Workwear: classic black ankle pants + leopard flats

fall work outfit business casual blazer black pants

Ann Taylor flats sz 5 c/o, Banana Republic pants sz 00p (shrunken), H&m blazer (similar in petite), Talbots stripe tee (similar for $30), Hermes belt, Prada bag

Several of you have requested more work outfits with flat shoes – personally I’m more of a heels girl, but can certainly be swayed by cute detailing like a feminine bow or fun print! These leopard flats from Ann Taylor were love at first sight, and are breathing new life into this outfit of old pieces. It’s actually leopard mania over in AT’s new arrivals section, so take a look if you’re looking for a heel, wedge, mule, or sandal in this same print! Use code PSST for 40% off site-wide for U.S. shoppers – other elegant pieces that will likely go fast are this scalloped sweater shell (have it in xxs regular), and this Chanel-style tweed jacket that’s back from last year (see it on me)!

leopard print bow flats fall shoes

Pearl cable bracelet love at 2 different price points: David Yurman bracelet, KJP bracelet 

Leopard print can sometimes go wrong, so I’m happy to report these have a classic tan / brown coloring in-person (the above photo is the most accurate depiction). I adore the black suede bow with black piping, and the fact that these have a tiny half inch heel to keep them from being uncomfortably flat! Like similar structured leather flats, these may need a little breaking in. They rubbed the back of my heels after the first day of wear, but nothing too bad compared to other shoes. Fit-wise, I’m usually between a size 5 and 5.5 in most brands, and always take a size 5 in Ann Taylor shoes.

how to dress professionally for work in business casual office

I give so much love to my navy ankle pants (last blogged here), but have somehow never blogged this black pair! Black is a little more stark and serious in my opinion, but oh-so-slimming and forgiving. These are a recent version of the Banana Republic sloan pants (after they changed my favorite fit, RIP). The 00 petite is roomier than before, but after blasting these through a machine wash and dry on high heat, they shrunk substantially down to size for a good fit. As always, these are labeled dry clean please shrink at your own risk, and be sure to check the dryer every so often to avoid over-shrinking!

As a new ankle pant option that might be a better fit, J.Crew just came out with a new Cameron slim crop pant in several classic colors starting in 000 petite! They look super flattering on the model (hello rear view), but that usually doesn’t translate to how something looks on me. Nevertheless, I’m eager to give them a try and will report back on the fit!

what to wear to work in the fall striped tee leopard flats

fall style office wear extra petite boston blog


47 thoughts on “Workwear: classic black ankle pants + leopard flats

  • Reply Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog August 16, 2017 at 3:22 pm

    Love the ankle pants, Jean! Especially with the fitted white blazer. Should get one myself!

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

  • Reply Michael @ Mile in My Glasses August 16, 2017 at 4:01 pm

    I love the leopard flats paired with your black and white outfit! It looks amazing! Also, love your style always Jean! You look great!

    I hope you’re having a lovely Wednesday!

  • Reply The Luxe Strategist August 16, 2017 at 4:03 pm

    I’m not half as petite as you, so I’m always in awe at how you’ve managed to make everything fit your perfectly. For me, I prefer looser fits, so it’s such a challenge to find boyfriend styles that don’t make me look super dumpy. I’ll have to go through your archives to see how you do it!

    Does anyone else find it kind of silly that there’s now a 000? I *feel* like a 0 should fit me perfectly, but even a 00 was too big in many cases. So now, I’m curious to know is the 000 will actually fit like a true 0.

    • Reply Jean | Extra Petite August 16, 2017 at 4:43 pm

      SO silly! I like European sizes since I’m consistently a 2 / 32, whereas I’m almost embarrassed to have to write out some of these U.S. vanity sizes these days. To be fair, though, J.Crew’s size 000 petite does fit smaller than what other U.S. brands offer, so I’m happy that ladies who need that rare option at least have one place to turn.

  • Reply Briana August 16, 2017 at 4:41 pm

    The leopard print goes perfectly! Such a darling look!


  • Reply Anonymous August 16, 2017 at 5:38 pm

    Yes yes yes! You read my mind! Or rather the comments that others left, but I hadn’t gotten around to! I’d been meaning to ask for this very thing. I also adore heels… but they just aren’t practical for my workplace and so I have to save them all for weekends. More of this, please! Outfits with low heels would work too, especially chunky ones.

    • Reply Jean | Extra Petite August 17, 2017 at 12:19 pm

      I love a good chunky block heel! Thanks for taking the time to share your feedback : ) xx

  • Reply Lauren Lewow August 16, 2017 at 6:10 pm

    Any recommendations for fitted T-shirts? Even regular styles are over sized so sometimes XS still look like my mom’s shirt!

