Articles on this Page
- 12/25/15--17:43: _Casual Friday: Home...
- 12/28/15--17:33: _2015: A Retrospective
- 12/29/15--10:01: _My Wishlist + End o...
- 01/04/16--01:24: _Belted Cape
- 01/04/16--22:21: _Lace and Pleats
- 01/07/16--08:58: _All Black
- 01/07/16--22:54: _Lately on Instagram...
- 01/11/16--10:26: _Tweed Jacket, Fit a...
- 01/13/16--15:25: _Navy Maxi Coat + Nu...
- 01/14/16--13:04: _My Beauty Routine
- 01/14/16--21:57: _High-Waisted Skinny...
- 01/19/16--01:14: _What to Wear to You...
- 01/20/16--00:59: _TRIPLE THREAT NO. 1...
- 01/20/16--23:49: _Cobalt Coordinates
- 01/22/16--02:27: _What To Wear On You...
- 01/24/16--23:46: _Turtleneck Dress + ...
- 01/27/16--11:08: _Wedding Wednesday #...
- 01/27/16--22:40: _Navy on Navy on Navy
- 01/29/16--11:29: _Silk Shirtdress + C...
- 02/01/16--14:31: _B-Low The Belt
- 12/25/15--17:43: Casual Friday: Home for the Holidays
- 12/28/15--17:33: 2015: A Retrospective
- 12/29/15--10:01: My Wishlist + End of Year Sales
- 01/04/16--01:24: Belted Cape
- 01/04/16--22:21: Lace and Pleats
- 01/07/16--08:58: All Black
- 01/07/16--22:54: Lately on Instagram…
- 01/11/16--10:26: Tweed Jacket, Fit and Flare Dress
- 01/13/16--15:25: Navy Maxi Coat + Nude Accessories
- 01/14/16--13:04: My Beauty Routine
- 01/14/16--21:57: High-Waisted Skinny Jeans
- 01/19/16--01:14: What to Wear to Your Casual Workplace
- 01/20/16--00:59: TRIPLE THREAT NO. 1: The Cropped Turtleneck
- 01/20/16--23:49: Cobalt Coordinates
- 01/22/16--02:27: What To Wear On Your Next Ski Trip
- 01/24/16--23:46: Turtleneck Dress + Fur Vest
- 01/27/16--11:08: Wedding Wednesday #3: Day-After Shoot
- 01/27/16--22:40: Navy on Navy on Navy
- 01/29/16--11:29: Silk Shirtdress + Chunky Knit Sweater
- 02/01/16--14:31: B-Low The Belt
RED COAT: Marc Jacobs (old, but very similar here, here, here & here) | STRIPED TURTLENECK: J. Crew | CAMEL BLAZER: Brooks Brothers | LEATHER LEGGINGS: Blank Denim | OTK BOOTS: Stuart Weitzman | EARRINGS: Ann Taylor | BAG: c/o Reiss | LIP: MAC
I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!!
— click on each individual image to go to the full post and outfit details —
2015 was an unforgettable year; I can’t believe it’s coming to a close this week! Before ringing in the new year, I thought it would be fun to share some of my favorite posts from the past twelve months. My most sincere thanks to each one of you for your loyal readership in 2015. I can’t wait for lots of exciting things to come in 2016! XXOO
With Christmas in the rearview mirror (womp) and a bevy of after-Christmas sales, today I’m taking another look at my Holiday Memo Wishlist and thinking about snatching up some favorites during the amazing sales. Whether Santa didn’t quite get you everything you wanted or you’ve got a few gift cards burning a hole in your pocket, check out the below list of retailers that are having killer sales right now that are not to be missed!
Also, in case you didn’t see my list of favorite holiday home decor shops in this recent decor post, it’s an awesome time to snatch up holiday decor for next year while everything is on clearance! Even though this feels a little weird to me (and almost depressing?!), I was SO THRILLED that I scored a bunch of Christmas decorations this time last year. Per usual, the holidays snuck up on me this season and when November rolled around I was so pumped to have everything already at home just waiting to be put up. Plus, Christmas decor prices are redonk. I’m just not paying $500 for a flipping wooden nutcracker on my mantle, mmk? Happy shopping!
NORDSTROM – Half Yearly Sale! Save up to 50% off!
ANN TAYLOR – up to 70% off all sale styles
J. CREW – take an extra 40% off with code: SHOPNOW
REVOLVE – take an extra 20% off all sale items using code: ENDOFYEAR20
BLOOMINGDALES – save up to 75%
MACY’S – so many great deals
NEIMAN MARCUS – spend $200 save $50, spend $400+ save $100 code: DECSAVE
SAKS – designer sale 60% off
NET-A-PORTER – sale items up to 70% off
KATE SPADE – 25% off all sale items and gift with purchases over $95
AMAZON – special year end deals including 70% off fashion, 50% off toys and electronics, 20% off home
KOHL’S – spend $100 save 20% code: HAPPY2016, spend under $100 save 15% code: NEWYEAR
JONATHAN ADLER – up to 50% off!
I know people worry that capes and ponchos make them look like shapeless blobs, which is why today I’m showcasing one of my favorite tricks to allay said fears of blobdom. I belted the front sections of this new favorite cape which accentuates the waist, and allowed the back to fall without restriction. By belting just the front, there’s a great contrasting silhouette created—further highlighting the waistline—and also minimizing the amount of bulk under the belt which makes the look très confortable. Depending on the thickness of the cape and the overall outfit, I’ve also often belted both the front and back of capes in the past, so just to be clear, I’m an equal-opportunity cape belter.
