Making Work Clothes More Interesting

Hello Indianapolis Fashionistas,

Work clothes are on my mind since my last couple of styling jobs have been dressing career Indianapolis women and men. I have to admit, it’s not easy to dress career professionals these days. With the relaxed work dress codes, the selection out there for those who want to look formal on the job is really lacking. And, no one wants to look like everyone else–right?

Indianapolis Personal Stylist – Corporate Wear

So…What is the answer. Well, first and foremost, when buying work clothes are you are going to wear quite often, buy the highest quality you can afford. I love brands like Theory, Hugo Boss, JCrew, Talbots, and some of Ann Taylor’s work clothes. Banana Republic had some nice looking grey solids and windowpane plaids as well. If you are an uber classic style, Brooks Brothers has some nice, formal work clothes of the highest quality. Buy these clothes in sedated colors since people will not remember them and you can wear them many times — maybe even in the same week: we’re talking about navy, black, grey, burgundy, brown and khaki.

Make sure you have good quality shoes. They really upgrade an outfit. Real leather, clean, shined and well-fitting shoes will complete your look. Don’t forget to add a high quality portfolio in leather or a good imitation. A beautiful work ensemble with a cheap looking bag is not going to help your image.

Avoid wearing cheap, trendy jewelry with work ensembles. They’re fine for the weekends in your festival Boho attire, but they don’t have any place at work. Pearl and gold studs, chunky silver chairs and nice looking watches will add to your professional look. Less is better with work outfits. If you want to invest in one piece, buy a nice watch. It doesn’t have to be extremely expensive; Burberry, Brighton and Orvis watches are less expensive and give you a nice men’s wear touch. I tend to like the bigger watches,  but this is a personal preference.

Outerwear Tips From Your Indianapolis Personal Stylist

Don’t forget about your outerwear. Again, buy as good a quality as you can afford, especially if your coat is black. Cheaper black coats attract lint and look cheap very quickly. Your coat is one of the first items people notice about you. Think of how much you wear them here in Indiana! You don’t have to buy Burberry–I was considering buying a Burberry trench and bought instead a really good looking khaki trench coat from Coach. Also consider some consignment sites such as Posh and Gilt. Oh, don’t make the mistake of wearing an extremely casual coat with your work outfit. Right away, it makes you look mismatched and perhaps ready for a camping trip or hike.

Finally, once you have the suits and are ready to put the rest of your outfit together, why not make the top you wear interesting. Try polka dots, a small floral or plaid in a coordinating, but not matching color. Also there are some beautiful cami tops that look great under jackets. Button-downs can be elegant, especially in color block. Comfy, good quality sweaters can make an elegant look under jackets as well. Just make sure your top is work appropriate, and it’s not a casual top you’d wear on the weekend. Silk tops are beautiful, too, underneath jackets. I really like the shells and cami’s at Ann Taylor and Banana Republic as well as Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack. They can hang out the back of your jacket or can just be the same length. Make sure they fit you well and are not too big or long. If tops seem to be too long for you, try the petite department sizing for tops. I sometimes wear them, and I am 5’4.”

Another good option for work clothes is JCrew Mercantile. It’s great for Casual Friday and more relaxed work environments. JCrew jackets are always amazing!

Keep it sassy, and keep your work look fresh and new!

Beth Divine, Indianapolis Personal Stylist