The Perfect Work Bag

The Best Bag for Work/Life | Frock Files

One of my favorite things about working in a space with other creative people is having the opportunity to flex my fashion muscle on a regular basis. Soon after getting hired, I realized that I just didn’t have a bag that would fit all of the things I needed for work and look appropriate for general running around. My friend PJ introduced me to a line called MZ Wallace, and after watching a video in which a woman packed so many things into one of their bags that I began thinking of her as Mary (as in Poppins), I knew I had to have one.

More to Love

I bought the Belle and fell in love with it instantly. It’s the perfect commuter bag, with so many pockets that I could easily carry everything I needed — laptop, notebook, thermos, lip balm, tissues, phone, charger, a ridiculous number of pens, my lunch, and headphones — and still have plenty of room for more. Since I tend to be that girl who dumps out the contents of her bag to find her keys, I appreciate the front pockets the most, which make it easy for me to put my keys in the same place every time. How many minutes of my life did I just get back by not having to do that any more?

The Best Bag for Work/Life | Frock Files

And you know nothing tickles my fancy more than beautiful things that are made with function in mind. Aside from the space and the aesthetics of the bags, I love love love the signature nylon that the company uses. While the trim, handles, and accessories are made with high-quality leather, the nylon is used for most of the structure of the bags, and that makes them super lightweight and durable. On top of that, the fabric has proven to be stain resistant, so even though I’ve used mine through the winter and I’m hard on my stuff, it still looks as new as the day it arrived. Oh, and the zippers? Like buttah.

Spring/Summer 2014

When MZ Wallace sent me the Tri Color Bedford Fiona bag from their Spring/Summer 2014 collection, I fell in love all over again. This is seriously the most ladylike bag I’ve ever owned. The proportions are just lovely — the straps are a good length, the bit of chain is just chunky enough without being burdensome, and the flat bottom leaves plenty of room for everything I need to carry. I don’t think I’ve ever received so many compliments on a bag before! It goes everywhere with me these days. I just love not having to transfer bags every time I get home from work. This bag will be available soon, so keep your eyes peeled for it.

The Best Bag for Work/Life | Frock Files

What are your work bag necessities? And for you mamas out there, what essentials do you keep handy? I know PJ, who just had her second little boy (congrats, friend!), has used an MZ Wallace as a diaper bag and just got another for the new baby because it’s so roomy and easy to organize. I love that idea!

P.S. More office fun here!

This post was sponsored by MZ Wallace but all opinions are very much my own. (I’m seriously, seriously a die hard fan.) Thank you for supporting brands that keep Frock Files going.

What’s In My Desk Drawers

Frock Files | What's In My Desk Drawer

It’s been about two months since I started my new job, and I love it more every day! As many of you know — and can empathize with — I spent years trying to find the right fit career-wise. I’ve worked as a new media textbook editor, a book designer, an executive assistant, and I even had a stint as an editor of investigator reports at a detective agency, but none of them seemed to be going anywhere, nor did they fill me with any sense of purpose. I feel so lucky to have found this position doing something I really enjoy, working on a team of people I truly like and respect.

For the month of March, I’ll be featuring one post each week about different aspects of work life, including fashion, supplies, and yes, cubicle decor. I’ve been working on putting these posts together for awhile now, and I’m so excited that I’ll finally get to share them with you!

To kick things off, I wanted to start with what’s inside my desk drawers — office must-haves.

What’s In My Desk Drawer

A pair of pumps | I actually have a few pairs of shoes in my file cabinet, since it’s winter and I clonk around in snow boots until I hit the office. It’s great to have them there as backup during the warm months, too. I’ve broken a heel at work before and had to spend the rest of the day alternating between hobbling around and being barefooted.

Tea + snacks | Work makes me hungry. I generally bring a lunch and try to pack snacks as well, but sometimes I’m in such a hurry in the mornings that I forget. Having a stash of trail mix in my drawer to enjoy alongside a cup of tea takes care of these hunger pangs.

Lip gloss | Because when I do remember to put it on, I feel more put together. I’ve yet to find one better than Bobbi Brown’s.

