Thursday, March 31, 2011

Pictureless Thursday: Traveling in Tornados

Hi friends!

Today I'm taking the day off from work because I've been asked to film a testimonial video for Medi Weigh-Loss Clinics. Some of you probably don't know my story. I was pretty overweight for a long time after I gave birth to my daughter; I tried everything and eventually entered a contest through our local newspaper. I WON! Part of the prize package included 12 weeks with Medi (NOT the same as MediFast, they're different and I don't know much about them). 

I'll tell you the whole story one day; I'm short on time right now which is why I'm not able to do photos today either. 

My mom and daughter are coming with me because the shoot is in the city where my brother's family lives, so we're meeting my sister-in-law and nephew for lunch first. I'm going to ask my mom if she can take some photos during my shoot so I can give you a behind-the-scenes look!

Please send prayers my way for safe travels; there are tornado watches all throughout both my area and where I'm headed, until the afternoon (so at least our drive back should be okay!). I really don't want to drive two hours in torrential downpours with tornado warnings, but I made a commitment so I'm going to stick with it.

Hope you all have a great day, everyone!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Daily MelWear: Spring Professional

Hi everyone! How was your day yesterday? I've been so busy at work and home that I haven't had a chance to visit blogs lately and I miss seeing and reading the updates. How are you all doing?

I've decided to accept the challenge that some of you have issued in regard to my dress code. I've decided to try finding myself and my own style within the confines of our regulations. Monday's outfit only had the polka dots out of code (we're not really supposed to wear patterns), Tuesday's outfit fit pretty well I think except for the necklace (taken off when I left my office though!), and today's outfit makes me feel REALLY good! Very spring-like AND professional.


Oops, sorry, that slipped.

And before you ask, I truly was not trying to match the new blog design today. I just happen to like pink and yellow together!

My boss asked me if I had anything special planned today, based upon the outfit. I'm taking that as a compliment. :)

Hope you all have a great Wednesday!

Today's outfit:
White Skirt and Blazer: From my aunt (thank you!!!)
Pink Ruffled Blouse: Dots
Yellow Ribbon Belt: Target (came with a shirt I haven't worn yet)
Nude Pumps: DSW

Yes, I'm still totally in love with my camera and having tons of fun with it!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Daily MelWear: Berry Professional

*Disclaimer: In the interest of full disclosure and authenticity, I will tell you that after seeing these photos, I promptly went back to my room and put on black tights before leaving for work. So. Yeah. Pardon the glare of my legs. Wowza!

I know the post title is a little corny, but I couldn't come up with anything better.

This cranberry skirt is a recent purchase from Gap's clearance section. I think it just barely works for the "just above the knee" dress code regulation. Other than the necklace, I think everything is dress code perfect! I took the necklace off when I had to run an errand at the main medical plaza, so I did good.

I've had these shoes for a while but I bought them before I lost the weight so they're a little too big now. Time to get some heel grips, because they're really cute and I don't want to get rid of them!

That's all I've got for today. If you haven't suggested any questions for the professional blogger interview feature, send some in! I've gotten some really good questions from some of you and I want to make sure that this feature answers YOUR questions, not just mine!

Have a great day!  

Today's outfit:
Cranberry Skirt: GAP
Black Blouse: New York & Co. (this thing is over 10 years old!)
Blazer: Can't remember
Black Tights: Wal-Mart
Heels: Target
Necklace: Charlotte Russe

Monday, March 28, 2011

Daily MelWear: Peachy Keen

Look at me, just look at me! I don't actually mean me, I mean look at the blog!!! Especially if you're reading through a reader (that sounds so redundant). Nelah installed her design over the weekend! Didn't she do a fabulous job? I really love it. She perfectly encapsulated who I am and what I like. We still have a few tweaks to work out but I can't begin to tell you how much I adore her design. So, so much!

If you're a fan on Facebook, you may have seen that I posted a little contest over there to see who could come up with a name for the new feature that I mentioned last week.  There are some GREAT submissions and while I think I might have made a decision, I'm not calling it yet so go suggest something!

Speaking of the new feature, so many of you expressed interest in either participating or reading about others' points of view on the subject of what constitutes professional attire. I want this feature to inspire and encourage all of us. That's why I'd like to know what YOU want to know. I've come up with a questionnaire to ask the featured bloggers, but I don't want to only ask them my questions; I want to ask them your questions as well.

Let me know what questions you'd like to see answered in this feature via the comments or send me an email {aworkingmomsclost at}. I'll include as many of them as possible!

