We are near the end of tackling my 10 casual outfit formulas for Mums and gals on the go (refresh your memories with formulas #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6 , #7 and #8). Today we bring back super stylish, Chicago forum member Laura, who is a freelance writer and busy Mum on the go. Frock gal Laura was intrigued by knit pants as an alternative to jeans and this is how she put together her look.

When Ponte knit pants began appearing in the stores this fall, so many YLF forum members were raving about their comfort and style that I decided to try a pair. I bought mine in the INC. department of Bloomingdale’s, and was instantly converted. They are warm (a big plus in Chicago winters), don’t constrict, and miraculously don’t stretch or bag out. Truly a great option for Moms on the go, travel, huge holiday meals, or any time you want to appear pulled together while staying comfy. Here is Angie’s formula #9:

Skinny stretch knit pants + button down tunic shirt + casual belt + tall boots


Because of my body type (hourglass tending toward pear), I find it most flattering to wear my knit pants with a good amount of coverage, with a top that hits at mid-thigh. And, because the pants are knit, I prefer to wear a woven top. The one exception to my woven preference is my grey, a-line turtleneck sweater tunic, which I accessorize with loads of long chains. I love that look with the pants, and it’s the ultimate in coziness on a cold winter day.

These pants have become my winter replacement for the leggings I wore to death in spring and fall. Angie encouraged me to be creative with the formula, so I paired the pants with dresses, tunics, cascading cardigans, and added a coat at times for extra coverage. Angie’s formula calls for a belted tunic shirt, and although I do wear a tunic shirt with Ponte knit pants,  my shirt doesn’t work with a belt, so you won’t see one pictured here. Unlike formula #3 (casual dresstights or hose + tall boots), which I road tested and found very straightforward, you may need to do some experimentation. And remember, you can always post your outfits on the forum for feedback.

When looking for a woven tunic or dress, try patterns and color. Plaid is big this season, in reds and blues and taupes and grays, and I found myself drawn to berry reds and grey. But, I have also paired the pants with a ruffled chiffon dress, and by adding a casual sweater coat, found the pants took the dress from formal to casual, giving me more opportunities to wear it.

Tall black boots play a big role in making this look work. I love the long, lean line they create. Riding boots or my waterproof patent leather La Canadiennes are my favorites. Try booties as well, especially if you’re in a warmer climate. The red booties are a fun alternative that provide a pop of color.

Handbags? Well, although my kids are out of diapers, I still find that a roomy bag suits my MOTG needs best. I usually go for a casual, hobo-style bag. My go-to handbag of the moment is from Ecco, and has a pretty bluish silver metallic finish. It goes with everything in my color palette!

Ladies, over to you. Are you wearing formula #9? Have you changed it up to suit your preferences? Let’s hear from you!