Spring: Mint dress, neutrals + cap toe pumps


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).
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.

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.
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.
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!

Readers – Have you delved into mint and/or cap toes this spring?

90 thoughts on “Spring: Mint dress, neutrals + cap toe pumps

  • Emily April 2, 2012 at 3:34 pm

    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!

  • Anna April 2, 2012 at 3:35 pm

    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.

  • Anonymous April 2, 2012 at 4:26 pm

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

  • Di April 2, 2012 at 4:52 pm

    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.

  • alexis April 2, 2012 at 6:40 pm

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


  • Jyoti April 2, 2012 at 6:46 pm

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

  • Anonymous April 2, 2012 at 8:51 pm

    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.

  • lin April 2, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    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.

  • Jenn April 2, 2012 at 10:02 pm

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

  • Joy April 2, 2012 at 10:24 pm

    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.

  • Petite-ish April 2, 2012 at 10:45 pm

    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

  • Anonymous April 2, 2012 at 11:21 pm

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

  • Anonymous April 2, 2012 at 11:23 pm

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

  • Lisa Y. April 3, 2012 at 2:19 am

    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!

  • Kat April 3, 2012 at 3:31 am

    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!

  • SewPetiteGal April 3, 2012 at 6:16 am

    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.

  • Y. Wolfe April 3, 2012 at 11:54 am

    Found a deal for some 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!

  • Tiffany April 3, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    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!

  • sweezel April 3, 2012 at 7:10 pm

    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.

  • girlymd April 3, 2012 at 8:31 pm

    love the captoe shoes 🙂


  • Lloyd Lim April 4, 2012 at 2:16 am

    Nice * Nice * Nice

    – L

  • silhouette April 4, 2012 at 11:15 am

    amazing outfit!you look great!

  • Anonymous April 4, 2012 at 1:53 pm

    PS – you got a shout out from the Washingtonian style section

  • jas April 4, 2012 at 9:04 pm

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


  • Arts April 5, 2012 at 12:01 pm

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

    Beautiful, as usual. 🙂

  • Alyssa Pantuso April 5, 2012 at 11:14 pm

    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.


  • fashionphd April 5, 2012 at 11:39 pm

    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 🙂

  • Ana April 6, 2012 at 6:37 am

    I'm starting to really love the Uniqueen jackets because of you and Wendy 🙂
    You look great and I love the mint/green color!

  • jenn April 6, 2012 at 7:56 pm

    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?

  • Luna April 7, 2012 at 9:54 am

    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!

    Luna from the Red Pants – http://xoxoLuna.blogspot.com

  • Anonymous April 7, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    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!

  • Whitney April 11, 2012 at 2:07 pm

    You and your blog are so very lovely.

  • Sunshine April 12, 2012 at 1:09 am

    Jean! why you look so goooooddd?? 😛 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 🙁

  • faye lu May 23, 2012 at 8:17 am

    loving this classic with a twist of preppy look x

  • k June 15, 2012 at 11:00 am

    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 ..

  • shenhui1267 January 8, 2013 at 4:43 am

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

  • gaoxingru January 20, 2013 at 8:42 pm

    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.

  • shenhui1267 January 25, 2013 at 3:23 am

    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 .

  • shenhui1267 January 28, 2013 at 12:16 am

    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 .

  • sherryshen1267 February 17, 2013 at 4:27 am

    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.

Comments are closed.