You may not want to sport the cape all day if you’re headed to the office, so I’m wearing this long button front shirt underneath that looks great belted on its own as well. Since only the front two pieces of the cape are belted, it’s super easy to just slip the pieces right out without adjusting the tightness of the belt.
I’ve become a bit of a hoarder of white shirts, one of my top workwear staples, but I have to say that this Theory number is one of my very best purchases of late. It isn’t billed as a “non-iron” but absolutely is in practice. It recently made it to Wisconsin and back in my suitcase without me having to break out the iron or steamer. Plus, the long length looks great layered under chunky knits, as you can see I recently did here on instagram.
Last but certainly not least, these suede pumps are new favorites as well, and as indicated in the close-up photos above, they have darling bow detailing on the heels. I look forward to showing off this little party in the back with skirts and cropped pants in the near future. I also have to say that these shoes are honestly among the most comfortable I’ve encountered of late—not a smidge of rubbing or stiffness from the get-go. And, at this price point, that’s pretty darn good.
I hope you all had an amazing, restful New Years holiday! Happy 2016!!
This post was produced in collaboration with Sole Society.
Per my instagram and snapchat, I got a lot of use out of this dress over the holidays, and wore it again this past weekend. While it’s a little too short on me for the office (because I’m 5’10”), I think it would work for a lot of you who are a bit more petite. It is one of the lightest, most comfortable dresses I own, and with the perfect mix of lace and pleats, it can easily be worn jumper-style with a white oxford layered underneath or on its own to a cocktail party. Major versatility with this guy.
PANTS: Theory (very similar here) | SWEATER: J. Crew | VEST: Alice + Olivia (similar here) | SHOES: c/o Everlane | BAG: Gigi New York | FUR POM POM KEYCHAIN: c/o BaubleBar (sold out, very similar here) | SUNGLASSES: Ray-Ban | Necklace: Gorjana | WATCH: Daniel Wellington | EARRINGS: Melinda Maria | LIP: Makeup Forever (#28)
Perfect for a gloomy couple days in San Francisco, this all black ensemble is my go-to. It’s also a fantastic workwear option if you’re grabbing drinks or dinner after work since it’s appropriate for the office, but doesn’t scream “I just spent ten hours in front of Microsoft Excel.” I feel like that should be on a t-shirt actually. And I feel like I should be wearing that t-shirt right now.
TGIF! Whew. The first week back to work after the holidays always seems to be the roughest. As someone who’s more than ready to slide back into weekend mode, I thought I’d post some recent off-duty looks shared on instagram (@maryorton). Personally, I plan on exclusively wearing sweatpants for the next 48 hours (as depicted below), but for those of you who plan on putting on real pants at some point this weekend, here’s a little weekend outfit inspo. Happy Friday and have a great weekend!!
SHOES: Kate Spade
SHOES: Kate Spade
DRESS: c/o St. John (similar HERE, HERE and many more favorites below) | JACKET: St. John (old, similar HERE, HERE and many more below) | BELT: c/o St. John (similar here) | SHOES: Saint Laurent (similar HERE) | SUNGLASSES: Miu Miu c/o Ditto | TIGHTS: DKNY | LIP: Makeup Forever (#28)
I was feeling a bit under the weather last week when I sported this outfit, and as always, these classic yet super comfy pieces managed to give me the boost I needed to make it through the work day. The fit-and-flare silhouette is a super flattering shape on anyone, but knit fit-and-flare dresses in particular are such wonderful alternatives to more structured pieces that don’t quite have as much give as you’d like on days when you’re struggle-bussing. So, if you don’t own a dress like this, you should probably get to correcting that via the montage of knit fit-and-flare dresses below. Your future “why am I at my desk and not in my bed” self will thank you. Also, your “I swear that’s not a baby bump, that’s just a double cheeseburger” self will thank you as well, but that’s arguably beside the point. Just kidding. That’s entirely the point. All hail knitwear.
Favorite Fit and Flare Dresses:
Favorite Tweed Jackets (and more):
COAT: Andrew Marc | SHIRT: J. Crew (on sale! also, love this one) | PANTS: Theory (old similar HERE, HERE and HERE) | SKINNY SCARF / CHOKER: vintage (similar HERE & HERE) | SHOES: Kate Spade | BAG: Dolce & Gabbana (also similar nude bags HERE, HERE & HERE) | LIP: Makeup Forever (#28)
But, sometimes I look at the more neutral-heavy sections of my closet and wonder, where’s the oomph? The surprise? The sartorial excitement? Where’s the Lucy to my Ethel? The Joey to my Ross?
Just before I throw my hands up and/or decide to overnight a pair of neon gauchos to my apartment to give myself the much-needed sartorial kick in the pants (pun intended?), I sometimes manage to conjure up an unlikely medley of neutral hues like the ones today that quietly surprise me.
I love the effect that these tensioned-filled pairings create: warm nudes and cool greys, navy blues and jet blacks, ivories and bright whites. These actors that typically win in the “best supporting” category, taking center stage and hitting it out of the park by foiling and amplifying the other.
For me, the result is some sweet fashion feels that are anything but neutral.
P.S. Does anyone say “slacks” anymore? Like, other than my grandmother?
P.P.S. By popular demand, I’m sharing all the details on my beauty routine here tomorrow! See you then!
At the request of many many many of you, today I’m sharing my complete beauty routine! I’ve tried an enormous amount of products over the years, so I’m excited to share with you all of my best beauty finds and the products I truly use every day.
For a little context, I’m not a person who is willing to spend a ton of time on my makeup. Mostly because ten times out of ten, I will decide at 7:00 am that I love my bed more than I love my face. There’s an arguable misalignment of priorities there, but it is what it is. If the whole thing takes more than ten minutes, I’m outta here. For special occasions where I’m really doing the whole shebang (i.e. actually wearing eye shadow, eye liner, and/or lipstick—things that I don’t always wear on a daily basis) I’m willing to spend an extra five to ten minutes. But really, that’s all you got.
