Office Formals for Women : Outfit of the Day

by mehak on March 9, 2011

in Fashion

If you are a young fashionista, who has just started work, chances are every morning you wake up, take a look at your closet and groan. All your cute floral print t shirts, that were everybodys envy in college wont make it to work. Neither will your skinny jeans, nor your denim skirts or jumpsuits, …the miltary shirt dress you had..nope that wont  work either. Well, what will work then? Shirt , Pants, Business Suit, Sarees? Thats just boring isnt it?? Thats exactly what i thought when i started work a year back, but a year on, i think iv found my comfort in balancing my style statement without looking innapropriate for work.

Keep Reading..Theres lots more ……

 This is an example of what i would wear to office without feeling dull and boring. The high waisted skirt is tres chirt and the shirt is a nice deep purple. Its work appropriate , but fun too.

Skirt: Van Heusen Women Rs 1000 (20$)
Shirt: Penny Lane Rs 700 (15$)
Belt : Vero Moda : Rs 350 (7$)
Bag: Forever New Rs 2400 (50$)
Stringy chain worn as bracelet: Forever 21 : Rs 299 (6$)

Ideas for office formals- keeping it stylish and fun

Skirts for Office: Play it Safe

  • Keep it no shorter than knee Length. You want to be stylish, not suggestive
  • Keep Skirts in solids, and stripes- large floral prints, or big geometric designs are not okay
  • Keep Skirts in muted colors- taupes, beiges, charcoal greys, black, blue, brown. Hot Pink is not okay
Shirts for Office: Experiment with them
  • Play around with the color of your shirt. You dont have to go boring here- pick vibrant purples, blues, pinks. Just make sure you match it with a muted bottom
  • Look for Interesting cuts- flared sleves,  small frills,  ruffled detailing. These elements add an individual style, and if kept to a limit are formal as well
  • Nothing is as stylish as a crisp white well fitted shirt. Every working girl needs one
  • A nice way to dress up shirts is with scarves. A knotted scarve on your neck is very chic, and work appropriate too
Formal Tops: An alternative to stuffy shirts
  • You dont always have to wear a collared shirt to be formal. Tops with a high neck, polo neck tops are considered formal as well
  • Formal Blouses- chinese collared, or where the neck is close to your collar bone, Pussy bow blouses in Satin are considered formal
  • When wearing a formal top, try and get a solid color with no print or stripe. A formal top can look casual if it has a strange print on it
Pants: A Wardrobe staple
  • Invest in one  pair of black pants. You’ll find yourself reaching for one everyday
  • If you are tall, you can carry off wide legged pants with a fitted shirt- its very in, and work appropriate
  • For petite frames, stick to fitted pants or boot legs
  • While your pants should be fitted, make sure they dont suffocate yr ..err..derrierre  ..You dont want underwear lines showing from behind.

Suits: Its all about Power dressing

  • Suits can look totally stylish in the right cut, fit, and color . Wear a cut wear the suit cinches at the waist , to flatter every body type.
  • If a full suit bores you out, then buy a jacket seperately and wear it with a pant and shirt. Forever 21 has some really nice blazers- these are pieces you can wear over a t shirt when with friends for a ‘boyfriend blazer’ look, or throw over your shirt and pant for an office look

Dresses: Basic is Best

  • Dresses follow similar rules to skirts. Dress should not be any shorter than knee length
  • Belted dresses, dresses with shirted tops like the ones above look great at work, while stringy, strappy numbers do not
  • Flared and flouncy dresses, should best be avoided. Straight fit and A line dresses are more appreciated
Indian Wear: Churidar Kurta
  • Most churidar kurta’s are considered formal. Unless you have a large floral print with sequins going on, your basic  fab india kurta’s or salwar kameez from cottons will do

    Accessories: Create the look

    • Bags – No rules here. Almost all bags will do (Except ofcourse you have a pink fur one with “I love juicy” written on it)
    • Scarves are a great way to dress up a plain shirt. A knotted scarf at the collar looks chic as well
    • Jewellery- Pearl necklaces, delicate chains, hoops, studs, are all good as long as theyr not too blingy. (I dont always follow this rule though. I love my dangly earrings way too much!!)
    • Shoes- Heels, and flats both are formal. They need to look like sandals, or peep toes, or pumps and not like chappals.

