Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The View

I could get used to this view!

I have something in the works, but I can't talk about it yet or I'll jinks it. It's been a crazy couple of days, but I should have an outfit post for you soon.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Sunday Comic

Photo from The Blogess Blog

The Blogess is one of my favorite reads and now I have a couple of friends reading too.  Since it's the weekend and I have no chic workwear for the weekend, here is your Sunday comic.

I found her a few months ago when I read this article about picking your battles in marriage.  I felt like I was married to her husband's long lost twin! But it turned out that all my friends could relate.

Here she's written this and bananas will never be the same...I am heading to Target shortly.  I sure hope no one shops where I shop...

Happy Sunday!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Gap Flash Sale Today!

I love shopping at the Gap for sweaters and while I did have one embarrassing situation where I bought what I thought was the most comfortable "boyfriend sweater" and it turned out to be an actual men's sweater...I forgave myself and went back for more.  In addition, now that the temperatures are cooling in Texas (hurray for fall!), I think it's a great time to stock up on sweaters that can be worn at the office and on the weekend.

Today, Gap is offering a 40% discount on any single sale item both online and at the stores between 2 and 8 PM.  Just use code GAPFLASH at checkout.  I will probably buy one of the sweaters below (or both since one will be 40% off!)  Don't forget to use your Ebates to get cash back on your purchase and save even more!

What will you buy?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Family Dinner Out

I still haven't come up with a great name for my husband (all the fabulous bloggers I read have the best names for their significant others, I am a tad ashamed that I am not so creative) and I know I should get on that, but I haven't!
Top:  Lapis
Jeans: Vince via HauteLook
Shoes: Manolo Blahnik Sedaraby
Purse: Tory Burch Reva
Earrings: Old Beaded Earrings
Bracelet: Monet
We sometimes struggle with our work/home life balance and competing home, work, charity and kid's school schedules.  Not this week! The kids have been very well behaved, hubby hasn't been traveling for work and miraculously there are no boy scout or band events!  We decided to take the kids out for dinner to try a new neighborhood restaurant.

The restaurant won't be mentioned because we aren't going back.  The service was okay, the food mediocre and the ambience left a lot to be desired.  But, at least my hubby thought I looked great!  I recruited a 10 year old to take these photos. I should be ashamed, but I am not...

It's not easy to look casual AND put together! Accessorizing is definitely a talent that I need to cultivate because I still either play it way safe or else I am way out there!  For a casual dinner, I wanted to wear jeans and I don't really like the faded denim trend.  I tend to stick to dark denim in general because I really like how it looks and I love these Vince jeans.  The tiered top works to disguise some of my not so cute tummy troubles and I always get compliments when I wear it.  The gold necklace is a DIY project that I learned from one of my favorite sites, ... Love, Maegan. She has a whole DIY tutorial section and my favorite is that I am not crafty, but these are all super easy and even I can make them!

Lastly, I wanted to punch up the outfit a little so I added a nice handbag and shoes.  This Tory Burch clutch has turned into one of my favorite bags because it seems to go with so much! And the Manolo Blahnik Sedaraby shoes are so comfy, I couldn't resist.  Plus, I think the black suede kept the look from overdosing on gold.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Thank You Notes

Cards: Charming Designs

Handwritten notes are never going to go out of style.  No matter how advanced our technology, everyone loves getting mail that is not bills or junk.  I always remember how great it feels to open an envelope and actually see someone's hand written note.  It's like getting to know a part of that person that is incredibly personal.  Does the person have neat, curly writing or does it resemble chicken scratch? Did they choose a flowery card with a pre-printed sentiment or a sleek blank card that they had to compose on their own?

I try to write my Thank You notes the same day as the interview so that I can remember to reference something that was said during the conversation and to ensure that I get them mailed in a timely fashion. I love these cards by Charming Designs.  They are a tad girly, but so am I and they have different charms on each card.  The hardest part for me is writing the entire note without messing it up and I've been known to write 2 or 3 drafts before getting it right.  It's important that there be no mistakes on the card because most companies keep these on file with your application and resume!  Another pet peeve of mine is when I start in print type and end in cursive.  If I sent it out that way, I fear the recipient would wonder if I suffered from multiple personalities!  So that situation requires that I start over.

Lastly, I send thank you cards to everyone that interviewed me and anyone who went out of their way to help me.  For example, at this particular company I interviewed with 2 individuals and the receptionist got me a glass of water and set up my testing.  I sent both interviewers and the receptionist a Thank You card.  

Monday, September 19, 2011

Second Interview

Today, I have my second interview with the same academic institution that I interviewed with last week.
Button Down Shirt:  Express
Slacks: The Limited
Belt: Taken from a dress in my closet
Shoes: Prada
Necklace: Monet
I chose this outfit because it is still very conservative, but won't give me a heatstroke in the unforgiving Texas heat.  Again, I limited my accessories to my wedding ring and a classic silver necklace. I found this necklace on eBay in a lot of multiple pieces.  While some of the gold items have begun to tarnish this Monet necklace has remained in pristine condition.  It's worth the cost of the whole lot and then some! 

