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Saturday, 6 September 2014

How to make office wear look less boring

Before I begin I'd like to note that I was neither paid nor influenced to write this post. All opinions are my own!

This is me at work :) 
I've wanted to discuss this topic for a while but one thing always stopped me: none of the companies I've ever worked for have had a dress code. I consider myself lucky because during the 10+ years of my professional life I have never been confronted by anybody because of the way I dress. Depending on my mood, the weather or you name it, I wear a jeans/T-shirt combo, or a fancy dress or a quirky outfit: nobody cares how I look. The same goes for client meetings: I don't always dress smartly for those. Having said that, I do not envy people who work in an environment with a strict dress policy, such as some of my friends from the financial sector or other "serious" industries. When I lived in Japan, I was particularly shocked by the monotonous mass of people working in corporations (salaryman, as they are usually called) on public transport, dressed in super boring and similar-looking outfits, Seriously, they all looked like clones!

I decided to share my thoughts on the subject and hear what you have to say. If we are lucky, we can create our own wardrobe and add a lot of special elements which make us stand out more! In saying that, I am sure, many of you are confined by rigid company dress policies.

So if I worked for a company with a dress code I would...

Sew my office wear from more expensive fabrics. 

In Japan, my company was located in the same tower as Barclays Bank and Samsung Ericsson. Every day as I approached the elevators, I could clearly identify who works where. Although people from both companies wore suits, skirts and shirts, they quality of the fabric their clothes were made from was not the same. I am sure that investing a little bit more into a higher quality fabric would resolve two issues: a smarter garment look and its longevity.

 Add colour to the strict office look!

If I had to sew my office wear, I'd use a lot of structured fabrics, materials with contrasting threads or simply more colours in contract to a black and white office palette.

On a business trip to our office in India. I fell in love with their daily outfits!

Use modern patterns to create a classic look. 

In my personal opinions, Style Arc does it better than anybody else. I may be wrong but Chloe, the designer behind the brand, spots all the newest fashion trends and immediately translates them into dashing patterns! I also like the way she pairs her patterns, based on celebrities' styles, to create an accomplished look and to give outfit suggestions.


Bring an element of surprise!

Buttons, a little embroidery or a contrasting lining can please even the most conservative boss!

One of my favourite "surprise" garments out there is Marina's godet skirt! The little bit of colour she used for the lining puts a smile on my face. Speaking of which, last year, I also sewed a garment with burst of colour, a classic black French jacket.


Whenever I seek an idea for accessorising, I often turn my eye to Erika B., a sewing and fashion blogger from the US. While her style is not really the same as mine, this woman know how to dress up!

Now, I'd like to ask you, especially those of you who do have to follow the office rules: if you sew you office wear, do you have any tricks to share? What do you do in order to stand out and make your outfit look less office-like?