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Nordstrom Fall Clearance Sale – My Picks

nordstrom fall clearance saleThrough November 15th, Nordstrom is having their Fall Clearance Sale. If you didn’t score your deals during the Anniversary Sale, now’s the time to replenish your wardrobe with wallet-friendly staples and update with current trends. I’m a big fan of Nordstrom for their free shipping and returns (with no time limit), variety of sizes, brands, and pricepoints. My picks from the clearance:


Don’t have your winter coat yet? Now’s the time to get one at a great price!

Fall and Winter Fashion

Nordstrom always has great sales on fashion, but these events are great to score good prices on clothes you can wear right now.


I’m impressed by the selection of shoes, especially boots, that are on sale right now at Nordstrom

  • The ‘Dakotah’ riding boot from Hinge looks like a million bucks but is on sale for less than $100. Three colors to choose from, this is a classic that will look chic over skinny jeans or leggings or under skirts.
  • The ‘Penny’ Boot from Sam Edelman is gorgeous and luxe, comes in regular and wide calf options, as well as six different colors. Great customer reviews and a great sale price!
  • I really really want the ‘Joanie’ boot from MICHAEL Michael Kors. Stretch back and leather front, a tough lug sole, this is a badass boot that has a touch of elegance. Style with a floaty chiffon dress, slip over jeans or leggings. Reviews are positive and people say they are wearable for long days of walking.
  • The Vince Camuto ‘Empa’ Pointy Toe Loafer Flat is an excellent work shoe. Great lines and a toe that will peek out from work trousers and look professional. Four great colors to choose from and under $70.
  • I have the Converse Shoreline sneakers and love them as an alternative to classic Chucks, which hurt my feet. With an elasticized back and laces, it’s comfort yet still maintains that classic style. I love wearing with sundresses and cuffed jeans.
  • The ‘Eleanor’ ankle strap heeled sandal is the perfect shoe for your holiday dressy events. Thin straps and an elegant style will look great with everything from silk cigarette pants to dresses of every length. Six colors available.
  • I dig this moto boot, I own similar which I find surprisingly versatile.  I wear with leggings or skinny jeans, boyfriend jeans, and think it’s a great contrast with tights and shift dresses.
  • If you’re looking for a classic Chelsea boot, the ‘Nocturno’ from Lucky Brand is a great option at a great price. Available in two colors.
  • I’m loving brogues right now; they’re sassy and stylish yet quite comfortable and wearable all day.  The ‘Lacey’ oxford from Halogen has a fun leopard print that would look great with denim or peeking out of work trousers.
  • These leopard print Mary Janes from Jessica Simpson are so sweet and would make a great contrast to most any color in your wardrobe.  And for less than $60, you can’t resist!
  • The Cole Haan ‘Anya’ bootie is the perfect boot for work and play.  Sleek heel and pointed toe to look elegant and professional with trousers as well as opaque tights, yet it will also look fab come the weekend with jeans or a little dress.


I always buy my bags during Nordstrom sales because they regularly put current styles and hot brands at a nice discount.


So many of my accessories come from Nordstrom; they do a good job of mixing pricepoints without including crappy quality.

  • This long beaded stone pendant is in my shopping cart as I type this.  Less than $25 for a long pendant that will add a bit of interest and sparkle to any kind of outfit.  It’s hard to choose which color to buy; I was really torn but went with Arabian Spice.
  • This oversized scarf will add style three seasons out of the year; the price is phenomenal for a scarf of that size.  It’s so big you can get creative with it – make it a cummerbund, turn it into a beach coverup, and tie it in a multitude of ways!
  • This cuff from Melinda Maria reminds me of my Rebecca Minkoff cuff that I wear all the time.  It’s so simple it makes for a wonderful signature piece, and I adore the faceted stone detail!
  • You know by now how much I adore my silver wrist cuff; this domed cuff bracelet from Nordstrom isn’t sterling or quite as big but it still makes a gorgeous impact.  Also comes in gold and the price is fantastic!
  • I adore the statement that this wide braided belt from MICHAEL Michael Kors creates.  Slip over any sheath or fit and flare dress in your wardrobe for a complete transformation; it would also look great cinching a scarf or ruana.
  • If you’re in need of gloves this winter (or want to give a lovely gift) these knit cuff leather gloves from Fownes Brothers are classic, elegant, and I have a pair of gloves by this brand and can confirm they are well made.  Three colors to choose from.
  • I think this glasses chain is so pretty!  If you wear reading or computer glasses, you’re often slipping them on and off; this makes the process easy and not look granny at all.

Have you purchased anything during the Nordstrom Fall Clearance Sale?  What are your picks?

The Best Summer Flat Shoes From Nordstrom [Sponsored]

Many of you have emailed me asking for advice on summer flats; Nordstrom recently reached out to me asking if I could write about their extensive collection of flats for summer right as I was writing a post on the very subject. As you know, I’m a huge Nordstrom fan; free shipping, free returns, a crazy great selection of shoes for all occasions and price matching. Who could ask for anything more? A few fab flats available at Nordstrom and why I think they’re a fab choice for this spring and summer.

best summer flats

  1. I’m all about a statement shoe; it transforms wardrobe staples and brings your outfit up a notch. The ‘Pallas’ skimmer flat from Via Spiga has a leg-lengthening pointed toe, enough structure to be appropriate in many office settings, yet a versatile shape that would look great with everything from fluid trousers to sundresses to denim cutoffs. While it’s available in cobalt and nude, this print I think is actually more versatile.
  2. Sperry knows how to do classic prep, and the ‘Harper’ flat fits the bill. These would look adorable paired with ankle pants, crisp cotton Bermudas, or even a cotton sundress. Come fall, pair with everything from boyfriend jeans to flared denim to camel or cream work trousers.
  3. It’s hard to find comfortable flats that are dressy enough for all the day and destination weddings on your summer social calendar, but the ‘Would I Lie’ by Seychelles would work, while also being able to dress down for a weekday. Available in a pewter or black subtle metallic finish, these sandals get great reviews for look as well as comfort.
  4. A windowpane print is like a leopard print – an unexpected neutral. It also brightens any outfit and adds a mod touch. The ‘Willa’ skimmer flat from Kate Spade not only comes in this graphic black and white print, but six other colors, prints, and textures that will make it hard to decide which one is best for your summer wardrobe.
  5. I’m one who wears leopard prints year round; the ‘Chandler’ pointy toe flat from Sole Society has such an open, airy style it makes leopard summer-appropriate. Pair with distressed denim, rompers and dressy shorts, midi skirts, and work trousers.
  6. Shoes of Prey is the latest footwear brand on my radar – their prints and materials are so unique and exciting, their styles are quite wearable, and all their shoes come in a variety of widths from A to EE. I’m partial to their Cap Toe Fish Scale Ballet Flat because it’s a traffic-stopping combination that will work with everything from work trousers to boyfriend jeans. However, I recommend you checking out the other styles from Shoes of Prey; I think you’ll be as impressed as I.
  7. Espadrilles are in style this summer and you have a large variety available. I’m partial to the ‘Lida’ from Sam Edelman which has the classic braided base, but mixes up beading, prints, and leather trim. Two different combinations are available; this is a shoe that takes a simple tank and shorts or tee and jeans and makes the look purposeful and boho chic.
  8. The Dansko ‘Nanette’ is the kind of shoe I recommend in most any travel capsule wardrobe because it’s so versatile and so comfortable for long days walking and on your feet. Such a shoe works with cropped pants, skirts, shorts, and even long pants and can be worn all seasons of the year. If you’re planning to do a bunch of travel this summer, you may wish to consider this or a similar shoe.
  9. For those who find classic espadrilles too bulky, the ‘Tahiti’ D’Orsay espadrille from Kaanas may be what you’re looking for. Available in two different prints that are quite versatile, this is a casual shoe that will work with most everything in your summer wardrobe.
  10. French Sole’s ‘League’ skimmer is the perfect versatile summer flat. Made with perforated nubuck leather, this is an elegant yet extremely comfortable shoe and a classic look that will be wearable for years to come. While I chose to feature it in fuchsia, it was hard to make a decision between the five neutrals and statement colors.
  11. There’s something about this crisp black and white espadrille from Soludos that makes it stand out from the pack. Maybe it’s the black stitching, or the low profile, or the crisp black and white stripes that will look so fresh on a summer day. I must say the price is also pretty nice.
  12. I fell in love with the Ivanka Trump ‘Tadora’ ballet flat as soon as I saw it. So elegant, so feminine, and yet so comfortable. Available in light blue, white, black, and the print; all four styles are bejeweld and beautiful and proving that you don’t need a heel to look elegant.

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Spring Travel with The North Face and Nordstrom [Sponsored]

Once April hits, it seems 75% of the questions I get from you readers is what to pack for trips. Spring Break, April in Paris, a need to get away after a cold dark winter, whatever the reason now is the time for travel. And while the temps are rising, it’s not yet summer and important to pack for the elements. Nordstrom recently asked me to feature The North Face on Wardrobe Oxygen for spring and at first I found it an odd choice; when I think of The North Face I think heavy puffer coats and eTip gloves. However, taking a look at The North Face collection at Nordstrom, I found many pieces that are perfect for spring travel, and for creating a classic travel capsule wardrobe that will have you ready for any trip any time of the year.

the north face nordstrom

1. A couple years ago I bought a packable raincoat and it has been one of the best buys. While I rarely shove it back into its pouch, it’s a jacket that can be smushed into a bag taking up little room and not being destroyed, is a simple cut and style that can pair with jeans or even a dress, and the hood makes it far better a choice on inclement days than my trench. When I travel, I always bring it along for anything from a breezy day to a full-on rainstorm. The North Face’s ‘Rissy’ Packable Wind & Water Resistant Jacket is similar to the packable trench I own but better with higher security zipper pockets and an adjustable waist to create a flattering feminine shape. In two classic colors, this will be your must-have for all upcoming travel as well as spring showers back home.

2. The ‘Laney’ trench raincoat from The North Face is another winner, and the customer reviews prove it. Lightweight, well-shaped to flatter not just the figure but the head when the hood is up, and more classic of trench styling without losing functionality or packability. Not only that, the coat is made from 100% recycled polyester! Available in three colors, this is a beautiful hybrid of style and function.

3. For those who prefer a more casual or athletic-inspired rain jacket, the highly rated ‘Venture’ from The North Face is a popular choice. Available in nine colors, this packable hooded jacket is a winner even for tropical trips, when warm sunny days may be hit with a mid-afternoon shower.

4. Fleece jackets are brilliant for travel. They’re cozy and can ball up nicely for a neck pillow on the flight, add warmth without bulk, and are water resistant. I like the ‘Lunelly’ Jacket because it’s a longer length than many fleeces, better flattering the figure. The logo is tone on tone keeping it subtle and the stand collar adds some style to a piece that would make a perfect addition to any travel capsule.

5. I’m all about the packable outwear; it’s hard to be prepared for the elements and still have room in your suitcase for the rest of your wardrobe! Packable coats and vests make it possible to have both. The ‘Tonnerro’ jacket is great because it’s a classic look, comes in three great colors (this link is for red and black, this link is a pretty light blue), and it has a hood. This is a coat that will be great for travel but also for the everyday come fall and winter.

6. Last winter I purchased a quilted vest and it was one of my best purchases. For a morning walk I’ll slip it over a running top and even a fleece to keep my core warm without overheating. On weekends I throw it over a Breton tee or plaid flannel for style with warmth. And when traveling, it’s a great choice because it can be worn on its own or layered over or under another jacket for extra warmth without taking a ton of space in the suitcase. The North Face’s ‘ThermoBall™’ vest is a great choice because it’s lightweight, machine washable, but just as warm as 600-fill down. Available in six colors.

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Nordstrom Clearance Sale – Best Buys Under $100

If you follow Wardrobe Oxygen on Facebook (which you should, I share lots of content there that I don’t share anywhere else and the discussions in the comments can get quite good), you know that Nordstrom is having a clearance sale, and I’m pretty impressed with what is available at a nice price. I felt this sale was so good and I was getting too annoying with my posts on Facebook that I had to share my faves here on the blog. A lot of these deals are better than Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale prices, and there’s a lot of winter must-haves available. Below I share my opinion on great buys and all are under $100:


Nordstrom has the best sales on shoes; if you stalk their sales you can get shoes up to 70% off, and unlike other sale sites, you can easily return any shoes that are wrong for free, and no sale is final.

  1. The ‘Oaklee’ Pump by DV for Dolce Vita is a great alternative to my now-discontinued silver pumps from Nine West, and a great price of $47.37. Also available in black leather, blush and red suede, this shoe gets rave reviews from Nordstrom customers.
  2. Another great shoe from DV for Dolce Vita is the ‘Posie’; that perfect suede wedge bootie that goes with every cut of denim in your wardrobe. In black and tan suede, this shoe can slip under straight and boot cut styles and will also look great with cuffed boyfriend and skinny jeans (add a ragg sock to fill in the space between jean and shoe). A wedge makes height easy to walk in, and the price of $49.96 isn’t too tough on your wallet.
  3. I’ve been a fan of the elegant ‘Moveover’ flat from BP. for a long while and regularly feature it in my capsule wardrobes. Right now, red and cobalt patent and silver leather are on sale for $33.46. If you’re looking for a holiday shoe that’s festive yet flat, this is for you. Pair the silver with a LBD or velvet ankle pants for a comfortable yet chic party look.
  4. I’ve always loved the look of Chuck Taylors but never found them comfortable… until I tried their Shorelines. The elasticized back plus a slightly different shape makes them a weekend favorite for me year-round. Three slightly sparkly colors of the Shoreline are on sale for $36.81 and would look great this winter as well as come spring and summer.
  5. Fun shoes are fine and good, but sometimes you need to be practical. The ‘Blast III’ snow boot from Trotters is subtle enough to handle your office commute, but sturdy enough to survive a tough winter. Available in four widths and only $57.40, this is a great winter buy.
  6. I own the ‘Marlie’ pump from Halogen in gray leopard and find it sexy yet quite comfortable. This sale has the black and red calfhair versions on sale for $60.26.
  7. I find BP. shoes to be quite comfortable and well made for their low prices. Their ‘Andover’ bootie is one of those classics that will look stylish now and years from now. Slip under jeans and more casual work trousers, or pair with tights and dresses. Available in cognac and black for $66.96
  8. Always nice to find a rainboot with some style! The ‘Devenport’ rain boot from MICHAEL Michael Kors looks like an engineer boot but will let you comfortably slog through slush and puddles. On sale for $76.97, these are the kind of boots you don’t need to take off as soon as you get to your destination.
  9. Doc Martens are a classic, and the ‘1460 W’ boot from them fits this season’s grunge theme, but is also a useful boot to wear under pants or over tights and leggings and stay warm and dry all winter. On sale for $80.77
  10. I adore these shiny silver or gold sneakers from MICHAEL Michael Kors – what a great way to add style without sacrificing comfort! On sale for $83.71, these will add shine and style to all your wardrobe basics.
  11. Hello, a knee-high wide calf boot under $100? Yes please! The BP. ‘Burton’ boot has moto-inspired details that are on trend yet a classic and the $87.06 price is very nice.
  12. For those who don’t have wide calves, the ‘Aragosta’ tall moto boot from Nine West is also pretty awesome, and has the awesome price of $88.89.

