Suit of the Week: Akris

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.

This ice gray suit is apparently one of Saks’ top sellers right now. I’ve written before about my love of light gray suits — light gray pants particularly, because they’re more versatile than white pants in the spring and summer. You could even look at this as an alternative to a winter-white suit — I think you’d get a lot more wear out of it because it doesn’t have the stigma associated with white as being fussy and so forth. I like the very sleek, fitted style of the wool jacket, and the cropped portion is intriguing. The pants appear to fit well, and they have a classic straight cut. All in all, it looks like a great suit for work. The jacket (Akris Ice Cropped Wool Jacket) is $3,590, and the pants (Akris Maxine Wool Pants) are $895.

By the way, Saks has a ton of lucky sizes in Akris right now, so search your size — there are some serious markdowns like this dress and this dress.

Here’s a more affordable suiting option from Boss (on sale at Nordstrom) — the pants are sold out, alas, but the sheath dress and jacket are still available (lucky sizes only).



  1. Any foreign policy or national security ladies watching the Tillerson SFRC hearing right now?

    I can’t believe how often he’s saying “I’d need more information about that” rather than taking a position. It just makes me cringe.

    • Anonymous :

      I’m neither of those types of ladies, but yes!

      • Anonymous :


      • My dad say’s Tillersen was the CEO of Exxon, and they do NOT move or make decision’s without having information in hand, Dad say’s. So it may be OK since he has to give up the CEO position to become secretary of state. Dad remembers when he was a younger employee and he was a very good one when Dad was behind the iron curtain.

    • yep.

    • Anonymous :

      Isn’t that what they all do?

      • I guess I’m comparing it to HRC and John Kerry’s confirmation hearings. They knew enough about foreign policy to be able to come up with coherent answers to tough questions on the fly.

        He clearly had a good prep team and absorbs/deploys information well, but I think that there are whole swathes of stuff under State’s purview that he doesn’t know about or doesn’t understand.

  2. Sydney Bristow :

    This suit is gorgeous!

    • Shopaholic :

      +1 I love the cut of the blazer.

    • Anonymous :

      I’ve gotten some Akris in consignment stores and it is fantastic.

      But how is this a best-seller? Where are these unicorn shoppers (professional women who are spendy)? I’d like to be like an anthropoligist and observe/stalk them to see who they are, what there story is, etc.

      It’s good to know that there’s something I can still aspire to in life: Akris shopper who pays retail. :)

      • Sydney Bristow paging Sloan Sabbith :

        I just assume that the average shopper at Saks has far more disposable income than I do!

  3. Frozen Peach :

    This is gorgeous but I would immediately spill something all over it.

  4. The Limited :

    Has anyone else ordered from the Limited and not received any shipment date?

    I placed an order in the Ltd’s online clearance around December 15, and got an order confirmation, but haven’t heard a word since. I knew to expect some delay in shipping, but I’m starting to think I need to reach out to the company.

    • Anonymous :

      Did they charge your card? They’re winding down operations and presumably their online page isn’t accurate up to the minute with what inventor they have left, so if you haven’t received anything and they haven’t charged your card, I’d probably just assume you’re not getting your stuff. But if they already charged your card, then yeah I would reach out to them and ask for a refund of the charge or a ship date.

    • New Tampanian :

      Wait a couple more days and then reach out. They have been terrible with the delays.

    • Limited Returner :

      I had the opposite situation, I submitted a return near the beginning of December, they received it shortly before the holidays, and then it was radio silence for a few weeks without them processing my return or giving my refund. I emailed them through their website’s “contact us” page to see what the status was, and they got back to me and processed my refund within 24 hours. It seems like the squeaky wheel gets the grease with them right now.

    • AnonInfinity :

      I also placed an order on December 15 and just got my shipping confirmation this morning. One of the items I’d ordered was sold out by now (not sure how that happened), but at least the remaining stuff finally shipped.

    • Aunt Jamesina :

      I placed an order on the 22nd and received shipping confirmation today.

    • full of ideas :

      Something similar happened to me. I got an initial FedEx shipment date, then nothing…for two weeks when I paid for 2 day delivery. FedEx did a “trace” and couldn’t find it – they gave me a case ID and told me to tell The Limited. Called The Limited, they said they’d reimburse me. The next day, the package was delivered…three weeks late – weird!

  5. Care Package Suggestions? :

    Suggestions for things to send a friend who is several states away and just had knee surgery? Thanks in advance!

    • Anonymous :

      Grocery or takeout delivery – she won’t be on her feet cooking.

