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Paralegal Career Dressing: A Flea Market Blouse among Bar Leaders

Paralegal Career Dressing: A Flea Market Blouse among Bar Leaders

I could have titled this post, “Three Paralegals among Lawyers and Bar Leaders,” but this is the first time I’ve bought a shirt for work at the flea market, so I had to go with that.

There’s a lot of cool places I can imagine myself in my life, including chumming ’round with Benedict Cumberbatch at the BAFTA Television Awards, but I never, ever imagined myself attending a very cool event like The 2012 Bar Leaders Orientation at the North Carolina Bar Association in Cary, NC on Friday, June 6.

I think of the NCBA Auditorium as the Star Trek Enterprise.

I know, some of y’all that know me are surprised they let me in, right? ๐Ÿ˜›

Seriously, it was an incredible honor to attend the extremely helpful daylong session for incoming section, division and committee chairs, vice chairs, and nominees to the NCBA Board of Governors for 2012-2013. Most of the attendees were of course lawyers, but Karen Mendorf, the incoming Chair of the Paralegal Division; Stephanie Crosby, the incoming Co-Chair of the 4ALL Committee (and the first paralegal to co-chair a committee for NCBA); and me, the incoming Vice-Chair of the Paralegal Division, were there representing our paralegal members.

Stephanie Crosby, Karen Mendorf, and me

I know, some of y’all that know me are surprised I accepted a nomination for an officer position, right?

The three paralegals. (I wasn’t too keen on the name tag from a style perspective :P)

I’ve served on many paralegal division executive committees over the years, mostly in publications, for the North Carolina Advocates for Justice, Legal Assistants Division. Three years ago, I was appointed to the North Carolina Bar Association Paralegal Division Council. During that time, I served as Publications and Technology Chairs, devoting most of my volunteer activities to keeping the Division newsletter appearing regularly, and plugging social media groups on LinkedIn and Facebook for our members.

I love it when I have a photographer like Dear Hubby, but he never tells me key stuff like, “You’re coming untied.” Blouse (via flea market, via Bombay, India); Loft skirt (clearance last year); Ann Taylor cami (at least 15 years old but this woman can launder some delicates); Breva ice blue pumps (John Fluevog); Cuff (Jada’s Jewels)

I assumed when my three-year term on the Paralegal Division Council was up, I’d gracefully hand over my Editorial Calendar to another bossy, rather OCD paralegal, and fade into the sunset, to pursue my other hobbies, you know, that monthly paralegal podcast, this professional blog, and working on the second edition of Workers’ Compensation Practice for Paralegals (Carolina Academic Press, 2008). I’ve also delivered social media, litigation, and ethics sessions at five CLEs so far this year. For a shy introvert, I talk. A lot.

Most comfortable tunic/blouse/thingie evah.

I sure was surprised to discover I didn’t want to leave the Paralegal Division Council, which is comprised of some of the most talented and generous paralegals I’ve had the good fortune to work with. I’d never thought about progressing to a Division Officer position, but realized I wasn’t ready to leave the Council, especially during such exciting times for the Division (more about that in another post). I volunteered for the upcoming Secretary vacancy, after that one time I took the meeting minutes using my iPad and full-sized Apple wireless keyboard. I figured I was a shoo-in for Secretary, since I faithfully wrote down every single thing anyone said. Well, mebbe not.

I would have bought six, but there was only just the one.

Discussion of me filling the Vice-Chair position started instead. I’m going to tell the truth. With so many amazing Council members and committee chairs in the Paralegal Division, I suggested that I might not be the most qualified (although definitely the one that tweets the most). But I am humbled that the Nominations Committee members think I will be a good officer for the Division, especially with its growing membership and exciting new future projects.

And that’s how I found myself at the 2012 NCBA Bar Leaders Orientation, excited to meet everyone, and eager to both learn and earn leadership skills with a large group of volunteers committed to the North Carolina Bar Association and its work on behalf of its members and the community.

And wearing a handmade blouse from the flea market ๐Ÿ™‚ And participating in Not Yet Dead Style’s Visible Monday again, because I wouldn’t miss it for the world.

Worn anything from the flea market to work lately?

17 Responses to Paralegal Career Dressing: A Flea Market Blouse among Bar Leaders

  1. Awww congratulations on your nomination!! That's such an accomplishment!

    The flea market blouse totally fits right in. =)

  2. What an empowering piece. I can feel your confidence and your commitment to advancing the legal profession. Congrats on your nomination! You are truly role model material, especially for young women. And you blaze trails with your style. Thrifted? Right on! And the robin's egg blue shoes, lovely accent.

  3. Wow! Congrats, it's sounds like you're really going places, Lynne. Very exciting. For a shy introvert, I also talk. A lot. I just make sure to take some time to be quietly alone whenever I can to decompress from the people exposure.

    The tunic blouse is lovely. I wish our local flea market was open more than once every two months. I always manage to miss it.

  4. Well, you're coming up in the world! I like your flea market top…and makes me wonder if anyone else in the room was wearing flea market gear.

  5. @Tiffany ~ Thanks! I love the energy that people who love their work generate when they're together in a large room ๐Ÿ™‚

    @Beth ~ We hadn't been to our local flea market in years. But man, we had a ridiculously fantastic time ๐Ÿ™‚

    @Pam ~ Aw, thanks. I think this blouse is unworn – it's supposed to be hand sewn from Bombay.

    @Melanie ~ I always think of myself as slightly too spastastic to be a good role model, and therefore am always shocked when someone nominates me for anything ๐Ÿ˜› This is actually a flea market find, from an Indian vendor who had just set up his stall. I think it's supposed to be new. Eh, like I care, right? ๐Ÿ˜€

    @Sheila ~ I love the sheerness, too. It's oddly just the right blend of polyester silkiness, ridiculously good-feeling.

    @Gracey ~ Thank you! But I'm pretty sure this blouse styled itself ๐Ÿ˜›

    @Megan ~ Alone time is so important. Peeps have no idea how delightfully solitary I enjoy being – and how terrified I am of public speaking…still ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

    @Terri ~ If anyone else at the NCBA Bar Leaders meeting was wearing clothes from the local flea market, this here's the place to speak up…lol.

  6. Congrats on your achievements Lynne! You inspire me!

    Who would have known you thrifted that fabulous pussy bow tunic, great find, it looks lovely with your skirt. Very smart chic and professional! I love those curls by the way! And thank you for all your generous comments!


  7. Congrats Lynne!
    Love the fleamarket blouse – most of our fleamarkets are stocked with 'japcrap' as Graeme calls it. But I'd so wear a blouse like this, handmade or not.
    Love the splash of colour with your shoes.

  8. Congratulations, Lynne – this is so exciting as you gain more recognition for your profession, and for your own career! Your flea market blouse is lovely, and your blue shoes are *awesome*.

Contact Info:

Lynne J. DeVenny, N.C. State Bar Certified Paralegal

Owner & Virtual Paralegal, DeVenny Paralegal Services

Email: lynne.devenny[at]

Telephone: 336-582-0003

Inquiries are welcome, with free quotes available.

Meet Lynne:

Lynne DeVenny is a North Carolina State Bar Certified Paralegal with over 27 years of experience working on complex litigation cases, including medical malpractice, personal injury, workersโ€™ compensation, and Social Security disability.

Disclosure: I am not a lawyer and cannot provide legal representation or legal advice.

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