Spring: Mint dress, neutrals + cap toe pumps

handmmint2
H&M dress, belt & clutch, Gap blouse, CL Pigalle 85 pumps (similar for less)

Boston weather teased me last week, allowing for 2 days of bare legs before freezing cold took over again. I jumped at the chance to break out this dress that I painstakingly altered + hemmed over a month ago. The fresh mint went perfectly with my latest loves - blush pink & cream cap-toed Louboutins scored at a great price (pre-owned via eBay).
handmmint6
Blair of Atlantic-Pacific styled this same dress beautifully with an elegant mint tweed jacket and multi-strand pearls. Inspired, I delved into my growing tweed collection and came up with the following...
handmmint7This example illustrates something that I've become very aware of over the years: proportions. As a petite woman working with under 5 feet of height, the key to looking streamlined versus stumpy often lies in the proportions and lengths of my garments... 

Although I prefer the color/texture combo on the right, the hip-length jacket paired over a longer pencil dress makes me look top-heavy and short-legged (and much worse with flat shoes, which Blair pulled off effortlessly). The jacket on the left is only 2" shorter, but that makes quite a difference if you are petite. The longer jacket on the right also hits my hips at the widest point, so when that line joins with the dress, it effectively creates the illusion of a boxy rectangle versus the hourglass figure that I want.
handmmint8
Left: No 5. jacket in white sz S (review)   Right: Malang jacket sz S (review), both c/o Uniqueen

I also want to point out that the pairing on the left shows equal proportions of jacket, skirt, and legs, whereas the one on the right shows more jacket. This adds to the top-heaviness and makes me look broader, even though both jackets have the same shoulder width. An exception to this issue is when more leg is shown to counteract the longer top - ie. a long boyfriend blazer paired with a mini skirt and lotsa leg.
handmmint4
I've never tried a button-up shirt under a fitted pencil dress, but was inspired by my friend Ping in this post. The crisp collar and contrasting sleeves add a new dimension to the dress, but shirt lines underneath can get tricky. This probably works better with thin, sleeveless blouses.
handmmint5
While wearing this dress, I realized I needed to get some good shapewear, stat. I've been noticing strange lumps lately caused by un-toned flesh or ill-placed underwear lines, and also from the aforementioned shirt lines. I'm close to getting the Spanx Half-Slip Shaper, but am also curious about the Seamless Mid-Thigh Shaper from their less-expensive line, Assets by Sara Blakely (incredible, incredible businesswoman, by the way). From reading the descriptions, however, it seems that these pieces are more for slimming and not for concealing. If anyone has shapewear reviews or recommendations - please share!
handmmint
Readers - Have you delved into mint and/or cap toes this spring?

90 comments:

  1. It looks absolutely beautiful on you!
    You're looking minty fresh kid! :)
    xoxo
    www.natashafatah.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. you look so stunning! love the mint dress!
    xo, Tina

    ReplyDelete
  3. I am loving the mint color on everything from jeans to shirts to nail polishes! I have not tried cap toe shoes. I'm actually thinking of DIY cap toes for some old shoes that I have.

    Great outfit by the way. I like how the NO 5 jacket looks better.

    Helen

    ReplyDelete
  4. I have the seamless mid-thigh shaper and though this may sound strange, I have to say that they smell kind of odd after a full day of wearing. The material just gets this weird smell to it if you sweat at all and though friends promised they couldn't smell it, I felt self conscious. I obviously washed before wearing and every time I dared to wear them and it was truly no good. They do conceal though, so if you're just wearing them for a couple hours in winter, it should be fine!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I do like the color and texture of the right dress better, but I definitely felt like the left one looked better. I'm so glad you went on to say what it was that made it feel that way, because I couldn't put my finger on it. I'll definitely have to make a point to look for that with my own outfits now.

    ReplyDelete
  6. You look gorgeous as always Jean!!! love love mint!!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I love the layering! Mint is such a pretty colour on you. : )

    ReplyDelete
  8. This looks so good on you! You are always so good at pairing colors.

