Have you ever tried picking out an outfit for work and looking at your collection, nothing seemed interesting enough? Yes yes! I too have been in that position more times than I care to admit. Sometimes it just seems as though all I wear are shirts and trousers, blouses and skirts, neutral toned dress etc. I find that thinking outside the box and building ideas from unconventional starting points often does wonders. Let me explain …..
The Badeau Jumpsuit
I bought this jumpsuit from Topshop for a friend’s birthday dinner. When I first saw it I just knew that I had to get it, it was the perfect evening wear – suitable for dinners, nights out with friends and dare I say going on dates. Seriously it is everything in one and believe you me I wore this outfit to death. Then one day everything in my wardrobe just kind of seemed boring. I woke up in a really good mood and was determined to look a bit ‘extra’, but what could I do? Everything in my work wear collection seemed familiar, I didn’t want familiar. So I decided to look have a look in my going out wardrobe (oh yes I segregate my clothes like that).
So there I was looking through my items and as soon as I saw this jumpsuit, it clicked; different style variations of how I could change this night beauty to an acceptable work wear outfit started coming to me. Truth be told, I might have seen similar styles on Lookbook at some point and so it was just a matter of remembering and getting inspired.
My thought process
The jumpsuit has a tailored cut which gives it that smart look, therefore the only issue is the style. Having excessive shoulder exposure is a massive NO NO in the corporate world. So the question is how do I cover up and still look good doing it? In every brain storming situation, asking the right questions is a starting point to finding a solution. My top two options were to either wear a shirt tucked in or have the shirt semi-buttoned up over the jumpsuit. Whilst the second option is very appealing, the first felt a bit smarter ergo the better option.
Also, it can be very hard creating an outfit without having something to work with. My starting point in this case was this jumpsuit; from there I was able to build an outfit around it. So the next time you are stuck on an idea, find an outfit that you would not normally wear and try to build on it. If it doesn’t work, pick another one. P.S. try doing this the night before work, you do not want to spend the whole morning picking out an outfit.
The White Shirt
Once I realised that all I had to do was cover my shoulders, the idea of a white shirt popped into my head. It definitely had to be a shirt, not a blouse nor a t-shirt. A blouse tends to be loose and flimsy, it lacks that structure that only a button down shirt can provide. And before you ask, yes it had to be a white shirt for me. Sure enough I could have opted for a blue shirt or any other colour but there is just something so eloquent and rich about a white and black. They are the dynamic duo of the corporate world.
Tip: Try opting for a fitted cropped shirt to avoid a rippled chunky effect underneath the jumpsuit
Final Pieces – Coat, Bag and Shoes
Military Style Coat
Having figured out the outfit, it wasn’t that hard to decide which coat and bag to pair with it. I wanted to maintain that clean corporate look and possibly add some muted colours. Nothing screams crisp as a powered shoulder coat with massive lapels. Seriously this coat is an absolute head turner, the military style of the coat that gives it that ‘X- factor’.
So I could have opted for a black handbag, quite frankly I think that was sort of my first choice but where’s the fun in a ‘black handbag’ (unless it is Channel of course). Don’t get me wrong, a black hand bang would have worked nicely with the outfit as a whole but remember we are trying to create a ‘Not Just Another Work Wear’ outfit. Remember the goal is to try and stay away from the more obvious choices. Granted the coat and bag are of similar shades and so one can argue that a green handbag is somewhat obvious but my counter argument will be ‘not as obvious as a black handbag’ 🙂 .
Other than the enormous size of the handbag which is right up my street – Oh yes it is large enough to fit my laptop and other essentials – the silver hardware detailing on the bag really gives it the extra zest which I absolutely.
Ideally, I would have opted for a pair of heels, not wedged heels like the one I have have but something similar to stilettos. Oh it would have looked amazing with this outfit; however I had a lot of walking about to do today so I was not about to punish my feet. Wearing a pair of black wedged heels doesn’t have to be dull, funny enough my main reason for picking out this shoe was because of the gold detailing at the heel. To quote Tesco’s logo ‘every little helps’. 🙂
In conclusion, a good starting point to thinking outside the box when creating new styles is to start with something that you would never dream of wearing and see what ideas come to mind. Outfit inspiration from magazines and fashion Influencers are also great starting points for ideas.