What to Wear to a Graduation Party

Graduation is right around the corner!  Many years has passed since I graduated, so this edition of What to Wear is written by guest writer, Lisa Griffin.

Soon you will be spending your last days at your university or college. Besides final tests and thoughts about your future perspectives, it means a memorable party! Are you excited about the day when everyone can forget about assignments and devote attention to choosing dresses for the graduation ceremony? All the seniors impatiently wait for this major event. Staying in trend might be difficult in everyday life, but when it comes to graduation, it’s even harder. So, what shall you wear to look fabulous? Continue reading

How to Pack the Ultimate Capsule Wardrobe for Travel

Many times while traveling, things do not go as planned and my trip is extended (cancelled flights, opportunity to stay longer, whatever).  My first reaction was to add a couple new items to my wardrobe (yay, excuse to go shopping), then I learned the secret to extend my original wardrobe for another week (or more). I discovered how to pack the ultimate capsule wardrobe for the most mix and match options with a limited amount of luggage.  A little preparation while packing can give you loads of outfit combinations during your travels!

I spent many years traveling for work, and many more years traveling for fun.  Here are a few of my top packing tips to build the ultimate travel capsule wardrobe.
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Capsule Wardrobe 6 Month Progress Report

If you are new to the Capsule Wardrobe concept – start here.

capsule-wardrobe-6-month-progress-reportA little over 6 months ago, I set out to Build a Capsule Wardrobe.  My plan was to assemble a new wardrobe by downsizing my already overflowing closet without buying anything new.  Here is my 6 month progress report on Building a Capsule Wardrobe through reduction.

So, how did I do?  Well, I reduced many clothes from my closet.  My plan to not buy anything new did not work out quite the way I expected.

How did my Closet get Out of Control?

I started to become aware that I was shopping for entertainment.  This was not just for clothes, my entertainment shopping extended to shoes, furniture, office supplies, make-up, and even cleaning products!  I realized as I would put new purchases away, that I already owned several of that same item (4 dresses in the exact shade of blue, 2 still with tags).  Hmm, I started to consider that maybe I do not need any more of those.

The real ah-ha moment came when we prepared for a 3,000 mile move. This was a closet purge on steroids!  I donated bags and bags of clothes and boxes of household items to charity.  I finally acknowledged my Shoe Addiction, and focused on building a Capsule Wardrobe through reduction.  I started with an arbitrary goal to get rid of 5 items per month.

What Worked?

Shopping trips became more focused and less frequent.  I had a current inventory of stuff that I had just moved, so there was no “mistake” buying something that I already owned.  We kept a running list of needs/wants, then only bought off the list on our planned shopping trips.  No impulse shopping, or browsing for entertainment, resulted in less time spent shopping.  We had exactly what we needed (plus a few planned splurges), less clutter around the house, and more money in the bank!  Continue reading

What is a Capsule Wardrobe and How do I Build One?

Capsule Wardrobe is the hot phrase in fashion right now.  I just completed a 3,000 mile move (and corresponding closet purge), so the Capsule Wardrobe is on my mind.  I need to understand what is a Capsule Wardrobe?  Will this work for me? How do I build one?

Capsule wardrobe is a term coined by Susie Faux, the owner of a London boutique called “Wardrobe” in the 1970s. According to Faux, a capsule wardrobe is a collection of a few essential items of clothing that don’t go out of fashion, such as skirts, trousers, and coats, which can then be augmented with seasonal pieces.

Capsule wardrobes apparently have been around for awhile.  It is claimed to be a practical way to manage what is in your closet, deciding what to purge, and what to add.

what-is-a-capsule-wardrobe-and-how-do-i-build-one

Without realizing, I pack for travel using the capsule wardrobe method on a very small scale.  One week’s travel will consist of 2-3 dresses (casual or work attire), jeans, black dress slacks or skirt, one swim suit, black yoga pants, and matching colorful/print shirts.  Shoes to wear during travel, pack another pair of shoes that match everything, and flip flops (to wear around the hotel room, spa services, hotel pool, etc).  For colder weather, add a coat and/or 1-2 cardigan sweaters for layering.

Now how do I apply this to my entire wardrobe?

My Style Sister, Lesley from Working Look, hosts some great videos and practical advice.  Her three principles of defining a Capsule Wardrobe are: Continue reading

What to Wear for a Job Interview

8 Tips for Preparing Your Wardrobe the Day Before an Interview

  1. Pick an appropriate outfit based on the industry and your location.  Women are usually spot on with a skirt or slacks and nice blouse paired with a jacket.  A general rule for men is a suit and tie, but there are times when a button down shirt and slacks are more appropriate.  Ask your friends in the company or related fields for specifics.  When in doubt, it is better to be overdressed than look too casual. 
  2. Wear clean, comfortable shoes.  Any new shoes should be worn around the house, or rub a little sandpaper on the soles, to avoid slipping.
  3. Try on your outfit a day or two before the interview. Remove any price tags, pocket stitching, pet hair or loose thread.  Make sure your outfit is clean, wrinkle-free, and ready to wear the night before to avoid any surprises.
  4. Make-up, jewelry, and accessories – less is more! Keep it simple so the interviewer is focused on how prepared and confident you are, not counting all of your bracelets and rings.
  5. Get a haircut.  This may involve a drastic change in preparation for your first “real” job interview, or simply a trim to clean up your existing style.  Either way, your hair should be healthy and appropriate for your profession.  This is a good time to touch-up highlights, deep condition, and a little bit of pampering to get you interview ready.
  6. Step up your nail care. Finger nails should be clean and trimmed. Skip wild or distracting polish.  
  7. Your bag/briefcase situation. In most cases you will not need your laptop.  Bring several copies of your resume, and school related projects or portfolio of work in a clean, simple bag, or a plain file folder.  Either way, keep your items to a minimum.  Unless otherwise directed, your bag(s) should be placed at your feet, out of sight, during the interview.
  8. Put on your best SMILE.

When you get the job, here are some tips for What to Wear on your First Day.