With Millennials officially taking over the workforce and the pandemic forcing traditional wear out the window, work attire has undergone a makeover! So, what’s acceptable and what’s not?
If you're someone who works in an office, you'll know how difficult it is to figure out the proper work attire every day. Today, with a more casual approach to workwear, it can get pretty challenging to balance professionalism and style when it comes to clothing for office work.
Whether you've loved or hated working from home, you will soon be headed back to the office due to eased restrictions. The rules of what to wear for office are almost gone and it’s probably that much more confusing. Thankfully, you have us to help with our guide to chic yet appropriate workwear.
What is Office Wear?
Many offices and corporate events require a formal dress code and denote a professional style and dress that is smart and sophisticated. This could mean formal shirts for men, but women can interpret it in many ways: pantsuits and skirt suits, polished separates or business dresses. However, casual and formal attire differ significantly and it’s essential to know which one you’re dressing for and how to do it appropriately. After all, you can’t turn up to client meetings and presentations in your everyday work attire!
What to wear to work?
The recurring question of ‘how to dress up for the office’ is relevant from Monday to Friday, so why not put your creative fashion wheels in motion? On a side note: you need to figure out how to avoid dressing dull for work. From smart suits to sophisticated separates, these outfit ideas are sure to bring some inspiration for your workwear wardrobe:
For a Day At Your Desk
When it comes to clothing for office work, it's important to keep comfort at the forefront since you'll be in your work clothes all day. Hence pants are a good choice, as opposed to skirts and fitted dresses, to help you move around and sit more easily. Ditch the white button-downs and restrictive pencil skirts of the pre-pandemic era and opt for minimalistic tops in shades of cream, beige or brown, for a chicer alternative.
Make sure your accessories are kept to the minimum by going for a single pendant chain and comfy sandals that you can wear all day.
For a Boardroom Meeting
Business attire makes for an excellent choice for boardroom meetings. A great way to captivate your audience is by wearing a sharp, tailored pant or skirt suit in primary brights. To nail the look, go for a navy blue one with heels or a summer-y lemon hued peplum top and trousers that are smart and chic in equal parts.
Make sure not to go overboard with the accessories, though. Nude pumps are your friend here, and when it comes to jewellery, you want to avoid chunky pieces and instead go for more subtle ones like a charm necklace that can add a touch of character to your outfit.
For a Business Lunch
Lunch meetings aren't a one-size-fits-all affair, and you need to determine the type of meeting in order to find an outfit that fits. If you're meeting clients, it's best to go with formal attire since it's almost similar to dressing for an interview— because first impressions are everything. For example, you can select a suit with an unusual colour or print instead of wearing a neutral one. You can also opt for a plain black midi skirt and a light-hued blouse to keep things fresh.
Accessorize with silk scarves as they can practically go with any outfit, and you always have the option to style them however you like.
For A Business Cocktail
After-hours work events call for cocktail business attire. You'll want to appear dressy but still somewhat conservative. This means a hemline that reaches your knee at best, nothing flashy and close-toed shoes for the most part. This Pistachio green shift dress would be a great choice!
The "cocktail" side of it requires you to add embellishment to your attire—a peplum or pussy bowed top, lace sleeves or a jewelled neckline.
Finish your look with a clutch and jewellery to ensure a flawless after-five appearance.
For Casual Fridays
Casual Fridays are possibly the only time where it's acceptable to wear something more laid-back to work. A striped tee paired with tailored cropped pants or an elegant shirt dress is the epitome of smart casuals.
Add some luxe-looking accessories like a textured leather bag, knee-length boots and asymmetrical earrings for the ultimate desk to dinner look.
So, what’s the verdict?
We hope our list provided the right office wear inspiration for your week!
It’s important to consider the rules for office wear at your workplace and work around them. For this reason, it's always best to dress a little more formally than necessary until you get to know what's acceptable at work and what's not. As long as your outfits are clean, neat and professional, it's hard to go wrong, regardless of the type of dress code your workplace has.
Another thing to think about when mulling about the type of outfit to wear to work is that it can affect the way people perceive you. So wear your confidence in style!
Go get ‘em power woman!