“I’m about to graduate after having gone back to university for a second degree. What are some must-have clothing items I should buy for going back to work? They can’t be too expensive because right now, my budget is very limited. Also, I love to wear blazers and pantsuits but I have short hair. How do I keep that look feminine?”
To help Rebecca with her wardrobe dilemma, I created a budget friendly, mix and match capsule wardrobe that has a feminine edge, is trendy yet office appropriate.
The navy suit is our building block. The entire suit (pant and jacket) is just under $80, a fabulous price point! Opt for a shaped jacket with a defined waist rather than a boxy shape for a more feminine silhouette. Navy is a flattering yet softer colour than stark black. It offers exceptional mix and match potential!
To keep the look feminine, instead of choosing classic cotton shirts, opt for tops with feminine touches and details including lace, ruffles, drapery fabrics and soft necklines (like V-necks or scoop necks).
Sources: navy jacket and navy pant from H&M; off-white lace top, hoop earrings and gold bracelets from LE CHATEAU; statement necklace from WINNERS; navy suede pumps and mustard handbag from DESIGNER SHOW WAREHOUSE CANADA.
This is the perfect look for casual Fridays! The trench coat will always be a must-have piece, and red is a classic colour with some punch. Everyone needs something striped this season, and this top has shaping for feminine edge! The camel straight leg pant is casual yet polished enough to be worn with a blazer.
Because we have kept colour in mind, every piece in this outfit can be worn with every piece in our first outfit!
Sources: red trench coat, striped top, camel pants and scarf from LE CHATEAU; faux snake skin flats from WINNERS; mustard handbag from DESIGNER SHOW WAREHOUSE CANADA.
Not only is this cream draped jacket with zipper detail on trend, but it is versatile and works with the navy suiting and camel pants. The coral blouse (one of this season’s must-have hues) has a feminine neckline and fabric. What’s also trendy and feminine? The knee-length skirt!
Sources: cream jacket from H&M; coral blouse, layered necklace and bracelet from LE CHATEAU; navy and white printed skirt from LOFT; navy suede pumps from DESIGNER SHOW WAREHOUSE CANADA.
“I've recently seen some pretty tops and dresses that have revealing backs but I'd rather not go braless. Are there any solutions around this?”
Based on your bust size and the amount of back exposure there are three bra options:
Waist Length Bustier
The waist length bustier/corset is an excellent choice for dresses and blouses with backs that dip just below the bra band or mid back. This style is also great for strapless or sheer front dresses.
The boning and underwire provide good support for fuller busted gals. The boning also works as a waist and tummy shaper — great option for brides!
Sources: nude bustier from LINEA INTIMA; black low back lace dress from LE CHATEAU.
Bra Back Converter
Convertible straps will easily convert a regular bra or strapless bra into a low back bra. It works by attaching to the hooks of your bra and wrapping around your waist to pull down the band. This option is perfect for women with small to mid-sized bust lines who want to wear low back tops and dresses.
Sources: cobalt bra and bra back converter from LINEA INTIMA; cobalt low back top from GUESS; yellow midi-skirt from HUDSON’S BAY; gold necklace from LE CHATEAU.
Seamless Adhesive Bra Cups
For extremely low cut or plunge dresses, adhesive bra cups are the only option. This is best for smaller busted gals and is usually available in A-D cups. Adhesive cups give a little bit of light support depending on your breast weight and how perky you are, but they are mainly used for modesty.
Sources: adhesive bra from LINEA INTIMA; floral print backless maxi dress from MENDOCINO.
“My legs look great in black pants but in white or light coloured pants you can see every bump and bulge. I love the look of white pants, especially for summer! Any tips on what I should look for in a white pant to achieve a flattering look?”
White pants are a strong trend this spring and summer, and these days we are seeing white pants being worn year round!
Our legs do look sleek and slim in a dark pant because dark colours absorb more light than they reflect, whereas a light or white pant reflects more light than it absorbs. Because of this, more of the variations across the thigh will be revealed.
What do you need to look for in a white pant to get a flattering look?
Sources: first white pant from LOFT; second white pant from GAP; third white pant from RALPH LAUREN at HUDSON’S BAY.