September 16, 2015

Swooping In on Sale Items at Banana Republic

When I started Greater Lengths, the first few months...years...I was shopping A LOT. Then things changed.

First off, I actually like Taylor Swift now. You guys, her most recent album? I can't stop loving every song. Not to say that I think her music has any staying power - okay, maybe "Blank Space" just a little - but it's so hard not to bop your head along.

Second, remember my self-imposed hiatus on shopping and extra expenditures? It's caught up to me. My closet, while still well-stocked, is aging and needed a few replacement.

Enter my recent purchases at Banana Republic. I wanted to share them here, with you, because if you're even marginally interested, now is the time to buy. Banana is offering an extra 50% off on sale items - all of these which are in that category.

Click on the pictures below to be taken straight to the retailer.  Use code BRSALE for an extra 50% off sale items. You won't regret it.

First, this bronze hi/low skirt from the Banana Republic Heritage collection. Oh my swoops! I love the subtle grading of this skirt. I know the idea is "modest clothes" on this blog, but before anyone gets all high and mighty on me, I'm on the modesty spectrum that a little ankle is okay.
This is the photo that caught my eye, which made me want this skirt.

It doesn't have as rich of a color in real life, but ladies, for $35, I'm willing to overlook that. It comes a few other colors; the soft pink is actually more gorgeous in person. As a head's up, this skirt has side slits. I plan to sew mine up but don't be surprised if you get it! Finally, I plan to wear mine lower on my hips; if you wear it at your natural waist - it will be a true midi skirt. Wear it low = midi maxi skirt.

I'm also VERY excited about this next piece. I saw it another time I was in Banana (I guess this has been my go-to store lately? It must be, because it's the only place I've shopped in the last 6 months and I've only shopped once or twice in the last 6 months. I digress.)

I love long blazers. They're truly a versatile piece. For example, in this photo, this woman is wearing it over a jumpsuit - which reminds me, I need to pair this with MY jumpsuit - but I foresee myself wearing this 1) with any of my slim-fit ankle work pants for a professional look, 2) with my polka-dotted black maxi with the red belt for social events, 3) with any of my colorful button-down blouses to neutralize the color for date nights (that is, if I could get a date), and 4) over a casual t-shirt when I go chop off my hair this weekend (I need a memorable outfit for the occasion!). Oh, with a chambray top...just thought of that one.
I'm not gangly tall (think Taylor Swift) but I am 5'7", and even on me it comes below my butt by at least an inch. If you're looking for a VERY stylish blazer that is universally flattering, this is what you want RIGHT NOW (seriously, before it's no longer on sale and/or gone).

My last two purchases were to beef up the casual classy tops. Stripes are timeline (think Audrey Hepburn, as I often do). These are light and airy tops with a lot of length. They're great untucked with a pair of boyfriend jeans or tucked into a pair of wide-leg trouser jeans (or with that blazer I posted above). At $10 and less for the tops, they're too good NOT to own.

I went for the gray dolman and blue t-shirt, but I think each and any color will become a go-to in your modest fashion closet.

June 10, 2015

[Modest Gym Clothes] A Muslim Woman/Workout Fanatic's Dream Closet 2.0

Two years ago, I published a post on modest workout wear.That post has become, by far, the most popular post I've done. This to me says the sportswear industry is lacking when it comes to providing clothing options for women who seek more coverage in their fitness gear.

Since items from the original post no longer are on sale, here is an updated version of the post with items available for purchase. There's a LOT in this post so make sure you scroll all the way to the bottom.

Click on any image to be taken to the purchase retailer. Be sure to check out the post on modest swimwear too - base layers, swimwear tops, and swimwear pants and bottoms.

Modest Workout Tops

Longer length workout shirts are hard to come by. Even when you think it's long, you do one overhead lift and all of a sudden, everyone can see your six-pack abs (we are talking about one's goals here, right?).

The Nike Women's Epic Long Training top - available here - is not just super-long, but also super lightweight with Dri-Fit technology. It's available on Amazon and at Dick's Sporting Goods stores. Thank you to Aquilla, who pointed this top out to me!

This Nike Dri-Fit Crew Shirt is not as long as the top above, but has a loose fit, and for those who don't like long shirts with their loose bottoms, this shirt ends just below the waist, so you don't feel like you're layered in swaths of cloth.

