How to Wear Spanx Perfect Black Skinny Pants to Work

How to Wear Spanx Perfect Black Skinny Pants to Work

The Spanx “Perfect” Black Skinny Pants are among the most popular items we featured during the Nordstrom Sale. With all the comfort of a legging, these better basics can take you anywhere.

Good thing because we’re not only transitioning from the summer to the fall, but also from staying home to getting back out into the world. So whether you are working from home or are in the office, you will get a ton of use out of these pants.

How to wear the Spanx “Perfect” Black Skinny Pants

Spanx The Perfect Black Pant

 

Spanx The Perfect Black Pant, $128 

First, let’s talking about the pants, available in an XS – 3X

The comfort is next level. As someone who goes from sitting on the floor with my toddler, to working at my desk, to dropping my big girls off at sports practices, these pants let you move while looking polished. 

And now that we are inching closer to sweater weather – their flat front and pull on style are ideal. 

Look One: Work from Home 

 

How to Wear Spanx Perfect Black Skinny Pants to Work

 

Sweater, $69, Scarf, $51, Mules, $70, Yeti Mug, $29 

To work from home on a chilly day, add a cozy sweater. Chelsea28, available at Nordstrom, makes lovely, affordable knits. This particular sweater is supposed to be oversized. The shoulder is relaxed (or “dropped”) and the sleeves are extra long, so you can scrunch them up or pull them over your hands.

I happen to love a turtleneck. So here, I would pull my hair up in a messy ponytail and tie it with a scarf, like this one on sale at Wolf & Badger.

Then, instead of a real shoe, this hybrid of a slipper and mule by Ugg. I wear my Uggs all the time. They keep your feet toasty warm, but you can walk around in them to grab the mail or drive to the car line for school pick up. And of course, a mug to keep the never ending stream of coffee warm

Look Two: Back in the Office

How to Wear Spanx Perfect Black Skinny Pants to Work

Blazer, $109, Shell, $39, Earrings, $91, Bag, $328, Shoes, $69 

I’ve been hearing from readers who are back in the office and looking to find balance in dressing for a more relaxed environment, but still wanting to look professional.

Grab these pants, and add a few simple workwear basics, starting with this plaid blazer by Liverpool (available at Bloomingdale’s). It’s a beautiful piece that adds some casual structure to an outfit. It’s available in sizes up to XXL, with a little bit of stretch that will match the pants’ comfort.

Next, you need a layer, which is often hard to find. This one, by Halogen, is under $40. Scoop it up in ivory (above) and black if you need to refresh your core work wardrobe. There are also six other prints to choose from, including a classic leopard print you can layer under a black blazer or cardigan. Available in petite and missy. 

Then, a comfortable but professional shoe. I found these suede slingbacks with a block heel on sale for under $70. For jewelry, you have so many options. You could add a long necklace to create a lovely layered look under the jacket’s neckline or a bold earring, like these black onyx drops that mix classic and modern design.

Finally, a splurge-worthy quilted bag by Michael Kors to show how adding textural elements can elevate an outfit. You can see, by matching your hardware and metal tones, you can create a cohesive look easily.

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Our Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

 

 

Buy Now, Wear Now and Later: J. Crew Polka Dot Top

Well Dressed - How to wear a polka dot top two ways

Buy Now, Wear Now and Later posts are some of my favorites to create.

The idea behind this series is to help you maximize your wardrobe, in between seasons.

Today, I’m working with this lovely polka dot peplum top, available in sizes 00 – 16 for under $80. (Currently 25% off with code EPIC)

As we move into fall, I’m going to start talking more about specific body types and how pieces I’m featuring can work to hence your shape. So going forward, on posts like this one, I’ll highlight how and why it will work for certain body types. 

But before I dive into it below, please remember these are just guidelines. Nothing in fashion is set in stone.

Key Piece: J.Crew Polka Dot Peplum Top 

How to wear a polka dot top two ways

Top, $79.50 

Take 25% off with code EPIC

A peplum top looks best on lean or straight up and down, sometimes called “boy” shape body types because it adds curves and dimension. 

It will add the same benefit for some rectangles

If you are an inverted triangle it will bring balance to your shoulders. 

For an hourglass, it will highlight your curves, so go for it!

