Thursday’s TPS Report: Nicole Miller Matte Jersey Sheath

Our daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices.
Reader A suggests this jersey sheath by Nicole Miller, noting “I adore the turquoise because it makes me feel like I can get away with something bright and trendy, while still remaining classic.” We also like the color (and the sales price!), and think it will look great in some markets, like the South, where a brightly-colored suit is popular.  For a more urban market like New York, we’d mute it with a long boyfriend cardigan in black or gray, belted.  It’s on sale for $74 at Nordstrom’s (was $188).   Nicole Miller Matte Jersey Sheath

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  1. I *love* this color; has anyone seen it in person? It looks like it might be too syntheticy…

  2. Since it’s on sale, it’s only listed as being available in size 4 and 6 so I am out of luck!

    • It’s now showing as available in 4, 10 and 12.

      • it’s now in 4,8,10, and 12 – which, to me, says it’s getting a lot of returns since it’s already on sale and not likely to be getting new stock of this in at this point of the season….

  3. Ditto, the back seam seems a bit too prominent.

    I can’t stand the boyfriend belted cardigan look. I just think it looks weird. Is it going to be around for a while???

  4. I like it too, but I have trouble with this combination of neckline (boat neck means it’s cut away from the neck) and narrow cut at the shoulder (away from the arm). It doesn’t leave much room for a bra strap, much less the “sturdy” ones I require! Also, the narrow shoulder tends to reveal a bit much more of that place between the breast and underarm (gee what to call it?) than I’d like.

    Contest for the day: How to refer to that body part.

  5. I have no idea what you call that area. I think I would go with the vague “chest”?

    I don’t like the implication that the south isn’t urban. There are plenty of big cities in the south, it’s not all farmland plantations. I think it’s just sunnier down there – bright colors seem more natural when it’s warm and sunny. Here in Chicago it’s just so gray most of the time from October through June that any color really stands out (though really we could use a bit of that color).

    Anyway, unlike L, I really like the belted cardigan look, bc I am curvy and it’s more flattering to have a well-defined waist for me. But sometimes I have issues with making it look right, too. Maybe C could do a thread on proper belting? Pictures on normal bodies would be helpful.

    Oh, and I like the sheath. I’d wear it with a cardigan or blazer, though.

    • Agree – I have no idea how to do that whole belted sweater or belted blouse look. I guess in theory it might look nice on me but I’m not sure I’ve ever seen someone who was short and/or curvy try to pull it off so I’d be too uncomfortable to try it. Maybe if I’d seen pictures I’d feel more confident!

    • With a definite waist and a round butt, I hated the belted-anything look until just recently when I discovered that a wide belt that stops at my waist really looks nice–I swiped it from Michelle Obama. She wears her belts high, and generally wider. It defines the waist and lets the skirt float away from the bottom.

      Beware sweaters that cup your butt, though. You want no band at the bottom.

  6. Beautiful. Now this would work with pewter shoes (though not the ones in the prior post) and and a gray cargigan or blazer!

  7. We used to call it the “overboob” area on my team in college, because certain team members could not fit that area into our tiny, tight bathing suits…..

  8. I actually own this dress and adore it! I get compliments every time I wear it. I usually wear it with a white, cropped blazer or a black blazer.

    re Bra Straps… This dress has snaps underneath each should strap, which go around the top of the bra strap – voila! no more straps.

    I love sheath dresses.

  9. Sheaths are the goddess of work wear. I’d have to see this in real life to know what color would work for the covering up part. It’s a bit muted for a black blazer, colorwise, IMO.

  10. Seventh Sister :

    Being from the South (more or less), I think bright colors are just more acceptable/popular there. When I worked in Boston, I remember feeling like a toucan in a very pretty, conservatively cut indigo sheath dress from Ann Taylor. Hopefully times have changed (apparently you can buy beer on Sundays now in the Commonwealth).

  11. I love this and I thank the Comments for good ideas on what to wear with it.

  12. Anne Vohl :

    I think that this is not professional attire, except perhaps on a very hot summer day. Covering it up with a sweater does not solve the problem. The color is not the issue, but the cut is. I am not even sure that a fitted sheath dress looks right in the office at all. This year most fitted sheaths seem to be dark and dressy.

    • If a sheath dress isn’t appropriate for the office, then what is? Little House on the Prairie dresses?

    • Anonymous :

      How is the cut of a sheath dress any different from a pencil skirt with a snug top? Unfortunately I can’t pull off most sheath styles since I’m a long-waisted pear, but for women with the right proportions, it’s a great look! The cut on this dress is modest up top and it’s long enough. Yes, it skims the figure, but women aren’t expected to wear baggy sacks to work anywhere in the US. This is one of my favorite colors too!

      I think I’d wear it with a white blazer/snug cardigan in the summer and transition to brown for fall. I’m in an area where I don’t really think I need to mute it.

    • My go-to style is the fitted sheath dress. I’m genuinely surprised that you would consider them inappropriate at the office.

      I’m also not sure why you say that “most fitted sheaths seem to be dark and dressy.” There have been a multitude of work-appropriate (non-dark and dressy) sheaths featured on this blog in the last couple of months, and I could point you to hundreds more.

      • Some of the anti-sheath comments may be because armpits are not an accessory that screams professional. Not an issue if you wear a cardigan or blazer, but alone a sheath dress is not acceptable in many offices/industries like many law firms, consulting firms, etc. Out of the law firms I worked in, only one woman routinely wore sheath dresses alone.

  13. I love this dress, but wish it came in other colors (although the color is absolutely gorgeous, I think I could get more wear out of a darker color like navy. Boring, I know. This explains why my wardrobe is so blah!). Also, it seems very summery/springy to me. Not sure if it would transition well into the fall season.

    • I think you could transition it really well with a blazer/cardigan/topper of-your-choice and a necklace or scarf that has this turquoise as an accent color with copper, eggplant, etc. to make it more “fall.” Suede (or other richer texture) shoes could make the transition. Change the color palette to pewters, greys, blacks, etc. in winter and it works again!

  14. I totally agree with Anne V. This looks like a bridesmaid dress. Sheath dresses in suiting material (light-weight wool twill, wool boucle, wool flannel, or even cotton dobby) are classy and work-appropriate. I do think bright colors can be very classy and professional, provided they are done in substantial material. Jersey reads “pool party” to me.

    I like jcb’s idea of doing a thread on belts/belting!

  15. Why couldn’t this dress have been designed an inch longer. A dress or pencil skirt is so much more chic when it just skims the knee.

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