    Where i pick up my office formals from?

    Van Heusen WOmen : The one stop shop for all your formal needs, They have skirts, dresses, shirts, pants and lots more. Its my fav store out of all the formal stores in India
    Marks and Spencers: Very nice shirts, formal, tops, suits and pants. Fitting is not that great though
    Mango: Great stylish trousers, and skirts
    Penny Lane: Affordable option for some basic bright colored shirts
    Zara: Formal tops in satin
    F21 :(For Blazers only)There is nothing else in this shop that is formal
    Vero Moda (For Blouses) : Nice European style formal blouses
    Indian Churidar Kurta’s/ Salwar Kameez: Cottons (by Jaipur) (V . V highly recommended shop)

    This was a post requested by Poohkie , who recently made a job switch to a more formal environment and was clueless about what to wear that was work appropriate , yet fun. Thanks for the request Poohkie, it was fun doing this, hope it helped !!!!

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    { 15 comments… read them below or add one }

    Hungover on Fashion March 9, 2011 at 5:42 am

    Hey babe, very nicely written article..N you looking nice too :)
    Now the thing's that I have a very very similar article under construction (Some pics are also the same). So I am wondering what to do :)


    PeachesandBlush March 9, 2011 at 5:45 am

    @HOF- arre post it !!! More the merrior!! Everyone will have similar pics cos we all love van


    ClassyandFabulous March 9, 2011 at 5:45 am

    Haha the necklace!
    You look so nice love the high waisted skirt :D
    but this is another reason I want to work in a creative field. Cud never keep on wearing formal stuff day in day out!


    Hungover on Fashion March 9, 2011 at 5:46 am

    Ofcourse, great minds think alike :)
    The only difference, I was planning to include some more accessories in terms of jewelery etc..


    Hungover on Fashion March 9, 2011 at 5:49 am

    all in all I cant stop commenting cos I love such posts.. Dressing up well at work is something I believe in very firmly (may not always follow it :))


    PeachesandBlush March 9, 2011 at 5:50 am

    @PHDinfashion- you get used to it!!!

    @HOF- if we had unlimited supply of money, time and energy then we could also dress like this everyday…..


    ClassyandFabulous March 9, 2011 at 5:51 am

    more outfits please! :D


    PeachesandBlush March 9, 2011 at 5:53 am

    @Classy&fab- i think i should start a fashion blog just for you haina? :p


    Prachi March 9, 2011 at 6:21 am

    Very nice article..Mehak..really enjoyed reading it. Can you suggest some combinations/options for blacks and whites..I am into legal services and its all black and whites for me. Grey is at most what I can stray to..Skirts are more or less..a big no no..I cant wear them to courts..I usually stick to formal shirts, trousers and suits..:-(((


    Chennai Ponnu March 9, 2011 at 6:23 am

    wow nice post ! I prefer skirts anytime coz pants don t suit my body so well and I am always very conscious even in one of those 'no panty line promise' undies :( . Pls do more posts like this.


    Scarlett O'Hara March 9, 2011 at 6:37 am

    Love the skirt!!


    Brenda March 9, 2011 at 6:47 am

    Excellent post. I am more of a skirt person so i love your purple shirt-grey skirt with black belt combination. You missed on mentioning belts in your post!!.. although you did include a very nice picture of one.
    To me.. belts are the utlimate office accessory. Thick or thin they can totally add flavour to a drab office outfit. My favourite combination is a white shirt, grey or black skirt and a deep red belt .


    scribbleofhappygoluckygal June 11, 2012 at 2:42 pm

    I am not so used to the street shopping (may be i was born nd brought up outside India), but for my next holidays, gonna explore Delhi and Mumbai liek hell..!! I need everything( i know i sound greedy..but yes I am greedy:) :):) )


    Aruna July 18, 2012 at 2:06 pm

    A post on makeup for work please :)


    priyanka February 11, 2013 at 1:54 am

    Can you please suggest some options for me? I m slim and 5’3″


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