Cobalt Skirt Remixed & Banana Republic Octavio Woven Heels


In case any of you were considering this skirt for Ann Taylor’s next sale, I wanted to show how versatile the color is cross-seasons. Last week I wore it amidst winter gloom, but for spring months I can see it with delicate neutrals and gold jewelry. The lighting in my room is all over the place, so I can’t get an accurate photo of the color. Please don’t rely on my pictures for the true color of this skirt.

Thrifted bracelet (resized by my handy jeweler),  Reversible Resin Necklace c/o Amrita Singh


Unfortunately you will all have to see this blouse in many more posts this year. It’s hands-down my favorite Fall purchase and I’m so thankful reader R.L. sold hers to me at the sale price of $20. It’s a regular size XS, but I DIY slimmed it like so. My coworker has banned me from wearing my multitude of Gap nude blouses to work again.

On a separate note, BR upped their online discount to 30% with BRTAKE30, good until tomorrow 10/31 at noon. Be sure to go through eBates (referral) for 10% cash back as well. Here are some pics that I took months ago of the Octavio Woven Peep Toe Heel. I tried these on in-store and loved them – the neutral shoe and platform were so elongating on my legs. I’ve had them in my cart ever since, waiting for a lower price, but now the time has come I can’t bite the bullet because I’m in full-on winter mode! Will I regret this? Bought, just to “try on for size.” ; )

If you live in a warmer climate, I recommend these shoes to make your legs look long and lean. The leather felt soft and the chunky heel seemed comfy. I think they run about half a size small. I’m wearing a 6 in these photos, and thought a 5.5 would be perfect (for reference, I wear a solid 5 in Ann Taylor).

Octavio Woven Peep Toe Heel – only 5 and 5.5’s are left online, check stores for sz 6 and up.


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  1. can i purchase the shoes from you? loveee!!

    Posted 11.2.11 Reply
  2. Samantha wrote:

    I just love the neutral and blue colorblock! It looks fantastic on you! And thanks for the shoe tip! :o)

    Posted 11.1.11 Reply
  3. ooh, you should keep these shoes. love a chunky heel.

    Posted 11.1.11 Reply
  4. Christine wrote:

    Thank you, Carla Krae and PetiteAsianGirl!
    I just re-looked at my shoes and I think I can stand to go a half size down on most of them for them to fit snugly. You'll laugh, but I think I was subconsciously going by my childhood…my thrifty Asian parents always bought my shoes too big so I would grow into them (which, by the way, never worked because I wore them out before I grew into them) and I totally internalized their definition of "fitting well enough"! You're definitely right about the difference tights make, too.

    Posted 11.1.11 Reply
  5. Elli wrote:

    OMG gorgeous shoes, and I LOVE the blouse. It looks super soft and the colour is beautiful. amazing outfit <3
    xoxo elli-

    Posted 11.1.11 Reply
  6. I saw a similar shade of a skirt while thrifting. I couldn't think of what to wear with it besides black or white so I left it. Also, it wasn't of the best material. I like how you style it though so if it's still there, I'll be sure to snap it up. Thank you!

    Your bracelet seems similar to the one I thrifted in the summer.

    Posted 11.1.11 Reply
  7. @GayathriLucky for you I think the snow will melt by next week and we're supposed to have "lovely" 50-60 degree weather! In the winter I wear black tights (get mine at H&M;, 40den for partial opacity), black heels, and then you can wear a regular suit plus a coat. Bring black flats if you think you'll be walking around.

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  8. @Phuong Yes it sucks to have unlined skirts ride against tights. I wear a slip but I need to alter it down because it's bunchy right now. I wonder if there are tips and tricks out there like rubbing a dryer sheet against tights or something, I'll scour Google : )

    @1to24 Thanks for the tip! I tweeted it so hopefully someone will score them.

    @KB It must be so tough in NZ! I don't know if Zara ships internationaly but their juniors TRF line runs small and I can wear some of the size S blazers. Also I don't know if ASOS ships to NZ but their US petite 1 or UK petite 4 is very small.

    @ellenglo There's no style name on them but they're this shoe:;=j&q;=&esrc;=s&source;=productsearch&cd;=2&ved;=0CG8Q9gIwAQ&url;—Black%26pfid%3DDNA02765&ctbm;=shop&ei;=vUevTp3XNuTF0AG-7tCtAQ&usg;=AFQjCNG5ACuDe9VNngZ4A53Wb9ca7zFqHw

    There's no numerical sizing, either! Mine are a sz S and fits like a sz 6, I'd say.