Now for the outfit. It's hard to tell in the photos but this sheath dress has some silvery criss cross patterns on it, subtle enough that I think it works for the "no patterned skirt" policy. With the polka dots in the cardigan, there's just enough pattern mixing to make me happy but still office-appropriate (I think so, anyway). This cardigan is a recent purchase from I ordered it on the Friday that they offered 100% of proceeds to be given to the relief efforts in Japan. I also ordered one in teal with brown polka dots. So cute! There's a bow design that's hard to see but it's there and it makes me happy. I will say that I ended up buttoning the top buttong and pinning the top of the dress to the cardigan so it wouldn't droop down - I have to make sure my neckline is as high as possible. 

Let's recap:
1.  Click through to the blog (unless you're there already) to check out the new design by Nelah!
2. Go to Facebook, become a fan, submit a suggestion for the feature title.
3. Leave a comment or send me an email {aworkingmomscloset at} with some questions you'd like answered for the new feature.

Easy, right?

Have a great day!

Today's outfit:
Dress: Target
Cardigan: Forever 21
Heels: Target
Belt: Payless

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Daily MelWear: A New Direction

After the past week or two of my posts being a little more full of complaint rather than positivity, I've decided to take a new direction with today's post.

For a while I've been considering adding a new feature to A Working Mom's Closet of interviewing other bloggers to spread the love in the internetz. If the comments on yesterday's post are any indication, there is a HUGE variance among bloggers regarding what is appropriate, what is professional, and what is acceptable. I'd like to take these two things and combine them, interviewing bloggers whose lifestyles and/or careers call for professional attire at some time or another (even stay-at-home moms sometimes need to dress professionally, so this feature doesn't exclude anyone or any type of blogger). I want to hear what they think is appropriate, what restrictions they have (if any) in what they may wear, and I want to see their professional outfits.

What I need from all of YOU are suggestions for bloggers to interview! I know there are many of you out there that showcase professional outfits and I'm sure there are plenty more that I'm not aware of yet, not to mention those who don't really showcase those types of outfits but wear them...and I'm sure have opinions about professional attire as well! This is a great opportunity for me to find some new blogs, gain some additional professional inspiration and for me to share all of that with you!

To suggest a blogger, you can either send me an email at aworkingmomscloset at or leave the link in the comments - and suggest yourself if you have some professional outfits and would like to be featured!

I'm excited about this!!!

And since today is jeans day in the office, I'm wearing jeans and SANDALS since I have some closed toe flats to slip on if anyone makes a surprise visit to our office. This top is another from my aunt, it's a petite small but still a little big (if the sleeve length is any indication!). Per my usual, I belted it! Belts make me happy. Very, very happy.

Hope you all have a great day and leave some comments to suggest yourself and/or other bloggers! Whee!

Today's outfit:
Jeans: Kohl's
Purple Top: From my aunt
Gold Belt: Charlotte Russe
Black Sandals: Beall's
Gold Necklace: Gift from ML

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Daily MelWear: Before and After: The Verdict

Oh, you guys are going to have a field day with this.

So, remember my dress from yesterday? I really like that dress. I think it's professional, classy and stylish, and other than the sleeves not being a full sleeve (it's more cap-sleeved rather than an actual short sleeve), it really does fit the dress code.

I wore the blazer all day until lunch time, when our boss and a co-worker, M., decided to walk a few blocks to pick up sandwiches for themselves. My other co-worker, A., and I brought our lunches but decided to walk with them because it was a really warm (in the 80's), nice day. I took my jacket off and headed toward the door with the other three women. My boss looks at me and says, "Well don't you look slinky!" I responded by saying it was too hot outside to wear the jacket. She said that I really should wear it because we'll be walking past other department's houses/offices and I could be seen by other staff members. I said that I'll put the jacket on and stay here in the office instead of taking a walk with them, but it was too hot to wear the jacket if I go walking outside. My co-worker A. offered to pick up our boss's lunch for her if she didn't want to walk with us and at that point, our boss said that I could go with them and if anyone says something to her about how I was dressed, she could say that she simply didn't see me take off the jacket before leaving.

This bothers me on a few levels. For one thing, if it's on my lunch break and I'm not wearing my staff badge, I should be allowed to wear whatever I'd like as I would on any other time off, such as the weekend. For another thing, I don't feel that the dress was in any way inappropriate. Lastly, it makes me sad that our will not stand up for us if someone else makes a comment to her about our attire. Even if she did think it looked nice, the fear of someone else making a comment was enough for her to decide that it wasn't okay. I'm willing to bet that if someone else, one of the other staff members that *might* have seen me, were to say to her that they thought the dress looked nice, my boss would likely agree emphatically and be fine with me wearing it.
What's also frustrating is that when I wore a certain dress one day, she told me that she liked my outfit. When I wore the same dress another day, she told me that it was too low cut.