Another longer length, Nike Dri-Fit shirt, this top offers a more fitted look but with a longer length.

Still looking for that perfect long sleeve shirt? More here! Just remember that if you're working out in the summer heat to pick something that is light weight and loose-fitting. The more fitted an article of clothing, the more heat you'll retain.
In the summertime, I like to alternate between loose-fitting long sleeve and tee shirt workout tops. I fall in the middle of a spectrum where I don't wear sleeveless, but don't mind a tee shirt here or there. For those of you like me, here are a few shorter sleeves.

June 9, 2015

Bahama Mama: Modest Swimwear (Part 3 - Swim Tights and Surf Leggings)

Check out part 1 and part 2 of this series on modest swimwear!

It astounds me that in all the years of swimming, I never considered swim pants or surf leggings as an option for swimwear. Granted, times have changed since I was a kid and these items, previously hidden deep in the pages of print catalogs that had to be actively sought out and subscribed to, are now readily available for discovery online. (Oh, what a marvelous thing, this internet!)

Part 3: Swim Tights and/or Surf leggings
In preparation for my trip to Morocco last year, I purchased a pair of surf tights. Later in the year, I was gifted by Coolibar, the Australian swimwear company, with a pair swim tights. What difference these two items made.

Water just rolled off my legs, allowing me to glide more easily while in the ocean. They are quick-drying, releasing water easily, which prevents the feeling of wearing an anchor at your waist, or the floppy mess cotton or sport pants leave at your ankles.

Do yourself a favor and get a pair of swim tights, surf leggings, or swim pants! See below for a few options of each.

June 5, 2015

Bahama Mama: Modest Swimwear (Part 2 - Swim Tops, Tunics, and Rash Guards)

For part 1 of this ongoing series on modest swimwear and how to get it, start here.

Modest swimwear. Those words seem to be a paradox of each other. If you're dressing modestly, you can all but forget the beach exists. If you plan to swim, you can all but forget that modesty exists.

But these things, my friends, do live in harmony.

Yesterday I talked about, how after years of shying away from water activities, I finally decided to come up with a functional alternative to the current modest swimwear options. The first step, have a solid base layer (see more by clicking here). Once you have a base layer, build on the foundation.

You know that vision of Bo Derek rising out of the water and whipping her hair back and forth? It's not possible in a drenched, weighed-down cotton shirt. Working that scene in a cotton tee is more likely to lead to a version of you struggling to get out of the water, looking like an inebriated Frankenstein fighting with a gorilla on your back.

Cotton is fabric that is meant to absorb. It's pretty much a sponge.By replacing that cotton shirt with a surf shirt, you can recreate your Bo Derek moment however you like.

Surf Shirts and Rash Guards
Surf shirts and rash guards are to water what wicking shirts are to sweat. Technical wicking fabric, the type that many sports shirts are now made of, are designed to pull wetness away from your skin and allow it to evaporate quickly. Surf shirts and rash guards are made of fabric designed to absorb little water, pull it away from your skin, and to enable it to dry quickly.

Surf shirts and rash guards come in all brands, price points, and sleeve lengths. Typically, a rash guard will be a tighter fitting product, though many exist that are are fitted without being tight. I own a surf shirt by Roxy and a rash guard from a brand called Sporti, both of which I used on my recent trip to the Bahamas. Sporti is an in-house brand developed by swimwear merchandiser, SwimOutlet. Despite Roxy having a more prominent footprint in the swimwear industry, I liked the Sporti guard more, as it had a longer length that fell just past my bottom. It also felt sleeker in the water and dried faster.

Being almost 5'7", what is tight on me may not be to my best friend Amie, who stands 5'0". Keep that in mind as you click the images below.
Swim Tunics from Coolibar
I am very specific to citing Coolibar for their swim tunics. I don't know of any other place that offers a long-sleeve tunic top that's meant for swimming and offers the same type of coverage without decrease in function as Coolibar does. They are quite a bit pricier than the surf shirts and rash guard options but I think for the utility they provide, they are worth the purchase. If you see this on 6/5/15, you can navigate to their site and get 10% off your purchase!

These swim tops from Coolibar come in 8 colors and 4 prints. Click on the picture today to get yours!

Next time, part 3 - modest swim bottoms!