Today’s post is focused on my makeup routine and I’m going to do a separate post on my skincare regimen that details all of the more serious moisturizers, serums and magic potions I use, so stay tuned for more details on that. However, there are a few skincare products that are integrated into my makeup routine, so that’s where we’ll start today—with the three underlying, foundational products that really get this pretty party started…
1. Supergoop! City Sunscreen Serum (not pictured)
I literally just ran out of this stuff, so didn’t have it on hand to photograph, but after cleansing my face in the morning (FYI, I’ve been using this First Aid Beauty face cleanser lately and l-o-v-e it), I apply a thin coat of this serum all over my face and neck. It’s anti-aging, super lightweight and has SPF 30 in it to ward off all the bad guys.
I’ve tried a ton of other daily moisturizers and I always come back to this cult favorite. It’s super lightweight, dries really quickly, and really does a great job of keeping my skin hydrated throughout the day.
My skin isn’t particularly sensitive, but I do have a tendency to get preeeeetty damn oily. Because of this, I’ve tried SO many different primers—especially those that purport to help with oil control. Nevertheless, I always come back to this one. It’s just the best of the best and really keeps my foundation in lock step.
My color: Y365 – Desert
Let me try to understate it: this is unequivocally the best ever foundation on the planet ever in history EVER. Given my tendency to oil up after a few hours, many foundations can start to look pretty funky halfway through the day. This foundation is super lightweight, looks truly invisible (yet still hides everything you need it to hide), has the best, most natural finish, and literally doesn’t budge all day. I’ve been using it for about 18 months now and might name my first child after it, the love is that deep.
My color: Light Buff
Waterproof undereye concealer and eye makeup is a top priority for me because I HAVE SO MANY EMOTIONS ALL OF THE TIME. Kidding. I actually just have super light-colored eyes which makes them a bit more sensitive to light, so on a random bright day without sunglasses, odds are my eyes will be watering. It’s awesome. This concealer stays perfect all day, absolutely never creases, and doesn’t move a muscle if your eyes water. Hands down the best concealer out there.
My color: I’m using the black “pro” applicator, but they’re all the same, they just come in different colors.
I give you a full line up of all my favorite makeup brushes below, but I’ve included the BeautyBlender here because I love using this to applying foundation primer, but I also sometimes use it to apply foundation and for general blending needs—foundation, concealer, contouring—you name it. It’s really great for applying foundation products (whether that’s a BB cream, CC cream, tinted moisturizer, foundation, etc.) when you want you just want a thin coat—perhaps for day time when you’re going for a more natural look. My favorite foundation above is super buildable—i.e. it can be layered to reach the desired coverage you’re looking for while still looking really natural, so I apply it with the BeautyBlender instead of my foundation brush below when I want a lighter look. Bottom line: it’s safe to say that the hype is legit on this one. It’s crazy good.
My color: Intense 1
I’ve been hearing a ton of buzz about this contouring duo from industry insiders and beauty-obsessed friends for a while but only recently took the plunge. Holy smokes. This stuff is for real. I’ve only been using it for about three weeks, but I’m already completely sold. It comes in two shades depending on your skin tone, and blends so beautifully and so invisibly. Personally, I’ve had a hard time finding highlighter that isn’t either (1) a weird tan, peach, and/or white shade or (2) too sparkly/shimmery. I don’t want to look like I’m going to a middle school dance, I just want a little extra cheek bone definition, mmk? The picture above may be misleading, but both shades are creams and the light shade is completely translucent with just the perfect shimmer. As for the darker shade, so many similar products look great in photos, but in person look crazy—almost like your face is dirty. This one contours perfectly while staying completely invisible to the naked eye. It’s the actual bomb.
My color: Heather Pop
I’ve been using this blush since high school. I just love it. Some people complain that powder blushes fade quickly—welp, not this stuff. I apply it once in the morning and never touch it again. I also love this line because (in my opinion) it has the best shade selection. For my coloring, a blue-undertoned, almost plum-colored blush works best, and from my experience, those are very tough to find.
My color: Laguna
I’ve also been using this stuff since high school and there’s no question that NARS wins the bronzer game. I use this on my face and even dust some on my chest and shoulders in the summer. It has subtle shimmer, but looks totally natural and never orange which is the danger with most bronzers. Also, their Laguna shade somehow magically works on absolutely every skin tone.
My color: 1.5 Radiant Silk
This magic little pen is not a concealer, yet not a highlighter either. Soooo pointless, right? Wrong. I absolutely love it for brightening up areas that you don’t necessarily need to coat with concealer, but that you don’t want to brush with a true highlighter (like the Tom Ford one above) either. Whether it’s my t-zone, or the corners of my mouth, nose, or eyes, it’s the perfect in-betweener. Honestly, when covering a blemish, I actually use this stuff more than I use my concealer. Just kidding! I totally don’t ever get blemishes!! *flips hair* But for real, it’s super easy to use and covers anything without looking too heavy or shimmery. I actually keep one of these in my purse at all times too because it’s such a great multi-tasker on the go.