    • that's me! :

      I’ve had two knee surgeries. Does she have family or a good friend local to help with the first couple of days? If so, then anything that could cheer her up. If not, sending something may create more trouble than you wish for her as carrying things and getting around is a lot more difficult.

      I would not send anything terribly heavy or awkward as it is hard to carry things with crutches. If she is able to use one crutch, stick to things that can be carried in one hand. One friend had a pizza delivered. It was so kind and thoughtful and nice to know I had some food without having to worry about how I was going to get it. For the most part, though, people just checked in and didn’t send anything. (So I would not recommend a flower delivery as it would be difficult to carry with one hand.) You could send a small care package with crutch cushions and some gel ice packs and some cookies. Add some nice warm socks to the care package and maybe some ones for around the house that have grippers on the bottom as socks can be dangerous in the home. There is just a lot of laying around. I wouldn’t keep it too much, though. I purposely did not order things online after I had my surgeries because carrying things is just so difficult.

      If you reeeeaaaaaaaally wanted to be kind, you could send her uber credits or something (is that possible?) or a massage or mani/pedi gift certificate for her to use when she is more able. Walking (with and later without crutches) is really physically taxing on the body for a long time after.

      Actually, you could send her a backpack if she is going to work. I have a waterproof one that came with a waterproof little crossbody. It was really helpful to have my phone, wallet, keys in the crossbody in front and not to have to move the crutches to take the backpack off to get my keys out. Waterproof because guess what! You can’t carry an umbrella in weather. I also had a hooded waterproof jacket.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      Netflix/Hulu/HBONow subscription if she doesn’t have any of those things.

      A Texture magazine subscription if she has a tablet that it would work on.

      An Amazon or iTunes gift card so she can buy herself books or movies/shows to keep her entertained.

      Those are my go to gifts for a friend who has had several knee surgeries. They always seem to be greatly appreciated. Also, since she is so far away, maybe set up some Skype dates with her. My friend is always just bored and craves interaction with someone.

    • If the friend is in Chicago and is one of the nicest people you’ve ever met, I think I’m going to go with soup.

    • Another vote for soup :

      Spoonful of Comfort! It’s soup (enough for several people), rolls, and cookies, all delivered in really cute packaging. Since getting one, I’ve sent them to several others.

  6. The stigma of white being fussy as in would get dirty right away? Because I would most definitely not wear this suit for the same reason. It is *gorgeous*. I love it. But I would be able to wear it once because I’m sure I would spill something all over it.

  7. Anonymous :

    I have a lawyer slang question. Is “The Sausage Factory Test” a term you use in law school or after? I have a totally different degree that most of you folks. Yes, we have our own slang and inside joke but The Sausage Factory Test is new to me. I heard it from a lawyer that I work with. I could ask him but I don’t want to appear completely clueless.

    Thanks for your help.

    • Never heard of it, but googling came up with this

    • Anonymous :

      Never heard it in law school or legal practice (in several different regions of the US).

    • Anonymous :

      I’ve heard it in regard to how the sausage is made. You don’t want to go to the sausage factory, or something like that. But not with regard to a test.

    • I’ve heard of the state legislature and Congress being referred to as “the sausage factory,” which comes from a famous quote about how laws are like sausages, you don’t want to know how they are made. But I haven’t heard of the “sausage factory test.”

    • Anonymous :

      Never heard this expression. On a regular basis, I do hear making laws compared to making sausage.

    • anonypotamus :

      Maybe this is revealing about the nature of my industry, but my mind immediately jumped to the term being used to describe how male-dominated an industry or company is…

    • It’s from a nineteenth century Germany politician who said laws are like politics–you wouldn’t want to see how either one is made.

  8. Hanging your sweaters and sweater dresses in your closet, versus putting them on a shelf or in a drawer: yea or nay? They’re always hanging in the store, but I worry about them stretching out if I store them like that long term.

    Also, what’s the best way to store clothes you won’t be wearing for a while? I’m taking out my maternity clothes and packing up all of my regular sized work clothes, which I probably won’t wear for almost a year from now.

    • In-House in Houston :

      I recently saw this and it’s changed my life on hanging sweaters. It’s so simple.

    • I just started hanging mine folded in half through the arm, i’ll include a link below. It keeps them from pulling at the shoulders but also wrinkle-free.

    • In-House in Houston :

      I saw this earlier this fall and it’s changed my life about hanging sweaters on hangers. It so simple!!

    • Anonymous :

      I do not hang knit garments (which includes sweaters).