    After searching for a soft, easy to roll jean jacket for months I found this and it’s super petite friendly. I ordered an XS and love it!

    • Reply Jean | Extra Petite August 17, 2017 at 12:18 pm

      Hi Lauren, I actually really love J.Crew tees! They don’t always make petite, so it might be a little long, but they carry xxs and even xxxs (xxs works just fine for me) which are pretty slim. Nordstrom also has a Caslon brand that makes petite sized tees.

      • Reply Lauren August 17, 2017 at 1:09 pm

        you’re the best!

  • Reply Carla Krae August 16, 2017 at 8:01 pm

    Hey, Jean, you’re using Mailchimp for your newsletter, correct? Since it’s likely from your following you’ll reach the subscriber threshold where Mailchimp makes you pay for the service, I wanted to let you know Mailerlite is a cheaper service with ultimately less hassles once you’re in the pay realm.

    • Reply Jean | Extra Petite August 17, 2017 at 12:18 pm

      Thanks for the tip, Carla! Yes I am currently paying for Mailchimp.

  • Reply Michelle August 16, 2017 at 9:40 pm

    Hi Jean, Love this outfit (as usual!) It’s fun but still office appropriate! I’m on the hunt for the Constance belt but am having a hard time deciding on the sizing – 70, 75… or bigger for more versatility? I really like how you were able to wear it a little lower on the waist with pants but have also seen posts pairing the belt with dresses. Any recommendations for your size? I tend to fair well with similar sizing, so your posts are a total lifesaver! TIA!

    • Reply Jean | Extra Petite August 17, 2017 at 12:17 pm

      Hi Michelle! You won’t regret the Constance – definitely one of my favorite accessories for sprucing up plain outfits! So the only one that I purchased “sized” was a vintage one sized 65, and it’s so snug I can only wear it high at my natural waist. The others I bought from the Hermes store, where they never had a small size available so they just trim the belt down to size for you based on exactly how short you want it (so unfortunately I don’t have an exact label size to share!). I made sure the belt was cut long enough to wear by my lower waist with pants, and I had extra holes punched so I could also wear it high at the waist.

  • Reply Amanda August 16, 2017 at 10:18 pm

    Love how you paired the stripes with the leopard print. So chic! Xx

  • Reply Jo August 16, 2017 at 10:50 pm

    Promo code does not work 🙁

    • Reply Jean | Extra Petite August 17, 2017 at 12:14 pm

      Are you international? AT codes are limited to the U.S. only, sadly! I tested the code yesterday and also updated it with today’s!

  • Reply J August 16, 2017 at 11:05 pm

    I’ve missed your work wear posts so much! More, please!!

  • Reply Deasy August 16, 2017 at 11:45 pm

    This look is so chic and clean. I really like it! Especially with the pop of fun in those shoes, hehe.

    • Reply Bea August 17, 2017 at 8:55 am

      I agree with you, the pop of the shoes is so fun and great!

  • Reply Elizabeth August 17, 2017 at 1:43 am

    Thank you so much for sharing this great post, Jean! <3 🙂 It can sometimes get a little hard to dress for the office on a daily basis, but really enjoyed your trips on this out! It's good to change things up every once in awhile!

    XO, Elizabeth

  • Reply Helen August 17, 2017 at 2:08 am

    This is such a cute outfit for work! I love those shoes and the white blazer adds a nice pop of color!


  • Reply Claire August 17, 2017 at 3:43 am

    Hi Jean, love thid outfit but again am sad by how readers outside the US cannot seem to access the Express website. Is it possible at all to help find out why? I would do it myself but I cannot even access any of their pages. Much appreciated.

    • Reply Jean | Extra Petite August 17, 2017 at 12:09 pm

      Claire – that’s so frustrating! And you’re definitely not the first to experience that. I’ve reached out to them about this and will keep you posted! xx

      • Reply Claire August 18, 2017 at 8:50 am

        Hi Jean, thank you so so much! Would love to be able to shop at Express after admiring so many of their lovely pieces on your blog!

  • Reply Aude August 17, 2017 at 4:21 am

    Oh yes ! More work outfit with flats, please ! This one is such a win because it’s elegant AND easy to recreate ! Thank you Jean !

    • Reply Jean | Extra Petite August 17, 2017 at 12:21 pm

      Thanks, Aude! I was hesitant to post this outfit because it’s actually TOO simple and basic … but it’s one of my go-to looks when I’m in a hurry (slim black pants solve all problems, lol!) so I’m happy you like it! xx

  • Reply Ray August 17, 2017 at 6:35 am

    I love that you paired this outfit with flats.. I like comfortable feet.

