I’ve mixed things up a bit today with a guest post! Enjoy hearing from a new voice to encourage you to remix your closet like a champ!
Suit jacket. Button down. Trousers. Pumps.
If this routine sounds all too familiar — and all too “blah” — it’s time to revamp your workplace style. Even with office-appropriate pieces, cuts and colors, you can still have fun with your wardrobe. Below you’ll find five tips that teach you just how to do so. Try these out and then waltz into the boardroom in style.
1. Get Rid of What’s Causing Your Rut
That worn-out blazer is bringing you down, so why do you keep wearing it? If you want to freshen up your clothes selection, it’s time to clean out and organize your closet. Get rid of anything you don’t wear regularly; alternatively, get rid of the pieces you’ve worn so much it shows. You’ll feel even better when you donate these items to a local charity that provides clothing to those without means to purchase it.
Next, organize what remains. Some fashion experts propose that you divide your clothes by color, while others suggest organizing by clothing type. If you’re like me, you do both. Choose the system that works for you, and you’ll be amazed at how much more enjoyable it is to pop into your closet each morning. You’ll be able to see all of your clothes more clearly, too, which means you can make some new outfits.
2. Find Your Inspiration
Have you ever heard of the hash tag #ootd? It means “outfit of the day,” and fashionistas everywhere use it to show off their best looks on social media. Using apps like Instagram and sites like Pinterest, you can peruse others’ outfits to find inspiration for your own workplace fashion.
Perhaps you can find a new way to style something you already have or find a completely new look you want to add to your arsenal. This research will help you when you start creating new outfit combinations or go shopping to find new pieces.
3. Build a Look Book
You don’t have to be a fashion designer to have your very own look book. A pioneering workplace fashionista like you could benefit greatly from a collection of photos that show pre-approved outfits you can grab, throw on and go.
Spend a weekend afternoon pulling combinations of, say, skirts, shirts and cardigans or blazers that work well together. You could even figure out the shoes and jewelry that would match, too. Then snap a photo to remember the style you’ve created. You can use these photos when you’re looking at your closet, stumped. With the photos, you’ll reassure yourself you’ve got plenty to work with.
4. Try Something New
Maybe you’re in a fashion rut because you always wear the same thing. If you’re addicted to black work clothes, try and avoid wearing them for an entire week. You might just be amazed at the colorful looks you put together.
You could also try buying new clothes in different silhouettes, textures and colors. Of course, it’s advisable to keep your office’s dress code in mind, but there’s always room to have fun. Try a brightly colored pencil skirt with a more demure button-down on top, or put a classic blazer over a romper instead of a dress. Even these slight deviations from the norm will keep you — and the world at large — entertained with your wardrobe.
5. Accessories: Icing on the Cake
Finally, you can spruce up your workplace fashion by adding a little bit of sparkle on top. A bold, brightly colored statement necklace can seriously transform your favorite suit-and-blouse combination. The right accessories can also make your workplace wardrobe wearable year-round: switch out a pair of pumps in the winter with, say, wedge sandals in the summer. If you want to dip your toes into workplace fashion before fully diving in, accessories are the place to start.
In more liberal workplaces, you can take this even further by playing with your hair and make-up. Trade out your run-of-the-mill ponytail for, say, a textured-top pony with loads of volume. Add a winged tip to the end of your everyday slick of black eyeliner for just enough drama. You could even pump up your pout with a layer of bright lipstick. The possibilities are endless and they’re easy to incorporate.
Try giving yourself a new makeover each morning for a week to find the styles that work at work.
Thank to Sarah Landrum for sharing her ideas to revitalize our workplace wardrobes! Be sure to check out her site, Punched Clocks, where she writes many valuable articles about finding happiness and success in our careers.
Sarah is a freelance writer and the founder of Punched Clocks. Known at work for her fashion sense, she loves writing about the many ways to enhance your work style. For more from Sarah, subscribe to her newsletter and follow her on Twitter @SarahLandrum