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In Good Company | Burgundy Sweater and Double Denim

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Fabulous Friday, lovelies!

This week I found myself getting called into the CEO's office. Full disclosure - I work in the government relations department at a trade association. It is a mid-size company (around 80 or so people) but the CEO is still not someone I see very often and I was deathly afraid that I did something wrong and I'd get fired. So it was with caution that I entered his office and sat down in the chair in front of his big mahogany desk.
"I quite enjoyed your PowerPoint presentation yesterday, Deborah," he said with a smile, assuaging my fears. "I like that you made the transitions very different from what I've seen before."  "Thank you," I said. "Although, I didn't use PowerPoint. It's another presentation tool called Prezi."
"Well, whatever the young people call it now." he said, rolling his eyes. " Can you teach me how to do that?"

So there I was, stunned that the CEO of our association, who makes a ridiculous amount of money and had been in the business for over 35 years, was asking me, a much younger employee only three years out of college, how to make a PowerPoint (or a Prezi presentation). Age difference showing much?? What a surreal experience! I wonder if I'll ever be that old boss who's been around for years, calling some young employee into my office to help with technology. Then that young employee would go home and blog about it haha.  

Have you ever used Prezi before? If you haven't, I highly recommend it - it's a fun presentation tool that offers things that PowerPoint just doesn't.

Top: Forever 21 sweater, Forever 21 chambray blouse
Bottoms: Express jeans
Accessories: ASOS bag
Shoes: Steve Madden Getta pumps

Quirk It | Chambray Shirt and Leather Leggings

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Marvelous Thursday, lovelies!

Something about the color palette of my outfit and my nail polish seems off but I kinda like it. I've been wearing this polish to DEATH - I got it in mid-January and I'm already halfway done with the bottle! It's just such an interesting color that is a gorgeous soft purple with taupe-ey undertones. The thing is, this polish is called "Warm and Toasty Turtleneck" and it really does evoke a warm and cozy sort of image. Therefore, seeing it paired with such a casual and edgy ensemble seems a bit... bizare in a way haha. I don't care, though - I like a bit of quirk in my outfits :]

What's your favorite nail polish to wear? 

Top: Forever 21 shirt, Forever 21 blazer
Bottoms: Forever 21 faux leather leggings
Accessories: LouLous pearl statement necklace, Essie's "Warm and Toasty Turtleneck," (Orly's matte topcoat), vintage Prada bag
Shoes: Michael Antonio pumps

Closet Strategy: New Years Dress

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I'm actually really excited to show you guys this post as I had to get very creative. I wore this dress on New Years Eve and while it's a beautiful party dress, I wanted to make it more wearable for everyday. The point of my Closet Strategy series was to show multiple ways to wear one item so that it would inspire my readers to try and get more mileage out of their closet items. While this gorgeous party dress seems like a one trick pony, I took it up as a personal challenge to make this baby work for other types of situations:

Outfit 1: Rocker Chic

I turned this dress into a top by wearing a skater skirt over the flouncy part of my dress. I actually really like how it turned out because the tulle underneath the dress fans out the skater skirt and it looks extra-flirty! To tone down the sequins at the top and the volume at the bottom, I added a leather biker jacket. This is a great outfit to wear to a concert or a night out in town. 

Top: H&M moto jacket
Bottoms: Forever 21 skirt
Accessories: Gifted skull necklace, Juicy couture clutch
Shoes: Forever 21 shoes

Outfit 2: Glammed-Up Casual

I think that denim has the ability to tone down everything, including the sparkle in this dress! I wore it as a top again but this time I added a flirty grey skirt like in the previous look. I think this is a great outfit for date night or drinks with friends.

Top: H&M  jacket
Bottoms: H&M skirt
Accessories: Forever 21 clutch
Shoes: Michael Antonio pumps

Outfit 3: All Tied Up

I channeled the 1940s and tied a chambray shirt over the top of the dress. I love how the sequins peak out a bit from underneath but in a more subtle way so it's more wearable. I also added a pair of oxford shoes for a more casual vibe. This is the kind of outfit I would wear to a picnic (once the weather gets nicer) or a carnival (can you tell I'm ready for warmer weather?)