Bags and Accessories

  1. Nordstrom sales are when I pick up most of my scarves. They have great deals at that time, and you can find some pieces that end up being wardrobe favorites. I love this ‘Folklore Floral’ scarf from Tasha; both colors are pretty but I am partial to mustard. Imagine it peeking out of a leather jacket this fall or tied around your head or waist with a sundress this summer! Only $18.76 for a wardrobe gamechanger.
  2. Get the look of my silver cuff for a nice low price! This cuff from Nordstrom comes in silver and gold and is only $28.98. I’ve bought Nordstrom brand costume jewelry before and have always found it high quality.
  3. This Fringed Faux Pearl Necklace from Nordstrom will dress up basic knits in your wardrobe without being too ostentatious. The length is both versatile and flattering. $28.98
  4. For a bit more drama, this Faux Pearl Multilayer Necklace from Nordstrom is perfect. Classic but makes a statement, this would quickly dress up your office dress to be perfect for after-work drinks or a weekend wedding. $33.98
  5. The ‘Audrey – Mallory’ leather wallet from Lodis is begging to be a holiday gift for a woman on your list. A quality brand, a gorgeous color, and that perfect size to slip into a clutch or small purse, it’s a steal at $34.80
  6. Talk about a statement necklace! Buy this fringe necklace from Nordstrom because I told myself I am not allowed to, though I have been admiring it all season! Imagine it peeking out of the neckline of a wrap dress, or worn over a simple black turtleneck. This baby would even make a simple white tee shirt look glam. On sale for $40.80
  7. A black tote is a great item to have in your arsenal, this one from Sam Edelman has enough structure and the leather details to make it office appropriate. $58.80
  8. I love this ruana from Echo so much, and I can’t decide which color is best. Slip over a simple tank for a fun casual night out look, belt over a sweater and jeans, and this summer wear as a beach coverup. Once you have it, you’ll find so many ways to style it. $58.96
  9. Tis the season for the most perfect pashmina under the sun at a nice price. I only buy cashmere pashminas from Nordstrom during their sales. They’re the perfect weight, perfect size, and with over 30 colors to choose from you can find the perfect one for your wardrobe. $78.40
  10. I love oversized aviators, but they’re usually pricey. These from MICHAEL Michael Kors are perfect for those of us with big heads (or those who like the oversized look), have a classic shape and color, and the great price of $86.43.
  11. This leather shoulder bag from Halogen is simple perfection; while black is a safe bet I am also loving the Red Velvet shade. On sale for $88.80.
  12. A leather satchel under $100? Woo-hoo! It’s available in the same shades as the shoulder bag, can be carried in the hand or worn as a shoulder or crossbody and is only $94.80.


While I could make a list of 500 great clothes and outerwear on clearance at Nordstrom, I stuck to the top 12 under $50.00.  However, I recommend you check out the entire clearance clothing department for there’s some amazing buys for lingerie, activewear, swimwear, sleep and loungewear, as well as coats and clothes and such in regular, petite, and plus sizes.

  1. Clearance time is when I stock up on tights at Nordstrom.  The DKNY Opaque Control Top Tights are on sale for $12, as are their Super Opaque tights (also on sale for $12) which add extra opacity and warmth.  DKNY tights are durable, well-made, not shiny, and I find fit my figure quite nicely.  If you’re a Spanx fan like me, their Tight End Tights are on sale for $21 and In Power Line Shaping Sheers are also $21.  Commando tights are durable and well made; their opaque tights are on sale for $25.50 and their Ultimate Opaques on sale for $27.
  2. This sleeveless drape neck top from Halogen is a wardrobe workhorse; in the summer pair with white jeans and metallic sandals for a night out look and come winter wear under your suits and cardigans for office style.  On sale for $23.40 in regular and petite sizes, it’s available in a rosy pink print, a subtle black and navy print, and classic black and ivory.
  3. I have this classic Three Quarter Sleeve Cardigan from Halogen and find it to be a good basic cardi with a nice fit; you can’t ever have too many of these come fall and at this price you can buy one to keep at the office or in the car.  Available in pink, plum, and a black and ivory ‘chameleon’ print for $27.60.
  4. This Open Front Cardigan from Bobeau is a must this season.  It’s style looks office appropriate but it’s easy to throw on over a tee for the weekend.  Without buttons, it’s easier to wrap and belt for a completely different look.  10 colors and prints available in regular and petite sizes for just $29.90.
  5. Another great cardigan, this one from Olivia Moon and it has a bit more of a drape and a nice nubby texture.  Available in plus sizes as well as regular and petite, I’m partial to the cream/black stripe. $29.40 for regular and petite, $33.98 for plus.
  6. It’s a jacket, and it’s a cardigan!  This plus size knit waterfall cardigan with faux leather sleeves from Jessica Simpson is one of those pieces that makes you look pulled together though you feel as cozy as if you were in sweats.  $34.49
  7. This Three Quarter Sleeve Wedge Dress from Gibson is one of those perfect dresses that can dress up or down depending on how you style it.  Pair with pearls and heels for a wedding, or wear with a pashmina and tall boots for a trip to the mall.  Available in black, blue, and burgundy for just $34.80.
  8. Caslon’s Pocket Tunic Sweater is perfect for pairing with skinny jeans and tall boots for the weekend, but some of the prints (and basic black) would also work nicely in a Business Casual office.  Available in regular and petite sizes for just $34.80.
  9. When you can find quality suiting pants under $40 it’s pretty exciting.  Halogen’s ‘Taylor’ pants are comfortable, nice quality, and an even nicer price during this sale.  The pants in Heather Taupe are a classic shade, available in regular and petite lengths, and only $39.49.
  10. It’s the time of year for corduroy, and these stretch cords from JAG are a perfect cut to wear with ankle booties or flats, or slip under tall boots. Four colors available in petite sizes for just $47.40.
  11. I love this long sleeve knit jacket from Caslon.  Moto details and colors that can work in the office as well as for the weekend, this is a great way to polish up basic knits and jeans or add warmth to workday dresses and blouses.  Three colors available for $39.90.
  12. Kut from the Kloth makes great fitting jeans and I think they hold up quite well too.  Bootcuts are back, and the ‘Natalie’ from Kut from the Kloth is a great cut and a great price at $47.70.  Available at this link in black, and this link in ‘Wise’ which is a more traditional jean color.

Nordstrom Half-Yearly Sale: My Picks Under $75

nordstrom half yearly sale: top picks under $75It’s Nordstrom Half-Yearly Sale time and while many of the items are holiday-themed and those sort of trendy things that will look utterly passe by March, I dug through and found some real gems. Below, my picks from the Nordstrom Half-Yearly Sale (and all of them are under $75!):

Bags, Jewelry and other Accessories:

Clothing, Sleepwear, Athletic Wear, and Lingerie:

Shoes and Outerwear:

Did you shop the Nordstrom Half-Yearly Sale?  What items did you score during the promotion?

It’s Nordstrom Clearance Time: Best Apparel Sale Picks

Nordstrom has some of the GREATEST sales, and they’re pretty picky with the brands they offer so you know you can get some great pieces at great prices. They’re having a clearance on selected items through February 22nd, there’s so many amazing deals I couldn’t fit them all in one post. Today I’m sharing my picks for footwear deals at Nordstrom (see my top picks for shoes here):


I don’t know if it’s the weather or still being burned out from the holidays but I am all about easy dressing for the office. Drapey tops paired with pants with stretch are my jam, and Nordstrom has some great tops that are comfy while being stylish and work-friendly. I’ve already written about the awesome cashmere and basic deals available at Nordstrom and Lands’ End, so here I will focus on unique pieces that will make a statement even if they’re just paired with jeans or black pants. I find such sweaters get far more wear than my simple v-necks and crews. My picks on sale:

  • Pleione Shirred Shoulder Blouse: Available in regular and petite sizes and three prints, this top would look great untucked or tucked with trousers, tucked into a pencil skirt, worn under a blazer, or even paired with skinny jeans and tall boots for the weekend. I love the unique neckline. $38.40
  • ASTR Pleated Sleeveless Tunic: Wear now under a blazer or cardigan, wear come spring with work trousers and a pendant necklace, or pair with pumps and skinny jeans for Date Night. $33.60
  • Vince Camuto Faux Wrap Shirttail Blouse: I own this top in orange and adore it.  It’s one of the few drapey tops out there that is flattering on a large bust.  Regular and petite available. $35.55
  • Pleione Mixed Media Tunic: Four great colors to add spirit to your office neutrals, this blouse can be worn untucked with more narrow of trousers or tucked in and paired with pants and skirts. The look can dress up for the office or look great come Casual Friday with denim. Regular and petites available and reviews say this one fits busty figures well. $34.80
  • Sandra Engrish Two-Pocket Voile Tunic: A beautiful variety of colors, regular and petite sizes available. This is more for casual offices; reviews say if you’re petite you may be able to wear this as a short dress. Pair with leggings for the weekend and skinny trousers, boots, and a scarf for Casual Friday. The blue is my favorite. $39.90
  • Leith Side Tie Wrap Sweater: I have this in navy and love it. It’s long and runs big, but the quality is great and it’s a nice alternative to a cardigan or sweater tunic. I wear mine over a striped tee and pair with ponte skinny pants and boots. $38.40
  • Vince Camuto Boatneck Sweater: Horizontal ribbing and patch pockets make this sweater stand out from the crowd without looking too outlandish. Wear with everything from ponte leggings and tall boots to work trousers with ease. $35.90
  • Sejour Print Wool & Cashmere Sweater: Oh wow, this sweater!  Is that a leopard print? a Rorschach test?  Whatever it is, this black and white plus size sweater makes a statement while looking oh so elegant.  $82.80
  • Haute Hippie Cowl Neck Blouse: Clearance time is the time  buy all those brands you drool over but can’t usually afford.  For me, Haute Hippie is one of them.  This spectacular blue silk blouse makes such a statement.  For day slip a black or contrast color camisole underneath for modesty and come night pair with skinny jeans or black pants and heels to stun.  $176.98
  • Alex Evenings Plus Size Side Tie Blouse: This top is exactly what I’m talking about in my wardrobe staples.  You can pair with a black pencil skirt, trousers in ivory or black, a maxi skirt, or even a pair of jeans.  $88.80

Spring Coats

While the sale has plenty of winter coats available to prepare for next year, I’m most impressed by the lighter weight coats, especially trenches. I bought my DKNY trench during a Nordstrom clearance several years ago and it’s still worn all the time. It’s perfect for travel, misty days, and looks far nicer over a dress than a bulkier anorak.  But in these picks are some other great coats that will make a statement while keeping you warm and dry:

  • MICHAEL Michael Kors Trench Coat with Detachable Hood: The only thing missing from my trench is a hood. This coat, available in regular and petite sizes has that, along with classic lines and a shorter more flattering length. I adore the Dark Moss color which is an elegant neutral that is quite versatile (imagine with a hot pink scarf!). This coat will look great this spring and for many years to come. $104.98
  • MICHAEL Michael Kors Detachable Hood Trench Coat: Another from MMK, this one is a matte finish and has four different colors to choose from. While you can’t go wrong with black, safari, or khaki, the dark red is also a winner. Regular and petites available. $104.98
  • MICHAEL Michael Kors Detachable Liner Plus Size Trench: Same great colors and style of the last trench, but in plus sizes and with a very useful detachable liner for warmth.  $128.98
  • London Fog Double Breasted Trench with Detachable Liner: This is the kind of trench you buy now and will still be wearing a decade or two from now.  The detachable liner makes it even more versatile and this price is awesome for a quality wardrobe classic.  Two colors available. $98.98
  • Helene Berman Large Collar Faux Fur Coat: Gosh I love a leopard print that is a little bit unusual.  With the white ground in this print, the coat looks fresh, modern, chic, yet timeless.  What a statement, what a coat that will cause people to stop you on the street to comment on it! $238.80
  • Via Spiga ‘Scarpa’ Hooded Trench: What great colors! What nice style details! This is a gorgeous trench that will stand out from the pack without looking dated in a couple years. Regular and petite sizes, this trench gets rave reviews from Nordstrom customers. $129.90
  • Kenneth Cole New York Stand Collar Coat: Omigoodness how can you resist a pale pink jacket?  Also available in ivory, this coat’s modern cut and details make it a winner that will garner compliments and flatter jeans workwear, or dresses.  $129.90
  • Via Spiga Satin Belted Trench: Oh gosh Alison, not ANOTHER trench!  Seriously, though this coat has trench details it’s far more modern, chic, and dressy.  This is a badass coat that will elevate all your looks and work as a dress coat quite nicely.  Three colors available.  $139.90
  • MICHAEL Michael Kors Hooded Single Breasted Topper: For those who don’t like a belted trench, this is the coat for you.  Princess seaming and a half-belt in the back give this coat a flattering fit while still being a classic.  Red and navy available. $129.90
  • Treasure&Bond Leather Moto Jacket: A classic moto with a feminine fit and a unique but versatile color.  Reviews say this burgundy jacket is even more beautiful in person. $198.90
  • City Chic ‘Clean Cut’ Plus Size Coat: Gorgeous color, gorgeous cut.  This beautiful coat will look great with everything from your jeans to a LBD.  $89.97
  • Bernardo Leather Scuba Jacket: A chic moto from a brand I own and love for its amazing quality and fit.  Great fit, while the black is classic the cognac is a gorgeous alternative that will look so nice with denim but also paired over a sheath dress.  This is the type of jacket that could become your signature.  Regular and petite sizes available. $299.90
  • Ace Delivery Leopard Print Topper: This jacket is like a hybrid of my pink topper and leopard Talbots coat and is likely just as versatile as those two. $92.46

