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In The Changing Room

LoftThis past week has been a blur. The kids have been home on school break which couldn’t have come at a better time. I’ve just about had my fill of school projects and homework. Neither of which can be done independently. Not for the girls at least.

And am I the only one who feels like projects are more stressful for the parents than they are for the kids? I swear I break out in hives when I get project notifications in their folders. Give me math story problems any day of the week over projects.

But that’s not really what I want to talk about today. I have much more interesting news to share. As many of you know, I’ve been working at home for quite some time as a consultant in social media.

My job is essentially finding online influencers to deliver brand messaging by the way of blog posts and shares on every social media platform out there. And for those of you who don’t know what that means, I’m talking about getting brand messaging out on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.

From day one I’ve loved my job. After working in the blogosphere for six years, I’ve cultivated many relationships with brands and bloggers. Playing matchmaker between the two is so much fun and it never gets boring.

That said, working from home is rather isolating. Sure, it’s comfortable to work in my jammies and I enjoy the flexibility of creating my own work schedule, but it’s also quite lonely. And as you very well know, I’m a very social creature.

Also, consulting is not a dependable source of income. Nor does it have any traditional workplace benefits such as insurance or a 401k. And the thought of working in an office with other people who love to do what I do is a very appealing thing. I crave being a member of a team.

All of that to say, I got a real, no kidding, in a high rise kind of job. And that explains why I’ve been so quiet lately. For the past two months I’ve been working on my resume and researching exactly what companies I’d like to work for. And in the end I received an offer letter from the company I admire the most.

I’ll write about that more extensively in a coming post, but for today I just want to talk about fashion in the workplace. I have a vast conference wardrobe, but my business casual wardrobe is lacking. If you follow what I’ve been pinning on Pinterest, you’ll notice a shift in my pins away from food and onto fashion.

So the other day when Loft invited me to check out their Prudential Center store with the help from a stylist, I happily agreed to visit.

Melanie at LoftWhen I went to Boston for my interview, I was amazed at how the women managed to look so polished while wearing jeans. And my first request for the stylist was to help me figure out how to achieve that look. From what I learned it’s all about the accessories such as scarves, statement necklaces and the right shoes to make jeans go from everyday to work chic.

The outfit you see above is simply a pair of skinny jeans I already own paired with a cardigan, cami and a bright scarf to jazz things up. Comfortable and with the times. But not with the times so much that I feel like I’m trying to dress younger than I actually am. Such a hard thing to balance sometimes.

Melanie LoftEven though my new workplace is very business casual, I do gravitate towards dresses. And a simple trick I learned from the stylist is to dress down a dress by wearing a cardigan with it. A cardigan and a pair of flats. Easy enough!

While at Loft I checked out the winter clearance because I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to wear winter clothing straight through May at the rate we’re going. And right now Loft has a killer clearance sale going on which allowed me to pick up a new blazer which was originally over $100 for only $24, a black cardigan that was originally $50 for $25 and the dress you see above that was also over $100 for only $30. Awesome deals!

I still have a few things to find to round out my work wardrobe which includes a new pair of boots that aren’t high heels. I seem to own a lot of high heels and very few flats. That will have to change.

For those of you who have office jobs, I’d love to hear what your style is? Is your workplace casual or more formal? What are your favorite stores to shop for work clothing?

This is not a sponsored post. I paid for everything you see above.

Comments

  1. Nice duds. You look great. Congrats again on the new gig. :)

  2. Congratulations Melanie!! Woo-hoo! You look fabulous in your new outfits and hair style. Good luck on your new job!

  3. Congratulations on your new job Melanie. I hope that it goes really well for you and that you love it and that they love you – what’s not to love hey!! You look great in your new outfits too, so I am sure that you and your wardrobe will be a hit from day one!! Yay!!!!!!!!!! xx

    • Thanks Amy! The company I’ll be working for is everything I think an agency should be. Passionate, dedicated and team oriented. I’m so looking forward to working with them.

  4. Congratulations! I am anxious to hear what other people’s styles are. I am at home and super casual mostly.

    • Yup, I hear you. When I work from home it’s sloth like comfort clothing. Finding my style for the workplace has been challenging. My wardrobe is either super casual or ultra professional. Not a lot of middle ground!

  5. Congrats on your new job Melanie! I can’t wait to hear all about it!

    Love that blue dress..what a steal at only $30!

  6. congratulations eh!! Those outfits look very “smart” on you!!! I gave up dressing up for work when I was working in a cube Ville call center.

  7. Congrats on the new job!!
    I am the office manager at a small non-profit, and while we’re business casual, we’re not allowed to wear jeans.
    My favorite places to shop are Loft and Banana Republic Outlet. I always shop at the BR Outlet when they’re having a 50% off everything sale and I bring my reusable BR tote for an additional 10% off.

    • Oh how I love the BR outlet. BR is one of my very favorites. Especially the accessories. They have the best!! I didn’t know about the BR tote. I’ll have to look into that. Thanks for the heads up.

  8. I work in an office that’s business casual. I tend to shop mostly at Loft, The Limited, and Gap. I like to wear black cotton/polyester pants from NY&C (that I’ve had for years and years) with a t-shirt. That’s my comfy outfit. I just need to find some more shoes. I wore my black leather ones out last year and my black Nikes look funny with my dress pants. :-)

    Anyway, I find consistently Loft and The Limited have the best sales and the best options of both dressy and business casual.

    • Yup, I picked up a pair of black pants like you described. A fundamental piece for sure. The women at the office mostly wear boots from what I saw. Boots or ballet flats. Looks like my heels will be retired for awhile, lol.

  9. I love the outfits and congrats on the new job offer – I can’t wait to hear all about it!

    • Thanks Karen. I’m going to take lots of pictures my first day and I’ll share a bit about the job and the transition. :)

  10. Nancy Vining says:

    Congratulations, Melanie. You look tres fabulous and I am loving the softer curly hair.

    I’m retired in 2012 so I’ve transitioned to a Home Casual style for days I don’t run errands; a long blue bathrobe and bunny slippers. For those days I want to pay homage to the business world (and run out to check mail), I just add a pair of leather loafers. Life sure is a lot different.

    I know you’ll have great success as you step out on your new path.

  11. Loft has insane online sales. I get a lot of stuff when they have a sale and then a “take 20% (or 50%!) off sale items), marking tops to the high single digits or low teens (I can’t get their pants online….cuts vary a lot and many of the sales are not returnable).

    I don’t know if I’d recommend “friending” them as brilliant or awful…great sales, but hard to resist!

    Hope things keep going well professionally and that the homework cooperates with the busy schedule!

  12. Congratulations!! ooo I love the blue dress! Very cute.

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