An insane asylum every morning - this could be the most suitable description for my mind's state-of-mind, when I get ready for work. A wardrobe filled with clothes to bursting, and I, sitting in a lonely corner of my room, marveling what to wear. While I'd always subscribe for the under-dressed school of thought, over the over-dressed one, whatever be the dress code, it is the most appropriate if only it offers comfort. While work is a place you are supposed to go to everyday, there is an entirely different fashion wardrobe for it, altogether. Formals, semi-formals, et al make up for the perfect dress code to work, keeping your profile similar to that of a reputed executive.
However, with timely transformations in work patterns and business etiquette, the corporate world is, now, thumbs-up for casual themes for one or more days at work too. Think about it, wouldn't dressing casually be the best way to open up with your co-workers, with a certain level of ease and comfort? What's more, a dress code that is a little casual could offer a much required break from those mundane formals that leave you with limited options. While I have countless upscale options to make use of for work, you could sit back, relax, and recall every single piece of cloth lying orphan in your wardrobe as I move forward with examples on the same.
Smart Casual Dress Code
Taking account of this particular dress code policy at work, there exists a rather thin line between dressing casually at work, and dressing casually outside. While there is no limit to this kind of dress code as such, workplace ethics often restrain you from wearing just about anything and everything. It wouldn't be wrong to call it a casual business code of dressing, for it's casual, but with a seasoning of formal wear in it. What follows below is a segmentation of options both for men and women.
- A collared shirt with pants
- Loose khaki pants
- Collared T-shirts
- Non-ostentatious pullovers
- Semi-formal shoes (Please, avoid athletic sport shoes at work)
- Smooth cologne or perfume
- Shirts or blouses of subtle colors
- A-line skirts, preferably knee-length
- Jeans, not too curvaceous
- Wrap dresses
- Tees, not without a semi-formal jacket over
- V-neck sweaters or pullovers
- Closed shoes with heels
- Boots, preferably ankle boots
- Floral perfume
- Hair loosely tied, or left open
- Minimum makeup
No wonder, women have an edge everywhere! A semi-casual attire at work helps women open up with male colleagues, and this is definitely not a guess. I've seen it, personally. Nevertheless, the above two sections put forth options on what to wear in terms of a casual professional dress code. However, there could be a lot to wear outside work, if at all, the invitation card mentions no tuxedos, suits, and pants!
If that be the case, men could opt for designer pants, chinos, and not to forget, their favorite pair of jeans as the most appropriate clothing. If you are a tad unsure of the theme, it's always advisable to keep away from washed and faded jeans. Remember the overdressed-underdressed clause, stated above? You better do. Also, sober upperwear like T-shirts without slogans and of lesser striking colors are advisable. Semi-formal shoes are the best and the safest picks here too.
For ladies, on the other hand, dress pants, long skirts with appropriate slits, paired with silk blouses, sleeveless tops, and a coat are the best picks. If you're towards the plumper domain, wrap cocktail dresses could be a life saver. Don't forget heels in any case. I'd advise you to go for knee-high boots, as they transform your overall look. Leave your hair open, and apply a bit of makeup. Voila! You're ready!
You know, there's no sweep over to your attitude and confidence, whatever be the dress code. I believe, the most common fashion blunders are a result of under confidence, and the inability to carry the outfit. Be it a casual dress code, or a formal one, one thing could save you from making a mockery of yourself; confidence. It might be the worst cliché I could ever use, but nothing stands a chance when it comes to the truth. Trust me.