Which leads me to our discussion about the dress code, which took place AFTER the lunch fiasco.  In a way, it seemed as though she agreed with our requests. We can wear jewelry as long as it's removed if we're seen by any other staff member (if they visit our office or we leave). Same goes for sandals and open-toe shoes (yay!). Prints need to be minimal and we're not entirely sure if she said that we could wear prints on skirts or not, but two of us did today. Skirts may be no shorter than just above the knee (this skirt is as short as we're allowed). As for sleeve length, she said that we're allowed to wear sleeveless in our office only and if we set foot outside our office, for lunch or any other reason, or if we have guests stop by, we MUST have some type of cover-up (blazer, sweater, bolero, anything with sleeves).

She also reserved the right to deem any piece of clothing inappropriate regardless of whether or not we feel that it complies with the rules and in that case, we are not to wear that item to work again, unless the offense is remedied (such as it being too low cut and we wear a higher shirt underneath).

Honestly, I drive to work every day nervous about whether or not she will find my outfit acceptable. I really like my boss, I really like my job. My boss has been a pleasure to work for, especially considering recent experiences. I just get so nervous about my attire here. Like I said, one day she'll tell me that my outfit looks nice and the next she'll decide that it's too low cut or too short or something. I can't ever be sure that what I'm wearing is okay.

I want to look appropriate and professional, and I want to stay true to myself. However it seems as though when I do wear prints or colors or any type of accessory or anything creative, anything that makes my outfit "me", it's not appropriate. I need to figure out how to dress professionally for this office.

I want to be a GREAT employee, I want my boss to be proud of me and comfortable with my presence at any work function.

So...that's my before and after story about the verdict of the dress code requests. This post has been long enough already (sorry about that - kudos to you if you read all of it!!!) so I'm just going to end here.

Today's outfit:
Skirt: Target
Pink Tee: Target
Brown Jacket: Can't remember
Pink Belt: Salvation Army
Necklace: Target
Shoes: Target
Um...I'm seeing a pattern here. Target, wanna sponsor me? Heh.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Daily MelWear: Hurry Up and Wait

Tuesday is full of hope and promise. What it lacks, however, is answers! One of my co-workers has an important meeting this morning so our boss is going to wait until she returns before meeting with us to {hopefully} discuss our dress code proposal. I'm anxious to hear if she will agree with everything or if there are things she'll still not allow.

I do believe that I'm following all of the rules of our corporate policy with this outfit. Although the dress may be a little clingy and the red a little bright, but with the blazer it takes some of that edge off. Today is a board meeting day so we're required to dress according to the Business Professional code (as opposed to the Business Casual code). This basically means wearing hose/tights and including a blazer or jacket.

I think I've decided that I'm going to allow myself to buy one new dress per month or per pay period from Ross. Typically when I'm there, I give myself a $10-$15 limit on dresses. If they cost more than that, I don't need them. However, a lot of the really professional and classy ones are the $50 Calvin Klein dresses. Some of them are only $30 or $40, but I've never paid that much before. It just seems like so much money. But, considering how versatile dresses can be and how often I wear them, I think I might need to begin spending a little bit more money for pieces that are more appropriate for my office.

Hope you guys had a great start to your week! I was actually able to read some blogs yesterday, that made me feel normal again. Today will probably be busy and the board meeting is tonight so I have a feeling I'll get behind again. Meh. Don't these people know that reading my friends' blog is IMPORTANT?! Geez. :)

Sorry about the craptastic quality of this shot!

Have a great day!

Today's outfit:
Dress: Ross
Blazer: Stein Mart
Tights: Wal-Mart
Heels: From my mom

And just because I like the goofy shots. Bonus. :)

Monday, March 21, 2011

Daily MelWear: I'm Late!

You guys. I am SO committed to you all that even though I woke up two hours late this morning and had to skip my work out and drying my hair and a few other things (I feel so unfinished - didn't even have time to pick out jewelry!), I still made sure to take pictures so that I can blog and say hi to all of you.


It kinda stinks when you forget to set your alarm. Oops. Good thing I picked out my clothes last night instead of waiting until it's time to get in the shower like I usually do.

Today was supposed to be the day when our boss gave us her decision on our dress code requests. However, she said that she didn't have much time to ponder them over the weekend so she would need today to do that and she'll let us know tomorrow. That gives us one more day to pray hard for her understanding and agreement!

And in more exciting news, Nelah of 52 New Days has been working hard for a while now on a new blog design for A Working Mom's Closet! We're getting very close to being able to install it and I. Can't. Wait. She has done an amazing job and I'm so, SO excited for you to see it!

Hope you all have an awesome Monday!

