats and kittens for a few years, so have experienced this. If she gets the full run of the house during the day, don’t confine her at night. Keep your door closed to keep her out of your room, but let her have the run of the house at night like she has during the day. She feels safe all over the house, so no need to give her a “safe space” at night. It’s probably having the opposite effect – she feels trapped at night.

      • +1. Fix your door so she can’t open it. There is no reason a cat should be able to open a properly functioning door.

        • It is 100% properly functioning – she can open all of the doors in the house from the outside (obviously not from the inside because pulling open is a lot more sophisticated than pushing). They have flat handles and I am a renter so I cannot start replacing them all.

          • Buy a rubber doorstop and put it on the inside of the door (which is the bedroom side rather than the hall, if I have understood you correctly). Then she can hang on the door knob all she wants and the door won’t open. Remove in the morning when you get up.


          • So another honest question from a new cat owner – is it seriously less stressful for her to do it this way? Sure, the rubber doorstops will likely work without me having to make hardware changes. But then she will be able to hear me in the bedroom all night and will most definitely spend weeks crying right there. Isn’t it more relaxing for her to be where she can’t hear me and doesn’t have the potential to get as worked up?

          • Nothing about being locked in a room is relaxing for her, as evidenced by crying all night. Let her have the run of the house at night. She may cry at your door, but she’ll tire of it and will go off to explore another area of the house. Cats are nocturnal and it’s to be expected that she wants to be with you at night. But I doubt that she’ll ever like being confined. A kitten who only knows nighttime confinement is a different story – this cat is 10 years old and is fearful of being locked up. Give it a week or two with her being free at night, I promised it will get better!

          • Calling the catladies! :

            I mean, the reason why I stayed with the second bedroom option after trying the closed bedroom door option was because she seemed less distressed. Yes, she cries in the second bedroom. But she cried the same amount outside my bedroom door and also almost physically hurt herself ramming the door open repeatedly. The scratching and ramming don’t happen in the spare room but do happen outside my door when she can hear me. So, I will try the doorstops but it honestly seems like that option is worse for this cat. Or maybe I don’t know anything, which is also possible.

          • Is it a two story place? Could you use a baby gate to keep her on the first floor? We do that with our cat but he is fat and can’t jump the gate. A normal sized cat probably could.

          • lost academic :

            It’s not necessarily about hearing you – it’s quite often about the space that smells mostly like you. Plus, I’d be surprised if your house was so large that she couldn’t hear you even in the room you use for her at night given a cats’ hearing. At the end of the day, though – what is your primary goal? Is it just for her to not sleep on your face/near your head? Is it to not sleep in your room? What’s the most important thing for you to accomplish for your health and how can you do it while preserving as much of her space for her as possible?

        • My cat can open lever-style handles. They were the bane of my existence as a renter, to the point that I walked out of an otherwise perfect apartment because the landlord wouldn’t change/let me change the handles.

          • We swapped our lever-style handles on our doors because our cat can open them. We didn’t tell the LL. We’ll replace them when we move out.

    • Moon! That’s so cute!

    • Sydney Bristow :

      My husband can’t sleep with my cat in bed, so when we moved in together we had to keep her out of the bedroom. She could freely go anywhere else in the apartment. We bought a tall baby gate and leave our bedroom door open. It took a few weeks for her to get used to it.

      • Calling the catladies! :

        Any rec for the baby gate? I’d like to try this. She’s 10 so probably can’t jump over it.

        • Sydney Bristow :

          We got this one 4 years ago and it works nicely: http://a.co/4iPzWWh

          Seconding the advice above that you’ll want to keep her out of the bedroom all the time so she isn’t confused as to why she is allowed in there sometimes. The gate makes that really easy.

    • numbersmouse :

      Good on you for adopting a middle-aged cat! Besides fixing your bedroom door and being consistent about keeping it closed even during the day, I have to ask if you feed her in the morning? I find that my cats are much more disruptive at night when they associate me getting out of bed with being fed. Instead, I feed them before I go to sleep, to create a positive association in their minds.

      • So, Moon is used to getting one small can (or half a large can) of wet food everyday and then dry kibble too. The foster mom used to feed her in the morning and then leave the dry kibble for her all day. I have been giving her half the can in the morning (this is all she’ll eat in one sitting and the rest goes to waste if I leave it out), but her kibble in balls during the day and hide them around the house (she seems to like this), and then give her the other half of the can before bed.

        • numbersmouse :

          I would maybe put the kibble in the balls right after the evening wet food portion, and then try to move morning wet food to noon or early afternoon. But of course, it depends on whether someone will be around to feed her at such an inconvenient time.

    • Did she come from living with other pets by chance? My cat and dog sleep together, and if one or the other is not there, the other gets super needy and suddenly want to sleep with me (hard no, no pets in bed).

      • Nope, no other pets in the foster home. Maybe before that though? I don’t know the details of her life per-surrender.

    • Can you let her sleep in your room but in her own bed? She’ll jump up on your bed at first but will get the message when you keep pushing her off.

  10. Any advice for dealing with getting laid off in big law?

    I have my annual review today. My hours were so bad last year (and there was so little available work–the partner I work for just didn’t have enough work and he and I are the only attys in our office that do our niche practice) that I think there’s a decent chance I get laid off. Or maybe given an ultimatum to get my hours up by x date or I’ll get laid off. It might be a good thing so I get the kick in the pants to find a job where I actually am needed. I’ve delayed doing that bc I’m on reduced hours (two small children at home) and anything else with those hours will pay a lot less. Anyway, I’m nervous and hoping to get the review over with.

    • I don’t have a lot of personal experience in this, but from what I’ve heard big law firms are usually very accommodating to those they lay off. You’ll get a long time to find a new job while still being “employed,” great letters of recommendation, and they will generally bend over backwards to help you. One friend’s firm retroactively gave her the lockstep pay raise (for which she didn’t qualify because she was getting laid off) to hide the fact that she was getting laid off from her future potential employer. I wouldn’t be that worried.

    • Lay offs in Big Law are usually pretty soft. My firm typically gave people at least six months to find a new job and often assisted with the job search, so in many ways it’s much better than being laid off at many other employers. In this case it sounds like your low hours really weren’t your fault. Can the partner you work for go to bat for you? Does he expect more work next year or does he just really not have enough work to support an associate? If it’s the former, you (and ideally he) need to go to the meeting armed with a list of work you expect next year that will get your hours up.

