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Workwear sales of note for 6.07.23:
- Nordstrom – The Half-Yearly Sale has started! See our thoughts here.
- Ann Taylor – Extra 50% off sale styles
- Banana Republic Factory – Up to 50% off everything + extra 20% off purchase
- Boden – 20% off new styles
- Eloquii – Up to 50% off everything
- Express – Extra 50% off clearance
- H&M – Up to 60% off: 100s of new styles added
- J.Crew – Extra 50% off sale styles
- J.Crew Factory – Up to 60% off everything; extra 60% off clearance
- Loft – 40% off dresses; 30% off full-price styles; extra 40% off sale styles
- Sephora – Up to 50% off select beauty.
- Shopbop – Extra 25% off sale styles
- Sue Sartor – Lots of cute dresses on sale!
- Talbots – Everything is buy 1 get 1 50% off
Other noteworthy sales:
- CB2.com – Up to 40% off; pop-up sale up to 30% off
- Tuft & Needle – Save up to $775 on mattresses (Reader-favorite brand; Kat really likes hers!)
- West Elm – Up to 25% off in-stock furniture; up to 60% off clearance
Some of our latest posts here at Corporette…
And some of our latest threadjacks here at Corporette (reader questions and commentary) — see more here!
- Favorite comfy pants for an overnight plane ride?
- I’ve got a nasty case of tech neck…
- What’s a good place for a relaxing solo escape?
- What’s the best commuter backpack?
- I’m early 40s and worry my career arc is ending…
- I canNOT figure out the proportions in this current season of fashion…
- How is everyone wearing scarves in 2023?
- What shoes are people wearing to work between boot and sandal season?
- What’s a good place for a relaxing solo escape?
- What are some of your go-to outfits that feel current?
- I need more activities that are social, easy to learn and don’t involve extreme running/jumping/etc.
Sorry for the threadjack right off the bat, but I figured it made more sense to post here than in yesterday’s columns.
What are your thoughts on skirt suits versus pant suits? I ask because I live in the South, and have been told that skirt suits are better for interviews, BUT I’m also South Asian, and have been brought up to not show my legs in public. I grew up in the northern Midwest, where I never had a problem–we generally wore pantsuits since it made sense with most of the temperatures year-round. I also have some scarring on my legs that would make me feel rather self-conscious even if I could get over the legs-in-public situation.
Is it going to hurt my chances if I show up in a pantsuit instead? Would you just “suck it up” and wear the skirt? I would appreciate any thoughts!!
The conventional wisdom is skirts over pants. But I don’t think you would miss out on actually getting a job/call back because you wore pants. If you’re not comfortable in skirts, that’s bound to come across & I think feeling good in what you’re wearing can be crucial on an interview.
Just make sure the rest of you is super formal/conservative, and you’ll be fine! Good luck!
I have done a lot of OCIs, and I’ve worn skirts to about half and pants to about half. I don’t think it has made a bit of difference (I’m also in the South). I think that you should wear whatever makes you feel most confident and comfortable. The only place that I always wear a skirt is if I get to accompany an atty to court and I might get to sit at counsel table. Some judges down here still think that skirts are more formal on women.
I had never heard of the skirts-are-more-formal rule when I went through OCI, and I assumed that pants were the most formal/conservative option. I probably wore pants at least 50% of the time, despite interviewing in the brutal Texas heat. I don’t think anyone gave it a second thought. (Or, if they did, it didn’t impact their decisions to give me call-back interviews.)
I think for most firms, pants are absolutely fine. The exception might be the stick in the mud small firms (that we sometimes have people posting about here) which require stockings, or particularly conservative judges.
I wore exclusively pants suits when interviewing in the early 2000s in NYC and Boston, and they were fine. I also got some compliments when I wore a bright colored shirt underneath.
In today’s job market, I only wear skirts. I’m not going to risk missing out on an opportunity over something so trivial, especially when there are so few opportunites for our class. And since you’re already worried about it, you need to wear what will relieve those worries. Confidence is key.
I think your last sentence says it all- confidence is key. If you’re a person who is just not confident wearing a skirt or feels uncomfortable wearing pantyhose in the brutal summer heat, that’s going to show through in the interview. I think in this day and age, it might be wise to wear a skirt for a conservative judge, but otherwise pants might be a better choice if you feel more comfortable/confident in them.
I have worn pants to every single job interview I have ever had. I have found that I am much more confident in interviews when I don’t have to worry about whether I am showing too much skin, or if my skirt is hanging correctly, etc. This is true even though I wear skirts 90% of the time once I have the job. Since you are uncomfortable in skirts, wear the pants. Confidence is key, and nothing is so distracting as someone who is clearly uncomfortable in their “skin” (clothes in this instance). Especially if you are young, that uncomfortableness can translate into it looking like you are playing dress up in big girl clothes. Not a good situation during an interview. Plus, and finally, not showing your legs sounds like it is a religious, or at least a cultural, value for you. Even in this job market, I would encourage you not to compromise sincerely held beliefs. Working in a demanding profession makes such compromises tempting, and you can easily lose yourself. Don’t start out doing so at the interview stage. Good luck on everything!
