Browse Tag: blazer

Dress for the Job You Want!

I had written a post about this same topic three years ago but I felt it was time to revisit it. Here is a passage from the first post:

I can’t imagine you haven’t heard this English idiom. Essentially what it means is you should not prejudge the worth or value of something by its outward appearance alone, however, when the reputation of the business is lowered due to the “appearance” of its employees – the line needs to be drawn. When I interview a potential candidate for this relatively simple sales associate position, my first reaction is based on punctuality. My second thought is based on appearance. My third thought is based on personality (due to the nature of our small shop, personality is key to the team working well together.) My fourth thought is about the ability to do the job well.

Working in fashion retail for all these years and any appointment I have gone to in a business oriented environment, I am always seeing black. Black, black and more black. I understand though as black business suits are easy you just swap out the blouse underneath to change it up. Not to say there is anything wrong with that, but you didn’t come to this blog to hear me talk about basic black business attire! I love colour, even if its only present in my heels and jewellery. I feel a world of difference when I wear it.

I dropped off a resume and portfolio package to a potential employer one morning wearing this very exciting bright coloured combo. Although its not quite what I envisioned in my dark dreary basement wardrobe room that morning, I thought the coral blazer matched the dress perfectly, but as it turns out in day light its orange in the dress, not coral. Oh well the fun citrus colours do play well off each other!

My philosophy has always been to make a statement when dropping off a resume or interviewing. I first thought of this years ago when I was at an interview for a local government office position with dark brown hair, sporting hot pink underneath. I styled my hair up so that it was less noticeable and died it solid brown after I was hired for my first day. When the CEO walked into the office that day her first reaction was “Oh! Where did the pink go? It was so cool!” Over the next month different employees would walk in and say “you’re the girl with the pink hair, but where’s the pink?” Who knew it would make such a statement!

Now not only is bold bright colours and patterns part of my every day wardrobe, I make a point of wearing a striking bright dress with matching jewellery and a blazer for any professional meetings or events. Making a statement is everything! You can get lost in the crowd of black business suits so make sure you are wearing something “wow”!


Fun Business Looks

I’m not traditional, by any stretch of imagination. Every day I push the boundaries of fashion in my little world exploring new fabrics, layering and accessorizing. I don’t see professional as being limited to black and grey as most people come to believe. They instantly grab the black suit, white collared shirt, pumps and tiny stud earrings. Blah.

Years ago I learned that in interviews to be memorable, sometimes your presentation has to be exciting moreso than whats on the paper in front of them. I went to an interview for a small community township office reception job, at the time I had dark brown hair with pink underneath and I styled it in such a way that it looked more professional (along with the outfit of course!) and not as loud. When I was hired and arrived for my first day of work I had re-dyed my hair to be more professional and the CEO walked in and said “where did the pink go?!”

Little did I know the staff in the meeting remembered me and referred to me as the girl with pink hair… It stood out rather than “the brunette in the black suit” … hmm not so memorable. From then on I was dressing professional but in my thrifty fun way and they loved it. That office was excited to see what I wore each day. Every day is new and exciting so its more fun to dress as such!


I’ve been asked a few times about a business look for an interview or new job and to be honest my style isn’t that much different when I’m working in a “professional” environment. I’m still colourful and fun, I just add more on the accessory side and more formal footwear. I’ve put together a few of my favourite business looks I’ve worn to the studio in the last two years so you can see the array of styles that are totally office appropriate – unless your office wants a boring black suit of course!

Because of my curves I like to have bright print skirts paired with a matching blouse (usually sleeveless so my arms fit in the blazer sleeves!) and a basic solid colour blazer. Unless I’m wearing a substantial pashmina, necklaces are a must they just add that finishing touch. I’m told pointed toes are on the way out, haha, not in my world! I think a pointed toe is extremely classy and make any outfit look polished. Fitted black jeggings paired with a pointed toe heel or flat is everything. The easiest way to look office ready without trying too hard.

 

Neon Yellow

13240032_863233000473173_3979429039166249576_nHave I told you how much I love yellow recently? Well let me tell you again! Two years ago I would have grimaced at the thought of adding this colour to my wardrobe, after years of listening to the old wives tales about what colours you can or can’t wear I just assumed no one could wear yellow. Since throwing out the nonsense tales of what I can and cannot wear I decided I would wear whatever I wanted, including this colour. Why the sudden love of neon? Who knows.

