What to Wear in Professional Situations


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Image via Clarabelle.

Let’s face it — a white shirt and black pants gets boring. Granted that’s a simple way to look put together professionally, but you can look professional and feel confident with other styles. No matter the budget, work clothing can be fun and boost your wardrobe essentials. The key is to shop for pieces that can translate from the desk in the classroom and office. Stores we love for work-ready Smart Girls are H&M, Old Navy, and Loft. You’re looking for quality and functionality. While browsing the racks, think about how much use you would get out the item by trying it on with similar pieces in the store that you already already own. Two pro tips to keep in mind: 1) Go to the online site before heading to the mall to minimize impulse purchases and maximize your workwear; and 2) shop after New Years, the late summer months, and back-to-school season for the best deals and bigger hauls!

Oxfords and Skinny Pants

Fill your closet with different styles of white or colored button-down tops and you’ll have outfits for a lifetime. The purpose of the blank slate on top is to make getting dressed effortless and draw more attention to your smiling face. Oversized, longer lengths, and printed cuffs pair perfectly with a clean pair of chinos or some high-waisted skimmers. Pack a pair of flats or Keds in your purse to switch out for your heels and you’re good to go.

Shift Dresses and Cardigans

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Image via Kéla’s Kloset

A shift dress that meets your fingertips is one of the simplest pieces that you can wear everywhere. They’re perfect for those days when you want to be comfortable and appropriate. Pairing a solid or striped shift with a pair of glossy flats and soft cardigan makes the statement that you’re ready for the day. If you’re the type to rise and set with the sun with your work, this will be the perfect outfit for you stay comfy all day long.

Sweaters and Skirts

Buying and wearing clothes year round is an easy way to get the most bang for your buck. Who says you can’t wear a sweater in November and June? Not us. Especially if you’re headed to a heavily air conditioned location. For summer months, try a sleeveless or short sleeved sweater and a fun pencil skirt. Rolling up the sleeves to an open stitch sweater and a midi skirt will also go great with pumps — and shows off your personality modestly.

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Grace Williams

Teenaged college graduate. Pizza advocate. Happy dance aficionado. From New England to Central Florida and beyond.