June 4, 2015

Ramadan Capsule Collections: What Mango Did Wrong and What Tommy Hilfiger Is Doing Better

At this point, you may have already heard about the Mango Ramadan 2015 collection, to be released in stores in the Middle East and online, on June 8. If you haven't heard - here's the gist: Mango, the fast-fashion retailer out of Spain, is launching a Ramadan collection on the heels of last year's DKNY Ramadan capsule collection. Here's a preview of a few of the dresses:

Does anyone else see a problem? For a religion that preaches covering up one's intimate body parts, Ramadan is arguably one of the times of the year that this is more encouraged. Yet, these dresses - gorgeous silhouettes with beautiful designs and details - do nothing to promote this aspect of Ramadan. For all the excitement and sharing, these designs are nothing more than ordinary dresses - not at all designed with the average Muslim woman in mind - released under the pretense of supporting Muslim women observing Ramadan.

I don't have a problem with retailers capitalizing on holidays; I'm all for a capitalistic economy and the free market - it spurs on competition and great products. This is not an argument to preserve the spirituality of Ramadan or the core of it - that's up to the people who observe it.

I do take umbrage with incomplete or half-assed market research, and these arm-baring, lace-backed dresses are prime examples of an industry in sore need of a solid strategic advisor digging into the details to capture an untapped market.

Furthermore, if Muslim women applaud the the arrival of this collection, rather than pointing all the ways to improve, retailers and designers in the future will think they can present any maxi dress repackaged as a "Ramadan" collection.

What Mango fails to do, Tommy Hilfiger does much better.

Tommy Hilfiger is also planning to release a Ramadan 2015 collection, to become available in stores across the Middle East starting June 15, 2015 - a week after Mango. According to Dubai PR Network, "The 11-piece collection includes four full-length dresses, two skirts, three blouses and two bolero jackets. Color tones embrace jeweled tones with emerald green, satiny black and creamy whites incorporated throughout." I suspect the colors were inspired by the oft-associated colors of green and white to Ramadan and Islam (which, really, is quite inaccurate). That's forgivable as these designs are so much better than Mango's.

Tommy Hilfiger's designs are everything that Mango is not. The sleeves are long, with drapes that don't cling, pieces that can be mixed and matched, and fabrics that can be worn as a single layer. More importantly, they offer full-length coverage and variety (these aren't all maxi dresses!) that is important to the modest-dressed Muslim woman. With Ramadan spanning 30 days, give or take a few, it's nice to be able to change it up. This is a designer that looked into what a Muslim woman may wear on the day-to-day or special events and provided her with a collection built around those requirements.

If these accounts are true, at this point, DKNY, Mango, and Tommy Hilfiger - major players in the US women's fashion industry - have created lines to coincide with Ramadan. Additionally, there have been reports of British designer Dorothy Perkins having released a Ramadan line last year, in 2014.

While I argue there is no such thing as "Muslim" fashion, it is nice to have special collections of clothes from designers and brands with fashion forward sense entering the market and giving us all one more thing to look forward to during Ramadan.

Post your comments below!

June 3, 2015

Bahama Mama: Modest Swimwear (Part 1 - Base Layers)

This series of posts is inspired by my recent trip to the Bahamas and the Atlantis Resort. My best friend Andrea and I went as a belated MBA graduation gift to ourselves.

In the categorization of travelers, I trend on the active, adventurous side. Short stints of laying around on the beach are fun but an entire day of that sounds like vacation hell. I like to mix it up, with some relaxation peppered into a day of activities, excursions, shopping, and adventure.

For a long while, my swim clothes consisted of cotton pants and tees, or I chose not to go into the water at all - both life decisions which made me very sad. After an embarrassing experience at Laguna Beach in SoCal a few years back, in which a major wardrobe malfunction* still leaves my face burning, I decided these decisions were no longer acceptable.

Modest swimwear has long had its challenges. The quickest go-to for most modest swimwear is the burkini**, which is not for me. In addition to what I feel is overpriced clothing, the design of such clothing does not allow me the ability to move freely without being weighed down, a problem for someone who surfs and swims multiple laps. A year ago, I came up with my version of "modest swimwear" - swimwear that enabled me to participate in water activities without compromising the performance of my experience. Additionally, these items are usually in a spend category much lower than the other modest swimwear options I've found. I'm providing some on-sale options for your modest swimwear needs below, but feel free to explore as there are plenty out there!.

