Suit of the Week: Mugler

For busy working women, the suit is often the easiest outfit to throw on in the morning. In general, this feature is not about interview suits for women, which should be as classic and basic as you get — instead, this feature is about the slightly different suit that is fashionable, yet professional.

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: flares are definitely coming back. We’re still in that silly/trendy/FASHUN phase right now, unfortunately (this blue flared pantsuit looks like something an extra would wear in a 70s movie!), because I think flared pantsuits can, in theory, be a great look. Note that flares should be hemmed so about an inch of your heel sticks out (I’d call these too long), and that it’s especially difficult to mix a voluminous top with a voluminous bottom, so think streamlined. The black suit pictured here is from Mugler — the jacket is $1585 and the pants are $995. There’s an awesome dress (not pictured) that is more on the “dinner” side of desk to dinner, but that’s me.

(Looking for more affordable basic suits in a range of sizes and budgets? Check out our recent roundup of the best women’s suits in 2018.)

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Comments

  1. Anonymous :

    When I am an Evil Queen (2018 Edition), I will wear this.

  2. KonMari Addict :

    I’m really excited for flares to be coming back. My fashion sense solidified in the late 90s-early 2000s, so I’ve missed them!

  3. I do not like the flaired slacks! It reminds me of my 3rd Grade Teacher, Miss Dulkar, who wore bell bottom jeans and flaunted her very svelte figure, b/c she was lookeing to get married and dated Mr. Vinokour (sp?). He clearly was mesmerized by her figure (including her tuchus) b/c I learned she left the district by the time I moved to 6th Grade at middle school, and married Mr. Vinokour. I suppose that is what I could have done while I was still svelte in college, but Dad convinced me to get a profession to support myself. That turned out to be a good idea since the men I might have known enough to get married to were really a bunch of schmoes that probabley would NOT have made enough money to support our family. FOOEY on that! I would have gained weight and not had a profession to fall back on. DOUBEL FOOEY on that!

  4. Baconpancakes :

    Does anyone have an open cardigan they love that is polished enough for a casual-ish Friday, not super thin, but not chunky?

    • Anonymous :

      I love my Lafayette 148 open front sweaters, linen for summer and merino wool for winter (the cashmere is too heavy for my climate). They are $$ but last forever, and prior season pieces can be found at Nordstrom Rack, or similar sites.

  5. My husband just started therapy for what he is now learning is likely work related PTSD – non-military. I don’t know the specifics but I has to do with bad things he’s read and seen on the job. Think social worker, doctor, police officer, fire fighter. Those types of professions.

    From the outside, he seemed himself until the day he told me he needed help. I’m glad he’s getting it. Any tips on how I can support him? I want to balance asking caring questions and giving him his space. I of course can ask what he prefers but I’m not sure he knows yet.

    • Anonymous :

      It’s okay if he doesn’t know yet. Tell him that you understand that he may not know what he needs from you yet. Ask him if he wants you to check in with him and how often, and reinforce that you are a safe space and will listen when/if he is ready to talk about it. What I would need in his situation really isn’t going to help you if it’s not what he needs. Everyone is so different this way.

    • His therapist may also have a pamphlet/website/whatever aimed at family members, which is presumably an endorsement of the quality of that resource and that it aligns with the therapeutic approach they use.

    • Coach Laura :

      A support group for caregivers of PTSD sufferers would probably be useful for you so you can talk about it with people who understand. Many may be for military but firefighters and police officers’ lives aren’t much different from battlefield veterans and I expect that they would be welcoming to you. Other wise a therapist for you would be a good step if you need someone who understands.

    • Anonymous :

      I think following his lead and also looking into resources for family members (NAMI?) are great ideas. You might also consider that sleep, diet, exercise, relaxation, etc. are also related to overall health. Although tackling one thing at a time (the PTSD) makes perfect sense, sometimes a person also needs balance … all of which is a fancy way to say that you could plan some fun date nights, or cook some great meals, or hit the hiking trails as a distraction from the serious work he will probably be doing in therapy. Maybe pick up some of his chores now and then.