Dresses and Jumpsuits

Now’s the time to buy those dresses for all the spring and summer weddings, and get a great deal on festive pieces that will work year-round. My favorites:

  • Myne ‘Heidi’ Silk Dress: Omigoodness Omigoodness this is the dress I bought that makes me feel like a Grecian goddess and now it’s on sale for under $200!  Go get it! $166.80
  • Ellen Tracy Knot Waist Stretch Crepe Dress: This is the perfect dress.  The style can dress up or down for anything from the office to an evening affair, the cut and fabric can work year round, and the material is travel-friendly and wrinkle-resistant.  Oh, and the knot detail whittless the waist and creates and hourglass shape!  $70.80
  • MICHAEL Michael Kors Studded Sleeve Boatneck Jersey Jumpsuit: The stretchy fabric and hidden back zip of this plus size jumpsuit means you can actually use the bathroom (a rarity for many jumpsuits). The studded detail on the arms isn’t too flashy, just the right bit of bling. $101.98
  • Gabby Skye Plus Size Jacquard Fit and Flare Dress: This is one of those perfect dresses you can dress up or down. For work with a cardigan and pumps, for a wedding with strappy heels and some sparkle, or even for the weekend with flats and a ponytail. $52.80
  • Calvin Klein Embellished Matte Jersey Plus Size Jumpsuit: I swear, this should be the only fabric that jumpsuits are made in because it doesn’t cling but it stretches enough to make it easy to slip on and off.  The shoulder detail really takes it up a notch. $74.40
  • Felicity & Coco Popover Jacquard Dress: Adore the faux two-piece look, it’s quite flattering and hints to a current trend without making it passe in a season.  The navy/black pattern is quite versatile and would lovely at a wedding, date, or next winter at a holiday party.  Regular and petite sizes.  $70.80
  • Adrianna Papell Sequin Mesh Sheath: Do you know how many times I wish I had a dress like this in my closet?  New Year’s Eve party, black tie wedding, company holiday party this year at a fancy location, formal night on a cruise… I could go on./  I love the two non-black colors available, that it doesn’t cling, and that it could work year-round.  Regular and petites available. $118.80

It’s Nordstrom Clearance Time: Best Shoe Sale Picks

Nordstrom has some of the GREATEST sales, and they’re pretty picky with the brands they offer so you know you can get some great pieces at great prices. They’re having a clearance on selected items through February 22nd, there’s so many amazing deals I couldn’t fit them all in one post. Today I’m sharing my picks for footwear deals at Nordstrom:

  • Blondo ‘Elenor’ Waterproof Riding Boot: Classic style, beautiful leather, and a waterproofed finish means you can splash and hit slush without fear. It’s rare to find boots of this quality and type under $200 and the reviews are positive if you have an average to slim calf. $199.90
  • Lucky Brand ‘Hibiscus’ Boot: A gorgeous classic riding boot in three colors that will transition beautifully into spring. This is an extended calf version that stretches to fit a 16” circumference leg. This also comes in regular sizes in three other classic colors. $139.98
  • Via Spiga ‘Nino’ Sandal: This is a classic yet chic shoe that can work now with tights (yes, you can wear open toes with opaque tights) and come spring and summer with everything from flirty frocks to your favorite pair of jeans. Fantastic reviews on a shoe that will look sharp now and for many seasons to come, and this is an awesome price for this brand. $112.49
  • Jessica Simpson ‘Claudette’ Pump: I’m a sucker for a leopard calfhair pump, and when it has a pointy toe and a relatively wearable heel height (4”) I’m in love. Even better when the price is this nice. $59.37
  • Via Spiga ‘Darby’ Wedge Pump: A wedge is far more comfortable than a pump, and this elegant wedge would look right at home with your work outfits as well as styled with a skirt. Classic black polished leather, almond toe, and a covered heel makes this an elegant wardrobe staple. Again, a stellar price for this quality brand. $116.98
  • Vince Camuto ‘Effel’ Sandal: I have this shoe and adore it; I wore it more than any other shoe this past spring and summer and know it will be the same this year. It’s very comfortable and looks great with dresses as well as pants. Three colors and wide widths available and a nicer price than what I paid! $79.90
  •  Isaac Mizrahi ‘Lamis’ Pump: An elegant pump in an array of great colors and textures. A natural patent begging to freshen up your frocks and peek out of light-colored trousers this spring and some fun colors to add spirit to your basic black and neutrals. $94.90
  • Cole Haan ‘Carlyle’ Boot: This sleek heeled boot is the type of item you never feel you can justify, but once you have it in your wardrobe you’ll be wearing all the darn time. Elegant, stylish, a wearable heel height; pair these with work skirts and dresses or slip over leggings for a great night out look. These will be chic for many years to come and this is a fantastic price for Cole Haan boots. $198.98
  • Ivanka Trump ‘Sophia’ Pump: This is the type of pump that never goes out of style; these five colors work now, can work come spring with a lighter dress (imagine the green with cream or ivory!), and will still be stylish come next year. At this price, it’s worth it to invest now. $65.96
  • Louise et Cie ‘Kingcale’ Boot: What an elegant and timeless boot! The elastic back keeps it comfortable and from looking too ordinary. This is the kind of boot you can wear all fall and winter, over leggings and skinny jeans and with skirts. Two classic colors available to make these a wardrobe staple now and next fall. $176.96
  • Frye ‘Erin’ Chelsea Boot: I mentioned this boot multiple times in advice posts this winter, but it was always a bit outside my price comfort zone even though I knew they were a classic style and a brand that has proven time and time again to be great quality. Well now they’re on sale! Get your Chelsea boot fix at a very nice price. $172.77
  • MICHAEL Michael Kors ‘Cameron’ Sandal: There’s just something about this heeled sandal that calls out to me. It has a funky modern edge that is unique, but not too trendy. The strapping and platform heel make it stable and secure. It’s hefty enough to be styled with denim or pants but also look great with an LBD. I can’t decide which of the colors I like most. $86.96

While I shared just these, it doesn’t mean they are the only great deals going on at Nordstrom. Many I loved I didn’t list because they didn’t have enough of a size range left, or because they were too specific a style. Do check the whole selection and narrow down by your shoe size for there’s some great deals on comfort brands, athletic shoes, and tons of boots of every size and style. Happy shopping!

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale: What I Bought and What You Should Get!

I love Nordstrom. Great selection of brands and sizes, great customer service in stores and online, free shipping and returns, and when I worked retail it was the most serene place in a mall. My morning coffee drink came from their Espresso Bar, my afternoon salad from their Café, and my shoe wardrobe and made up face from their fabulous staff on the main floor. I got rid of all my store credit cards years ago but held onto my Nordstrom card because of the perks. Reward notes for cash off purchases, free alterations, exclusive in-store events… and early entry to the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale which starts July 18th!

Last Thursday I shopped the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale early, but in a different frame of mind from previous years. Usually I use it as Back to School shopping, plotting out my personal style and wardrobe for the upcoming seasons, choosing pieces that will become signature. My blue leather and green leather jackets and my pleated leather skirt are all previous Anniversary Sale purchases.

But this year? I’m going to work as much as I can with what I already have. I think back and really LIKE what I already own, so I only need a couple things to fill holes and incorporate a couple trends. So here’s what I purchased:

halogen flared ponte skirt bp print tassel trim poncho
dkny lace curves shaping brief nordstrom logo tea towel

  • Halogen Flared Ponte Skirt: I bought a similar ponte skirt from Halogen last year and wore the HECK out of it.  So much, it’s covered with pills and stretched out.  At only $29.90 I figured I could splurge on a replacement.
  • BP. Print Tassel Trim Poncho: I’ll buy a whole wardrobe of great work and going out clothes and then realize I’m freezing and have to take Emerson to dance class or just want to throw on a layer when watching TV.  Depending on the quality and fit, this could also be a Casual Friday look with a merino sweater, jeans and boots.  Only $24.90.
  • DKNY Lace Curves Shaping Brief: I love these things, they don’t suck in as much as Spanx, but smooth the belly enough for slightly clingy dresses and to give a good shape with skirts and trousers.  They’re comfortable and cute too!  The lace back prevents VPL.  With one arm, I’ve ended up stretching out my black one so I’m getting a replacement at the $13.90 sale price.
  • Nordstrom Heritage Collection Logo Tea Towel: I DID say I loved Nordstrom!  I also love dish towels, and apple green is one of the accent colors in my kitchen.  At just $6.70 I couldn’t resist!

That’s not to say there aren’t a heck of a lot of other amazing items that are part of the sale, just things I don’t need right now. However these guys caught my eye for being great deals (all under $100), great staples, or great pieces to update your wardrobe for the fall and winter.  Catch them while they’re still available!

Wardrobe Basics:

Accessory Updates:

  • Cara Spike Hinge Cuff: I’ve been wearing the heck out of my Rebecca Minkoff cuff (also on sale!) which is a similar concept.  This one is available in silver, gold, and hematite and on sale for $17.90.
  • Kendra Scott “Deanna” Pendant Necklace: An elegant and classic necklace that looks hip now but stylish for years to come.  Available in six different colors, on sale for $51.90.
  • Halogen ‘Marlie’ Calf Hair Pointy Toe Pump: Gosh I wanted to justify buying these shoes!  However, I already own a very similar pair.  I own a pair of Halogen shoes and find them pretty decent quality and they hold up well.  Two leopard prints to choose from plus berry and black.  $59.90
  • Tasha Chain Mesh Collar Necklace: I was THISCLOSE to buying this myself, and will likely regret not snagging it.  Totally badass, available in gold, hematite, and silver and on sale for $37.90
  • Hobo ‘Zara’ Patent Leather Crossbody: My sister has this bag and it’s the perfect size to carry all your need without bulk; it’s become her Night Out bag and I’m tempted to snag one for myself.  Black, Camel, Red, and on sale for $64.90.
  • Halogen Leather Crossbody Bag: I love a good leather bag that’s free of logos and trendy details.  This bag is one you can have an enjoy for many years without looking dated.  Black, blue, and camel on sale for $78.90.
  • Louise et Cie ‘Azalya’ Mini Wedge Flat: Gray leopard calfhair with a cute bow detail, a tiny wedge that makes it even nicer for the office.  Medium and wide widths available. $69.90
  • BP. ‘Burton’ Moto Boot: A cool looking knee-high leather boot under $100.  $89.90

Incorporating New Trends and Silhouettes:

  • Bellatrix Faux Wrap Front Blouse: I’ve written before about draped tops, and I think they’re great on their own, or under a blazer.  I have a Bellatrix blouse and find the quality nice; this top comes in basic black and five fun prints and is on sale for $39.90.
  • Chelsea28 Fit & Flare Skirt: Another item I was THISCLOSE to purchasing.  The midi skirt is still hot for fall, and looks so cute with simple sweaters.  The creamy color will modernize the black and gray currently in your closet.  $58.90
  • Vince Camuto Lace Panel Cardigan (Plus): So simple, but the lace detail really takes your outfit up a notch.  $88.90
  • KUT from the Kloth ‘Lincoln’ Faux Leather Drape Front Jacket: A great way to jazz up weekend knits or wear as a soft jacket to the office.  It also gets good reviews on the site.  Available in black and chocolate and on sale for $59.90.
  • Foxcroft Graphic Jaquard Cardigan (Plus): I love the preppy print and can see it on the weekend with a Breton tee and jeans and at work with a simple shell and trousers.  I have a Foxcroft cardigan and find them very well made. $76.90
  • Halogen Leather Front Shell:  Buy this for me, because I want it soooo bad! Pair with jeans, a pleated chiffon skirt, a pencil skirt, under a cream blazer.  Regular and petite sizes, $98.90.
  • Sejour ‘Metropolitan’ Faux Leather Front Peplum Top (Plus): Ignore how it says peplum, it’s more of a fit and flare.  This top could be paired with a pencil skirt for work or rocked for evening with black skinny pants or dark jeans and heels.  $78.90

My Picks: Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

nordstrom-anniversary-sale1The Nordstrom Anniversary sale is here! This is my favorite time of year to shop because the deals are so good and you can’t usually find the same pieces come fall. I always use this sale to get leather goods, higher-end sweaters, blazers and jackets, and to stock up on essentials like tights and underpinnings. As a Nordstrom Cardholder I can shop now; for those who don’t have the card you can apply to shop immediately or check out a preview and make a wishlist for July 17th. Some of the things that have caught my eye:

Leather Love

I know some don’t love leather like I do, so go ahead and keep scrolling. But this is by far my favorite part of the Anniversary Sale and the one category where I have seen awesome styles and they have sold out before the sale has even ended. If any look good to you, order ASAP before they’re gone!