Because of how long this post can be, I'm breaking it up into parts that will be released a few at a time in the next few days. That way, you can examine my list at your leisure and determine what, if anything, is needed for your modest swimwear collection.

**I fully support any woman, particularly those whose dedication and determination, creates a wider variety of modest clothing options for women. I would like if quality and functionality was not compromised as part of that dedication.

*You know that wardrobe malfunction I mentioned earlier? I wore a normal bra and cotton underwear under a cotton tee and gym pants. Cotton does not dry as quickly as polyester, and thus, I had a perfect outline of a bra as my shirt dried. Also, I was with my brother.

Part 1: Base layers
One absolutely must have a bathing suit as the first layer. I own a pair of bottoms and two tops (bikini top and tankini) from Athleta. A base layer acts as your sports underwear - giving you support where you need it as you move around. Buy something with a good fit, both on top and bottom; the better the fit here, the more comfortable you will feel. Avoid ruffles or twists - they will show through in your other layers.



June 1, 2015

Out and About and Now Back

Over the last year or so, my posting frequency has been choppy at best. Lots of surges of inspiration peppered by long pauses and halts as I've pursued other interests in my life. It's always flattering when I get a message or a like, or my favorite, getting harangued by friends who followed my blog closely and were upset my posting had died down.

Lately, the little twitch inside of me to find and shop and post has returned and with it, some ideas for change. Those will come later, but for now I say - I'm looking for help and I'm willing to pay for services! Mainly, a graphic artist and web designer. Feel free to reach me at

In the meantime, you'll start to see some changes here and there, and with it, more inspired posts. My goal is to provide you insight and access into places to shop for all your modest clothing occasion. If I'm not fulfilling a need, drop me line via Facebook or email.

March 22, 2015

How to Wear a Crop Top without Baring it All

I'd originally written off the crop top look as a second coming of bad 90s fashion. If you recall the days of Winona Ryder's prime, short tops and high waisted pants were the ish, though looking back now, the style seems balloony and almost like everyone was trying to make the mom look cool.

Then, last summer Taylor Swift and one of my personal faves, Jessica Alba, started showing up in crop tops left and right and if not the world, I took notice (and really, so did the world). By taking notice, I also began to covet, and then, the story of my life, struggle to style it more modestly - i.e., less belly baring, without losing the fashion element.

Part of the crop top appeal is that sexy little sliver of stomach, though I think the real appeal is the slimming affect that the look gives.

So, if the point is to keep the silhouette, then the trick is to keep the crop and cover up that sliver. My choice de jour is high waisted skirts and pants.

Since I am now keeping this skirt, I'm now in the market for crop tops to go with it. Check out a few of the market hits in the lists below. What do you like best?

Crop tops:

Cropped sweaters:

High waisted pants. The higher the waist, the better.

Layer a crop top over a tank jersey maxi dress or an A-line dress.

March 19, 2015

You guys, Emma Watson

Even though I'm now 32, and someone I like to consider classy and polished with an educated manner of speech, all bets are off my when my high school friends and I get together. These are the girls with whom I went through my TRL phase, my *N Sync vs. BSB phase (and for the record, *N Sync, always!), to my first concert, and who I still regularly exchange pop culture-fueled email threads. When we're together, we revert back to the speech and slang we used as slightly-awkward but now totally hot babes, down to the same arguments (Katie and Andrea can attest to this as we had the same conversation we've had for decades over which boy band is better this past weekend at my surprise birthday party)

I digress.

The point being, Emma Watson, you guys.

This lady is ON FLEEK. (I also just really learned how to use that phrase this past week so now it's EVERYWHERE.) Lately, she's been on my mind as I've committed to re-reading the Harry Potter series, so now I keep picturing Emma-as-Hermione, but also because workplace gender equality has been the ish (and rightfully so! I work as much as the dudes on my team! Hells to the nawh if they're getting paid more than me!) and Miss Watson is the brilliant genius who will go down in history as moving the situation forward. Have you guys been paying attention to her "He for She" campaign? No? You should. Just Google "Emma Watson He For She" and spend about an hour on every result.

She's got intelligence, assertiveness, and a vision of the future in which she is advocating for a cause greater than her. Also, let's not forgot she played one of the most feminist badasses of all time - Hermione Granger.

