Monthly Archives: April 2010

Runway Inspiration: Spring Crop

Combining high-end glamour with practicality, these slacks will be a work wardrobe essential next fall. In fact, one of the CC founders just picked some up from Sammy Davis Vintage (naturally) for herself and is currently looking for the perfect duds before donning them. They project a smart effortlessness despite the fact that the drape makes the search for The Perfect Pair a bit difficult. It’s all worth it in the end… look at how eye-catching they are! The Marc by Marc Jacobs look typifies the overall style: slightly drapy (never baggy) slacks cinched with the a belt and pulled together with a lace-up bootie.

Whether you like the skinny version (a la Milly by Michelle Smith) or the harem pant-inspired fuller leg, the cropped, high-waisted pant can do wonders for concealing hips and accentuating waists, kind of like A-line skirts. The trick is to find the pair that works with your body. The classic looking ones from Ralph Lauren are CC favorites.

The runway looks you see below are just for inspiration as they’re out of the CC girl’s budget. Don’t fret! Fantastic, cheaper options do exist and here’s where you can look:

Top Shop, $70: I love the gold button accents on these! They’d look darling with a striped blouse and golden anchor necklace.

Hanii Y, $71: on SALE! These basic black slacks are the ideal segue into the looser cut.

BR Monogram, $98: For those of you who are weary of trying the trend, you know it’s O.K. to wear to work when BR Mono has a pair!

Oh, and did I mention how perfect they are for office attire? With some flats, you’ll be sleek, comfy and sophisticated ūüôā


Marc by Marc Jacobs / Photo Credit: nymag.com


Milly by Michelle Smith / Photo Credit: nymag.com


Oscar de la Renta / Photo Credit: nymag.com


Ralph Lauren / Photo Credit: nymag.com

Ralph Lauren / Photo Credit: nymag.com

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It’s Time for Wellies

Want to know the most important must-have spring/summer item in NYC?¬† Rain boots!¬† If this summer is even close to being a repeat of 2009, then it’s going to rain all June and July, and wellies will need to be worn nearly every day.

Here at Cubicle Chic, we choose to have fun with our rainy day attire. Both of us wear patterned rain boots that have, on several occasions, elicited pleasing commentary from passersby.  Their subtle silliness adds a little color to those dreary, wet days.

One cannot look at rain boots without considering Hunter.¬† You wouldn’t know it from walking the streets on New York, but the company actually offers its original style in a rainbow of boot colors.

Photo Credit: Neon Bible

Photo Credit: Jildor Shoes

Photo Credit: Target Wholesale

However, if you aren’t feeling the $115 price tag, where else can you look?

Target has an excellent collection of fun rain boots at affordable prices.  I like the one below with the little, red birdie for $24.99:

Photo Credit: Target.com

*****

Another great place to shop for boots (and shoes) is endless.com.  Here is one interesting option from DAV I found for $89.95:

Image Credit: duvetbright.info

Check out the awesome lace-up in the back!

*****

Another endless.com pick is this Sperry Top-Sider boot for $58.33:

Image Credit: Shoebuy.com

I love the burgundy –¬†the royal hue reinforces the boot’s sturdy look.

*****

And now for some stripes and buckles with a pair of Chooka rain boots from DSW for $39.95:

Image Credit: Piperlime.com

In case you aren’t ready to add color to your rainy day commuting shoes, these boots are still fun while remaining understated.

*****

I’m loving the caramel color of these boots from Kamik for $59.95:

Photo Credit: Shopping.com

You don’t see this color as an option very often, and doesn’t it actually look like caramel?¬† Mmmm mmmm good.

*****

LOBSTER BOOTS:

Image Credit: DLL Rainwear

For $49.95, they are adorable, right?¬† These will bring a smile to anyone’s face!¬† In my opinion, when you’re a Mainer, lobsters look good on anything ūüôā

Finally, I leave you with a site that I came across during my search that is pretty good for browsing. ¬†It’s called DLL Rainwear. ¬†The site is just for boots, rain jackets and umbrellas, so you don’t have to sift through heels, sandals or any other clothing that has nothing to do with staying dry. ¬†They even have frog rain boots for adults!

Happy Stomping!

Photo Credit: Found here.

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In Praise of the A-Line Skirt

The skirt that complements all figures!¬† Ladies, isn’t it nice to know that there is at least one skirt out there that will look smashing on everyone?¬†¬†The A-line skirt!¬† It sits comfortably on the hips and then subtly flares out so that it’s not hugging anything that doesn’t want to be hugged.¬† With a cute pair of flats or heels, this type of skirt is a success in both professional and casual environments.¬† The A-line simply makes every girl look cute!

This particular skirt is fun for me since it is (GASP!) patterned.¬† Under some friendly guidance, I was convinced to step out of my solids-only comfort zone and try what at the time felt like¬†a bold pattern.¬† Well, the venture worked, and now I’m a supporter of breaking out of the pencil skirt uniform once in a while¬†and¬†swapping¬†it with a little patterned flair.

