Finding great grown up fashion for your working wardrobe is easy in the winter – we all know we can fall back on wool or wool-mix tailoring (dark blazers and jackets together with tailored trousers and pencil skirts).
But as soon as the temperatures rise and the sun comes out, summer workwear is more problematic because warm-weather clothing is not always office friendly.
In fact, let’s be totally honest here, it is the antithesis of office friendly as we can either roast in inappropriately warm clothes or look as if we were heading to the beach but got called in to work!
So, the dilemma is how to find clever work clothes that spell efficiency and authority but are also properly grown up and warm-weather appropriate. And not too cool (in its original sense) because most of us work in air-conditioned environments these days so we don’t want to spend all day getting frost-bite!
A dress with sleeves is a great option for summer workwear, as a dress with sleeves doesn’t need a jacket. A dress with sleeves also represents a good investment because with a deft switch of accessories (plus some statement jewellery) your office dress can be transformed into a party dress or a going-out-to-dinner dress in no time, flat. Among the gorgeous workwear dresses, below, there is a wrap dress by Hotsquash made with clever, keep-cool fabric.
If you prefer separates, jackets are always your friend when you need to look efficient and pulled together in the office. If you want to avoid shades of black clashing (or, for that matter, shades of navy clashing) team a plain summer-weight blazer with a skirt in a print that blends with the plain neutral – we suggest a skirt because print trousers are probably not the best work look.
Or for S/S16, you may want to consider a trouser suit for workwear. Trouser suits are super on-trend right now and a trouser suit in any neutral shade is a great workwear option. If you are good in shirts, add a crisp white shirt for an androgynous and sleek look that is perfectly fashion forward. Alternatively, you could team your trouser suit with a simple, plain tee or vest…
Summer workwear accessories can be difficult – none of us wants shoes we can only wear at weekends nor for that matter, shoes we can only wear to the office. But it has to be faced: beach sandals do not spell efficiency or authority. However, this season’s hot shoe – the classic plimsoll, if worn in black (or any other dark neutral) looks both on-trend and authoritative when worn with trousers (including a trouser suit) or a maxi skirt. And these can also slot easily into your off-duty wardrobe.
As for handbags, we ladies over 50 love a great piece of arm-candy and can generally be trusted to choose one sufficiently versatile for summer office and off-duty wear. SoSensational’s advice would probably be to avoid pastels or brights for workwear – even in summer. But a terrific tote in black, navy, tan or light grey will always find a place in a chic wardrobe and available to be taken out for work and weekends…
Do you struggle with what to wear to work in the summer?
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