Finally, she represents that whole package in what she wears - classy, feminine, and quietly powerful. To celebrate Emma Watson using her celebrity for good, here's a tribute to her and her style.

Click on the links below the photos to get look-alike pieces to create this outfit!

Jersey gray maxi skirt // white button down Oxford blouse

Plaid button down // black culottes

Cropped red sweater // gauzy white skirt

Crossover silk cream blouse // black pleated slim ankle pants

February 22, 2015

[FAVORITE FIND] 2015 Modest Oscar Fashion (and your own Oscar buys!)

I don't own a TV or have cable service - you guys, anything that matters is streamed these days! - except for nights like tonight, when the Oscars are on and you can't obsess over the red carpet gowns.

Then again, internet again saves the day. A blanket thank you to all the media services out there who have top notch coverage of the Oscars red carpet!

A quick scan through, I've found the gowns I love and ones I don't. Since haters gon' hate hate hate, I'll leave the hating to other blogs and shows. Instead, I've listed my favorites, in order of "love" to "backup to the backup"

If you're a frequent reader, you know I love my sequins. This being a blog about modest fashion, I'm also all about anything with sleeves and long hemlines. Fortunately, the Academy Awards are an elegant affair and you can get at least one of the two in a red carpet dress. Sleeves, length, and style? You hit bingo!

So here we go with Farrah's review:

Best overall: Emma Stone

Except for the slit, this has everything I could want in a modest gown. Sleeves and sparkles and color and a fabulous cut (again, except for the slit, though I get it - sex appeal) - where can I get one in my size?

Best sequins: Anna Faris

SEQUINS! Be still my heart! Everyone knows my love for sequins - it's well documented throughout this blog - and Anna Faris hit it right on the mark with a classic silver ballgown with sequins. This is something I could see Audrey Hepburn wearing, it's so classic. While as a modest dress, we'd need to find some way to cover the bare shoulders and arms, but otherwise, it's perfect.

Bold color: Ava DuVernay
Have you guys seems Selma? If not, do yourself a favor and go see it. With all that the US has dealt with in terms of civil issues the past year, the movie is a great reminder of 1) what a group of committed citizen is capable of doing to change for the better and 2) we still have work to do, but we need to do it in a smart, non-violent way. Ava DuVernay's dress follows what seems to be the trend of the 2015 Academy Awards - the column dress. It's cut almost in a straight line from the hips, giving the person a more statuesque appearance (too bad they can't do this for guys, Kevin Hart). I love the elbow-length bell sleeves and the beaded embroidery across her shoulders and neck. And of course, color!

Best optical illusion: Solange Knowles
I don't necessarily love Solange's "dress" but it did make me look twice. It's a wide-leg pantsuit with an asymmetrical draped "window" style (I'm not sure if that's the right term but I remember seeing Taylor Swift's 2015 Grammy dress called that) that is a super win for modest fashion.

The Academy must have lost my invitation, because I am ready with a dress. Or rather, I would have been. I'd have gone the Angelina Jolie route - being budget conscious but stylish. Asos is my go-to for items in both categories and thankfully, it also carries plenty of sequin-heavy clothing.

February 10, 2015

Slackin' for Clean Office Style

I'm trying to more creatively draft a one-pager communications sheet for the process initiative I'm helping make happen (essentially, airport immigration lines will get shorter, faster, and capture information better!)

What better way to be creative than do a little online shopping? Since I'm at work, I figured I should have a work-related shopping search. I've  been feeling gray suits lately, and like the idea of having a gray as my go-to neutral. These boyfriend style blazers easily transition to casual evening get ups for dinners with the girls - with a pair of dark trousers or straight leg jeans and a casual white button down.

What I love about boyfriend blazers is that you do not constantly feel the need to shift the blazer back in place after it rides up, as short blazers do. Boyfriend blazers provide a relaxed, easy style while still polishing the overall look. And bonus? They tend to fall below the waist, which provides better coverage for those seeking a modest work outfit.

February 9, 2015

Less Talk, More Posting

Maybe it's because my birthday is coming up, or maybe in a pre-emptive strike to be prepared for any weddings or bridal showers or glamourous baby showers, or maybe it's just that I've perused one too many post-award show galleries, but I've got gown fever.