Maybe this colour has come back in a way I had never seen before, maybe it’s the right shade that does it for me. I picked up this dress a couple years ago with the plan of wearing it on holiday in Cuba. Unfortunately it did not make it out of the suitcase due to it being a thicker fabric – not suitable for such warm temperatures! But for spring with a little blazer, it’s just the right amount of warmth.

It’s also nice to be able to wear some of my brighter statement jewellery that I snatched up on eBay. The earrings have been redesigned so they are less bulky than the original set.

 

A Great Business Suit

jan15-final To explain professional attire we used to say, “look at what the girls at the bank are wearing” until it became a casual environment. In the last ten years, or as I would call it “the era of yoga pants and sweats” we are seeing less and less interest in our appearance. As a child I didn’t know exactly what job title I wanted, I simply wanted to have a position of status where I needed to wear a suit… to this day I love the look, so classy and professional. Any time I have walked into a bank I expect to see this but I rarely do. Financial advisers and I’m sorry to say it, any male staff are in my opinion the only ones dressed appropriately for the level of status I feel their job title has.

Everything now is worn tight, assuming spandex and stretch makes it more comfortable – forgetting the amount of rolls it creates. Dress pants are no longer a staple but rather yoga pants tucked into boots. These are meant for athletics, at home, running errands on your day off perhaps… but trying to pass them off as work attire? Seriously. There was a young hire at a job I had a few years ago and she was showing up in yoga pants and a blazer with dressy flats. The Lululemon logo was painfully bright for me to not notice. Although it was not my place to say a word about dress code I just continued to wear my dresses and business suits. The day finally came when she wore black “toe” shoes that people where for barefoot running. This is right next door to running shoes folks. I decided it was time to inform the owner of the lack of dress code – but before the words came out of my mouth he beat me to it. Thank goodness.

jan15-final2 A business suit is not hard to find, even in thrift or consignment you can get a beautiful tailored suit with no bells and whistles that matches any blouse you have – for a fraction of the cost new. This beauty fits to a T without much in the way of alteration. I am not really big on long sleeved blazers so I created a small hem to bring the arms in a little shorter to expose my wrists – great for wearing bangles! The pants were painfully long on me so I added a simple hem to the bottom so I wouldn’t be walking all over the bottoms.

Its comfortable and works well with so many blouses I already have in my closet. Easy for any style or look you want to create. Pair it up with heels or flats, jewellery and accessories and voila you have yourself a very professional suit and look the part!

Camo Print

camoprintThis outfit is iconic, as many of you probably don’t know, I abhor camo print. I don’t like hunting, I don’t like camouflage, I dislike it being worn as normal clothing. I was drawn to this blouse however, despite my dislike of the print – in this particular piece it doesn’t bother me at all in fact I was drawn to it because I love green.

Like almost every small blouse I try on lately, this one is no different, I couldn’t get my bicep into the sleeve. Without hesitation I chopped the sleeve off this one too and wouldn’t you know it, instantly fits perfect. Everything is easier in sleeveless!

This blouse was fun to play up with jewellery as I have a few stackable bracelets in turquoise, green and brown tones as well as a matching necklace I made a few years back.

Modern Business Wear

businesswear2My least favourite term is “business casual” as really this could mean a lot of things to different people. For me the typical dress pant, fitted solid colour shirt and blazer makes for one heck of a boring outfit. So I’d like to show you my twist on the business look!

My philosophy is, if you have the basics – all you need is a variety of beautiful blouses! A simple long sleeve black blazer that fits to a “t” should be a staple in your wardrobe. For me, I go for a skinny leg dark black jegging instead of a wider leg dress pant based on my shape. It creates a more flattering look for my wide hips and bum if I go narrow toward my ankle. Continue Reading

Full Colour or Bust!

brightfloralskirt Ah yes, a new favourite! I’m sure I say this in every post, but its okay to have a ton of favourite newly-created looks!

Much like most of my other outfits, these pieces had to be altered in order to suit my body shape. This New York & Co floral skirt really didn’t fit at all when I tried it on, but every now and then there are pieces that you just have to have no matter how much work they will involve in the end. I took it in two inches to make it a high waisted style and brought up the hem about the same amount so it came closer to the knee. Anything past the knee on my height makes me look frumpy.

Continue Reading

Purple? Yes please!

purpleblazer Much like my beloved outfit from a few weeks ago sporting a boyfriend blazer for the first time, this purple one had me instantly. This outfit really fell into place randomly the day the blazer arrived as I do not actually have any purple in my wardrobe. This top (which I thought was very cool) did not sell at the store so I thought hmm, I wonder if that would work. I took it home, tried it out and thought it just needed one final piece.

