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What to wear with shorts

Categories: tops

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I have to confess that I am ambivalent about shorts. I understand their utility, but I always wind up feeling like throwing on a pair of shorts is the equivalent of giving up, like I could wear something cuter if I would just try a little harder. But there are times — baseball season, say, or August — where shorts are the most appropriate option for my life.

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Cheer up! A button-down give your shorts some edge.

The trick to making even the most casual shorts look stylish is really in what you wear with them. My shorts wardrobe (all two pairs) are basic chinos — durable, versatile, machine washable. I have no illusions about dressing them up (in fact, I’m not a fan of “dressy” shorts, or of shorts for the office — shorts are for casual wear, period). But I do want my shorts to be flattering, and I do not want to look like I just came from cleaning out the garage when I leave the house in shorts.

I assume you feel the same way about your shorts. So what do you wear them with?

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The classic white shirt: A primer

Categories: beyond 9 to 5, tops

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It is a truth universally acknowledged that a classic white shirt is a wardrobe staple. But where do you find a great white shirt? And how do you wear it once you’ve got it?

Simple. Let’s start with what to buy.

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Lands’ End Women’s Solid No Iron Pinpoint Cotton Shirt, $44.50


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Shopping on a budget: Best cardigans

Categories: basics, tops

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For the next few weeks, I’m taking your questions, because the whole point of The Working Closet is to get your closet in shape. This week, we’re revisiting the cardigan — on a budget.

When we talk about budget shopping, there are a few things to keep in mind. Rules, if you will. You’re welcome.

Spend smart. Resist the urge to buy any piece simply because of the price tag; unless you’re going to wear what you buy, you’re wasting your money, no matter how little — or how much — you spend. A bargain is only a good deal if it’s something that will work with your existing wardrobe.

Invest wisely. No matter how much you’re spending — $10 or $100 — the pieces you bring home should work for you; they should fit your body and your life and your style. Be open to investing in one really great piece rather than buying five so-so pieces; if you choose wisely, you will be able to wear that one sweater all the time, with lots of other pieces. And while you don’t have to spend $100 to get a great sweater, but the $10 needs to be as close to perfect as you can get.

Take care of your purchases. Treat that $10 sweater as though it cost ten times that; don’t just toss it in the laundry or on the floor. Make the effort to care for your clothes, and you will see a return on your investment. Hand wash, line dry, dry clean only when necessary.

Ok, lecture over! Let’s talk about where to find a great boyfriend cardi for spring. Here are my favs, all for under $40.

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Fit tips for the well-endowed woman

Categories: tops

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We live in a culture that loves big-busted women — at least, sometimes. If you’re a well-endowed girl, shopping for tops that fit can be less than a love story. So how do you get the best look for your boobs?

The key is fit.

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Diana wrap shirt, Carissa Rose, $80


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