Could you help me find some blazers to wear as separates this summer? I work in a courthouse (i.e. very conservative) and wear suits about half the week, but need to improve my blazer rotation for the other days. My suit blazers look like they’re intended to be part of a suit, so they don’t really work as separates, and are uniformly dark – so I’d like something with a little more personality. I’d prefer to spend under $100, but can go up if it’ll be a year-round staple.
While wearing your suit jackets with other separates is a good option, you don’t want to wear out their blazers before their time. Here are a few pieces that you can wear with other separates.
I love an inverted notch blazer. It has a such a great, modern look to it. It pairs perfectly with jeans, skinny trousers or wide-leg trousers. This Trouve blazer is a great choice. I also like this white Anthro blazer and this Club Monaco Amalia blazer.
A collarless ivory jacket is a year-round staple for me. I prefer ivory tweed, but this jacket is a good choice for the price. You can wear it with every neutral imaginable from camel to navy to charcoal.
Bright jackets are a breath of fresh air for neutral pieces. I love this fuchsia number. I also found this bright orange jacket and this mint blazer. Obviously, these colors aren’t for court or for big meetings, but they can be a fun way to bring personality to your outfit on days when you don’t have to wear basics.
Lastly, I wear tweed in every season. This navy jacket from Joe Fresh would look great over a white sleeveless sheath or a pale pink dress. In the winter, I would wear it with dark navy separates and charcoal ones–maybe even black if you feel like making a bold statement.
Can you help me find a pair of open toe flats for work? It’s summer and I want a black pair and a nude pair but I can’t find them in my price range. I want to spend $125 or less on each pair. Please help, it’s too hot to wear real shoes.
Thank you so much! JC
These Nine West Aloha flats are a good place to start. They come in black and gold. This black suede pair from Carlos Santana has a perforated front; they’re kind of fun. I also like these peep-toe flats from H&M that have a knotted front.
I was recently hired to work as a Pre-K and kindergarten teacher next year. Last year I held a position where the dress code was very casual. I visited my new school and noticed nobody wore jeans, but it still seemed a step below business casual. Can you suggest any brands or pieces that fall in this in-between category? I am on a teacher’s budget.
Thank you! I love reading your blog! Kara
Now, where to shop. Since jeans seem to be off the table, try chinos and skinny trousers. I like Ann Taylor and Gap for these. Banana Republic also has some good options for dress and casual pants. I would also try Halogen for skirts and dresses. H&M is my current go-to store for inexpensive blouses like this long sleeve white top, and Zara has great pieces like this frilly sleeve blouse.
Limited is also a good store for mid-price items that sway from casual to professional. Piperlime is also a great place to look, I would suggest their Tinley Road brand.