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Nicole Martin
New Jersey
Remixing my wardrobe to create buzz-worthy, office-approved outfits! Find out more at: Creating Panache.
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Monday, January 31, 2011

Black & Blue & Grey

sweater: men's section at Daffy's ($16) ~ skirt: Necessary Objects via Century 21 ($25) ~ boots: Chinese Laundry via Macy's ($65) ~ necklaces: gifts

Date: January 31, 2011
Ensemble message: It's Monday and I'm super busy at work... so I went with an outfit that I would be comfortable in but also look nice for when I met with others.  If you haven't noticed, comfort has been key lately because a) Q1 is the busiest time for HR at The Day Job, and b) It snows on average once a week around here!

Knowing that another storm was heading our way, I took advantage of the sun this morning to get some outdoor shots.  As cold as it is, they just look so much nicer than my living room.  Plus, my living room is covering in ski equipment right now in anticipation of an upcoming trip! 

What did you wear to work today?

Friday, January 28, 2011

We Love Colors Giveaway Winner!

Navy ~ Rust ~ Splash Metallic

Thank you everyone for entering!  I got such an overwhelming amount of positive responses - such an exciting week!!  So without further adieu, the winner of the We Love Colors tights giveaway is:

Congrats Danie of No Guilt Fashion!!!  I will e-mail you in a bit to get your details... and I hope to see a post with you wearing your winnings :)  Also, thanks to We Love Colors for sponsoring this giveaway!

This week really has been a lot of fun!  I was able to create 3 very different styles, all based on the tights I would be wearing that day.  Which is your favorite??
Thursday, January 27, 2011

We Love Colors: Splash Metallic Tights

blazer: BCBG via Macy's ($55) ~ dress: eight sixty (gift) ~ belt/necklace (I've worn it both ways!): thrifted in Switzerland ($20) ~ tights: Splash Metallic Tights c/o We Love Colors ~ shoes: Sam Edelman via Nordstrom Rack ($100) ~ earrings: Express (gift)

Date: January 25, 2011
Ensemble message: Guys, I'll be honest here... Tuesday I probably would not have picked this outfit to wear if I didn't have some We Love Colors tights to style up!  It was cold and snowy (story of the northeast this week), and really dressy for sitting in front of my computer all day.  But you know what?  I LOVE this outfit!!  I am so psyched to show you that funky tights can be worn in the office!  The key here is to mute everything else... similar color palette, simple accessories, and voila!  I got compliments all day... at least when I took a breather from the computer screen ;)

I think I really like this outfit because you can wear it to a number of events... big presentation day, a date or night out, or even a job interview if you're in a creative industry.  And it can carry you from day to night as well!  I quickly want to point out for those of you who are now inspired to purchase a pair... these are 100% nylon vs. 90% nylon/10% lycra, like my navy and rust pairs.  So, they are a little thinner and don't "snap" back into place like the others do.  Just a heads up!  They are still worth it because they are so gosh darn fun! :)

Last reminder!!  Tomorrow at noon EST is the deadline to enter the We Love Colors giveaway!!!
Wednesday, January 26, 2011

We Love Colors: Rust Tights

sweater: JCrew ($?? olllddd) ~ skirt: Kensie via Macy's (free with giftcard) ~ tights: Nylon/Lycra Microfiber c/o We Love Colors ~ shoes: Kensie Girl via Century 21 ($20) ~ necklace: Aerie ($5)

Date: January 26, 2010
Ensemble message: Today's weather was snowy and work consisted of resolving a ridiculous amount of issues with a new system.  But let's cut to the chase... yes, I am wearing super duper bright tights!!!  I chose rust color thinking that it would be a darker, more coppery color.  Totally wrong, haha!  In any room that is not dim, these tights are orange.  Like, hot sauce orange, which I ironically spilled all over my skirt shortly after taking these pics (oops).  Don't get me wrong, I'm still digging the color... but this pair will probably be reserved for weekend wear only.  I wouldn't want to blind anyone as I walk from meeting to meeting ;)

Otherwise, I really did like this outfit.  And, I scored these Kensie Girl ankle boots for just $20 at Century 21!!  Though we are already at the end of January, there is still a ton of snow in the forecast for the northeast and we probably won't thaw out until April.  Plus, I will be in Utah for a week-long ski vacation next month, and I wanted another pair of shoes to wear besides my tall, chunky Sorels.  I will definitely be wearing the heck out of these!

Just another reminder - enter to win a free pair of tights!  Giveaway ends on 1/28 at noon!!
Tuesday, January 25, 2011

We Love Colors Giveaway!