11. Makeup Forever Artist Eye Liner – My color: Matte Dark Brown M60
12. Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner – My color: Dark Brown
It’s 2016. I simply should not have to SHARPEN anything ever again. Although I list two products below in the lip category that are a more traditional style pencil that require sharpening, I tolerate them only because the products are so dope they’re worth it and I haven’t found anything better. But to be clear, I’m not happy about it and personally see it as a societal failure. But back to eye stuff… Luckily, my favorite eyeliners do not require annoying sharpening. I have two listed here, because they produce slightly different results, and I use them in different capacities depending on the look I’m going for. The first one, the Makeup Forever Artist Liner, is a more traditional pencil cream liner that’s super long lasting and can draw a clean line or be smudged to perfection. It isn’t billed as waterproof… but it is. It’s also the best in terms of staying power for lining the inner rims of your eye. By contrast, the second eyeliner listed above, the Stila liquid eyeliner pen, doesn’t coat the inner rims well, but is super long lasting, waterproof, and is better for creating a sleek, super precise line (for a cateye look, for example).
My color: Nude
When you’re going for a more natural look and want to brighten up your eyes, just swipe this across the inner rim of your lower lid and I promise you will magically turn into Candice Swanepoel mid Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. This stuff also really stays put, so the eye brightening effects will stay strong all day. I’m obsessed.
My color: Taupe (formerly called “Ash Blonde”)
Disclaimer: My eyebrows are pretty blonde, so I’m not an eyebrow expert because for the most part I leave mine au naturel. I’m convinced that I look like a serial killer when makeup artists give me a dramatic brow. However, I do love this eyebrow pencil because it’s one of the few brands that makes one light enough for those of us who are natural blondes (or dirty ashe blonde in my case) with lighter eyebrows. It’s completely smear-proof and the super fine tip allows you to mimic actual hair when you’re filling in gaps which yields super natural results. Even my darker-haired friends are obsessed with this eyebrow pencil (in a darker color, obviously). I guess there’s a reason it’s got 180,000 “loves” on Sephora. Crazy.
My color: Catwalk Brown
This mascara does it all: it lengthens, curls, thickens, errythang. I’ve used it for over five years and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. Like all of my makeup, from time to time I’ll test out new products to see if I find something I like even more, but in the mascara category, I always come back to this one. I really love the formula, but I think I love it most of all because of the size and shape of the application brush—which is always my complaint with other mascaras. And, per eye-watering tendencies mentioned above, it totally holds its own in the rain.
My color: I have the original “Naked” palette pictured above, but I honestly have used and love all of their palettes.
The Urban Decay Naked palettes are cult classics for a reason. They’re universally flattering, they apply easily, they stay perfect forever and they never crease. I have the original Naked palette pictured above, but I also own several other palettes as well including their Basics palettes which offer matte versions of many of their most popular shadows. Especially for everyday use, I prefer a matte shadow to something with a lot of shimmer.
My color: Light (Translucent)
After applying all of my makeup, I finish it off with this awesome finishing powder. It helps to set the makeup, keep everything in place for the whole day, and also keep that oil situation under control. Works like a charm!
This spray is awesome. It’s packed with electrolytes that help keep skin moisturized throughout the day. Although it has “primer” in the name, you can use it interchangeably as a primer, a finishing spray to set your makeup, or even as a misting spray throughout the day to freshen up your skin. I use it most often as a finishing spray after I’ve brushed the above powder over my face to set my makeup. The powder is necessary because it really helps me control the oil and also just creates a perfect velvet finish, but to make sure I don’t look powdery, I love spritzing this primer water as the finishing touch to make sure everything looks natural.
This is my favorite all-purpose straight-up lip balm which works wonders to revitalize my lips if they’re ever looking a little haggard. I also really love the tinted versions of this stuff (Plum is my favorite color) but the translucent “advanced therapy” version is what I consistently use every night after brushing my teeth. About a year ago, I was telling a makeup artist about that my lips seemed to be perpetually dry, and she said that it was most likely caused by my toothpaste which really wreaks havoc on your lips if you don’t thoroughly rinse your lips and apply a lip balm after brushing your teeth every night. I started rinsing and using this balm religiously that very night and voila! No more dryness. I also keep an extra one in my purse and use it periodically throughout the average day when I’m not wearing any lip color.
My color: 3C Medium Natural Beige
Similar to many of my favorite lip products, I have this guy in several colors, and switch them up depending on what lip color I’m putting over it. This natural hue, however, is definitely the most heavily used of the group because it’s the natural color of my lips and therefore blends under just about every lip color that I wear. This liner is waterproof, long-lasting, non-feathering, and non-fading, and it helps make your lips look fuller while keeping your lipstick locked in place.
My color: San Francisco (how apropros!)
This stuff does it all. It lasts a super long time, defines lips like a liner, colors lips like a creamy lipstick, and is packed with vitamins to moisturize and care for your lips. It also has a slightly tingly, lip-plumping effect, which produces subtle yet noticeable volumizing.
My color: Bansar
You may notice this from maaaaany of my posts lately. I’ve been wearing it like it’s my job. This lip pencil is similar to the drug store favorite below, but comes in richer, more fashion-forward shades and is also longer-lasting.
My color: Soft Raspberry
The Neutrogena MoistureSmooth Color Stick is a favorite drugstore find that does exactly what its name suggests—moisturizes your lips and makes them silky smooth. Above, I actually have the Soft Raspberry shade pictured, but my very favorite shade is called Plum Perfect. I love several of their shades and have amassed a fairly obscene collection of this stuff, but I haven’t found any lip color ANYWHERE that has a more perfect plum pink than their Plum Perfect. I have about 10 sticks of this stuff stashed throughout my house, my purses, and my office and I use them constantly throughout the week.
My color: 28 – Satin Light Rosewood
This is my very favorite lipstick. It isn’t glossy or shiny, but it isn’t totally matte either. It has that perfect, creamy, in-between finish that stays on forever and doesn’t smear or feather. And, with desaturated, nudish-brown lip colors particularly in vogue right now, it just so happens that this lipstick comes in the perfect natural, mauve-brown shade.