    • Have your previous reviews been positive and is this the first year that the hours have dropped off? You might do better than you think you will in the review. Be prepared to answer questions about your hours and what you think the reason is. Fingers crossed.

      In the event that this going to be a bad meeting, just focus on surviving it (your reviewers aren’t enjoying it either). Take notes since that helps from getting emotional and also helps you accurately capture what is being said, particularly if there is a performance improvement plan being discussed. If the decision has already been made, then don’t be afraid to ask to have some time to process the information and set up a future discussion when you’ve had some time to think clearly.

    • Anon for this :

      You’ll get through it and probably will come out better for it. As other commenters have mentioned, Big Law is a decent place to get laid off. I was told that I had six months to look for a new job, and would remain on the website, etc. but would not be given any billable work. I was also given free services to a career coach, who turned out to be invaluable. I used that time to aggressively job search and landed up with my dream job (in gov’t). Like you, my issue was low hours which wasn’t my fault. Best of luck, you can do it.

    • How low were they? My firm minimally expects 1850 to remain in good standing, but most associates fall around the 2000 hour mark. One year my hours were only 1700. I went into the meeting convinced I was going to get laid off. I was not only laid off, I was promoted to the next class year because they recognized the low hours were an anomaly. I second anon at 10:36 that it might go better than you expect, if your performance is generally well-regarded. Good luck!

      • *I was not only NOT laid off….

      • I agree. As long as an associate is relatively well-liked the firm will try to keep them, even if it means shifting the associate to another department, or getting them overflow work, etc. This becomes more difficult as you get more senior, but seniority opens other options, like maybe a counsel-track position with an hours and pay decrease.

      • My hours were just over 50% of where they should be. BAD… Going into the review process the partner I work for advised me on which people I should request to review me, saying these people know how much he relies on me. He has been slow too. We are a specialist service practice. I can’t really get shifted to take work from other partners since my niche is too specialized. I guess my fate depends on whether the firm wants to maintain our niche.

        I haven’t seen him in the office yet today, although he has sent me emails to do things.

        It’s so demoralizing not having enough work.

    • It really depends on the firm and the office. I got laid off due to hours, too. It stunk. Everyone had low hours (even the partners) across the board and the case two of us associates were getting our hours on was lost by a partner who screamed a lot. Apparently, he wasn’t just miserable for us to work with, but the client thought so, too. We had a change in management that decided to clean house (but not partners) and a few of us were laid off through no fault of our own. It was ‘generous’ but not as generous as I have heard other firms do, with 6 months. Ours was an initial meeting about hours early October, during which it was noted that even though all associates had low hours, they would start assigning work to some associates (including me) to get them even. Two months later, the hours were great (200 hours/month), but I learned that our fates were already sealed by the first meeting because come year-end I was told my hours were low … despite significant improvement, even during slow time over the holidays. Turns out the first meeting was just for their documentation purposes. Meanwhile, I had been busting my a$$ to improve my hours. I should have been interviewing (seriously – I was sort of casually). I of course didn’t get a bonus and was given 3 months to find something else. If I knew the initial meeting was really it, it was 5 months, but instead I was told to work, work, work, which I did, only to get the axe anyway. Anyway, I found something else and am significantly happier at my new firm – and I feel smart and useful and awesome again. I’m extremely happy, but it really took me a while to feel better.

      My advice to you would be even if you aren’t laid off today, if you feel the slightest feeling in your gut that you are on thin ice to start looking for another job anyway. Go somewhere where you are needed and respected and you will flourish instead of living in fear.

      • Good advice. This “I was told to work, work, work, which I did, only to get the axe anyway” is one of the reasons I despise Big Law so much. You’re great until suddenly you’re not and then BOOM you’re out the door.

    • One thing I haven’t seen mentioned in the above, is that you might have some room to negotiate. I knew someone who was laid off from Big Law, and she was on a work visa. They initially gave her three months to find a new job, and she was able to negotiate it to 6 months, full time, at 1/2 pay, to enable her to find another job and keep her status in the country. And now she’s in-house in some bank or something and very happy.

    • It sucks. You’ll cry a lot. It will feel unfair, particularly because so many of the objective reasons were outside your control (how can you get more hours if the partners don’t have any work to give you). It will feel personal, because there were no objective reasons given. So the only thing left is your personality. You’ll try and rack your brain as to what you could have done differently. They’ll never give you an honest answer as to the reason why. And the next job probably won’t need you any more or treat you any better than this one. But somehow, you’ll keep marching on, doing the work, staying in the industry, because there is a certain calculus that makes sense. Therapy, time, a non-work goal that monopolizes your spare time (run a marathon?), and someone who loves you, adores you, thinks your amazing and will remind you daily are the best things you get if it happens.

  11. I need some help getting my work clothing situation under control. My work situation recently changed (combo of fewer days in the office + more casual office when I do have to come in) and I’m trying to pare down my overflowing closet of work clothing. I’m trying to limit myself to 10 work outfits. If you had to make 10 work outfits, what combination of skirts/dresses/tops/sweaters/cardigans would you keep? Assume I have one of everything in every color. My uniform is either dress+cardigan or skirt+silk top & cardigan or sweater. My “base” color is usually black or gray, and my accent colors are generally yellow, purple and burgundy.

    • I’d go with mostly dresses but instead of doing a massive purge, could you do a capsule wardrobe (designating 10 outfits and putting the rest away)? I’d be concerned that you’d pick out ideal outfits and then find they don’t work as well in real life and need to start shopping again, i.e. skirt wrinkles terribly, sweater is starting to pill. As you decide outfits need to go, rotate ones in from storage. Alternatively, could you try and wear everything in your closet before repeating to help you weed out the duds?

    • I wouldn’t go about it like this. Instead Id start moving the clothes you actually wear to one side of the closet, and gradually getting rid of stuff that just doesn’t make the cut.