    I agree, the white blazer looks better, it lengthens the bottom half of you.

    I'm not into to either one of these trends this year. I generally stay away from pastels and I'm not loving the cap toes as much as the classics when it comes to pumps.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I love it when you give proportion advice! I'm still struggling on finding jackets that doesn't make me look more dumpy and stumpy. That is crazy how only a few inches make a big difference. I feel like I need to re-do my whole wardrobe. I'm definitely into mint this season, especially mint in jewelry or nail polish :) And still searching for the perfect cap-toe for me!

    ReplyDelete
  10. This looks so good on you! You are always so good at pairing colors.

    I agree, the white blazer looks better, it lengthens the bottom half of you.

    I'm not into to either one of these trends this year. I generally stay away from pastels and I'm not loving the cap toes as much as the classics when it comes to pumps.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I have the same idea too about the proportion. That's why I bought the No.5 tweed jacket instead the Malang.But they both worth the money.

    victoireannie.com

    ReplyDelete
  12. I've always loved pastels, especially the lighter hues of purple. But I love the way this minty green shade stands out against your skin tone, I find it to be very flattering. I also really like how the white blazer looks against the minty green, as well as how much more fitted it looks compared to the Malang jacket.

    xoxo,
    Genie

    www.uniqueandchicstyle.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  13. I love the mint trend this year especially since it's always been one of my favorite colors. I bought mint, ankle-zip crop jeans from J Crew this weekend (at least they were cropped on my non-petite 5'6'' 100lb frame). You look great and I love the dress and the left look! Lusting over your shoes too.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Gorgeous Jean =) That mint is a beautiful color on you... and after all those hard changes (I'm still not brave enough to do any alterations).

    After all these posts with all these beautiful bright colors, you might have inspired me to add a bit more color to my wardrobe!

    I may cave and get a No.5 tweed jacket as well ;)

    ReplyDelete
  15. hi jean!
    love this post! i an considering the No.5 jacket but I was wondering if you think it would be too cropped on someone 5'4"? I measured some of my blazers and your length measurement falls about an inch shorter than my shortest blazer. I'm unsure if it would look too cropped on me, i appreciate your input!
    thanks, vivian

    ReplyDelete
  16. delurking to say that I've been meaning to try a white button down under a sheath for a while, specifically one that was featured on the jcrew site, kinda like the current memo dress. (the button down was cuffed at elbow length)
    g

    ReplyDelete
  17. Really like your streamlined take on the mint trend. I am trying to find me at least one substantial piece....still looking.

    7eventh Letter

    ReplyDelete
  18. Great color combination! Your outfit is very classy and fun for spring.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Love the shoes and the outfit together!

    ReplyDelete
  20. wow, the difference of 2" in those jackets is crazy!! i was just putting a post together with mint!! and i remember when you said you got those shoes, nice find!

    ReplyDelete
  21. love your outfit and new CL score!! The malang is much too shaggy for my liking. Wholeheartedly agree the no. 5 is a cleaner, better fit. :)

    ReplyDelete
  22. Fantastic eBay score! And, I agree with you def the look on the left. The few inches really makes a difference when you don't have that many inches to work with to begin with :) I always find myself having to say no to items that don't sit right in proportion to my torso if I know I won't take the extra steps to get them altered.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Great outfit and as usual you look stunning.

    Mint - absolutely!! got a few pieces for this summer.
    Thinking about Cap toe shoes (heels or flats) - they seem to be everywhere!

    i have been following your blog for the last 3-4 months and have been inspired by so many of your pairings! Keep up the great work!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Those shoes are gorgeous, they make you look so polished.

    ReplyDelete
  25. amazing outfit! i love the mint green color!


    www.petiteandhungry.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  26. What an amazing outfit! The mint color is so great because it looks good on everyone and looks great on shoes, clothing, nails and jewelry. I love how you paired the dress with the blouse underneath and that fantastic belt!
    Ashley
    http://marriedinmontana.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  27. this dress is perfect for you!!! it's sleek and it hugs your body beautifully. i also like cap-toed shoes. especially flats. they're something different from your ordinary slip-ons.