Over the years, I’ve tried (almost literally) a million different makeup brushes and always end up feeling disappointed because (1) they’re often not easy to use, (2) they start shedding bristles right away despite fastidious care, and/or (3) they simply don’t apply makeup evenly. Enter the Artis brush set. These crazy looking part toothbrush, part Star Trek brushes caught my eye a couple months ago when I was desperate to end my seemingly-hopeless hunt for better makeup brushes. To be honest, there was major sticker shock for me on this brush set when I first took a look. However, I then started tallying up all of the crappy over-priced makeup brushes I had bought and tried over the past many years and… ouch. After reading all of the crazy good reviews, I took the plunge, and could. not. be. happier. The non-traditional shape and style of these brushes takes a second to get used to, but holy moly, they apply everything from foundation to concealer to eye shadow to blush to lip color like no other brush. And, it makes sense! Why have other makeup brushes not evolved beyond the watercolor paintbrush concept? In addition to a more natural, ergonomic design, each brush contains three to ten times as many fibers as other makeup brushes which results in makeup application that’s super even and product that isn’t absorbed into the brush (so you use less product). The bristles are synthetic and legitimately softer than a kitten, so even the most sensitive skin types will love these babies. I can’t say enough good things.
Also, FYI, in addition to the set, you can also buy the brushes individually if you want to give one or two a try before buying the full group. I also have the Artis brush cleansing foam and brush cleaning pad pictured above which I highly recommend for both brush maintenance and the health of your skin.
OK, that’s a wrap! My complete front-to-back beauty routine and every last makeup product that I swear by. Have I missed anything? Do you have any favorites that I should try?? Please let me know in the comments!
Happy Thursday guys!!
JEANS: Victoria Beckham (also HERE, and super similar style HERE) | T-SHIRT: J. Crew | LEATHER JACKET: old but similar HERE | OTK BOOTS: Stuart Weitzman | NECKLACES: Melinda Maria (also HERE) | LIP: Makeup Forever (#28) | SUNGLASSES: Miu Miu c/o Ditto
In case you missed it, I did a Q&A answering all of your questions about my favorite beauty products from yesterday’s post on snapchat last evening (username: maryorton). Thanks for all of your great questions and feedback on the post! I’m so thrilled to know that you found it helpful and look forward to sharing more posts like it!
I’m off to Breckenridge today for a little ski action, and this look (plus one seriously warm coat) will be on repeat. These high-waisted faded black skinny jeans are easily the best addition to my denim collection of late, and are actually the same style as the blue jeans featured in this post. They both have that awesome ankle zip action that can really mix things up when you’re feeling bored of your skinny jean game. Both of these styles are almost sold out, so I’ve linked to some very similar ankle-zip options below…
I’ve lived and worked in the San Francisco start-up world for a full year now, and am continually amazed at how casual many professional environments are here. While the Zuckerberg hoodie is still nowhere in sight for me, it’s still surprising how many of my business meetings really demand a relaxed denim look over anything remotely business formal. Of course, it always depends on the day and the meeting, but there are many instances where a casual outfit like this one is actually more professionally appropriate due to company cultures here.
So what’s a pant-suit-loving boss lady to do, you ask?
Move back to New York where they dress like real people.
I kid. It’s flipping freezing there right now. Also, more importantly, we just painted the apartment a couple months ago. There’s literally no way I’m going to allow the ten hours of my life that I spent applying painter’s tape to 8,765,937 inches of crown molding to be thrown away.
While business formal environments certainly present their own set of challenges, business casual offices often get disregarded as “easy” environments where you can “wear whatever you want!”
As I’ve learned from working in both environments for long periods of time, they’re actually both extraordinarily challenging for women—especially women that have an interest in hanging onto their sartorial souls while simultaneously looking work appropriate.
In a business formal environment, if you’re really desperate, pretty much everyone knows you can throw on a dark suit and be safe. But in a business casual environment—certainly one in the San Francisco area—you’d look crazy coming into work on your first day at Google or [insert cool start-up here] clad in Brooks Brothers’ latest wools.
So, for the start-up or otherwise casual workplace, what’s a girl to do?
To be honest, there’s no cut and dry answer. For me, it all comes down to that intangible element of polish. The look featured today is a casual outfit that I sported for a work day filled with casual meetings last week. Even though I’m wearing trendy, faded wide-leg denim, I’ve offset that casual element with a more tailored cable knit turtleneck sweater and loose curls. My pointed-toe brown leather booties are bookended by this brown leather moto jacket, gratifying my inner love for a touch of the matchy-matchy, and really uniting/finishing the ensemble.
Whether its curled hair or a neat top not, a fresh cable knit sweater or even a crisp tee (like the one in this post), there are so many ways to finish off a “casual” outfit to make it look really polished… and thereby more professional. This might mean abandoning those sweaters that are covered in pilling, those t-shirts that are all stretched out at the neck, and those jeans with hems that are frayed for days. It’ll really help your professional rep, and you just might be surprised by how much it boosts your performance as well.
Plus, it’s a good excuse to go shopping… Amiright?
JEANS: 7 For All Mankind | SWEATER: Zara (old, but similar HERE, HERE and HERE in blush) | LEATHER JACKET: c/o Bernardo (on sale! and also very similar HERE) | BOOTS: Steve Madden (similar HERE) | BAG: Phillip Lim (black version HERE and other colors HERE) | LIP: Neutrogena (Warm Caramel – my favorite nude!) | SUNGLASSES: Retro Super Future c/o Ditto
If you’re anything like me, you typically buy a new item of clothing with a specific outfit in mind. Then, too often, the item only emerges from your closet if and only if an occasion arises for you to wear that exact outfit. The result? Some of your favorite pieces endure a level of neglect that can only be compared to Harry Potter pre-Hogwarts invitation.