      • Agree. I would do a sweep of your closet to purge anything you don’t want any more. Do you have anything in your closet that you routinely skip when you’re trying to find an outfit? I find that to be especially true with multiples. I don’t try to hold myself to a set number of items/outfits but have found that having some variety among similar items is hugely helpful. For instance, I favor jewel tones and have cardigans in maroon, purple, emerald and navy but none of them are the same cut. Perhaps looking at the shapes that you have will help you narrow your focus?

        • +1. If you don’t love what you’re wearing AND love how you feel when you’re wearing it, it’s time to go. Pay attention to how the clothes make you feel and what about them you like. That might help narrow your wardrobe to pieces you enjoy wearing.

      • I’ve been sort of doing this. Last year I turned all my hangers the other way (so that the open part of the hook faces out) and would turn them back the right way only once I wore the thing hanging on it. So I can identify all the things I haven’t worn in a year and those are out. That leaves me with things that I wear, like, once a month, or that I wouldn’t reach for immediately because I have a “better” version of it, so I only wear it out of guilt (i.e., I paid money for this, it should get worn). I think those things should go too. I’ve identified 6 dresses that fit me well, are high quality, and are basic in that they are classic colors and don’t have trendy details. I think everything else has to go.

      • This. I periodically pick a type of clothing (e.g. skirt, dress, PJs) and pare down by not putting clean ones back in until I’ve worn everything and discarded the items that I no longer liked.

    • numbersmouse :

      I’m not 100% sure I understand your question, but I like to organise my clothes by sets of 3. I’d keep 3 dresses, 3 skirts, 3 tops, 2 cardigans and 1 sweater. That’s really 12 outfits, not counting the cardigans and sweater variations, but I think it’s a reasonable amount of clothes.

  12. Rain boots :

    I’m searching for a new pair of rain boots to wear when I have to run errands/commute on really rainy days.

    I’m debating between Hunter wellies and Bean Boots. Thoughts? Other suggestions? My concern about the Hunters is that they seem big and heavy. My concern about the Bean Boots is that they seem so trendy right now that I worry about them going out of style.

    • I just bought a pair of bean style boots from sperry and I love them. Super comfy and great grip.

      • +1 – I think the bean style boots from Sperry have slightly nicer color options. Plus if you have small feet you may fit into the kids size, which is certainly cheaper.

    • I think Hunters are more comfortable than Bean Boots (I have both). You could also purchase the “packable” Hunters which are lighter weight and more flexible – not sure if they’re as durable as the originals, though.

    • I think of Bean Boots as being the ultimate timeless boot, at least for snow. Personally, I don’t think they’re the greatest as rain boots because when the heels get worn down, they don’t have good traction on wet tile floors, but if you don’t heel-strike as hard as I do or aren’t going places with tile floors, that might not be an issue. But I like that they lace so my feet don’t rattle around inside the way they do in some rain boots, and they’re very comfy. I’ve never worn Hunter boots but they seem like a college girl thing to me. Is that just me? I went to college with the Hunter boot set but I don’t work with them, so that might be throwing me off.

    • Lazy lawyer :

      I’ve had the same pair of bean boots since high school in the mid-90s, so I have a hard time seeing them as trendy. I wear mine for dog walking, yard work, or casual errands only, and as the poster above noted, the traction is not great. I have a pair of Hunter-like boots (tall, solid color) that I wear when I want to look slightly more put-together. I can’t remember the brand, but they’re not heavy, have a slim/sleeker profile, have good traction, and are somewhat attractive (as far as rain boots can be). So if you want actual rain boots, hunters are not your only option.

    • Delta Dawn :

      I got tall glossy Hunters last year and hated them. They were heavy, they were so tall on my leg that it was difficult to walk, and they didn’t stay glossy very long. I learned that the rubber “blooms,” which means it dispels this powdery dust that sticks to the boots and is only removed with vinegar/baking soda/cursing.

      However, I replaced those boots with a short matte Hunter pair, and I LOVE them. They only come up to mid-calf, so they’re not so tall and heavy that they impact my walking. They’re matte, so the rubber doesn’t get all sludgy looking. And they’re adorable. So, if you go with Hunters, I recommend shorter matte ones.

      • My glossy Hunters also got hazy. I used ArmorOil car wipes on them and voila! Glossy as new! And they’ve stayed that way!

    • Hunters hit at a really uncomfortable height on my leg. I am 5’3″, sure, but this isn’t a problem I have with any other knee-high boots. I have both bean boots (unlined) as well as a pair of ll bean wellies (normal height that is just fine on me) that I wear on rainy days. I’d say that on a rainy day, I wear the duck boots 7/10 times. I will even wear them on a summer rainy day (again, they are not lined) because I like that they are shorter. On colder days, I simply wear bigger socks. I love how easy they are to get on and off, which is probably why I reach for them more than the wellies.

      By the way, I have had both pairs for 10+ years. No leaks, no cracks, no problems.

    • Just a few general comments about Hunters I’ve learned – if you’re short like me and they hit in too high on your leg, take a look at their Huntress style. The shaft is a little shorter, but still a tall boot.

      For ladies with smaller shoe sizes, see if you can order your boots in girls sizing. Some sizes convert. They’re less expensive and also don’t come up as high on your leg.

      Lastly, if your glossy boots get hazy, I’ve found Armor All automotive wipes is the best thing to bring them back! Gets rid of the hazy and restores the glossy shine much longer than Hunter’s own spray does. (This also works great on patio furniture that gets hazy!)

      • +1 to the kid’s sizes. I am 5’1 and also found the normal Hunters to hit too high on my leg to be comfortable, but the kid’s version is perfect. I wear a 5/5.5 and bought either a 2 or a 3. The height is perfect.

  13. Anon for this, sorry for the length. I was recently (two weeks before Christmas, the day before the firm holiday party) laid off from the law firm I’ve worked at for almost five years. It was totally unexpected and poorly handled, which really, is par for the course at this place. I’d been gradually becoming increasingly unhappy there for a number of reasons, and had started putting feelers out for a new position, but was going to wait until my year end review to make a final decision, as the holidays seemed less than ideal for job hunting. I’d been starting to work with a recruiter, but given the current situation, I need to explore all possible options and find something, obviously ASAP. Ironically, the main reason I hadn’t looked harder previously was because I felt guilty and disloyal for doing so. Apparently, I’m a sucker.

