Sunday, October 6, 2013

Bagging Some Basics for Fall

I had a very successful shopping expedition last week.  In no time at all, I added some great new basics to my fall/winter wardrobe.  By now, you all know about the versatility of a wardrobe of neutral basics (see “A Wardrobe for All Seasons”).  

And, it doesn’t get more neutral and basic than black and white; so, now that White House Black Market carries petite sizes (Wahoo!), I went straight there to bag some black trousers. 

White House Black Market Bootcut Seasonless Pants - $88
I snagged these great slim cut, black pants in petite size 00!!  Yeah!  The gabardine material makes them absolutely seasonless.  They fit like a glove and a bit of stretch (6% spandex) makes them comfortable no matter how you move in them.  The boot cut is perfect over any heeled shoe or boot, and the two-button waistband sits beautifully just a smidge below the waist.  Oh, and you have the option to machine wash or dry clean.  Don’t you just love having choices? 

They did not have a good selection of petite tops, at least in the Cherry Hill Mall store, but the salesgirl, Nicole, who was super helpful and delightful, assured me they would be getting a larger selection of petite pieces over time and, in the meantime, they could order anything I liked on line for shipment directly to the store, thus avoiding a shipping charge chez moi.  I may take her up on that. 

 Shopping hints:

·       When you find a helpful and knowledgeable salesperson, like Nicole, in one of your favorite clothing stores, make her your retail BFF; 

·       Make sure she knows exactly what you’re looking for as soon as you go in to the store – “I’m looking for a pair of black pants today;”

·       Let her bring things in to you when you are in the dressing room (Note:  She knows the inventory better than you, so it saves you time.);

·       Let her bring things in to you she thinks might work with the pieces you have chosen.  Again, she knows the inventory and it always pays to try things on (Note:  If you want special attention from your retail BFF, shop during the week when there are fewer customers.);

·       As she learns your taste and your style, she will give you a “heads up” and put items aside for you. 

BTW, White House Black Market has added a lovely teal color to their collection, which they call “Lotus.”

On to Talbots to check out a great tweed jacket I spotted in their fall catalog.  Tweed jackets are a great wardrobe basic that look fabulous with jeans, pants, skirts, dresses, etc.  They are the perfect jacket to transition to winter coats.  In fact, except on a bitter cold day, a tweed jacket layered over a flannel shirt, woolen sweater and cashmere scarf can pretty much take you through the winter, especially if you spend a lot of time in the car.  I find a full-length coat can feel restrictive when I’m behind the wheel. 


Talbots’ Houndstooth Riding Blazer - $179
This classic, wool-blend jacket looks even better on than it does in the picture.  I couldn’t resist.  The faux-suede collar and elbow patches remind me of my college days when they were all the rage.  The two-button closure with short last is perfect for us petites.  The darting at the waist is so flattering and the peplum detail in the back gives it a bit of flair. 

Of course, (wo)man does not live by neutrals alone. 

Talbots’ Wool-Blend Shetland Blazer - $149
Hello, beautiful blazer in teal.  Actually, I was on the hunt for the perfect navy blazer when this classic Shetland blazer crossed my path.  Talbots’ color palette for fall features lots of teal and purple, colors that are in my personal (autumn) color palette.  So, Marianne, my retail BFF at Talbots said, “Why don’t you try it on in teal, and if you like it, we’ll order it for you in navy.”  Clever girl, Marianne.  Not only did it fit perfectly, but the color was just gorgeous with my skin tones, as I knew it would be; so….how could I resist?  While it’s good to have a plan, it’s also good to be flexible.  (Note to self:  Add teal to my list of neutrals.) 

Talbots’ Pima Cotton Crew Neck Tee - $29.50

I may have struck out on the navy blue blazer, but I did find this great Tee in deep Indigo (shown here in gray).  A classic top like this will be an absolute go-to piece for years to come.  When it comes to accessorizing, the possibilities are limitless.

Talbot’s Foulard Wrap Top - $49.50

I also grabbed this great wrap top with a subtle brown-and-white check that can be paired with solids, bold prints or stripes.  Mixing prints is easy, once you get the hang of it.  (For more information on mixing prints, go to “How to Mix and Match Patterns.)  Is there anything more flattering than a wrap top or dress on a woman with curves?  I expect to get a lot of mileage out of this piece. 


Talbot’s Paisley Wrap Top - $49.50
Of course, I just could not pass up this lovely paisley top in soft jersey knit.  There’s that beautiful teal again that I’m finding so hard to resist this season.  Oh well, Oscar Wilde once said that the only way to avoid temptation was to give in to it. 
Oh, and here’s the best part……………everything in the store was 25% off for Talbots charge customers.  Now, that’s the kind of temptation you should rush right out and avoid, if you catch my drift. 


  1. Dearest Marie-Thérèse,
    Wow, cannot believe how many things I keep recognizing or discovering when reading your posts. Cherry Hill... you mean that is just on the border of Pennsylvania isn't it? We were there with our Mauzie at the Hyatt hotel (no longer under Hyatt now) when Pieter had to meet with the CEO from Campbell's Soup at their World Headquarters.
    So that is Cherry Hill.
    You could have peeked inside my closet as I too have several black pants... and I did start out with Talbots when I first came to this country; still have pieces from them! Very timeless and classic. This was before I discovered the Escada Outlet Stores...
    Enjoy your special treatment; very smart advice and so true!
    Hugs and happy new week.

  2. Love the teal jacket and that is an interesting way to wear two collars which I often find tricky. I will try it.


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