P.S. I also bristle at being told I shouldn’t wear pants. Maybe it is an overly strong reaction from being brought up in a pseudo-fundamentalist church where I was always being told what women couldn’t do, but it makes my blood boil. And again, I love wearing skirts. Just hate being told that doing so is somehow more “correct” than other, equally appropriate, clothing choices.
I think it really depends where you’re interviewing. If I were interviewing with a very traditional, conservative firm (big or small), I’d probably wear a skirt unless, as in your case, there is an issue of violating a core religious or cultural belief.
Most other firms would probably be okay with a traditional pantsuit.
I am muslim and I don’t wear skirts for both modesty and comfort reasons. I have always worn pants, through my OCI, through 2 BigLaw jobs and now in-house, both for interviews and routinely for work, court, etc., and I have never had anyone criticize or comment on it being unusual. I always felt that looking pulled together, professional and capable was the key, and I don’t mean to be cavalier about unspoken dress codes, but I would not want a job where I was judged so harshly and arbitrarily for something that does not impact my job performance one iota whatsoever. At my BigLaw firm, I never heard anyone comment on whether a interviewee was wearing pants or a skirt. I think you should be comfortable. If you’ve never worn a skirt and you’re fidgeting through you’re interviews, that won’t help at all. That being said, I live in the Northeast and dress codes may be more flexible here due to culture, weather, etc. I don’t really understand the bias towards skirts on this site and whether it reflects reality. Please don’t flame me, I’m reflecting my honest experience!
Thank you all so much for your comments!
You’re right–confidence is what matters, and since I have never worn shorts/skirts, I would end up just fidgeting the entire time. Pants it is–and that way I’ll put my best face forward in the interview.
Great – confidence and comfort are key. Good luck with your interview!
I suspect this is something that either look fabulous on, or horrific… though I just can’t get into wearing brooches — they make me think of my grandmother who always wears (at least) one…and while she is a stunningly stylish woman, she also is about 80 years old…
The dress is lovely on the model. If it didn’t have that empire (or close to empire) waist seam, it would be perfect and I would probably spend money I don’t have on it. Thank goodness for the seam. =)
I had the same thought! Love it, but am far too chesty for the empire waist.
anon - chi
Uh oh. What seam?? I can’t see it at all in the picture, but that may just be my computer monitor. Too late, anyway – I already ordered it. I love the dark purple and the fact that it isn’t sleeveless.
I love this dress, and I think it’s a good price for what it is.
Love the brooch, too — Joan was wearing a black dress with a large gold brooch on Mad Men this Sunday & it looked so fabulous, I had to make a note to self to steal the idea.
Um, yeah. I just bought some vintage brooches on eBay. No, it has nothing to do with Mad Men. Why do you ask? :)
I have this dress, and I LOVE it. I’ve worn it with a narrow patent belt and a chunky pearls and received many compliments on it. I tend toward an apple shape, and think this dress is great for that body type. I did have to have the hem taken up a few inches to get it to knee-length (I’m 5’4″).
This is that Mad Men look supposed to echo 1961 – the sheath and the broach – but modified for today. Not the true sheath of the 60’s, because of the seam under the bustline. Different sleeve, too, and a wider neckline. I like the color – it’s subtle and different. I think the dress is young looking in that it seems like a great look for the younger professional person. This look plays up curves. I need to play my curves down.
Hope no one is getting tired of me posting. I am not working for BB or getting kickbacks in any way, I swear!
BB tailors-I have a few sheath dresses from BB and have always had them tailored to properly fit my bust, waist, and hips. Properly tailored, there is nothing inappropriate or dowdy about a sheath!
EM — if you buy online, can you take it to the store for tailoring? I assume they charge if it’s a sale item, but roughly how much for a dress, do you know?
That I don’t know. I think the alterations partly depend up on how much they have to do to it. I do know, however that if you go to a store and they don’t have your size, or even say, a petite section and you need one, they will order it from another store and hold it for you for your approval, no charge. (It’s a store-to-store transfer.) At least, that is how they have always done it for me, I hope that doesn’t vary by store!
Anon in Mpls
I own this dress and, while it gets high marks for fabric, construction and versatility (can be worn practically year-round other than days like today, when it’s sweltering), I have trouble accessorizing it. On me it’s blahhhhh. I like the narrow belt idea and have worn it with long pearls, but does anyone have an example of a “statement necklace” that works with this dress? I’m never sure what those are in the context of a work wardrobe. A great silk scarf is also a good idea, though those can be aging if not worn carefully.