Today's outfit:
Polka Dot Dress: Ross
Purple Cardigan: Plato's Closet
Belt: Gift from my mom
Heels: Wal-Mart

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Daily MelWear: The Revised Attire Proposal

Since I know you're all just on the edge of your seats waiting to hear what happened after yesterday's meeting with our boss... (heh)

The two other women and I sat down with our corporation's dress code and discussed the revisions we'd like to request specific only to our small private office. We did make the statement that for our bi-monthly board meetings as well as any other meetings with employees outside of our office, we would adhere to the corporate guidelines rather than our office's modified version. 

I typed our requests into a formal proposal and we submitted them to her this morning. The requests included:
*prints and patterns on shirts, skirts and dresses
*shirt styles other than tailored (such as a scoop or v-neck, or sleeveless as long as a jacket or cardigan is available as needed)
*sandals and other open-toe shoes as long as closed-toe shoes are kept at our desk in case of visitors
*skirt and dress length to be just above the knee or longer (none of this calf length or longer stuff)
*jewelry permitted as long as it's removed for meetings or errands at the medical plaza
*on Thursdays when we're allowed to wear jeans, the option of wearing cropped dress pants or capri style dress pants

There were a few other little odds and ends things too but I don't want to bore you with everything.

While she didn't flip out, she did say she had concerns about the jewelry and the cropped/capri pants, but she would think about it over the weekend and let us know on Monday what she will and will not permit.

All in all, I think we did a pretty good job with our proposal. Now let's just see what happens on Monday.

Thank you guys for sticking with me through this! Your suggestions, advice and most of all your support is appreciated so much more than you know.

Hope you all have a great day!

Today's outfit:
White Skirt: Can't remember
Teal Blouse: From my aunt
Yellow Tank: Plato's Closet (worn backwards so the neckline would be high enough!)
White Cardigan: Target
Nude Snakeskin Heels: DSW

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Daily MelWear: Thoughts To Ponder, Decisions To Make

Oh, you guys.

We had yet another meeting this morning about our dress code. As tired as I'm sure you all are of hearing about it, I'm MORE tired of worrying about it and talking about it. I did a brief outline of it in an earlier post that you can find here. If you haven't read about the rules by which we're supposed to abide, take a look at that.

So for today's outfit, the problems include the animal print, the neckline is apparently too low, the skirt hem is too short and the necklace should only be a single gold or silver strand no thicker than 1/8 inch. We're not even supposed to wear pearls.

Now, keep in mind that my office is NOT located in the main medical plaza. We're in an office that used to be a little house, a few blocks away from the main plaza. There are only four of us who work in this little office, my boss plus me plus two other women. Ocassionally we do have meetings here but they're typically informal and with other departments who seem to not follow the dress code exactly either. However, my boss has asked the three of us to review the dress code, decide what we all agree should be modified for our office, and then present to her for approval. The stipulation is that when we have guests for a meeting here or when we need to go to the main medical plaza (such as for our bi-monthly meetings), we need to make sure that we are following all of the guidelines. 

All that being said...I'm seriously wondering if I should continue to keep a style blog if I have to begin complying with every single one of those regulations. I write this blog to express my personal style, to find what works for me and what I enjoy wearing. I don't have the money to go out and buy all new "corporate approved" items and I don't feel as though dressing each day will be enjoyable if I'm not permitted to dress for myself. I take great care in making sure that I'm appropriate and professional, and I feel as though that should be sufficient.

I'm sorry for being so wordy. I just feel slightly defeated right now. Obviously these photos were taken before I left the house this morning when I thought the outfit was pretty cute!

Hope your day is going better than mine has started! :)

Today's outfit:
Dress: Ross
Wrap Blouse: From my aunt
Silver Heels: Payless
Black Necklace: Wal-Mart

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Daily MelWear: Ladylike Pink and Turquoise

Hi friends!

Since so many of you asked what kind of camera I ended up getting, here's a link. I've only used it for two days and haven't had a chance to read anything so I don't know much, but I will say that so far I LOVE it! I'm glad it seems like you're all able to see a difference in the quality of the pictures, too. That makes me happy!

This dress is one of the ones I bought a few weeks ago at Ross during my retail therapy. Although technically the print is out of dress code (and the bare arms might be as well), I do like the silhouette, the length and the neckline. It's got a fun 50's vibe to it! What I wish I had is a pair of yellow or turquoise pumps. I really need to branch out in bright footwear.

Today's activities at work include another training session this morning for the new electronic system we're going to implement at the end of April and then delivering packets to our board members for next week's meeting. Plus all my regular work too. Whee!

I'm seriously having way too much fun with this camera. :)

What's on your agenda today?

Today's outfit:
Dress: Ross
Belt: Charlotte Russe
Black Pumps: Target
Turquoise Necklace: Beya