Don’t let “business casual” bind you to sweater sets and dress pants. Ladies, we can do better and here’s how.
A strict business attire dress code at the office means business casual Fridays is a lovely reprieve from more limited selections of predictable everyday suiting. So, whenever I can (barring major meetings or events), I try to inject a little extra style and personality into my Friday work look. How you ask? Here are a few tips for creating an elevated business casual look this Fall.
Certain elements of an outfit are essential for creating a more “workish” or “work-appropriate” look, like a streamlined blazer, conservative blouse, tailored trousers, sophisticated shoes, classic accessories – but who said these pieces can’t be interesting or show a little personality?
Top: Recently, I went on a Forever 21 haul for affordable work appropriate blouses and was shocked by the selection, including a blush toned tie-neck blouse that I knew would be perfect under a suit or paired with a tailored skirt or trousers (and versatile enough to wear with jeans). Tops are a great way to subtly insert a trend into your work attire whether its through an updated silhouette like a tie neck or bow or a popular print or color. But like any trend or item you know won’t last past a season or two, I only shop at places that won’t break the bank, after all it’s not an investment piece.
Bottom: For something a bit unexpected (and perhaps daring), I paired the tie neck top with black faux leather trousers. The key to making an unconventional pant or skirt work for work is to ensure that it is tailored appropriately, meaning steer clear of being the “too tight girl.” No matter the fabric or color, too tight rings the death knell on appropriateness for work – no exceptions.
Jacket: To bring the look together, I wore a houndstood double breasted blazer. A good work ensemble should always include a jacket/blazer that brings it all together and I am loving check, houndstooth or other patterned prints for fall and Mango has some of the best selections at reasonable price points, hands down.
Shoes: To get really trendy, I wore my favorite pair of vinyl heels with capped toe and mid height heels. Shoes can be tricky, there’s really no place for straps and jewels and platforms, but an updated silhouette can really elevate your look – like a cool/interesting heel or in this case a distinct capped toe.
Accessories: I opted for classic, but menswear inspired pieces from MVMT (Use Code: STYLEDBYMY for 15% off), including the rich coffee toned Orion watch and metal framed Lola sunglasses, and a black felt fedora. Ladies, leave the jangles at home – yea, no dangly rhinestones at work please.
Bag: I carried my favorite prada mini satchel, which was a fun/miniature twist on a classic work bag.