Today, I’m excited to launch my “Triple Threat” series of posts where every couple weeks, I’ll explore multiple ways to wear one of my favorite seasonal staples. First up today is this beautiful blush cableknit cropped turtleneck sweater, that can go from workweek to weekend without a hitch. This piece encapsulates three of my favorite trends: (1) cropped silhouette, (2) chunky turtleneck style, (3) and blush hue.
Click directly on the individual images above for product details or see bottom of this post.
The cropped silhouette is likely the hardest thing to get over, since, let’s face it, the likelihood that I turn into Kendall Jenner and walk out my front door with eight inches of stomach showing is roughly equal to the likelihood that my Green Bay Packers win the Superbowl this year—nada. Both things make me sad, but both things are true.
Per the montage above, high-waisted bottoms and long layers are the crop top’s BFFs. For the office, this high-waisted pencil skirt serves as the perfect classic companion, and the coordinating blush pink coat offers a chic, monochromatic finale. For Saturday shopping, the high-waisted flare leg jeans and fur vest present a great 70s vibe, complemented by this bucket bag and brown booties. And, saving the best outing for last, layering this long button down (or this awesome tank if you want a more casual layer) with boyfriend jeans, this cool bomber jacket and sneakers makes for the perfect Sunday brunch ensemble.
Cropped turtlenecks, you’re about to get a whole lotta love.
MONDAY MEETING OUTFIT:
SATURDAY SHOPPING OUTFIT:
SUNDAY BRUNCH OUTFIT:
DRESS: Badgley Mischka (similar style HERE and HERE) | COAT: ICB (old, similar HERE, HERE and HERE) | SHOES: SJP Collection | BAG: M2Malletier (also HERE) | BELT: Ralph Lauren (old, similar HERE and HERE) | SUNGLASSES: Mui Mui c/o Ditto | LIP: Make Up For Ever (28)
After a winter-induced neutral binge, it felt great to bust out some color yesterday. My cobalt blue sheath dress and coordinating cobalt coat packed the one-two punch needed to brighten up even the dreariest of San Francisco days. For formal, conservative professional environments, I always find that a monochromatic look can present a really nice alternative to the traditional suit—offering all the formality with a higher style factor. Win-win for the good guys!
When needing to update my workout gear a couple months ago, I stumbled upon Carbon38—a new-to-me etailer that has the absolute coolest selection of activewear (umm, hello, look at THESE). After falling in love with the brand for their workout gear, I happened to notice that they also have some amazing pieces that would work for a ski trip—especially a bunch of pieces with the form and function to wear on and off the slopes. With an upcoming trip to Breckenridge on the calendar, I decided to give their ski-friendly activewear a try and am so glad I did. These Carbon38 pieces got me through a super cold, snow-filled weekend and then some.
~ see Look 1 details at bottom of post ~
This grey hoodie has the coolest, comfiest webbed thumbhole sleeve extensions that fit perfectly into their windproof gloves. I somehow forgot a scarf one morning on the slopes (I know, HOW?!) and I was able to pull up the hood and wear it under my hat and helmut, tightening the drawstrings which brought the mock neck comfortably up over the lower portion of my face. In the brutal cold of that morning, it absolutely saved me!
This vegan leather vest was such a perfect multi-tasker on the trip as well. It’s fleece-lined so served as an amazing layer during the day on the slopes (see it in action on instagram here), and then fit right in with jeans and over-the-knee boots for dinner and drinks that night.
~ see Look 2 details at bottom of post ~
You guys. This vest. After wearing the hoodie and leather vest on day one, I didn’t think it could get better. Yet another multi-tasker, this puffer vest might’ve just been my favorite piece of the bunch—which is really saying something. The chevron design makes for a slimmer take on the traditional puffer vest, featuring mesh insets between each panel. It provided the most wonderful extra layer of warmth under my parka (essential for how brutally cold it was!) while maintaining a level of breathability that kept me from turning into a sweaty mess while skiing.
~ see Look 3 details at bottom of post ~
Per the images above, you can see that the puffer vest also looks great off the slopes with jeans and a t-shirt. One of the best features of this beauty is the fact that it comes with a tiny little case and the entire vest can be packed down into basically one cubic centimeter. Ok, that’s a slight exaggeration, but for someone committed to a carryon, this packability feature alone made the vest an epic win.
Speaking of commitment to a carry on, apparently I was so committed to packing lightly, that I managed to completely forget to pack my snow boots. Lucky for me it only snowed about TEN inches while I was in Breckenridge so it was no big deal…
My Stuart Weitzman Lowland over-the-knee boots are always travel favorites during the winter because they take up so little space in my luggage, so these were my go-to aprés ski footwear. Otherwise, sans snow boots, I luckily happened to bring these Adidas Superstar sneakers which have rubber toes that kept any wet snow at bay.
Last but not least, I really upped my ski jacket game with this Adidas by Stella McCartney quilted bomber jacket. I’m obsessed with basically everything about the coat—the trendy cropped style, the perfect reflective grey hue, the oversized drawstring stand collar that served as the ultimate wind/snow shield, the jacket’s supreme functionality with thumbholes and cool internal harness, and the warmth warmth warmth! My ski pants are high-waisted which was covered perfectly by the jacket’s banded elastic waist, making the cropped coat more than able to keep out snow and cold.
