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Pretty n’ Casual in Black and White

July 22, 2011

Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of research on how Kate’s style has evolved over the past several years. She’s gone from a college girl to career woman to the upper echlon of class, style and decorum.

Me? I’m still suck in the career woman phase. Sigh. In the States — particularly Austin, Texas — you can pretty much get away with any type of dress unless you work for the government or finance. For those guys, that means men must have their Good ‘ol Boys cowboy boots to go with their suits and women must have conservative powersuits, pantyhose and close-toed heels. No peep-toe action for these ladies!

But for everyone else, your work style is an extension of your professional brand. And using Kate as my fashion muse gives off the feeling of, “I come up with awesome ideas and concepts for work that are fit for royalty. RESPECT.” So here’s a look at what inspired me this week:

We’ve already talked about a majority of these outfits and my attempt to recreate the navy look on the far left. This collage of Kate style is a great evolution of how her style has changed over the years (from 2009 to present). Then I took all of these looks to make a “Jenni” version that would be work appropriate, yet casual enough for everyday wear. So let’s break it down!

Honestly, let’s start with these freaking awesome spectator-esque heels I scored from DSW about four years ago by BCBG for only $30 (Bargain Hunting Tip: Always start in their clearance section first so you don’t get your heart set on the more expensive item. If you find what you’re looking for in the clearance section, make a beeline for the cashier, keeping your head down to avoid any potential fashion distractions). Want something similar? Polyvore has a ton of options to choose from.

Jeans? A pair of skinny jeans I found last week for $4.98 at Target. Yeah, they’re a little long, but they are cheap, fit well and replace the AG pair of skinny jeans that I accidently ripped two years ago in the butt (mortifying, but hilarious story about how I randomly felt a drift in my butt during a conference call). Anyways, if you are looking for a decent pair of cheap skinny jeans, Target has a pair online really similar to mine for $14.

It’s hard to tell in the photo, but I’m wearing a cute little black polka-dot top from Zara I bought four years ago on sale in Paris for about $15. The lovely short sleeve blazer was purchased for around $15 by a brand I can’t find online. The blazer’s lining is also black polka-dots, which gives the look a nice, clean feel (and you wouldn’t realize I paid only $30. For some reason lining just gives the feeling that it cost more than without it.

And finally, since fascinators are a bit inappropriate for the workplace, I’m rocking a headband from Forever 21 that I scored for under $5. It was part of my “Blair Waldorf” phase of headband wearing from three years ago. Haha. Forever 21 has a very similar headband for $3.80.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. Anna permalink
    July 22, 2011 3:16 pm

    Jenni, as always lovely read.
    I have only one small thing about your dressing, altogether I love your look, however I belive you should wear blouses with a V-neckline, or any neckline that will help you to give the illusion of longer neck.
    I don’t know if this is only on the photos, but that kind of neckline, close to your face appears on photos like you have no neck. Don’t know if you get what I’m saying??

    • July 22, 2011 3:20 pm

      I do! And it’s probably because I’m wearing a short-sleeve turtleneck 😉 Which of course, explains the no neck. Thanks for the feedback!

      • Anna permalink
        July 22, 2011 3:23 pm

        I hope you don’t get me wrong.. It’s just looking at your photos I noticed that, also with that green dress. Maybe because of the angle of the photo, or maybe you keep your head low :)) But if you need ann illusion of longer neck do some higher hairdo, oonly when wearing something close to neck, because with your black dress at Heather wedding I loved your hair.

  2. Anna permalink
    July 22, 2011 3:26 pm

    And please bigger photos of you:)) – like the ones with your lovely hair :)) it was big and clear :))) But I think here you were just suiting it to the size of Kate’s photos 🙂

    • Anna permalink
      July 22, 2011 3:27 pm

      And you know what else, you have great legs! 🙂

  3. PearlGirl permalink
    July 30, 2011 2:11 pm

    Take those jeans to a tailor, girl–they can make the hem just right, and even have the same color thread as was used in the rest of your jeans, so they will fit you perfectly & make them look as if it was a perfect fit right off the rack. Very few people who look fantastic in their clothes (read: Princess Catherine, et al…) & who buy off the rack are seen in public with those clothes without a trip to the tailor first. Every time I buy an article of clothing I always add in my head the cost of a trip to the tailor–I can buy nothing off the rack that fits me perfectly, not at any price.

  4. Becky permalink
    August 4, 2011 1:14 pm

    It’s true jenni…. Your legs are the best.

  5. September 26, 2011 1:36 am

    Kate has excellent style, it some how comes together and she looks fab. I love wedges for the casual look, they have a heel which is good for my short legs, but they are still compfortable to walk in.

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