  • Reply Rachelle August 17, 2017 at 6:46 am

    These flats are adorable, so love this look.


  • Reply Bea August 17, 2017 at 8:55 am

    I really want this outfit for myself! Love it!

  • Reply Linna August 17, 2017 at 10:11 am

    Gorgeous look! I love that you paired your outfit with flats 🙂 I don’t have a white blazer but after seeing you model it, I think I could be persuaded!

  • Reply Anamarie August 17, 2017 at 11:07 am

    Hi Jean, may you share a little more how you shrank the Ann Taylor textured open jacket (the Chanel-style open jacket)? Method similar to your J Crew crop pant shrinking description? Machine wash (cold) in normal wash cycle?? And then into the dryer high heat and check on it from time to time?? The jacket looks really nice on you, especially post-shrunk. I am tempted in purchasing and try shrinking it to achieve the “tailored” look that you showed in your post.


    And I can’t wait to hear from you upon J Crew 000petite pants. High 5 to size EU size 32, which is quite difficult to find true 32 in the States.

    • Reply Jean | Extra Petite August 17, 2017 at 12:12 pm

      Hi Anamarie! Yes, I always wash in cold pre-shrinking, but for the jacket I did delicate cycle in a mesh bag (I love the one from Nordstrom for the size and quality). I then dried it on high heat, but I really emphasize to do so at your own risk, because I’d feel terrible if you damaged any garments based on my recommendation! (The jacket is listed as hand wash cold, line dry)

      I actually received the current version of this jacket from AT to try on and compare. The fit is boxier by nature due to the style, but it’s actually not too bad pre-shrinking like I remembered last year’s to be (or maybe I gained a few lbs!). I’ll include measurements and do a comparison with my shrunken one soon.

      • Reply SJ August 18, 2017 at 5:30 am

        Hi Jean, do you also have any washing tips for stretching clothes? I almost thought drying on high heat stretches but I guess I’ve been wrong all along!

        Thanks heaps for all your helpful tips.

  • Reply Katie August 17, 2017 at 12:01 pm

    Love love LOOOVE this outfit! So cute on you!

    xo, Katie

  • Reply Pam August 17, 2017 at 1:39 pm

    Def needed some work outfit inspo!
    Loved this entire combo♥

  • Reply Khloe August 17, 2017 at 3:43 pm

    Simply speechless,you look absolutely gorgeous, the style suits you perfectly. I am in awe, great outfit!


  • Reply Joling August 17, 2017 at 4:37 pm

    Love the whole outfit! And these shoes are so cute!

    xo, Joling

  • Reply V August 17, 2017 at 5:21 pm

    Hi Jean,
    First off I just love your blog,. so I really like blouses from Loft /Ann Taylor /H&M and BR but I find that even the petite is too long to tuck into skirts. Have any suggestions?

  • Reply Shannon Mahaney August 17, 2017 at 9:14 pm

    I love my Banana Republic Sloan pants! I too shrunk them in the dryer so they would fit just right.

    Those leopard flats are adorable! I practically live in flats for work.

  • Reply Doreen's Style Diary August 18, 2017 at 12:25 pm

    The bow tie on these flats are adorable. I haven’t bought shoes from AT so looks like this is going to be my first purchase.

  • Reply Serena August 19, 2017 at 10:33 am

    I absolutely love this outfit! Those shoes look gorgeous. I could see myself wearing this! xx

  • Reply Mizeats August 19, 2017 at 4:22 pm

    I love how you made this office outfit really cute by adding the leopard shoes, Jean! I love my BR Sloan pants! Great recommendation, as always!!

  • Reply Joie Gahum August 20, 2017 at 11:03 pm

    The leopard prints definitely add style and interest to the whole outfit. I wonder what brand the shoes are? Would you go for something as daring as Cicihot shoes for this kind of outfit?

  • Reply Officiallychic1 August 22, 2017 at 10:59 am

    I’ve got to get those animal print flats! They are adorable! Love the way you styled them.

  • Reply Janice August 23, 2017 at 7:27 pm

    Thank you for sharing the bracelet info – I have been looking for a new pearl bracelet that will adjust for my small wrist . I just received mine from Kiel James Patrick and its perfect.

  • Reply M August 25, 2017 at 11:19 pm

    Did the pants shrink in the hips and waist? They are a little long but fit me perfectly in the hips/waist. Would you recommend I just get them hemmed?

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