Fall Style – New Wardrobe Additions with Maximum Versatility

Earlier this week I posted about the Stitch Fix delivery that I received last weekend, which contained some pieces for fall.

I’m in a transition period right now (a lot more about this later), so I haven’t been expanding my wardrobe lately at the usual frenetic pace.

However, Chelsea boots were #1 on my Just Want Now list for Fall ’16.

After *a lot* of browsing, I ordered this Treasure and Bond pair from Nordstrom.

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At $119, these are extremely well-priced for boots. The quality is excellent and they are comfortable from the get-go. I wore them to work last week with tights and a striped dress. I love how Chelsea boots can be dressed up or down, look great with jeans or a tights/skirt combo, and are all-day walkable. Their versatility makes them standouts for travel, especially when packing space is tight and you want to limit shoes.

And of course I found a striped shirt from Splendid that I loved and had to make mine:

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How cute are those buttons up the back? This is also supremely versatile and perfect for a travel capsule wardrobe.

Splendid was having a sale when I ordered the striped top, and I added this witty spectacles tee to my order (It’s still available and on sale). The tiny eyeglasses print is adorable.

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Y-necklaces are not new and are probably even trending out, but I recently saw someone wearing one and still liked how it looked. Again, much looking, but I finally settled on this Kendra Scott number:

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These aren’t new to my wardrobe (I’ve had them for at least a year), but I also just put these M.M. LaFleur Foster pants into heightened rotation:

Screen shot from M.M. LaFleur site

Screen shot from M.M. LaFleur

One great perk for these pants: they have internal buttons inside the bottom so you can adjust the length from cropped to full. Seriously, how cool is that? This also makes them the perfect pair of pants for travel, because you can mix them up.

Did I mention that they also look great with striped tops, Y-necklaces and Chelsea boots? 

 

 

 

 

Closet Update Fall 2015

I was serious when I previously mentioned here and here that I own too much stuff and need to edit, edit, edit.

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For fall, I haven’t purchased many casual clothes yet (exception being my Elizabeth & Clarke order), although I have my eye on this sweater and scarf from Banana Republic.

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Fisherman Sweater in Oatmeal

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Annabel Plaid Wool Scarf

Seriously, plaid scarves are still everywhere this season.

While I’ve been vigilantly deleting my email offers from Banana, J. Crew and all of my other favorite haunts, I did pony up for some new work duds.

The dress code at my workplace is described as “business formal.”

That means suits or dresses. Every day.

Like everyone who starts working at This World Famous Medical Center, I had to go on a suit shopping spree before I started there seven years ago.

Seven years ago.

That was after MGM but before Trixie, after one marathon but before eight, after 30 but before 40, etc. You get the idea.

A lot has happened in that interval but when I recently scanned my overstuffed closet, every one of those original suits was still there.

Granted, I’ve added many pieces in the interim and some of the old stuff hasn’t seen the light of day in a looooong time. Some of it fits. Much of it doesn’t.

Since Stitch Fix has been letting me down so much lately and never really had the building blocks I needed (they’re more fun pieces than work staples), I’ve been hitting M.M. LaFleur hard.

(See my first post here).

This fall I invested in a Toi dress, which I absolutely love.

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The fit is perfect and the quality is excellent. I tried to get it in a teal color, too, but was unsuccessful. The kind stylists at M.M. told me that it was coming out soon in two new shades, blackberry and rye, so I’m staying hopeful.

The Hanna dress in cornflower blue and black also made their way into my wardrobe. Although these both are fine for work, they feel more like party dresses to me. I took the blue one on our recent Alaska trip and wore it to formal night on the cruise.

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Since these dresses are sleeveless, I also needed a jacket to wear over them. I received a black Angelique jacket in my first order. It was very flattering, non-wrinkly, and the quality of the knit reminded me of St. John.

I also received the Sant Ambroeus in lavender in my second order and ended up liking the clean cut even better than the Angelique. I had to keep my eye on the website but eventually I was able to snap it up in black, too.

The last piece from my initial M.M. LaFleur spree was this cocoon sweater, which – alas! – is no longer available.

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This is a cozy layering piece, not a Jedi robe, which is what it looks like above.

And now, M.M. just launched a new collection called #PracticeMakes.

Since my recent habits got me into the V.I.P. Presale (ummm, yes, embarrassing), I had a chance to order before the collection went live last week.

There are several new versions of their staples and a few entirely new pieces. I felt like the Toi dress, the jackets and the cocoon sweater would tide me over for fall and winter, and the Hanna dresses would be sufficient for spring and any warm weather travel during the winter.

Except…

There was one more thing I had to make mine. This Graham sweater in Midnight Green really caught my attention from the #PracticeMakes collection.

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This looks like a great transitional layering piece in a color that is mostly absent from my wardrobe. I can’t wait to get it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

M.M. LaFleur Bento Box #1

Recently I was introduced to M.M. LaFleur via my favorite new blog, Hitha on the Go.

[Ok, I am super nuts about Hitha’s blog, and – truly, I swear! – not in a creepy way. She also sent a nice message thanking me for my fan post about her blog, which was completely awesome].

Back to business: M.M. LaFleur is sort of like an upscale Stitch Fix that focuses on work wear.

Their hook is that you can sign up for a Bento Box, which consists of 4-6 wardrobe pieces selected for you after completing a personal style profile.

They also have a carefully curated online shop carrying plenty of things that caught my eye, but I decided to go for the element of surprise and ordered a Bento.

How it works: You get the items and have four days to decide what to keep. You pay for what you like and the rest gets sent back.

Unlike Stitch Fix, there’s no keep-it-all discount, and the pieces are all considerably more spendy than Stitch Fix’s usual fare.

Here’s what I received:

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Everything was packaged in a plastic zip-lock bag inside a cardboard box

 

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From top to bottom, these are an Etsuko dress, the Sarah 4.0, a Hanna dress, and the Angelique blazer.

First of all, the fabrics and cuts of all of these items were really nice. The quality was outstanding.

The bad part is that the top two dresses looked absolutely terrible on me.

They managed to emphasize all the parts of my figure that I’d rather forget. Ugh. Sigh.

Back they went.

The Hanna, however, was absolutely perfect. I loved it the minute I saw it on the website. Now I only hope I can score it in black, too.

The Angelique was also very nicely constructed and reminded me of a St. John knit blazer. Keeper.

The last item in the box was this book:

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The M.M. LaFleur site specifically mentions that they sometimes will throw a free gift into a Bento, and at first glance, that’s exactly what I thought this was.

Except the sticker in the upper right says that you will be charged if you unwrap the book from its plastic covering. Which I did. Sayonara, $26.

In the end, I kept the Hanna dress, the Angelique blazer and the book.

And I ordered another Bento. 

Once I get my sizing figured out, I’ll probably place a strategic order from their online shop for a few more pieces.

I say “strategic” because I made a quick calculation of all the clothes and jewelry (they have great jewelry!) I liked and the tally was north of $2400, so the Wish List and the Buy List are not likely to coincide.

Returns were easy. They sent a label and even a piece of tape to seal the box. I dropped it off at a UPS store less than 24 hours after the box arrived on my doorstep.

Here’s a close-up of the inside of the box, which I thought was a fun touch:

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