Cute notepads | My sister got me this adorable Rifle Paper Co. notepad, which I reserve for special notes and big projects.

Mints / Hard candies | It’s always nice to have something to offer people when they come into your workspace. I keep some hard candies handy, which also proved handy when I was under the weather. My grandma used to keep these in her purse and that may be why they seem so ladylike to me.

Hand Lotion | My hands seem to be perpetually dry, so I keep hand lotion with me at all times. My favorite: Aveda’s Hand Relief. It’s thick and creamy, doesn’t leave a residue, and it smells divine.


Do you have a job that you love? I’d love to hear about it. For a period of time before Frock Files, I kept a blog called People Who Love Their Jobs. It was hard to find people to interview! I’m always interested in knowing how people find career paths they can thrive in.

A Little French

French Connection USA | Frock Files

The first thing you’ll ask when you see these pictures is, “Weren’t you cold?” And the answer would be yes. I’d intended to take these pictures in the woods, but once we got there we found all the dead trees and dirty snow too depressing. So we flew over to this cute little square while we still had light, and once we got there we realized I’d forgotten the faux fur stole I’d planned on wearing. So I took a deep breath, and we shot quickly!

French Connection USA | Frock Files

French Connection
sent me this frock to wear to the Green Party at Alt Summit, but since I left a day early to beat the snow storm, the dress and I crossed paths. A total bummer, since the it’s gorgeous and totally fit for a fancy party. Luckily, it’s a classic staple piece that I’ll be able to keep in my wardrobe for years and years, and will be excited to wear every time the opportunity arises.

French Connection USA | Frock Files

With their new US collection, French Connection is all about clean lines and contemporary chicness. Their dresses, in particular, are at the crossroads of classic and modern, which makes them easy to dress up or down. As I work on building up my wardrobe now that I actually work outside my home, I’m turning to French Connection for the effortlessly cool undertones their collection brings.

Now I’m daydreaming about throwing a fancy tea party just so all of us can break out our fanciest frocks! Or maybe, just maybe, Valentine’s weekend will bring about an occasion worthy of this number.

Dress: French Connection // Earrings: J.Crew (similar) // Shoes: Me Too (past season) // Clutch: Macy’s

This post was sponsored by French Connection. All opinions are my own.

Featured on The Chic Site!

The Chic Site: November Fashion

Over the summer, I was thrilled that The Chic Site featured my little “One Dress, Three Ways” video on their site. So when they asked me to contribute a style post about what November fashion looks like in Boston, I said yes right away!

From November through April, my fashion choices revolve around accessories, since most of the time people only ever see the coat part of my outfit. Since moving here seven years ago, my purse collection has expanded healthily (!) and I’ve begun splurging on brightly colored shoes. These bright pink pumps seem to make people around me smile, which is the best part.

The Chic Site wanted a realistic version of what we would be wearing this month, so I got dressed the way I do when I head into the city, with a mix of old and new things. This coat from Gap is the first one I bought here, and it’s still my favorite because it fits nicely — a rarity when you’re petite!

Head on over to The Chic Site to see what seven other lovely ladies from around the globe are donning this month. It’s so fun to see how different the styles are based on location! Oh, to be sleeveless in Monterrey…


Coat: Gap (past season) | Shoes: Kate Spade (similar) | Purse: Kate Spade (past season) | Earrings: Vanilla Moon (custom) | Headband: Nordstrom

Photo by Stephanie Rita Photography

Cozy Fall Fashion for Under $30

Cozy Finds Under $30

Today marks the first part of that decline into really chilly weather here in New England. Temperatures won’t reach above the mid-fifties and may even dip close to freezing at night. It’s time to bundle up, but with two big trips and lots of holiday shopping right around the corner, I’m keeping my eyes peeled for wallet-friendly fashion.

At under $30 each, these pieces hit the mark. The cute “Hello There” sweatshirt? I bet it costs less than your last lunch out.

What are you bundling up in this fall?


Sweatshirt / Gloves / Socks / Boots / Skirt

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