Wear to Work: Trends for the Office

Wear to Work: Trends for the Office was originally published on Vault.

Fashion is always evolving, and we can thank the constant cycle of trends for that. Every season we are greeted with new emerging trends straight off the runway. There are plenty of trends that never catch on, but the ones that do spread like wildfire and can quickly be found for purchase at every retail outlet. The question is: Which trends are worth investing in?

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If you spend the majority of your week in an office, you will want to invest in trendy pieces that can double as workwear. From an oversized jacket to a bright, bold hue, here’s how to navigate the world of trends in a professional setting.

Boyfriend Fit

Nothing is more comfortable than the oversized trend, also known as the boyfriend fit. Brands are designing menswear-inspired pieces that are oversized for extra comfort, ranging from jackets to sweaters to jeans. When worn with tailored pieces, they can instantly elevate your look from sloppy to chic. A great place to start with this trend is to buy a slim-fit boyfriend coat. It’s still slightly oversized, but it will accentuate your shape and can be worn as an extra layer both in and out of the office.


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The monochrome trend makes getting dressed easy. This trend calls for wearing separates in the same color scheme for an overall tonal look. Chances are you have plenty of items in your closet that fall within the same color shades. Mix and match tops and bottoms to see what outfits you can wear into the office. In the warmer months, pair white jeans with a white blouse. In the cooler months, opt for a sweater and trousers in a pretty shade of red or plum. Wearing one color from head to toe also sets up a blank canvas for statement accessories to shine, such as a jeweled necklace or a pair of tassel earrings.

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Cropped Pants 

Ditch your full-length trousers and buy a pair of cropped pants, a workwear trend that’s gaining popularity. If you’re unsure about the cut, start with classic tapered pants. The fit is flattering, as they are relaxed through the hips and narrow towards the ankles. By highlighting the thinnest part of your legs, they streamline your silhouette, making you look long and lean. Or, go fashion-forward with a cropped wide-leg or fled trouser. Wear them to work with a crisp white button-up and a pair of pumps, and switch into a silk tank and leather jacket when the clock hits 5 p.m. Best of all? Bare ankles let your cute footwear get noticed.

Over-the-Knee Boots

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A pair of over-the-knee boots should be a staple in every woman’s closet. They have become such a popular footwear trend that most shoe designers have a pair in their collection. However, over-the-knee boots can air on the side of too sexy, which may raise some eyebrows in a more conservative office. To be safe, invest in a pair with a low or flat heel to wear to work. They’ll look adorable with a pair of tights and your favorite dress or skirt.

Putting the Whole Look Together

As fun as fashion trends can be, be aware that not all of them are deemed office appropriate. A safe rule to follow is if you find yourself questioning whether a trend is appropriate for work, it probably isn’t.

Before you start incorporating specific trends into your wardrobe, try to visualize outfits with that piece. Ask yourself a few important questions:

  • Does it fit well?
  • Will you wear it often?
  • Can you wear it to work?
  • Is it worth the price tag?

Because fashion trends go as quickly as they come, it’s important that you can justify your purchase, even if the trend only sticks around for a few seasons. Shop consignment stores and secondhand sites like thredUP to get trendier pieces at a low price, so that you don’t have to splurge on clothes that you may only wear for a short amount of time.

Once it finds a place inside your closet, use your creativity when getting dressed for the day by turning catwalk trends into polished, work-appropriate looks.

Allie Lochiatto is a fashion blogger who provides helpful, budget-friendly style tips for work and play. She writes for her own site, Allie Wears, and for thredUP, an online and offline consignment store that offers a great selection of women’s work dresses.

By Allie Lochiatto - Vault
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