    • I package up out of season clothes in those big see through sterlite or Rubbermaid tubs, along with a few sachets or cedar blocks, and store them in the attic. My last house did not have a real attic but there was a trap door thingy and I could slide them onto the rafters up there.

      I hang all of my sweaters and knitwear that I wear to work. Its the only way to keep it wrinkle free. I’ve seen the folding over a hanger technique but old house, small closets. I don’t have room for that. And I wouldn’t be able to quickly identify what I’m looking for that way. I have had very occasional problems with shoulder marks in one or two of my cardigans but no noticeable stretching out or other issues. I

  9. Anonymous :

    I am pregnant with my third child and need to tell my big law section head. I also just won a prestigious award. Is it weird to say I have two pieces of good news and then tell him both? I’ve been a little nervous about telling him about my pregnancy, so I’m hoping that somehow this award can make it better.

    • Anonymous :

      I think that sounds like a great approach.

      Double congrats!

    • Mrs. Jones :

      I see nothing wrong with that. Congratulations!

    • Senior Attorney :

      That’s pretty genius. Do it!

      Congratulations times two!

    • Withtatertot :

      In case you’re still reading/haven’t acted yet, I’ll say I did exactly that with one of the partners at my firm (first pregnancy, though) – I brought him a piece of good news about a case, and said I had more good news. I think I gave him a bit of mental whiplash, but he handled it really well. I am 100% in favor of telling people how you want them to react. Good luck and congrats!

  10. Sounds good to me – and congrats on both!!

  11. I need to replace all of my heels with flats. I have a bad knee and have discovered that wearing anything higher than half an inch or so makes it hurt.

    What are your favorite flats? I work in a business formal environment. Bonus points if I could fit a half-sole orthotic.

    • I’m 27, FWIW.

    • Two Cents :

      AGL flats from Nordstrom. Pricey but amazingly comfortable. Try to buy on sale.

    • My favorite flats are (hangs head in shame) the pointy toed flats from Ivanka Trump. I’ve been buying and wearing them for probably 6 years now? Haven’t needed a new pair in over a year, though, and happy that my new work-from-home setup means my existing shoes will last for a really long time…because I don’t think I could bring myself to buy new ones.

      • I have to agree with this, unfortunately.

      • Shenandoah :

        I’m also ashamed to say my Ivanka Trump flats are the best-fitting and longest lasting flats I’ve been able to find that work for me. Second favorite has been a pair of Naturalizers though and you could possibly fit an orthotic?

    • Anonymous :

      Dansko lila. The insole is pretty good, but is also removable for an orthotic.

    • I love Sam Edelman flats. I have a lot of the Felicias, and they used to make ones with a hidden 1/2″ wedge called Noah, but I think they’ve discontinued that style. I also just bought a pair of Tory Burch Minnies and they are soooo comfortable. I’ve been looking desperately for a pair of gold flats to replace my old “neutrals”, and could not find anything anywhere. These were a lot more than I wanted to pay for them, but they are perfect in every way.

    • If you feel the urge to splurge, Chloe. They don’t look the most durable but I’ve done horrible things to mine (e.g., walking in New Orleans) and they are still going strong. Plus, the leather is so soft it doesn’t rub my oh so awkwardly shaped dancers’ feet.

    • Gail the Goldfish :

      Frye Agnes ballet flat (that doesn’t look very ballet-y). I don’t think they make them any more, but they should have something similar.

    • TorontoNewbie :

      +1 to Sam edelman. I bought them a half size too big and I can fit my Superfeet insole in it. Wonderful.

      • TorontoNewbie :

        Although to be fair the insoles will likely chew up the shoe faster than they otherwise would go. But given how much it’s helping my foot issues, I’ll take it!

    • I need to wear more flats, but I find them so frumpy. I lead with that because these shoes may very well be very frumpy, but I can’t really tell. That said, the Corso Como Recitals are reasonable, and comfortable, and as someone with a narrow foot, I tend to think you could slide an orthotic in.

  12. Anon for this :

    I applied for an in-house position and reached out to a former coworker who is now at my potential new employer. I emailed her personal email that I got from her Linked In. She didn’t respond. I now am being selected for an interview. Should I reach out again or just let it go.

    • Anonymous :

      Let it go.

    • In-House in Houston :

      How long has it been since you emailed her? Did it go to her linked-in mailbox or to her personal email account? I would reach out again if it has been a few days. I don’t always check my personal email, especially when I’m super busy. So there’s a good chance that she hasn’t seen your email yet.

      • Anon for this :

        I reached out via her personal gmail middle of Dec. when I applied. Learned of the interview today.

