Jacket:  Basler (similar here, here, and plus-size here), Shell:  Top Shop (similar here, silk version here), Skirt:  Ann Taylor, Tote:  Longchamp (similar here), Shoes:  Cole Haan

Hello, and welcome to Polished.  I have always believed that my outfit is the first way I can communicate with the people I meet.  In college and law school, I took the opportunity to tell my classmates that I was a relatively normal (and maybe even interesting??) person, and to tell my professors that I was a serious and respectful student.  No one would have been angry (nor would they probably have noticed) had I worn jeans and a t-shirt to class, but I always thought that it's better to make a positive impression than none at all.  If doing so could double as my creative outlet, even better! 

Flash forward to my first year as a corporate attorney, and it felt like dressing appropriately was as much as I could hope for.  The confines of a conservative office setting, a wardrobe that consisted mostly of holdover pieces from my summer internship days or purchases from within the month before I started work, and a lack of creative workwear examples among the dozens of style bloggers I followed or women I encountered in my life left me feeling ill equipped and uninspired. 

Over the past year and a half, I've slowly amassed some workwear pieces beyond the dark suits, button-up shirts, and standard-issue viscose shells, and have found the courage to push the creative boundaries at work (a bit).  I will admit that there have been a few missteps along the way (as one friend put it, "Sometimes you have to cross the line to find out where the line is."), but more and more, I'm beginning to find that getting dressed in the morning is one of my favorite parts of the day (who doesn't love to see herself in the mirror looking sharp in a beautiful blouse, pencil skirt and stilettos!?).  I have come to love working in a more formal environment and am realizing that that does not have to limit my self-expression.  In fact, working within the confines of a professional setting might even require more creativity. 

So why did I start the blog?  I love following style bloggers but am frustrated by the lack of professional inspiration found in the blogosphere.  While there are so many creative outfit ideas, there are only two days a week when I can dress like the vast majority of bloggers.  And while I would love to look to my colleagues for style inspiration (they are already a constant professional inspiration to me), most (but certainly not all) of the outfits in the office are appropriate, but bland.  I aspire to be intelligent, original and polished in my everyday professional pursuits and in my personal style, and I want to find the other women who feel the same way.  

For those who are ahead of me in the work style game, I would love to hear and learn from you!  For those who are a couple years behind me and aren't sure how to incorporate personal style into your professional life, I hope that sharing my experiences will help you have a smooth (and fun!) transition--please feel free to reach out with any questions.  

So, again, welcome, and thank you for joining me.  Please comment below to share how personal style has fit into your professional life so far (or anything else you'd like to share!).  I hope you'll keep coming back for ideas and inspiration and look forward to getting to know you! 



Blue and Gold