    Shoetopia Giveaway -- 3 winners. Come and join! :D
    10% off discount code to Vantage Point Vintage

    :)
    Carrie
    http://readmylifeascarrie.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  28. i am loving the mint colour - really a breath of fresh air (pun intended!) i love this entire outfit!

    http://phiphi-phiphisblog.blogspot.ca/

    ReplyDelete
  29. obsessed with mint to, it's not just you! I love both blazers in each photo! yes, elongated legs, but love the texture in photo #2. You look beautiful my love. xO
    www.thehautecookie.com

    ReplyDelete
  30. Hey! The mint dress looks so clean on you with the outfit combos you put together! Any resemblance to a surgical gown has been totally eliminated thanks to your alterations that turned out so well. I just wanted to let you know that your blog has been the main resource for me while I am transitioning into the professional world with increasing instances where I have to look polished-- like for an interview at Harvard Medical. Your posts have been so informative to those of us who are petite and have been poking around in the dark over the matter of fit. While I'm about your height, I carry about 4.5kg more than you in the legs and hips. Another point that I enjoy is that being able to relate to someone else who has roots in Boston/ Canton.

    ReplyDelete
  31. love this outfit, jean! i saw that dress in store on a hanger and didn't think much of it until you wore it. i wished it came altered like that. btw i am in love with that belt and i have seen you wear a couple of times. i'm thinking it's from h&m too? i been looking for it but no luck.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Minty fresh honey! That belt is the perfect finishing touch to this classy ensemble...so chic!

    ReplyDelete
  33. I really love what you've done with that dress, that DIY is so genius and it's so cute. The jacket on the left definitely matches the dress better and makes it look put together. I think the jacket on the left would pair better with skinny jans and your red CL heels. Oh btw, how many pairs of Louboutins do you have? I'm so jealous, your collection is so sweet.

    Dude your blog is so helpful and inspirational! As a petite Asian girl too, I have issues finding clothes that fit, but since I'm a (grad) student, my clothes are casual, and it'll be a few years before I have to dress professionally. Your blog has taught my so much about professional dressing that is pretty! I thought I was confined to a life of boring slacks with basic button downs!

    Re: spanx and such: I bought a pair when I had a coupon, and I find them really uncomfortable to get into/out of (mine's a different style though). They'll smooth things out, but I'm not sure what exactly you might be looking for. If the problem appears just to be underwear lines, I suggest ultra seamless panties like such:

    http://www.victoriassecret.com/ss/Satellite?ProductID=1265771942309&c=Page&cid=1331606785825&pagename=vsdWrapper

    http://www.victoriassecret.com/ss/Satellite?ProductID=1265771830933&c=Page&cid=1331606785825&pagename=vsdWrapper

    ReplyDelete
  34. Wow, those shoes are absolutely stunning! I agree with you about the white jacket. It definitely hits your waist at the right spot, and does more for your body than the jacket on the right.

    http://www.xjole.com

    ReplyDelete
  35. I got the no 5 jacket & as expected the sleeves are too long for me. I was wondering where I should hem the sleeves to and where they should land? Thanks for your help!

    ReplyDelete
  36. You look gorgeous, as always, Jean! I agree that a more form-fitting, shorter jacket is much more flattering on us petites. This is why I often put together separates for workwear instead of traditional suits--much easier to find separate pieces that fit well instead of spending a bunch of money altering both pieces of a suit.

    I've picked up a mint shell and light scarf this spring as well as some cap-toed flats. Excited to wear them now that the weather is warm!

    ReplyDelete
  37. I love mint and cap toe shoes this season. I love how you layered the collared shirt underneath the dress. Your shoes are amazing! Great insight with the two different blazers paired with the dress. Although the No 5 blazer fits your frame better, I love how that Malang jacket looks paired with the mint dress.

    xoxo,
    Suzie Q
    Style Cue by Suzie Q

    ReplyDelete
  38. Love the dress on you! Have you tried boy shorts? They kinda help in avoiding the panty lines and give the clean and neat look!

