As much as it pains me to be lumped into this generation, I am a millennial–an old millennial, but still a millennial all the same. Our generation tends to clash with tradition and question everything. Naturally, we don’t do well with the traditional corporate career if there aren’t a few things to keep us sane. While those “sanity savers” may change for everyone, one of mine is maintaining the freedom to express myself through what I wear. Over the years I’ve learned what I previously thought–and what a lot of others think–about dressing for the office is actually one giant myth.
What’s the #1 myth about fashion in the office?
Workwear is boring.
Listen, we give office fashion a bad rap. As someone who worked strictly in retail for a little under 7 years, I can admit I would cringe at the thought of having to wear office attire once I was ready to leave the retail life. Here’s the thing: Workwear is actually exciting. It opens a whole new world of different fabrics and cuts and styles to try out until you find your groove.
And guess what? You actually don’t have to give up casual clothing. I even shared how to wear jeans in the office–something I wear on a regular basis. The key is to find a way to mix your casual item into the workwear rotation so the outfit is balanced and professional.
How to Keep Workwear Interesting
Don’t think of the traditional ill-fitting gray pencil skirt, black kitten heels, and white button down. Think big. Think current. When you don’t feel confident in what you’re wearing, it shows in the way you carry yourself. A power suit may work for some, but don’t force what isn’t meant for you. So how do you keep workwear from being boring?
- Shop where you normally shop, just browse the racks for office-appropriate clothing. I used to think when I switched to an office job I would have to totally change where I find clothes. Lucky for me, I couldn’t have been more wrong. Nearly every store now sells items that can be worn to the office, you just have to look through a different lens. I personally love Nordstrom and Topshop, but I’ve even scored some beautiful items from Forever 21’s Contemporary collection.
- Keep your personal style in mind while shopping. Just because you’ve had a career shift doesn’t mean you have to lose sight of who you are and how you dress. If you aren’t quite sure what your personal style is, I have 3 tips to help you with that exact problem.
- Browse online for fashion inspiration. Pinterest is a great resource when you’re looking for stylish outfits. Create a board to house all the gorgeous pins you find, and use it as a reference point during fashion slumps. Nend a starting point? Check out my office style board that’s totally dedicated to workwear-inspired outfits. Naturally, a lot of my pins consist of monochromatic looks as that trend aligns with my personal style.
Us so-called millennials may have a reputation for being entitled and spoiled, but the exciting part of our generation is our desire to push boundaries and ask questions. When the dress code may appear stifling on the surface, we think about how we can change the norm.