(Sorry about the puntastic title.)
Business Casual – two words guaranteed to strike fear into the heart of any self-respecting fashionista. Not only does Business Casual conjure up images of stretch Lycra black bootcuts and sensibly-heeled courts, but the two words together simply make no sense. The phrase ‘Business Casual’ is a complete oxymoron, and it’s this confliction that leads to the pairing of stonewashed jeans with a shirt and blazer. Sometimes even a tie. Oh, the inexplicable horror!
Trying to dress for Business Casual often ends in couture carnage. Can I offset sandals by wearing a pencil skirt? Are city shorts okay if I’m sitting at my desk all day? Is denim ever acceptable in a boardroom? These endless worries about what’s appropriate for a Business Casual dress code inevitably lead to a wardrobe full of black and varying shades of grey, just to make things easier. And before you know it, you’ve got those sensibly-heeled courts on and you’re complaining to colleagues about the colour of the work experience girl’s nails.
If you don’t fancy morphing into Lorraine from Accounts, however, there are a few things you can do to spice up your office attire…
New Look skirt and blazer, Primark top and bangles, ASOS belt, Accessorize clutch, Eden wedges via Sarenza, H&M ring
- Introduce pops of colour with bright accessories
- Mix office staples like the classic blazer with loose-fitting tops
- Look for formal shapes in casual fabrics, like this denim pencil skirt
- Keep your look groomed – stick to neat hair and minimal make-up
Now, before you starting shouting “my boss would kill me if I walked in looking like that!”at me, I realise this might be too casual for some workplaces. If baring a bit of leg would have you hauled in for a meeting about decent personal conduct, it’s probably best you don’t push your luck. But you can build on the basics to create a more appropriate look – swap the skirt for tailored trousers and choose flat leather pumps for a sleeker, more professional look.
What do you wear to work? Would you wear this to the office or make it more formal?