My First

Ralph Lauren was my first “real” suit.   He is one of my favorite classic designers, and I especially love his timeless pieces. During my college years, I was a sold out Tomboy — jeans (very baggy jeans), t-shirts, and NIKE shoes.  I look back at pictures from college and wonder, “What was I thinking?”  I had several friends in college who wore heels, cute skirts and carried handbags.  I was not interested in handbags, skirts or heels, and I loved ponytails.  When I went to law school, however, I decided it was time to grow up and buy a suit.  I chose this navy pinstripe suit, which  has a pleated front, tapered legs, a long jacket and shoulder pads (old school). Some designers are still using tapered legs and pleats in suiting.   There’s no doubt that I absolutely still love this suit!

I picked up a newspaper to go with my old school theme and became engrossed in the article involving Reggie Bush, Albert Haynesworth, Chad Ochocinco, and Vince Young who will be moving to new NFL teams.  This is going to be a very interesting season and I cannot wait.

This is the first time I have ever worn this necklace.  I purchased it a few years ago at Barney’s New York Co-Op in Atlanta.  I considered giving it away several times, but I could not part with it.   I love the colors, the chunky knotting and the oddity of this piece.  I think I will put it to more use soon.  I am loving it today.

Suit (Ralph Lauren), necklace (Barney’s New York Co-Op), shirt, belt and cuff links (Banana Republic), shoes (Guess), watch (Coach by Movado).

I have always felt powerful in a pantsuit.  I was the commencement speaker at a graduation a few years ago, and a woman stated to me, “Back in my time, we would have never worn pants.”  Of course I informed her (in a professional manner) that we were well past her day. I don’t do what everyone else is doing, and if I had been born in the early 1900’s, I would have been the outcast who wore the pantsuit.

Many women are afraid to venture into wearing pocket squares, cuff links,  or huge (boyfriend) watches.  I love all things that are nontraditional.  I think masculine elements can be fun and feminine.

I love the Guess Carrie pump.  The heel is just the right height and it has a sexy pointed toe.

Well, it is time for me to hit the road.  I will see you on Friday, and I hope you are having a great week!

Shayla Jay

Shayla Jay


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  1. Haute Pink

    I love that suit with the bold white stripe and the necklace is beautiful. It amazes me that you are wearing an outfit that is apparently several years old, but it looks as if you could have just purchased it yesterday. This fit is well put together.

    • shaylajay

      I love classic, timeless pieces. I try not to do trendy pieces too much. If I buy something, I want to be able to wear it for more than one season.

  2. Minnette

    I love that suit and the shoes Shayla. I am getting SO many ideas from you!!! Have a wonderful weekend.

    • shaylajay

      Thanks Minnette! Those shoes are actually on clearance in Macy’s stores now. They have been around for at least 4 years. I have black and brown. Macy’s online has them for regular price, but if you find them in a Macy’s store, they are on sale. It’s weird, but if you want them, try to find them in a store.

  3. slgrey

    I love so many things about this post! This suit is exactly like “my” first- a pinstriped Liz Claiborne suit with a tapered leg, pleats, small cuff, long jacket with shoulder pads. The jacket hung very well. It’s a very nice suit and I still have it. But what I love the MOST are those masculine elements you brought in- the cuff links, shirt, and large boyfriend watch. Love it!! I’ve GOT to get a shirt like that this fall. I have a big boyfried watch, but it’s white so I plan to get something a little dressier. That necklace is amazing too. It’s given me a great idea as to how I can wear some of my scarves- simply make those knots every couple of inches all the way around. This look also has a masculine feel – sort of like the punch of color of an ascot tie. Anyway, thanks for the great ideas. You look great and congratulations on being the same size that you were in law school (lol). My suit is a bit “snug” now to say the least. lol!! But I’m hanging on to it for now.

    • shaylajay

      I purchased the necklace because it was “different.” It does have the look of a scarf that has been knotted. I love ascots also. Women can add feminine touches to accessories that were originally created for men. Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel exemplified this with her clothing. She wore pants during a time when only men wore pants. She defied traditional fashion and wore what worked for her, even if it made her look out of place to those around her. A hat, lace up oxfords, a tuxedo — all of these pieces can be transformed from masculine to feminine. Experiment and learn what works for you.

  4. Dawn

    Hi Shayla
    I am a pant suit woman myself. Your necklace is gorgeous! Glad u did not get rid of it. Great tip with the cuff links. Keep the tips coming! Love your blog

    • shaylajay

      Thanks Dawn!

  5. DJ

    As always you look great in that outfit. I enjoy your blog can hardly wait until Friday.

    • shaylajay

      Thanks DJ!

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