When I first started building a “grownup” wardrobe, a pair of black pants and a black pencil skirt were amongst the first additions. Over the years, though, these pieces became overlooked as my closet expanded to more playful prints and colors (guilty of always reaching for blush or navy!). Call it a return to basics, if you will, but I recently found myself re-inspired by these simplistic pieces. Black pants are the foundation of this recent outfit, and a black pencil skirt here completes this timeless, professional look!
Today’s post is in partnership with Ann Taylor – U.S. shoppers can use code GETMORE to save up to 40% off your purchase! Several of you have asked for more conservative office outfits, suitable for business formal dress codes and professional networking events. This look fits the bill, however as an important note, I’d swap in a skirt without a front slit (like this seasonless stretch pencil skirt) for work wear. To help save on costly dry cleaning, each piece in today’s post -including the skirt suggested above- is either hand or machine-washable!
The sweater shell, elevated
I hope some of you were able to grab this darling scalloped sweater shell after my recent post! It exceeded my expectations, as I didn’t realize the scallops have a thin contrast trim which makes it look more expensive. It’s so cute paired with all different skirts (mini, flared, pencil) that I’m tempted to get the navy as well – based on the reviews, it sounds like the navy one has a white contrast trim. Unfortunately this top doesn’t come in petites sizing. The xxs regular is a longer hip-length on me, thus is best suited for tucking into bottoms.
The timeless tweed jacket
I first featured this jacket a year ago, and have since worn it with skinny jeans, boyfriend jeans (with a slouchy tee), trousers, ankle pants – you name it. I usually add a brooch and a pile of pearl necklaces to give it that iconic Chanel look. Ann Taylor sent me the current version (pictured in this post) which I compared to last year’s. I shrunk mine last year in the machine dryer on high heat (do so at your own risk), and noted that this year’s version off-the-rack measures the same as my old one post-shrinking. It’s still a boxy fit by nature, so perhaps try a size down if you want that little cropped jacket look. Note this is unlined, the pockets are functional (you need to snip the threads tacking them shut), and the inside edges are piped in a black trim.
Measurements of jacket in xxs petite: 13″ across the shoulders, 16″ across the armpits, 20″ sleeves (bracelet-length), 20″ total length.
The classic black skirt
This one has a twist with the slit in the front – it’s on the sultry side, so I’d stitch it shut about halfway to make it work-appropriate. It was hard to capture in photos, but this particular skirt has a ridged texture fabric, which stayed wrinkle-free after a full day of wear! As with most of my AT bottoms, I had 2″ taken in so that it’d sit higher up on my waistline.
If you need additional pieces for the buy-more-save-more deal, I always turn to their jewelry section! This knot lariat necklace has several great reviews, pearlized stud earrings can add an elegant touch to any outfit, and this metal bangle is a slimmer version of my statement cuff from there (bendable to fit small wrists). From the new arrivals section, also check out this floral swing top which I just saw on a friend and thought it was very cute (makes a good piece for layering under blazers and cardigans)!
Thank you to Ann Taylor for partnering on this post.