    • Eh I’m kind of ghosting a former colleague who keeps trying to reach out on LinkedIn. We are connected because I actually do know just (I don’t see connection as an endorsement) but it seems what he really wants to do is reconnect and network with me. Which I don’t want to do because I do not have a high opinion of his work and personality. I doubt that’s the case with you but I will just say nothing good will come of pushing it.

    • I think the holidays might mitigate the usual “let it go” advice. Could’ve simply gotten buried.

  13. Anonymous :

    Stupid question, but you can bring your own copy of a book to a book-signing? I want to read the book before the book-signing and won’t be able to get it from the library in time but I do want to get it signed and don’t want to commit a faux pas by bringing a copy I already own to a book signing. If it matters, it’s a university hosting the author/signing, not a bookstore.

    • Anonymous :


    • Yes. Just bring your copy, and not the copies of all your friends. I went to a great talk/signing recently and the person in front of me had 6 different books by the author to sign. It was gauche. But I think the authors generally like knowing that the recipient has read and enjoyed the book already.

  14. Sydney Bristow paging Sloan Sabbith :

    I just saw your post in the morning thread about Stylebook.

    I got the app about 6 months ago and just recently got most of my clothes, shoes, accessories, etc. in there. The first thing I did, which covered a large portion of what I own and wear regularly was to log into all of my shopping accounts and pull up past orders. I could normally screenshot the image and input all the info. If I couldn’t see the image, a Google image search normally found a serviceable picture of the item.

    Once I had all of the online purchases put in, I started making looks. I had a slow time at work and was watching CLE programs online and started making every combination that I could think of. In my case, that mostly meant picking one top and matching it up with every cardigan or jacket that matched and then each of those with my black or gray skirt. That took a long time to get everything in there and if I wore an outfit that wasn’t already a “look” I’d put that one in even though it was out of order. Once I had a ton of looks set up though, it became super helpful for creating different versions of outfits. I now add my outfits for the week into the calendar on Sundays and try to mix up the combos from what I’ve worn in the past couple of weeks.

    I didn’t include accessories in the looks, aside from creating a single look for my engagement/wedding rings, watch, and glasses that I wear every day. Everything else I add to the calendar as individual items since there would be far too many combinations of outfits and accessories to put together.

    I got most of the items that I wear put into the app within the first month or so of having the app. I didn’t get around to making the looks until a couple of months ago, but that was the most helpful thing to have. Over the past 2 weekends I took pictures of the items that I hadn’t found online or worn and taken a picture of in the past 6 months. It was down to just a few clothing items but a ton of accessories. I pulled everything out of drawers in categories, snapped pictures in rapid succession with my phone, and then input them into Stylebook. It was faster to take all the pictures at once and then input them into the app when I had a few minutes or was watching tv or something.

    • Clueless is real life!

    • Sloan Sabbith :

      Thanks, Sydney! I love the idea so much of Stylebook and think it will be really helpful if I utilize it well. Polyvore was my high school time-suck, and this just seems like a grownup Polyvore WITH MY OWN CLOTHES! Maybe I’ll spend MLK Day working on it. Seems like a worthy goal.

      • Sydney Bristow :

        Forgot to mention that if you try to make all the look combos like I did, the “Clone Outfit” button is your friend. Hit that, remove the one item (like a black cardigan) and replace with the next piece that matches (green cardigan). That’s much faster than creating them all from scratch.

  15. D.C. Travel Advice :

    Reposting on this thread – DC travel recommendations needed! Where to eat, what to see, etc.

    • Anonymous :

      What do you like to do and eat? When will you be here?

      • D.C. Travel Advice :

        My friend and I both are foodies and love all cuisine. In terms of what we enjoy, we both are lawyers who enjoy politics. Travel dates are March 3-5.

        • Anonymous :

          DC’s restaurant scene is having a bit of a moment. For restaurants, I’d recommend: Rose’s Luxury (worth the wait!), The Dabney, Rasika, and Le Diplomate. Many others, too, but those are the first to come to mind.

          Lawyers who like politics? You’ll fit in nicely. Call your member of Congress for a Capitol tour, and ask about White House tours too, although you may be late on that one. Supreme Court is fun too. I recommend the Newseum, not as crowded as the Smithsonians but does charge admission.

    • I like the Newseum a lot. The sculpture garden is nice if the weather cooperates (its outside). Call your representative and get a Capitol Tour (explained here: see the Supreme Court?

      For food the two current-ish hot spots are: Haikan and the Bird. Slightly older favorites of mine include Convivial, Le Diplomate, Rose’s Luxury, Izakaya Seki. DC staples include: Rasika, Zaytinya, Central, Blue Duck Tavern (for the fried Chicken). Take a look at the “Eater” guides for lots of information on all types of DC restaurants.

