I was fortunate enough to enjoy a Summer Friday off from work last Friday so after a three day weekend, I’m currently dragging myself out of bed and back to work. And since it’s Monday, today I’m sharing how to make any outfit work friendly. Which was actually inspired by this slip dress and cardigan combo!
When I was in college, I made a YouTube video called “How To Dress For A Job Interview As A Teen.” While that video has more than 20,000 views, I also got so much hate on it! My biggest stance in that video was that you don’t need to wear a traditional suit and look so stuffy. While I wasn’t as experienced as I am today, I really stood by my point of view. Even when so many people commented that I was wrong and stupid and that they could never wear that to their job. Sure, there were a few things I got wrong in that video, I even made it private because I was tired of the negative feedback years later. But, as someone who has had several jobs and has been faking it as an actual adult for three years now, I’ve learned a thing or two about dressing for the office.
I’ve talked about this before, but one of the great things about working in fashion is that there really are no rules. Sure, I’m not going to show up to work in a sparkly, revealing, club dress. Not that I own one if we’re being honest. But, there are no strict dress codes. With that being said, I still want to look presentable and actually acknowledge that I am in fact at work. I also recognize that you guys, as my readers may not have a lenient dress code like I do. So today I wanted to share a few essentials and rules I live by to help make almost any outfit work appropriate. Because I really do believe that it’s not about buying an entire “work wardrobe,” but instead picking up a few pieces that you can incorporate into your style to make it more work appropriate.
A Long Cardigan
Probably the star of todays outfit post, but a long cardigan goes a long way. I used to be such a cardigan junkie and had one in every single color. These days, I prefer a longer and looser fit, but it’s definitely about personal preference. I always joke at work that the number one reason why I keep coming back is for the free central air conditioning! But, really though, the air condition is so strong in the office during the summer! So having a cozy piece to throw on while at work and being able to take it off when you head back out into the summer heat is great. One of the reasons why I think a long cardigan is the perfect essential is because if your dress or skirt is a little too short, the longer length of the cardigan gives the illusion that it’s actually work appropriate. I’ve found a ton of great options at Abercrombie & Fitch, here, here, here and here.
The Not So Classic Blazer
I have such strong opinions about blazers that you would think I invented the damn style. The blazer is the number one classic work staple. But, that doesn’t mean you need to pick a stiff and boring one and feel like you work on Wall St. If you’re looking for one that fits your personal style, Asos has the best options. My personal preference when it comes to blazers is similar to that of cardigans, since I like a bit of a longer and relaxed fit. For the summer specifically, I love a white linen one. I even have a velvet one for the winter that I think is so fun. Nowadays, your blazer doesn’t have to be basic black or grey, you can get one in pretty much every color and it can have bell sleeves, be cropped or have a tie waist. Again, I think this is great for throwing over a dress or skirt, but especially for adding it to a jeans and tee look to dress up a look even more. I personally love this one here, here, here and here.
The Sleeveless Blazer || Vests
So far, we’ve talked about items that you can wear at work, but take off at the end of the day. What I love about vests, is that you can really incorporate it into your look. Since it’s sleeveless, it’s just a light layer that can be part of your look rather than an added layer in the office. Vests are probably my number one weakness when it comes to office wear. I have a pink one I always reach for and several white pairs. Again this is great for throwing over a dress or wearing with jeans/pants. I even think if you have a stricter dress code, vests are a nice replacement for blazers since it’s more of a summer option. I personally find that finding the right one takes a bit of searching so if you’re a vest fan like me, I would recommend just always keeping your eyes open for a good options. And when searching online, I suggest not only typing in “vest”, but trying “sleeveless blazer.”
All About The Right Shoes || Mules
I think a pair of heels can dress up any outfit. Especially if you’re wearing jeans to the office, you look 10x chicer with a great pair of heels. With that being said, I’m constantly running around all day so it’s just not practical for me to be in a pair of heels, slowing me down. So the next best thing is definitely a pair of mules. I just got into this trend a few months ago and I’m obsessed. I think it’s a great way to look professional and put together, but it’s a nice twist on the classic ballet flat. And there are so many options out that, especially affordable ones so you can find anything to go with whatever outfit you’re wearing. Currently loving this one here, here, here and here.
I’m obsessed with makeup. I’m about $50 away from becoming VIP Rogue at Sephora and I just subscribed to their monthly subscription box. I think a red lip just makes life so much better. But, I do think there are a few things to look out for when doing your makeup for work. I truly think that style is all about a balance. Like, if you’re wearing a revealing top, you should be more covered up on the bottom. So if you’re wearing a statement outfit, maybe a light smoky eye and bold lip aren’t the best option. I see so many gals in the morning with thick eyeliner and a lot of blush. While I’m all about self expression with makeup, I think just being more mindful to the bigger picture is key. If you want to do an eyeshadow look one day, maybe opt out of bright lipstick and a loud outfit. And if your outfit is super simple one day, add a bold lip. It’s all about a balance!