The Year of the Suit

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Universal Standard green velvet pantsuit as seen on Alison Gary of Wardrobe Oxygen

2019 was The Year of the Suit.  I recently cleared out my closet and was surprised by how many suits I have amassed and how many of them I wear often and know I will continue to wear.  White pantsuits to cocktail parties, red double-breasted numbers to speak at a conference, velvet-trimmed plaid ones for afternoon tea, pinstripes for a birthday dinner, a pop of pink for speaking in front of grad students, and a black lady tux for an awards gala. I learned you don't need to wear a skirt, fancy undergarments, or a pair of heels to look elegant, formal, and fabulous.  In 2019 I realized a pantsuit holds power not only because of its classic professional silhouette, but because of the ease and comfort while looking like a badass.  I liked them with turtlenecks and buttoned-up blouses, I liked them with just my bra.  I wore the suit pieces as separates, dressing them down and giving them multiple lives.  I had so much fun rocking pantsuits in 2019, I know this will be a trend I continue to rock in the next decade!

Universal Standard dark green velvet pantsuit with REALM Fine and Fashion jewelry

Blazer: Universal Standard (12) | Pants: Universal Standard (12) | Shoes: Adidas | Bra: Soma | Earrings: Domain Pave Portrait Hoop Earring c/o REALM Fine + Fashion Jewelry | Necklace: Empire Stiletto Pave Pendant c/o REALM | Black Ring: Sceptre Linea Pave Median Ring with CZ Noir c/o REALM | Crystal Ring: Sceptre Linea Pave Median Ring with CZ Blanc c/o REALM | Lipstick: Lancome ‘Caprice'

The green velvet pantsuit from Universal Standard as seen on Alison Gary of Wardrobe Oxygen, styled with white Adidas sneakers

We all know by now I am a sucker for anything Universal Standard so when I saw this suit in my inbox one morning I made a beeline for the US website and ordered it immediately.  the suit comes in gold, black, and green and I knew I needed the green.  I ordered my standard size in US, not even realizing that the pants are meant to be slightly cropped.  They arrived, I put them on, and wondered, did I somehow order this suit in petite?  I was surprised that the pants were a perfect length for me with a bit of heel showing with heels or just touching the floor with flats.  I do think these pants would look cute in the shorter length they're supposed to be (reminds me of this suit I wore almost a year ago with ankle booties) but this is a perk for someone who usually has to get her suits tailored! 

Shop the Look:

When I first tried on this suit, I styled it with heeled ankle booties which felt super chic.  But for this shoot I decided to go comfortable with my Adidas Shelltops.  It's a wonderful time where we women can wear comfortable shoes and be celebrated for our style!  This suit would also look great with a pointed-toe flat or a pair of classic loafers in a metallic or brocade. You could also embrace the menswear trend with a pair of brogues. I'm wearing the suit just with a plaid black bra, but this would also look great with a button-front shirt, a silk blouse, a turtleneck, a graphic tee, or a sparkly shell

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Last night I went to see Jersey Boys at the National Theatre with my mom.  It's a special limited holiday engagement through January 5th and it was fantastic!  Great cast, great music, we both had a blast.  I wore the Universal Standard green velvet pantsuit with my MIA sock booties and Jenny Bird Monogram Hoops.  The coat is a couple of years old from ASOS.  It's not my size anymore but I just can't quit it!  It does make it more comfortable when worn over blazers and thick sweaters. 

Alison Gary wearing REALM Fine + Fashion jewelry with a green velvet Universal Standard blazer

Right now you can save 25% off at REALM with promo code DAZZLE.  This is fantastic because REALM rarely goes on sale.  I've featured REALM before, it's a woman-owned and designed fine fashion jewelry line based in Philadelphia.  This is high-end fashion jewelry, made with precious metals and quality stones.  These are pieces that offer years of statement-making style.  I wore these two rings together Sunday night when I went to my friend Angelica's holiday party and so many people stopped to ask about them.  They're unique rings that look good alone, stacked with other rings (really pretty with some sparkly slim bands), or doubled up like I have them here! And for those thinking you may gouge an eye out, this is the benefit of quality materials.  The ring doesn't bend, and fits so well even the klutz I am hasn't caught them on anything and find them quite comfortable.  This necklace I've worn as a long pendant and have doubled up the chain to wear in v-necklines.  And you've seen the earrings many times, they are so beautiful. 

A woman with curly hair wearing a plaid blazer holds a green fur coat over her shoulder on a city street.

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  1. Alison, I don’t know if you’ll see this so long after your original post, but I adore this suit and I went to Universal Standard to see if they still have it. They have the jacket in a 12 and the pants in 10 on final sale—normally, I’d prefer the reverse, and I am used to their clothes running large. But did you find these pieces to run large? I suppose I could have the jacket altered, as I have a smaller bust that I don’t think will fill up a 12, and I often need alterations there. If the pants run a bit large, that would be good for me.

    In the alternative, have you seen any nice velvet pantsuits this season? I have been looking and unless I want to spend thousands of dollars, I haven’t seen anything great. I suppose Corona dressing will be scaled down, but I’d wear a velvet suit at Christmas if I can find a nice one. Thanks!

    1. LOL I wrote this long long comment and then my site ate it seeing it as spam! Let’s see if I can recall what I wrote:

      – Don’t get the suit. This suit fits weirdly and you may be stuck with pieces that don’t work even with a tailor.
      – Check ebay, Poshmark, and the US B/S/T group where you may find this suit in the sizes right for you: https://www.facebook.com/groups/251787755769968
      – I too haven’t seen a lot of velvet suits yet this season. Talbots is my favorite for occasion, it fits well and is stylish yet classic enough to last multiple seasons. If you like black velvet they have this blazer https://shopstyle.it/l/bolbI I had it last year in red and it’s really nice. These pants look to match: https://shopstyle.it/l/bolbK and here is the link for the same pants in plus and plus petite: https://shopstyle.it/l/bok9T

      If I see more velvet suits I’ll be sure to share here on the blog. And if I do get around to getting my suiting from the attic and listing on Poshmark I’ll be sure to share!

      1. Thanks! US has some great stuff but I don’t like to order anything as final sale unless I absolutely know it will fit. Talbots is pretty consistent and well-fitting for me, too. I’ll check it out.

  2. Fabulous suit! And if you ever decide to part ways with that amazing ASOS jacket please put me at the top of the list!!!

  3. You know how much I love a suit and you look fantastic in all of these! Let’s keep 2020 as the year of the suit part deux!

  4. I am so inspired by these outfits – I feel like I have been searching for a long time for a fashion blogger who “gets me” and now I have found one.

    I did a “suit” for a formal event at my company this week and felt great. Looking forward for lots more inspiration in 2020!

  5. OMG — as I type this embarrassingly childish outburst, I am wearing the same green velvet suit jacket. It’s because of you that I tried Universal Standard and because of you that I embraced the suit. Thanks for the great recommendations. I have already worn the suit — either separately or together — five times since I bought. Love is not too strong a statement 🙂

  6. You look fabulous in that suit! And I can appreciate that the trouser length is good – even when it’s expected to be cropped!

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