Avoid a peplum if you are a traditional triangle, or an apple shape

How to Wear in the Summer

How to wear a polka dot top in the summer

Summer:  Top, $79.50  |  Jeans, $68  |  Earrings, $33  |  Slides, $77  |  Bag, $38

Shop Summer Look

How gorgeous is this look, made with items you may already have and under $100 if you want to pick  up something new. 

What’s important here are the jeans. If you wear a peplum top you MUST wear a slim bottom, either straight or skinny, depending on what looks best on you. 

I’m using these Wit & Wisdom jeans because I know many of you already have them. It’s nice that they hit right at the ankles, this creates an airiness to the outfit. For a other white jean options in all sizes check out our series Basics Building: The Best White Jeans.

Now, the accessories. There is a lot going on in the top, so while we want to keep the rest fairly simply, it’s nice to also draw attention to your face. These these affordable earrings are stunning. They add texture, movement and are just incredibly chic. 

Then, this stunning bag, that was originally $177 is now only $48.  WHAT? Yes. Total year end steal. 

Finally, since this is for the warm weather,  these slides are perfection. They are part of the Nordstrom sale and 40% off. Scoop them up now, wear for the next month or so and have them at the ready next spring. 

How to Wear in the Fall

how to wear a polka dot top in the fall

 

Fall: Top, $79.50  |  Jeans, $68   Cardigan, $40  |  Boots, $99  |  Bag, $60  |  Earrings, $65 

Shop Fall Look

Now let’s take this pretty piece into the fall. I have no idea where we’re going, but let’s pretend we’re finally go out and about with friends. Like brunch! Remember brunch?

I use another Wit & Wisdom jean, this time in black, but wear your favorite. 

As a much needed layer I added this long cardigan by Halogen , also part of the Nordstrom sale, fully stocked and under $40 and comes in regular and petite. I went with a tan instead of an ivory because it’s not as sever of a contrast. The tan makes it feel monochromatic and seasonally appropriate. 

For shoes, swap out your sandals for a bootie, like this pair by Vince Camuto on sale for under $100 at DSW. They get rave reviews and will become an instant go-to in your fall wardrobe. 

Then, for a little more movement a pair of hoops (gold tone will work best with the colors in this outfit). 

Finally, another cognac bag option. You don’t need both, either work in each outfit. This one by Sole Society is made of vegan leather for $60.

 

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Our Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

 

 

A Sweet Floral Top for Jeans

A Sweet Floral Top for Jeans

One of my goals as we move through our seasonal content is to offer recommendations you can build on. A pair of jeans you purchased in January, work with boots you grabbed in February. So it only makes sense that a blouse in March creates a whole new outfit. 

That’s what we have today. A simple outfit created with wardrobe staples featured here on the blog, freshened up with this pretty floral top

But first, a quick note about sponsored content.

One of the reasons I don’t take sponsored content is so I can share my honest opinions. For example, I find physically shopping in Nordstrom more and more difficult, and I say this as someone who basically lived in the store when I was a stylist.

Their sales floor is scattered, their departments make no sense, their inventory mix lacks direction and their prices continue to rise.

Who, exactly, are they trying to target these days? 

If I took sponsorship dollars, I wouldn’t be able to say that. But I think it’s important for you to hear it from me in case you find yourself roaming the store wondering if you’re the crazy one. 

You’re not. 

But, if I were holden to sponsored dollars all I can do is praise my retail partners. 

That’s not to say Nordstrom doesn’t have great pieces. They do, but these days they are hidden in their oddly expensive, youth focused merchandise. 

Take this blouse by their private label brand Caslon

It’s the kind of reasonably priced ($59), nice quality, simple to wear piece I expect to easily find there.

It’s available in missy (up to a size XXL which equals an 18) and petite – so my petite ladies (!), be sure to grab this if you need some cute tops to pair with jeans. And plus sizes here. 

Pretty Floral Top for Jeans

A Sweet Floral Top for Jeans

Top, $59  (Plus, here)  |  Booties, $60  |  Jeans, $129 (marked down to $77 with code BLUES)

 

I picked it up in what they are calling Navy Pink/Yellow Cayce Floral print. It feels like spring with warm tones that look great with jeans.