I have created a new line of wearable art and conveniently one of them was a blend of purples! A few adjustments for length and voila a very stylish setup!

The Wow! Business Look

franklymandressWho says business professional has to be boring black suits?! Check out this fabulous look I put together for a local business expo one of my employers took part in! I have owned this dress for a few years, made some alterations to it back in the day (took up the hem so it sits above the knee) but never found an opportunity to wear it.

I wanted to look professional but sophisticated and stylish at the same time. I just hate the solid black dress and blazer that most women resort to for these events! What’s wrong with a splash of colour? I do not recall if this is a Joseph Ribkoff or Frank Lyman, regardless its stunning and feels like a tshirt when it’s on.

Paired with a 3/4 sleeve blazer and point toe pumps, and vibrant aqua jewellery of course!
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The Boyfriend Blazer

forever21boyfriendblazer Let me tell you about this blazer.

This unique boyfriend blazer by Forever 21 sat in our racks for two months, untouched, lonesome and without cause. Every now and then I am puzzled when things I think are exceptionally fashionable are not touched on these racks to the point where I try them on just to see if there is something wrong with it. Maybe its not sewn correctly, perhaps the fit is off somehow.

I didn’t touch this blazer originally because of my skin tone, hearing endlessly by women in the store saying “its not my colour” or “it won’t look good with my skin”… things I’ve always believed are total malarky. I put it on and right away a few of my employees stopped and ushered a soft “Wow!” as I looked at it in the mirror. Yes wow indeed. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with it, its a beautiful blush colour, very soft fabric and the cut is perfect for my shape.

Maybe the problem all along was that I was the Cinderella, and didn’t realize it.

I think the main reason that people don’t touch boyfriend blazers is they are unsure how to wear them. Yes they are an oversized look, you see the teenagers wearing oversized bulky sweaters and most of the time – yeah they do look frumpy. But these are tailored jackets, they are not too big or “oversized” but rather styled to look less formal than your traditional double breasted blazer.

There are many ways to wear them without ending up in frumpy-town, I’ve listed some great articles below. For me I styled it in such a way that I would deem “trendy”. Ripped boyfriend jeans a la Gap; nude pumps by Nine West; a simple white tshirt and a long rose quartz necklace made by yours truly.

I was very impressed with how this look turned out its definitely one of my favourites. I was even asked by Gap Yorkdale on Instagram if they could share!

Here are a few great posts on how to style this awesome blazer:
The Fashion Tag
Lucky Shops

 

Neutrals for Fall

ericalexandreskirt As you are well aware, I’m not often one for neutrals or dark palettes. When this skirt caught my eye I think it was more of the fabric than colour, the soft texture and the feel of it on my body. In the fall and winter seasons I do add a blend of neutral outfits into my wardrobe as some days you just don’t feel like being too bold but rather more focused on comfort and warmth.

This particular day wasn’t overly warm in late September so I thought I would embrace the season everyone was pushing on me and styled up this Eric Alexandre skirt. To give it some punch I paired it with my stone 3/4 sleeve blazer, Nine West pumps and my own one of a kind jewellery.

Ladies have often commented on this particular set and no, I will never sell it. It was one of the first complicated-time-consuming-ready to rip your hair out – pieces I ever made. Each brushed coin is hand wrapped to dangle from the chain. It has all three pieces to match, bracelet, earrings and necklace. It truly is unique and is the perfect colouring for this outfit.

Fabulous New Bag

neonpurse I tried out a new trend yesterday and I would like to proudly say I rocked it! Although the outfit itself is a combination I’ve never tried before, the new neon bag I snatched up at Value Village really seals the deal on this one! I’ve officially decided this is my favourite colour of the month!

It really makes this whole monochromatic look pop. I saw on Instagram recently women sporting shorts with their blazers – so I thought it was worth a try. The main reason for wearing it was quite simply, the AC in the store is way too cold for me! I’ve said it a hundred times but blazers are awesome, especially this simply tailored RW&Co 3/4 sleeve one. I also have it in a dark sage green!

blackwhitebracelets I also wanted to comment on my jewellery for this outfit. It worked so perfectly with the outfit, a fun blend of sparkle and attitude! As part of my adventure in eBay shopping, these two pieces were among my favourites from the latest shipment.