    ReplyDelete
  39. Aww Jean you look so lovely and the dress looks so good on you! I tried this on but it didn't look good on me. I think the problem lies in the roominess under the armpits. You did a great DIY job by the way! :)

    ReplyDelete
  40. I love the mint+blush combo! Thanks for continually educating us on fit and proportion. Sometimes it's easy to throw things together without stepping back to asses proportions. I have thigh shapers form Spanx and from the ASSETS line. The Spanx is smooth, soft, and silky; while the ASSETS is scratchy. If you can find Spanx on sample sale they are a good deal! I tried on this full slip from Target and loved it except for the bust area - the straight line across was bothering me, but you should give it a try, esp fro ~$16 - http://www.target.com/p/Vassarette-Womens-Body-Curves-Full-Slip-Smooth-Chemise-Assorted-Colors/-/A-13788541 (link goes to the "curves" version, but the in-store one is not).

    ReplyDelete
  41. wow 1st of all I really love that colour, and as everyone already mentioned, it looks beautiful in you. Elegant but very feminine and relaxing at the same time. Perfect for spring

    ReplyDelete
  42. Thanks for another educational post Jean! I totally agree with the blazer needing to have the right proportions to fit a petite body. This nutmeg blazer that I have actually looks best on a short or mini skirt: http://www.keeyatch.com/2011/12/ootd-err-night.html
    If I wear them with with a longer skirt or jeans, it kinda makes me look frumpy.
    On the other hand, I always find myself in a debate on the length of skirt. I perfectly understand that it needs to hit right above the knee of right in the middle of the knee. What I usually lean towards to though is the one below the knee, which naturally cuts off the length of the legs. However, I think its because of the shape of my knee and calves that I find the need to hide them, with an exception that the skirt MUST be high waisted to elongate me a bit more like such: (this is exactly a bad example of a blazer fit ruining the purpose of the skirt hahahaha)
    http://www.keeyatch.com/2011/10/corporate.html

    ReplyDelete
  43. i just got educated! thanx plus this is an awesome look

    FASHION NOTEBOOK

    ReplyDelete
  44. Get the shorts (either Assets or Spanx) rather than the half-slip, because you'll go crazy trying to keep it in place. I love the shorts-type shapers for keeping shirt layers smooth and tucked-in under skirts, but I do usually have to fiddle with where the bottom of the legs hit, since my "mid-thigh" is not as long as a standard mid-thigh, and I don't want them peeking out under my skirt.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Wonderful post! Keep doing these tutorials on fit; it's what helps prevent us from making costly purchases because we don't understand the porportions we need (guilty!). As for the Spanx, I'd get the original. I have seen some good prices at Nordstrom's Rack. I was planning to get one too.

    I loved how you managed to layer without it looking too "girlish". Whenver I'd add a shirt to a shift dress, it had this pinafore look to it, like I was back in 1st grade.

    Great post as always.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Love the belt! Very unique buckle matched with leather. Btw, I agree with you that the jacket in white looks better for the match! Keep up with the good work.

    I love love love your blog. Am following you :)

    wytane.blogspot.com x

    ReplyDelete
  47. I don't follow trends. But I do love the mint color. The cap toe shoes aren't my style.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Hi Jean, I absolutely love your blog. I have a question about the H&M clothes you own, such as this dress -- do you wear them to work? The reason I ask is that I find H&M fabrics to wrinkle terribly after a very short period of time, particularly around the hips of a dress (due to sitting). Maybe the quality has gotten better since I haven't shopped there in a while. Thanks again for the wonderful advice. I bought those Goody spin pins based on your recommendation.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Jean, it is so lovely to watch your style blossom! I think this outfit is a perfect example of your growing skill in mixing different pieces at different price points, and mixing trends with classics; tips that are so helpful to women (of all sizes really!) who like to be smart and savvy with their personal styles. Thank you for sharing your trials and errors with us. It's so inspiring to read a style blog that is very much driven by practicality, timelessness, and an open mind.