Remember this H&M blazer from last week and how I said that I couldn’t get enough of it? ¬†Well, voila! ¬†Outfit #2 where the blazer just makes it all come together. ¬†Because they were purchased separately, I was very pleased to discover that they went together so well. ¬†Besides their excellent color coordination, a fitted blazer is a good choice to complement an a-line skirt because it offsets the skirt’s billowy shape by creating a more structured look on the top half of your body.¬†¬†That’s the general rule:¬†¬†one part loose + one part fitted = one great outfit!

You may have noticed … Lindsay and I love to accent an outfit with colorful shoes!¬† These are some Nine West gems picked up on sale when their 59th Street location was going out of business (recession, ugh).¬† They are pointy (yessssss), faux snakeskin (YESSSSS) and green (YESS!!!!).¬† Oh, and did I mention that they are insanely comfortable? They are like Cole Hann Nike Air comfortable, but for a fraction of the price. Any other suggestions on where to find incredibly comfortable heels?

Meredith’s Look:

Shoes: Nine West ($25)

Skirt: Gap ($35)

Shirt: Gap ($25)

Blazer: H&M ($20)

I leave you with some spring blossoms…

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Filed under Corporate Style, Meredith's Looks

Suiting Up: Dress Shirts from London

As I was looking through my closet in preparation for my summer job, I noticed a surprising lack of good dress shirts. ¬†Indeed, I really had only two or three shirts of high enough quality for professional wear. ¬†Perhaps it’s the upcoming British elections (for the record, the Gentleman would vote Tory) that has caused me to think about London lately, but¬†my thoughts immediately wandered to Jermyn Street and¬†that London institution’s legendary dress shirts.

Photo Credit: eurovac 09Photo Credit: Eurovac 09

For decades, Jermyn Street has been the place to find a perfectly tailored shirt in London. More than just a place to shop, shirtmakers with a Jermyn Street address are considered to have reached the pinnacle of their craft.¬†It is¬†no surprise then that Jermyn Street has outfitted such iconic Brits as Winston Churchill and James Bond. With this illustrious legacy, one would think that the shirtmakers would charge prices so exorbitant that only gentlemen with checking accounts to rival those of Mssrs. Churchill and Bond would be able to afford them. Not so! Buying shirts from Jermyn St. is both more affordable and of an astronomically higher quality than buying shirts from “typical” stores in the mall, and no plane ticket across the pond is required.¬†The power of the Internet has brought Jermyn St. to us!

First off, some preliminary information: British shirts are very different in style than American dress shirts. The most notable difference is the collar. Typical American shirt collars are either point collars or button-down collars. In contrast, British shirts feature spread collars. Collar style is a personal preference and certain collars go better with certain face types (to be discussed in the future). A British spread collar shirt also goes better with thicker, wider ties since there is a lot more room for a larger tie knot, while American point or button-down collar shirts match better with thinner, slimmer ties. British shirtmakers also favor more vibrant colors and patterns, especially stripes and checks in pastel colors. The combination of the wide-spread collar and the brightly colored patterns lead to a very aggressive looking shirt that is often favored by men in banking and management positions on either side of the Atlantic.

American Point Collar

Photo Credit: Dann-Online

British Spread Collar

Photo Credit: Dann-Online

The key to getting a great deal on a Jermyn Street shirt is knowing which shirtmaker to buy from and buying several shirts at a time. Some shirtmakers, like Turnbull & Asser and Thomas Pink, are quite expensive and outside of this Gentleman’s budget.¬†However, there are three classic Jermyn Street shirtmakers that provide shirts at excellent prices: Charles Tyrwhitt, T.M. Lewin and Harvie and Hudson. Of those three, Harvie and Hudson is a bit more pricey but has the best reputation. The way to go for each of these stores is to buy their bulk deals. Both Charles Tyrwhitt and T.M. Lewin offer any four shirts for 100 ¬£. I sprang for two shirts from Harvie and Hudson and my roommate picked up a third to round out the deal. After shipping and currency conversion, each shirt came out to $55, lower than the price of dress shirts at mall retailers like Banana Republic and J. Crew.

For my first Harvie and Hudson purchase, I chose a pink button cuffed shirt and blue French cuffed (the Brits called these Turn Back cuffs) shirt with a contrasting white collar. Both shirts have a spread collar and fierce coloring, typifying the British look. Below you can see these shirts when paired with ties, also from Jermyn Street, to complete the look. The weight of the fabric is exceptional and after one wash, the shirts seem quite sturdy. This is is stark contrast to the dress shirts that I have from stores like H&M that feature thin cotton that have not held up well.

All in all, I’m very happy with my first Jermyn St. purchase and would highly recommend considering shopping British for any gentleman looking to expand his dress shirt collection at a reasonable price.