I saw a few friends this weekend who also 1) requested that I post more and 2) asked if I had any evening gowns up my sleeve. And yes, yes, I do.


I particularly love the skirt:


January 6, 2015

Surfing the Crimson Wave

One of the best things that came out of the movie Clueless (in addition to the hotness of Paul Rudd and a prototype for a wardrobe matching computer program) was the phrase, "surfing the crimson wave." When Clueless came out (when I was 12! geez!), it gave women everywhere a cooler alternative to the aged phrase, "Aunt Flo". It made getting your period sound almost sporty.

Thankfully, I have no major issues when I'm surfing the crimson wave, but the first day or two I'm EXHAUSTED (and usually super-emotional - WHY DIDN'T THEY GIVE THE BUNNY HIS CEREAL? I'll be in the corner crying over that). Today was no exception. I went to sleep tired, woke up tired, and felt downright "blah" the entire day. When one feels like this, it's hard to want to wear anything that has an actual waistband. Alas, my "Oakton Gymnastics" sweatpants probably won't be tolerated at work without a serious double take and maybe conversation if I'm feeling okay.

So I did the second best thing - wide and loose errything. I found my loosest pants - a pair of wide leg trousers from Asos - and wore them an oversized v-neck tunic sweater from H&M and boyfriend style button-down blouse. I felt like a professional in the Hamptons.

And I would do it all over again. Except maybe with more elastic in the waistband.

I highly recommend everyone have a pair of wide-leg trousers. They elongate your legs, give you a reason to wear heels, and give you a clean, modest look. They are also timeless items - transcending fashion trends. And of course - great for when you need a professional alternative to sweatpants.

Find your crimson wave style below!

Button down blouses:

Wide-leg trouser:

V-neck tunic sweater:

January 4, 2015

A New Year's Eve Outfit to Dream About (While Sleeping Through It)

Happy New Year everyone! How did you all spend your new year's eve? Admittedly, I'm not much of a New Year's person. To me, it's another day with a lot of hype - I mean, technically, couldn't any day be a new year's day to count the revolution of the earth around the sun? I prefer to create my own new year whenever I feel like it or think it's needed!

I rang in 2015 in bed, having gone to sleep a few hours before midnight, waking up the next morning, refreshed, relaxed, and spent the next hour going through everyone's new year's photos and videos (my favorite were from a Facebook friend named Melissa, who posted a "dance floor" video of a living room full of kids 4 and under TEARING UP THE FLOOR. Now that's a party worth staying up for!)

However, if I did have plans, I would have ensured my outfit would be all sparkles and sequins and enough glamour to make me feel shiny and new. What I covet most is my friend Tania's Alice + Olivia emerald green embroidered hi low ball gown skirt, which she donned for her brother-in-law's wedding this past fall. I can't get over how ravishing she looks.

What it lacks in sequins and sparkly it makes up in spades in glamour. I've already told her I plan to borrow that skirt multiple times, even if it's just to go on a Target run.

Going back to sparkly sequins and shimmery clothing, I love the idea of wearing a sequin skirt - be it, maxi, midi, or full out long. I love this look below from A Pair + A Square:

Looking for a sequin, sparkly skirt that's a bit more modest than the typical new year's outfit? These skirts below are on sale - most are under $50!

I'm really tempted to get this one - my 32nd birthday is on its way! - but I've put myself on a restricted spending limit so any new birthday outfits might have to wait this year. Alas, being a grown up stinks.

So what would I have worn from my pre-existing wardrobe? Shimmery, sparkly gold eye shadow, long dangly earrings, and this top:

I picked it up from the Neiman Marcus x Target collection a few years back and it's still a resident in my closet. With the navy Sabine pleated maxi skirt I picked up last summer and a pair of ankle strap heels, I'd happily have subbed for a new year's disco ball.

While this top is sold out, pick up one of these sequin tops for your next big night out.

January 1, 2015

Modest and Modern Work Pants

As I wrote in my first real post back, work has shifted to take a spotlight in my life. I've realized that now that I'm playing the part of a successful woman, I should probably try to dress like one too. Most of my work clothes were rapid-succession purchases when I first started at my firm, mainly an effort to bulk up a wardrobe that didn't feel enough.

However, I'm still on a budget diet - shedding unnecessary purchases until I've reached a point in my savings that I can take on the extra baggage. So, for now, I will look and touch but not buy.