    I’m still just so angry about how this all played out. Low hours were the main issue, and that was completely outside of my control. My former boss had the gall to tell me that, despite the fact that I consistently performed above my class level, he didn’t think I was happy practicing law, and that they were “doing me a favor” by letting me go so I could go off and discover what I was really meant to do. Ok, yeah, or maybe take some accountability and realize that the firm itself is the bigger issue? They don’t seem realize they have a lot of unhappy associates.

    I worked in a specialty area of law, and my former firm is a boutique that did just that type of law, in a secondary market immediately proximate to a major market. A few former co-workers at my level made the jump last year to V100 firms, and that or something in-house was my goal – I don’t know if the unemployment makes that feasible now. I do have permission to say the separation was mutual. Looking for some advice from the hive regarding the process, as the job I lost was my one and only legal position (was a law clerk at former firm my 2L summer, stayed on as an associate). Specifically:

    1. An attorney friend mentioned that it’s typical in these situations (a long term relationship that is no longer working out) for the firm to give the attorney a time frame to find something new. Since they didn’t do this (and barely even gave me severance), she suggested that I ask them to allow me to say I’m still employed, at least for January. Is this reasonable? It doesn’t seem like a big ask. How do I go about doing this – should I ask to remain on former firm’s website? Would prospective employers check to see if I was on former firm’s website?

    2. I’m working with a recruiter. Should I work with more than one, even though they seem to be mentioning the same positions? Lots of the law firm job postings (including those specifically discussed by the recruiter) mention that they don’t necessarily accept applications from third parties – should I be applying independently? What’s the best process here?

    Again, sorry for the lengthy post, I’m just super concerned about this whole not having a job thing – I’ve never been laid off before, and I don’t want to end up in a job that pays less or that I hate more because of that. Has anyone out there managed to move on to a better position after being laid off?

    • I was laid off from Biglaw in 2008 (as a 2nd year associate). Devastating. Had a few short-term contract positions over the next year but nothing concrete or satisfying. Started to wonder if I’d ever get my foot back in the door. Ended up with an AMAZING opportunity in-house – I wouldn’t have searched for it if I’d still been gainfully employed, so unemployment ended up bringing me a treasure. I started that job exactly one year after losing my Biglaw position, and I’ve been there ever since.

      I can’t even describe how much happier I am now than I think I would have been if I hadn’t been laid off and had stayed in Biglaw for many more years (which was my plan).

    • In-House in Houston :

      Just work with one recruiter. You’ll end-up pissing them both off if they find out and if they both submit you for the same job, it could turn into a battle with which one gets the commission if you get an offer and it could just wind up getting your offer pulled. And yes, ask your firm to keep you on the website and let them say you still work there. It’s an easy request and one they should honor considering the way they let you go.

      • I disagree with this, when my husband job searched he used three recruiters. This is NYC so it’s a large job market, maybe in smaller job markets it’s different.

        • I’ve worked with multiple recruiters. I was just up front with everyone about who I was working with and where I’d applied. You have to stay on top of where they’re sending out your resume, which I personally like anyway.

        • If she is in a secondary market next to a major market (like for example Delaware), then work with just 1 recruiter. The market is too small and all the recruiters are aware of the same openings anyway. So the recruiters will be stepping on each others toes to recommend you to the same firms for the same jobs. Just make sure whoever the recruiter is, they are one of the better ones.

          • Unemployed OP :

            I’d be looking in either the secondary market OR the major market. Actually, the major market would be an easier commute for me, and probably pay more. How do you know who is a good recruiter?

    • I was in a very similar situation (suddenly terminated for low hours, little severance, no warning, no time to find a new job). To your first point, it’s not ethical for the firm to say you’re working for them unless you’re actually working for them (I got this from my employment attorney). The firm may not know or care, in which case, great and not your problem. But if they do, maybe you can negotiate something where you do a few hours of work for them a week and they can say you technically still work there.

      You don’t have to accept your severance. Look at it as a negotiating point. You can probably get more just by appealing to their conscience. I got two extra weeks’ pay by threatening litigation (unique to my situation and I burned that bridge bad, but that bridge wasn’t too stable to begin with).

      To your larger point – it’s not easy, and you may have to accept that you’re going to get paid less than what you were paid. But I don’t think unemployment makes it impossible to jump to a V100 firm or another prestigious job. Have a 2-sentence reason for why you left that makes you and the firm look good. I said that there was insufficient work to give to two associates and I was junior, so I was let go. It happens, and I think in this economy people are pretty understanding of that.

      • Unemployed OP :

        I think I may be too late on the severance front – I’ve already signed the release because I didn’t realize that it was negotiable, although now they’re asking me to get the release notarized, ugh. It’s also not a huge specialty market, so if I end up working in the same region (as opposed to the proximate major market), I’ll probably end up interacting with my former bosses at some point, so I don’t want to burn bridges and make that situation uncomfortable (I’m watching the second season of Broadchurch right now, and the relationship between the two lead attorneys comes to mind, hah).

        It’s a thought to use the poor severance to appeal to their conscience in terms of leaving me on the website or creating an arrangement where I can call myself “employed” for a few months, though, hmmm.

        As far as a two sentence reason, how does “Insufficient work, and the firm is shifting more to [area] of [specialty], whereas I am more interested in pursuing [other area] of [specialty]” sound?

        • I think your reason sounds fine, although you have to be wary of giving a reason that will make them question why you just didn’t stay until you found a new job. I would start with, “The firm was transitioning to Y when I want to do X, so there wasn’t enough work to keep me busy.”

          I would also go on some “practice” interviews with places you don’t really care to work at. I knew from the start that I probably wasn’t going to go work at another private firm, but I applied to and interviewed at maybe 5 small firms to test out my interview pitch. If you’re like me you haven’t interviewed in a long time, and it’s good to practice and see what works.

          Don’t get discouraged. I got three job offers, all of which were equal to or better than my prior job. Granted my prior job was pretty low-paid, but it really did work out for the best for me.

    • 1. Yes, definitely ask. I’d ask for three months of being on the website in the hope that you get at least one.

      2. I’d go with one recruiter (I’m in a big city but it’s still considered not good form to use multiple recruiters), but I’d also leverage your network and ask them for help. If a classmate or former co-worker makes you aware of a job opening, I”d submit your resume directly through that person (or that person’s contact), rather than using a recruiter for that job.

