I’m not sure how crazy the weather has been in other parts of the country but here in DC we went from sunny and gorgeous to cold, wet snow in less than 48 hours. Since it is January there will be many more dreary days ahead. When the weather is consistently bleak and the sky a depressing shade of grey I find myself trying to combat these downers in a variety of ways; baking, kickboxing class, evening-long happy hours, and with my closet.
The weather in DC seems to have finally decided to be consistently cold (about time considering it’s early January). This means that warm wool coats are now in constant rotation. I’ve always been drawn to very structured coats and the idea of a cape never really appealed me. However, a few months ago I was working at the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon and a friend from the New Zealand house wore a cape and I fell in love.
One of my favorite things about fall and winter (although with it still hitting the 50′s here in DC in December, not so sure this is “winter”) is sweater dresses. They’re warm, cozy, and lead to daydreaming about mugs of hot buttered rum next to a fireplace instead of the stale reject christmas cookies in the office kitchen.
In my daily trek through downtown DC I’ve noticed that women seem to carry one of two very different bags to work. The first is the Louis Vuitton Neverfull tote in the classic monogram print. While it is a timeless bag that can carry a plethora of objects, it is a little tiring when every other woman is carrying one. The second bag of choice for DC women seems to be a giant shopping bag of some sorts, the most common ones that come to mind are Urban Outfitters and Victoria’s Secret PINK bags. While useful, they are generally not the best compliment to professional attire.
Your work bag can reflect on you the same way your outfit does. There are a ton of options for great work bags if you just look. I gravitate towards work totes that are more versatile than your basic shopping bag. I have a Kooba tote that can fit my laptop while capable of being shortened on the side to become a handbag and I’m currently using a Lodis May satchel that fits a ton while being simple and crisp enough to not look as if I’m carrying it all.
In an ideal world the Mary Poppins bag would exist and I could carry everything under the sun to the office with me without looking like the crazy bag lady. Until that happens, however, I’ll have to continue searching for the perfect tote. When looking for a tote keep in mind a few things. First, thicker straps are going to be more comfortable on your shoulder than thin ones. Second, if the handles are short, make sure there is a shoulder strap (you will curse your bag later if there isn’t). Third, look for bags with a lot of organizational pockets inside and out. Here are a few options I would happily add to my collection:
While many of our connections with others have moved online, we still function each day with other people. These may be colleagues or coworkers. They may be clients or new acquaintances. But we still need to know how to act around them in order to not embarrass ourselves or our firms.
Here are a few basic etiquette tips to remember (there are many, but these ten are some of the most frequently abused):
When the weather gets hot, “must-have” fashion tends to get even hotter. While men are thinking about sporting their short sleeve dress shirts, women are getting excited about breaking out their peep-toe pumps. Last year, this phenomenon became known among women lawyers as “Peep-Toe Gate.” Will you grab a ticket to the peep show and dare to wear this controversial piece of couture during court appearances or at the office this summer?
You’ve seen them. You’ve been curious. Either in the courthouse or an office somewhere, you have spotted somebody wearing suspenders instead of a belt. You may have thought they looked a little out of place, or wondered how those things are held up. Suspenders can be a great addition to your wardrobe, and make you stand out just a little bit. In a good way. In this week’s installment of Dress for Success, learn why you should wear suspenders, and how to pull them off.
Women lawyers, have you struggled to find a fashionable, yet professional, bag to bring to the office? Are you worried that your colleagues won’t take you seriously if your bag is too “cute”? Worse yet, have you finally managed to find a fashionable bag that’s professional enough for the office, but later discovered that it simply won’t hold your files? If any of these situations have happened to you, please take comfort in the fact that you are not alone.