Going back to the office… some people are thrilled, and others are realizing that it might be time to find a totally new job that allows for permanent WFH flexibility. Either way, it seems like a lot of companies are starting to enforce the truly hybrid work life (i.e. spending 2-4 days a week in the office) or bringing employees back on-site full-time.
If this is happening for you, or you’re starting a new job that requires you to be in-person, I hope you’re feeling safe about your working situation, and hopefully excited to experience true “office life” again. But there’s a question sooo many clients have been asking lately: “How the fuck do I dress like a professional ___ again??”
Whether it’s because your body has changed during the pandemic (which it very likely has AND THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH THIS) or just because trends have definitely shifted since March 2020, you might be having an “oh crap” moment while trying to put together an outfit that checks all the following boxes:
And I know that last point is one that you might be tempted to eliminate in the interest of time or money or just “getting it over with” but as your friendly personal stylist, I’m telling you that doing so will just make you unhappy and enjoy the “going back to work” experience significantly less.
At this point, your closet might need some “basics” that fit you well, or you need a couple of fun pieces to make you feel excited to dress for work again. Here are some ideas on what to shop for to help freshen up the options in your current closet
Practical But Cute Shoes
If your go-to work shoes were already pinching your feet or were generally annoying you when you were going to the office consistently, trust me, I would not rely on those to be your go-tos again. So this is an awesome opportunity to add to your shoe wardrobe and make sure you get something that is high-quality and fits like a dream.
Multifunctional Short-Sleeve Button Downs
You can get so much wear out of a short-sleeve button-up that drapes beautifully and fits you well. Wear it with dress pants, with a skirt, or over a jumpsuit for a sleek silhouette that will help you get more mileage out of your wardrobe! The Central Shirt from Madewell ($75) is a classic for a reason, or check out the Shirred Button-Front Shirt from Gap ($49.95) in a classic white or super stylish print. On the weekend or when you’re going out, these short-sleeve button downs look so good left open or knotted with a lace bralette underneath.
Wear together for a super polished look or mix and match to make even more of your wardrobe work. It feels like suit separates have been IMPOSSIBLE to find in the last couple of years, but hope is alive with options like these:
Everyone needs a “no brain power” option, and you can get a gorgeous and work-appropriate silhouette with a jumpsuit! The main things to look out for are wider straps or short sleeves, and making sure the fit leans a little more relaxed while still having some structure. I love this light blue breezy linen jumpsuit from Boden ($180) for casual Friday if your office is more formal, or make it work any day in an environment that leans more smart casual. Or grab a structured belted jumpsuit like this one from ASOS Design ($67) for a sleek effortless look.
In order to feel powerful going back into the office, it’s a good idea to very intentionally carve out time for outfit planning at the beginning of the week because the routine of dressing for work probably doesn’t feel as automated as it once did. So at the beginning of the week (based on how many days you’re in the office) plan your outfits– including shapewear, specific bras/underwear, and accessories! This way, you can also figure out when you might need to do a quick load of laundry or pick up your dry cleaning to make all your outfits possible in a week. Here’s what you can do in an hour (or two, MAX) to make dressing for success feel super easy each week.
If this list feels over the top, remember, THIS IS A FORM OF SELF CARE. Make sure you have all the tools you need to feel good about yourself and make it easy to show up for yourself each day. Hell, have a glass of wine or a treat, put on an episode of your favorite show, light a gorgeous-smelling candle, and make sure this routine feels like quality you-time. This little adjustment to your routine can really help to eliminate the “Sunday Scaries”, and reduce your morning stress during the week!
Here’s to only working at jobs that fulfill us, and treating our work outfits the same way! If this feels super overwhelming or you need to redo wayyy more of your closet, let’s chat– I’d love to help you find your vision. xoxo
I help dress your soul, and allow you to step into your higher self. You’ve already done most of the work – our time to work together occurs as one of the final steps before your transformation. Does that sound a little scary? It’s ok, you’ll always feel supported through the entire process. My goal is for you to love everything in your closet, and to feel incredible every time you get dressed.