  14. I just turned thirty, and I’ve got weirdly poppy, creaky bones — specifically shoulders and foot. My upper back pops on a regular basis when I sit back on my chair or adjust my posture when standing, and my toes ache until I wiggle and pop them. I feel like I’m about a hundred and six.

    Anything I can take or do to manage this? I wondered if fish oil would help. That’s all I’ve come up with.

    • Hi it’s your doctor pls come see me.

      • Welp. Thank you for this; I actually hadn’t thought about that.

        In that cas, TJ: any suggestions for a doctor in DC?

    • My knees do this, sometimes on every step. I’ve always assumed it’s because I am a runner. It’s never bothered me enough to see a doctor about it, but I get what you’re saying about feeling old.

    • Go see a dr. and ask for blood work. It could be something like low vitamin D – super common on the east coast esp in the winter bc there isn’t sun for months.

    • +1 on “go see a doctor and ask for blood tests”. It will help elimimate/confirm arthritis (early stage; check whether there is a precedence in your family), hypermobility (loose joints; very common and the bad symptoms usually appear after hitting 30). Anyway, think positive & sending good karma to you!

  15. Any suggestions for an optometrist in DC?

    • Anon for this :

      Yes! Dr. Benjamin Teller in Chevy Chase (right outside DC). Specializes in more difficult patients (he was one of the few doctors who would fit me in my RGP lenses) but good for anyone. Highly recommend.

  16. When did make-up start becoming a “requirement” for women? Didn’t there used to be stigma and judgments against women who wore make-up with a focus on wanting women to appear fresh-faced and natural? I’m curious at how this history has worked. Did your mothers and grandmothers wear make-up and if not, where did they grow up?

    • Make up is still not a requirement for women. I literally never wear it and many of my friends don’t either. My mom also never wears make-up. One of my grandmothers wore lipstick occasionally, the other wore a full face of make-up.

      • Oh, I don’t either and neither does my mom. I’m curious though because I see article after article suggesting that it is a requirement, which I don’t agree with and which I’m trying to understand.

        • Link to these articles? I’ve seen beauty magazines discuss make up, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen it written out that make-up is “required” for women to wear, so I’m curious.

          • LOL, seriously? It’s been posted and discussed extemsively on this site before along with links to articles about how women who wear make-up get paid more (I think it was in the Atlantic)? I’m 90% sure that there have been several posts on this site about how women “should” wear make-up at work with the usual agreement and dissent in the comments.

          • That doesn’t mean “requirement”. That means data shows that women who wear makeup get paid more. The OP was making it like the articles were saying “Women must wear make-up in the workplace.”

            And if we’ve discussed it extensively, then why is the OP wondering about it?

    • Good make up would make you look fresh faced and natural. Some of us need that help. My 5 year old saw me applying concealer and asked what it was for – I said it was so my eyes didn’t look so tired. She looked at me after and said I still looked tired. Thanks kid, maybe try sleeping through the night and I can save the cost of new concealer.

      As for history – mother and grandmother both worked in nursing. Limited make-up when in clinical setting (maybe foundation/powder/mascara). Regular make up when teaching nursing students (add lipstick/eyeliner/nail polish).

      • Ha ha ha–I tell my kid the same thing when she asks why I wear makeup. So I don’t look tired. And then I silently add, because you run me ragged and refuse to let me sleep.

    • In-House in Houston :

      In my industry (Legal), make-up isn’t required by is the norm. I’m talking about a few basics that takes 5 minutes in the morning. I would never in 100 years show up to my office without at least powder to even out my skin and a coat of mascara. My mom was a school teacher in the 70s and 80s and she always wore blush and lipstick.

    • This probably varies a lot by region.

    • I’m pretty sure women have been wearing make-up basically forever. Women in ancient Rome wore make up. I don’t think anyone considers it to be a requirement, it’s a choice. If you choose to wear it, you can apply it to look natural or to look more made-up, depending on your personal taste. Of course beauty magazines will discuss make-up, they’re beauty magazines.

      • +1. Make-up was heavily stigmatized in England when it was associated with actresses (who were considered loose women). Probably Victorian/Edwardian eras? And theater makeup is done a LOT differently from what you would wear in normal life, so the concern stemmed from the obviousness of the makeup. Because even the high-born women were using rouge and whatnot to continue trying to look young. You just had to do it so you didn’t seem obvious.

        But that’s a really limited sample size.

    • Marshmallow :

      I’m sitting at my desk right now with nothing on my face but SPF (which IS a requirement! always!). I usually wear makeup but just don’t feel like it sometimes and that’s okay.

      One grandma always wears makeup and is perfectly coiffed. The other tends to throw on mascara and not much else. Mom always wears makeup. I think women have been trying to make ourselves look beautiful and/or professional for hundreds or thousands of years– the form just differs. Lisa Eldridge’s book is really interesting on the history and anthropology of makeup. If you’re interested in kind of an academic sense, I highly recommend it. Fascinating, and great photography.

    • Mom, grandma & sisters all wore/wear make up. I generally don’t, and when I do, I want the end result to be a slightly more attractive “natural” look, not made up.

    • I don’t wear makeup. My mother doesn’t either. Makeup is absolutely not a requirement. I know a lot of women complain about “needing” it more than others – I am not crazily traditionally attractive (like I think I’m hot, but I’m sure a makeup artist would find plenty to “improve” upon) and its not about that at all. I just don’t think I owe it to anyone to make my face look a certain way. People get used to your face looking however it looks every day. If you don’t wear makeup every day for a few weeks, people will get used to it, the “you look so tired” comments will stop. I’m acne prone and have a pretty strict face care routine, but it only takes me about 3 minute in the morning and the same at night. That’s it. Makeup is not a requirement! Women don’t owe it to anyone to be pretty! Our presence in the world is not justified by our attractiveness. I realize in theory that for some women makeup is a fun hobby, or a choice, but the vast majority of the time I hear other women talking about it as a burden/obligation and that makes me sad. You are probably so much more beautiful than you realize without your makeup, and even if you aren’t, even if you are straight up ugly, you are still worthy and important and loved. End of rant.

