Contributor: Harmony Richards
Dressing for the work week doesn’t need to be stressful. We have a million things to do throughout the week and changing outfits for 20 minutes in a panic, should not be one of them. As I approach my 40’s, I’ve started curating my wardrobe for work again. It’s poignant to point out that I’m not dressing for anyone but myself. Shilpa and I both work remotely, as well as any teams we work with. So aside from anyone seeing my top half, a curated wardrobe is really only for myself.
For any other work-from-homers, adopting the “I’m going to work” mindset through clothing has elevated my productivity throughout my day, and I believe the same principles can still be applied to those of us who work in an office.
Since I don’t believe in gatekeeping, here are 2 of my biggest style secrets for getting ready to work.
Curate your wardrobe.
We’ve touched on this in previous articles about curating a wardrobe, especially for work, has been vital to getting me out the door, the bedroom door that is. There’s something satisfying about having a minimalist wardrobe for work. I would by no means say my wardrobe is minimalist, but the work-friendly items certainly are curated to match each other. If your stumped on what curating would look like, here’s an inventory of my work wardrobe for the entire year:
- 2 x dress pants - one black matte, one cream silk
- 2 x dress skirts - one knee length black skirt, 1 mid thigh graphic skirt
- 3 x blouses - 1 black long-sleeve matte silk, 1 printed long-sleeve chiffon, bright blue short-sleeve silk
- 2 x sleeveless tank - black, cream
- 2 x blazers - short & tailored, long and drapey
- 2 x sweaters - black & cream
- 1 x slip dress
Alterre shoes in black, python, leopard, doe, and white + several straps.
*please note, my wide range of shoes is part of the business for when I do need to leave the house for meetings or events, if I were not slinging shoes professionally, I would narrow this down to three bases: dark, neutral, and print in various heights.
Pick an Outfit the Night Before
I often only have 15-20 minutes to get dressed for the day after my morning routine. Picking an outfit the night before gives me ample time to throw on some quick makeup and prep my lunch.
As you prepare something to wear, think about what activities you’ll be doing that day and don’t forget to check the weather!
Some questions to think about:
Do I have any meetings tomorrow? Are they in-person or virtual?
- I recommend avoiding black tops and small prints for virtual meetings. This helps separate your figure from the background and is overall less distracting. A plain but colored blouse + earrings are usually my go-to. Blazers don’t translate well virtually, either.
- For in-person meetings, I prefer to wear bottoms that are knee-length or longer. It’s not only perceived as professional across most industries but prevents potential offense to people from different backgrounds. My only exception is for fashion-specific events like a brand launch party.
Will I be walking a lot?
- If I’m walking a lot, I always wear low heels like our doe slides. I challenge the fool who dares to underestimate a woman in comfortable shoes.
- If I’m also walking outside, I style a sweater or blazer.
Do I need to go anywhere immediately after work?
- My husband and I recently started date nights on Wednesdays, which means I tend to choose work outfits that require minimal changing. This might be the day I wear a shorter skirt or a slip dress under a blazer.
- If you’re going out to a family activity, a sweater is a nice way to style an outfit to be more casual.
That’s it! Would you like to see some of my work styles? Comment below and we’ll make another post sharing some looks. Have any secrets to share? Share them with the community our comment section.