1) Matching skirt and blazer with contrasting blouse - this is your most traditional formula. It is the most similar to a man's power suit where your blouse becomes synonymous with his tie.
2) Matching skirt and blouse with contrasting blazer
3) Matching blouse and blazer with contrasting skirt
4) Matching blouse and statement shoes with any combination of skirt and blazer
I use one of first three formulas when I'm pressed for time or when I have important meetings, because they are easy to put together and always look smart.
When I'm I feeling creative or want to have a little more fun, like today, I'll use #4!
Today I wore this black and white striped skirt with a pink blouse and matching statement strappy sandals.
My skirt is from White House Black Market, the blouse is from Stitch Fix, the Shoes are Kelly and Katie from DSW. My necklace is white topaz that I got in Sri Lanka (you can read about that trip in my Travel Blog).
Here's a close up of the blazer. It is by Elie Tahari, and has these wonderful ribbon details to really make it much more than your ordinary black blazer.
And these shoes are so fun! They are by Kelly & Katie which is a private label brand created by DSW. They have enough elastic in the strap that I can get them on without having to unbuckle them which is convenient. They are very comfortable except for a small spot on the top strap that rubbed against the top of my foot. I actually just put a piece of tape under the strap and the problem was solved.