    • I wear CC cream pretty much every day when I leave the house because I have acne. That’s about it. I do love makeup and can do a deadly smoky eye, but its too much work for a daily basis. If I have a date, yes. Event, yes. Daily to work, nope!

      My mom (born mid-50s) wears no makeup. I had to fight her to wear mascara and foundation for my wedding.

    • I don’t think it is a requirement. I think it is a personal choice.

    • lawsuited :

      Makeup is not a requirement for women. I wear makeup every day I work, but my mother and sister never do and I often don’t wear makeup if I’m not working. I think there is still stigma associated with garish makeup unless you’re a Youtuber or a Kardashian, and a preference for natural-looking makeup.

    • My mom didn’t wear makeup. I wear “fun” makeup for fun things, dates, girls nights, and in the morning I wear a tinted moisturizer with SPF and sometimes some neutral eyeshadow. I tell my daughter that I wear makeup “because I like to” because I don’t want her to get the message that it’s a requirement.

    • I wear full coverage power daily, plus mascara. That’s for working from home but running around town with kids etc.

      When I go j to the office and/or have to show my face on webcame when working from home, I add a light lipstick/gloss, and a neutral eye shadow.

      I have very splotchy uneven skin and pale eye lashes. I look so much more awake with just that 1-2 minutes worth of makeup. It is for me, not for others!

      I do not look that much better with a full out face. Too much work (to put on and take off). I do keep my eyebrows groomed.

  17. Professional Headband Look? :

    Anyone know of a way to make thick headbands look professional? I have a condition that has sadly caused me to lose hair at my temples and I’d love to cover that, but headbands just look so cute and casual. Any ideas? TIA!

    • This is meant with kindness and empathy, but headbands are not generally worn by adult women in the present style climate. Ask your stylist for advice at your next hair appointment?

    • BeenThatGuy :

      There are some really cute clip-in style bangs that might cover the area you are self conscious about.

  18. Is there an app or webs*te that will let you upload a floorplan and play around with arranging furniture? Thanks.

  19. Zika Question... :

    Is the Bahamas safe if you’re concerned about Zika? It’s not a concern for me, so I haven’t really been following new about it closely, but my sister just got an opportunity to vacation there and we’ve found conflicting information about the threat level.

    • There is local transmission of Zika in the Bahamas. If she’s TTC or pregnant, her doctor would probably advise her not to go.

    • 18 weeks pregnant here–and assuming, based on your question that you sister is pregnant or planning to get pregnant. The information seems to be conflicting all over – my OB admitted when he “strongly advised” against a work trip to West Palm Beach that most practitioners are making recommendations based on incomplete information, especially this time of year when the outbreaks aren’t as prevalent.

      He pointed me to the ACOG practice advisory on Zika (easy to find via google) — it contains recommendations on travel restrictions by country and is, according to my doctor, the most up to date information and what most practitioners rely on.

    • My best friend is getting married in the Bahamas and I can’t go because we’re TTC. No, it is not safe for your sister unless she wants to wait 8 months (assuming her male partner is traveling with her– they keep Zika in their system longer than women do) to resume TTC.

      • It’s 6 months for men, and if her partner is not traveling with her, she only has to wait 8 weeks upon returning to begin TTC. And those are very conservative estimates of how long to wait. The CDC arrived at them by tripling the longest known transmission times, which means that a man is probably safe after ~2 months and a woman after 3 weeks.

  20. Paging KT- you still around? Haven’t seen you for awhile. Hope you’re ok.

  21. My hair is…super boring. It’s straight, about an inch past my ears, and I wear it plain with a skinny headband (I’m growing out my bangs) every. single. day. Is that just how things work at this length, or does anyone have suggestions for how to style it in a more interesting way? I’ve thought about cutting my bangs again, but I’m worried that I’d have to keep flipping sideways bangs sideways again, and that straight bangs with a bob would look like one of those Japanese dolls (or worse, like that white-actress-playing-an-Asian-character haircut—I’m part Asian but look more white so that possibility is really stressing me). Any advice?

    • Start by not wearing a headband and styling or clipping your bangs to the side.

    • What about changing up your part? Ditch the headband and play around with a side part. That might allow you to sweep your bangs off to one side like a side bang while growing them out.

      • pugsnbourbon :

        +1. I grew out my bangs (as a teen) by switching to a side part. Now my hair is a pixie and still parted on the side.

    • I’m like you in that I frequently get bored with my hair (cut bangs, grow out bangs, rinse, repeat) but I never look at anyone who wears their hair the same way every day and think “boring.” I just see a person with nice hair, or with a nice cut that works for them.

  22. What do you think is the most versatile, timeless wallet color? I’m replacing my ancient wallet and am hoping to get something that will last a long time.

    • Literally whatever you want. The color of your wallet only matters to you.

    • Seriously? :

      Most timeless wallet color is for sure neon green.

      • Edna Mazur :

        Neon green is actually a great color for a wallet. I had a neon green one for ages and I could always find it in my bag, even in the dark.

        It got kind of dingy and torn so now it’s my kiddos play wallet. If my credit cards wouldn’t have kept falling out, I’d probably steal it back, love that wallet.

      • Agreed. Plus, much easier to find in the depths of your purse.

      • I would love a neon green wallet.

        More serious answer: black.

      • Not far off – but I have a turquoise one I love

    • I have a burgundy/oxblood one from Everlane that I really love.

    • I have a mustard yellow wallet that I love because it is a classy color but also is easy to find in a bag.

    • Burberry’s classic plaid

    • I personally would go with a color that can be easily spotted against your purse lining, like fuchsia.

      The timeless colors for wallets are the same as the timeless colors for shoes.

    • I’ve owned the below linked Hobo wallet for 5-10 year range in the deep red color. I love it to pieces and the leather has aged well.


    • I bought a bright royal blue wallet a few years back, and get comments on it regularly. I think you find a color you love, and buy something of quality in that color.

      • Gretchen Rubin did a podcast on finding your “signature color,” meaning a color that makes you happy when you see it. She suggested getting a wallet in this color since it’s an accessory you see every day but it doesn’t make a strong fashion statement. Mine is red!

    • I’m currently carrying a metallic patent leather wallet and it’s my favorite so far. Very easy to spot in my black tote and cute enough to carry on its own. I have a large zip around style large enough to carry my iPhone if I need to.