The button down is from Express and while it is fitted, the fabric still moves with me when I need it to. Plus, French cuffs are my favorite.  The slacks are by The Limited and identical to the brown ones I wore for the first interview last week.

Finally, I try not to take my purse into interviews for several reasons: I can never figure out where to put it; I don't like to turn off my phone, but I don't want it to ring in the middle of an interview; I don't want it to be distraction.  If I carry my purse in, I try to place it on the chair next to where I am sitting, but if there is no additional chair, I leave it on the floor because I think it's too distracting on the table.  I really dislike putting my handbag on the floor and honestly prefer to leave in in the trunk of my car! So I only carry a notepad (in a pretty leather case) and a pen.

These Prada pumps work because when I am wearing them, you can't actually see that they are designer unless you get very close to my feet and read the engraving on my shoe, but they are a great and comfy pair of shoes to walk around strange buildings in.

Wish me luck!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Charity Happy Hour

We had a happy hour for a local charity my hubby and I support recently and I pulled out this number.
Dress: Robbi & Nikki
Shoes: Christian Louboutin Yobatrice (several seasons ago)
Purse: Chloe Paddington (also several seasons ago)
Earrings: Taos Mercantile Company
Necklace: Priviledged (via Gilt Groupe)
I need to think of a fabulous name for my husband because he probably doesn’t want to be associated with any blog of mine. He belongs to a charity organization here in Dallas and they have fundraisers and happy hours on a regular basis. I chose this outfit to wear to the last happy hour. I would not wear this dress to work because it is a bit more risqué (see cleavage!) but the fabric is perfect for the scorching Texas temperatures if you are sitting on a patio having a drink with friends. I love the bright color.
I paired the bold red dress with turquoise and tan colors to ground the look a bit. I’d been looking for a turquoise necklace for while and I love this one by Priviledge because the gold hasn’t tarnished yet as it did on my other gold necklaces! The earrings were bought while I was taking a class in New Mexico this summer. 

The camel leather lining of the linen shoes compliment the leather of the handbag. I think this is a great way to make the red feel a little more earthy. This is one of my favorite looks from this summer. It feels simple and yet my husband seems to love it.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Casual Friday

I wore this outfit at my last place of employment during casual Friday. They had a casual dress code all the time, but I've always been opposed to wearing jeans and tennis shoes at work. I don't mind wearing jeans or flats or jeans and flats, but I think we should at least make an effort to look put together. 
Top: Grace (last season)
Skirt: Gap Premium Denim (old)
Shoes: Manolo Blahnik
Purse: Calvin Klein (very old, maybe even vintage!)
Necklace: Purchased in India

I don't mind wearing jeans or flats or jeans and flats, but I think we should at least make an effort to look put together. There are some professions (nursing, construction, aerobics instruction, etc.) where I think tennis shoes are appropriate footwear, but the rest of the time I think you can always find a cute pair of ballet flats or oxfords to give it that polished look.

This is one of my favorite necklaces. I bought it when my husband and I were in India last year and I ended up buying several of them in different colors. My hubby and I love to travel and I like picking up trinkets to remember our adventures.

The purse is one of my first designer purchases back in 1999 or 2000. I love the natural color and the fact that after a decade of abuse, the leather is still supple and beautiful. The shoes are not so old, I bought them last year and again, I really love the color and the workmanship. Manolo Blahnik is definitely one of my favorite designers. Even the red sole of Christian Louboutins (and I love those, too!) can't beat the understated elegance of these slingback sandals.
Have a Happy Friday tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

First Interview

I recently had a first interview with an in-house recruiter for a very well-respected academic institution in town. As I was only going to meet with the recruiter and take some tests, I wanted to wear something as non-descript as possible, while still looking pulled together.
Top: Adrienne Vittadini (last season via Ideeli)
Slacks: The Limited (old)
Shoes: Nine West (old)
Earrings: Costume Pearl studs from my grandmother
Why non-descript? Because you want the interviewer to remember your skills and your conversation. I have some designer clothes, shoes and bags; but I don't want to call ANY attention to any of that during my first impression. Especially in an academic environment, you want to come across as smart and polished, but not flashy or ostentatious.
The costume pearl studs are a pair that my grandmother gave me a few years before she passed. I am convinced that they bring me luck. They are the only piece of jewelry I wear other than my wedding ring. I slip my diamond engagement ring off right before I leave my house and put it back on after the interview.

Other than a knit top and slacks, I wear a sensible pair of black shoes. In this case, I wore a very old pair of Nine West Mary Janes with a 2 inch stacked heel.

Did it work? YES! I was asked to come back for a second interview a few days later!