~ see Look 4 details at bottom of post ~
Even the quality of their basic compression leggings really knocked my socks off—serving as an amazing layer underneath my ski pants (just wait ’til you see the rest of their leggings below!). I’ve got my eye on their bodysuits too (how sick is this one?!) for my next trip which I think would make for the comfiest base layer.
And if that wasn’t enough to wet your appetite, get a load of these suckers:
And now for all the outfit deets…
JEANS: Victoria Beckham (also HERE, and super similar style HERE) | T-SHIRT: J. Crew | VEST: c/o Carbon38 | SHOES: Stuart Weitzman | GLOVES: c/o Carbon38 | EARMUFFS: (old, similar HERE, HERE and HERE) | BAG: M2Malletier (also HERE) | NECKLACE: c/o Melinda Maria | LIP: Nars (Bansar)
JACKET: Stella McCartney c/o Carbon38 | LEGGINGS: c/o Carbon38 | SHIRT: Helly Hansen | SHOES: Stuart Weitzman | HAT: c/o Jocelyn | GLOVES: c/o Carbon38 | STOLE: (old, similar HERE and HERE) | SUNGLASSES: Ray-Ban
This post was produced in collaboration with Carbon38.
DRESS: Lafayette 148 (on sale and comes in a gorgeous cobalt blue and ruby red) | VEST: ABS (old, similar HERE and HERE) | BOOTIES: c/o Dune London (similar HERE, HERE, and HERE) | BAG: M2Malletier | EARRINGS: c/o Ann Taylor | BELT: old but similar HERE and HERE
Whether you’re running to the grocery store in ripped jeans (I’ve been living in these favorites lately) or heading to the office Monday morning in a tailored turtleneck midi dress, I’m not sure there’s anything I love more in the colder months than a good fur vest. I’ve had the one depicted above for several years, but am obsessed with this similar version and additional options here. With longer fur vests like the one I’m wearing today, belting is a great option—especially for maintaining the defined waistline that’s established by my fit-and-flare midi turtleneck dress underneath (FYI – it’s on sale, and it’s AMAZING). Come lunchtime that belt may loosen or vanish (depending on whether I decide that this Monday can only be conquered with the help of my BFF Umami Burger), but I thought that starting the day off with a good old fashioned waistline was at least a nice gesture.
Happy Monday! Only five days to go…
In weeks past, I’ve shared the details on our wedding ceremony and our wedding reception, and today I’m excited to continue my Wedding Wednesday series with details on our day-after photo shoot. These wedding posts are a slight departure from my style-focused working girl blog, but it’s been a joy to share and relive some of these special moments here in hopes that I might pass along some of the wedding planning wisdom I gleaned along the way. As a working girl, I know how challenging it is to juggle your real job and wedding planning—which is basically a full-time job in itself—so I’m eager to share tips and recommendations from our wedding experience to hopefully ease the journey for those of you currently facing wedding planning challenges, or expecting to face them in the future! Today I’m continuing the wedding series with details on our day-after session, with information on (A) what the heck a day-after photo shoot is, and (B) why you should consider one for your own wedding…
“Day-After” photo shoot? Sounds absurd, I know, but let me give you the lowdown…
Going into the wedding planning process, Rich and I both really wanted to keep the old-school tradition of not seeing each other on our wedding day until I was actually walking down the aisle. However, nowadays, many couples choose to have a “first look” moment where they see each other after they’ve both finished getting ready before the ceremony. Some couples feel that this is a special moment for just the two of them (without the rest of their guests around) and, perhaps most of all, it allows them to have extra time to take all of those special couples’ photos before the ceremony, so that the time between the ceremony and reception isn’t too packed.
A first look is especially encouraged by photographers and wedding planners if you have a late afternoon wedding (like ours which was at 3pm) with a reception immediately to follow (also, like ours). But, we were problem children. There was no changing our 3pm ceremony time, yet we were also insistent on not doing a first look, so our photographers and wedding coordinators were rather concerned about timing for pictures.
When I was relaying this challenge to a good friend of mine, she mentioned having heard of a “day-after shoot”—something I’d never heard of before, but something that turned out to be a total godsend.
A day-after session is exactly as it sounds—you schedule a time with your photographer either the day after your wedding, or in our case, two days later, to get back into your wedding day duds—dress, hair, makeup and all—and take some of those special wedding photos that you may not have had time to take on the actual day due to scheduling constraints.
On our wedding day, Rich and I both (A) wanted to wait to see each other until the ceremony and (B) wanted our reception to start as soon as possible after the ceremony so that we could get to the dancing and debauchery that was eagerly anticipated by all. On the official day, we certainly wanted all of the special moments captured, but we were less excited about stepping out of the “moment” (sorry for the cliché, but I mean it) to spend lots of time taking the more formal pictures.
Our 3pm ceremony and a 5pm reception meant that we would have a little over an hour between the end of the Catholic ceremony and the grand march of the wedding party into the ballroom. When you consider that this hour includes photos in the church of both families and the wedding party AND transportation to our rehearsal dinner venue where we were taking outdoor shots in the gardens, we were going to be cutting it CLOSE.
I think for anyone (but perhaps because we’re particularly into photography) the pressure to get really spectacular wedding photos is huge! By choosing to do a day-after shoot all of the stress of a tight photography timetable was lifted—which actually resulted in better photos, because we weren’t stressing about timing. Since we knew that we would be getting back into our wedding best two days later for more couple photos, we didn’t worry out about getting the perfect staged photos on our actual day, which allowed us to just fully enjoy every moment. Knowing that we had that extra day completely lifted any pressure or anxiety on the day-of and allowed us to spend the hour we had focused on getting all of the family photos and wedding party photos done well. Since we were so stress-free, the process went much quicker than expected and as you saw in this post and this post, we ended up having time to spare to get lots of shots of the two of us which turned out great—likely because we felt zero pressure.
