Subtle Pattern Mixing

•• Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Chicago style blogger, polka dot dress, striped shirt, pattern mixing, black and white

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Dress – The Limited (similar) | Shirt – The Limited via Poshmark (similar) | Cardigan – The Limited (similar) | Shoes – Bandolino (same) | Necklace – The Limited (similar)

Welcome to Monday, everyone! How was your weekend? I have a lovely low-key three days (yes, remember, I had Friday off) that basically consisted of running, grilling, and watching the first season of The Glades. I lead an exciting life, don’t I? Oh, I also taught someone how to use Facebook.

I also put together this outfit as inspired by this Erté painting chose by Salazar for this week’s Style Imitating Art.

image Spring Rain

Originally I was thinking my green pants with my polka dot chambray shirt but then I remembered that today I have a meeting with some auditors at work and decided that green pants and chambray might be a bit too casual.

So, instead, I went with subtle pattern mixing with polka dots and stripes and brought in some purple and green in the cardigan and the necklace. I also tried to find some art deco architecture to stand in front of but, alas, I could only find Victorian.

First world problems, right?

Linking up with Fizz & Frosting | On the Daily Express | More Pieces of Me | Basic Training Corporate Style

It’s A Good Friday

•• Casual Clothes - Casual Friday

Chicago style blogger, navy and green

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Cardigan – The Limited (similar) | Tank top – The Limited (similar) | Jeans – Express (similar) | Necklace – clothing swap (similar) | Shoes – Nine West (similar)

Awhile ago I got some requests for more casual outfits. Well, to be honest, I am one of those people who tends to wear mostly workout clothes on weekends or, if I’m feeling spunky, I’ll put on jeans, a tank top, and a cardigan. Nothing too crazy.

But, today is a holiday for me and I took this casual outfit a few weeks ago before we left for vacation so I thought I’d share it with you. It’s too casual for my office but it’s perfect for a day I’m not at work.

So, here you go. A casual outfit!

Or, if you’re really just here for the work-appropriate stuff, head over to Basic Training – Corporate Style where I’m being interviewed about my job and my work-wear.

Chicago style blogger, green, navy cardigan, boat shoes

A New Look For Spring

•• Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Chicago style blogger, floral skirt, blue cardigan

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Cardigan – J. Crew (same) | Camisole – The Limited (similar) | Skirt – LOFT via Poshmark (similar) | Shoes – Bandolino (similar) | Necklace – J. Crew via Poshmark (similar)

Good morning! Have you noticed the new look around these parts? Lindsay of White Oak Creative just redid my blog layout and I love it! She took a new logo that a friend made for me and designed my new blog layout around it and I think she did an amazing job.

I did not do such an amazing job taking these photos, though! I don’t think they do my new redesign justice. It was one of those situations where I decided on a location and then some random lady walking through our neighborhood decided to kind of stop and stare and wait for us to take the photos. I usually don’t care but she was literally the only other person on the sidewalk besides us and it was just so strange! Hence the awkward quickie photo shoot.

Also, yes, I’m wearing this floral skirt again. Today I’m interpreting this outfit from Poor Little It Girl that’s part of this month’s Pinterest challenge board. I don’t own any floral tops so I swapped the print from the top to the bottom. Although looking at that photo makes me want pink heels. Or is that too ridiculous?

Linking up with Work Clothes, I Suppose and Vodka Infused Lemonade

Hardcore Lace

•• Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Chicago style blogger wears a pink blazer, lace shirt, and faux leather pants

Chicago style blogger, pink blazer, lace top, pearls

Blazer – H&M (similar) | Shirt – Banana Republic Outlet (similar) | Pants – Vince Camuto via Macy’s (similar) | Necklace – JF&A Show (similar) | Shoes – c/o fibi & clo (same)

Today I’m mixing up a girly top-half with a hardcore bottom half. Pink, pearls and lace combined with black faux leather? What was I thinking??

