I’m in Austin today at, drumroll please… a work conference!
As I started packing Tuesday night for a few days away from home I thought what a fashion challenge the work conference can be.
Arguably, at least for me, it’s slightly less formal than work so no suits needed. Additionally, conference spaces are always (regardless of the season) freezing cold. However, it’s 100 degrees in Texas in August, and I’d be heading outside straight from conferences to post conference receptions/dinners. Finally, I like to fashionable and that always means heels but frequently there’s a fair amount of walking around a mega hotel or center at a conference.
So how do you dress for the work conference? Keep a few things in mind. First, you’ll be meeting new people that could build your network so always look professional. No skin tight dresses, ripped jeans, or plunging necklines. Second, you aren’t at work so have a little fun and embrace your sense of fashion. Maybe that means cool wedges or bright colors or a big necklace. Conferences can allow you to remain professional but have more fun with your “work” clothes.
What did I pack? Well, as you know, I’ve recently embraced the ankle pant, so I packed a pair of black ankle pants in a not-terribly-wrinkly fabric to pair with a neutral shell and new bright red long modern blazer. I packed high heels to wear during the day during the lectures and wedges to transition to for post-conference events.
I stick with the same base color scheme which means my jewelry, shoes, and tops are interchangeable, so I also packed a black shift dress and black pair of pants along with two simple (and easy to pack) blazers with fun jewelry – new vintage dangling earrings I picked up on eBay and some old chunky necklaces from years ago at Ann Taylor. I also wore a pair of dark denim jeans into Austin for pre-conference dinners because it gave me the option of changing into them for post-conference dinners as Austin is an incredibly casual town.
The red blazer is from Nordstrom’s and I picked it up on sale:
Black ankle pants you can pick up anywhere (see my earlier post).
As for accessories, pick your price point and your style and you can find options anywhere – from Charming Charlie’s to every department store to Kendra Scott. I think this necklace is interesting and Ann Taylor is having their 40% off friends and family sale:
And then find a pair of funky wedges that are comfy for all the walking but also super cute – these are on sale at Banana Republic:
How about you? What do you pack when attending conferences?