Office Style Inspiration

Where do you work?

I work in the marketing department at a college.

What did you wear to work today?

I am wearing a black cotton t-shirt dress, a khaki jacket and wedges with gold chain detailing. No jewelry.

workstyle polyvoreHow would you describe your office style?

I would describe my office style as feminine and minimal. I love a simple, body-hugging t-shirt dress for everyday style, both in and out of the office, and I can’t stand to wear anything that is baggy or has frills and embellishments. This I attribute to my body shape; anything loose fitting looks like a smock on me. Out of the office, my style is the same but with a hint of teenage angst. I also love a great wedge heel for the office.

The fashion rule I always enforce is never look like I’m trying too hard: pick one standout piece and keep everything else to a minimal.

Go-to fashion rule or styling trick?

My mom taught me that you can wear red lipstick or heavy eye makeup, but never both simultaneously. The fashion rule I always enforce is never look like I’m trying too hard: pick one standout piece and keep everything else to a minimal. Outside of work, I love to wear a body-hugging t-shirt dress with Converse sneakers. It helps to tone-down the overall look; the Converse sneakers are essential because they help to balance the overall look. If I wear a form-fitting dress, it must be accompanied by flats or Converse sneakers; I will never pair a form-fitting dress with high heels. I’m not saying it’s wrong to do so, but it’s not my personal style.

Favorite part about your job?

I love anytime I get to write feature stories about our students. It’s always a learning experience for myself. Each of our students has their own story that defines how they ended up at our college. Working at a tech college brings a unique mix of students, and it’s always interesting to hear the situation that brought the student to our college. With graduation coming up, I’m working on a “Humans of New York” style Facebook campaign for our upcoming graduates. It will be interesting to hear their different stories.colorfulofficeinspo

Most challenging part of your job?

Working in marketing at a college, I have to be able to speak with an authority in 50+ different industries, everything from machine tools to architecture to nursing. Since I can’t possibly do that on my own, my job requires getting a lot of feedback from many different people, and trust me, everyone thinks they are a marketer. I do value their opinion because they know their student, but sometimes there is “too many cooks in the kitchen,” so to speak.

One thing in your closet you could not live without?

Fitted t-shirt dresses are life! I can throw one on and feel comfortable while looking put-together. Win-win! I also LOVE my scoop-back, ballet style fitted shirts. I wish I could find more of them.


If you could choose any shoes from our Summer in the City collection, which one would it be?

I think the blush Nora d’orsay pumps are gorgeous. Low-key with simple lines is my jam.

For the Love of Shoes

Founders of Shoesinitaly discuss how Italian shoes strengthened their relationship.

Max and Francesca are the co-founders of, the new shoe retailer that brings authentic, Italian shoes to the United States. The two have a special bond that goes beyond their role as business partners, though. They are also married.

The couple didn’t set out to one day own their own business. It started out small.

“Francesca came back to the U.S. from Italy with some Italian shoes,” explained Max. “Her friends liked the shoes so much they asked her how they can buy. The business started really local, just among friends, then friends of friends.”

Francesca then asked Max, who is a software engineer, if he could build a website for her to show the shoes online, so he did. The next step was to add a shopping cart and open it to the public.

The two had never prepared for the idea that they would one day own an online retailer. While some might consider the idea of working with their partner as a risk to their relationship, it really opened the doors to Max and Francesca’s relationship.

Now, our relationship is somehow even more complete. -Francesca

“We got to know some aspects of each other’s personalities that we did not know before,” said Francesca. “You stay with a person for 20 years and you think you know everything. This is far from the truth. Now, our relationship is somehow even more complete.”

Q&A with Max & Francesca

Q: How long have you been together?
M&F: Since 1996

Q: How long did you date before you got married?
M&F: We dated for eight years before we decided we wanted to have a ring on our finger. It did not change anything on practical things. We already were used to living together and sharing bills, but sentimentally it changed a lot. It was a great decision.

Q: How did you meet?
Max: A friend of mine used to commute on the same train with Francesca. He convinced her to join our company of friends.

Q: Where were you living when you met?
M&F: In a small town in Northern Italy, close to the lake and the mountains.

She just smiled at me and said, “Are you alright?”

Q: Describe your wedding day.
Max: I was sweating like crazy. We had a traditional Italian wedding with a lot of friends and relatives. I was waiting for her to arrive in front of the church. When she got there, my legs almost gave out on me. She just smiled at me and said, “Are you alright?”

Francesca: I was so happy; I could not stop smiling. I spent the morning at home getting ready with my parents and brother.

Q: What brought you to the United States?
M&F: We traveled around the world for a while, across Europe, Australia and then the USA. Max’s job brought us here.

Q: What are the struggles of being business partners and husband and wife?
Max: Francesca is very organized, and she knows what she wants. She is extremely picky and determined, could be stubborn from time to time, but working with her is relatively easy. We try our best to avoid talking about business during family time. It was not very easy, especially at the beginning. All of our conversations were about our new business. We eventually got better at managing the situation.

Francesca: Max is very demanding. He works hard, and he wants everything done by yesterday. That’s the difficult part. The fun part is that he is stimulating and gets the best out of you. I agree that the biggest challenge was to keep family and business stimulating.

Q: How did you find the balance between work life and personal life?
M&F: Well, at a certain point something fantabulous happened. Our first child was born, so whatever you’ve been working on to balance your life, it just changed forever.

Q: Max, if you could choose anything in the world for a date night with your wife, what would you choose to do?
Max: That’s a good question; I would like to take her to the moon. I mean the real one. I’ve been fond of space missions since forever, but she would not appreciate that too much. I bet she prefers to go to the aquarium with our kid and be happy together.

Q: Lastly, what are your plans for this year’s Valentines’ Day?
Max: I will be at the office, leaving my house at 6 a.m. and coming back (I hope) by 6 p.m. I will have to do some wrestling with my kid on the area rug as soon as I get through the door. Our best plan is to put the kid to sleep peacefully, and then watch a movie on the sofa. I just got a new projector! She is allowed to pic the movie she wants. That’s my Valentines’ gift. Just kidding, I will buy her something, but I won’t tell you since she is here sitting beside me, and I do not want to spoil the surprise. Maybe a good pair of Italian shoes?