Back to Blue

I was having a conversation with Hallie the other day about how my style has become increasingly more casual over the past few months. Since I switched jobs in August, I don’t necessarily go into an office every day. My last office was business casual — blue jeans were only allowed on Fridays. Part of me misses dressing up a bit more each day, but had you asked me how I felt about that three months ago, I would have said that I’d give anything to be able to wear jeans. Easier mornings, hello! The grass is always greener, isn’t it? I’ve been enjoying pairing loads of layers with my blue jeans this fall, but I feel like I should make the effort to dress up a bit more during the week. Easier said than done!

Two years ago when I was living in Chicago and working in a non-corporate environment, my style definitely revolved around jeans, a collared shirt, a sweater, and a third piece like a vest or blazer. Blame it on briefly working at J.Crew, but this equation became the building blocks for my daily outfits.

Collared Shirt (you know I love a chambray!) + Sweater + Vest, Jacket or Blazer.

Now that I’m back on my blue jeans kick, I’m back to my basics. This outfit looks pretty much like what I’ve been wearing every-single-day. I like to dress up my basics with fun patterns (like the one on this sweater from TJ Maxx) and statement accessories like fun sunglasses, metallic booties, and some jewelry (obvi).

I was stoked to find this designer sweater at TJ Maxx. I’m so in love with the pattern, and especially the little leather accents on the side zippers and on the sleeves. And don’t even get me started on the price! Great quality for a great price… Can’t beat it!

Fair Isle Sweater & Nude Lip Gloss via TJ Maxx

Expressing yourself through fashion, and knowing how to put together a great look—at great value, is what being a Maxxinista is all about. At T.J.Maxx you can score the unexpected to make your own personal style statement. Here’s to rockin’ your real deal. | Disclosure: Compensation was provided by T.J.Maxx via Glam Media. As always, all opinions are my own! Thanks for supporting the brands and collaborations that make Bows & Sequins possible!

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28 Comments

  1. 10.25.13
    Chris commented:

    Years ago, the office I worked in had uniforms, much like the guys in the plant. Same. thing. every. friggin. day. Grey pants, lighter grey dress shirt with company name and logo. Not having grown up with school uniforms or the like, it took me a while to figure out that wearing fun socks or a colored undershirt was the only way to express any personality. Boss didn’t really like it, but that’s just how he was. Sometimes you just gotta force yourself out of the “rut” you might be in!

  2. 10.25.13

    Such a cute sweater. I love it paired with that puffer vest. Since my job is really laid back and I don’t go out very much, my style has gotten increasingly casual over the past few years. I’m sad that I can’t buy certain dresses or skirts, but I just don’t need them. I do love a great pair of jeans though 🙂 xoxo

  3. 10.25.13
    Kimberly commented:

    Absolutely perfectly layering – love it all! You look so cute 🙂

    http://www.pennypincherfashion.com

  4. 10.25.13
    Kristin commented:

    Love the sweater!! I wish out TJMaxx carried it

  5. 10.25.13
    Sarah commented:

    Fabulous look! I love the sunnies and vest!

    The Purse Snatcher

  6. 10.25.13
    Lauren commented:

    This outfit is layering perfection! I can completely relate to how you feel. I long to wear jeans since we don’t even have casual Fridays, but I know that if I was always in jeans that I’d miss getting wear out of my quite expansive pencil skirt collection! 😉

  7. 10.25.13
    Rebecca commented:

    I love this layered look – one of my go to outfits for fall!

    agirlandhersparkles.blogspot.com

  8. 10.25.13
    Nikki commented:

    I love layers. I work in a really casual environment, but I still dress up some just because it makes me feel better – I like to think I work better when I look cuter (same goes for working out and work out clothes). Love this casual cute look. And those sunglasses are fab!

    Nikki
    thefashionablewife.com

  9. 10.25.13
    Trendy Mondays commented:

    I think we always crave a style different from our own at the moment. You always looks very put-together (casual or professional). We love your style!