    ReplyDelete
  50. I must admit I was hoping for an April 1 post from Petite Asian Boy, but this post was just terrific! Your studied approach to fashion is so informative. I showed my boyfriend your photos with superimposed leg line diagrams to demonstrate why I love your blog so much, and he was very impressed. Keep up the great work!

    ReplyDelete
  51. Wow, when I first saw this dress in stores I thought: huh. Wow. Will be hard to style and wear nicely. But you make it look so beautiful, really!
    I just learned from you to look at different lengths of those jackets. That`s something I haven`t actually thought about yet but makes so much sense! Thank you for sharing all of your knowledge. You have a very good eye for all those little details, I am really impressed.

    ReplyDelete
  52. You make the dress look great and effortless, and thanks for the tip I'll keep it in mind

    ReplyDelete
  53. I love this dress with the first tweed jacket. It looks a little shorter than the fringed tweed jacket and therefore you look like you have longer legs.

    ReplyDelete
  54. This dress looks gorgeous on you! I love it with the nude undershirt, too! <3


    http://worldtag.us

    ReplyDelete
  55. That mint dress is gorgeous on you! I'll be watching the comments to get some advice on shapewear too!

    ReplyDelete
  56. You look great.
    Interesting blazer comparison...I wonder though if you wore a longer length blazer, but with a fitted waist (or a belted blazer, 1940s-style), if you might be able to have the same length and have it be more flattering. Just a thought.
    --April

    ReplyDelete
  57. i really like how the dress turned out. it was a great DIY. you look fab in that color.

    i havn't gotten on the color mint trend yet but i am eyeing a couple of cap toes pumps.

    ReplyDelete
  58. Love the shirt and dress combo! You look amazing as always

    ReplyDelete
  59. I know this is besides the point, but your hair looks really good in the 'Truncates Leg' picture lol.
    If you find a dress slip or whatever that you like, please share. I feel like there are so many of those products flooding the market that I have no idea where to begin narrowing it down.
    Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  60. The white + mint green = so fresh and pretty on you. Perfect spring outfit! Also, those shoes are such a great find. I'm a big fan of pointy heels - I think they are more elongating than the almond toe

    ReplyDelete
  61. Jean, what colour is the no.5 tweed jacked in the left picture?

    ReplyDelete
  62. Oops sorry, just noticed you said it's the whit one.

    ReplyDelete
  63. I always thought light pale/light colors make my Asian skin look really washed out, but after seeing your post it's actually quite flattering on your skin tone. Love the shoes!

    ReplyDelete
  64. You are absolutely right about the shape line of the dress to jacket. I was going to say I liked the one on the right better because, I too like texture. And I just really like that blazer. But I do think the white blazer and mint dress compliment you more. And how on earth did you get that button up to fit underneath? I have the hardest time with that!
    http://aneyeforfashion.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  65. Wow - huge difference on the jacket length! I loved when Ping layered her dress and love your take on it with mixing nude + mint. I have 2 existing minty shirts in my closet that didn't get much use...until now LOL.

    ReplyDelete
  66. Found a deal for some shapewear:

    http://www.groupon.com/deals/gg-womens-shapewear

    Not sure if that's what you're going for, but I thought I'd toss it your way. You always give me such great tips!

    ReplyDelete
  67. adore the new shoes!

    I tried the Spanx for Target shapewear and the quality difference to me was huge. Stuff would roll up and under while I was wearing it and became super uncomfy to wear. Get the real Spanx it does what it's meant to do. It's totally worth the money!

    ReplyDelete
  68. I have say that I like the Assets line better. I have the mid thigh shorts in the original Spanks and the Assets line. The smallest size in the original spanks ride up my thighs at my crotch (cutting off my circulation at the top of my thigh) and roll at the ends, while the Assets actually stay in place. The Assets are not quite as smooth and are a bit longer but under anything that is no shorter than an inch above my knee, I always grab the Assets. I have not tried the half slip and can only imagine it would ride up even worse.

