Cary, N.C. — Now that I have been in the "real world" for almost a year, I have realized how important it is to buy outfits that you not only like, but can be worn for many occasions. I no longer buy "work clothes" and "going out clothes," or "summer clothes" and "winter clothes." I buy pieces that can be mixed and matched for any occasion.
If you are on a budget, it can be devastating checking out some of the boutiques in the Triangle, so I have made it a point to find ones that are affordable with high-quality clothing. This has been a rough battle that has resulted in many failures like spending too much on a dress that I only wear once or finding a great bargain on a shirt only to have it fall apart after one trip though the washing machine.
To help you find affordable outfits that can be used for more than one occasion, Out and About will be featuring some items from our favorite boutiques in the Triangle.
Just in time for Valentine's day, our boutique for the month of love is Apricot Lane. Apricot Lane has two locations in Raleigh, one at North Hills and one at Cary Town Center. The clothes highlighted in this article are from the Cary Town Center location.
Though some days it feels like we are in the middle of winter, spring is just around the corner, so lately when I have been shopping I have tried to find pieces that can transition between seasons. A great way to do this is to go ahead and get clothes in bright spring colors that you can also pair with a blazer or scarf.
This peach dress from Yu ($48) has a cut-out back so without the blazer it is perfect for a night out, but with a blazer you can turn up the style at work. Throw it on with a fun scarf to add an extra pop of color or wear it with leggings when the weather is still chilly. For spring, pair it with nude wedges or heels. The black blazer is made by Under Skies and at just $44 - this is a staple piece in my wardrobe. I love that Apricot Lane has so many styles and colored blazers for about $50.
We also found a cute purple dress by Tea N' Rose for $44. I adore how comfortable and fun the fit is. The dress has an eye-lit style which is very "in" for spring but this color is not too bright to enjoy right now. The neckline is very high, making it perfect for work. It also goes great with a blazer. This dress has a great back with gold buttons making it perfect to wear out as well.
I always need an outfit for casual Fridays which is why I love this Ellison Ellison Ellison sweater. Sweaters can usually end up costing $80 to $100, but this one was only $48. The short style will also make it fun to wear with shorts when the weather warms up. Tie it altogether with a belt to give it a more form-fitting look. The black jeans ($42) are from Flying Monkey.
Blazers are such a big part of my wardrobe and I love that they are now coming in so many fun colors and styles. This Fate blazer ($68) is perfect for work or for hanging out on a Saturday. Under the blazer is a great green top ($39) by Ya.
This yellow blazer and skirt pairing is a great transition outfit for spring. The Very J skirt is denim with leather trim and costs $48. I couldn't leave the store without it. The blazer is by Jealous Tomato and goes fo $42.
Eye-lit is in this season and you can see it everywhere at Apricot Lane. We found a blue denim shirt for $46 and it is perfect for any UNC fan!
We went shopping before Valentine's Day, so we also searched for the perfect date-night attire. Whether you have a romantic evening ahead of you or going out with the girls, both these dresses will make you stand out.
The black wedge heels featured in some of the photos are from Qupid and cost $19 - for suede heels this is a great deal.
Where do you love to shop? Any suggestions on where we should check out next?