Tag Archives: dress

Finally, an eShakti dress!

Office Appropriate Outfits - Fall · Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring · Office Appropriate Outfits - Summer

Two things to note before I get on with the rest of this post.

1. I wore this dress and took these photos before fall decided to descend on Chicago. I am definitely not wearing it today! But I did wear it twice in the past two weeks. Once to a bridal shower and once to work. These photos are from when I wore it to work.

2. eShakti sent me this dress free of charge with the only stipulation that I use their “customize” feature.

Now, with that out of the way…

eShakti customized dress

Dress – eShakti (same style, different colors) | Shoes – Sole Society (same) | Jacket –  Langford Market (similar)

For at least a year I’ve admired eShakti dresses on Librarian for Life and Style and was a teeny bit jealous that eShakti kept contacting her to try out their customize a dress option. So, I finally decided I’d spend my own money on one when they were having their Buy One, Get One Free sale. I even added some to my cart but had to wait until I got paid. Then, lo and behold, they contacted ME!

So, I went to their site and found a few that I could see wearing either dressed up or down. I just had to decide how I wanted to customize it. With eShakti each dress has a series of customization options that include things as simple as changing the sleeves, neckline or length all the way to being as complicated as entering your specific measurements.

eshakti_measurements

I went with the simpler option and took a dress with elbow-length sleeves that was supposed to hit below the knee and made it sleeveless and asked that it hit above the knee.

I know from reading Jen’s blog that eShakti tends to err on the side of making their dresses and skirts a little longer than what you ask for which is why I asked for above the knee. As you can see, it’s a perfect length! eShakti customized knit dress

The one measurement they don’t ask for that I wish they did was torso length. As in, the distance from the tops of your shoulders to your natural waist. I find that those of us with short torsos tend to end up with shoulder straps that are too long. The dress does pull and bunch a bit strangely across my chest and I’m not sure if that’s because the shoulder straps are too long or too short.

Regardless, it’s SUPER comfortable because it’s knit AND it has pockets. Pockets! In fact, most of their dresses do. It’s also really high quality and has definitely made me an eShakti convert. The next time I want to buy a dress I’m pretty sure I’ll be going there.

Linking up with Fashionably Employed More Pieces of Me | On the Daily Express

  

My Favorite Things

Office Appropriate Outfits - Summer

I noticed last week that you all seem to get a kick out of it when I let Chewie steal the show. So, here he is again.

Blue cardigan with black dress and sandalsCardigan – J. Crew (similar) | Dress – The Limited (similar) | Necklace – NY & Co (similar) | Shoes – Vince Camuto (similar)

I mean, I hope you think the outfit is cute. It IS my favorite dress, after all.

Blue cardigan, blue dress, blue sandals and black dressAnd I know that this outfit is super matchy-matchy with the cardigan, shoes and necklace but sometimes it’s fun to use a solid neutral base to highlight another brighter color.

Or, you know, you just want to wear all your favorite things for no real reason. I don’t have anything too exciting going on at work today. I don’t have anywhere fun to be. I just wanted to wear this outfit (which, to be honest, has been worn many times before but not photographed).

So, tell me, you have certain pieces you just love to wear more often than others, right?

Little black dress with blue accessories

 

  

Put a bow on it

Office Appropriate Outfits - Summer

Happy Friday! Today is my last day at my current job and we’re having an appreciation lunch for some departmental liaisons which means I’m only in the office half a day. What could be a better way to end six years here? Well, wearing my favorite bow dress certainly adds some extra joy to a day that will be bittersweet.

bow-dress-denim-jacket-3

Jacket – Langford Market (similar) | Dress – Comfort Me Boutique (same) | Belt – Target (same) | Shoes – MIA (similar) | Necklace – The Limited (same)

If you had told me seven years ago that I would be moving on to my second job in downtown Chicago and living in a two bedroom apartment in the city with an 8 month old puppy I would not have believed you.

I moved to the city area for this job six years ago and in those six years my life has changed so much. I’ve grown so much professionally and personally. I’ve learned skills I didn’t even know I had. I’ve made more friends in six years than I had in all of high school and college combined.

bow-dress-denim-jacket-2

Everyone keeps asking me if I’m excited to start my new job and the answer is yes! I am looking forward to the new challenge which is not something I thought I would ever say about myself, either. I will certainly miss some of my coworkers and some of the perks of my current job but I’m ready to do something new.

As I mentioned on Monday, I don’t know what the new job will mean for the blog but hopefully you’ll stick around for the ride. I’m sure it will be fun for everyone!

bow-dress-denim-jacket-1

  

You Pick Wednesday: Spring Party Dresses Under $100

Shopping · You Pick Wednesday

It’s getting to be that time of year when invitations to spring weddings, graduation parties and baby showers appear in our inboxes. Plus, we’re all so tired of cold and nasty weather that any excuse to break out a fun spring dress is a welcome one.

A reader recently asked me for suggestions of what to wear to her daughter’s graduation party at a nice restaurant. I told her that she’s in luck because the latest trend of fit-and-flare dresses are perfect for the occasion AND perfect for just about every body shape.

Spring party dress, spring dress sandals

Dress 1 | Dress 2 | Dress 3 | Dress 4 | Dress 5 | Dress 6 | Dress 7 | Dress 8

Shoes 1 | Shoes 2 | Shoes 3

Not a fan of showing off your arms? Throw on a shawl or a colorful cardigan and you’re good to go! Let the dress stand out by pairing it with some fun heels and keeping the jewelry simple.

Feel like you need to define your waist? Try a belt! Some of these dresses come with a belt but feel free to add one to others if your waist is the narrowest part of you and you want to show it off.

