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Office chic, styling yourself for work – Part 4

December 6, 2012

I simply adore Joan from Mad Men, to me she epitomises style, beauty, femininity and confidence all in one fabulous package. If you have ever watched the series, you will note that Joan’s working wardrobe features a limited number of garments (perfectly suited to her colouring), accessorised by her signature pen necklace, well styled hair, effortless make-up and a smile. As was the fashion in the sixties Joan would also arrive wearing coat & gloves and carrying a simple pocketbook, usually adorned by a scarf. This week I want to draw on some of the lessons we can learn from this gorgeous redhead.

We touched on a capsule wardrobe briefly in week 2 of our current series and I’d like to tease that out a little more in this weeks post which will focus on outfit planning. My suggestion is a two week rotation system. Due to my professional role, my working wardrobe is quite distinct from my casual collection. This also creates a nice psychological divide between work and play and arriving home of an evening and taking some time to undress can be a great way to unwind and mentally shift gears. For those of you whose wardrobes may crossover then you will have to make some allowances to the following suggestions.

joan 2

As we are in our Spring/Summer lets work on assessing our capsule for this season. You will need an hour or two or even longer depending on your situation. If you have a spare free standing clothes rack this may be of use otherwise you will need a space to hang your pieces.  Your goal will be to build a two week rotation system for example I work three days per week so I always have six outfits ready to go. Preferably you will not have to wear the same outfit within a two week period. Establish the number of ensembles you will need for two weeks at the office and then methodically go through your wardrobe to build your capsule. You might want to enlist the assistance of a stylish friend or professional. I like to wear dresses, skirts and blouses but others rely more on pant based ensembles. Having a mix of garments that can be mixed and matched is a good idea. I seldom wear pants to work. Only allow garments into your collection that pass the following criteria:

1) Fit you perfectly and enhance your best features whilst softening any sensitive spots;

2) Are in your colour palette;

3) Suit the professional standard you are required to meet;

4) Have matching shoes;

5) Have appropriate foundation garments so as to create a  chic look (we don’t want transparent garments, seam lines, too much cleavage or undergarments showing though).

Once you have your capsule, put those garments in a separate part of your wardrobe so you can go directly there and have everything you need at your fingertips. As you go through the fortnight, follow our guide to wardrobe maintenance from part 3. On the weekend before the two week period ensure all garments in your capsule are clean, pressed and ready to wear. Taking into consideration your week ahead mentally plan which outfits you will wear on which day for that week and then arrange them in order in your closet.

Having your capsule sorted will be one less thing to think about in the morning and will see you arriving at work in fabulous style.

We touched briefly in part 1 on personal grooming but next week we will explore that in some more detail.

Prada 2011

Style Guide:  I had this beautiful dress tailored for me last Spring in Hoi An by the amazing team at A Dong Silk – the brief was inspired by a piece from Prada’s 2011 Fall collection – I had only one photograph from a side angle – the fabric selected was a soft cashmere and the dress is fully lined with bamboo silk! Nude hosiery and understated Robert Robert heels in soft tones of salmon and pink.

Did you know that we offer wardrobe consultations, colour analysis,  personal styling and lifestyle transformation packages incorporating fashion, beauty, health, nutrition, personal development and finance. Contact to find out more about our Miss Très Chic 30 Day Mini-Makeovers or the complete lifestyle package Miss Très Chic 12 Week Transformation.

From → Style, Uncategorized

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