We Love Colors is giving one Employed Panache reader a pair of microfiber tights in the color of their choice!  The possibilities are (almost) endless!  Have a funky colored dress and sick of wearing black tights with it because you can't find the right color?  Enter to win!  Wear lots of neutrals and would like to break it up with some color?  Enter to win!!  There are 3 super easy ways to enter - so what are you waiting for??

Mandatory Entry
Visit We Love Colors and leave a comment* saying which color you would choose
(don't worry, you can change your mind if you win ;)

Bonus Entry 1
Become a fan of We Love Colors on Facebook or Twitter, then leave a 
comment* here telling me that you've done so.

Bonus Entry 2
Follow Employed Panache in whichever way you choose (see left side), then 
leave a comment* here telling me that you've done so.

*During my last giveaway, I discovered that some browser & operating system combinations do not properly load Disqus for comments. If you are experiencing difficulty commenting, please e-mail me your comment and I will count you in!

This giveaway will end on noon Eastern Standard Time on Friday January 28th.  A winner will be announced that afternoon!
Monday, January 24, 2011

We Love Colors: Navy Tights

cardigan, t-shirt, & belt: Target ($15, $7, & $17 respectively) ~ skirt: Gap (gift) ~ tights: Nylon/Lycra Microfiber c/o We Love Colors ~ shoes: Marc Fischer via Macy's ($36) ~ earrings: Jess LC ($15 Black Friday sale)

Date: January 24, 2011
Ensemble message: Today marks the first day of We Love Colors week here on Employed Panache!  The lovely folks over at WLC sent me a few pairs of tights to review, so I am going to mix them into my outfits this week.  I have to say... I'm pretty darn cheap thrifty when it comes to buying tights.  I tend to put runs in them easily, so I go with whatever costs the least.  And my mom tends to buy me tights whenever she sees them on sale but never asks me to pay her back... yes, I'm totally an adult.  (Hence why I never highlight them in my outfit details ;)  But these tights from We Love Colors - they are a whole new level of thick!  I can tell that they'll last me awhile, which is great.  And thick equals warm, which was key this morning as I commuted to work in 2 degree weather.

So I must confess you guys... I feel like I cheated today as I got dressed.  I pretty much wore this same exact outfit on Saturday (new tights included - I couldn't wait!), but with a graphic tee and boots.  I was happy to remix this wool skirt into a weekend outfit - it's a great way to extend your wardrobe!  But when I woke up today feeling pretty lazy (like most Monday mornings) and saw the skirt and cardi hanging out on my dresser, I could not resist transitioning it all into something more work appropriate.

Also, We Love Colors will be giving a pair of microfiber tights to one lucky reader in the color of their choice - look for the giveaway details tomorrow!
Friday, January 21, 2011

Snowy Friday

shirt: Gap ($20ish) ~ jeans: Target ($14) ~ cardigan: Gap (gift) ~ scarf: Ralph Lauren (gift) ~ belt: from another pair of pants ~ boots: Sorel (gift)

Date: January 21, 2011
Ensemble message: Well, with only 4 or 5 inches of snow on the ground and none falling from the sky at 7am, I had to go into work!  To keep warm while cleaning off the car, my Sorels were a must.  I did bring other shoes in for the office, however, to look more professional and because the boots are about 1/2 a size too big ;)  The rest is just comfy and cozy, but nice enough to meet up with friends for happy hour after work.

Hope you enjoy the non-outfit pics... it was just to pretty this morning NOT to post them!  Happy Friday and have a wonderful weekend everyone! :)
Thursday, January 20, 2011

Working From Home

sweater:  forgotten men's brand via Daffy's ($16) ~ pants: Calvin Klein via Filene's Basement ($24) ~ toe socks: gift

Date: January 18, 2011
Ensemble message: Since the northeast has been getting consistently hit with snowy and/or icy weather, I have been stuck working from home 3 days already this year!  Typically I haven't taken outfit photos on these days, so I figured I would give you guys a peek into how I dress when working from home.  While there are many days that I work in my pj's or gym clothes, I do like to push myself to shower and get dressed, even if I'm super casual.  So on Tuesday, I donned a soft sweater, roomy pants, and toe socks.  Toe socks make any dreary day better ;)

I find that if I need extra motivation or energy to keep me going, I will treat the work from home day like a regular day and "get ready" (though I probably won't put on make-up or put product in my hair).  I think that if I ever had a gig where I worked from home most days, I would stick to some sort of routine to get me up and moving.  How about you?  Do you get dressed on work from home days??
Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Simple & Sweet

sweater: INC via Macy's (gift) ~ shirt: H&M ($15) ~ pants: Target ($22) ~ boots: Chinese Laundry via Macy's ($65) ~ earrings: Arizona boutique ($7)

Date: January 19, 2010
Ensemble message: Since returning to NJ, I've only wanted to dress cozy and warm.  Between the snow/ice and post vacation blues, I've had zero desire to wear a skirt or dress.  I know, very unusual for me!  Since my energy is still low/depressed, it's easier to just go with it.  (Aren't you supposed to be re-energized following a vacation?!  Maybe I need a couple more days...)