    ReplyDelete
  69. PS - you got a shout out from the Washingtonian style section
    http://www.washingtonian.com/blogs/shoparound/blogroll.php

    ReplyDelete
  70. obsessed with this dress, the blouse underneath and the cap toes!

    http://forallthatjas.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  71. The cap toe pumps are super cute Jean. And the No.5 jacket adds extra appeal to the cute outfit.

    Beautiful, as usual. :)

    ReplyDelete
  72. I love the simplicity of the outfit! I like the first "flattering?" look (: The cap toe heels are fun and sort of edgy without being on the boarder of gothic.


    Allie
    alyssadaily.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  73. I love the No.5 jacket with the mint dress! I've wavered on buying either the No.5 or the Malang from Uniqueen since I first saw your post on the Malang. I'm beginning to think No.5 is the winner :)

    ReplyDelete
  74. I'm starting to really love the Uniqueen jackets because of you and Wendy :)
    You look great and I love the mint/green color!

    ReplyDelete
  75. i've been following your blog for a while now and i just love your pairings! i work for a consulting firm and sometimes we have to go on-site to client locations and they're not always offices but manufacturing plants. you're not allowed to wear heels on the floor so most of the time i have to wear these dowdy platform/loafer type shoes and i never know how to pair a flattering outfit with unflattering shoes. i try to pair the shoes with tailored trouser pants but i always end up looking boxy. any advice?

    ReplyDelete
  76. Hey Jean!

    Thanks to your beautiful outfit posts with the CL simple nude pump, I treated myself to a pair for my birthday! ;) I'm a huge fan of your blog and love your style!

    Have a happy weekend wherever you are. Hope you have a wonderful Easter!

    xoxo,
    Luna from the Red Pants - http://xoxoLuna.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  77. Those pumps are absolutely gorgeous. I'm so jealous! I've never even considered purchasing CL from ebay; I'm weary of fakes. Can you do a tutorial on how to score those deals? I'm a size 5.5-6 so I won't be bidding against you ;) And about the shapewear, honestly I can't believe tiny YOU are asking about shapewear! I wish there was shapewear to hide unsightly protruding scapula and hip bones!

    ReplyDelete
  78. You and your blog are so very lovely.

    ReplyDelete
  79. Jean! why you look so goooooddd?? :P even though i'm on a strict shopping ban (saving for wedding), i ran to h&m just to look for that dress/belt! couldn't find my size so i left empty-handed :(

    ReplyDelete
  80. loving this classic with a twist of preppy look x

    ReplyDelete
  81. i have been following your blog and videos for a while now but havent commented earlier. I am a little taller but very thin ..your outfit ideas are just amazing. I love the way u mix things, and reuse things.It has inspired me to make changes to my ill fitted clothes. I am eagerly looking forward to your next post ..

    ReplyDelete
  82. Your dress are so beautiful ,mabey you need some jewelry to make you more shine ,such as sterling silver tiffany charm bracelets .

    ReplyDelete
  83. Recently, based on the Britain Medium reports, psychologist in their country find the reason why women always take handbag anywhere and anytime is because different color trendy handbags could bring enough confidence for them.

    ReplyDelete
  84. Tiffany, The symbol of the American design. Being on the world fashion top for nearly two centuries with its love and beauty, romance and the dream theme. And tiffany diamond pendant filled all the ladies' fantasies and desires with its beauty sense and soft thin nastic .

    ReplyDelete
  85. Tiffany, The symbol of the American design. Being on the world fashion top for nearly two centuries with its love and beauty, romance and the dream theme. And tiffany heart pendant filled all the ladies' fantasies and desires with its beauty sense and soft thin nastic .

    ReplyDelete
  86. If you are going to buy a pair of shoes and enjoy a wonderful life now, believe me, ugg argyle knit boots must be your smart choice.

    ReplyDelete

 
Pin It button on image hover