  • Halogen is my go-to for buttery soft leather in styles that are on trend by wearable for more than a season. This skirt is a perfect example. Black leather, a-line, with a front pleat, this is the kind of leather skirt you could wear to the office. Style with a cashmere turtleneck, a silk blouse, or even a chunky cableknit. $164.90 is an insanely great price especially since I know Halogen leather skirts (I own two). Leather stretches, if unsure size down. May take a wear or two at home to stretch to its final perfect size. The same skirt is available in plus up to 24W for $185.90.
  • I am dying over this leather “trucker” jacket from Treasure&Bond. I’m a sucker for leather jackets inspired by their denim cousins, and I’m having a hard time choosing whether the black or the olive is the best color choice. Can’t resist such a cute leather jacket for under $200!
  • Oh wow, this leather sheath dress from Halogen is gorgeous! A few knit panels to give a great shape, a classic fit but an interesting asymmetrical seam and front slit keep it from looking ordinary. Winterize it with a cashmere sweater coat and opaque tights, style it over a think knit turtleneck, or rock it with booties and a denim jacket. Under $200 and available in petite and regular sizes up to 16.
  • I have a camel leather jacket and love how it’s as versatile as black but a bit softer, more elegant. This collarless leather jacket from Halogen could replace a blazer for the office and would look quite chic paired with cream and gray, yet also work for the weekend with jeans. I have a Halogen leather jacket and it’s soft, well made, and looks far more expensive than even its regular sale price. Regular and petite sizes up to XL/16 and under $200.
  • Another collarless leather jacket from Halogen, but this one is trimmed in suede for a completely different look. In brown or black, this jacket too can transition from the office to the weekend to a night out with ease. Regular and petites up to XL under $200.  The same jacket is available in black in plus sizes 14-24 for $225.90.
  • I have wanted a drape collar leather jacket like this one from Trouve for quite a while. I have many pieces from Trouve and think they have great style and shape. Now whether to get it in black, camel, or gray! Ribbed sleeve panels provide a comfortable fit, and make this a jacket that could work great in place of a blazer or cardigan. Usually $328, on sale for less than $220.
  • Gosh I love this dress from Sejour – leather bodice with a cute little collar and a softly pleated chiffon skirt. That perfect mix of tough and sweet! Available in two colors and available in sizes 14W-24W, it’s amazing to find real leather in a dress for less than $170! Switch up the look by adding an obi-inspired or wide belt in a contrast color!
  • Another great piece from Halogen is this mixed media shell. Leather front and sides, ponte knit back with exposed zipper, and crepe-like shirttail. A top like this makes any bottom suddenly a chic outfit. Wear with jeans and a pair of pumps for a night out, style with an ivory or white pantsuit for a super chic ensemble, wear over a white collared shirt, style for three seasons of the year with ease and I bet each time you wear it people will compliment it. $99.90.
  • This leather pencil skirt has cool zip details that are black like the skirt so it doesn’t look too wild to be styled for a more creative office. Wear for Date Night with a crepe or silk tee, for work with opaque tights and booties. By Halogen, this skirt is $164.90 yet looks far more expensive and will be a statement in your closet for years to come. Regular and petite sizes up to 16.


Now is the time to get that versatile dress that you can wear to your company’s networking cocktail event, a holiday party, or an evening wedding. Choose well, switch up accessories, and likely you can attend every event on your social calendar with one frock!

  • This is a jumpsuit, not a dress but it’s really easy to dress up and down like a frock. How do I know? I own it, and you can see me wear it here. $85.90 is a steal, says the woman who has worn hers to a 40th birthday, a wedding, a date night, a bachelorette party, and a blogger event.  Oh, and you can pee in it!
  • This black crepe dress from Eliza J is simple, classic, and flattering without being boring. Cap sleeves make it appropriate year-round, strategic seaming and an exposed back zipper add interest, and it’s fully lined to give great drape. A true desk to drinks dress with a quick change of accessories, and under $100.
  • This seamed ponte dress from Halogen is perfection. The short sleeves make it work now and can also transition to fall, the v-neck makes it flattering under cardigans and blazers, and the great seaming whittles the waist. Regular and petite up to 16 and four colors to choose from for $65.90.
  • I love the scalloped neck and sleeves of this crepe dress from Adrianna Papell and love how this could be worn to the office or dressed up with accessories for an evening affair. Under $95 and in plus sizes 14-24.
  • Don’t you step on my blue suede… dress? OMG hot hot hot! Gorgeous color, and super flattering fit and flare shape. How cute would this be with a crisp white shirt underneath? Or a black knit turtleneck and opaque tights? From Sejour in plus sizes 14-24 and while it’s usually around $350 right now it’s on sale for $232.90.
  • This fit and flare dress is a must. The fabric can go from day to night, summer to winter with ease. Fully lined, available in two great colors, regular and petite is $104.90, the plus size version is $111.90.
  • Almost every gal looks great in a wrap dress; this one has plenty of fabric at the neckline to prevent showing too much, an adjustable waist for a custom fit, comes in three colors and costs less than $80. The plus size version comes only in black for $84.90 and in my opinion, looks better on this model than the smaller sized one.


Now is the time to buy those fall and winter shoes you’ll need. Boots are at a steep discount during this sale and while the idea of wearing them now may sound dreadful, you’ll be glad to have them in your closet come October!

  • The Vince Camuto ‘Maves’ bootie is the perfect sort boot to slip over leggings or skinny jeans, pair with cuffed boyfriend jeans, or slip under bootcuts. Wood heel, suede finish, and four colors available makes this the perfect weekend shoe. On sale for $104.90, I am partial to the olive which would look gorgeous against denim!
  • The ‘Clara’ bootie from MICHAEL Michael Kors has a leg-lengthening pointed toe, 3” slender heel, cool zipper detail and would look great with skirts, trousers, as well as denim. On sale for $119.90.
  • A really nice full grain leather boot from Lucky Brand, three colors available, and on sale under $140. I could see the ‘Heloisse’ being a boot I’d reach for almost every day all winter long.
  • Aquatalia makes utterly gorgeous and elegant leather boots that are also waterproof. Their footwear is an investment, but a wise one when dealing with rain, snow, and slush of the colder months. Their ‘Gianna’ in black calf leather is classic, sophisticated, and incredibly versatile. Slip over leggings or skinny jeans, pair with a pencil skirt, or wear under a ‘70s-inspired midi skirt.
  • If you find most wellies and tall rain boots too tight for your calves, a shortie boot like this one from Hunter is perfect. I have a similar boot and like the ability to wear under dress pants or tuck in my jeans. I like that these are under $150 and a subtle classic color that won’t stand out.
  • Hello, beautiful. I adore these knee-high riding boots from Louise et Cie. Gorgeous leather in two colors, an elegant classic style, and little details like a metal rand… it’s crazy to have these available for less than $180!
  • The Frye ‘Harness’ has been a chic boot for many years and will be for many to come. The ‘Carson Harness’ is a mid-calf in distressed cognac leather that is just so yummy. $259.90 is a great price for a great boot you’ll wear for many years.
  • A waterproof snowboot under $65 and named after a great Maryland city? I couldn’t NOT include it! The ‘Baltimore’ from Kamik will have you ready for whatever Mother Nature throws our way this winter; take your choice of gray or black.

Coats and Jackets

While you may be sweating while reading this, before you know it there will be a chill in the air. Prepare by buying now on sale and on trend for the fall and winter.

  • This baby from MICHAEL Michael Kors is pretty much the perfect trenchcoat. Single breasted to better flatter, detachable hood with a drawcord to keep you dry even on blustery days, removeable liner to control your warmth, machine washable and dryable, available in four colors and regular and petite sizes up to XL. On sale for $129.90 when regularly goes for more than $200.
  • This ponte knit coat from Vince Camuto has a vintage vibe and would make for the perfect fall topper. Available in ivory and a gorgeous traffic-stopping vermillion with bold black buttons, this would look great on the weekend with denim but also quite lovely over dresses and skirts; on sale for less than $200 yet it looks far more expensive.
  • Doesn’t everyone need a leopard print faux fur coat? This collarless style from Steve Madden would look downtown cool with jeans but also work as a topper over cocktail dresses. Less than $100 and sizes up to XL.  Also available in plus sizes for under $120.
  • I wasn’t sure where to put this lined topper from Halogen. It could be a lightweight jacket for fall, paired with a pashmina. It could be a casual blazer for the office, styled with slimmer trousers and a silk blouse. Or it could be worn on the weekend in place of a sweater coat, styled with a Breton tee and jeans. All that versatility, available in five colors and regular and petite sizes up to XL/16 and under $90.
  • A lighter-weight and more classic trench than the MICHAEL Michael Kors one, this trench from Trouve is simple and elegant and begging to be worn on those days that need just a light layer. Three awesome colors and a hint of stretch make this under $100 jacket a must-see.
  • Packable down outerwear is my jam; it’s lightweight, it can stand a beating, yet it still keeps you toasty warm. This water-repellant packable down sweater jacket from Patagonia comes in four colors and is begging to be stuffed in your carryon for a cold-weather getaway. You can feel better about your down purchase knowing that it’s made with ethically sourced goose down that’s 100% traceable from birds that are never live-plucked and never force-fed. Regularly $229, on sale for $170.90.
  • More packable down, this time with a hood and some bum coverage. I have outerwear from Bernardo and they’re well-made and well-shaped to flatter a woman’s curves. This is a mix of down and PrimaLoft, is machine washable, and under $150.  The plus size version is $179.90.

Office Basics

Trousers, skirts, blouses, and jackets are always needed, might as well stock up while the prices are nice. With a sale like this you can get higher-end pieces for reasonable prices or spend less on favorite brands to save up for custom tailoring!

  • These stretch wool trousers from Lafayette 148 New York are classic elegance. Available in regular and petite sizes up to 18 and in five different colors, they are usually $238 but on sale for less than $160. My experience with this brand is the quality usually lives up to the pricetag and the cuts are trendless making them a wardrobe staple for seasons to come.
  • Raving reviews for pants appropriate for the office yet as comfortable as loungewear AND on sale for under $50? Sign me up! The ponte knit ankle pants from Vince Camuto come in regular and petite sizes up to 16 and two classic colors.
  • The Halogen Seamed Pencil Skirt has been a Nordstrom Anniversary Sale staple for many years and for good reason. The skirt is awesome. I have it in two colors and find it to be of great quality and fit. Regular and petite sizes up to 16 and seven colors to choose from all under $50.
  • It’s hard to find a great work pant in petite plus, even harder to find one that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. This pant from Sejour comes in 14W-24W petite and regular lengths and five colors.
  • Another great basic work pant is the ‘Taylor’ from Halogen. Halogen also offers a variety of pieces in their ‘Taylor’ collection throughout the year, often on sale, so you can pull together a good variety of jackets and bottoms that mix and match nicely. These pants have a nice smooth wide waistband that isn’t bulky under fitted untucked knits; available in five colors and petite and regular sizes, right now on sale for less than $50.
  • Pleione makes budget-friendly and figure-flattering tops great for the office and this wrap-style one is no different. Seven different colors and prints available up to XL/16 and only $42.90.
  • Wide leg-flat front trousers look great with soft floaty blouses and fitted knits. These from Chelsea28 give the Katharine Hepburn vibe in three classic colors and one gorgeous teal that is begging to be in my closet. $58.90.

Casual Looks

Jeans, tees, and sweaters are weekend mainstays. Save on these casual classics and add some new fall and winter trends to your closet!

  • You can see me wearing the Paley Bootcut jeans from JAG in this post; to score these under $50 is a fabulous deal. Regular and petite up to size 16; my experience is these run a bit loose so if in doubt size down.
  • I also have the Peri Straight Leg jean from JAG and also love the pull-on waistband, quality denim, and comfortable fit. These run a bit more true to size, especially if you have sturdy thighs like me. Also available in regular and petite sizes up to 16 and also on sale under $50.
  • I have a pair of Lysse leggings and think they’re amazing. Really high quality, completely opaque even if you bend over, a high rise that prevents muffin top, and comfortable tummy control. They wash great, mine have been thrown even in the dryer with jeans and they still are richly colored and free of pills. Five colors and fits up to a size 18.
  • Gosh I am loving this open cashmere cardigan from Nordstrom. It’s very similar to many pieces I have in my winter wardrobe that get so much wear – style for the office, wear with jeans for the weekend, use as a topper over dresses on chilly nights, and grab it to snuggle on the couch on a chilly evening. Four colors available and hello quality cashmere under $100!
  • Last winter I LIVED in my puffer vest; while it was great on brisk fall days it often was just part of my winter outfit, adding warmth plus style. Considering switching it out this year for a faux shearling for the same concept but more of a ski lodge vibe, wearing over cableknits and plaid flannels. This one from Two by Vince Camuto is darling and the $112.90 price is nice for a brand I’ve come to know for quality.  Also available in plus sizes.
  • My friend swears by Citizens of Humanity jeans as being some of the best quality and fit she has ever experienced. Their ‘Arielle’ jean is a mid-rise skinny in a great color that will become a denim favorite; usually priced over $200 these jeans are on sale for $138.90.
  • Loungewear with style, my utter favorite. Sure we all want to hang out in sweats, but it’s extra nice when those sweats have a cool cut, fit, or detail. This oversized turtleneck tunic from Madison & Berkeley is just that, with a funky high/low shirttail hem (great for pairing with leggings) and a slouchy neck. Four color available for just $31.90.
  • I love NYDJ, and the ‘Billie’ mini bootcut jean is a classic and flattering cut. In a crisp dark wash, this is a must-have in your wardrobe. 14W – 24W for less than $90.


Control garments, bras, undies, tights, and socks… now is the time to buy them at incredible prices. Luckily most of the items on sale have plenty of reviews to help you choose well, but don’t be afraid to branch out and try new brands as Nordstrom offers free shipping and free returns!