It’s also available in a few other colors and patterns including a navy gamine floral (featured below), a pretty pale pink floral print, and solid ivory, navy and a gorgeous yellow. 

There is a little ruching at the top of the sleeve for an added bit of detail. It’s not as obvious on the patterned pieces, but you can see it clearly in the solid options. It also has a flattering split-top neckline. 

Sizing runs true. I’m wearing a medium (for context I’m 5’10 and usually wear an 8 or medium). 

Keeping with the idea that many of our recommendations are meant to build on past purchases (because that’s how you shop in the real world) this pieces is perfect for these Joe’s Jeans (on sale at Off 5th for about $77 with code BLUES)  and the most popular boots I’ve ever featured, the Sam Edelman bootie in Whiskey leather also on sale for $60. 

How to Wear

 

A Sweet Floral Top for JeansTop, $59  |  Booties, $60  |  Jeans, $129  |  Earrings, $50  |  Bracelet, $60 

Here’s a break down of the outfit, with the top featured in Navy Gamine Floral. I included some new pieces for Gorjana, my favorite line of reasonably priced jewelry.

I love these $50 earrings with tiny stud details. Their shape is fun for a casual jeans look. And this bracelet for $60 can be layered in with pieces you already own or stand by itself.


Our Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.


Wear it Two Ways: Banana Republic Zebra Print Blouse

Zebra Print Blouse Two Ways for Work

Today’s post is FULL of easy to wear pieces for work. 

We’re using this updated blouse from Banana Republic, in a fresh zebra print as the anchor of our two way post.  It’s also available in solid black, a crisp white, olive green, chartreuse, and a leopard print (marked down to under $60). 

Why I love Banana Republic

One of the many challenges I have writing this blog is sourcing quality merchandise, with a size-inclusive scale, that is easily accessible to the majority of our readership.

BR checks all of those boxes, offering missy, petite, and tall sizes, and plus within those categories.

Their selection is well curated, with appropriate options for work, weekends, and everything in between. If only more retailers were like them.

Zebra Blouse Two Ways 

Zebra Print Blouse Two Ways for Work

Today’s blouse is the kind of piece that seamlessly works in your wardrobe. Make it a go-to for days when you wake up and all you have the strength to do is throw on your favorite black pants. Add a simple shoe and you’re dressed in minutes. 

But, if you want to zhush it up a bit, below are two other ways. 

Outfit One: After Work EventZebra Print Blouse Two Ways for Work

Outfit 1: Top, $85  |  Faux Leather Skirt, $47  |  Shoe, $118  |  Bracelet, $25  |  Clutch, $30 

An outfit composed of basics, made with elevated fabrics is one of my favorite ways to create a sophisticated look with little effort. 

In December we featured a faux leather skirt I found at Target. If you picked that up, you can use it here. At a similar price, check out this slim faux leather skirt by Halogen at Nordstrom for under $50

It’s cut like a pencil skirt so it works in certain office settings – you’ll know if it will work in yours. 

Because the blouse as an internal tie waist, you can leave this untucked, but still get the effects of a cinched waist. 

I paired it with this dramatic cuff for only $25. Don’t you love when you find something and it looks so much more than it is?!

For shoes, I used our Reader Favorite Banana Republic 12-hour pump in black suede. Pairing suede and faux leather is a great example of mixing lux fabrics together for an elevated look. 

Worried about your legs? You can wear black tights, a pair of hose or go bare legged – it’s entirely up to you. 

To make transitioning from the day to nighttime event easy, tuck a clutch into your work bag. This $30 option at DSW will take you lots of places without a big investment. 

Outfit Two: Casual Friday

 

Zebra Print Blouse Two Ways for WorkOutfit 2: Top, $85  |  Cardigan, $25  |   Jean, $199  |  Shoe, $100  |  Earring, $38  |  Bag, $358 

Perhaps a more realistic outfit idea, this jeans and sweater combo is ideal for casual or creative offices. 

First, this blouse looks best with an inky blue denim. I’m showing it here with the Paige Skinny Jean. They are expensive, but a big reader favorite. You can swap them for whichever brand you like most – just keep it dark. 

It is, however, important that your bottom is slim to your body so the blouse drapes properly. 

