I think this may have been one of my all-time favorite outfits, combined from some of my all-time favorite thrift store finds. This shrunken buffalo plaid jacket, for example, was scrounged for 25¢. When I found it, I was working for a Catholic Charities agency and spending one day a week at a community store and thrift shop. Each day was spent with the crew of volunteers - all elderly - as they sorted through immense piles of donations, maintained order among the racks, and took numerous breaks for coffee, coffee cake, and lunch. Often, one of the volunteers would set aside a sweater or jacket she thought would suit me, and, whether or not I agreed, I was excited and touched to see their suggestions.
I love this outfit not just for the individual items, but for the way they balance one another out. The curve-hugging skirt softens the boxy jacket; the bold check adds some needed edge to the professional, businesslike skirt.
Finally, I was happy to be able to add one of my favorite tights tips to the outfit. I have a lot of colorful jewel tone tights, but I often feel shy about wearing them to work - they're just so bold! Today I layered a pair of dark red tights under lightweight, sheer black tights. While they look solid black from a distance, you can just get a hint of the red underneath.