Week of requests: office capsule wardrobe

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“What about a post sharing the  pieces you would absolutely have to have if you were still sometimes going to work?” asks a reader named Trinatinglum (not a typo). My current office is located approximately twenty steps from my bed, so it’s been a long time since I’ve had to think about appropriate work attire. And I always worked in offices that were pretty casual (at least in the sartorial respect) and I wore jeans just as often as I could get away with, which I pretty much always could as long as I was also wearing a sufficiently sharp blazer.

I also like blazer-adjacent jackets like this one from Iro, which is a little Chanel and a little rock & roll, and which comes in several colors. It’s excellent for those who think they look awful in blazers.

I’d also likely invest in a few nice drapey-but-polished blouses like this one. Here’s a similar-but-cheaper option.

I think this looks like it’d be pretty versatile too.

And because I’m not entirely allergic to color, I might acquire something like this well-priced top.

I’d also definitely pick up a pair of skinny cigarette pants, because they look so polished, and you can wear them with just about anything. Here’s a cute and cheaper pair.

To wear with those pants and jeans, I’d go for Rachel Comey’s now-classic Mars bootie. Their heel is high enough to be flattering, but low enough to be walkable.

 

On most days back when I worked in an office, I wore dresses, because that was the easiest, most one-step thing to do. I did then and still now prefer an interesting print like this one.

This looks so comfortable—I am always a sucker for a drop waist—and I dig the tonal print.

If I ever were to find myself in an office again, it would likely be at a job that didn’t have the best perk of my last one—a clothing allowance—so the vast majority of my shopping for Zero+Maria Cornejo dresses would happen on The Real Real. Much of the ZMC I’ve acquired lately comes from there, and I’ve picked up some choice items. I would wear the hell out of this unstoppable print were it available in my size. I used to go for big prints like this not infrequently back in the day, but I’d tone them down with tights, boots, and a dark cardigan of some kind.

I almost always wore dark knee-high boots with my dresses, especially this time of year (and not, obviously, in summer). I like this slightly clunkier, stacked wood heel number, too.

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12 Thoughts on Week of requests: office capsule wardrobe
    Eloise
    8 Mar 2019
    12:39pm

    Damn, someone beat me to that ZMC dress….gonna check out some of the others on there, though.

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    Kathi
    8 Mar 2019
    12:45pm

    Great post, love the dresses.

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    Viajera
    8 Mar 2019
    1:07pm

    That snake-y print is quite fetching. And I always do love a knee high boot (well really almost all boots). The Vince shirt is lovely. I don’t think I’ve even even tried on a band collar shirt. What a sheltered life I’ve led. Just to be cranky, I can’t imagine paying $300 for a polyester shirt. A jacket, maaaaaybe.

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    cyadoc
    8 Mar 2019
    4:05pm

    Recently purchased the Mars bootie after wanting them for so long. Love them! A classic as you called it!

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    8 Mar 2019
    4:12pm

    Recently purchased those Mars booties after wanting them so long and seeing them recommended by you. Love them! A classic as you say.

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    Trina Tinglum
    8 Mar 2019
    11:20am

    Thank you! You just made my day/week/month. Thank you for offering so many suggestions. I will study, learn, and buy. 🙂 Trina Tinglum

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    Mary
    8 Mar 2019
    11:24am

    Love the IRO blazer! I think I’d like to wear it out to dinner with jeans.

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    m r
    8 Mar 2019
    11:31am

    i too work just a few feet from my bed. (i have to go further for my morning coffee) so I really miss dressing for work. those booties look great.

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    Leigh Anne
    8 Mar 2019
    11:33am

    I love “blazer adjacent” jackets! Would love to see a round up of those as well.

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    Robyn
    9 Mar 2019
    6:15am

    Great suggestions, but I’m a resource teacher, and while some of these would be practical for the classroom, most wouldn’t. (Especially the price tags) I would love to see more casual sans the jeans outfits, we can’t wear jeans. Also a jean post. With the turn away from skinny jeans I’m at a loss as to what kind of jeans to wear. I’m finding other shapes of jeans are hard to style.

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    Kim France
    9 Mar 2019
    5:23pm

    Hi Robyn—I can’t imagine these pieces make sense for a teacher. The request, specifically, was to see items I might choose if I worked in an office again.

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      MarieP
      11 Mar 2019
      10:07am

      I work with special needs kids in the public schools (SLP) and I’d wear every piece on your list, especially the blazer, little jacket, ankle boots, cropped pants, and that grey dress. I admit I’m usually more dressed-up than my colleagues but I like nice clothes!

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Kim France

I was born in Houston, Texas in 1964 and have lived in New York City since 1988. I had a long career in magazines, working at Sassy, Elle, New York, and Spin, and in 2000, I founded Lucky magazine, which I edited for ten years.

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