Archive | March, 2010

How Low Can You Go? Low Necklines at Work?

31 Mar

Issa Silk-Jersey Knot Dress, Net-a-porter.com, $405

Is it just us or are necklines getting lower and lower on dresses and tops nowadays?  We were browsing in the dresses section of Net-a-Porter.com and were shocked – no, appalled – to see the dress pictured above listed as a “work dress.”  Exactly what kind of work did Net-a-Porter have in mind when they decided this dress fit into the work category? 

If we walked into a law office wearing a please-look-at-me (no, let’s rephrase that to “please-look-at-us”) neckline like this one, our reputation at work would be totally ruined.  Who can take someone seriously when their C -cups are half exposed?  Is this a joke?  A mistake?  Did Net-a-Porter truly intend this dress to be categorized as a work piece?  Even a camisole or scarf could not save this plunging neckline.

Perhaps some smaller-chested women can get away with slightly low necklines (and we would not characterize the neckline pictured above as slightly plunging, by the way – with any more plunge, the model’s belly button just might be exposed).  However, we would advise staying away from low necklines altogether in the office unless you’re able to use a scarf or camisole to raise the neckline a bit.  If you’re the teasing kind, feel free to wear your sexy, cleavage-baring pieces on nights and weekends when you’re out on the town, but please leave those pieces in your closet when headed to your day job.  Low necklines send the wrong message in a professional environment.  No one has an excuse to try to check our your assets (that’s what sexual harassment lawsuits are made of), but please don’t encourage anyone to do so either by wearing something inappropriate that screams “check-us-out”! 

Perhaps our friends over at Net-a-Porter are marketing to some, ahem, “working girls” who aren’t exactly in conservative fields.  We’re thinking that we’re probably preaching to the choir here, so we’ll stop now.  Just had to get this off our chest (no pun intended)!

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Monday Must (or Lust)-Haves: Gorgeous Red Flats

29 Mar

Gabriella Rocha 'Neve', Zappos, were $79.95, now $70.36

We’ve mentioned before that we find it a necessity to wear ballet flats for our morning daycare drop-offs and sprints to the office.  (DC sidewalks are not kind to the stiletto.)   In spite of our acquiescence to comfort, we will not sacrifice our love of style.  Just any old flat will not do!

There is nothing like a brightly colored ballet flat to keep you looking chic, but feeling comfortable.  This is why we love a flat in a gorgeous red.  In our view, it’s a professional woman’s must-have.  Red shoes will give a blah outfit some oomph and can keep you from looking matronly when you do need/want to wear flats!  Thought we’d share a few of the red flats we’ve been eyeing with you.  (We are especially in love with the Gabriella Rochas with the ankle straps pictured above and the DKNYs pictured below.  May just have to squeeze these into our spring shopping budget.)

DKNYC 'Stella' Red Patent Flats, Zappos, were $98, now $77

Repetto BB Distressed Leather Flats, Saks, $250.00

Daniblack Master red patent flats, were $135, now $67.50 (sizes 5.5-7.5)

We’re not generally into Eddie Bauer shoes, but these Eddie Bauer red flats with gold hardware are a cute find (and on clearance too!).   And we couldn’t resist mentioning these cutesy, penny-loafer-inspired Aldo Shoes either.

Next to red, animal print ballet flats are our faves.  We’ll have to do a post on those someday soon!

Spring Has Officially Sprung!

23 Mar

Stress ball, Shoplet.com, $1.65 each

Spring has sprung and we hope you’re all enjoying it!  We wanted to check in with you to let you know that we’ve not fallen off the face of planet Earth. 

For us, springtime has ushered in quite an intense period at work.  In our experience, the litigious and their counsel come out of some sort of quasi-hibernation as temperatures start to rise.  In light of this crazy-busy period, we haven’t really been on our blogging game for the past couple of weeks.  That being said, we salute all the bloggers out there who are able to effectively juggle stressful work, mommyhood, and consistent, daily blogging!!! 

When we started this blog just weeks ago, we had no idea how challenging an endeavor it would be to consistently post meaningful information on a daily basis given our other obligations.  The first few weeks have definitely been exciting and we look forward to getting back on our blogging game very soon.

In the meantime, we think we may need to pick up something like the stress ball pictured above – it has cheerful, bright colors and its manufacturer claims that playing with its strings will relieve stress.   We’re a little doubtful, but we’re willing to try almost anything cheap, quick, healthy and lawful at this point to get out of our funk.  If you’ve got other stress relief options (rated G and PG only, please) that we may want to consider, please feel free to share!

Ciao!

Go Green! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

17 Mar

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!  Are you wearing your green today?  With the first day of Spring just a few days away, we are thrilled to see so many shades of green all around us!  As much as we loathed winter this year (ugh, Snowpocalypse will forever be ingrained in our memory!), we are welcoming in the warmer temps, softer colors and sunshine with open arms!  Buh-bye, Old Man Winter!   Hello, Springtime!

Green is a color that reminds us to be environmentally responsible, but it is also a color that symbolizes energy and revitalization.  It is a quite refreshing hue.  As the grass begins to turn green, we’re more than happy to add some more green to our wardrobe!  We wanted to share some of our fave green lust-worthy items with you in honor of St. Patrick’s Day!  Enjoy!

We started with the Alexander McQueen skull scarf pictured above in green & purple (AlexanderMcQueen.com, $260) (not sure whether the skull motif can pass as work-appropriate on a day other than Casual Friday, but we just had to include this scarf anyway!  May Mr. McQueen rest in peace.)

The necklace below could add just the right touch of color to an otherwise boring work outift.

Anthology Necklace in Green Howlite, Nordstrom, $45

 We’re always looking for interesting belts and think this one definitely fits the bill.  With a white blouse and navy skirt, it might just be work-appropriate, especially on a casual Friday or a meeting-free day. 

Maru sash, Anthropologie, $38

 The dress below is arguably a bluish-green, but the description used with it calls it green, so we’re going with that!  Love it!  We’d have to check out the measurements to see where this would fall on us.  The slit may make it not so work-appropriate if the hem is not long enough, but it’s still a beauty (although definitely not in our budget, we can still appreciate its beauty). 

Giambattista Valli Silk Dress, MyTheresa.com, $2,245+

For those who love to splurge, we could not stop daydreaming about this to-die-for Lanvin tote (a  splurge with a hefty price tag of $1,575).  And this  lime Ralph Lauren cardigan has been marked down from $740 to $370.

Also, more options in green for the budget conscious…we like these sheath dresses at The Limited ($79.50) and J. Crew (now $180, was $225).

There you have it – more items to be added to our (and perhaps your) neverending wish list!  So go revitalize your wardrobe with some green for Spring, ladies!

Monday Must-Have: The Skinny!

15 Mar

Photos by Marcio Madeira, Courtesy of Firstview.com/Style.com

If you work in a conservative field, accessories may be your only way to squeeze at least a wee bit of creativity and pizzazz into what might otherwise be a dull, boooooring wardrobe.  Belts, one of our favorite accessories, can serve so many purposes – they have a slimming effect, distract attention from problem spots, add just the right pop of color to a neutral outfit, and transform a Plain Jane outfit into a more memorable one. 

Belts were all over the 2010 Fashion Week runways; thank goodness the skinny belt is still around because that means we won’t have to donate all those belts we bought in past seasons.   Although the looks pictured above are for Fall 2010, (with the addition of slacks or a skirt, of course) similar looks can definitely be used in the workplace during this transition period between winter and spring.  Perhaps the cardigan and coat could stand to be a bit less chunky for springtime though. 

So go grab yourselves a skinny belt (or two or three) and if you already have some in your belt collection, wrap one around your cardigan or jacket for a more updated look!  (We see that the models have slightly looped belts that were a bit too long for them; glad to know that is actually fashionable because we’ve done that on more than one occasion, not knowing if we were committing some unwritten fashion crime or not (smile!)).

