Sometimes I like to throw you all a curve ball. You know, just to keep you on your toes and whatnot. And what better way to do that then to wear an outfit that, at least for me, is über professional and “teacherish”…
…Since this Thursday marks our first inservice day as well as open house at school, I thought I’d start breaking you in and getting you ready for my “I’m back to work” outfits. Here’s the thing though, most days my work looks don’t vary much from my any other day of the week looks. I’m sure there are individuals out there who feel that the way I dress for school isn’t necessarily “appropriate” for a teacher. I’m also equally as sure, that I could not care less.
I remember a conversation with a friend many years ago. She mentioned that when she was young she had taught for a year somewhere in England. She said that the school actually required the teachers to dress in jeans and to keep their outfits casual so that the students could better relate to them. This had been difficult for her because she was the type who dressed sharply professional every day.
Nine days out of ten, I fall somewhere in between the two extremes. The look of a well put together professional outfit is something I do like, but quite frankly, it’s just not me. I can do it, and pretty well in my opinion, it’s just not comfortable for me. You can’t go wrong with a good blazer, but I prefer it to be juxtaposed against a pair of distressed jeans (which of course I do not wear to work) as opposed to paired with a pencil skirt. By the same token, if I’m wearing a pencil skirt I’ll more than likely pair it with a graphic tee, sweatshirt or some other “not quite right” piece. That’s just me.
Does the way I choose to dress reflect upon my teaching ability? No. No, it does not. I’m good at what I do plain and simple; whether I’m wearing a tunic dress and over the knee boots or a suit and sensible pumps, the 27 years of experience and innate skills are still there. Honestly, I think the way that I dress makes me more approachable to the kids. Not that a more traditionally dressed coworker isn’t approachable…don’t go getting your panties in a bunch friends. I just feel that I’m more my true self when I dress for my taste and my style, thus making me happier, more comfortable, and more approachable. Make sense?
Ahh…this dress. This perfect beautiful Foxcroft plaid shirt dress. When Foxcroft approached me in regard to working together I jumped at the chance to beef up the “professional” section of my closet, but it was important to me to find pieces that were still “me”. This plaid shirt dress was my first choice. Yes, it’s a very business appropriate shirt dress, but…it’s plaid. And it has a super cool “grandfather” hem. That combination took it out of the realm of purely professional and gave it a hit of cool.
If you aren’t familiar with Foxcroft, which I wasn’t initially, I pulled this snippet from their website:
“For over 30 years, we’ve made it our mission to craft clothing built on ease and polish. Our story begins with a single shirt and a vision. The classic button-down, custom made for women. From perfecting the fit to adding signature details that make a Foxcroft shirt stand out from the rest, we didn’t stop until we got it right. The same commitment means we’ve made keeping up with evolving lifestyles a top priority. We built our own state-of-the-art facilities to develop exclusive non-iron technologies and fabrics with benefits you won’t find anywhere else. So every Foxcroft style works harder, performs better and looks impeccable longer. Today, Foxcroft offers a full range of fashions designed in New York City to meet the needs of the modern woman. Because we believe that effortless is more than a buzzword, it’s a way of life.”
And can we talk about the quality for a minute? This plaid shirt dress is one fine piece of craftsmanship. It is 100% cotton (I’m talking nice solid cotton) with perfectly stitched seams and buttons that do not budge. This is a truly well made piece of clothing. It’s machine washable/tumble dry, which is a huge bonus. It is in the washing machine as I type this so I’ll update you on that after it’s done.
I layered my white sleeveless blazer (um, vest actually) over it and added my own burgundy belt in place of the tie belt that came with it. And there was no question when it came to the shoes; the leopard pumps. Leopard and plaid is one of my very favorite print mixes and I pair the two whenever the opportunity presents itself. Something about that particular pairing seems a bit edgy, and yet, perfect.
Just about any piece of clothing/outfit can be made more “you” by tweaking the details. For example, with this outfit I added my own skinny belt in place of the belt that came with the dress and leopard pumps for some print mix. If the weather were cooler, I could have layered a long sweater vest/duster over it and added over the knee boots. Just the addition of an accessory, rockin’ footwear or a special piece of jewelry can make an outfit “you”.
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**Dress provided c/o Foxcroft, but as always, all opinions are my own.
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