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Need some new ideas on how to freshen up your work wear? Here’s some amazing outfits you can find at some of my favorite shops – they incorporate season trends, realistic pieces that will keep you warm in the cold, and will also be able to be mixed and matched in with your current wardrobe to create looks that are work worthy.

Outfit #1 is comprised of staple pieces (the black pencil skirt, basic blazer, and pointed toe heel) and fun bits of trends. Polkadots are hot – and they aren’t just for little girls anymore, they’re all grown up when paired with an adult pencil skirt and colored blazer. Wearing a colored blazer to work means challenging the norm, so be careful how bright you go – depending upon your industry you may be able to get away with any range of colors, but for corporate America, stick to playing with royal blues, navies, plums, burgundies, and other jem-toned hues. Easily mix up your footwear by wearing a cap-toe heel that has a two-toned color in some basic colors that will also coordinate with another piece in your ensemble. Bows are cute and when paired with a professional outfit, they are a great way to let a little bit of your personality shine through.

Outfit #2: Target is a working woman’s best friend when it comes to combining affordability with function. A well fitted (and tailored!) dress in a basic color (like grey, navy, & black) will be a staple that you can accessorize with a great many colors and prints for a long time – the more versatile the piece, they more outfits you can make with it! Mixing up your shoes is a perfectly safe way to try out some of the trends or to add a bit of a fun print into your work wear. Leopard print is classic, but not normally worn in the office – if you’re looking to try this at work, remember your heel doesn’t have to be sky high and it should always be closed toe.

Outfit #3 by Mango is black on black with a classic preppy print makes a great base for accessorizing with one key color. Black and red is a timeless combination that is, well… sexy, there’s no doubt about it. Sexy isn’t normally reserved for the office, but it isn’t necessarily against the rules. Balancing out an outfit to cover you up enough to keep some “to the imagination” while allowing you to show off a bit isn’t always easy. Just remember – you need to be able to sit at your desk without anyone seeing up your skirt, so make sure it’s long enough to cover up (I know this goes without saying, but sometimes we need to be reminded!) If you cover up on top more than usual (say a turtleneck and sleeves) you have a little (now don’t take a mile while I’m giving you an inch!)…little wiggle room to show off some skin on the bottom half…and while you’re at it, why not add some interest with a daring red heel! It’s a pop, but still subtle enough to not alarm your clients or your boss. Pairing your nail polish to your colorful accessories is a fun way to balance out the color in your outfit so that you’re not boring in monochromatic.

Outfit #4: Blending the lines of high fashion and affordability is just what the conglomerate of Old Navy, Gap, and Piperlime have done and it’s amazing. Mixing in high fashion (and high priced) items with lower end items instantly makes your outfit look more fashionable (and expensive!). Black pants – the failsafe of all failsafes of work wear…mix it up lady! Throw in a bit of color, maybe a little print, don’t be afraid to change it up. Leopard print can be paired with many colors, why not try a deep green or navy (two of this year’s hottest colors!) in your heels. Mary-Janes are all grown up when you go for a chunky heel with a smooth rounded toe in deep hues. Gold accessories will always make you look your best (shiny has a way of doing that!). By wearing expensive accessories, it’s the little details that people will remember you for and see your inner fashionista shining through.

Outfit #5 by H&M features colored pants and the ever more popular Dalmatian print of the season.  If you’re allowed to wear jeans in the work place, try wearing colored denim with a black and white printed top – it’ll instantly step up your casual Friday status and transition you easily into a night out with friends. Basic black flats are an excellent alternative to wearing heels everyday (even fashionista’s feet need to take a break once in a while!).

If you haven’t noticed, in each outfit inspiration board I’ve also included a bottle of Essie nailpolish. I believe that having a fresh manicure every week for work is important for two reasons: first it’s an immediate impression people will get from working with you (we use our hands to work, to shake hands with clients, we type and write and hand things to each other….basically we use our hands for just about everything in the workplace & Clean & polished = a responsible person whom I trust to work with). It’s important to put your best foot….err fingernails forward. I hope you enjoyed these inspiration outfit boards – now get to shopping to create your new work worthy outfits!

xo, Kate

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