    • Not from DC, but I just visited and had great meals at Tosca and Ambar. Tosca was delicious but not exciting. Ambar is a Serbian restaurant and the food was good and interesting. Also, the staff was really helpful in explaining the menu to our over sized (kind of cranky) group.

    • Anonymous :

      In terms of food, it’s pretty hard to go wrong with any of Jose Andres’ restaurants (my fave is China Chilcano, but Zaytinya and Jaleo are still excellent). I like Teaism for medium-priced lunch, and Cava Grill for cheap lunch and delicious seasonal juices (think Mediterranean food but served in a Chipotle-type assembly line).

      For things to do/see – definitely the Newseum, but be aware that there is an admission fee of about $20 and plan for at least 3-4 hours to see and process everything. The Renwick Gallery (part of the Smithsonian) has some very thoughtful contemporary art pieces on display; the National Gallery of Art just reopened its East Building after renovation, and there’s always the National Museum of American History.

      Depending on time and weather, I would definitely recommend a stroll down M Street in Georgetown, then wander down to the Georgetown Waterfront Park for a view of Rosslyn and the Kennedy Center.

    • Tail Up Goat is excellent. I really like the Library of Congress tour and all the Smithsonian art museums, especially the Renwick and Portrait Gallery.

  16. Help — How do you manage when you aren’t motivated at work? Like really unmotivated? I have no deadlines pending but I do have a bunch a month or two off that are coming. I work in a satellite office and my boss is in the main office, so there is no external motivation and I have no internal motivation. I’ve never experienced this before but all I want to do is plan an upcoming vacation, pick finishes for a kitchen remodel, basically anything other than work! I’m not feeling this way at all outside work so I don’t think I’m depressed (and I’ve been there before so I think I would know.) Any tips?

    • give me your job, and you can do my document review gig instead :)

    • Anonymous :

      When I feel this way it is often because I really don’t HAVE to work, either because I have more time than I actually need and/or I don’t have anyone holding me accountable for intermediate deadlines. Occasionally I get so desperate to create accountability that I will email someone to tell them I’m planning to submit a draft by such-and-such date. Just to make myself do it.

    • Sloan Sabbith :

      Just do something. Commit to working for half an hour on SOMETHING you have to do, and don’t let yourself stop until you’ve done half an hour. Usually once I can get in a groove, I can keep working, it’s just hard to get started.

      I’m 99% sure I am depressed and am about to do this myself, like, as we speak. I just want to….cry and sleep. So, not even productivity. I just want to be alone.

      • Hang in there. Tomorrow should be better.

        Time to see your doctor, yes? I want your New Year to be happier.

    • Thank you for the tips and empathy, ladies!

    • Know yourself. That was always how I worked–saved it all up for the last minute, when superhuman powers appeared in me and I did great things, all just before deadline. It doesn’t work that way for me any more. There were a couple of disappointing performances in the transition, until I learned I had to adapt.

      If you don’t get adrenaline for the sprint to the finish, can you do one project at a time? Doing Step A on projects 1,2&3, then Step B on each, etc might be harder than doing 1- as far as you can go on one before turning to the next, at least if any thinking is involved. Again, you’ve got to know yourself.

      If this is a new problem for you, observe yourself closely so you can figure out strategies for next time.

  17. Friend meetup :

    Would you find it weird if you met up with an old friend and they told you they had been back in your hometown for a couple weeks and didn’t tell you? I have lived in the US for many years and only came back to my country and hometown about three months ago. About a week ago I reached out to some high school friends and will be meeting them for dinner later today. The thing is we share a social media chat group. I am not that close to any of them but we update each other on big life events e.g. births, weddings etc. I am wondering if it would seem strange that I have been back in town for a couple weeks but only just reached out for a meetup. If it comes up should I address this? The truth is when I came back I needed some downtime, it was a break from what had been a very hectic and difficult year and I wanted to prioritize spending some time with my family and siblings. This may seem an unusual question to ask but the culture is slightly different here and people are definitely more social, so saying that you needed some downtime or alone time may come off as anti-social to some people. If this comes up, how should I address it? Advice and suggestions welcome, thank you.

    • Anonymous :

      I wouldn’t at all be offended, but maybe you could tell them that you needed time to unpack, settle down, etc.?

Add a Comment

Thank you for commenting. On the off chance that your comment goes to moderation, note that a moderation message will only appear if you enter an email address. If you have any questions please check out our commenting policy.