I also have plans after work tonight - yes, on a school night!  I am meeting a friend to review her resume and talk careers, so pants felt right for a working session at Starbucks.  Then, since I'm a super rebel, I am meeting The Husband and In-Laws for dinner.  Something tells me my energy will not be much higher tomorrow morning... but all totally worth it :)
Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Playing Catch Up

Hi everyone!  Well, I'm back from my little vacation and I'm trying my hardest to catch up.  I don't have a new outfit post from yesterday OR today due to lack of free internet, plane delays, and bad weather forcing me to work from home in my pj's.  Plus, my bloglovin' reader is about to explode (I'll tackle that later).  But one step at a time... I did get a couple exciting e-mails and tweets while I was gone!

As you see from the above picture, Gabby over at The Working Girl's Shoe Closet awarded me the Stylish Blogger Award!  I'm very honored as this is my first blog award... and, this girl has a shoe collect to die for, so I trust her sense of what's stylish ;)  As an award recipient, I should be providing you facts about myself and then passing on the award.  As in real life, here in the blogosphere you must make compromises when crunched for time.  I definitely want to pay this award forward to the following blogs, in no particular order:

The New Professional (another awesome professional style site!)
Free Honey (one of my first blogger connections, love these ladies)
Bow Ties Are Cool (for the adorable geek in all of us... or at least me :)
Sparrow & Urchin (because she listens to awesome music)
Sammy Davis Vintage (this girl has amazing energy!!!)

Also, last Friday Employed Panache got a mention in The New Professional's Executive Summary!  Angeline enjoyed my post on being physically present at work.  In addition, Ms. Career Girl published my corresponding guest post on being mentally present at work.  Check both out and be sure to check the comments too - these articles are applicable to both your work life and personal life!
Friday, January 14, 2011

Remix: Chambray Shirt

(If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I am away for a long weekend. But, I haven't forgotten about you readers!  I scheduled a couple posts for while I am gone... enjoy! :)

Breathing Like Little Ghosts ~ Been Dazed & Confused ~ Laid Back Chambray ~ Feminine Lumberjack

While I try to be creative and wear new outfits everyday, there are certain pieces that are consistently in rotation.  One such item is my blue chambray shirt that I picked up from Old Navy at the end of the summer.  I was a little doubtful that I would be able to really mesh it into my wardrobe, but now I find that I'm wearing it often, especially on the weekends.  The button down style keeps it polished, but the looser fit makes it fun.

Which look is your favorite??
Thursday, January 13, 2011

Studs & Stripes

(If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I am away for a long weekend. But, I haven't forgotten about you readers!  I scheduled a couple posts for while I am gone... enjoy! :)

turtleneck: Target ($10ish) ~ open cardi: DKNY via Filene's Basement ($24) ~ shorts: Anthropologie ($35) ~ boots: Chinese Laundry via Macy's ($65)

Date: December 29, 2010
Ensemble message: This outfit was worn right after Christmas, while my offices were deadly quiet.  There was still a lot of snow on the ground from the blizzard so I needed to keep warm.  Didn't want to wear pants, but wasn't feeling a skirt either... so I went with my trusty wool shorts.  I had just scored this great DKNY open cardigan from Filene's Basement too, so I was eager to wear it :)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Blog Skirt

turtleneck: Banana Republic ($?? pretty old) ~ skirt: Anthropologie ($35) ~ boots: Bandolino via Macy's ($85ish) ~ belt: UO ($14) ~ necklace: DIY

Date: January 11, 2011
Ensemble message: I didn't have too much going on at work yesterday, so I went for a skirt and boots combo.  This skirt has graced the pages of Employed Panache several times, and Jonna Martin actually referred to it as "The Blog Skirt" - haha! :)  I am going to start doing remix posts, starting Friday... it won't be this skirt this week, but I'll feature another EP fave!

Not much else to say today... work has been crazy so my mind's a little burnt.  But how cute is my pup Donna?! ;)

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