Take Your Pick Ladies

Category : UNCATEGORIZED

Half of the workforce is made up of women, and they are still underrepresented on the corporate ladder.  Research shows that companies perform better when they have more female executives—I knew that!   By having gender diversity, women can add their own perspective, experiences, and knowledge to the board.  Most of these companies are ahead of the curve when it comes to benefits.  They offer paid maternity leave, child care, and the option to telecommute until they return to work.  Most companies nowadays provide child care resources and referral services.  Below I have enclosed a great article about the 100 Best Companies For Working Moms. http://www.forbes.com/sites/jennagoudreau/2010/09/14/100-best-companies-for-working-moms/. Most companies are using strategies to help working parents-good to know.

Mindy

Help Your Local Area Bounce Back From Hurricane Sandy

Category : UNCATEGORIZED

For those of us who were lucky , in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, reach out and  help your friends and neighbors.  Here are some tips

In New Jersey

The Christie Administration has activated an Emergency Volunteer Response Hotline. If you are interested in volunteering with a variety of Hurricane Sandy clean-up activities in New Jersey, call the state’s volunteer emergency response hotline at 1-800-JERSEY-7 (1-800-537-7397). If storm conditions preclude the hotline from being answered by live operators, volunteers may call one of two backup hotline numbers: 609-775-5236 or 908-303-0471.  Volunteers may also send an email to rowena.madden@sos.state.nj.us.

In New York

To volunteer immediately, email nycservice@cityhall.nyc.gov with your name, email address, and borough. Someone will contact you with ways to help today and over the next week. The Red Cross is also looking for shelter volunteers; visit nyredcross.org for sign-up information. For opportunities in the coming months, go to newyorkcares.org.

 

 

To give money, visit salvationarmyusa.org, redcross.org.

Other Ways to Help

Support AmeriCares

Global relief agency AmeriCares is based in Stamford, Connecticut, and it is serving its home state as part of larger efforts to provide needed care items and medical supplies to areas hardest hit by Hurricane Sandy and its aftermath. Financial donationscan be made online. Call toll free, 800-486-4357, to learn about volunteer opportunities in Connecticut.

 Give Blood

The American Red Cross reports that Superstorm Sandy caused the cancellation of about 300 blood drives in 14 East Coast states, and it’s critical now to make up for s shortfall of nearly 11,000 units of blood. If you can give, here’s how to find a blood drive.

With busy lives, it can be hard to find time to volunteer. However, the benefits of volunteering are enormous to you, your family, and your community. And what better time to start!

 

To Wear or Not to Wear: Office Fashion Reviewed

Category : SHOP STYLE, UNCATEGORIZED

If you are out of style, you could be out of touch with what’s trending in society. If you look like you are out of touch, you could be passed over for that promotion. At the same turn if you are wearing every cutting edge fashions fresh from the catwalk, you could stand out too much at the office making you look like you are trying too hard, or worse that you don’t need a promotion. There needs to be a balance for office wear. What’s OK to wear to work, and what doesn’t cut it?

We’ve provided a simple guide on things to include for the typical workweek, as well as a few pieces to keep for the weekend.

Top 5 Things Not to Wear to Work

We’ve turned to Marie Claire and Forbes as our guides in what is considered appropriate and what’s a no-no in the workplace. Follow some of these tips when figuring out your workweek wardrobe.

Don’t wear capes – Ever the dramatic piece, a cape allows you to swoop in while staying warm. Swooping isn’t for working, and presents an over-dramatic flair. Keep the capes at home.

Avoid plunging necklines – While seemingly obvious, many women forget that brains rule the day in the office…not exposed cleavage. Necklines should be demure and professional. It may seem like the way to get ahead, but often it can spell demise for your position. Be known for your accomplishments not your neckline.

Don’t wear leggings and tunics – Let’s face it, leggings and tunics are comfortable. They aren’t exactly sweats, they are form fitting, and with a blousy tunic it almost feels like a cozy blanket hugging your body. Keep away from leggings at work! You aren’t there to lounge around; you are there to get work done and look professional. Keep the lounge clothes for the evening.

Stay away from hats – Even if you are having a bad hair day, this isn’t a good option.  Hats don’t add to a fashion forward look, rather it can appear like you are trying too hard. Baseball caps, cute fedoras, they all gotta’ go.

Go light on the perfume – Not only can you offend your colleagues sense of smell with your perfume, some may be allergic. Keep the heady scents for nights on the town, and spritz a light (very light) body mist instead.

Bonus Tip: Keep the flip flops for the beach. Closed toe pumps, peep toe kitten heels, and professional looking flats should be your mainstays. Flip flops are never appropriate, even in the most casual of office wear code.

Top Workplace Fashion that Makes an Impression

Enough of what looks bad, how can you look your best? It may seem boring, but conservative clothing should always be your main theme. That’s not to say you can’t dress up your outfits with a bit of color and some bold accessories, but you will want to steer away from wild trends (Katy Perry should not be a role model here) if you are trying to get ahead at work.

Tailored suits and separates – Tailored is the key word in work wear. When dressing conservatively, all your clothing needs to fit you well. Too tight or too loose clothing will make you look dowdy and unkempt.