Next time: The Gentleman will consider a rainbow of polo shirts. See you then!

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Obsessed with the Polka Dot Dress

Who doesn’t love New York in the spring? It’s so gorgeous, I can’t stand it. Unfortunately, New York isn’t a town-for-all-seasons. It’s f-f-f-freezing in the winter and hot and sticky (…and stinky) in the summer. In fact, there are approximately two to four weeks of “perfect weather” in this city each year and this week happens to be one of them. This dress, on the other hand, is a year-round beauty. With black nylons and a chunky-knit black sweater (or “blush” colored sweater, to match the dots) it’s perfect for chilly autumn and winter days. The sleeve ruffles make it a touch too casual for the office, so I always pair it with this white grandpa-style cardigan… perfect for spring and summer.

My Lulu Guinness booties are quite possibly the most comfortable and most complimented shoes I own. I’ve worn them so much, I’m afraid of wearing them out! I need to bring them to a good, cheap cobbler… stay tuned for a recommendation ūüôā

The ruffle detail is so pretty and feminine, don’t you think?

This would be a perfect day-to-night cocktail dress, just slip the cardigan off and add tons of bangles (not shown here, I’m still working on my collection!) – perhaps a necklace –¬†and you’ll be ready to hit the town in no time.

TAXI!

Lindsay’s Look

Black polka dot dress: Urban Outfitters, $65

Cardigan: BCBG Max Azria Outlet, $30

Black booties: Lulu Guinness, $350 (but they were a gift from working a Huminska fashion show)

Earrings: Courtesy of Meredith

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A Pleated Skirt on Park Ave

Now that below freezing temperatures are a thing of past, it’s time to bring out some spring and summer pieces from the depths of my wardrobe.¬† This black pleated skirt from Banana Republic is one of those. It’s lightweight and perfect for these warm spring days.¬† One of the skirt’s major attributes is that it translates quite well into an evening look. ¬†Add a little extra color or bling and you’re ready for drinks with friends!

This skirt can pose a small risk: you never know when a breeze might come through and *whooops!* your skirt just did a little flip.  I saw this happen to a girl crossing Park Ave on a particularly windy autumn morning and just felt so embarrassed for her РI wanted to rush over and quietly commiserate!  Luckily (or unluckily?) for her, she had no clue that her cute skirt was doing backflips behind her, so no commiserating was necessary.

This is my favorite ring!¬† Besides having good memories tied to it, I’m always receiving compliments for its great color and size.¬† I really enjoy its simple focus on the turquoise stone – no need to get fancy with frivilous silverwork. ¬†Sidenote: black nail polish? What do we think??

Final point: this short-sleeved blazer is such a versatile piece. Perhaps too versatile (if that’s possible.) Most mornings I want to wear it, but then remember that I wore it the day before!¬† Since it is a short blazer, it works especially well with high waisted skirts and pants. ¬†Best of all, it was an inexpensive H&M purchase! ¬†I wish that I had been smart enough to pick one up in black when I bought this last spring.

Happy Friday to you all!  Enjoy the weekend!  Saturday is looking promising with sunshine and a high of 70!

Meredith’s Look:

Skirt: Banana Republic, $45

Shirt: Banana Republic, $25

Blazer: H&M, $20

Shoes: Steve Madden, $60

Ring: Parisian souvenir

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Mellow Yellow Paired with Plum

Does this skirt look familiar? It should! Mere wore it during our Sammy Davis Vintage photoshoot.

Park Avenue has been seriously SMELLING like spring lately. You can’t get away from the whiff of fresh flowers, which is highly unusual for a busy New York City street.

I am in LOVE with this ensemble for a few reasons:

1. I never get to wear my taxi-yellow pumps. I wouldn’t wear them in the office because mine is too conservative, but I would encourage those of you with enough fashion leeway to do so!

2. The skirt is Sammy Davis Vintage. Enough said.

3. The shirt is one of my favorite styles from Banana Republic. I bought one full price at the BR birthday event last fall and loved it so much I bought two more of the same shirt in different colors – after it went on sale ūüôā

4. The contrast of purple and yellow (or other color wheel opposites like orange and blue, or turquoise and red…but not green and red because that’s too Christmas-y) will always create a “stunning” factor. I wore this outfit (minus the shoes and plus black nylons) to the office and got so many compliments! Taking a *little* risk is always good in the office. But remember, a little goes a long way. Less is more.

LOVE dresses and skirts with pockets. My fave!

Pretty springtime earrings!

This is a random sculpture across the street from where Meredith and I spend most of our waking hours. We couldn’t resist photographing him – the classic businessman! It’s called “Taxi” and the artist is J. Seward Johnson Jr.

Lindsay’s Mellow Yellow Look:

Shirt: Banana Republic, $28 on sale

Skirt: Sammy Davis Vintage, $15

Pumps: Nine West, $50

Earrings: Courtesy of Meredith

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