  • I always stock up on socks during the Nordstrom Anniversary sale and in previous years I have bought these exact knee socks. They’re soft, durable, hold their shape, hold their color, and the long length keeps them from sliding down (and also adds a bit more warmth in winter). Four colors to choose from and only $5.90 a pair.
  • The DKNY ‘Lace Curves’ Shaping Brief is my very favorite every day control garment. It’s very subtle control, just smooths, comfortable all day, doesn’t cling to fabrics, and the retro style is far prettier than all the “scary pants” on the market. Every Anniversary Sale I buy another in each color to replace those that stretched out with multiple wears throughout the year. $13.90
  • The Hanky Panky Retro Thong is the only thong I wear. The “retro” fit makes it a higher rise, which makes it sit nicely on my hips, not roll under my belly, and not give a mega wedgie. Oh, and it’s also super pretty. $17.90, I always pick up one or two each sale.
  • The Hanky Panky Retro Vikini is a similar fit to the thong, but with a full back. It’s super comfortable and sexier than solid briefs. This is my everyday underwear that goes under jeans and dresses; when sale comes around I snag a couple in fun colors. $21.90.


The sale has a ton of gorgeous bags on sale, as well as jewelry, scarves and more. Below are my personal faves:

  • I love my Mini M.A.C. from Rebecca Minkoff; the perfect size to carry all your essentials, transitions from shoulder to crossbody bag with ease, and I think the quality is quite good. Black and ash available in the quilted style for under $150.
  • This cuff from Nordstrom comes in silver and gold and looks a LOT like my silver cuff, but for less than $40! I own Nordstrom costume jewelry and the quality is stellar.
  • I’m a sucker for fringe, especially for a bag. This suede bucket from Patricia Nash comes in two soft neutrals and is big enough to hold all your necessary purse contents without being a burden. Interior and exterior pockets and an adjustable crossbody strap; style it with boots and a little dress for a night out, or a chunky cream sweater and jeans for the weekend. Regularly priced around $200, on sale for $132.90.
  • The M.A.B. tote from Rebecca Minkoff is a classic, and a bag I regularly recommend to those looking for a stylish work tote. Enough room for a laptop without weighing a ton, low on hardware and logos to look great for years to come, and currently on sale for less than $200.
  • I love Brahmin bags, and I cannot lie. This wallet is for to die (sorry, I was on a roll….). I love the blue but the other colors are quite lovely too. Plenty of space for all your cards while remaining streamlined and remaining under $60.
  • And if you’d like a bag to match your lovely Brahmin wallet, their ‘West Lake’ crossbody is a perfect size, clean simple look, and on sale for less than $150.
  • Oh this scarf from Kate Spade is so pretty, it’s a statement piece that would transform most any look or winter coat. The beige/white/black version is quite versatile but the Aster is a delicious color that would add a cheery note to fall and winter looks and complement brights as well as neutrals. Usually almost $100, on sale for $64.90.
  • Nothing nicer to snuggle up to on a cold winter day than cashmere! This oversized cashmere scarf from Nordstrom comes in three classic colors and will fill up the collar of your coat with plenty to wrap around your face against the chill. Regularly almost $200, on sale for $129.90. I own Nordstrom cashmere scarves and find them very high quality and quite durable.
  • This beaded multi-cord necklace from Tasha is pretty awesome and would make any outfit of basics look like a creative ensemble. Available in five different colors and only $31.90.
  • A popular designer has a clutch almost identical to this one and the same price is in the hundreds; get the look for less with this one from Halogen for only $64.90 and have your pick of three great colors.

Nordstrom Winter Clearance Sale: Best Fashion, Shoes, and More

My Picks from the Nordstrom Winter Clearance Sale - Wardrobe OxygenWith up to 40% off there’s some awesome deals during Nordstrom’s sale, which is on until February 21st. While there’s plenty of winter stuff they’re trying to get off their hands, there’s also lots of fashion that works now and into the spring and summer and pieces that will be stylish now and a year from now. I already shared my picks from the Nordstrom Winter Clearance Sale for plus size fashion; this post features my picks from shoes, bags, and standard-sized fashion:


Jackets, Blazers, and Outerwear

  • I have the longer version of this packable jacket from Bernardo and love how it’s lightweight but still keeps me toasty warm. It also is shaped for a woman’s figure so you don’t end up resembling the Michelin Man. Regular and petite sizes, two colors to choose from, and 50% off.
  • For those like me who are always on the hunt for petite leather jackets that won’t be too long in the arms, this Bernardo leather jacket is a great choice. Classic styling and shape, two colors, and petite sizes available. 50% off and a great price for real leather!
  • A statement coat is always a nice addition to the outerwear wardrobe and this clutch coat from Helene Berman fits the bill. I love the fuzzy texture and the bold black and ivory stripes; it would look chic with a sweater and jeans and so smart over a brightly colored frock! On sale half off.
  • I always suggest trenchcoats during sale picks but that’s when I got my DKNY one that I wear like crazy and have for almost a decade. It’s such a good purchase, and this one from Halogen is a classic style, has a detachable hood, comes in three colors, regular and petite sizes. 33% off AND machine washable!
  • The Hinge ‘Expedition’ jacket is a modern take on the utility jacket. Available in navy and olive and with a flattering shape, this is a casual jacket that can replace your denim jacket and look great with a tee and jeans or slipped over a sundress in spring. 33% off and less than $60!
  • A classic leather moto jacket in unexpected colors. This leather jacket from Truth & Pride comes in fire engine red or cobalt blue, gets good reviews, and is on sale 55% off.
  • I try to keep my picks to items with a decent size selection. This cape from Finders Keepers isn’t one of those but it’s so utterly cool I had to share it anyway. Only available in a Medium/4-6 and maybe that’s a good thing because if it came in my size I’d likely buy it! On sale 40% off.


  • My sister has the ‘Baily’ from Vince Camuto and adores it. Perfect size, design, shape. This bag is on sale 40% off in two statement finishes that would look great in winter and through the summer.
  • I’m not a huge fan of bags with visible logos, but this mini satchel from Kate Spade is such a perfect combination of shape, texture, and color I’m making an exception. It’s also pretty nice to get it at 40% off.
  • I’ve been in love with this fringed Milly handbag for a year and was torn between the orange and this silver metallic version. Now that the silver is on sale for less than $200 I may have to take the plunge!
  • A bucket bag is a classic shape for a purse; this one from Rebecca Minkoff gives a rock and roll vibe with the lacing and buckles but the black metal hardware keeps it from being too extreme and provides elegance. This is a chic bag that would add a cool touch to many wardrobes and the under $175 price is super nice.
  • This tumbled faux leather tote from Halogen has a clean timeless shape and look but the contrast tassel detail makes it modern. Two colors available, plenty of room to hold all you need to carry, and on sale for less than $25.
  • How fun is this black beaded fringe clutch purse from Natasha Couture? This would glam up any dress in your closet and make even a simple tank and jeans look ready for a night out on the town. On sale 40% off which makes it less than $50!


  • I shared this dress as an alternative to the Issa for Banana Republic dress I wore a couple weeks ago and now it’s on sale for a hair over $70. I’ve owned Many Maggy London dresses over the years and they are always a great fit and great quality.
  • The perfect sheath dress! This elegant dress from Classiques Entier is of Italian ponte, comes in two colors, and is on sale 40% off.
  • Super flattering, super modern, but something that would be at home in the workplace. I want to style this navy and white ponte knit wrap dress from Classiques Entier with a pair of heels in some dramatic color like orange, though this would look so chic under a white blazer with pumps or ankle booties. On sale 50% off.
  • This simple tee-shirt swing dress from Socialite isn’t anything fancy, but the perfect throw-on dress for summer weekends, to wear as a bathing suit cover-up, or even as a nightshirt. At $20.40 and with five colors to choose from, you can find many reasons to add one of these into your closet.
  • This chiffon surplice gown from Paper Crown is the type of piece you don’t think you need but end up wearing all the time. Envision it with gold hoops and metallic flat sandals. With a denim jacket. With a long strand of pearls and heels. With a wide beaded belt. The dark red color works all year round and can better dress down with brown or tan leather. 40% off (other colors are still full price).
  • This pleated crepe sheath dress from Adrianna Papell doesn’t have a lot of sizes left, but I still had to share it because it’s so pretty, so flattering, so versatile. Two colors, regular and petite sizes, and on sale for a bit under $72.
  • This isn’t a dress, but it’s the only skirt in my picks so I stuck it here and since I wrote the post I can write the rules! Anyway, this tea length taffeta skirt is from Monique Lhuillier’s Bridesmaids line but it’s perfect for non-wedding days. Consider my formalwear capsule post to get some ideas on how to rock it for a multitude of social occasions, but don’t be afraid to pair with a band tee, a tank and denim shirt, a turtleneck sweater and tights. Four colors to choose from. The sale price makes it cheaper than other retailers who sell such skirts as everyday fashion!

Sweaters, Cardigans, Ponchos, and Ruanas

Jeans, Pants, and Leggings

Blouses, Shirts, Tops, and Tees

  • I have never been disappointed by Nordstrom Collection – luxury fabrics, excellent fit, beautiful craftsmanship. However, I can’t afford it except during Nordstrom clearance sales like this one. This crisp and classic white shirt looks perfect and is on sale 55% off.
  • I love a lightweight striped tee with a scoop neck – great under sweaters, blazers, cardigans, tucked into skirts, or worn with skinny jeans and boots. And when it’s on sale for a bit over $10? Can’t resist!
  • This pleat-front tank from Ellen Tracy is all about the detail. Simple white shell for work or dressing up, but the pleat detail makes it elegant. And on sale for less than $42 makes it a great buy!


THIS IS THE TIME! This is the time of year when I get all my high quality cashmere from Nordstrom. While their Halogen brand is pretty budget-friendly year round, this is the sale when you can get their higher-end Nordstrom Collection and other designer brands for much much less. Stock is low, so I apologize in advance if your size is out but congratulate you if you get a great cashmere score!

Plus Size Picks from the Nordstrom Clearance Sale

Plus SIze Picks from the Nordstrom Winter Clearance Sale - Wardrobe OxygenWhen I do sale pick posts, I usually mix all sizes together because I think it’s crap that larger sizes are separated (and usually hidden in the corner of a store if existent at all).  Also many of you Wardrobe Oxygen readers are cusp sized and shop from both departments.  However, when perusing the Nordstrom Winter Clearance sale I was impressed by the plus size options and found so many it warranted a separate post.  How refreshing to be able to make an entire post of great fashion in sizes 12W and up from a department store!  My picks, separated by category:


  • A pretty floral wrap dress from Adriana Papell for work and for weekends. This is a print that will take you from the office to a date to a daytime wedding with ease and is 40% off.
  • A pretty lacy frock from Eliza J to wear to all your weddings this spring and summer. Pair with nude or a soft metallic heel. Consider switching out the belt for a different color or even a grosgrain ribbon in a contrast color. 40% off.
  • I love the flapper vibe of this beaded dress from Pisarro Nights; the navy color makes it work year round and the under $100 sale price makes it a great buy for weddings, cocktail parties, holiday fetes and everything else that may pop up on your 2016 social calendar!
  • A classic wrap dress in two perfect colors; this is the type of piece that can easily dress up or down with a quick change of accessories. The fabric makes it perfect for travel and wearable three seasons of the year. 40% off from MYNT 1792.
  • What a gorgeous black and white print wrap dress! I love how the print changes size as it goes toward the hem and is different on the belt. From Adriana Papell and on sale 40% off.
  • A super pretty printed shantung fit and flare dress from Gabby Skye that is begging to be worn to your next social occasion. The color story makes matching shoes and bag a breeze! 40% off makes it less than $65!
  • Chic and classic, this black lace overlay wrap dress gets rave reviews for being quite flattering and such a style will work year round for so many social occasions. On sale 40% off so it’s only a hair over $100.
  • The tomato color of this short sleeve shift dress from Tahari is so pretty and works year-round; the cutout detail at the neck keeps it from being boring and reduces the need for jewelry. Wear now with a black blazer and tights, and come spring with nude pumps. 40% off.
  • I love the simplicity of this cap sleeve maxi dress from MICHAEL Michael Kors. It’s a great basic that can transform with what you pair with it. A denim jacket, a beaded bolero, a scarf worn cowboy style, several long strands of pearls, a waterfall cardigan and boots… On sale 40% off.
  • This gorgeous silver beaded mosaic-like metallic cocktail dress from Marina is a work of art and will garner many ooohs and aaahs when you wear it. On sale for less than $135 but looks much more expensive.