If you’re doing a first look and/or you’re having a morning or early afternoon wedding with several hours between the ceremony and reception, you’ve got nothing to worry about. You’ll have plenty of time between the ceremony and reception to take all the pictures you want. But, if your ceremony is in the afternoon and you want to keep to the traditional no-peeking-until-the-aisle thing, don’t let anyone convince you that a first look is your only option! Hey, it’s your wedding day, and thanks to the day-after shoot, you can actually have your cake and eat it too. ; )
We knew we would be too exhausted the day after our wedding to look halfway decent in photos, so we scheduled the shoot to actually be two days after our big day—which was the day before we left for our honeymoon. It ended up being really special, because we were each able to put on our wedding garments again one last time. While Rich will get more use out of his tuxedo, I will of course never get the chance to wear my wedding dress again, so being able to wear it for one more afternoon with him was magic.
BUT HOW DID YOU KEEP EVERYTHING CLEAN?! This definitely can be tricky, so plan carefully here. Since our ceremony and reception were both indoors, I didn’t face the same intense dirt-on-hem-of-dress issues that brides with outdoor weddings face. As previously mentioned, we did take pictures in the gardens on our wedding day, so there definitely was some dirt on the underside of my dress, but as you can see in the pictures today, not enough to really notice. Otherwise, I got through the reception without any spills, and one hour into dancing I changed into my dancing dress which took the beating during the more aggressive hours of dancing and drinks. For Rich, he just had his shirt express dry-cleaned the next day, and his dark tux didn’t show any spills or sweat from the reception, so we were good to go!
If you remember my previous wedding posts, you’ll note that I chose to do my hair a bit differently for the day-after shoot. I had always been really torn about my wedding day ‘do—going back and forth between wearing my hair all the way up or just half-up—but decided to go with an updo on the big day. My thick, naturally straight hair immediately falls out of any semblance of curl when humidity is high, and since August in Milwaukee usually sees a good amount of humidity, I decided to play it safe for the real deal and go all up. For the day-after shoot, however, it was fun to have my hair stylist switch it up a bit and do the half-up style that I had always loved as well. Luckily the weather was clear as a bell that afternoon so it worked out nicely.
Thanks for all of your emails, comments, etc. about my wedding posts. I have lots of posts to come on wedding registry, honeymoon and more but if you have other specific areas you’d like me to chat about, I’m all ears! Let me know in the comments below : )
Photography by Front Room Photography
CULOTTES: Rebecca Taylor (similar HERE & HERE) | SWEATER: Zara (old, similar HERE, HERE & HERE) | COAT: Andrew Marc | SCARF: c/o Tommy Hilfiger (sold out HERE & HERE) | BAG: 3.1 Phillip Lim (also HERE) | LIPS: Make Up For Ever (28)
A monochromatic look always comes alive with a little pattern and texture play. The cableknit of my crewneck sweater, bouclé texture of the coat, smooth silk of the culottes and geometric pattern of the scarf give the classic navy look a modern spin that might be monochromatic, but isn’t monotonous.
I mean, is there anything better than navy?
Happy Thursday everyone!
First off, I have to say that I LOVE this shirtdress… but am a little confused by it. If you check it out in ivory at retailers here or here, you’ll see why I thought I was getting a midi/knee-length dress. The length looks to be correctly depicted in black, but in ivory and green, it’s much longer on the model than in real life. As you can see in the pictures today, it’s not quite that long. I mean, I’m tall (5’10”), but I’m not THAT tall. I’d have to be Yao Ming to make it look this short, and Yao Ming doesn’t wear a lot of shirtdresses.
So this dress isn’t quite long enough on me for the office, but for all of my petite friends out there, you might just be able to make it work. If you’re tall like me, you could definitely wear it as a tunic over trousers (like the shirtdress I styled here). Regardless of the length though, I fell in love with the dress anyway, and in true shirtdress fashion, it’s been one of my most-worn staples of late. I’ve extolled the virtues of shirtdresses many times before, and won’t wax on about this favorite wardrobe staple again, but if you’re looking for a seasonless dress that can take you from desk to drinks without a hitch, I’d recommend investing in a silk shirtdress. Like now. I can almost guarantee it will be one of the top ten—no, top FIVE most worn items in your closet. And, the good news is that this one also comes in black, army green, and two different stripes. Yahtzee.
I wore this outfit last weekend and love the contrast between the light ivory silk shirtdress and the heavy grey chunky knit sweater. San Francisco’s mercurial climate demands lots of layering, so this combo kept me comfy everywhere from running errands and shopping during the day to dinner and drinks at night. I’ve also been keeping this sweater at my desk lately because it’s the coziest thing to throw on during chilly afternoons. It’s like a big, blankety hug. Sometimes I nap under my desk in it.
Kidding, Mom. Kidding. That happened ONE time.
Happy Friday, everyone! Have an amazing weekend!
This B-Low the Belt belt has been an off-duty favorite of mine for months, so it was super fun to take the weekend staple accessory and incorporate it into my work wardrobe. The retro vibe of the burgundy corduroy a-line skirt is nicely echoed in the vintage charm of the double buckle belt, making for an office-ready look that’s professional and on trend. Another win for those of us interested in looking professionally appropriate without having to turn into style-starved corporate drones.
SKIRT: Holding Horses (runs a bit small, I recommend going one size up!) | TOP: Splendid (similar HERE, HERE & HERE) | BELT: B-Low the Belt | BAG: M2Malletier | SHOES: Saint Laurent (similar HERE) | SUNGLASSES: Ray-Ban | LIP: Nars (Bansar)
Happy Monday, friends!