While work skirts - those sleek pencil skirts and flouncy midis - would make for a stylish, chic silhouette, my height precludes the hemlines from my wardrobe (save for a few, which I wear with knee-length riding boots). Instead, I opt for pants and the ones below seem to be calling my name.

(As a note, the Banana Republic items are all an extra 50% off sale online!)

Work pants

Like the Britney song goes, "It's been a while"...

"It's been a while
I know I shouldn't have kept you waiting
But I'm here now"
-Britney Spears, "Break the Ice"

Oh hello friends. It's been a while, hasn't it?

I promise I haven't been ignoring you. Every once in awhile, a person takes on so much that they have to let something go. A coworker at work told me, "don't be a goldfish." Goldfish don't know when to stop eating and keep eating as long as there is food, which is the most common cause of death amongst goldfish. (I didn't at all research that last part, so don't take that as fact.) All this is to say that I began to put too much on my plate and had to put this, my beloved blog, on the backburner for a minute.

So what have I been doing since last posting on August 18? Glad you asked. (As a note, I would have illustrated this with pictures, but then I came up with a video to post on Facebook as a "year in review" and now I'm sharing it with you! Scroll to the bottom to check out my year!)

1. Working Girl: Since spring of this year, I had been working on transitioning from my current career in federal consulting to that in the fashion and retail world, specifically in the area of product strategy and marketing. In the middle of informational interviews and networking, another consulting company asked me to interview and made an offer in a federal consulting role. After an initial attempt to receive a counter offer panned, I made the tough decision to take the new job offer. And then things got crazy.

I took almost a week to notify my client about my decision. My client is a very demanding but very kind man - a tough balance, but I think he strikes it. After congratulations, he marched into my senior manager's office and essentially told her that he would be willing to front the money from his program budget to keep me if my firm made me a counter offer. Within 48 hours, my senior manager was able to make me a counter offer equal to the 30% increase the other company was making. Considering that by staying at my current firm, I was able to retain my network, my 401(k) firm contributions, and most importantly (to me), had the unarguable support of my client, which spoke volumes for the quality of my work and contributions.

2. Charity Work: The job offer commotion went down just before Fashion With Compassion (FWC), a beauty and fashion night a charity event I executive produced. FWC featured the first-ever Northern Virginia modest fashion stylist showcase and designer runway. The night was a huge success and raised over $12,000 for the Foundation for Aid and Immediate Temporary Help (FAITH), a social services organization in Herndon, Virginia that serves the Northern Virginia area. It was a TON of fun but I think I'm still tired from it. Did you attend? There was a lot to love from the night - the pop up boutique, the make up artist demos, the amazing DJ - but the swag bags without a doubt were my favorite! I worked really hard to secure the sponsors and am so proud of the contributions various local organization made to our attendees: free month-long passes to all women's gyms, organic, fair trade chocolate truffles, skincare samples, organic argan oil lip gloss, gluten-free and organic caramel candies, new product samples of dried chick peas, coupons for spa services, and so much more!

A huge thank you to my blogger friends - Miss Al-Nahdi, A Day in the Lalz, and The Vintageista - who stepped up for the stylist showcase. They brought their A-game and so much more to show women how to creatively dress their best while still maintaining a demure look.

Also, shout outs to Seema of Modern Mary and Safura and Shyema of Kotyur. Modern Mary debuted some new designs and Kotyur debuted themselves on the runway - both designer lines an amazing success.

3. Run run run: Finally, and maybe my most satisfying, accomplishment over the last few months was running the New York City Marathon. It was not my first marathon, or even my second. I've run a few before. This one is certainly my most proud in that I ran it - all 26.2 miles - while being a kickass career woman, while producing a fashion show and charity event - 8 minutes faster than I've run previous marathons.

It was such a brilliant run. The day was literally as cold as ice - temperatures in the high 30s and 20 mph winds (I saw a table full of water get blown over by the wind, leaving an effect like waves crashing on each other) but I just felt GOOD the entire time. Almost from the start, all I could think of all the amazing and wonderful things in life that had lead me to that moment: the endless love and support of my parents, the deep and enduring encouragement of my friends, and the confidence that I have in my abilities.

And now, here's the video. Enjoy! Here's to 2015!