This week’s outfit comes from my dear friend, former roommate, and all around good human Kiley. I’ve known Kiley for many years and I promise you she’s the queen of being artlessly casual and classy at the same time. As a teacher her outfits need to work for her. They need to be comfortable, not easily messed up, and be able to go from lecturing in the classroom, to hosting the afternoon improve class, or attending the evening basketball game.
This outfit is perfect for that. Wear it to that last minute Saturday meeting and still have the professional boss-like power the blazer confers while looking relaxed and at home. This shows you are ready to step up and do your job but that you a relaxed side too. This is the perfect outfit for running errands or just meeting your friends for lunch.
Why it works- It’s easy to see that this outfit looks pulled together. The biggest reason it works and that it’s a favorite of both Kiley and myself is that it makes you feel confident and powerful with minimal effort. It’s an outfit that’s adaptable, one tiny change turns it into something else entirely.
Jeans– Kiley chose a pair of boyfriend cut jeans. They are a semi dark wash with a limited distressed look. The bottoms are cuffed (both of us are super short so…) and I recommend the cuff due to the low heel height. The jeans might be the one change some of you need to make if you want to take this style into your work environment. To me this is the perfect casual Friday outfit if your office offers that and has a more professional dress code. You might swap the style of jean for a darker wash or a skinny cut, but you’ll need to make that decision based on what the guidelines for your dress code say. While changing to a non-jean pant will bring this outfit out of its casual status you can very easily go professional by choosing to wear a cropped slim fit pant.
Knit Striped Top– Oh the comfort and durability of tops like this. If you don’t have at least one in your wardrobe I suggest you get one, even if you only wear it to kick around your house on and drink wine. In this particular outfit the choice of grey and blue is important; the blue ties together the blazer, top, and jeans with a mutual color. You could definitely go for other colors but be careful not to clash or draw too much attention away from the other items in the outfit. The fabric and cut of this top are what keep this outfit looking relaxed and casual, something too fitted or too flashy, a satin blouse for example or fitted button down (which is also really cute with this outfit) would make this outfit a little more on the business side.
The Blazer – First let’s talk about the color, Navy is just a tiny bit less business than black is. It’s more fun and that’s what allows this to remain casual looking. A black blazer can be casual too but it’s always going to have that half in the office appearance. The cut of this blazer is also important, note that it cinches at the waist, giving her a defined, feminine shape. It’s not a boxy, power suite blazer and so it can be fun and flirty. It also doesn’t have buttons which takes away the literal buttoned up office look. Cuffed sleeves show that it’s a working outfit but that she’s not taking herself too seriously.
The Shoes– The red micro heels offer a pop of color, a tiny bit of height, and a good shape. The fact that they are pointed directs the eye in a clean line and keeps the outfit from crossing too far into casual territory allowing this to still be worn in a business setting. Flats would work well if you’re wearing this to lunch or to run errands. If you need to make it a little bit more professional an option would be to wear a slightly higher heel or show with a bit more detailing on it. Stick with a red or nude shoe as a navy might blend too much with the outfit.