For a stylish gal, the real world can be difficult to understand because, lets face it, “professional business attire” is so not fashion forward. Skirts, pant suits, granny cardigans, pantyhose, and kitten heels all sound so…drab. However, there is hope! Certain staples that can be reworked in many ways, giving you more bang for your buck, and more options to turn a bland attire into a statement in the work place. Here’s my personal top 10 big girl closet musts:
- Fitted blazers (one black, one color)
- Pencil skirt (preferably black)
- Pants (one black, one white)
- Cardigans (one neutral, one color)
- White button down
- Ballet flats
- Dresses (knee-length, sleeved and sleeveless)
- Comfy pumps (black or nude)
- Large purse/bag
Now that you know what you need, here’s some tips:
- Utility: Use what you already have. Don’t make the mistake of shopping for a completely new wardrobe, especially for things like blouses, shoes, and scarves
- Accessorize: Use jewelry to step it up on neutral palates. Keep the jewelry small & balanced and choose between either earrings or a necklace.
- High-waisted: Depending on your body type, opt for more high-waisted skirts and pants because most likely you’ll want to tuck in your shirt. For professional attire, bottoms are increasingly more important. Make sure your skirt length is appropriate and pants are fitted well.
- Grooming: Depending on your work environment, try different hair styles. Why not try a topknot bun, or curls, or even a slicked back ponytail!? For makeup, keep it classic. You can definitely try a bold lip, just balance it out with simple eyes. For nails, keep it really simple. I usually just vary between nude and black.
- Color & Print: Just because everyone else you work with is older, and more dull, doesn’t not mean you need to adopt that vibe! Color is your best friend. Pops of neon are fun! Sometimes it’s easy to default to black, but variation is always good! Same goes for print. If you mix prints outside of work, why not while you’re at work? It’s really up to your discretion how wild you can get, but less is better in this situation
All you fellow graduates now embarking on interviews, jobs, and a more professional atmosphere need fear not. You don’t have to dull down your wardrobe, or your personality just because we’re big kids now. In fact, not succumbing to the mundane look of a traditional work place will do more good for you and leave a lasting, more memorable impression on a potential employer. Think J. Crew or Banana Republic for a chic and sophisticated look thats vibrant and will make you stand out! And regardless what you wear, remember to work it!
Rida Islam, Fashion Editor
All images via Pinterest.com