1 Pair of Pants, 2 Ways

I recently had the occasion (twice) to dress a little more formal than usual. I chose to wear a pair of black Worthington slacks from JCPenny. At first glance they appear solid black, but they actually have tiny white dots on them, a detail I love! I originally bought them with a black blazer, but the days I needed to wear them were SO hot, I opted to skip the extra layer.

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For the first look I mirrored the dots on the pants with a polka dot blouse from NY&Co. I felt put together despite the heat that day.

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For the second look, on a day with torrential rain, I chose a summer scarf and Liz Claiborne cap sleeve blouse.

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Do you choose neutrals with a subtle pattern/detail to break away from boring? Which look do you like better?