Signature Style: Classic tweed, pencil dress, and pearls


Asos Petite dress (similar and similar), H&M; blouse, Jacket c/o Uniqueen sz S (my review)
Louboutin cap toes from eBay, Talbots necklace, Chanel classic flap, Ann Taylor belt

My style has evolved immensely over the years, but there are certain looks and pieces that I will always and instantly feel like “myself” in. I am uncontrollably drawn to pencil shapes, pearls, drapey blouses, tweed, and a little Chanel…and this outfit embodies it all. Looking back on my first few posts (here and here), I embraced these pieces and aspired to channel this look even when I was clueless about putting together outfits.

If asked today about my signature style, I can answer with confidence (after years of experimentation and cultivating my wardrobe) that it’s comprised of:
– a combination of classic and feminine looks
– figure-defining but not revealing silhouettes
– a variety of soft textures; and
– a mix of splurge pieces and bargain finds
peachcream2 I’ve tried to “get more” out of my dresses before by wearing them as a top, but the bottom part just became too uncomfortable when layered under another skirt. Inspired by the combo at the bottom of this page, I did the reverse here with a very lightweight blouse…

It was much more comfortable than the other way around, and easier to keep in place (tied a knot in the front center and tucked it in, then folded the back of the blouse under a skinny waist belt).

Splurge: Chanel taupe flap   Steal: Talbots outlet pearl necklace (a longtime fave for $11)

I am a bit obsessed with these cropped tweed jackets from Uniqueen (see full review here) but I do want to note a few things:

– This jacket definitely runs smaller than that of Western brands, however sizing appears to be slightly inconsistent. A “Small” is equivalent to an XXS-XS in American sizing or H&M; 2-4. I heard from the owner that several ladies were disappointed that the jacket was too small, so I want to reiterate this. As for consistency…I tried on a total of three jackets – two fit me perfectly (except for sleeve length) and one was too big. I expressed my concerns to the owner and she has asked her factory to be very careful when hand-cutting the pieces, however I suspect there may still be some inconsistencies.

– I initially suggested simply pulling out the tinsel-like metallic trim. That worked well for me on my first jacket, but I yanked them out too hastily for this one and you may see that the edges of the jacket are now curved up. They won’t flatten back down no matter how much I pull on or iron them. If you want to remove the sparkly trim, please, please do so carefully at your own risk.

– The “Cream Ivory” is not ivory – it is a stark white. I have gotten a lot of wear out of this with spring/summer colors, neutrals, as well as denim.

– Last but not least, there has been such a response from you guys for Uniqueen tweed jackets that I asked if they’d consider some reader giveaways. They agreed, so please stayed tuned for a chance to win one of your choice.


Readers – What do you consider to be your signature style?

90 thoughts on “Signature Style: Classic tweed, pencil dress, and pearls

  • Sabrina June 21, 2012 at 11:48 pm

    I always adore your classic style, Jean! A long time admirer 🙂 I love the tweed jacket in particular; it seems like such a lady-like staple for a wardrobe!


  • newpetite June 21, 2012 at 11:56 pm

    The colors work so well on you. Love the whole signature style! Cant wait for the giveaway!

  • Lauren @ thepearshape June 22, 2012 at 12:01 am

    Absolutely adore your classic style, it is very reminiscent of my own. Love the mix of splurge pieces with more affordable options. And of course your Chanel is enviable!

    My style is very classic, with clean lines. I love bright colors but most of all, I look to flatter my pearshaped figure 🙂

  • Jyoti June 22, 2012 at 12:22 am

    I think I'm still trying to figure that one out! I would totally agree with your assessment– your style is very much 'Chanel' — classic and feminine!

  • Lauren June 22, 2012 at 12:28 am

    Beautiful look, as always. I very much admire your classic style–it's something I aspire to as soon as I get a job that would allow it (ie, anything but a humanities grad student!) 🙂

  • Anonymous June 22, 2012 at 12:32 am

    Did you just tuck the sleeves in or had it tailored? And i have to agree on the inconstancy on the size of those tweed.

