It has been a busy couple of weeks and a common theme amongst clients was how to adjust to a new smart casual.
For some, it was the work smart-casual wardrobe that needed fine-tuning after company-wide dress codes became less formal and for others, it was the weekend wardrobe that needed that next level up from really casual.
An educational client requested I share my thoughts with their staff on what it takes to dress for that next career move.
WORK WARDROBE DRESS CODES
Work dress codes have changed since I started working as a personal stylist in 2000. First, it started with “casual Friday”, which sent many clients in a spin, not knowing how not to dress too formally or too casually. Then workplaces became smart casual throughout the whole week, leaving perhaps a big chunk of your wardrobe unused.
Last year working from home became the new norm, introducing video into the workplace which highlights every detail of what you are wearing from the waist up.
So how is your wardrobe holding up with the transitions? The tips below apply to moulding your wardrobe around any change in your life.
1. WARDROBE CLEANOUT
Any change in work or life is a great opportunity to check in with yourself to see what is working in your wardrobe and what is not.
Yes, it’s time to do a wardrobe clean out, making notes of the gaps and working on new ways how you can mix and match your wardrobe to work in all areas of your life. Always with a fixed eye on your current work and social life.
2. RESEARCHING THE GAPS
Using a bit of time looking online at all the new looks in stock at your favourite brands pays off on the day you actually hit the shops. What looks do you like, what do you already have, what is missing?
Research also pays massive dividends in you not being overwhelmed when shopping. You have seen all looks a store have, and know which ones you want to try. Like being on the forefoot and not the backfoot. Use Pinterest if you want to file all the things away while you put together some looks.
And you might even want to start broadening your brand list with labels that sell online only.
The below Pinterest folder might give you some inspiration.
3. SHOP FOR THE GAPS
Having a clear plan of what you want to look for, starts the shopping trip off with a purpose. It is what I do extensively whilst preparing for a client personal shopping session.
Asking the shopping assistants to help you find something specifically will save you time too. They might be able to grab the correct size in other stores too.
Collect the pieces you had spotted online and be inspired by others that get your attention.
2 to 3-hour shopping sessions are great to keep your energy up.
4. HAVE YOUR QUESTIONS READY
If it is a new look you are putting together it will need your full attention to detail when it comes to you liking and wearing it.
Asking questions such as:
- Do I like the colour?
- Does it feel nice?
- Do I like the pattern (on me)?
- How is the fit?
- What will it go with?
- What are some obvious design details and how do they work for me? (buttons, pockets, zippers, lapels, sleeves, band)
- Is this item filling a gap?
- Do I love it?