Fashion: “Serving It" in the Workplace

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By Arica Norton, B.S/Fashion Stylist & Consultant Welcome to 2015, the year of “let’s get it done.” And if you’re over 25, you’re most likely ready to spruce up your image to a more mature and chic look to add to that go-getter attitude! So, why not begin with the place you’re seen most? That’s right, at work! Whether you work for corporate America or you're an entrepreneur, dressing up to par will definitely have you turning heads.

Before we get started, here are 2 of my most crucial rules to image!

Rule #1: Be comfortable with the skin you’re in. This is vital!  Be honest with yourself about your size, shape, and interests. Take notice of the things that accentuate your natural body shape, bring out your face, and looks that you like. Once you have identified these things, make them you, and everything else will fall into place. Be confident, and own it!

Rule #2: Always create a complete look. If you’re going to wear a nice outfit, make sure your shoes match, and your hair (makeup, nails, etc.) is intact. Think of it as the physiology of the human body. The human body doesn’t work unless all systems are functioning properly, and it’s the same with dressing. At the end is not the time to get lazy ladies!

Top 5 Must Haves:

  1. Slim fit/Straight leg pants: Looks great with almost any shoe- flats (I recommend ballet or pointy toe) , heels, oxfords, loafers, boots, etc.
  2. Midi/High waist/Pencil skirts: Either three of these skirts goes perfect with a nice blouse, turtle neck, and/or blazer. And most important they are all mostly knee length!
  3. Dresses: Especially in the summer! Usually the cheapest and easiest to dress up for work. Try to avoid adding a belt or cardigan to the mix (I know we love our cardigans lol). It decreases the killer look you may be going for. For a more chic look, try a blazer or even add a long kimono like the one pictured below.
  4. Sweaters: In the winter they are your best friend for a more relaxed look. They go great with pants/skirts and nice shoes.
  5. Outwear: If you don’t have anything else in your closet, make sure you have a pea coat and leather (or faux leather) jacket. They can be dressed up or dressed down, and goes perfect with almost any outfit.

Top 3 places to shop:

  1. H&M: Who else is as affordable and chic? With their consistent sales and recent expansion on clothing items (they have a catalog of 258 pages they recently mailed out; which I love!) they should definitely be on your go to list. If you’re in the Philadelphia area, the Rittenhouse Square location is the best for work attire. The store is mostly made up of appropriate and fashionable clothing items.
  2. Express: They have a considerable selection of work attire. I really recommend their suits, sweaters, flats, and accessories. Not to mention their awesome sales throughout the year where you’re saving 30-50% off.
  3. Loft: Another place you can’t go wrong with finding essentials is at the Loft! Be sure to check out their tops and dresses. Their selections are a breeze for a quick yet stylish outfit.

Other favorites for workplace attire: Target, Gap, Nordstrom, Aldo Shoes, & Zara.

Now that I have given you a quick lesson to “serving it at work,” it is time to match your dope ambition with style. The work place is now your own personal stage, well at least in your mind ;). Be sure to check out the looks I've created (via Polyvore) below for inspiration.

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