Work It: Getting Dressed for the Office
We think about workwear a lot. And we mean A LOT. Why? It’s the only dress code we wear five out of seven days a week. It’s the big chunk of our wardrobe that’s “dry clean only.” And even though it consumes more than half of our closet space, it’s usually the #1 reason we don’t think we have anything to wear in the morning.
Let’s face it. When we’re online shopping and stumble upon a plain white button-up, we don’t think, “Oooh! I wanna get up in that business casual,” amiright? But even if we’re filling our closets with the same 9-to-5 pieces we’ve been wearing for years—the work pants, the black blazer, the collared shirt—doesn’t mean we have to WEAR them them the same way.
No matter your office dress code, we have a way to make workwear work for you – pun intended. Whether you’re trying to land the job or going from boardroom to wine bar, these nine easy styling tips will help you win at workwear every time.
1. When in doubt, stick to black, white, gray, and navy styles from brands like Ann Taylor LOFT and Banana Republic. Accessorize with pops of colors and playful patterns to infuse new life into old favorites.
2. Phase out your pencil skirts for the shirt dress, which can be worn on its own in warm weather or over a skinny pant during cooler months.
4. Don’t be afraid of the cropped work pant, a.k.a. culottes. When worn with a heeled boot, clog, or pump, this new silhouette can take your workwear to a whole new level. Simply Vera Vera Wang, Express, and The Limited have styles like these.
6. Yes, denim DOES have a place in your workspace. Opt for darker washes and classic styles by J.Crew that pair nicely with button-ups, blazers, and heels.
7. Layering 101: Add thicker structured pieces over — not under — thinner, softer fabric to avoid awkward bunching.
8. A little styling goes a long way. Consider the popped collar if you mean business, or layer multiple collars on top of one another for smart style.
9. Add an accessory or two, but don’t overdo it. Sleek and sophisticated accents are all you need for that finishing touch.
What is your favorite thing to wear to work?