What to wear to a winter conference

I’m off to an academic conference this week and it’s slated to be very chilly (ok just regular chilly if you live on the east coast)–here’s my work conference packing list for when it’s cold out:

Continue reading “What to wear to a winter conference”

Surviving academic conferences

My yearly national conference is coming up this week and it has me Amazon prime-ing myself so many items that I need to keep it together at academic conferences. Germs, lack of food, nerves…academic conferences are a nightmare on my body. But, keeping a few items in my bag goes a long way. Here’s what I’ve needed in the past.

Continue reading “Surviving academic conferences”

Conference packing, Spring edition

This week I am headed to a conference that poses a packing challenge because I am wrapping in 2 days of conference with 12 days of visiting my parents in Phoenix. This called for some extreme minimalism: 2 shirts, dress pants, 2 pairs of shoes, and a sweater.

I blogged recently about my hatred of dress pants, and the good news is I’ve found a pair I like a lot at Loft. I actually managed to make a conference outfit that feels like “me” this time around, also, which is progress because I really don’t enjoy business casual clothes.

I’ve started to think more seriously about building a business casual capsule wardrobe as well. I won’t be on the job market for another year, but I’m a slow shopper so I would like to get a start on this now. As part of a capsule wardrobe, I like to pick 4-5 colors and focus on buying clothes in those colors so everything matches (this makes packing for anything AMAZING!).

However, I’m not really sure what colors to go with on this. I would love to do black/camel as my neutral bases and blush (pictured here) and burgundy as accents. However, I can’t deny that I tend to gravitate toward navy and grays also. But, because I’m going to start with a small business wardrobe I think I should start with more limited colors. (PS: I just got these Sam Edelman flats and they are the most comfortable flats I’ve ever owned. Conference MVPs for sure).

What do you think? What colors would you go with? If you’ve built a business capsule, do you have any advice about what items to start with?

OOTD: Dress leggings

OOTD: Dress pant. leggings. The best invention??

Pixie pant from J. Crew

Dress pants for people who hate dress pants

This may be a problem that other people don’t have, but I really hate dress pants. They just don’t feel like “me.” I think it’s the combined memories of wearing really lame suits to high school speech and debate tournaments and the fact that dress pants seem about 20 years behind the skinny denim trend that makes me feel such disdain. Unfortunately part of adulting is ??? needing to wear dress pants sometimes? Even in grad school? To deal with these moments, I’ve spent too much time and money in the last couple years trying, buying, returning, and browsing dress pants. Now I can say there are four pairs of dress pants I’m willing to wear & one more pair on my to-buy list. Here they are:

1) The least dress pant: Pixie pants by J. Crew

These are basically leggings in a dress pant fabric. They’re comfortable and feel really cool with a long tunic and sweater. Downside, I don’t like tucking things into them, I think the front of them is just too…leggings…to get away with it. But for teaching, I love them. 

2) The most dress pant: Loft Trousers

I’m not usually a fan of boot cut, but with heels these manage to look pretty sleek, while still definitely being a dress pant. Good for feeling sassy at conferences. 

3) Skinny dress pants: Essential skinny pant from Loft

If you can’t get over the boot cut thing, like me, and still want something that qualifies as a really nice dress pant, this pair from Loft is my favorite favorite. They look high quality and still trendy. Also, they come in a tall and a petite inseam. Hurray!

4) EXTREME BARGAINS: Old Navy Pixie pant

Because we’re in grad school and $35 dress pants are the best. Also, comes in crazy fun patterns so that you can look like the cool teacher you are. 

5) Trendy AF: Everlane Culotte

Not sure these count as dress pants, but damn are they cool. Does anyone have them? I’ve been thinking about taking the $68 plunge for a while. I think these might be good “it’s summer and hot but I still need to wear pants I GUESS” pants.

This concludes all the pants I’ve scoped out to address dress-pant phobia. I’ll be back tomorrow with how I style them. In the meantime, what other dress pants do you all like? 

Came back from the national conference last night and deliriously taught class today, which devolved into me telling my students to photoshop the head of a famous theorist on to the body of a prairie dog and long story short I had a good draft of that image in my inbox five minutes after class.
Anyway here is what I wore to a conference mixer. I think people usually stay in business clothes for these but I swapped my pumps out for boots so that I would be ready to go out after.

Conference packing: What’s in my bag

Conference packing: what’s in my day bag edition.

I usually spend 80% of conference time dealing with feeling bad. The mix of no sleep and lots of germs is never a good one. Here’s what I keep on me at all times: Advil, tums, bandaids, moleskin, foldable flats for when my shoes kill me, water, snacks, writing utensils and notebook, laptop, business cards, hand sanitizer, and oil blotting face sheets.

What to wear to academic conferences

What to wear to an academic conference, pt. 2. I like to bring one work dress and wear it on its own and then layer it with a blazer a couple days later.

Dress- J. Crew, old (similar cut, great winter version for freezing hotels, more affordable)

Wedges- Nordstrom Rack, old (similar)

Purse- thrifted (similar)

Cropped Blazer- old (similar)