    • Manderley :

      I have a pewter one that’s understated and shows up nicely in my black bag.

  23. Interesting thread around getting laid off and how Law firms will bend over backwards to accomodate you. Is there a big stigma around getting laid off? I know in my field (ibanking) this happens fairly frequently and usually bankers and staff can move on without too much fuss.

    do lawyers have a hard time finding other positions ?

    • It’s a chicken – egg situation. Because law firms often let lawyers go gently, there is stigma around getting fired or let go abruptly. Basically, Jane Doe must be pretty awful if they didn’t give her an ease out opportunity. If it was more common like in ibanking then there would probably not be a stigma.

    • anon associate :

      Yes. The situations described upthread are typical of biglaw layoffs. You get a long runway, so to speak, provided there isn’t a serious performance issue or some reason they need you out of there immediately. Conventional thought is that its very hard to find a legal job if you’re unemployed. There is a stigma –probably in part because everyone knows big firms do soft firing.

      I also think it’s done this way because everyone knows that most associates won’t make partner and will wind up leaving these firms. When associates have otherwise done good work and made lots of money for the firm, tossing them out on the streets does nothing helpful for anyone- the firm immediately loses the ability to get that associate’s work done, client service is disrupted, and the associate is rightly full of rage and the firm’s reputation will suffer and harm its ability to attract talent. For the majority of associates, biglaw firms are thought of as stepping stones to something else and everyone recognizes this at the outset. By providing a soft landing, the firm can preserve the relationship with the associate, which can lead to business referrals, etc., and ideally, install that associate in an industry position (potentially even in house at a client) which will increase likelihood of future work for that firm.

      TL; DR: Conventional wisdom is that if the firm can’t make you partner, then it should/will help you find your next opportunity as consideration for your investing your associate years there.

    • I think it’s because the law firm doesn’t want to burn bridges. For all they know you may land a job in-house at a company that can give them firm business. It’s in the firm’s best interest to keep you happy.

    • Yes – huge stigma in law to getting laid off; nothing like finance/ibanking where I feel like everyone has been laid off at least once and eventually lands. In law it can totally derail your career (ask me how I know . . .).

      And while I realize firms are “gentle” to keep us happy — give me a break. If I ever land in house, not one dime of business is ever going back to them bc at the end of the day, I don’t care how nice they were — they got rid of me — why on earth would I reward that with money?

      • Really? If I got laid off due to lack of hours, and the firm was super nice about it and made sure I landed well, I would repay that.

        • When a talented associate doesn’t have enough hours, it’s usually the firm’s fault, not hers. I don’t see why you would want to repay someone for scr*wing you and your career over. Just because they didn’t treat you in the worst possible way doesn’t mean they treated you well.

          • This. It was their fault they weren’t bringing in the business – not yours – assuming you weren’t a senior assoc who was expected to generate. I guess for some firms you could consider repaying if they really helped you land — my firm said the right words, but never helped anyone – at least not in litigation. While they said they’d help, if you wanted to go to a certain co. and knew they had contacts there and asked a partner that you had slogged for 3000 hrs/yr if they could involve themselves — most often they would hem and haw and not do it (as we saw for MANY senior associates – all with great reviews etc.). Reality is their contacts weren’t that strong and they didn’t want to “ask a favor” for an associate when they may need a “favor” later – like work thrown at them by their contact. So then they’d give lame responses like — well why don’t you apply online and if you can get to the 2nd/3rd round, THEN I’ll call the contact and put in a word. Um — if an online app gets me to round 3, I won’t need your help then. Basically they provided no help and then when people landed on their own at top Ibanks, THEN they were SUPER interested in taking you out to lunch, celebrating etc. No thanks. Not rewarding that behavior.

  24. Is this normal? :

    Help! Looking for reality-check. BF gave an character reference for a friend today, who is applying in a security-related govt job. The recruiter now also wants to talk to me, even though BF made it clear that the job applicant for me is more of a good aquaintance.
    In principle, I’m happy to confirm that the applicant is a non-crazy, hardworking employee, but to ask the reference for another reference strikes me as super-odd. Has this happended to anyone before?

    • Is this a recruiter or a background check?

      • Is this normal? :

        oops, this is a background check, not a recruiter.

        • Not anon above but I’d say it’s common. BF probably mentioned you in passing in a story or if the background checker asked if any other friends knew the person.

          • +1 this is extremely common. they’re required to go out and find people that the applicant didn’t list on the form.

        • Then it’s totally normal. If you don’t mind doing it you just answer their questions honestly and it’s pretty quick.

    • In our experience (frequently asked to be references for clearances), this is normal. The applicant gives the names of those he/she knows will say good things. The investigator wants to go deeper than that, so they ask the references for names, and then they ask THOSE references for names. At least for Secret and Top Secret clearances, this is totally normal.

    • Is this normal? :

      thanks everyone for the gut check. All our friends are getting into real jobs for the first time, so I’ve never had anything to do with this. But the trusty hive has good advice, as always!

    • That happens in all background checks. Like 100% of them. They don’t just limit it to the people the applicant lists; they look for people the applicant did NOT list to see if anyone has something bad to say.

      • Anonymous :

        Yeah, and they go around and harass your neighbors and old teachers and other people you don’t really know. Pretty sure my neighbors think I’m in the mob.

  25. Anyone live in Lexington, Kentucky? What food delivery services do you use? I’d like to deliver some cookies or treats to someone there today (last minute, of course!) and am struggling to find something. Found Insomnia Cookies, which is exactly what I’m looking for, but this person is just outside of their delivery range. Anyone have any suggestions?! Thanks!!

    • I’d call local bakeries and see if they’d be willing to deliver for you. I did that once for a friend’s birthday, they don’t normally deliver but agreed to for a fee, and it worked out great.

    • I would use Task Rabbit and see if you can’t get someone to pick up the cookies and deliver them for you.

    • givemyregards :

      Don’t live there currently, but am from Lexington and it’s not really a delivery-heavy city. Particularly if your friend lives outside of downtown. I’d look up bakeries closest to where they live and second Pesh – see if they’ll deliver for a fee. Or call Insomnia and ask them if they’ll delivery outside of their delivery zone for an added fee – I’ve had companies be amenable to this, particularly if it’s right outside their delivery area.