  • A classic trench from Calvin Klein in a classic color and a flattering length. From Calvin Klein, and the 40% off sale price makes it less than $150!
  • Ditch the black cardigan and frumpy shawl and upgrade your dresses with this faux fur capelet from Eliza J. 40% off.
  • If brown faux fur is more your style, check out this short faux fur jacket from Marina, on sale 40% off.
  • Or maybe you’re the type who needs this black faux monkey fur cropped jacket from ELOQUII in your life. Pair with dresses for formal events, or style with a simple tank and jeans for a night out on the town. 50% off makes the price very nice.
  • The stand collar and ruffle placket detail of this car coat from Tahari makes it so feminine, so elegant, but still timeless. The pale beige color is a nice change from black but just as versatile. 33% off.
  • This faux Persian lamb coat from Gallery reminds me of my own coat, and I find mine to be such a warm and luxe alternative to wool. The material has a bit of shine and plenty of texture to catch the light and stand out in a crowd. It also helps it dress up well being a more formal coat for cold nights and dressy affairs. On sale 50% off.
  • This grey heather car coat from Larry Levine is simple, elegant, and looks far more expensive than its sale price of under $200. I love how there’s not obvious hardware, just makes it look more refined.
  • This belted coat from Ellen Tracy is begging to go on vacation with you. A fabric that looks chic even after being shoved in a carryon bag, a stowaway hood, plenty of secure pockets, and a length that is chic with skirts and pants makes this a versatile and stylish wardrobe edition. Two colors available and 33% off.
  • If you’re tired of buying cheaply made coats and wraps that don’t last more than one season and don’t flatter your figure, this coat is for you. If you’re a successful woman but your coat collection doesn’t match your work wardrobe, this coat is for you. This wool and cashmere wrap coat from Fleurette isn’t cheap even on sale, but gosh it’s elegant and luxe and versatile and it’s refreshing to see brands create such luxury pieces in larger sizes. 50% off.
  • Another elegant coat, at a much more manageable price. This a-line wool blend coat from Ellen Tracy comes in three colors and is a classic that will look chic for years. 50% off.
  • And for a belted coat look for less, this pick from Tahari is quite nice. Two colors and on sale for less than $250.
  • Shearling is hot this season and I know is a trend that will continue into fall and next winter. The pale pink and cream colors of this draped coat from Laundry by Shelli Segal adds elegance and femininity and would look great with denim, black, olive, grey, and shades of tan and taupe. On sale for less than $200.
  • If you’re going to wear faux fur, make it fabulous! This navy and black a-line coat also from Laundry by Shelli Segal is an awesome color, awesome texture, and flattering silhouette and can be your evening coat with cocktail dresses or just utterly badass with jeans and a tee. 33% off makes it less than $250.
  • I love a leopard coat, it’s so fun and adds style to a grey winter day. This one from Via Spiga balances the print with a very simple classic silhouette making it stylish for many years. 35% off keeps it under $200.
  • This collarless leather jacket can be worn with a scarf as a fall jacket, or replace a blazer. The zippers make it tough, but the tonal embroidery gives it a feminine and artsy vibe. The reviews are very positive and 35% off makes such nice leather a reasonable price.

Office Attire

  • While I won’t be rocking cropped flares this spring, I do see the appeal and I think they look best on a tall curvy woman. These from Classiques Entier are polished enough for the workplace and if paired with a suit jacket or blouse can make corporate attire both appropriate and on trend. 40% off.
  • This black, white, and blue print crepe blouse from Sejour is chic and not at all like the cabbage rose muumuus of the past. Wear to work with pants of any lengths, with or without a blazer, or a skirt. Style for a night out with leather leggings or dark skinny jeans.
  • Another great blouse for work and play, this one in stretch silk by Classiques Entier (could look quite chic with the cropped flares!). 40% off.
  • This drape front blazer with zipper detail has a rock and roll vibe but is completely appropriate for the office. However, it can also transition to the weekend or happy hour by being paired with a simple knit and jeans. 40% off keeps this Vince Camuto blazer under $100.
  • It’s always nice to have long cardigans like this one from Lauren Ralph Lauren in the wardrobe to slip on when there’s a chill; with this gorgeous cobalt color and elegant finish it’s nice enough for the office and would look downtown cool with leather leggings and booties. 40% off.
  • Foxcroft shirts are the best; opaque, shaped for curves, well made, and good quality. This white shirt from the brand is shaped, wrinkle resistant, and on sale for less than $50.  Also available in two pretty jewel tones.
  • I think I have a bit of a crush on this blazer cape from MYNT 1792. This is coolness all wrapped up in one garment and is a weight where it could be worn as a blazer or as a lightweight topper in fall or spring. 33% off keeps it under $200.
  • This crepe tank from Lauren Ralph Lauren is a perfect shell for suits or can be worn on its own for a night out. In basic black or bright orange, the subtle lace-up detail on the sides adds interest without making it too wild for the workplace. 40% off.
  • Super luxe leather asymmetrical jacket from Sejour is a great topper for cool weather or a chic alternative to a blazer or denim jacket. While the black is versatile, I’m partial to the gorgeous grey color. 50% off makes it less than $200 for real leather!
  • The ‘Sydney’ suit jacket from ELOQUII has classic tailoring and receives rave reviews for the fit and quality. This link is for the jacket in black, this link is for the jacket in navy doubleweave; both are on sale for less than $65.
  • The ‘Ela’ pants from Sejour get rave reviews for fit and make for a perfect work trouser. On sale for less than $45.

Jeans, Pants, and Leggings

  • The NYDJ ‘Isabella’ stretch trouser jean is so lean and refined. No goofy pocket embroidery, just crisp dark denim that is begging to be worn on Casual Friday or styled with a silky blouse and kitten heels for a creative workplace or happy hour. 40% off and a plethora of positive customer reviews.
  • Flare jeans are back in style, and these from Lucky Brand have a flattering color wash, a nice wide hem which gives a vintage vibe and looks great with a chunky shoe, and are 30% off (less than $65!).
  • I never would have expected a pair of grey jeans to be so flattering or versatile, but since I added a pair to my wardrobe I can’t stop wearing them! While the ‘Barbara’ from NYDJ is a bootcut, it’s a subtle flare that just balances the figure and works with most any shoe. Available in ‘Eclipse’ (grey) and two other colors at 50% off.
  • Want the look of leather leggings but the ability to machine wash? Check out these coated leggings from MYNT 1792. Reviews say they’re made well and look like real leather. 25% off.
  • Oh the silhouette on these ponte flare leg pants from MYNT 1792 is delicious! So modern, so on trend, and to be in stretchy ponte AND on sale 40% off? Yes!

Sweaters and Cardigans

  • This cool fringe-detail cardigan from NIC + ZOE should NOT be styled with that camel top. Imagine it with a simple v-neck tee, or a band tee, or a Breton striped top or over a black shift with some knee-high boots, maybe the cardigan belted. See, isn’t it super awesome now? And even more awesome that it’s 40% off!
  • Another piece styled wrong so you can’t see its awesomeness. Imagine this slouchy space-dyed sweater from Eileen Fisher with girlfriend jeans and biker-inspired ankle booties. With waxed or leather jeans and pointy pumps. With white jeans, a pendant necklace, and flat metallic sandals. See, isn’t it great? Even greater at 40% off.
  • The ‘Oasis’ top from NIC + ZOE is pretty awesome and I love that you can remove the scarf for a completely different look. This color makes it work three seasons of the year.
  • This faux wrap sweater from Sejour comes in the prettiest shade of blue and is a step up from basic knit tops yet just as versatile and comfy! 40% off.
  • Any surprise that I love this bright orange ribbed sweater from Lauren Ralph Lauren? Imagine it against dark wash denim, paired with white come spring, worn with olive or a black and white pair of ankle pants… orange is a great accent color for a wardrobe of neutrals and the thick rib of this sweater is classic yet very on trend at the same time. 40% off makes it less than $60.
  • Cashmere in nine different colors and less than $60!
  • Much of Melissa McCarthy’s Seven7 collection left me underwhelmed, but one piece I always liked was this dip-dye fuzzy cardigan. Now it’s on sale 55% off!

Tops and Tees

  • So simple, but so chic. This white belted poncho-inspired top from MICHAEL Michael Kors is elegant and would work for the office with trousers, the weekend with skinny jeans and booties, or a night out with skinny black pants and heels.
  • For lounging on weekends in style, this cocoon-style knit cardigan from Yummie by Heather Thomson is perfect. Not too bulky, not too thin, super soft and a flattering shape will make you want to banish all your old worn-out sweats. 40% off.
  • Another great lounge piece from Yummie by Heather Thomson is this oversized cowl neck tunic. Basic black or a delicious dark blue will keep you cozy on the couch or glam up with leggings and knee-high boots for weekend activities. Also 40% off.
  • A classic black and white striped crew for less than $30. I have Halogen tees that are years old and are still in great shape and haven’t shrunk. This is a great basic for a great price.
  • This past holiday season really made me wish I had a casual but sparkly top in my wardrobe ready to wear for a party at a friend’s house or a casual get together at a neighborhood bar. This metallic v-neck from NYDJ would have done the trick – pair with leather or denim and a pair of heels or booties for a casual, comfortable, yet festive look. In such a color you can wear this far beyond December. 40% off makes it less than $65.
  • I love me some stripes, so you know I like this organic cotton sweatshirt from JUNAROSE. Nice details upgrade this from basic sweats and make it stylish and flattering. On sale for less than $45.
  • Talk about a statement piece! This gorgeous wool knit poncho from MYNT 1792 is divine and gosh that’s a beautiful shade of blue! Wear it as a coat, with skinny jeans and a tee, or slip over an LBD for a sophisticated look. 33% off.
  • I love a blue and white peasant top for spring. Style with lighter colored girlfriend jeans and some slip-on sneakers, with white jeans and tan heeled sandals, add some turquoise and silver jewelry and a touch of bronzer and you’re ready for summer even if it’s months away. This one from Lucky Brand is a breezy batik print and 45% off.
  • I ordered this beaded and sequined tee from Adriana Papell as a possible NYE look. It’s truly gorgeous in person, and the wider neckline and fitted sleeves makes it elegant enough to wear tucked into a taffeta midi or ball skirt or under a cocktail pantsuit. Though don’t be afraid to pair with jeans and heels for a bachelorette party! 40% off.

Stay tuned I’ll also have a post of standard sized sale picks, and my picks for shoes, bags, and other accessories!

Nordstrom and NIC+ZOE for Spring [sponsored]

I think you all know by now my love for Nordstrom. The selection of brands, the variety of sizes (and pricepoints!), the free shipping and returns, and the world-famous customer service can’t be beat. Nordstrom asked me to check out their NIC+ZOE collection and share with you my favorites. This wasn’t hard, as I have NIC+ZOE already residing in my closet and have featured pieces from the brand in previous capsule wardrobe and advice posts. Spring is right around the corner, and NIC+ZOE has some fantastic pieces in regular, petite, and plus sizes to update your wardrobe for the next season.

NIC and ZOE dresses

In last week’s capsule post I discussed the benefits of a dress that highlights the waist. While I recommended such a dress for a pear shape, it actually works on most figures by creating an hourglass and highlighting the smallest part of the torso. NIC+ZOE have a bunch of great dresses this spring that do just that:

  • The ‘Pebble Pieced’ Knit Swirl Dress not only has a figure-flattering fit and flare shape, but black lines that elongate the frame and highlight the waistline. I like that the print is fun, but not something that will look dated in a year, and the fabric can transition between seasons. Customer reviews say the fabric doesn’t cling and the dress is comfortable. With pockets and a knee-grazing hem, this is a dress that could be worn to the office, but also paired with heels and a bold lip for a wedding or Date Night. Available in Regular and Plus sizes.
  • I love dresses that gather or knot at the waistline; this is such a flattering detail and not one that detracts from the dress’ print or any accessories paired with it. In fact, my wedding dress had this figure-flattering feature! NIC+ZOE has a few dresses with this detail. The ‘Spring Rain’ Faux Wrap Sheath Dress is one you need to see in person (or magnified on the site) to appreciate its beauty. With the gathered side, stretch lining, and subtle blue, black, and white print, this is a dress that will flatter your figure and your lifestyle. Pair with a black blazer for the office, wear with nude pumps and a sparkly necklace to a day wedding, or wear with tan sandals and a straw bag for a summer brunch. Available in regular and petite sizes. The ‘Utopia Twist’ Jersey Dress has the same waist feature, but bracelet-length sleeves and an awesome cobalt, black, white, and gray graphic print. Just as versatile, this dress could also work now with black tights and booties. Available in plus sizes.
  • I referenced the Belted Surplice Bodice Pleat Dress in my latest capsule wardrobe post and love it so much I have it sitting in my Nordstrom virtual shopping cart, considering buying it for myself. The blue color is phenomenal, the wrap neckline elongates the frame and since the fabric has stretch will work with a larger bust without showing too much, the belt highlights the smallest part of the torso (and can easily be switched out for a different color or metallic), and the pieced pleating creates an hourglass shape. This is the kind of dress that will be worn like crazy all spring and summer. With the fabric, it’s brilliant for taking on travel as it won’t wrinkle and can dress up and down easily with a switch of accessories. Regular and petite sizes.

NIC and ZOE pants

Why is it so hard to find a decent pair of black pants? Based on the reviews at Nordstrom, it seems NIC+ZOE is a good choice for this closet staple and other wardrobe basics.

  • ‘The Wonderstretch’ Straight Leg Pants are another NIC+ZOE piece that is in my Nordstrom shopping cart. I am all about a work-appropriate pant that pulls on. Nice and stretchy, resistant to wrinkles, available in regular and petite sizes, and glowing online reviews makes this a great buy. They’re also available in navy, and a slim leg version.
  • You have to be pretty confident to describe a piece in your collection as perfect; NIC+ZOE’s ‘The Perfect’ collection does seem to be pretty fantastic wardrobe staples. An online reviewer says ‘The Perfect’ Ankle Pant (regular and petite sizes in seven different colors) has a nice heft keeping it opaque even in lighter colors and put together well with nice detailing. In the same fabrication but with a side zip and clean waistband, ‘The Perfect’ Pant also gets stellar reviews. Available in four colors and petite sizes 0-16. Finally, NIC+ZOE has ‘The Perfect’ Ponte Pant, which is a very slim pull-on style with front seams to elongate the leg. More like a heavyweight legging, this would be a great option to wear with longer sweaters and tunics. Pair now with tall or ankle booties, and come spring style with pointed-toe slingbacks or pumps. Like the other ‘Perfect’ pants, the online reviews are glowing. Regular and petite sizes available.

NIC and ZOE spring 2015

NIC+ZOE is great for other wardrobe staples too – they have a great selection of skirts, jackets, cardigans, and blouses in regular, petite, and plus sizes. The pants are just an example of what the brand offers. But what I like is their “something extra” sort of pieces; a sweater with an unexpected detail, the unique draping of a blouse, the print of a tunic or cropped pant that doesn’t reduce its versatility but adds fun and personality to these wardrobe staples. The ruffles and flattering seaming of this top that gets rave reviews and is perfect on its own or slipped under a blazer or cardigan. The amazing print on this top that makes a jaw-dropping ensemble even when paired with a simple black skirt or pair of trousers. The “business in the front/party in the back” feature of this blouse that is made for a desk-to-drinks sort of day (or perfect to pack for versatility on vacation). How combining this top with this skirt (tucked in or left out as seen above) would create the look of a dress (such a great option for people who are different sizes on top and bottom), but also work so nicely separated in different outfits. And the way that this cardigan can be styled four ways to look amazing with everything from a tank and boyfriend jeans to being slipped over a maxi dress this spring. Peruse the widget above for some more great pieces.

