How do you accomplish being fashion forward and dress code adherent at the office? The two sound like opposites, but appearances can be deceiving.
The dress code doesn’t allow for shorts up to there, and office buildings are notorious for temperature shifts. Think of the code as a template to build upon with your best office basics, shaken and stirred with summer fashion trends. Here’s how to adopt some of the latest summer trends and dress to impress both HR and your inner fashionista.
1. The Wet Look
Once reserved for the club, the wet look made its way out of the recesses of flashing lights and pounding music to share its attitude with the business world. When you have little patience for time-wasters, it’s time to break out the wet look.
A totally metallic shirt with a plunging neckline is acceptable at the office with a black scoop neck tank underneath. This look is more appropriate for a networking mixer in the evening, but when mixed with the right basics, you can take it anywhere.
Color block with the wet look by choosing a blouse, blazer or pencil skirt. Alternatively, choose a wet look accessory as your fashion statement piece, such as a clutch or tall boot. Soften the look with other solid basics or a lace shawl.
2. Striped Tied Wrap Shorts
Striped tied bottoms are great for street looks and the office, particularly as pants, and the cute bow adds instant fashionista flavor as a relaxed but focused professional. Shorts present more of a challenge as office appropriate wear. The length should match the dress code requirements.
Pair solid color tights to go with the shorts to make them office-friendly. Match navy with navy or go for a bolder color for work culture that appreciates expression.
3. Tote Bags
Tote bags are a girl’s best friend on the go. You can toss anything in there, but you need the right tote to feel elegant for the office. Don’t give up the ease of finding items quickly in your tote for constriction and impatience of never finding anything when you need it the most.
Make your tote office-ready. Use a tote bag as a briefcase, customized by you to show off your personality — it can carry your pens, papers, laptop, snacks and more! Totes don’t have to be boring, and they make interesting conversation and style pieces.
Checkered patterns check out as a summer trend, moving beyond cold weather and bonfires. You’ll find them on purses, socks and other basics. The most appealing way to wear checks professionals are in structured looks, especially in elegant fifties silhouettes but with looser material — think of a higher waist dress with a structured top.
In warmer weather, you’ll see checks in pastels that flow in an ultra-feminine way, including ruffles. Pair a pastel checkered dress with a structured blazer and pearls, and you have an office-appropriate, but fashion forward look.
5. Voluminous Sleeves
The eighties make a popular comeback more fiercely as of late, mainly in the appearance of voluminous sleeves. Extra puffy sleeves make you think of Lady Gaga hitting the runway and would obviously get in the way of your office duties.
If your arms freely move, dare to wear voluminous sleeves at work. Pair a striped three-quarter, voluminous sleeved shirt with cigarette pants or a structured pencil skirt. The voluminous sleeves add a curvilinear effect as a statement piece, so you want to take the eye vertical as much as possible with a solid basic. Tuck a pastel blue kimono sleeve shirt into a knee-high polka dot or floral pencil skirt for an ultra-feminine look.
As someone who loves clothes, you passionately pair trends with your daily tend-to-wear items. It shakes up your looks and makes you reinvent yourself. When it comes to office fashion, the two terms don’t feel like a match. The office dress code feels more like a mandated uniform without freedom to flex your fashionista senses.
Reconsider the lines between office wear and summer concert or club trends. Instead of buying more clothes for every atmosphere and environment, you’ll save more money by innovating with what you have in your closet and indulging in your favorite summer trends. Mix up your looks in various settings.
Many of your go-to statement pieces and summer fashion trends pair well with office basics. The dress code is your template, and the rest is up to your impeccable fashion sense.