Dressing for work can be a real challenge. What they show in the magazines may not be appropriate for your office. Think short skirts, open-toes shoes and sleeveless tops. Unless you work in the most casual of businesses (or from home) those are generally not office approved. And even if some people wear them, what do the "bosses" think - the people that make the promotion decisions. As unfair as it seems, we don't always get ahead based on our skills alone.
I've done my share of hiring and interviewing in my former life. Your first-impression is important, so why not look your best? I remember in college, when everyone wore a dark blue suit to interviews. Not wanting to look like everyone else, I chose a lighter, dusty blue conservative dress (these were interviews with financial people). The dress was not too tight, nor was it too short. I paired it with some simple silver jewelry and basic pumps and I pulled my long hair back into a chignon. My accounting professor had a fit that I did not wear the "uniform" - she was sure I would never get hired. I did in fact get hired, but it wasn't with one of the more conservative accounting firms. Was it the dress? We may never know.
I recently attended a conference with a client of mine. We were both working, the conference attire was casual, but for us, that meant business casual. I always love the opportunity to dress up a little, since I work from home in jeans and yoga pants most days.
I took a few business casual liberties after researching the conference audience, and decided that leopard shoes and a shirt that hung below my jacket would be okay for this event. I could also wear my bracelet stacks,
None of those things would be appropriate for a job interview or a work environment was that business attire only. Perhaps the shoes, in a creative field with a black suit. PERHAPS. Here's how it ended up (sorry about the blurry picture - my 8 year old took it for me):
Jacket - Ann Taylor - Fall steal from the sale rack
Top - Ann Taylor - Early Fall Collection
Pants - Ann Taylor - Early Fall Collection
Shoes - Target - a few seasons ago
Bag - Vintage Kate Spade
Bracelets - Tiffany, Alex and Ani
I even added a string of classic pearls after seeing a picture on Instagram. They added just the right touch.
Keep in mind, when dressing for work, unless you're a fashion model, there are expectations about how you "should" look. Right or wrong, it's the way the world and people work, so use that to your advantage. Keep the short skirts, strappy sandals and sleevless blouse for date night! It may seem old fashion, but many fashion "rules" are.
What's your work uniform?
catch you soon -
This post is linked up at The Pleated Poppy and at Get Your Pretty On - check them out for outfit ideas and inspiration.