Take Your Breton To Work Day


Sweater: Better Breton by me; wollmeise dk in natur and admiral
Skirt: J. Crew; similar styles at ASOSs, H&M, and bcbg
Shoes: Tabitha Simmons Lou leather pumps and there are a couple sizes left in this amazing sale; similar styles by Kate Spade and Sam Edelman
Lips: Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel in Showstopper

In light of my full-on sadface vis a vis the Grandpa Cardigan, I wanted to use a counter example to show why my sweaters need to perform double duty. Monday through Firday I work in an office. It's not overly formal, in fact I think I am dressed far more formally than many of my coworkers, but chalk it up to a conservative upbringing when it comes to comportment (on all other things, I am pretty sure my upbringing was pretty standard commie, pinko, UES, ACLU, NYT, ADL); Saturday and Sunday I am either not leaving my house except for groceries, or out seeing friends, maybe going out to dinner. And if I'm sitting in my house with no one but my husband to see me, I don't really need a wardrobe for that. Which is why my wardrobe is predominantly business casual. I have recently been adding to my jeans collection (thank you, sales), but when I think about knitting a sweater, I always think about how it will look at work and on line at the Whole Foods - because I am very vain and need to make sure the other insufferable yuppies aren't judging me on my clothing choices while I judge them on their carts full of frozen organic meals.

But where does a Breton-style sweater fit into that? It is a decidedly casual piece and is evocative of people not at work: people at cafes in France on vacation, drinking strong coffee and smoking strong cigarettes, and definitely unconcerned with formal dress. Yet it's also a navy and white sweater and navy and white are perfectly lovely, boring work colors. Ask me how I know.

I originally paired the sweater with a highly patriotic red skirt and while I wasn't turned off by the Happy 4th of July-ness of it all, the skirt is too big by a fair bit and looks sloppy when it hangs on my hips instead of on my waist, and it also made it a bit too long on my legs. So out comes the old faithful J Crew chartreuse mini, the navy tights, and the brand spanking new navy pumps. This last choice was probably a poor one as the amount of salt dumped in my office parking lot is dangerous to all but the most LL Bean-ish of footwear. I almost went with a navy blazer as well, but I thought that might be a) overkill and b) ill-fitting - this sweater is a bit too ease-y to happily live beneath a tailored blazer.

Red lips were an easy choice.


  1. This whole outfit is a ginormous YES. For work, for shopping, for just sitting around being cute.

  2. I do aspire to a life of sitting around and being cute :)