    @Christine The photo is slightly deceiving because when I tried on the 6's, my foot could move around a few millimeters. I don't like any room for movement at all in my shoes, unless they are meant to be worn with socks. For shoes that I expect to wear with nylons or black tights, I want them even snugger, otherwise the tights would cause feet to slip right out of shoes. I used to wear all my work clothes too big as well!

    @Anonymous I stitched it in using my sewing machine pretty much following those dotted lines. My tailor charged about $15 which I thought was too much. Unfortunately my sewing doesn't look as nice as professional tailors from the inside!

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  9. Gayathri wrote:

    Do you have any recommendations on how to dress business professional in the cold / snow? I'm from the West Coast, but I need to wear a suit in Boston next week and maybe walk around a bit. I don't know where to start though with shoes and even tights and clothes. ThankS!

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  10. @Anonymous Nice! I hope they work out for you! I go to Hemmingway Tailors all the way in Belmont, MA, but I don't think they are cheap! If you search my site for Hemmingway or tailor on the sidebar I usually list the prices I pay for alterations from them. I'm trying to do simple alterations myself and only bring quality items or stuff with lining to them.

    @Anna If you're talking about button up dress shirts, those are the devil for certain body types. That's precisely why I stick to drapey polyester or silk blouses versus cotton or poplin button ups to avoid boxiness or bunchiness. Knits work too!

    @lin Hi Lin I've only tried on the BR trench from one or two years ago so I don't remember anything about the fit. Many ladies were happy with Ann Taylor's khaki trench in petite sizing, but it's only restocked occasionally online. Maybe look for it in stores and see how the two compare?

    @Michelle LOL! Omigosh, I'm currently at about 2 per week but I have to hide them under jackets from my coworker.

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  11. Jacklyn wrote:

    you have a great style! I´m petite too! 🙂

    Jacklyn ☮❤ from Aly´s Book

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  12. Anonymous wrote:

    How did you do the DIY slimming? In the link you provided it said you took the shirt to your tailor to do it.

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  13. Carla Krae wrote:


    Christine, a shoe should be comfortable when you put it on. Shouldn't rub your heel, squeeze your toes, or let your toes hang over the end. Shouldn't fall off or dig anywhere.

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  14. Love all the pieces of this outfit Jean! AND I love the BR shoes! Too bad they're out of my size (and outta my price range for shoes!) LOL

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  15. Elsie Jael wrote:

    LOVE those woven heels, Jean! I'm a sucker for anything with a platform and a wooden heel. My friend and I love your blog and even though we're not petite, we find your young professional work style so inspirational 🙂 We would really appreciate it if you would support us and follow back! Thanks!

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  16. Christine wrote:

    Hi! Just a question about shoe fit…how do you know if a shoe fits or not? I ask because you mention that you're wearing a size 6 Banana Republic in those photos, but need to go down to a 5.5. From the pictures, they look like they fit how my shoes fit…am I wearing my shoes too big?
    This will make me sound stupid, but for years I wore ALL my clothes too big because I never realized how they were supposed to fit! It was after reading blogs like yours that I realized, OH, skirts are supposed to sit on my waist, not hips? Shoulders of jackets are not supposed to be halfway to my elbows? Haha. <--GREW UP A TOMBOY, only now learning about clothes.

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  17. ellenglo wrote:

    hi extrapetite!
    what a cute outfit! 🙂 I saw an adorable blazer at f21 but it was tan and i was like.. oh no, what do i do with this?! i want black! but in seeing your post, i'm feeling more inspired 😀

    btw, what are the dav rainboots that you have called? i'm having a rainy shoe dilemma!! :/

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  18. JJ wrote:

    Loving this outfit – you've matched and coordinated the colors so well. Also, I adore your chain bracelet, it's so pretty!

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  19. Octavio you said? It's a very cute pair of shoes. oh wow, it's 10:52AM and the shoe is only available in a size 11. Missed it. Hopefully it'll be restocked.

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  20. What a pretty outfit! Love the mix of colours. I heart nude shoes!

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  21. Those shoes look so nice for summer! Wish the peeptoe was a little bit smaller tho 🙂

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  22. love the color of your skirt! and your jewelry is sooo pretty!

