Finding ways to update your work style can be a challenge. There’s only so much traction you can get out of a suit and if you work in a super-corporate environment with a strict dress code, expressing your individuality without drawing too much undue attention can be a problem.
If you find yourself caught in a rut – here are five ways you can upgrade your work style:
- Interesting accessories say a lot about who you are as an individual. Use them to add some flare to a skirt or pant suit. The right shoe or bag can make you feel invincible and ready for anything. If your work style is very severe you can compromise with more playful accessories to lighten up your look.
- Pops of color can cheer anyone up on a cloudy winter day. I’ve used red here because it pairs well with neutrals but there is an entire rainbow of color to choose from so be creative.
- Bold patterns like floral or stripes can add interest to an otherwise boring outfit. Don’t be afraid to mix and match patterns, like I’ve done here with this pinstripe suit and the floral blouse. By keeping your prints the same color and mixing large prints with small prints you’ll look like a professional stylist.
- Textures like ruffles add plenty of personality to a basic suit. Above the ruffled shirt makes this severe suit rather feminine. If you are large breasted ruffles in your blouse may bot work but you can try textured tights for the same effect.
- Statement jewelry says a lot of about you as an individual, a statement necklace or brooch can add a lot of character to your work style. I am all about this bow tie brooch, it is playful but professional and that’s a difficult combination to find.
I am not a stylist by profession but I like to express myself through my style. As a creative professional, I like to play with my look and I’m not afraid to dress outside of the box. However, not every office setting encourages out of the box dressing. The most important thing is to find a happy medium. You want to be appropriate without blending in.
However, there is definitely a fine line between showing off your personality and distracting from it. Coco Chanel suggests that before you go out, look in the mirror and take something off – typically the most distracting thing you are wearing. This bit of advice has served me well in my life, I like to wear things that make me feel good and I have a tendency to over do it.
With work style however, we tend to be on the severe side, so my advice would be the opposite of the legendary Coco Chanel, take a look in the mirror before you leave the house and add something to your look. Use the tips above to guide your choices. When shopping don’t be afraid to add color, print and texture to your wardrobe. You don’t need to do this with your suits and blouses, instead you can do this through scarves, jewelry, shoes and hand bags. Stay true to your own style but don’t be afraid to take some chances. For many our clothes are a way to express who we are and in many cases, especially at work, they are a message to others about who you are. Choose wisely and keep in mind that every morning you have the opportunity to send a clear message about who you are to the world around you and in our wardrobe, like in life, don’t be afraid to take some chances.