But no matter what you wear, don’t forget to have fun at those spring parties!

  

Cardigans and Librarians

Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Chicago style blogger, Chicago botanic garden, little black dres with a cardigan

purple_cardigan_black_dress_3

Dress – The Limited (similar) | Cardigan – The Limited (similar) | Necklace – Groopdealz (similar) | Shoes – Bandolino (same)

Today I’m doing a presentation on what types of jobs you can get with a Masters in Library Science so I figure it’s only appropriate that I wear a cardigan. I mean, what else do you associate with librarians other than cardigans?? Just kidding. I hope you associate things like books and education. Not just cardigans!

Although, in the interest of full disclosure, I do not consider myself a librarian (I’m a records manager) and I actually took these pictures yesterday at the Chicago Botanic Garden.

Actually, I love the Chicago Botanic Garden so much I think I need to do an entire photo shoot there. It’s so beautiful no matter what time of year you visit. In fact, I have taken photos there once before, when I showed you this casual outfit my mother-in-law brought me from Italy!

The only downside is that this time I was there sans photographer; so welcome back to the land of the point-and-shoot camera. And the land of me wearing another comfy dress outfit. Apologies for both.

Black dress with a purple cardigan at the Chicago Botanic Garden

  

Red and Comfortable

Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

Red blazer with black and white dress, Chicago Style Blogger

red_blazer_houndstooth_dress_3

Blazer – The Limited (similar) | Dress – Target via Goodwill (similar) | Belt – Target (same) | Shoes – Bandolino (same) | Necklace – The Limited (same)

Happy Monday, everyone! I hope you had a great weekend. Mine was packed full including:

  • Leading my first group run with the Chicago Area Runners Association
  • Going to my nephew’s little league game and my niece’s kiddie soccer game
  • Drinking way too many beers while hanging out with my family
  • Going to brunch with my Ragnar Chicago team (that’s a 200 mile running relay, by the way)
  • Visiting the Maxwell Street Market in Chicago for tacos and tamarind Italian ice (and to marvel at what is basically a flea market)
  • Passing out for a nap.

And because I’m going to be super busy today attending a conference I had to take these pictures last night. But since I fell asleep and then it started raining we had to sneak them in using the flood lights on the roof.

I think, though, that the lighting makes the red really pop. Of course, pairing red with black and white always makes red pop. I needed something comfortable to wear today and this dress is probably the most forgiving item I own. The last time I wore it I also paired it with a belt but wore a cardigan instead of a blazer. Not sure why I haven’t featured this dress on the blog since then! I’m thinking it needs to become a summer staple.

Chicago style blogger, how to wear a red blazer

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

  

Blues, Tans and Purples

Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

White tweed jacket with blue dress and bubble necklace, Chicago style blogger white, blue and bubble necklace

Jacket – Forever 21 (similar) | Dress – BCBG Outlet (similar) | Necklace – JF&A show (similar) | Tights – Express (same) | Shoes – Bandolino (similar)

Have you voted for your favorite outfit of April yet? I’m surprised by the results so far! Will your vote change that?

Welcome to Monday! Did everyone have a good weekend? Remember last weekend when I ran that half marathon? Well this weekend I didn’t run one but I did work at one. Yes, I worked on Friday and Saturday at the Wisconsin Marathon and Half Marathon handing out race packets, answering questions, doing some crowd control at the finish line, and cleaning up after the race.

Which basically means that Sunday was spent recovering! And outfit planning, of course. Today’s outfit is my interpretation of the Style Imitating Art painting for this week chosen by Jen of Librarian for Life & Style:

Lawren Harris, Tamarack Swamp, Algoma, c. 1920, oil on canvas

Lawren Harris, Tamarack Swamp, Algoma, c. 1920, oil on canvas

I decided to pull out the blues and the tans in the painting and then accent it with my purple-ish bubble necklace. Now, some people out there might be saying “Bubble necklaces are SO 2012.” And I say, so what? Seriously, I’ve only ever seen one being worn “in the wild” (aka not on a blog) and whenever I wear it I get compliments. Which to me says that the general public is not over them yet and still find them unique. Which means I’m still going to wear mine.

The joys of not being a total slave to trends is that you don’t have to revamp your entire wardrobe every year, right? And you can keep remixing your items! Like I did with this blue dress.

Also, if you want to see how others used this painting to create an outfit, be sure to visit Librarian for Life and Style!

White jacket with blue dress

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

  

Trophy Attire

Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

black_blazer_sheath_dress_1 black_blazer_sheath_dress_2

Blazer – The Limited (same) | Dress – The Limited (similar) | Necklace – clothing swap (similar) | Shoes – Bandolino (same) | Tights – Express (same)

Today I got to do one of the best things I’ve done all year: I awarded a trophy to a department that had done some amazing things and ended up going almost completely paperless. You should have seen the excitement in their faces when I handed them their giant trophy at our annual appreciation breakfast. Made my entire day.

One of the things I love about my job is training people to take control of their environments and make their lives easier. Unfortunately this is just a small piece of my job. I’d love to do it full time! Helping people is a passion of mine.

Because I don’t get to do that full time is one of the reasons I have this blog. Am I the best dresser on the planet? Nope. Do I expect you will run out and copy every single outfit I wear? Nope. But when people tell me that my blog has inspired them to look at their closet in a new way it gives me the same feeling I got when I saw how thrilled that department’s staff was to have that trophy.

So, thanks to those of you who give me those trophies. It makes what I do here more worthwhile.

  

Subtle Pattern Mixing

Office Appropriate Outfits - Spring

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

purple_cardigan_black_dress_2

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

  

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?

IMG_3057 IMG_3056

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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