    • Anonymous :

      Tell him how proud of him you are. He had great courage to do his job and taking care of himself is ALSO very courageous.

  6. MBA in LA :

    My husband has struggled to find a job after getting laid off. He has an MBA from one of the large schools in LA (several years out), and a background in finance but apparently doesn’t want to do finance anymore. He wants a job where he “grows the business,” although I don’t understand what that means. He tells me that there aren’t many jobs for him in LA. I find this very hard to believe given the size of the city, but he just tells me I am not in the know. Anyone care to enlighten me on why this is or why this isn’t right? If not right, any pointers on what kind of employers he should be looking at?

    • MBA in LA :

      After I wrote this, I realized that some of the comments will be “talk to your husband more.” Yes, I agree. I have struggled to come up with a way to talk to him about this without him getting angry and/or dismissive. Any advice on that also appreciated.

      • Anonymous :

        phrases like “help me understand why…” are helpful if you disagree/think the other side is wrong, but don’t want defensiveness/anger.

    • anon a mouse :

      It’s hard to know if he’s targeting the wrong type of jobs or the wrong types of companies. “Grow the business” might be strategy, might be business development, client acquisition, sales, etc.

      He might benefit from informational interviews and talks with mentors/former professors, or even a career coach, to help him find the right kind of placement for his background.

    • Anonymous :

      This isn’t about the jobs. Tell him you’re not moving, and that he needs to get a job.

    • Your husband either doesn’t know what he wants to do or just doesn’t want to work and is using the excuse of “there are no jobs in LA.” A grown man shouldn’t be this childish about finding work – at the very least he should be hustling to research and narrow down what he wants to do and the businesses he can target.

      Also, if its that he doesn’t know what he wants to do but wants to “grow the business”, he might want to aim for a PE shop, strategy and development team, or broker work. But based on your description, it doesn’t seem like he has the grit to pursue and do well in any of these areas.

      • MBA in LA :

        He has done two of those things in the past (PE and broker work). I kinda don’t get why he doesn’t go back to that – that is the exact point I make and it is shot down. If anything, this makes me realize that I am not suggesting stupid things.

      • You are his meal ticket. Why would he want to work if you will support him? I had this issue with my Alan, who got real lazy once I started earning real money. If this sounds familiar, you have a guy with the Sheketovits syndrome. It is contageous! FOOEY!

    • Anonymous :

      How long has he been looking? What kind of jobs has he looked at? What kind of job did he leave?

      “Growing the business” can mean a lot of things. Sounds like you need a neutral conversation about where his head’s at.

      • MBA in LA :

        He left a corporate finance job (FP&A), and has had a series of corporate finance jobs. He was a management consultant before that, and before that an i-banker.

        I realize my post made me sound like a dunce, but I have some knowledge of the business world – I am a corporate senior counsel at a large law firm. Moving would be difficult because I would have to give up a very good and high paying job that I like, and if we move states, may involve taking another bar exam.

    • Anonymous :

      No substantive insight, but it’s problematic that he can’t explain what he’s looking for to you, especially because it seems like he’s proposing a move.

    • Anonymous :

      IDK but my gut feeling as to “why this is or why this isn’t right” is that your husband is the problem. My husband would explain to me exactly what “growing the business” is as well as what industries/companies/etc he wants to pursue that in … and where they are located. Why doesn’t he explain this to you kindly, in layman’s terms (it involves marketing and product development, or what)? Maybe ask him for a job description/posting that is an example of the work he’d like to do? Maybe ask him to send you articles about companies killing it growing their business, so you can see what kind of initiatives he’d like to lead? I guess he should be looking at employers that are selling financial products because what other area of expertise does he have?

    • I would have him look at marketing/ product management type roles. Another route would be sales. I work in medical device space in marketing and we “grow the business” His finance background would serve him well and the MBA should help too. I am east coast and not sure about companies that are located in LA specifically. The marketing jobs generally require you to be in home office while sales which is always remote.

