+ Three Ways

Two Ways: Lace Collar Blouse from Day to Night


Blouse: Cloud Bank Blouse ($48)

From Left, Earrings: Crislu Pearl Studs ($90) Ring: Pomegranate Multi-Band Ring ($225) Bag: Follie K Vintage Satchel ($225) Tights: Commando Control Top Tights ($36) Shoes: Loeffler Randall Viola Boot ($595) Blazer: 1035 Blazer ($288) Skirt: Pencil Skirt ($148)

From Right, Earrings: Club Monaco Jolene Earrings ($60) Ring: KJL Button Ring ($77) Palette: Guerlain Calligraphy Palette ($79) Bag: Harlow Envelope Clutch ($78) Shoes: Glitter Block Heels ($198)

Especially during the holiday season, I get a lot of questions about how to transition a work look from day to night.  This post is designed to colve that conundrum.

For the Office.  Adding a feminine blouse to a basic black suit can lighten up the look tremendously.  I find button downs a bit too masculine.  These necklines don’t match exactly (like I usually do), but the lightness of the fabric and the vertical lines in the blouse help lengthen it out.

I like J.Crew suits, and I’ve had good luck with them.  If you can find them on sale, or pick up a gift card for the holidays, this is one investment that you won’t disappoint.  If you need a less-expensive alternative, I know some staffers who wear The Limited suits (skirt and jacket) and like them.

I added tall boots because I find them to be more comfortable than pumps, and they keep my calves warm.  Need a cheaper pair?  This Corso Como pair are under-$175, and this pair from You and Me is $80.

I added feminine pearl jewelry, and a bright red bag for a bit of wow.  Need an alternative ring in a lower price point? I like this model from French Connection for under-$50.

For the hair, I would style it up in a wavy, twisted updo.  For the makeup, I would put on the base coat of a smokey eye.  In other words, the base color and the medium lid color.  I’d also apply some pink blush.

For the Party.  Changing it up for an after hour’s event is really quite simple.  First, lose the jacket. Second, lose the tights (I like bare legs for evening events even in winter).  Lastly, change up the jewelry, the makeup, the shoes and the bag.

The clutch should fit nicely in your day time purse, and I usually keep the makeup and jewelry in the bag so I don’t misplace them.  If you would prefer a box clutch, this velvet one is under-$100 and this chain bag is under-$50.

These glitter pumps from Ann Taylor are crazy good.  I love the balance between the coppery brown and the black.  If you’d like something in a glitter toe-cap for under-$100, this pair should do nicely–but you’ll need to wear pewter or silver jewels.

I’d also switch out the prim pearls with some long dangle earrings and a giant cocktail ring.  I like these earrings because they have a light feel, but enough weight to be festive.

For the makeup, I would add a bold red lip and the final layers to my smokey eye.  This palette from Guerlain gives you almost everything you need, all you need to add is some liquid liner.  If you’re looking for a less pricey palette, it will be tough to find one with both the lip and eye colors.  I would recommend buying an inexpensive red lipstick and a grey palette separately. 



  1. Ellen says:

    Belle, I think you have discussed this before, but what is so terrible about nude stockings when dressed up? I know I'm in the minority here, but I always thought they added a nice but of polish to a dressier look.

    December 11, 2012/Reply
  2. Megan says:

    In my experience, while I know that tailoring is everything, suits from The Limited are more forgiving to fuller-figured women like myself.

    Do not ever use their pants-hemming service, though, even if you have a Limited card and therefore get it for free. Incredibly shoddy workmanship – after a couple of wears, the stitches just fall out.

    December 11, 2012/Reply
  3. Belle says:

    Ellen-If you want to wear them or you're more comfortable wearing them, then do. I just prefer bare legs. It's up to you.

    December 11, 2012/Reply
  4. Valerie says:

    I love the Ann Taylor glitter heels, but sadly they're sold out of every size except 5 1/2. The other glitter pair looks more like mom shoes than party pumps (maybe it's something about the shape of the toe bed?). Other cap toe pairs I found on the DSW website are a bit sexier, like these: https://www.dsw.com/shoe/restricted+just+dance+pump?prodId=266890&productRef=CROSS:

    If anyone finds other glitter options, definitely post them in the comments.

    December 11, 2012/Reply
  5. jWm says:

    I got so excited about those Corso Como boots that you said were $175… went to the Bloomies website to purchase and they are $275. Sadly over my price range ­čÖü

    December 18, 2012/Reply