What To Wear
In Attire, Conduct & The Workplace By stacymorgan

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Office dress codes are generally defined by generic terms like “business casual”, but how do you interpret that?  The best rule of thumb is to dress for the job you want. 


Tops – For men’s wear a collared shirt, tucked in of course, is a must.  Formality may differ from one office to the next, so pay attention to your boss’ office attire and mimic the look, be it pressed polo shirts or starched to a crisp button downs. Women have slightly more freedom of expression in this category, but a chic blouse in an understated color is always an appropriate work fashion.  Cardigans are classic for colder months and can be dressed up when paired with a button down shirt or simply layered over a shell for more casual environments.  


Bottoms – Men’s wear to work pants may include suit type pants for formal offices and dockers or similar slacks for business casual work apparel.  Office appropriate men’s wear should always include a belt in the same color as your shoes.  And for coordinating trouser socks – ask your mom or girlfriend to help you if color coordination is a trouble area.  Seriously.  Women again have a greater realm of choices for work fashions, but pencil skirts in a suiting fabric are always wear to work appropriate (don’t forget the nylons!).  Women’s wear can also include trousers in classic suiting fabrics.


Footwear – For men appropriate wear to work shoes are dress shoes or classy loafers for a casual environment.  You don’t have to go crazy here, one pair of brown, black and navy should be plenty.  For women a slight heel is the most professional work wear.  Women’s wear should include dressy boots in cold months and classic pumps in warmer months.  Peep toe pumps are appropriate for business casual environments, just make sure your boss isn’t one of those people that harbors morbid disgust for other people’s feet.  


Color – Your work wardrobe should be comprised of classic understated colors like black, grey, navy and brown, but more creative industries often open to more freedom of expression, and therefore splashes of color. 


Keeping your work wardrobe aligned with your boss’ work fashions with a slight age-appropriate translation, is always your recipe for successful dress.

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