  • deb June 22, 2012 at 12:32 am

    Hello! I was wondering if you could show us how you tucked your blouse into your dress…I looked at your older post with the green dress where you also did this and would love to learn this genius technique! 🙂 Thanks, Jean!

  • Anonymous June 22, 2012 at 12:32 am

    I love love love your outfit! Especially the matching belt, bag, and necklace! How do you tuck in your shirt so that it doesn't look weird/baggy?

    Lisa =)

  • Anonymous June 22, 2012 at 12:36 am

    I have followed your blogs for a long time. I really like your style.

    I am also a petite asian. The Uniqueen jacket looks very nice. I wanna get one for my spring/summer closet. I like the cream ivory and lemon. Which color is better? Thank you. 🙂

  • Suzie Q June 22, 2012 at 12:55 am

    I love the classic feminine style and this outfit is gorgeous! I love the soft pink color of the dress and how you paired it with taupe pieces. Thanks for the heads up on your experience with pulling out the tinsel trim. I was debating whether I should pull it out on mine but I think I'll just hold off for now 🙂

    Suzie Q

  • Genie June 22, 2012 at 1:01 am

    I've always looked to you for classic and flattering outfits, seriously, I love visiting your blog for info, and inspo. My signature style…hmm…I love experimenting with a lot of different textures and items, that wouldn't necessarily go together in the first place, but a lot of the time I'd say very girly, and quirky. My range can go anywhere from combat boots to nude pumps to crazy prints, so right now I can't really say but I do believe that fashion is an opportunity to do what you feel is good every morning even if it isn't necessarily your norm.


  • SME June 22, 2012 at 1:18 am

    I was wondering what blush and lipstick are you using? I love the colors!

  • Michelle June 22, 2012 at 1:34 am

    This looks great Jean! I still need to try the blouse over a dress look. Not something to do in Vegas during the summer, but maybe once it Oct/Nov hits! 🙂

    I am looking forward to the giveaway!

  • jenn~the stylish housewife June 22, 2012 at 1:51 am

    i am always stumped when people ask me what my style is. i am a bit of everything really. i will try *almost* any trend. love boho chi and feminine pieces…but i'm not afraid of edgy looks either. i always like to ask people how they think i dress and most of the time their first response is feminine. i am definitely more comfortable in a dress than pants. and now i'm rambling! btw, you look adorable.

    xoxo, jenn
    the stylish housewife

  • Ping June 22, 2012 at 1:54 am

    Jean, this is very you and such a nice classic look. I love those pumps, I think AT made something similar. I should have gotten it when it was available since Im too cheap for CLs. LoL.

  • Martina June 22, 2012 at 1:57 am

    very classic!

  • Kristi June 22, 2012 at 4:58 am

    I love this look! So classy. Those Louboutins are gorgeous! I have such a difficult time finding small CLs on ebay for a decent price.

  • Riani Irawan June 22, 2012 at 5:52 am

    I love the way you style your hair 😀

  • VieLondon June 22, 2012 at 6:12 am

    Beautiful and elegant style! The jacket is gorgeous x

  • Natasha Fatah June 22, 2012 at 6:20 am

    You definitely know your style. I seldom see you in a an outfit that doesn't fit into the description you've given. I love your necklace!

    ~Natasha Fatah~
    ~Natasha Fatah~

  • Felicia Tan June 22, 2012 at 6:36 am

    i love your style, so feminine and classy x
    loving the white and pink hues xxx

  • Maria DaintyandDecadent June 22, 2012 at 6:44 am

    I love this look 🙂 Such great style and class!


  • Jane June 22, 2012 at 7:22 am

    Jean: My signature style is not that dissimilar to yours, which is why I enjoy your blog so much. I too prefer figure-outlining clothes, but as an "older woman," I need to be careful not to overdo it or I look ridiculous. Even though an old boyfriend told me once that I look like I'm sampling paints, I usually wear dark or neutral slacks for everyday, and an interesting top — maybe knit, maybe a woven blouse, maybe a jacket, maybe a sweater. I'm finding, though, that it's no longer about the item for me — it's all about the fit.