I think you need something that hangs below, but not too far below, the neckline. Maybe one of the more subtle bib necklaces that are so popular now. But, honestly, my advice is next time you wear the dress, stop by somewhere like Talbots that has lots of different necklaces & play around to see what looks good (they have surprisingly stylish jewelry & much of it goes on big sale on line). You may find the perfect thing or you may just get a better sense of what works/doesn’t.
I like a lot…anyone have any info on the length? it looks long on the model, but thought I’d ask.
As for brooches – I find one looks like Grandma, 2-3 clustered looks a bit funky. Talbot’s often has very funcky brooches. Also, off placement snazzy’s things up, i.e. waistline on a traditional cut sheath etc….
I don’t agree . . . I love the classic look of one. I am also ok with three small brooches clustered. But I find two brooches aesthetically atrocious . . . like when women wear a gold chain and pendant when they are already wearing pearls. It just seems like you couldn’t make up your mind which about which one to wear.
I do love it when women find new ways to wear a brooch, and I agree that they are lovely at the waistline.
diva – It hits maybe a half inch or so above the knee. I am a somewhat long-torso-ed, short-legged 5’9″, and I have it in a size 4. I’ll add that the dress is more figure flattering than it may seem on first glance. Hope this helps!
Thanks. I am a tad taller than you and that is helpful….
I own this dress. Since I’m short I had to get the skirt hemmed but other than that it looks pretty great. The stomach area is not tight and I think it flatters someone with a less than flat stomach. I ordered the same size I order at Banana.
I think this is beautiful. The color is unique. I just could never pull off this neckline. :-(
I also own this dress and love it. I had to have a ton of alterations done to it though. I have broad shoulders, small breasts, a narrow waist, and a large rump, so I had to get the waist and chest area taken in a lot. After the alterations though, I love it. It’s very flattering. Unlike the previous commenter, though, I would say it would not be flattering on someone with a larger stomach. I tend to wear it with a brooch but have worn it with necklaces too.
I hate it when people try to lump all South asian countries together! They are as distinct as you can get! For example Pakistan – its people and culture is very distinct from say culture of India or SriLanka.
It especially is relevant here where your unique culture dictates what you are comfortable wearing. For example someone from India most probably will not have a problem wearing skirts while someone from Pakistan will most probably do.
Sorry about that–just trying not to personalize it too much. Let’s go with “one of the cultures that has problems with exposed legs!”
Anon, that may be your personal preference, but as a South Asian woman myself, it doesn’t bother me at all that they’re all “lumped together”. Also, in my very, very many encounters with “South Asian” women, I find that Indian and Pakistani women are equally likely to wear skirts or not.
Agree. I’m Indian and for the most part, we are culturally very similar to Pakistanis! After all, it’s not so long ago that we were 1 country:)
Sorry, but lots of Indian women, atleast in USA do not have a problem wearing a skirt. Now it would be a different story if she is muslim from India – hence the qualifiers “most” etc.
As a person of Indian origin, I undesrtand that people were similar since pakistan was a part of India. But I have noticed that Pakistanis have steadily moved away from their cultural heritage while embracing a stronger arab leaning muslim identity. IMO, India has grown in one direction and Pakistan in other.
I think one of the points of wearing jewelry is to flatter the face. I am therefore perplexed at the idea of anyone wearing a broach at the waistline – sort of like a belt-buckle? I have never seen this.
I thought it was just to add interest to your outfit or overall look. Think bracelets…
Not centered like a belt buckle – off to the side, but generally the dress has to have structure.
I can’t picture it either. The image that comes to mind is Booth’s “cocky” belt buckle in “Bones.”
I think the points of some jewelry, namely earrings, is to flatter the face, but I don’t think that is the point of a brooch. To me a brooch is pure embellishment, like icing on a cake (or, in this case, on a dress), and has little or nothing to do with flattering one’s face.
I was once in a wedding where the bride pinned a brooch on the waist of her wedding dress, and it was breathtakingly lovely. I think that is why I love the look so much. It takes the right dress to pull it off, but it is soooo pretty when done well.
Place a broach at the waist on the three-quarter line–directly below the point of the breast. I love doing this, as the asymmetry distracts from my short waist.
Sale alert – online sample sale of Elie Tahari today at Haute Look – http://www.hautelook.com/short/do8j … Starts at 11 a.m. EST. Happy Shopping!
SF Bay Associate
I am kind of obsessed with this dark-purple color right now. I just bought a wool shell and a couple of other dark-purple pieces and I am surprised at how versatile the color is. Not a neutral but it seems to go with a lot of what I already have – looks great with gray in particular.
Love purple & gray.