Top: Forever 21 chambray shirt
Accessories: Bershka bag
Shoes: Zara oxfords

Let me know what you guys think about these looks - would you wear any of them?

Bargain Hunter | Double Denim and Moto Jacket

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Terrific Tuesday, wonderful readers,

I am proud to say that I got everything I am wearing at a bargain price - I got the Rebecca Minkoff wallet at TJ Maxx for $79 (I know, it's quite hefty but it was an investment and the original price was $180 so I don't feel guilty at all!), the white jeans I got from a Francesca's Collection end of season sale for $25, and my boots are from an old ASOS sale. I forgot how much I paid for it but I'm pretty sure it was less than $40. The jacket, however was my favorite purchase. See I saw this at an H&M for $50. I wasn't completely sure about it so I walked away but it stayed on my mind for the next two weeks. I finally broke down and figured $50 is not that bad for a classic faux-leather jacket. I took it to the register where the cashier promptly told me that it's been marked down to only $20 and they just hadn't changed the sign yet! Well that certainly made my day! It's been my favorite cold weather staple in my closet ever since. 

Do you have a favorite bargain purchase?

Top: Forever 21 top, H&M jacket
Bottoms: Francesca's jeans
Accessories: Rebecca Minkoff wallet, vintage aviators
Shoes: Asos ankle boots (similar here)

Quiet Day in DC | Peplum Top and Black Blazer

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Magnificent Monday amazing readers!

I'm back from my blogging break and I'm quite excited about all the outfits I have planned this week. The break has been just what I needed - it gave me time to catch up on my work and social life while taking a step back to appreciate other bloggers' hard work. I also managed to finish watching House of Cards. Anyone else watch that show? It's so addicting and brilliant! It really hits home for me because I used to be an intern on the Hill and sometimes people in DC can get very scary-ambitious (although no one I know would go to the lengths of Frank Underwood and just cut down people in his way - that's a frightening thought!)

What are some of the shows you watch?

Top: H&M peplum top, H&M blazer (similar here)
Bottoms: Express jeans (similar here)
Accessories: Loulou's statement necklace (similar by Lilly Pulitzer), Vintage Prada bag (similar here), Essie's "Warm and Toasty Turtleneck"
Shoes: Zara black pumps (similar here)

February According to Instagram

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I'm back from my blogging break!

I think this is the longest I've every been away from my blog but I've been having a lovely time just reading and appreciating other blogs during my break. There wasn't a particular reason I stopped - I just wanted a break. The weather was incredibly nice during the time so I wanted to just enjoy it without thinking about outfits to showcase or posts to write up. It was definitely just what the doctor ordered.

That said, here is what February looked like according to Instagram:

February is obviously not a very long month. A few outfit posts made it onto Instagram again, and I got a new wallet from Rebecca Minkoff. Thanks to all the people who recommended it in this post about what goes in my work bag!
I also made some homemade pocky to send to my best friend in Iowa. She's currently working there for a year and I figured she could use some cheering up in the dreary weather. 
Lastly, the Nor'easter made its way to DC - the second picture is all the snow that came! That's actually a picture of the place I usually take outfit photos! Isn't that insane? I believe we got about two feet. I'm so done with winter.

Also, this is something I wanted to blog about but didn't get time to this month but... My blog turned a year old! On February 6, 2013 I decided to write a blog called "Coffee, Prose, and Pretty Clothes," and proceeded to talk about exactly those things haha. I know a year isn't anything special but continue to be incredibly surprised and excited by how much this blog has grown since then. In the beginning, I was blogging to no one but myself but now I'm proud to be a part of this niche community of fashion, style, and beauty bloggers. Thank you so much for continuing to follow me on my personal style journey and reading all of my silly posts. 

Here's to another year!

Love is in the Air | Little Red Dress and Vintage Pearls

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Happy Valentine's Day everyone!

Whether you will be spending the day with a date or with your mates, I wish you all a very lovely evening! I'm actually going to be working for most of the day (go figure) but I have plans in the evening with a few friends. A Galentine's Day, if you will. Besides, the second season of House of Cards is out today on Netflix and I NEED to watch it with the girls (it's kind of a requirement for those living in DC and working in politics). 