    • Anonymous :

      If he went to one of the LA schools, the alum networks will be huge in LA.

      He needs to be specific about what he wants to do (or at least narrow it down) and then start to reach out to classmates to network. Even the school career center.

      Here’s the thing. What I just wrote should be 2nd nature to your husband if he went through one of the major programs. The fact that he hasn’t done it means there is something deeper going on.

    • Maybe he means “start up”? He could grow the business of a start up and grow WITH the business of a start up. Either way, you are still not in the wrong place for him to pursue jobs with a start up.

      • +1 to this. I work in LA with start-ups and I would interpret what he’s saying as “I want to join an early stage company and help it grow.” It is not uncommon for people who’ve spent a lot of time at large companies to want to try to their hand at a start-up, where they feel like they will have more influence over how the company evolves. Sometimes this is a good fit and other times they have romanticized what it really is like to work at an early stage company.

        I’ll also defend him a bit by saying that the LA start-up scene is not as robust as it could be given the size of the city. In addition to the obvious (SF) having a way bigger start-up scene, there are plenty of smaller cities (Austin, Seattle, Atlanta, Boston) that have lots more opportunities to join start-ups. BUT that being said… it’s a huge city and companies of all sizes exist here, so he should be able to find a job. My guess would be that he has a romantic notion about getting into the start-up scene in SF or somewhere similar and nothing in LA seems as fun as he’s imagining.

    • My husband went through a career change and throughout the job search process he was extremely defensive and dismissive of my concerns. I later realized this was because his job search wasn’t going that well; he was acting defensive because he felt bad that he still didn’t have a job.

      He eventually found the right next job and our relationship has improved; he’s no longer defensive.

      So, maybe your husband knows exactly what he’s looking for but he isn’t having good luck finding it, feels bad about that, and therefore refuses to talk to you about it like a grownup person.

      To get around it, I’d recommend trying to ask more questions in the spirit of “help me understand” – make sure you’re extremely non-judgemental about it.

      Good luck!

      • unemployment is hard :

        I think this is probably spot-on. When I lost my law firm job I couldn’t handle any one who was not a lawyer trying to give me advice or leads. It made me feel more like a failure, and like those people doubted that I was trying. my thoughts at the time :”If I, a lawyer, am not aware of the lawyer opportunities (that would fit my background and not make me miserable) in my own city, but you, a non lawyer, are, then how dumb am I/how dumb do you think I am?” In hindsight (with a lawyer job that I love and a lawyer friend helped me find) I 100% realize these people all just wanted to help and were being genuine. But, being unemployed while having the weight of a JD/MBA on your shoulders is not a rational time for your brain.

        I obviously don’t know him, but I’m guessing he’s running down his options/possibilities, and his comment about there being nothing in LA are maybe just to try and get you to back-off a bit? If you do have a good lead for him, maybe find a way for someone else to present it to him? When I was looking, my DH was great about butting out and building me up. “you’re an awesome lawyer, it’ll all work out.”

      • I agree. When I was laid off, I was extremely grateful my husband never questioned me and was supportive all day every day. I was also driven in my job search and knew what I wanted, so maybe your husband is different in that regard, but he may be particularly sensitive during this time and doesn’t want you to manage him at all. Just tell him you don’t want to move and the reasons why but that you’ll do whatever you can to support his search and that you believe in him and have seen him succeed before. Maybe even bring up a few times that you’ve been impressed with him in the past. It might help remind you that he’s capable too, which can shift things for both of you a bit. Being unemployed is really a mind trip for people who are used to being in control of their lives.

  7. Anonymous :

    I cry at confrontation. Personal, professional etc. I cry at NOTHING else, but confrontation. How do I stop?? Work is the biggest problem, I can’t being crying every time opposing counsel raises their voice!