I am having a similar obsession with a certain shade of mustard yellow. Looks amazing with so much – gray, white, red, navy . . .
Me too. I bought a summer dress in dark purple and am looking for purple items to add to my fall wardrobe.
If I can add to your obsession, I just got these shoes in the mail yesterday and a.d.o.r.e. them. http://www.theshoemart.com/cole-haan-womens-air-talia-pump-dark-aubergine-suede/pvc-col-wxsdh-d32775_col_f_air_talia_pump.html
Cole Haan pumps are a mixed bag for me, but these feel great. Suede is not the most practical choice for my rainy region, but I couldn’t resist — anyone have waterproofing tips for suede?
Those are gorgeous!
This was the lowest price I found online, but there are other sizes available on Zappos, Endless, etc. for around $200. I normally wear an 8, but got these in 8 wide just because Cole Haans usually pinch my toes. These are actually more forgiving than my Air Carmas and I probably could have gone with regular width.
That there is a gorgeous shoe! Purple. Want. NEED. Can’t have (if I want to stay married!). LOL.
SO CUTE! I actually got a pair of Air Carma pumps in dark purple patent at a Cole Haan outlet in Nevada and those were what kind of kicked 0ff the obsession – after I wore the shoes four times in two weeks and got compliments on them every time, I started looking around and realizing this dark purple color is showing up a lot of places and it also goes with a lot of what I usually wear. The color doesn’t “pop,” it’s more subtle, which I like. I predict you will wear those purple suede shoes a lot! As for waterproofing – the only thing I’ve ever tried is spray-on Scotchgard, but I’ve never tried it on suede. You can always find a good shoe repair shop and ask them for advice.
So true! Indeed, wearing a dark-purple sweater and a necklace with clusters of purple stones today…
LOVE THEM and ordered them. No tips on waterproofing – you can get the spray they sell for Uggs but if you’re in a downpour, you better cover your feet with plastic bags.
Ordered! Endless.com matches prices so I ordered from there instead. Free overnight shipping + free return shipping. I have never heard of The Shoe Mart before and did some research online. A lot of people say they have awful customer service. Any opinions from people who have bought from them before?
OMG! I saw that aubergine shoe and just had to have it! I just called Endless.com and got a price match on it too!
oh no, all of you are making me anxious that I didn’t just order from endless…if I had, they would be here today :(.
Me too! I get ‘stuck’ on colors and purple seems to be my favorite right now. I feel like I can mix and match it with almost any of the neutral base pieces in my wardrobe. My second favorite is probably charcoal. And I agree with Amy that purple and shades of gray go together beautifullly.
All those fancy words – Liora Piana, Bremberg, etc. Hell, I need an encyclopedia to know how awesome this dress is.
No speak-a-no-En-Glay-sa. :-D
I’ve sworn off online shopping after sending everything I’ve purchased in the past 6 months back :(
But I like this – a lot. Anyone know if it is available in-store?
If you call customer service, they can locate it. Bu sadly, most of the stuff that’s on sale is not available in stores 9 times out of 10. It’s like they don’t want to sully the BB name with the vulgarity of a sale sigh.
Actually, I was in there a few weeks ago and nearly everything in the women’s section was half off. I got some great deals. I did not see this particular dress though.
They do twice yearly storewide sales; they also do random events where, e.g., all leather goods will be 40% off. But they don’t keep most sale merchandise in store, as a general rule. That is, there is usually no sales rack.
Oh, I’ve got the opposite problem. I buy a lot thinking I’m going to send some stuff back, and then end up keeping everything (either because I like it “just enough” to keep it, or I get distracted and miss return deadlines). Sigh. I wish I was sending stuff back.
I have this problem. I started calling customer service and asking for exceptions. It works sometimes (recently with Rue La La).
I like this a lot, but hesitate to buy online. The local BB store is now on my to do list for after work.
If your name indicates your city (Chicago) the Mich. Ave. store does not carry sale items.
Thanks you saved me the trip. I may need to just order online and see how it works.
Me too…. but it says you can return to the store if it doesn’t work…
I love this dress. Dark purple is such a great color — the color of royalty.
Forgive my fashion ignorance, but what is the difference (if any) between a shift and a sheath? I’ve always thought of shifts as mostly shapeless–great for straight body types, essentially a frumpy burlap sack on my hourglass shape–yet this dress appears to have some shape at the waist. “Sheath” is also used in the comments above for this dress, and I’ve seen it thrown around on dresses that were more fitted. Are sheaths and shifts the same? Or does sheath indicate something more fitted?
Shift = pretty much straight up and down (which is why it usually will look good on straight body shapes). Think Jackie O.
Sheath = more fitted and usually better for curvy ladies (can be tight or just skim the body). Think Joan of Mad Men who wears a lot of sheaths.
I love that! I need more brooches so I can rock the Mad Men look.