Business Wear Basics

Images via Pinterest

Happy Wednesday pretties! I've had a couple of requests for office wear and wanted to share some inspiration that I follow in my own wardrobe. I tried to include a range from business casual to formal suits. Working in investment banking, the guys in my office wear suits, but the only rule we have is no jeans. Below I outline my work wear basics if you are in the business casual setting:

Cropped / Ankle Slacks:

As much of a girly girl as I am, at work I tend to stick to slacks. They're so much more comfortable and give me a sense of confidence that I don't have to fidget with my outfit like I would a skirt or dress. A nice sleek black pant with a blouse and blazer will always be classic and professional. 

My favorite slacks at the moment are from (believe it or not) old navy! I had a sizing issue with the last couple pairs I had bought and needed to pick some up for the colder weather heading to Chicago. I stopped in Old Navy for a knit beanie and came out with four pairs of slacks. These are thick, durable and come in many options!

WBD:

Every women knows the LBD, but those are not always appropriate for office wear. The WBD (work black dress, I'll admit I totally just made that up) is something you could wear to work often and utilize in many different outfits. Pair it with tights and blazer in the fall and a fun, statement necklace in the spring. 

The best cut and style is different for every body type, but a classic A-line or pencil skirt is usually flattering on all body types! Banana Republic makes some beautiful options here. I am loving this one!

Pumps:

When it comes to my personal wardrobe, I stick to the neutrals for work and play up my shoes. It can be difficult to tie in that one beautiful, print blouse you love, but it is always possible to style beautiful shoes. 

When I am looking for heels, I typically want to get something that I know can be style for work and outside the office. Sam Edelman is the man in this department. My favorite work shoe is his Hazel Pump. They come in pretty much every color you could want and are comfortable! I've walked about 12 blocks in them and was still fine to stand on my feet at the cocktail party I was going to. 

Blazers:

One of the best pieces you can add to your wardrobe is a blazer. Blazers add such a chic and timeless element to an outfit. If you're just starting out in building your professional wardrobe, I highly recommend getting some in the basic colors: black, navy and/or white and beige. Once you are comfortable in your workplace and understand the work wear standard, you can add in some great looks like in the pictures above.

Blazers can also be a great from work to play outfit. With a clean white blouse under the blazer, matched with some jeans and pumps, just switch out your purse for a fun clutch and add some lipstick and you'll be the chicest girl at the bar or restaurant!

Go to Blouse:

We all have at least one item in our closet that we resort to if we feel like we have "nothing to wear." When it comes to work wear, that piece should be a clean, white button down, in my opinion. If you're stuck on what to wear that day, this type of blouse is always a safe bet. 

Pair it with a blazer or necklace and some slacks with a belt and you're good to go! Buying for work is always about picking pieces that will last and can be rotated easily. 

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Once you have the basics down, you can have fun adding items to the rotation that add some sparkle or color. Based upon where you work, you can have more fun than others, but even if you need to wear a suit every day, think about ways you can add some femininity or flare to the outfit. A peplum suit jacket or blouse with a bow neck tie, add another level of detail effortlessly.  

When I was searching for my work wardrobe when I graduated I was finding that most of the pieces I wanted were too high end and not very affordable. In today's fashion marketplace there are tons of options to find well-made, affordable work pieces for your style. Some of my favorite shops for business casual are:

Banana Republic | H&M | Zara | Old NavyTopShop

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I hope this was helpful and that you found some inspiration if you're looking to ramp up your work wear! Thank you so much for reading! xx