    Question: Do you get your Chanel bags off eBay? I'm coveting one of them very much.

  • alanis June 22, 2012 at 7:53 am

    Wow I love this look so much! Very classy and soft. <3

    Greetings from Germany! /

  • Kimberly June 22, 2012 at 7:53 am

    So ladylike & pretty – these neutral/blush tones are gorgeous on your skin! I think my signature style is definitely classic & feminine, but I'm occasionally drawn towards more modern styles too. 🙂

  • ♥ Natalie June 22, 2012 at 8:05 am

    I love this, you look beautiful. <3


  • Annabelle June 22, 2012 at 8:20 am

    I've never been able to bring myself to do the using the dress as a top thing for that exact reason — it feels so bulky!

    I've always loved your classic, ladylike style. I myself tend to like tailored and elegant, but with a little more rocker-chick edge — a little more leather than tweed!

  • Anonymous June 22, 2012 at 8:27 am

    Hi Jean, can you tell us the makeup products that you use? Thnx!

  • Anonymous June 22, 2012 at 8:32 am

    wud luv a more detailed tutorial on how to tuck in the blouse. Thanks!

  • TaraMixandMatch June 22, 2012 at 8:45 am

    You are gorgeous Jean, love that blazer!

  • Always Maylee June 22, 2012 at 9:29 am

    You always look so classy and elegant, I just love it. My style is probably very similar to yours, but I'm a bit more casual with my looks. I adore that tweed jacket!

    xo, Yi-chia

  • magazyn o modzie June 22, 2012 at 10:04 am

    Perfect look!
    Love it

  • joan @ the baloney bug June 22, 2012 at 10:10 am

    Love it! And your hair looks amazing 🙂

  • June 22, 2012 at 10:23 am

    I always love your outfits. Very wearable and so lovely.

  • Jessica Broyles June 22, 2012 at 11:14 am

    Love this look – great colors, and that necklace is perfect!

  • Janki June 22, 2012 at 11:44 am

    I love this look! It's classic and cute without being too much. I am a total dork when it comes to "faking a fit" ( tm Kelly). Would you be willing to do an idiots guide with step by step pics of how you scrunch sleeves, tuck shirts into belts/dresses, etc? I like that your wardrobe doesn't have to be big to be useful!

  • June 22, 2012 at 12:56 pm

    This outfit is so “Extra Petite” =) That’s why I love your blog. You always stay true to your signature style even though it’s fun to try new trends from time to time. I'm always inspired when I see you wearing old pieces in a new way. You look so fresh and radiant in these photos.

  • Anonymous June 22, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    I'm 1950's, modern, casual:
    On weekends, I wear ankle-length pants with keds and boat-neck tops and crew tees) and a cardigan if necessary.
    For work, I prefer A-Line skirts, peep-toe heels or wedges, versatile tops and cardigans.

  • The Little Dust Princess June 22, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    I really like the neutral palette of this outfit, Jean. This is definitely a classic look for you and you wear it so well!

    I love the idea of using the dress as a skirt instead of a top. I did it a few PFCs ago and received a lot of great feedback on it. A lot of readers emailed me asking for a more thorough description and it was a struggle trying to describe how I did it. I just saw an Anon above request a tutorial from you. That would be great for those who still don't understand!

  • sophié June 22, 2012 at 2:19 pm

    my signature look: for several years now – I 'live' in skinny jeans, 100% silk blouses (preference for peter pan collars) and cashmere cardis in various shades of grey. faux Pearls and hermes kelly cuffs. I just find this an easy way of dressing, though the silk tops are pretty high maintenance. Nothing is expensive, mostly ZARA, Uniqlo and top shop. I like your signature look too – well actually I like most of your looks. I ve asked you this before if you can do something on handbags, what is a good rounded collection. THANK YOU again love your posts!

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