I need a new look after giving up corporate life to be a foster carer

(10 Posts)
flamingnoravera Tue 31-May-16 10:58:32

I leave my job as a senior education manager this week. I have lived in a uniform of trouser suits and fitted shirts for the past 25 years. I am about to start a new life as a foster carer and I need a new look.

I want a look that is feminine, but not floaty dresses (probably not dresses much at all), easy to wear and looks fab. I am a size 10 and 5'4" with shortish legs. I live in cowboy boots as I cannot wear shoes with straps because of my high instep.

Any ideas of somewhere I can go for a £500-£1k wardrobe revamp? I have not set foot in M&S in 15 years it is to frumpy and the styling is all wrong. Currenly I am wearing Gap tan chinos, a pale blue linen shirt and a Joules summer tweed jacket (I am in the office packing up- this is "smart casual" but feels like neither home nor office wear really). I like to dress up but not in heels- I am more of a smart trousers and crisp white shirt with a wild jacket of some sort (eg vintage edwardian velvet bustle coat).

I have a good budget to spend on a new working wardrobe that will be cool enough to stop me looking like a granny with a grandchild, smart enough to command respect at social worker and school meetings and stylish enough to know I can still carry off funky outfits. HELP!

freshmint Tue 31-May-16 11:04:44

I think jigsaw may be your answer, judging by your description of yourself. Jigsaw, Zara, bit of Cos if you like that style (you may not), gap for basics.

freshmint Tue 31-May-16 11:05:40

Ps continue failing to put a foot in M&S. There is nothing for you there... Or at least nothing you have the time to root out from the piles of tat.

flamingnoravera Tue 31-May-16 11:20:30

Thanks Fresh
I like COS but there is no store near me and I like to try before I buy. I was in Zara yesterday and whilst a few items looked ok, mostly it had that cheap and cheerful look but I reckon I can find a few bits and bobs which leaves me with Jigsaw- I had forgotten Jigsaw- so that is really helpful, I will take myself off there at lunchtime today- and there is an anthropologie across the road from Jigsaw here so I can browse their (overpriced) rails too.

WalkingZed Tue 31-May-16 11:48:49

Do you have some really good quality jeans?

I've just bought these and they are definitely worth the money

Come in a wide range of colours.

They feel smart and casual depending on the look you want!

burnishedsilver Tue 31-May-16 12:52:51

Massimo Dutti?

JapaneseSlipper Tue 31-May-16 13:08:15

I'd also consider comfort, if the children you will be fostering are quite young. I used to trot about happily in skinny jeans and ballet pumps, thinking they were comfortable enough for anything.

Once babies happened, I spend a lot more time crouching, bending, sitting and lying on the floor. The jeans went out and the leggings came in! I always wear them in black, and consider them a bit of a uniform - never wear prints with them, keep it simple with grey, black or blue tops/jumpers. I dress more smartly for days out or on weekends, but for everyday it's easier to be able to reach for basics and not have to think about it too much.

flamingnoravera Tue 31-May-16 16:13:40

I am going to foster 7-11 year olds so not babies. I will need to be able to do parks, slides, climbing frames, bikes etc.

I popped into Antropologie at lunchtime and came out £00's lighter. I bought two pairs of cargo pants, one in tan and the other in dark blue. Both really relaxed fit and look good with boots. Then I bought two tops, one patterned vest top and a large white t shirt. All impulse bought so I will probably hate them by tomorrow smile

flamingnoravera Tue 31-May-16 16:17:34

Thanks also for the jeans and Massimo Dutti suggestions- the black trouser white shirt woman is me (apart from the height and the hair and the location- apart from those) to a tee.

But I have already spent a third of my budget in one hour on impulse buys. Oh dear. I am sure a foster child will not give a darn what I am wearing!

MeadowHay Wed 01-Jun-16 10:40:51

How about looking in Mango?

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