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  23. KB wrote:

    Beautiful outfit 🙂 I've been reading your blog for a while now and its really lovely BUT I was wondering whether you could do a post on petite friendly stores with international shipping?? The choice for petite clothing in NZ is very limited and a lot of extra money is spent at the tailor. If you know of any it would be a great help! Thanks 🙂 Kat

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  24. Very color coordinated, I see! I really like the necklace and shoes. 🙂

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  25. Mimi wrote:

    cobalt is now one of my favorite colors! it's sooo beautiful! 😀

    <3, Mimi

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  26. 1to24 wrote:

    Decided to check out these shoes on the Canadian BR site – they are available online and size 5 is available but they are even cheaper than the US site before sale price at $49.99. Not sure if there is a coupon code that can be applied but thought I would post.;=1&pid;=832474&scid;=832474013

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  27. I'm loving everything about this look! So much i'm featuring it on my site this week! Fantastic job!

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  28. Phuong wrote:

    Hey Jean!

    I love this skirt! I haven't gotten it because I wish it was lined. I'm not a fan of wearing unlined skirts in the winter with tights because they cling to each other sometimes for me. Do you have a solution?

    Thanks for all your posts! I love them!!

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  29. Wow, the color of the skirt looks completely different in these pics vs the post a few days ago. It's such a pretty blue!

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  30. Megan wrote:

    That blouse looks just like the neutral bow blouse from Gap that you love! I'm guessing the AT one isn't sold in stores or online anymore? And I am definitely going to consider that cobalt skirt for Ann Taylor's next 40% off sale… It looks perfect for spring time!!!

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  31. You look super cute. I absolutely love the shade of blue… I wear it with browns… beige-ish tones… you name it! It is the color to wear now. 🙂 I like how you coordinated the look. And those shoes… gotta get me some. lol!


    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  32. Beautiful shoes. Too bad I live in cold and rain :0( I like the color of your skirt – nice and bright.

    Posted 10.31.11 Reply
  33. lin wrote:

    jean, great color combo. i love how versatile the skirt is. now i'm regretting not purchasing the blue tweed pencil skirt i saw at the limited a couple months ago. 🙁

    i was able to go and get the BR trench i've been eyeing but they didn't have a small so i had to get it shipped to my house. how do you think BR's trench fit is compared to burberry's?

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  34. I love this color combination, Jean. Since the color of this skirt is so bold, pairing with a neutral top seems like the way to go. I can't wait to try mine on. Thank you again for thinking of me =)

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  35. Anna wrote:

    Thumbs up! One of my favorite things about your style is your ability to take a few items and make a bazillion outfits. 🙂

    I'm definitely inspired by the versatility of your nude blouse! However I just can't figure out how to get a good, clean tuck into skirts and pants. Any good tips on tucking and getting it stay throughout the day??

    Maybe its just another petite girl plight, but I I usually get a lot of bunchiness at the hips. Could this be fitting issue? I think i have a longer torso for a 00P, so the bottom of fitted shirts flare out higher than my waistline. Maybe I should stick to knits!

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  36. Anonymous wrote:

    I just bought the last 5 in the BR shoes! Also, I live in the Boston area and was wondering if you could share your recommended tailor? It seems like their prices are MUCH more reasonable than anything else I've seen. Thanks!

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  37. maggie wrote:

    love it! you really do show how versatile the cobalt blue skirt is.

    xx maggie

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  38. Darn it! I'm too late! Sz 5's are gone! When I read runs small- I said omg!!!

    I hope someone returns those shoes!

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  39. OMG! I love those shoes! It looks like only a size 5 is available 🙁 I need the extra .5, bummer!

    Btw, the blue cobalt skirt is gorgeous! I'm on a skirt ban…I have waaay too many 🙂

    xo, tasha
    twenty-something blog
    enter my Gorjana bracelet giveaway today!

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  40. Michelle wrote:

    I know what you mean…I passed up some cute summer items at the mall yesterday because I am in "winter mode" as well! Even though winter has yet to hit…I am hoping! 🙂

    You did an excellent job pairing the AT skirt with you AS necklace!! And your thrifted bracelet is amazing!! So pretty!

    You could limit yourself to no more than two nude tops per week! 🙂

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  41. Katherine wrote:

    Yes yes to the shoes!

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  42. Destinee wrote:

    I am in LOVE with those peep toe heels. OMG!

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  43. I am still waiting for that shirt to be on sale! I should've grabbed one when I bought the green one too. ARGH! 🙁

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  44. Angie wrote:

    i like the pop of blue of that gorgeous necklace with your cobalt skirt. blue is such a versatile cross-season colour, agreed!

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply
  45. Ping wrote:

    super cute! i love how the skirt matches the necklace and that the blouse matches the shoes. great color coordinating combo! for a minute i thought that was the AT overlapping placket blouse! they look very similar.

    Posted 10.30.11 Reply

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