Coffee Break: Belize Lily Mirror Credit Card Case

Lodis Belize Lily Mirror Credit Card CaseWhile I lurve this credit card case, I must admit that I’d probably use it for business cards rather than credit cards (since I prefer that magnetized cards get their own slots, but maybe that’s just me). Love the large print and the mirror inside. Unfortunately, the blue one pictured is nearly sold out at Amazon(on sale for $20.15), Endless ($27.09) and Zappos ($33.60), but Lodis has lots of similar cases available at Endless and Amazon.


To Belt, or Not to Belt?

Lauren by Ralph Lauren Italian Croco Leather Belt, 1"WiconReader R wonders about belts…

Can you do a post on belts? Specifically belts to be worn through belt loops on pants (not the over the shirt/dress accessory type). I realized this morning that I have not bought a belt in years and I have always been awkward about wearing them. I rarely tuck my shirt into my pants, preferring sweater tops I can wear out, so I don’t usually wear a belt with my pants. Should I? Is there something to my husband’s theory that pants sit better when worn with a belt, even if it’s not seen? Or is that visible “belt bump” under a sweater worn out a no-no? What kind of belt will I get the most mileage out of? Is there an appropriate belt for jeans (for those of us lucky enough to be able to wear jeans to the office occasionally)?

I remember reading years ago that a 1″ belt was an absolute must-have for a well-dressed woman, so I dutifully went out and bought a 1″ belt in what I thought was a decent leather. I found that it primarily sat, unused, because in general I prefer to leave shirts untucked, so the belt just never got added to the outfit when I was getting dressed in the mornings. To me, that’s the dividing line — a belt should be worn if you’re tucking things in; otherwise it’s a matter of preference. (There are caveats here, such as if your pants are too big for you, or the waist of your pants is too big for you — but keep in mind that while a belt will solve some problems (e.g., gaping, pants falling down), that it will create a “bunching” look, and ultimately you either need tailoring or new pants.  (Pictured:  Lauren by Ralph Lauren Italian Croco Leather Belt, 1″Wicon, available at Bloomingdale’s for $48.) [Read more…]

Coffee Break: Spring Garden Pashmina

As we drift into springy and summery weather (finally) we are rediscovering our love of lightweight scarves. For temperatures in the low 70s, the scarf always strikes us as the perfect accessory. Wrap it around your neck (multiple times, if you like) on your way to work, or use it as a stole if you’re sitting outside having a drink or grabbing a bite after work. The best part, we think: unlike a jacket, it’s easy to scrunch the scarf up and stick it in your bag if the weather suddenly turns hotter. Today, we’re liking this Spring Garden scarf from Affordable Scarves — at $11.26, it’s definitely affordable.  Spring Garden Pashmina

Reader Mail: How to wear brooches?

how to wear brooches2018 Update: We still stand by this advice on how to wear brooches (and links have been updated below) — but you may also want to check out our more recent roundup of how to wear a brooch.

Reader L writes to us, wondering:

Can you do an article about how to wear brooches / pins? They always look so nice on Michelle Obama. I bought two of them and have no idea if they are work-appropriate or what to do with them…

Personally, I love brooches.  (Pictured above:  Nonogram Pin, sadly no longer available at Brooks Brothers.) Back around 2003 it was all the rage to wear 2-4 of them (at least, it always seemed like that’s what Stacey and Clinton were advising folks to do); now, thanks to Michelle Obama, they’ve regained popularity. I’m not sure they ever went “out of style” completely, though—in other words, if you like the way they look and Michelle Obama stops wearing them for some reason, you can still wear them.

There are lots of ways to wear brooches, obviously.  On the lapel of your jacket or blazer is the most obvious place — this works best with more delicate-looking brooches, but can be done with larger brooches as well. We’ve seen Michelle wear them as ways to keep a cardigan closed; we’d advise going with a fairly muted, large brooch (the one above is a bit fancy, but would work well for this purpose) and positioning it in the middle of your abdomen — well below your breasts.   We’re a big fan of wearing a large, colorful brooch with a solid-colored turtleneck or scoopneck; wear the brooch not on your chest but in the region between your clavicle and shoulder.  Finally, for work, we’d also include the brooch-as-hair accessory — if you’re doing a low ponytail or a half-up do: try pinning the brooch in your hair so it anchors to the elastic — it’ll just look like a really lovely barrette.

The more shiny/sparkly a brooch is, the less appropriate it is to work (at least, for our $.02).  We’d wear these kinds of brooches to dinner parties and black-tie dinners, though; pinned to the dress at the waist (either centered or at the side), or pinned to the shoulder/clavicle region.  If you have two matching brooches you like, you can try to pin them to your dress at the shoulder–we’re thinking of some old scene in a Claudette Colbert or perhaps Katharine Hepburn movie where the heroine wears a sleeveless, Grecian-type drapey dress and does this.

In general, keep in mind that the brooch — worn for work — should bring attention to your face; not your chest or your outfit.

Readers, any opinions on how to wear brooches? Shop more brooches, below…

Flip-Flops: Not the Best Office Accessory (Poll Results)

Sigerson Morrison - 7948 (Green Patent) - Footwear

So about a week and a half ago we ran a poll about flip-flops — specifically, whether they were ever acceptable to wear to the office. Poll is ongoing, but thus far, these are the answers…

Are flip-flops acceptable to wear IN the office? According to 68% of you, NO.

Are flip-flops acceptable to wear to office-sponsored social gatherings? According to 70% of you, only if it’s a BBQ or outdoor event.

Are flip-flops acceptable to wear TO the office? 51% said sure, as long as you change into regular shoes when you get to the office. (A surprising 20% of you said No! Never.)

The picture above may not (according to most of you guys) be appropriate for the office, but damn they’re cute. Sigerson Morrison – 7948 (Green Patent) – Footwear, available at Zappos for $299.

Weekly Round-Up: If you wear it to play, don’t wear it to work

pink polish for work– The Girls in the Beauty Department round up the best pink nail polishes. [Glamour] We totally want the one The Daily Obsession recommended, though (pictured). (Available at Nordstrom.)

– Eeek! How did we miss this? “Clothing” arguments for a new legal dress code. We luuuurve the rule that “if you wear it to play, don’t wear it to work.” [ForbesLife Executive Woman] Oh, and speaking of lady lawyers, the Observer, well, observes that the Litigatrix has eaten Ally McBeal for breakfast. [NY Observer]

– Oooh, ten bags under $1000. [BagSnob]

– On the off chance you’re working in Second Life, Counterfeit Chic has some fashion advice for your avatar. [Counterfeit Chic]

– Long days in front of computers make our necks hurt. But hey — at least we have some government-approved exercises to feel better. [MedicineNet]

– Here’s an interesting site: They focus on Top 15 lists. One we like: Top 15 Podium Tactics From Public Speaking Pros.” [Top 15s]

work fashion blog press mentions