Well, I was thinking that today’s Pinterest inspiration photo is a pink blazer with a lace top. I was also thinking I had a similar outfit saved on my own Pinterest board from Ask Away Blog.

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So, since Wednesday is not a jeans day at my office I decided I’d go with the black faux leather pants. But putting heels with them just seemed too over-the-top for work. Hence the flats!

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Adding flats to these faux leather pants and toning them down with  more feminine pieces up top makes it seem less like I’m going out to a club and more like I’m going to the office. Which I am. So I think that works out.

On a separate note, I went to the BEST wine bar on Monday night! I’ve always wanted a nice wine bar that wasn’t too loud, served items other than wine, and was close to my apartment. Turns out that there is one. At least on Monday nights Paola’s Vinum on Jefferson and Van Buren is a great spot to buy a bottle of wine and just chill with your friends.

Chicago style blogger, how to wear faux leather pants to work

Tailoring A Pair of Pants

•• Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Chicago style blogger, red blouse, black moto vest

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Blouse – Express (similar) | Vest – Target (similar) | Pants – The Limited | Shoes – Bandolino (same) | Necklace – NY & Co (similar)

Let me tell you a little story about these pants. I’m pretty sure you’ve never seen them on the blog before. The matching suit jacket? Yes. The pants? No. Why not?

Well, this is one of the suits I bought almost six years ago before I started my current job. And six years ago flared leg pants were still in style. I’m not talking bootcut, I’m talking FLARED. So, these were flared. And then they hung in my closet for the past few years with me debating whether or not to get rid of them.

But I HATE shopping for pants. Hate it. So I decided I’d try these on one last time before deciding if they were going in the donation pile. And they still fit. Which is when I decided I’d ask the tailoring lady at my dry cleaner if she could make them into straight legged pants. Which she said she could for the price of $26.

Chicago style blogger, flared leg to straight leg pants

Now they’re a tad too long but that’s an easy fix. Well, I mean, I’ll still be paying someone to do it since I can’t sew, but at least I don’t have to go pants shopping!

Gray Dress and Black Boots

•• Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Chicago style blogger wears gray dress with black blouse and boots

Chicago style blogger wears a gray dress with a black blouse

Dress – Nordstrom Rack (similar) | Blouse – clothing swap (similar) | Boots – Cole Haan (similar)

After a beautiful weekend our winter weather seems to be back for another round. Hence the layers, tights, and boots. That’s okay, though, because in the past when I’ve worn this dress I’ve mentioned wanting to wear it with my knee high boots. And although I’ve worn it with my ankle boots this really is the first time I’ve worn it with my tall boots. And I really like it!

Anyway, speaking of the nice weather, how did I spend my weekend? Well, after running my last long run (!!) of this current half marathon training cycle I showed up at the PAWS Chicago warehouse to help sort donations. Almost four hours later I’d sorted so much dog food, cat food, toys, leashes, and beds I was amazed at how much people donate. The volunteer coordinator, though, said that as fast as the food comes in it goes back out through the pet food pantry.

At least I had some cute helpers?

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Also, when Jason was taking my pictures in this outfit he mentioned that I didn’t seem to be very excited to be having my picture taken. “Do something interesting,” he said.

Okay.

Chicago style blogger, gray dress, black boots

Linking up with Fizz & Frosting | On the Daily Express | More Pieces of Me | Basic Training Corporate Style

The Cat is Back

•• Casual Friday - Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Chicago style blogger, camel blazer, striped shirt, leopard scarf

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Blazer – old (similar) | Shirt – LOFT (similar) | Scarf – NYC Street Vendor (similar) | Jeans – Express via Poshmark (similar) | Shoes – Jessica Simpson via DSW (same)

So clearly I put this outfit together before I realized the weather was going to skyrocket to almost 70 degrees! Still, it doesn’t mean all is lost. Nope, I’ll just ditch the blazer and roll up my sleeves when I’m outside. I’ve got a doctor’s appointment this morning anyway so the fewer things I have to take off the better.