Next, assuming your office is freezing, it’s nice to add that third layer, to not only keep you warm but to add some interest. This one, from H&M is fantastic and only $25

Rounding out the look, this cute earrings from Gorjana are under $40 and play off the black and gold accents. A classic black bag from Kate Spade adds structure and practicality.

Finally, I love these backless mules with a pointed toe. The keeping the slim line of your leg moving and feel appropriate for a more casual day in the office. 

________________________________________________________

Our content is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers in any way. 

Recommendations are based on personal experience and my time working with women as a stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram  and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

_________________________________________________________

How to Dress Off a Column of Color

Must Have Boucle Jacket for Under $60

There is a trick to creating an easy work “uniform” that you are likely already using without even knowing. It’s called dressing from a “column of color” and it is the easiest way to quickly pull together a professional look. 

Start by creating a column of color with your better neutral basics. You can use any combination: tank/skirt, top/pant or dress (a solid structured sheath works best) as long as it is one color like black, navy, grey, or winter white. 

This “column” creates one continuous line and acts as a base. Then, simply add a blazer, preferably with some interest or a color that complements the column. The blazer works to add contrast which creates a visual that makes your body look longer and leaner.

Below is work wear look I pulled together combining some pieces I’ve had forever, and two updated items, including this gorgeous jacket that is under $60 and stunning flats I found on sale at J.Crew

How to Dress off a Column of Color 

Must Have Boucle Jacket for Under $60

Jacket, $60  |  Pants, $265  |  Shoes, $99  | Similar Tank, $65  | Similar Bag, $298  |  Hoops, $55 

Rarely am I this impressed with a jacket, but H&M hit it out of the park. I picked this up last week for $59 (regular price). Online the sizes are limited but at the H&M in King of Prussia (PA) there was a rack full of them. 

This beauty fits true to size, I’m wearing an 8. Feels great on, it’s substantial but not too heavy and doesn’t feel bulky even though it’s tweed. And it’s lined.  Lined – for under $60. 

Any time I find something that combines black and navy, I scoop it up, because it’s a piece that will pull so many other items together. Wear it with an all black column, swap out black for navy or throw it over a white tank and dark jeans for a super chic Friday office look.  

Despite the affordable price point, this is a quality and will live in my closet for as long as it fits!

Just take a look at the details …

Must Have Boucle Jacket for Under $60

Related: Easy Red Blazer Outfit for Work 

Extra Special Touches

In the same trip I hit J.Crew for some end of year sales and walked away with more shoes than I needed. My favorites are these slingback flats with bow stud details

Must Have Boucle Jacket for Under $60

These are the kind of shoes that make my heart sing. They are flat, so I don’t feel too tall, and I can walk in them all day. But it’s the studded ribbon bow that instantly sold me.

Tip! Look for extra little details on simple styles of shoes to elevate a basic outfit. Doing so adds visual interest, which creates overall depth. 

Here, I like how the shoes balance out the busy-ness of the jacket by creating proportion. 

Related: 6 Flats to Wear When You Can’t Wear Heels 

I paired my two new purchases with some serious wardrobe workhorses I’ve had forever. Theory makes my favorite suit pants. They are expensive so I try to buy them when they go on sale so I have a few to rotate through. I’ve had the ones above for at least 5 years and wear them all the time. 

Note: Theory’s sizing is all over the place, so you might have to size up more than usual. 

My tank is from Banana Republic. I linked to a similar option here. They have great sales so if you don’t need on right away, keep an eye out for a discount code. 

Finally, I’m wearing the gorjana hoop earrings I featured on Monday. They are light and comfortable – I can’t recommend the enough. 

Related: Affordable Earrings that are Office Appropriate

This outfit is a beautiful example of how to combine higher end pieces (the Theory pants) with something more affordable (the H&M Jacket) to create a look that feels sophisticated and doesn’t scream like you shopped off the mannequin of one store.