    Trendy Mondays – your online fashion destination for independent European designers

  10. 10.25.13
    Vicki commented:

    When I started at my first job I wore more professional things, it was a nice change from the casualness of grad school. Now I’m more casual again, I guess it got old 🙂

    <3 Vicki
    wildeinthecity.blogspot.com

  11. 10.25.13
    AJ commented:

    Another fabulous layered look! I wish I would have snagged that vest in navy from BR, now its gone 🙁

    -AJ
    FitTravelerAJ.com

  12. 10.26.13
    Meagan commented:

    Love the look! You always make layering look so effortless!
    -Meg
    http://www.dillandscout.etsy.com

  13. 10.26.13

    Layers are key throughout the fall. I don’t know about your office, but mine is always swinging between too hot and too cold.

    Rebecca {at} Preppy Panache

  14. 10.27.13
    Kristen commented:

    Layering a button-up with a sweater has to be one my favorite fashion things about fall!

    Love this look!

    http://currentlyonline.blogspot.com

  15. 10.27.13
    Tia commented:

    I love how you mix high fashion with attainable brands! It’s such a great inspiration that and reminder that you don’t have to wear name brands to be fashionable!
    xo Tia
    http://www.bigcitytyro.com

  16. 10.27.13

    Loving the casual layers – That sweater is too cute! I completely agree about the grass-is-always-greener mentality, I may sigh thinking about my business casual office but I know I’d miss pencil skirts if it was more casual!

    P.S. It was really fun to meet you last night! <3

  17. 10.27.13

    LOVE this look! I work in a super casual environment too, and I find I have to REALLY push myself to wear skirts and dresses, as it’s certainly not a requirement. But isn’t it nice to have the option of wearing jeans every day? 😉 You look fab! 🙂

    <3

    Kelly
    kellyinthecity.com

  18. 10.28.13
    Jessica commented:

    I love that layering style equation and especially like this look! And so good meeting you at the Seychelles Brunch on Saturday 🙂

    xx,
    Jess
    http://www.thesteelemaiden.com

  19. 10.28.13

    lovely layering! And I esp. like the boots. :o)

    http://www.theprettydish.com

  20. 10.28.13
    caseable commented:

    Nice use of layering. Very casual, yet fashionable!

  21. 10.28.13
    Agi commented:

    Great outfit. I love that vest. I literally am living in it. So versatile.I totally agree the grass is always greener on the other side. I wear scrubs at work and sometimes it would be nice to dress up but then when i would have to dress up i would want to wear my scrubs. IT’s nice when you can have a good balance.

    Agi:)

    vodkainfusedlemonade.com

  22. 10.28.13
    Chelsea commented:

    I love all of the layers Jessica! I tend to be pretty no-fuss about my outfits so I really have to work at sneaking in layers. This sounds like the perfect equation to live by not to mention I LOVE your sweater!

    xoxo,
    Chelsea & The City

  23. 10.28.13
    Kodi commented:

    Isn’t kind of wonderful to not HAVE to dress up if you don’t want to? My job doesn’t require me to, and while I love to dress up when I want to, it’s so nice to have the option to be casual on the days I just want to be chill. Looking forward to seeing more casual looks on this blog! 🙂
    -Kodi
    grey et al

  24. 10.29.13
    Karen commented:

    Hi Jessica! I have been following your blog for over a year now. I love your style! I’m planning a trip with some girl friends to NYC. What would you say are the top stores to shop and places to eat unique to NYC? Places we don’t have down here in TN!

  25. 10.30.13

    You looks so cute in this! Great outfit! xx

  26. 10.31.13
    Dana commented:

    love this layered look! looks perfect on you!

    http://www.thecasualclassic.com

  27. 11.19.13
    mariana commented:

    Hi Jessica!
    Your blog is fab. Could you please share, where did you get the vest from? Thanks.