    • Anonymous :

      This seems like something wiser people than I will suggest therapy for. If this feels like something with deep emotional roots, I’d suggest that too. But if it’s just an involuntary, not particularly emotional response, I’d tend toward exposure. Watch movies in which people argue. Get your friends and family to stage mock confrontations with you. Practice actual conversations in low stakes environments. It’s hard until it gets easy.

    • Anonymous :

      Maybe try Toastmasters or an acting/improv class? Get used to thinking in the moment and taking some heat / feedback / constructive criticism (without crying).

      I did a lot of plays as a kid in the summer and in school and I think it really helped me roll with it as a lawyer.

    • If you cry at confrontation, is being a trial lawyer really the best career choice? I absolutely can’t stand confrontation (though I don’t cry), so I picked a career and job where there is very very little of it.

  8. I’m tall and hippy (not hippie). I am ALL IN on flares coming back.

  9. Anonymous :

    Hmm…this looks more like a black-tie alternative suit for a woman than something to wear to work

  10. Where should my husband, my dad, and I spend Christmas week this year? Last year we did Maui, this year we’d like to be a little more low key. The ideas put forward so far are Savannah or Montreal… any other ideas? Is Asheville nice for Christmas?

    • Anonymous :

      I highly recommend New Orleans at Christmas!

    • Anonymous :

      Palm Springs is fun for Christmas. Rent a house with a pool or stay at one of the resorts. You could also go up to Yosemite, which is beautiful at Christmas. Stay at the Ahwahnee or rent a cabin and explore the Sierras. If you are skiiers there’s always Tahoe.

      New York City is dreamy at Christmastime.

    • Anonymous :

      Williamsburg VA is darling around Christmas and usually does not get too cold (Montreal). The Biltmore gets decked out at Christmas but IDK re Asheville as a whole. If you are more outdoorsy but spendy, what about The Greenbrier?

    • Asheville is gorgeous for Christmas. Montreal will be really really cold. Savannah is nice too, but my vote would be with Asheville.

    • Anonymous :

      New Mexico? Holiday traditions in the Southwest are charming.

  11. Any favorite non-alcoholic drinks that are more *interesting* than just water/club soda? I love the bitter taste and sippable nature of a gin and tonic or negroni- do you have any favorite simple mocktails? I’m looking for something to sip on at weddings and work receptions, where the bar would likely be a simple one.

    • You could try tonic jazzed up with something…rose’s lime? Or, though this is not completely non-alcoholic (not sure what the reason is behind your mocktails, thus the info), but club with a dash of bitters a fabulous and flavorful. Dash is key to staying as close to mocktail as possible; bitters are alcohol!

    • It’s not 100% non-alcoholic, but I like seltzer with bitters.

    • TorontoNewbie :

      Have you tried Seedlip? It’s a non-alcoholic “spirit” and is very tasty with some tonic.

    • Nerfmobile :

      From simple to complex:

      Ginger ale with a twist of lime
      Cranberry juice and club soda or tonic.
      Sprite + Orange juice + splash of grenadine
      Ginger ale + simple syrup + lemon juice + splash of grenadine
      Lime soda (lime juice + simple syrup + club soda)

  12. Interview help- please! A hiring manager asked me my salary range and I gave him a number based off Glassdoor reports for my area. My midpoint was the average salary listed.

    Since then, I’ve had two friends balk at my range- saying it was extremely low. They work in the area but not the role. I’ve found one article in a national newspaper that supports their opinion.

    Any advice? I’m feeling really crummy now about what was otherwise a successful interview.

    • Ask again tomorrow, but I very regularly interview candidates who say one salary at the beginning of the interview process and another during second round. It’s pretty normal.

  13. Anonymous :

    Has anyone tried Untuckit shirts for women? Any comments on the fit?

  14. Anonymous :

    Palm Springs is fun for Christmas. Rent a house with a pool or stay at one of the resorts. You could also go up to Yosemite, which is beautiful at Christmas. Stay at the Ahwahnee or rent a cabin and explore the Sierras. If you are skiiers there’s always Tahoe.

    New York City is dreamy at Christmastime.

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