Monday, January 7, 2013

Monday Moodlifter - Casual Friday

Yes, it is only Monday but today we're already dreaming of Friday, and who isn't really?  H recently started a new job, and one of the many things she loves about this new adventure is that for the first time in her professional career she is in an office that has casual Fridays.  Yes, it seems like such a little thing, but there is something uplifting about knowing that when you wake up Friday morning you can at least put on a comfortable pair of jeans instead of a constricting pencil skirt.  In the winter it's especially nice because it means one less day of black tights during the week.  However, just because it is called "casual Friday" and jeans are allowed, doesn't mean that all professionalism can go out the window.  The jeans must fit well, not too tight or too loose, and no holes!  Similarly your top should be well fitted and office appropriate, a good rule of thumb is to stick with items you would otherwise wear with a skirt or dress pants, or items you would wear for a nice Sunday brunch.  Lastly, you can't forget to think about your shoes.  Flats are great with jeans, and still keep the outfit comfortable.  

So in honor of H's new found need for nice casual clothes, here are five items that will keep you comfortable and professional on your Fridays.

J.Crew Tipi Sweater
A great basic sweater like this in a bright color is an easy way to look pulled together and feel comfortable at the same time.  The crew neck is a classic style and ensures that everything is appropriately covered.

Loft Striped Textured V-Neck Cardigan
Cardigans are already a staple in our work wardrobes, however we tend to wear lighter weight, smaller knit cardigans during the week because of the lighter material of our pencil skirts and dress pants.  For Fridays a heavier, chunkier knit cardigan works perfect with the thicker denim of jeans.  An added bonus is the increased coziness of these sweaters.  Just be sure to wear a camisole or tee underneath with a tailored fit, a high enough neckline, and that is not see thru. 

Ann Taylor Silk Button Down Camp Shirt
If you are bored with sweaters and cardigans, then another idea is to find a casual style shirt, that normally would be too casual for the office, in a rich fabric like silk.  The dressy fabric will elevate the shirt into Friday casual territory.  For something like this camp shirt you should tuck it in and add a belt to keep the look classy and pulled together.

Ann Taylor Faceted Square Button Earrings
Adding some nice, eye catching jewelry is great way to make an otherwise casual outfit shine.  We are not fans of  large drop or chandelier earrings for the workplace, so we prefer something like these statement studs.  These won't get lost in your hair if you wear it down, but they aren't so over the top to be distracting.
Lucky Brand Peppy Flat
We don't typically pair heels with our jeans for the office, instead we prefer a nice flat.  Because we wear basic black flats and heels most of the week, we like to spice things up a little for Friday.  A simple style metallic flat always seems to work.  A light gold goes with almost any color scheme, black, brown, navy, etc., which helps reduce the number of pairs of flats you need to purchase.  The key to making a metallic shoe work, though, is to keep the style of the shoe classic, and to keep the tone of the metallic light.

Do you have casual Fridays at your office?  What's your favorite casual outfit?

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