This post is sponsored by Nordstrom, but I hope you can tell by my excitement that I enjoyed sharing this line with you and all opinions are my own!

Spring Trend Forecast by Nordstrom [Sponsored]

Nordstrom asked me to take a look at their spring collections and share some of my favorite trends with you. I’m not one for following trends blindly; while I do believe it’s good to be aware of current trends and think one should incorporate a few seasonal looks into a wardrobe of style I don’t think you should add them willy-nilly. I think many of us can think back to purchases we made when caught up in the excitement of a new season or look that we later came to regret. For this post I chose pieces that look fresh and modern now, but will still be chic a year from now.

trouve spring 2015 nordstrom

1. The High-waist Pencil Skirt. This season, waistlines have inched up, which can seem awkward after so many seasons of low rises, but you will soon realize is an awesome trend. Better highlighting the smallest part of your torso and preventing muffin top, a high-waisted pencil can make any woman feel like Marilyn. A graphic floral like this one camouflages bumps and can be paired with everything from a chambray shirt or graphic tee to a crisp white shirt or tailored blazer. Being a stripes fan, I’d totally try it with a Breton tee!

2. The Wide Leg Trouser. Come now, when has Katharine Hepburn NOT been chic? Gain inspiration from her signature look this spring with a pair of wide-leg trousers. For slim or tall figures, pair with driving mocs and a slouchy silk blouse; for those who are petite or have more curves consider a pair of pointed-toe wedges or pumps to elongate the leg and a more tailored top to better show your shape. These pants would look great with a striped boat or scoop neck knit top and a skinny belt in a pop of brilliant color.

3. The Moto Jacket. Another trend that isn’t new and isn’t going anywhere, the moto jacket has gone from outwear to a chic alternative to the blazer. In a bold hue like this one from 1.State, it’s a great way to update a wardrobe of neutrals. Keep it classic with a Breton tee and jeans, go modern by pairing with slouchy black pants and a white silk tank, or wear it over a gray dress or pencil skirt for a gorgeous yet unexpected look for the office.

4. The Boyfriend Blazer.  This is a trend that has been around for a few seasons and continues to have staying power. In crisp white the look is fresh and modern. Style this jacket with jeans and a band tee, pair with ankle pants and a floaty silk shell, or slip over a sheath dress to give the frock a new hip feel.

5. The Ankle Bootie. I already wrote about this spring trend, but it bears repeating. The cutouts on this one by Trouvé make it a hybrid between boot and sandal which extends their wear into the warmer months. Also available in leg-lengthening nude, this shoe can be worn with everything from slouchy pants to boyfriend jeans to skirts and dresses of any length.

6. The Midi Skirt. Last year’s midi skirts were pleated and full, and proved difficult to wear by some figures. This year’s midi has reduced its volume, not just make it more figure flattering but also more acceptable to be worn at the office. White is hot this spring, and a skirt in this color will be extremely versatile. Style with a crisp shirt and wide belt and pumps for the day, a silk tee with a sparkly necklace and heels for evening, or a simple cotton tank and flat sandals for the weekend.

7. The Slouchy Printed Pant.  Slouchy trousers and track pants can be unflattering if you have softness and curves; what I’ve found is choosing them in a print confuses the eye and creates a smooth look. I’d pair these pants with a simple black tank, peeptoe ankle booties and statement –making longer necklace for a casual cool look, or style with a white blazer (like the boyfriend one featured above) and pointed-toe shoes for a look that can work in a more creative office environment.

8. The Statement Shell.  This is one of my favorite trends for spring as it’s so wearable and versatile. Graphic prints, contrast trims, mixed materials, and crossover backs keep these sleeveless tops interesting while still appropriate under a power suit. I love the black trim on this one; pair with a black skirt or pants for an instant chic ensemble, though the black trim would make it look equally as great with white.

Shop the Looks in this Post:

While this post was sponsored by Nordstrom, I chose all the pieces to be featured and all thoughts are my own.

Nordstrom Men’s Watches: Best Picks for the Best Gift [Sponsored]

In 2001, Karl and I took a trip to Jamaica. We stayed at a hotel that was far more impressive in the brochures than in real life, Karl got food poisoning the first night and I got so badly sunburned the second day I had to sleep like a starfish in a bed separate from Karl. Our bus for a trip to a waterfall got held up and our plane home had engine trouble and we had to spend another night in Jamaica in a roach-infested hotel near the airport where we both were eaten alive by bedbugs. But the entire trip wasn’t terrible, we had some fun moments and while in Jamaica Karl bought a watch. It was a random splurge gift at the hotel gift shop to compensate for the craziness of the trip, but it is a watch he still wears and uses today.

I’m glad to see watches are back on trend; they are such a beautiful and useful accessory and when you purchase quality, can be a piece that last years and even generations. Karl wore my dad’s pocket-watch on our wedding day, I still have my dad’s wristwatch, and when I think of a great sentimental gift, you can’t go wrong with a watch. It’s the season of graduations, weddings, and Father’s Day is around the corner; I’ve partnered with Nordstrom to share my picks for great watches for a special man in your life.

watch trends 2015 men

  1. Can’t go wrong with a classic! To celebrate over 160 years as an iconic American watch brand, Timex released The ‘Waterbury. The meticulously stitched leather band, ageless design, and solid steel construction will make this piece a classic to be worn for years to come. $100.00
  2. I love the sporty edge to this classic leather-band watch from Skagen. The blue color is fresh without being too out there, the perforations makes it comfortable in hot weather, and the silver face is modern yet elegant. $155.00
  3. The ‘Big Combi’ from G-Shock is the perfect watch for the active guy. Shock resistant, 200M water resistant, with an auto LED light and 1/1000th second stopwatch with speed indicator, this will be his favorite companion for excursions, athletics, and everything in between. $99.00
  4. The Skagen ‘Ancher’ is a clean, simple, classic watch that would be perfect for the no-frills guy. Paired equally well with a suit as a polo and chino shorts, the stainless and brown leather combo is subtle but adds style. $145.00
  5. You can recognize a Movado watch a mile away, and the ‘Bold’ is no different. In black with touches of gold, this is an elegant watch but the stainless construction and athletic link band make it a timepiece that can stake the rigor of years of everyday wear. $750.00
  6. The company Shinola got its name from the World War II era colloquialism, “You don’t know sh*t from Shinola” and a desire to resurrect a brand that has existed since 1907. When studies showed that consumers—when faced with a choice of paying $5 for a pen from China, $10 for one made in the United States, and $15 for a pen made in Detroit—would be willing to pay a premium for the latter, Shinola took the risk to create a Detroit-based company that offered quality goods including watches. The ‘Rambler’ is a perfect marriage of durability and classic looks making it a watch that may be passed down to another generation. $750.00
  7. ‘The Time Teller’ from Nixon is a sleek and sophisticated watch that begs to peek out of the cuff of a snazzy suit jacket. The black stainless body and brushed black face makes this watch stand out from the rest. With an easily adjustable band and a gorgeous storage box, this is a great gift. $95.00
  8. For the man in your life who wants a watch as rugged and bold as he, the G-Shock XL Camouflage Pattern (red shown but also comes in classic camo) is a great pick. Shock, magnetic, and water resistant with an LED illuminated dial and a ton of gadgets, this will be a watch he’ll never want to take off. $150.00
  9. Oh the classic elegance of Burberry. This is a watch that could be worn by a 22 year old and an 82 year old and they’d both look stylish and appropriate. Stainless steel construction and a PVC-coated leather band provides durability without sacrificing sophistication. This would make an excellent wedding or college graduation gift. $695.00

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A Nordstrom Update

The day after my previous post about Nordstrom, I was contacted by their Corporate Communications department via email and then by telephone. Today Chris from Nordstrom and I had a lovely call during my lunch hour and I have more insight concerning the change in shipping styles and policies for the company.

Before, if the Nordstrom warehouse didn’t have your Via Spigas or Rachel Palley in stock, you would be told that. Tough tootsies, mamacita. Now what Nordstrom does is their system will check all the Nordstrom stores to see if one of them has your item in stock. This means you have a better chance of getting the item you desire and not seeing the dreaded “Out of Stock” message. Also, Nordstrom is working with some retailers so they can deliver the item directly from THEIR warehouse, instead of having it shipped twice –first to Nordstrom, and then to you. Think

This process has been going on for about a year, and Nordstrom is working hard to improve and perfect the process. However in the mean time, if you order five things, they could possibly come from five different stores (or a mix of stores, warehouse and the brand’s headquarters). Chris from Nordstrom asked for the order number for the order I referenced in my post. He was able to see from his computer that the tights and bracelet came from headquarters, the shoes from a store, and the earrings directly from the manufacturer (what they call a “drop ship vendor”).

When Chris realized that big box only held that tiny jewelry box and knew that the shipment came from a “drop ship vendor,” he said he would be contacting the vendor to comment on this and hope that they will use less packing materials in the future to be consistent with Nordstrom’s style and beliefs.

Yes, Nordstrom has Green methods and beliefs. They work hard to be eco-friendly and are proud to be a landfill-free at headquarters. Chris informed me that Nordstrom has ordered some new shipping materials – new box sizes and even some small shipping pouches for accessories and other small objects. We Nordstrom customers will be seeing this change in the future.

And in the future, the shipping process should be streamlined – they will be able to comingle store and warehouse items in shipments.

Thanks Nordstrom, for taking the time to contact me and answer all of my questions. I am still a loyal customer and look forward to the changes in the future!

Recent Purchases – Nordstrom

I cleaned out my purse last weekend and found $80 worth of Nordstrom Rewards. I felt this was a sign so I decided to check out Nordstrom’s sale department. Here’s what I I liked, and what I didn’t like so much:

As you can tell from this post, I liked this skirt.  It’s a weird fabric – sort of cheapy spongy polyester knit, sort of ponte.  It’s redeeming factor is that it is fully lined, which gives it a nice weight and keeps it from clinging too much.  Side hidden zipper, zipper pocket detail – these are FAUX pockets which was a bit of a disappointment. But the skirt comes in a variety of sizes and lengths (and other prints too, some which are on sale, some which are not) and I think can dress up or down with ease.  I like the python print – I think it will look fantastic with bright colors, yet also look classic with a crisp white shirt or black turtleneck sweater.

If I were six feet tall, I might like this dress.  A size Large made me feel as though I was a child playing dress-up in my mother’s closet.  The neckline went to the bottom of my ribs, the waistband was near my hipbones, and there was at least a foot of fabric pooling on the floor even though I was standing on my toes.  Yes, I am petite (5’3″), but I can usually carry off dresses like these with only a minor trimming of the hem.  I can’t even tell you how the dress looks because my reflection made me look as though I wrapped myself up in a curtain.

The green color is just as fantastic in person as it is on the website.   However the bag is just plain weird and cheap looking.  Shiny nylon with really fake looking leather trim.  The strap is very stiff and the buckle to adjust the strap doesn’t seem to vibe with the style of the bag itself.  The gold details are REALLY shiny, very fake looking.  The logo for the bag is on the back, and it’s a big green enamel heart with gold trim – totally not my style.  I wanted something bigger than my Hobo International “Libby” bag to have for concerts and events when I want my hands free, and a place for everything (camera, phone, lip gloss, ID, cash).  This is not the bag. 

Per this post, you can see I like this coat and have added it to my wardrobe.  It’s a great classic trench, but with flattering details.  It comes in petite, it’s not as shiny as one would think from the picture on the web, it’s single breasted, it’s not super long but long enough to be flattering with skirts.  There is a nice lining which will keep one warm on breezy fall days.  Water resistant.  The only thing I don’t like are the weird little metal grommet detail on the pockets – I find them superfluous and they make the jacket look a bit more casual and cheap.  However for such an otherwise lovely jacket for less than $90, I can ignore the grommets!

Just as cute in person as the picture on the web.  Unfortunately my foot is just too fat for them.  It’s not just that my foot is wide, but it’s too tall/full to fit into the shoe properly.  A shame, since it’s an elegant silhouette – a trendy shoe style but in a cut that would make them wearable and stylish seasons after the heeled loafer has left the fashion magazines.  Don’t let my fit issues sway you – I have unusually chubby feet and these shoes are only $64.90 – what a deal!

The jury’s still out on this one.  On one hand, it fits nicely in the shoulders and back; on the other hand the button is a bit too low for my petite frame.  It’s a nice stretchy ponte fabric that could dress up with a pencil skirt or look cute with a tank and jeans.  However, the button is strange (military-inspired pewter) and I would have to replace it; also the lining on the rolled sleeves is sheer and you can see the red through it (the other colors wouldn’t be as much of an issue).  It just feels cheap; I will need to try this with different things in my closet to see if it deserves a place in my collection.

The Nordstrom Half-Yearly Sale is in full effect – have you scored any great deals from it?

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An Open Letter to Nordstrom

Dear Nordstrom,

I love you. You KNOW I love you. The only store credit card I still own is for you. When I worked retail and had a stressful day, I didn’t smoke a cigarette in the parking lot. I didn’t get a drink at the bar. I walked into Nordstrom. I breathed in the cool perfumed air, listened to the pianist near the beauty department, wandered around the shoe department. This calmed me down better than anything else. And really, I would prefer an Ice Storm from your Espresso bar over a Frappucinno any day.

I love shopping online with you – your site has great customer reviews, it’s clean and easy to navigate, you have a wonderful selection of larger sizes and shoes. Your return policy is fantastic, and truly it makes me spend MORE because you excel at customer service.