What are your Valentine's Day plans?

Top: Forever 21 blouse
Dress: H&M scuba dress
Accessories: Asos bag, vintage pearl studs, Icing bracelet 
Shoes: Michael Antonio pumps

February Goal: Work on Love

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Happy Thursday, beautiful readers!
Photo from

The post you are about to read is very personal to me. I tend to not delve too much into my personal life, both here on the blog and in real life, because sharing is so hard for me. However, in the spirit of Valentine's day and the overwhelming support that I've received from some of my faithful readers, I think I want to talk a bit about my love life and one of my personal goals for this year.

To start this story I have to begin in High School. When I was 16 years old, I fancied myself in love with an upperclassman. We'll call him John. He and I were both super nerds and we ran the high school newspaper together. He was the Editor-in-Chief his senior year while i was a section editor (I was a year below him). The thing is though (and I feel a bit horrible saying this), he wasn't exactly conventionally good-looking. In fact, one could say he looked a bit... well not-very handsome. BUT he had this incredibly charming wit and a great sense of humor and to me that's just all it took - wit trumps looks any day!

One day I plucked up all the courage I could muster and asked him out and... well, he turned me down. To be fair he was very nice about it and asked that we remain friends but I was absolutely crushed. As vain as this sounds, I seriously thought that I must be so ugly if a physically unattractive guy would turn me down. I vowed that day that no matter what happened, I would never ask a boy out ever again for the rest of my life.

Flash forward eight years later - after one extremely serious relationship lasting four years and a number of flings - I find myself at a point where I'm finally able to let go of what happened. I think I was quite naive about how people are and I've come to realize that just as there are "conventionally handsome" men out there that I am not attracted to, I can't be attractive to everyone. It's nothing personal and it doesn't mean I'm unattractive or incapable of falling in love. It just means I shouldn't let it get me down. While I resented John at the time and even thought things along the lines of, "He lost his chance forever - he doesn't even know what he'll be missing!" (I was an emotional and angsty teenager), I don't blame him at all anymore. He was just being honest and I even appreciate that he told me he wasn't interested in a direct and kind manner.

That said, the damage to my self-esteem at the time was already done and in the past eight years, I have never asked a guy out or made the first move or anything! Living in the 21st century and as a self-proclaimed feminist, I decided that 2014 would be the year I change that. I decided to ask at least one boy out on a date... or at least for drinks (I need to start small!). I'm tired of living in fear and I'm tired of hiding from my past experiences. This is the year that I'm going to reclaim my self-esteem and be brave! After all, I have had boys asking me out, so I can be just as proactive as them! :]

Where will I find this person? Who knows? I'm not too concerned - DC is a big city and the metropolitan area is a big place. I'm sure someone will turn up. Until then, I will continue to enjoy learning to love myself :]

Have you any of you asked a guy out? Got any tips for a newbie?

Asterisk | Little Red Dress and Oxford Shoes

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Happy Wednesday, lovelies!

I guess all this Valentine's day mania is getting to me because I've been wearing a lot of red lately. I got this dress last year specifically for a casual Valentine's day date. Since then, I ditched the date but kept the dress. You know, priorities. Haha!

Do you have your Valentine's Day outfit planned?

Dress: Target dress
Top: Francesca's cardigan
Accessories: Forever 21 bangle, Forever 21 bracelet, Francesca's watch, Forever 21 satchel
Shoes: Vintage oxford shoes

I've got an Itch | Burgundy Skater Dress and Leather Jacket

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12:00 PM
Marvelous Monday, beautiful readers!

Recently I've been wanting to do something exciting. Don't you ever feel that way? I think that my life has become extremely routine. The first two years out of college  my life wasn't so mundane. I went to Tibet to teach English at a Buddhist monastery the first year out of college and I worked on a political campaign where everything would happen so fast in the second year. Now that I work in a slower office setting, I feel like I want to break out of the routine. Not that routine is bad, mind you, but I've just got this terrible itch to move my feet and do something crazy. 

Got any tips for breaking routine? 

Top: H&M Jacket
Dress: dress
Accessories: Loulous necklace, Icing wayfarers, Juicy Couture clutch
Shoes: Zara pumps