Also, it’s been awhile since I’ve paired stripes and leopard. I used to wear this combination all the time but gave it a break because I was pretty sure you were sick of seeing it. But guess what? It’s baaaack!

In other news, Wednesday night I had the best time with the Windy City Blogger Collective and Blaze Pizza! Blaze was amazing and treated us like rockstars. We even got to go behind the counter and make our own pizzas. Complete with aprons and hats.

Blaze Pizza Chicago

Check me out in the foreground. Thanks to WCBC for the photo!

Blaze Pizza is an awesome concept. You can order straight off the menu or, just like Subway or Chipotle, you can tell them what ingredients you want. Gluten free or regular crust? White, pesto, spicy or regular red sauce? Your choice of five different cheese (or mix and match), tons of veggies and lots of meat.  The crust is super thin so each pizza takes minimal time to cook. Great for when you want to grab something on your way home or just need a quick meal.

Blaze even has a liquor license now so you can have your pizza with a beer or some wine.

Blaze Pizza Chicago

And don’t forget your s’mores pie for dessert!

Blaze Pizza Chicago S'mores Pie

5 Ways to Wear a Short Sleeved Sweater

•• Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Chicago style blogger, polka dot sweater, pencil skirt

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Sweater – Old Navy (similar plain; similar printed) | Skirt – The Limited (similar) | Belt – The Limited (similar) | Shoes – 6pm.com (similar)

A few years ago I thought to myself, “Why would anyone want to own a short sleeved sweater? When would you even wear such a thing?” Turns out you can wear it quite a bit as evidenced here:

5 ways to wear a  short sleeved polka dot sweater

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Layered over another shirt, under a blazer or jacket, or just all on it’s own, the short sleeved sweater is great for those in-between months where it might be cooler in the morning but warmer in the afternoon. Basically, spring in Chicago.

Green Pants and a Bright Top

•• Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Chicago style blogger, green pants

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Cardigan – The Limited (similar and freaking adorable) | Shirt – Banana Republic Outlet (similar) | Necklace – The Limited (similar) | Pants – Express (similar) | Shoes – Bandolino (similar)

One of the things you guys told me when I did my two year anniversary reader survey was that outfit posts are hands-down your favorites. So, in the interest of giving you all what you want, here’s a bonus Wednesday outfit post!

For the month of April there’s still a Pinterest inspiration challenge going on and I’m planning to use Wednesdays as my weekly participation.

Which is why today you’re getting such bold colors. Because here’s the original inspiration from Nu Sophisticate:

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Instead of the powder pink color I went with the more saturated fuchsia. And instead of those adorable sandals she’s wearing I just stuck with closed-toe nude pumps. Overall, though, I’m pleasantly surprised at how much I liked the fuchsia and green together.

Also, thank god for spell-check. I can’t spell fuchsia to save my life.

I’ve worn these green pants quite a bit but haven’t really paired them with much color. Now I’m thinking that needs to change! Cobalt blue, anyone?

P.S. Who else is excited that it’s warm enough to wear ankle pants again?? Unless you work somewhere that doesn’t allow ankle pants. Which I personally think is some out-dated thinking.

The Bow Dress is Back

•• Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Chicago style blogger, Chicago boutique, Comfort Me Boutique, bowtie print dress

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Dress – Comfort Me Boutique | Cardigan – Target via clothing swap (similar) | Necklace – Groopdealz (similar) | Shoes – Bandolino (same)

Look! The bow dress is back! I’m wearing it to a meeting today with my professional organization on the 63rd floor of the Sears (it will always be the Sears to me) Tower. Which means I kept it simple today with a black and gold palette. My husband said I looked very fancy.

Oh, you know what else is back? These heels. See, I was walking home from work one day last week when the heel of the right one got caught in a sidewalk crack and was ripped all to hell. Thankfully I’ve found a Shoe Hospital by my work and they were able to recover the heel in the exact same material. You can’t even tell! Well, until I catch it in another sidewalk crack.

Chicago style blogger, Chicago boutique, Comfort Me Boutique, bowtie print dress