Recently, I got into an interesting conversation on Twitter about whether it is appropriate to wear lace stockings to the office. I know that it is a big trend right now, but I just can’t get into it . . . at least not for an office environment. (Perhaps if you work in the entertainment, fashion, or music industry you can get away with it. But otherwise, IMHO, the answer is no.)
This whole conversation got me thinking, “How can you incorporate trends into your business wardrobe?”
Even though I’m not necessarily excited about all of the fashion trends for Fall 2012, I would be lying if I didn’t admit that quite a few of them lend themselves to a corporate environment. Reflecting on the trends, as well as the need to maintain a polished image in the workplace, I’ve come up with these three steps for incorporating trendy apparel into your business attire:
BONUS TIP: Don’t forget about your hair and makeup! Several of the hottest hair and beauty trends for Fall 2012 would work perfectly well in the workplace. The perfect ponytail and top knot are two of my faves for hair. In terms of makeup, I am loving the red and berry stained lips as well as the winged liner trend.
1. Start with a basic suit. You want the “bones” of your look to be straightforward – a well-fitted jacket and complimentary trousers or skirt in basic colors. No funky hues or supertrendy cuts. (NOTE: This not to say that you can’t wear, say, a tangerine blazer or patterened peplum skirt to the office. You just want to be wary of trying to do much at one time. If you opt for a more daring component in your basics, be sure to play it a little more conservative with the rest of your look. You don’t want to be known as “that lady who thinks the conference room is a runway.”)
2. Add some statement jewelry. Now you all know that I love my statement jewelry. In particular, the collar necklace trend really lends itself to a corporate look. (Stylish Curves recently published a great post on the collar necklace trend.) Other options might be a bracelet watch, brooch, or other statement jewelry piece.
3. Punch it up with colorful shoes, handbags, etc. This is where you can really go trendy as you polish up your look with shoes, handbags, or other accessories that draw upon the hottest colors of the season – oxblood red, kelly green, cobalt blue, etc. You can also take your cues from the trends in terms of what types of bags and shoes to rock. For instance, oversized handbags are very big right now, as are metal cap toe shoes. These are just two examples.
Here’s a little visual key for pulling everything together:
Taken together, these tips translate into a coy, understated way of communicating to your colleagues, “Yeah, I’m on my corporate grind. But I know how to be trendy, too!” What are your thoughts on this issue? Do you like to rock trends in the office? Are there any trends that you think are particularly inappropriate for the workplace? Share in the comments section!