  26. Working from Home :

    So I just got a new job where I’ll be working from home. Any suggestions from the Hive on transitioning to working from home – suggestions on setting up my home office (like things I might not obviously think to get) or suggestions on how to remain social/showered/groomed despite having the option to work in sweatpants?

    • I transitioned from full-time in-office to full-time working from home last year (same job, geographic relocation to a city where we didn’t have an office).

      I have a dedicated office that is ONLY my office. I have a desk, my laptop, an external monitor, printer/scanner/copy machine. Paper shredder. A landline phone that allows me to turn off the ringer (so during the hours where I wouldn’t physically have been in my office, I shut off the ringer).

      I work out in the mornings so I shower and dress in real clothes every day. Mostly black denim or jeans with seasonally-appropriate toppers (shirt/sweater/blazer/etc), occasionally I’ll bust out a wool pencil skirt (esp if I know I’ll be outside for a while later in the day, I seem to stay warmer that way). I don’t work in my pjs or lounge-y clothes.

      So far, it is amazing. I get a ton done, and I still feel fully plugged-in to my office. I think it helped that I was there for many years before making this transition, though.

    • If you can find coworking spaces or groups in your city, it might be extremely beneficial to your sanity to commit to working there once or twice a week!

    • numbersmouse :

      Have a schedule! Seriously, establish a daily schedule and include things like “breakfast” and “shower + get dressed”. I also find it beneficial to schedule one important piece of work (10 minutes of writing) BEFORE those essential things, so I feel like I get a headstart before my work day “officially” begins.

    • I don’t work from home, but I’ve heard that having a completely dedicated space including a land line is key.

    • Lazy lawyer :

      I have worked from home for about three years, and I agree a dedicated office space that you can leave at the end of the day is key, as is good infrastructure (quality printer/scanner, landline, monitor) and a routine. I only differ from the advice above in that I do not get dressed in “real” clothes — this is contrary to all advice I’ve read, but I find my productivity is not affected, at all, by wearing leggings (hence, my handle, which refers to how I dress :-)

  27. Favorite Slow-cooker recipes? :

    Needing some inspiration and want to do more planning ahead with meals this year.

    • Cooking Light Thai-Style Pork Stew: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/thai-style-pork-stew

      Cooking Light All-American Chili: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/all-american-chili

      For the chili, I brown the meat and veggies (onions, pepper, garlic and jalapeno) and then put those and all the other ingredients, plus frozen corn in the slow cooker for 6 to 8 hours on low. I just made it on New Years Day.

    • http://damndelicious.net/2015/02/21/slow-cooker-korean-beef/ served with rice and steamed broccoli. Not the most amazing or authentic ever, but pretty solid for a weeknight and you can get away with cheap cuts of beef. Also can use frozen chunks of beef directly into the crockpot if you’re going to leave it on low for ~10 hours or so.

    • I love this one and have made it for family gatherings, where it has been well received. The pepper amount is off, though; I would use 1/2 tsp. I also use fresh onion and garlic, not dried, and usually add a pound or so of sliced baby carrots, which look pretty and add nutrients. Note that you will need real pearl barley, not the quick-cook kind you generally see at supermarkets.

      This recipe makes a ton and it can cook for an entire, long workday. (I hate crockpot recipes that say to cook for 4 or 6 hours.)


  28. Does anyone have computer glasses? My DH just ordered a pair, and I am wondering whether I could get away with wearing them at my desk at work. I’m an associate in biglaw. He ordered his from Gunnar and they have frames that look like normal glasses, so the main issue is the yellow tint on the lenses.

    • I have some that I wear at my desk only. I’m not sure if your question is whether you can get some, or whether you can just wear his. For me, my eye doctor “designed” them (his wording), so I think that there was more to them than just the yellow tint, but maybe not. I’m severely nearsighted and wear contacts as well. I do find them really helpful when I’m staring at the computer for long periods of time (and always kicking myself for forgetting to bring them home if I’m working from home), but can’t stand them otherwise – if someone comes into my office, they go up on top of my head immediately just so that I can turn and talk to them. I’m not sure why, the yellow tint just makes the real world look too weird for some reason.

    • I wear +1.00 glasses when working at the computer to decrease eye strain on the recommendation of an eye doc.

  29. Suggestions for food items to give as a thank you instead of/in addition to a plate of cookies (because so many people complain about the fat and calories given as gifts)? Spears of fruit?

    • Pears, fancy jam, fancy honey, fancy olive oil, fancy balsamic vinegar, nuts, granola.

      • AttiredAttorney :

        X2 to olive oil and balsamic! Even the most health conscious person will enjoy those.

        Are there any local fruits or food products? Like Texas pecans, California wine, Washington apples, or Georgia peaches that you could buy a gift box of from the grower to give?

        Please no more jam. I have gotten so many jars of “local” or homemade jam that I have no clue what to do with. I don’t buy bread for home, so these jars languish on my shelf. The commercially produced ones are about to get donated to a food bank, but they won’t take the homemade ones.

        Keep in mind it might not be a fat/calories thing, but more of a carbs/sugar thing as to why people are refusing the cookies. I would rather get nice cheese over cookies.

        • Anonymous :

          some jams/jellies pair nicely with cheese, but agreed, it’s difficult to use up all the jars my aunties give me. First world problems!

        • Anonymous :

          posted too quickly. Wanted to add, our local homeless shelter gladly takes the homemade ones.

  30. Suggest a DC area recruiter? :

    Hi! Does anyone have tips or suggestions for finding an executive recruiter (in the DC area) that fits me? I’m not a lawyer, just a regular business exec with a good resume looking to move up. I stayed at each of my previous jobs for 5-7 years before moving on, so every time I re-enter job search mode, I feel disconnected. Right now, I’m getting some “just email me your resume” responses, which I’m reluctant to do because I’m looking for a fairly senior role and I’m worried that sharing my resume with a recruiter that I’ve never met would lock me out of working with other recruiters right away. Shouldn’t I get to be a little picky bout who represents me? Maybe I’m looking at this wrong. Any advice or first hand experiences would be helpful, too. Thank you so much!

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