Shop all items below:

Must Have Boucle Jacket for Under $60

Jacket, $60  |  Pants, $265  |  Shoes, $99  | Similar Tank, $65  | Similar Bag, $298  |  Hoops, $55 

 

_________________________________________________________

Our content is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers in any way. Recommendations are based on personal experience and my time working with women as a stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram for even more free tips, and join our Private Facebook Group for access advice in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

An Easy $40 Dress

Wear to Work: An Easy $40 Dress

I’m always looking for simple pieces that help you get dressed and out the door quickly. This time of year, especially, days are long and time is a commodity, so keeping outfits easy is essential.

I’m such a fan of a dress for work, or any occasion, really.  It’s one step dressing that always looks more pulled together than the actual effort you put in. When I need to be dressed for a day of client work or have a function, almost every time I opt for a dress.

But for a dress to be ideal, it has to hit a few marks, like, not being a mico-mini, having a proper sleeve, and a neckline that doesn’t plunge to your navel.  

The times when I do come across what feels like the unicorn of dresses, the price tag is often limiting. So when I saw this chic and simple dress at Old Navy of all places, I knew we had to work with it. As I write this, the dress is now on sale for $26, so run, don’t walk.

It’s available in regular, tall, and petite, in XS – XXL here in red, and here in black – I would grab both. Plus Size? They have a similar style here in red and black from a 1X – 3X

An Easy $40 Dress for Work

Wear to Work: An Easy $40 Dress

Dress, $40, $26 Available in Red and Black  |  Boots, $200, $108  |  Tights, $10  |  Necklace, $80  |  Satchel, $340

Let’s talk for a minute about Ponte-Knit, because choosing seasonally appropriate fabric is important. Ponte-knit is soft and double sided, with varying levels of stretch. So you can move comfortably but the dress still maintains it’s shape. It’s a wonderful alternative to wool in the cold months.  

It also travels well, so if you are on the road for work or the upcoming holidays it’s an easy-peasy piece to throw in your suitcase. 

The  shape of this dress is as classic as it gets. The sleeves hit right above your wrists, so if you have a few stackable bracelets at home, go ahead and load up on them. I like that the cut of the dress is shapely without being skin tight.  The placement of the waist seaming is flattering and forgiving, it’s not going to cup your belly, rather, it falls nicely over it. 

To keep you warm, I used a pair of opaque tights, and knee high boots.  The boots are on sale at Off Fifth for a little over $100. They are the perfect clean, suede boot with a manageable heel that you’ll reach for over and again. Sizes are limited. 

Pull the look together and throw on a long necklace.  This will help elongate the neckline and add some movement.  I like this popular Kendra Scott option since it incorporates the black element into the outfit, making it feel purposeful. Lastly, a ladylike satchel by Tory Burch adds some nice structure to the look and plays to the professional vibe. 

 

 

An Unexpected Workwear Combination

How to wear a silk skirt for Fall

Today’s Workwear may be a little out of your comfort zone but I hope you can at least find a sliver of inspiration in it, whether it’s the combination of textures, colors or the
silhouette.

I love it for creatives or small business owners who can have a little more fun with their outfits. It’s an unexpected look that balances feminine and tailored pieces nicely.

Again, I’m using the Item of the Week to show how you can take a piece and weave it throughout your wardrobe. By getting in the habit of thinking about how to wear things two – three different ways, you’ll maximize your options while keeping your budget in check. 

Cable-Knit and Charmeuse

How to wear a silk skirt for FallSweater, $60 | Skirt, $80 | Heels, $180 | Bracelet, $87 | Earrings, $60 | Clutch, $45 

Midi length skirts and dresses are everywhere. They are easier to wear then you might think, the hem just has to hit you at the right spot and you have to wear heels if you are on the shorter side. 

I love the color of this charmeuse skirt by J.Crew on Net-a-Porter. The beauty of it is in how simple it is and the rich, saturated color. (Available in sizes xxs- xl). 

Chunky cable-knit not your style? An alternative is this gorgeous cashmere blend on sale at Bloomingdales , or this equally pretty option from Banana Republic

Matching the skirt to the heels does two things: (1) it creates a cohesive look, and (2) helps make it feel monochromatic. These are by Cole Haan. They are a real workhorse if you need a better professional heel that isn’t exorbitantly priced, they are comfortable and come in a ton of colors. 

Finally, easy-peasy accessories, like this slim clutch (great price if you need something new for the upcoming holidays), square studs (love these) and an airy cuff

Outfit Details 

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