Founder and CEO of M.M.LaFleur, Sarah once described herself as “your typical woman in finance” who had a closet full of (in her own words) “blah pantsuits.” She developed the concept for the effortless, functional and chic collection for M.M.LaFleur with her co-founders “to take the work out of dressing for work.” We are inspired by Sarah’s vision for practical, inspired clothing with purpose for the professional woman and welcome the chance to ask her a few style questions of our own:
Sarah, thank you for taking the time to sit with us. A lot of us find ourselves in the same predicament – lots of clothes, nothing to wear, no time to shop.
Q: Can you recommend five must-haves that get women back to basics for work and for the weekend?
- Perfect Dress: For me, dresses are the ultimate wardrobe staple. I think of them as the “adult onesie”—just throw it on and you’re done. The perfect day-to-night dress feels polished in the office and fun for after-work drinks. Bonus: most of M.M.LaFleur’s dresses are machine washable – no dry cleaning necessary if you spill!
- (Not) Basic T-Shirt: Find a work-appropriate T-shirt that looks polished under a blazer, but can also stand on its own with a pair of jeans (I’m partial to our Didion top).
- Flattering Black Pants: There’s nothing quite as crucial as a good pair of pants. You need a pair that’s formal enough for meetings, but comfy enough to sit in for several hours on a cramped Amtrak.
- Classic Blazer: Throwing on a blazer over almost any outfit instantly makes you look and feel more put together. One of my favorites is our Woolf jardigan — stretchy and crafted from a breathable knit, it’s wrinkle resistant and effortless, never stiff or overdressed!
- White Button Down: A staple for a reason, a crisp white collared shirt is of the most versatile players in any professional wardrobe. The neutral color will work with everything from pencil skirts to jeans.
Q: How should brands make it easier for women to shop and choose flattering clothing? And how can fashion fit into a busy lifestyle (mom life, travel, work)?
A: Many of our customers hate to shop! We are about making it easy for her to figure out what to wear through our personal styling services, whether she’s shopping online or in our stores. We are also about providing clothes that are really thoughtfully designed. We create high-quality pieces meant to take her through her busy life, whatever the day has in store. Much of our clothing is machine washable, with thoughtful details like deep pockets, adjustable hemlines, hidden hooks for bra straps and wrinkle-free material.
Q: Can you tell us more about how keeping style simple and polished helps women “harness the power of self-presentation”?
A: Working women have so many decisions to make and challenges to face on any given day—figuring out what to wear shouldn’t be one of them! I always advise women to streamline their closets by stocking them with beautiful options they know will make them feel confident. Identify the colors and silhouettes that work for you, and make those your foundation. You can still look elegant and feminine, but once you’ve got your base, you won’t have to overthink it.
With thanks to Sarah,
Bio: Michelle is a former beauty executive who loves being part of the Care Skincare Team. She’s married with two young children who have more energy than all the drinks on a Starbucks menu.