However lately you are upsetting me. A lot. So much, I am wondering if I should continue an online relationship with you. Nordstrom, it’s not your quality or your service, it’s your shipping.

A year ago, I knew I could place an order on a Monday and have it on my doorstep by Friday. Usually the order all came in a sturdy cardboard box, smartly packed with minimal supplies but maximum protection of my new goodies. Occasionally a beauty product or pair of shoes would come separately from a store instead of your warehouse. Even so, the item came quickly, and was packed well with minimal shipping supplies. I often kept the shipping boxes you sent – they were perfect for storing items in my closet or attic, and were far sturdier and reliable than shipping boxes from other online retailers. I felt good knowing that I could recycle or reuse most of the shipping materials.

I don’t see this any more with Nordstrom. I will place an order and be told that everything is in stock, and then get an email a few days later telling me an item won’t be available for WEEKS. Items come separately, and it sometimes takes over two weeks to get items from the date of supposed shipment. I can place an order on Monday and on Friday may get the top I ordered, the next Wednesday receive the jeans, then Friday maybe the shoes… if I am lucky. If multiple items arrive the same day, they are usually packaged separately. One in a UPS padded mailer, another in a lightweight cardboard box, another in your old-school sturdy well-made shipping boxes.

The two boxes I received from Nordstrom – all that packaging for those teeny-tiny items…

Take for example my recent purchase from you. On November 5, I placed an order for a bracelet, pair of earrings, pair of tights and a pair of leather booties. On November 10, I received two boxes on my doorstep.

The first one was a standard heavyweight box. Inside was… one little pair of tights and one little jewelry box with my new earrings. The other box was almost large enough for the booties and I thought maybe they arrived (was hoping they would come in time for the blogging event with Last Call). Nope, instead in that box was a lonely little jewelry box with the bracelet. Both boxes came from the Nordstrom warehouse, not a store. Today it is November 16 and I JUST received the booties at my door, in yet another separate cardboard box. I am not home, so do not know how these shoes have been shipped.

Nordstrom, I have to think that this process for shipping must be costing you a pretty penny. All these separate shipments from all over the country at different times. The cost for shipping, and all the cost for shipping materials. Not only that, but I am completely disgusted by the amount of materials you now use to deliver orders – three large boxes, shipping paper, plastic for these three separate shipments that could have easily all fit in one box. The amount of trees to make all this cardboard, the fuel used to manufacture the boxes and then to ship these boxes to me.

I hate having my items take so long to get to me, but I honestly would rather everything show up late and in the same box, than this stupid parade of cardboard. But then really, if you are going to start taking two weeks for shoes to arrive, I don’t see the point in choosing you over Zappos or another online retailer.

I love you Nordstrom, I really do. Because I love you, I tell you this. I want to help, but I don’t know how this relationship can continue if you keep going down this path.


The Nordstrom Half Yearly Sale

Nordstrom’s half-Yearly Sale is going on, and I encourage all of you to check it out online! Think your wallet can’t handle a purchase from this shopping Mecca? Think again. When you hit the link on their site for the sale, there are categories for purchases, and one is “Under $30.’ Yes, you can find dozens upon dozens of accessories, lingerie, workout clothes, shoes and cute regular, plus and maternity clothes for under $30!

I have been good lately. Really good. I have not visited malls, I haven’t even virtually window shopped online. I have decided to survive the winter with the wardrobe I currently own. I am the same size as last winter, and my clothing is basic enough that it doesn’t look dated. However this morning as I was getting ready for work and then an after-work event where I am going to see Andre Leon Talley speak, I realized my wardrobe is a bit… tired. Sweaters with fuzz balls, stretched out sleeves, slightly misshapen from multiple trips through the gentle cycle. Pants with hems resewn several times and often still held together with safety pins or Stitch Witchery. Linings that are torn and hang on my legs like chaps. Buttons missing, fabric snagged, and just over worn and tired. I feel good about my shoes, and I love my new bag for the fall/winter. My makeup is fun, my accessories are good, but the basic clothing is a bit too basic and a bit too boring.

Today when I had a slow point in my work day, I decided to check out Nordstrom online. I passed a Nordstrom on my last business trip and saw the signs for the sale. Figured it was as good a time as any to do take part in some retail therapy. Let’s add that through Gold Points I get 15 points for each dollar spent at the site, and if I use my Nordstrom card, I get double points toward gift certificates through the store (if you know you can handle credit cards and pay them off monthly, it’s worth it to invest in these types of cards. I have gotten hundreds of dollars for free at Nordstrom over the decade because of this feature).

I have been wanting a motocross-inspired jacket out of a vintage-looking leather. Stand up collar, zip front, crackled leather in either black or dark red. Every jacket I have seen and liked has been way over $250 – way too expensive for my budget. In the Half-Yearly sale I found a great version from Caslon for only $160, and it looks like a piece I have owned for decades. Just what I was looking for! I got some dangle sterling earrings for $24 (originally far more), two tops that are weekend or going-out appropriate (depending on the rest of the outfit) that were both under $35 (and originally over $50), and a really cute dress that is multi-season fabric and less than $40 (originally $75). I know, still a lot of money, but I am being realistic. There is a good chance that many of these pieces will not look good on me once they arrive, I also know that I NEED a jacket, not just want one. I have wanted earrings like this for over a year but can’t stomach the prices I have seen for sterling lately, and well the rest… I have been going out more lately and each time I get ready for an evening with friends I have a minor panic attack because my wardrobe is almost entirely Business Casual and not Fun with Girls Casual. So my hope is these three things will cost less than anti-anxiety pills or trips to the therapist’s couch!

So head over to Nordstrom and see if you may be able to find some of your Needs or Wants But Can’t Affords in their Half Yearly Sale. Happy Shopping!

Spring Capsules, Travel, and Trends with NIC+ZOE [Sponsored]

Nordstrom asked me to share the NIC+ZOE Spring collection and I had no problem saying yes. In the past year, NIC+ZOE has become a favorite brand for me to recommend because of its blend of classic styling and incorporating trends, its reasonable price for the quality, and it’s broad selection of sizes and lengths. I was especially thrilled to share the Spring NIC+ZOE collection because it’s like a pre-made capsule wardrobe. Let me show you what I mean:

Wardrobe Oxygen: Plus Size Spring Capsule Wardrobe from NIC+ZOE at NordstromShop the Look: wide leg linen pants | perfect slim cut pants | twirl flirt skirt | printed asymmetrical shell | perfect tank | wrap top | chiffon hem cardigan | diamond dot textured cardigan | open stitch sweater

This is a capsule of work-friendly yet not stuffy pieces from NIC+ZOE’s plus size line. This is clothing that can go from the office to the weekend or even a vacation. The soft aquatic colors work perfectly with this season’s trends but also blend nicely with pieces you’re still wearing from your winter wardrobe (not only do blue and black look great together but it’s a hot trend right now!). The wide-leg linen pants can pair with the printed shell, the navy tank and cardigan, the wrap top, the navy tank with the printed cardigan, or a cami under the blue sweater. The ankle pants give a more polished look yet still work with all the same pieces and the lighter color will help darker colored winter sweaters transition nicely into the spring months. The navy skirt is paneled for a flattering fit and has a tonal jacquard pattern that helps it dress up and add a layer of interest to your ensemble. Pair it with the navy tank and cardigan, the wrap top, wear the printed cardigan with the navy tank or a tan or white top in your closet, and wear with the blue sweater (imagine adding a silver and mother of pearl necklace to the look!). Add some jeans, a Breton tee, and maybe a white v-neck tee with tan pumps or flats and metallic sandals to the mix and you’re set for a week’s vacation!

Wardrobe Oxygen: Spring Capsule Wardrobe from the petite collection of NIC+ZOE at NordstromShop the Look: wonder stretch slim pants | perfect pants | twirl sleeveless dress | arctic layer sleeveless blouse | the element layer shell | perfect tank | chiffon back cardigan | diamond dot textured cardigan | tile jacquard top

This is a capsule wardrobe from NIC+ZOE’s petite collection. Unlike the relaxed vibe of the previous capsule, this one has sleeker lines and a minimal color palette. Pair the slim black pants with the black sleeveless blouse, with the black tank and textured cardigan, the ivory shell and cardigan, the tile print top. The sandshell pants create an elegant look with the shell in the same color, with the black sleeveless blouse tucked in, with the black tank and chiffon back cardigan, the tile jacquard top. The sleeveless dress is an extremely flattering dress on its own, but would also look great with the sandshell cardigan (belted or not), or even with the tile jacquard top layered over it. The textured cardigan and the tank are the same pieces seen in the previous capsule, just in different colors. You’ll find the majority of the NIC+ZOE collection has the same pieces available in regular, petite, and plus sizes. Add a leather moto jacket, a pair of girlfriend jeans, some pointed toe flats and ankle booties and you’ll have a capsule that will go from desk to drinks with ease.

Wardrobe Oxygen: Spring Travel Capsule Wardrobe via NIC+ZOE for NordstromShop the Look: | the wonder stretch straight leg pants| linen blend wide leg pants| a-line skirt | printed ponte top | perfect layer tank | faux wrap fit and flare dress |sundown moto jacket | 4-way convertible cardigan | lightweight tunic sweater

This final capsule wardrobe is for travel. Pieces that can handle being stuffed in a suitcase, spot cleaned with a bar of Ivory soap in a hotel bathroom, pieces that can dress up and down easily and layer to accommodate for changing temps. The peach cardigan can be worn open, buttoned on the sides to make a wrap sweater, knotted and twisted to create a multitude of looks while being lightweight enough to tuck in your bag when sightseeing.  The wrap dress is one of those pieces that is perfect in any wardrobe – dress up for a wedding or wear with sandals for a casual cookout. The tunic sweater is lightweight with a variegated weave that can be worn untucked with the skinny pants, tucked into the wide leg linen trousers, or even knotted with the skirt. The moto jacket and the wide leg pants are both a linen blend that can look chic even if a bit wrinkled and rumpled. With the addition of a scarf or pashmina, a belt, some accessories for interest, a pair of comfortable walking shoes and some metallic flat sandals you’ll be set for your next excursion!

But don’t think NIC+ZOE is only neturals and simple pieces to create capsules. There’s some amazing statement pieces like this mixed media jacket or this tweed jacket that incorporate one of the hottest spring trends, this uber flattering seamed and printed dress, or this statement-making cardigan. Time and time again NIC+ZOE impresses me and this spring is no exception.

Ask Allie: All About Bras

Dear Allie, I hope this doesn’t sound creepy but your bust looks great. What bra do you wear?

My absolute favorite everyday bra is the Fantasie Underwire Smoothing T-Shirt bra. There’s a molded cup version, and a stretchy seamless cup version. I prefer the molded cup; it gives more support and prevents ‘headlights’. I always have two nude and two black in my drawer; I replace them every 6-12 months when they stretch out. I get myself re-sized every year to be sure I have the right size; I’ve been wearing this bra style for about six years and I have changed size three times. Don’t assume that you know your size, you change with age, lifestyle and diet changes.

I’m looking for a bra that will lift my 38DD bust. I can’t stand molded cup bras and want something seamless that will disappear under my T-shirt. Any suggestions?

Soma Enticing Lift Bra Review - Wardrobe OxygenSoma recently sent me their Enticing Lift bra and I am a big fan. With my large bust, I find traditional lace bras to show too many lines and not give a flattering shape. All stretch cups don’t really flatter either. The Enticing Lift bra is structured, but soft if that makes sense. It has a cup that is molded like a classic molded cup bra, but no padding. While it looks like lace, the lace is printed/fused to the cup so there’s no texture under fitted tops.  I really like the shape and lifting, and think it will be a welcome alternative this summer to my padded molded cup bras which can feel hot and heavy.

I see you wear clothes that need a strapless bra. I think strapless bras are so uncomfortable and they never stay up on me. How do you make it work?

Fantasie Strapless Underwire Bra Review - Wardrobe OxygenIt’s all about the fit. When shopping for a strapless bra, I recommend going to a professional bra fitter (and that doesn’t mean a college kid working at Victoria’s Secret). I’ve had success with strapless bras from Chantelle and Wacoal, but my current strapless bra is from Fantasie. I’ll admit it’s a bit less comfortable than my daily bra, but it’s wearable for many hours without discomfort, it lifts and separates, is invisible under knits, and never slips down.  It also comes with straps so you can turn it into an X/racerback bra, a halter bra, or wear just one straps for one-shouldered looks.

Bras for big breasts are always so ugly. Where can I find pretty and sexy bras (I’m a 40D).

Bare Necessities Bras - Wardrobe OxygenI think it’s worth it to spend for bras. The fit of your underpinnings can make or break your outfit. A quality bra that fits properly can make you look slimmer, will be more comfortable, and give you the best shape. I recommend getting yourself professionally fitted, and during it try on a couple different brands so you know how you fit in them and which styles of cups and bras work the best with your shape. Then head online! I love Bare Necessities, Amazon, and Nordstrom for finding bras for large busts in pretty colors and sexy silhouettes. With Nordstrom, search by your cup size, then go to the very last page of results to find all the styles on sale; they often have popular brands and styles in limited edition colors on drastic discount. At Nordstrom I’ve scored $78 bras for only $25 with this trick. Bare Necessities and Amazon will also have limited edition colors and prints for low prices, search your size so you don’t get your hopes up and find all that’s left is the 30H. The photo above shows four pretty bras available in 40D from Bare Necessities.  Also, check out Soma which I mentioned above; they have really beautiful bras and go up to a size 44H.  Often if you score a great color or print, it makes a larger more supportive style look more bombshell. You can also balance your bra with some lacy panties or a retro-inspired high-waist brief; a coordinated set can make you feel so beautiful and polished even if no one but you knows you’re wearing it! Unless it’s just for show, I don’t think it’s worth it to sacrifice fit and support for lace and frills.