Business (Casual) as Usual

The tailored black dress, the blessed black pump, the fitted blazer and the fastened trench are all closet essentials when assembling the ideal career ensemble, no matter if one is wearing business casual or business formal. Women are fortunate enough to have more flexibility in their wardrobe; this creates opportunities for great ensembles and great disasters.

There are many rules of thumb when it comes to business dress; on another hand, there’s a great deal of exception, but the widely held truth is that business casual is the polished middle between dressing professional but looking relaxed.
The trick to achieving the casual professional look is to try to find pieces of clothing which give an impression of formality and familiarity. This can be achieved through collared shirts (polos and button ups), blazers and trousers being paired with neutralizing counterparts, such as pressed dark jeans, closed-toe flats and colorful blouses. Also, dresses and lengthy skirts can be softened with sweater sets and vests.
Concerning accessories, never wear more jewelry to work than you feel comfortable sleeping in, which, for me, is a pair of earrings, a necklace, a bracelet and perhaps two rings. This is true of business formal or business casual. An overwhelming amount of jewelry in the workplace reads as gaudy and tacky. When selecting bags for work, the fashionable tote, the traditional briefcase and the casual shoulder bag are all solid choices.

Try not to carry your belongings in a plastic bag or anything that’s frayed. When considering what not to wear, know never to show too much cleavage, too much thigh or too much midriff in the workplace. Also, leave your flip-flops, miniskirts and rumpled clothing in your closet, even on casual Fridays.

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