MIND YOUR MANOLOS: Shoe Care & Maintenance

12 Mar

Fab Feet Shoe Care Travel Kit, Target, $12.99

From time to time, we must stop to assess where we here at Corner Office Chic are falling short of “Corner Office Chic” standards (you have to practice what you preach, after all).  As crazy stressful as this work week has been, believe us, we’ve committed a number of chic-standard violations so the assessment results haven’t been at their optimum this week.  Today, in particular, we’ve concluded that we need to do a much better job in the shoe maintenance department. 

We have to admit that, while we have a fabulous shoe collection, we’ve never been as on point with maintaining our shoes as we should be.  (At least we’re not in denial about this issue.)   If you’ve spent the small fortune on shoes that we have, please do your shoes justice and keep them looking as close to new as you possibly can (yes, we’re talking to ourselves too).  There’s no point in buying gorgeous (not to mention expensive) shoes, if they’re just going to end up dust-ridden and turned over.  Even Manolos, Choos and Louboutins can look bad (yes, bad) if you don’t care for them properly.  Plus, as with everything in our wardrobe, proper care results in longer wear.

We saw the travel shoe kit at Target shown above and recalled the days when we did a better job at keeping our shoes in good shape.  Ideally, you should take care of your shoes at home but, if you’ve got the packed after-work schedule that we do, there may be no time for such luxuries as shining shoes at home!  In that case, you may want to keep a kit like the one above hidden away in your office for emergency shoe shines.  Believe it or not, we’ve been in situations where we’ve either accidentally stepped in mud puddles or found ourselves walking through a dusty construction area, leaving our shoes undesirably dirty.  In those situations, we could make a quick stop in the ladies’ room on the way to our office, wipe the goo off with water & a paper towel, and then head to our office to give them a quick shine.  Walking into a meeting with the appearance that you’ve been dancing in flour is not corner office chic.

As for repairs (you know when your heel tap inconveniently comes loose or you have some other issue that is not do-it-yourself), find yourself a great cobbler (a good cobbler is right up there with a good tailor – although we have to admit that we’re still searching for the perfect tailor).  We were fortunate enough to find a fabulous cobbler close to work; thus, we can drop off our the shoes first thing in the morning and they’re ready within a day or so for evening pick-up.

Well, there you have it!  Lesson for today:  MIND YOUR MANOLOS (or, whatever your brand of preference).  We know, we know…Something else to keep track of as if we don’t have enough to worry about as it is!  (If it makes you feel any better, guys have to shine their shoes too).  No one said looking corner office chic would be easy!

Monday’s Must-Have: The Timeless Trench

8 Mar

Jil Sander Trench Coat, Net-a-Porter.com, $1,895

We are soooooo thrilled that the trench coat is a timeless piece.  What we adore about this season’s trench is that it comes in vibrant colors.  After experiencing Snowpocalypse 2010 and alternating between charcoal grey, dark brown, and plain ole black coats for most of the winter, we can’t wait to put on some springtime color!  No better way to usher color into your career wardrobe than in your outerwear.  You can flirt with color a little more in your selection of outerwear than you can with other pieces because you take coats and other outerwear off before starting a meeting or hearing.  So show a bit of your creative side!  Pick a conservatively cut trench coat in a bold, express-yourself color!  Here are some of the head-turning colors we’ve seen in trenches for the season:

Burberry Ruffled Trench, Nordstrom, $795.00

Bottega Veneta, Net-a-Porter.com, $1,100

Below are some more budget-conscious picks:

Michael Kors Trench, Nordstrom, $138

Impermeable Platinum by Weatherproof, Nordstrom, $98

Old Navy Trench, $49.50

And for the wild ones among us, here’s a zebra print Lauren by Ralph Lauren for ya ($199 at both Lord & Taylor and Macy’s)!   (While we might not be bold enough to wear this one to work, we’re seriously considering it for non-work outfits.  Cute, cute!  Would definitely want to try it on first though since prints like this one aren’t always the most flattering to all body types.)