A couple of months ago, as I was formulating my summer outfit list, I realized that I had approximately 57 gajillion casual ensembles in mind and slightly fewer workweek ideas. And I panicked a little. I’m at the office all week long! How are all those cute-but-office-inappropriate outfits gonna help me?
But after a few deep breaths, I realized that it was just fine to brim with casual creativity. And here’s why:
Three out of seven: I realize that some gainfully employed women are expected to look sharp all week, but many of us are lucky enough to indulge in Casual Fridays. That means that fun, casual dressing occupies three out of seven days each week.
Casual continuity: I firmly believe that there needs to be overlap between my work clothing and my weekend clothing. In the past, when I had wildly different pools of office clothing and casual clothing, leveraging multiple styles made me feel like I had multiple personas. Working on fabulous-looking casual ensembles contributes to an overall feeling of polished style.
Easy tweaks: Some outfits will never be office-appropriate, but others can become beautifully business casual with a few easy tweaks. Swap out a denim skirt for a khaki pencil skirt, or go for pumps instead of studded gladiators, and a whole new outfit is born.
So much focus is put upon looking polished and chic in formal situations that creating honed, personalized, stylish casual looks can fall by the wayside. And since most human beings want to be COMFY whenever they’re outside a work environment, it can seem like a burden to scrape up the effort necessary to craft sassy weekend outfits.
But unless you work in uniform or under a strict dress code that drives you batso, I think it’s important to own and wear casual and transitional clothes that suit your overall style. Your tasks and environment may change, but your personality and tastes don’t. I’m of the opinion that your personal style should reflect your inner self at all times. Why dress like a completely different person come 5 p.m. Friday when you can create looks that feel comfortable and look pulled-together simultaneously?
Wondering how to make that overlap happen? For more tips on a honed casual style see: