Gone are the days of simple black suits and plain white blouses. Color and feminine style is creeping into the office workplace. We are seeing an increased attention toward suits tailored to fit women’s curves instead of boxy men’s style suits that are supposed to fit women’s bodies.
Power dressing balances feminine style with pieces that flatter women’s figures. Power dressing in 2012 takes fashion into the workplace. In the Wall Street Journal an article titled, “The New Elements of Boss Style” explores feminine tailoring, prints, florals and how to take these elements and integrate more of one’s own style into a professional business look.
A few tips this article recommends include:
1. “No more boxy jackets” I have to agree. A tailored jacket that flatters your body shape, accentuates your curves and highlights your waist is of utmost importance. Think outside the box. Be sure you buy the correct size, you want it to fit snugly but not too tight. Don’t make the mistake of purchasing a jacket that is too large, it won’t flatter your figure. Don’t buy a jacket unless it has little unique details that sets it apart. Look for ruched sleeves, a fun color, or even one in an unconventional fabric such as leather or silk. Don’t settle for boring!
2. “Mix textures” You can be edgy and yet convey authority. Don’t be afraid to let your personality show. It’s ok to mix fun jewelry with your work attire. If your personality lends itself to a fun chunky necklace wear it with your suit. You will look polished and yet convey your own unique personality.
3. The article suggests “cropped pants” and yet we think in the business world, “ankle pants” are a bit more acceptable. Be sure to pair these with heels and be sure to take the time to visit the tailor for just the right length.
4. “Structured bags” Carrying a purse for a fun “pop of color” is completely acceptable. If you look for a purse with a structured shape you will convey powerful authority, much in the same way a briefcase does for men. Avoid slouchy styles as these styles will be perceived as being more casual.
5. “Black is not the only neutral” Don’t be afraid to try brown, winter white or grey, depending on what your best neutral is. The article included a great floral print skirt with a neutral jacket. This is a fun way to ground the floral skirt and still keep it business like with a tailored jacket.
These are all great tips to help office style be a reflection of your own style without compromising professionalism. You can be stylish and authoritative at the same time.
Click to view the Wall Street Article Journal.