If you’re like me, a young 20-something and just starting out, money is probably pretty tight. So how do you build a functional work wardrobe for that all important ‘real world’ job- without breaking your budget in the process? Having your wardrobe do double duty, of course. Here’s a list of career must-haves that will keep you looking stylish in and out of the workplace.
1) Colored Jeans
Be sure and check beforehand, but if your company’s dress code allows jeans, you’re in luck. The bright hues of this season’s color craze gives you almost unlimited style options. Pastel shades look soft and sophisticated, while bold hues are confident and bold. Chic and comfortable!
2) Structured Blazer/Jacket
A fitted blazer or suit style jacket is one staple that every working girl’s closet needs. Throw this on over strapless dresses or tank tops, and your everyday look can be work appropriate in seconds. I like black for dressy occasions, and a tan/nude hued jacket for pairing with bright colors and patterns.
3) Everyday Heels
There’s no getting around it- heels look good, but can really get old after a long 8 hours of wear. To give your feet a break, choose wedges (which are much easier to walk in) or kitten heels. Still not ready to toss the sky high stillettos? Opt for gel inserts for some cushion and support. Many shoe stores offer inserts specifically for high heels (and often come in patters, too!) and are only a few dollars.
4) Hair Accessories
As I’ve mentioned before, hair accessories are one of the quickest and easiest ways to instantly look put together. Weather it’s a bold flower, demure headband, or colored bow, any accessory helps make a statement.
5) Bold Jewelry
Think all your solid colored T’s and tanks aren’t suitable for work? Think again. Paired with dress pants (or colored jeans…and/or a fitted blazer and heels…) and bold, eye catching accessories, and viola! Professional in a snap.
If heels aren’t your style, or you’re walking around a lot at work, flats are a no brainer. And with all the colors, styles, and decorative details on flats recently, it won’t be hard to find a pair (or several!) that works for you.
Strapless, backless, low-cut; sundresses of all styles can be made suitable for work. As long as they’re long enough, throwing on a short sleeve sweater or blazer changes the entire look. Now your dresses can go from BBQ to board room in a snap.
With just these few staple pieces, it’s easy to mix and match all of your everyday essentials into looks that are both polished and professional- without breaking the bank.