Blouses – Crisp white shirts are the obvious classic, but you can’t wear that every day. Pair bold hues with a dark suit, such as navy blue, deep red, or royal purple for a rich pop of color. Choose light fabrics such as chiffon or silk for summer. Avoid sleeveless tops.

Blazers – Some office dress codes require the full suit to wear to client meetings, but how about those endless hours in between? A cashmere blazer in a neutral tone such as black, nude, or navy can keep you warm and comfortable when you jacket is just too much for answering emails.

Jackets – Did we say tailored? Don’t get a hand-me down or a one-size-fits-all suit. Find a few jackets, in the classic colors (nude, navy, grey, black) and use this to pair with brightly-colored blouses and a couple of bold accessories.

Skirts – Forget the mini skirt and the “I’m working on the farm” skirt (you know what we’re talking about). If you look like “Pretty Woman” or “Little House on the Prairie” you are going to cut it. Tailored pencil skirts and fitted A-line skirts at the knee are the way to go.

Pants – Don’t let them drag on the floor, and make sure they fit. Extra-tight pants won’t make you feel comfortable, and it sends the wrong message as well.

Trending Accessories – If you are looking to spruce up your work week wardrobe to add some flare use accessories to make basic outfits stand out. Here is where you have some fun with what’s cutting edge. A bold silver cuff, a long drapey necklace, or some pumps with pattern will give you a signature look without detracting from your professionalism.

Have questions? We have answers. Comment below on what style you think looks good (or not) for the office.

Pantyhose. Do I or don’t I? Pantyhose is the question.

Category : Fashion Headlines, UNCATEGORIZED

Back in the 1990’s it was standard protocol to wear pantyhose.  It was part of the working woman’s wardrobe essentials and the epitome of professionalism.  You wore them to dress up.  And most importantly you wore them to work.  No exceptions, the weather and your geography didn’t matter.  Contemplating not wearing them wasn’t an option.  Deciding the color was the problem.  During colder months pantyhose was a necessity for extra-added warmth,“magic” insulation.  How about the look?  Your legs were instantly tan and any imperfections were magically hidden!  I’m forgetting something aren’t I?  Yes, I am, the comfort factor and “runs”.  Probably the least comfortable undergarment a woman has to wear due to its snug fit and overall discomfort.  For me, it was almost impossible to get a perfect fit. And let’s not forget the clear bottle of nail polish each of us carried in our purse for those emergency fixes.  But, boy, have times changed.

 

Let’s fast-forward to present day, springtime of 2012.  Today’s world has a completely different view of pantyhose.  Don’t you agree?  For some the thought about whether or not to wear pantyhose hasn’t even crossed their mind.  It simply doesn’t even exist, nor has it ever.  I’m talking about the generational gap here, the difference between Generation X and Y.  For those of us that are part of Generation X, each of us at some point or another ponders whether or not: “Do I wear the pantyhose?”, “Can I skip the pantyhose?”, “Is bare legs ok?”.  If in-fact you even consider wearing them, right?  I mean depending on your age you may not even think twice about “not” wearing pantyhose, such as Generation Y.  Come on, we have all encountered this, right?  Yes, you have.  I know you have because I have, and so has every woman I know, regardless of age.

And lets not forget Kate Middleton’s latest contribution to fashion: pantyhose. After two straight weeks of pairing knockout designer dresseswith ’80s-style sheer stockings, the Duchess of Cambridge has proven that everything she touches-really everything-turns to style gold. Egg-crate color is out, and clear, almost fairy-dusted iridescence is in. But the song remains the same: she’s got Leggs and she knows how to use them.

 

 

 

I bet your reading this thinking “wow, wait, isn’t pantyhose a mandatory workplace requirement?”  Unfortunately, the answer is no.  The requirement to wear pantyhose may or may not be existent at your place of business.  It’s dependent on the company culture and dress code.  Company culture plays a big role in the world of today.  For example, if you work in a laid back, casual office setting then pantyhose is definite overkill.  However, professional corporate environments can and do have mandatory requirements to wear them as do professional office settings.  However, some do not due to the company culture or the present day trends of letting the woman decide what is appropriate to wear or not to wear.  There is a few tricks’ to getting around wearing them though.  One can opt for thigh highs, knee-highs, or tights.  With that being said, take into consideration your boss, their age and his or her view of what is and isn’t appropriate for workplace attire.

 

So…do I or don’t I?  Should I wear pantyhose to the interview?  My first day on the job?  My oh my, I’m not sure what to do?  When in doubt, wear the pantyhose.  For a more comfortable fit and feel opt for the thigh highs or knee-highs.  And ladies, let me do point out that you want to be sure that your skirt length is in “check” with the thigh-highs, you don’t want a lacey peep-show.  But, that’s a conversation for another time.  Remember you can always adjust your wardrobe on day 2 after you’ve read the employee manual and have had the chance to see the office culture.  It’s better to be safe than sorry.

 

What’s your opinion on pantyhose in the workplace?  Is it a must-have essential in your wardrobe?  Please share your comments on Facebook, Twitter and here on Spotlight.

 

Heather Pranitis, Guest Writer, signing off.  On a side note: Heather prefers thigh highs or knee-highs to traditional pantyhose.  For more buzz on Heather head over to …this & that…