Shop Your Closet: Work Pants + Ask Me Anything!

Welcome back to #shopyourclosetseries.  This week, it’s all about the office as I’ve received tons of requests to do one that is cubicle-friendly.  How overlooked are basic work pants?  I bet you use and abuse yours–I know I did when I worked in corporate America.  But there are ways to make them sing.  But first, I think it’s important to explore other color ways; you can still look professional when you’re not wearing black.  I wanted to showcase this olive pair (they’re $50–and TTS…I’m wearing a 2 and could probably size down to a 0 if I wanted them super slim).  I also love the blue!

Some of your questions answered below:

What is the longest you’ve had an item in your closet?

I LOVE THIS QUESTION…and after a glance in my closet, I don’t have an articulate answer.  I graduated college in 2007 and just got rid of some J Brand jeans from that era (2005ish, I think).  My oldest items are all dresses, though.  I hold on to those for the memories alone…even if I don’t wear them.  There’s something about dresses–maybe because we wear them for major occasions in our life?  I have a hard time parting with those moments and I definitely have some from the 2000s in my closet.  In terms of items I still wear, there are more pieces from the 2011-12 era that I still wear (this H&M dress comes to mind).

Who watches your kids when you take adult trips?

Unfortunately, Eric and I don’t live near grandparents…it’s a big bummer and I’m jealous of all people who get to raise their kids with grandparents nearby.  But luckily, our parents both live about 3.5 hours away and are willing to come into town to watch the kids if we ever need to get away.  I also have two siblings that live in the city so if my mom comes into town, she’s also able to visit with them. My sister-in-law, who lives in Columbus, has also flown in and watched the kids for us which has been amazingly helpful!  While we were in Miami, my mom came into town to watch the boys over the weekend with the help of my big sister (we also have a nanny that comes a few days a week so I can work).  Families rule–God bless them and modern-day transportation.

How do you decide what to purchase? Your clothes look better because of how you style them.

First, thank you–that’s such a high compliment.  And two, I’ve just become a pretty good online shopper over the years due to trial and error.  There are a couple things I look at before I purchase and that’s fabrication and certain measurements.  Fabrication tells me what I can expect from how a garment sits, drapes, or fits.  (Check out some of your favorite items in your closet and see what fabrics comprise it).  Measurements help too, because I’m on the taller side and those jeans might be wayyyy too cropped for me.  I can do a crop, but if it’s shorter than 29″, it’s probably a no for me.  I also ALWAYS look to see what size the model is wearing (if the retailer has it available…I can’t believe Nordstrom doesn’t do that yet) before I purchase and use that as a baseline.  Finding brands that consistently work for you can be helpful and I usually ALWAYS read the reviews of an item (for fit purposes).  And don’t worry–I strike out plenty.

Lastly, I’ve said this on my blog a few times, but before I purchase an item, I mentally style that item three different ways with items already in my closet.  It forces me to think about how I’ll wear it in my closet rather than make impulse buys.

You recently said you considered moving to another city…just curious, where?

It was actually Charleston!  I know, out of the blue, right?  We have some ties, though: my oldest sister and her family relocated down to SC a few years ago and we were fresh off an Isle of Palms vacation in 2017 and we fell in love with it and the idea of making a move.  I’ve visited the city a bunch and it’s just the best.  We talked about it seriously for months and I was RedFin-ing like crazy.  My sister-in-law (Eric’s sister) also has plans of moving down there someday (she got married there, too).  Ultimately, it just didn’t make a ton of sense for Eric’s work–he travels a lot but he can’t afford to be that remote; I could’ve been a little more flexible, but at the time I was still working full-time in Chicago when we were discussing it.  It was Eric’s job that was the deciding factor, though, and we had to table it.  I never say never, though–we could be in Chicago forever or maybe not!

What’s your workout routine like?

I’m a loyalist to SALT fitness (there are three locations in the Chicago area).  I’ve been going there since I took up working out again after Teddy was born and know what to expect; plus, I feel like I’m improving so I’m sticking with it for now!  I aim to go 2-3 times a week and I’ve been pretty consistent over the past few months.  They offer traditional barre classes, a more intense ‘barre sweat’ class, and a faster-paced interval class.  I go to all three to mix it up and keep things spicy.  I still have weak upper body strength (will I ever be able to do a pull-up? Probably not) but I have definitely been feeling a lot more toned.  I felt pretty good in my bathing suit while in Miami and I am NOT, I repeat, NOT the girl who enjoys walking around in a bathing suit all day–give me a coverup all day long.  Plus, I’m in a much better mood and feel that i’m a lot more patient with those surrounding me when I get a couple workouts in–wins all around.

Answering these were so fun!  I have more I’d like to answer next week but if you have any questions, leave them in the comments below.

A white blouse always works with work slacks – but go for a faux wrap top as it’s a bit unexpected. // Everlane work pants, Likely top (on sale here), Everlane tote, Sam Edelman heels
This outfit is perfect for casual offices when you don’t want to wear jeans. Leopard and statement sleeves make it sing. // Everlane work pants, old WhoWhatWear Target top, old Madewell loafers (love these, too!)
Work in a more creative environment that still leans professional? Add an oversized blazer and you’ll still look chic. // Everlane pants, old IRO blazer (similar here), J Crew cami, old Steve Madden heels, Everlane bag

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