I hear angst over the weird work fashion issues that crop up, more this time of year than ever.
What do I wear to the company gym?
What do I wear to the company lake party?
How to I marry professional and casual at the (a) birthday party, (b) picnic, (c) golf outing, (d) insert your dilemma here.
My advice is always MODEST and SIMPLE.
First of all, I personally will not wear a swimsuit in front of a colleague. I don’t know what your job is. Say, ahem, you’re a life guard. Well you go right ahead. But for my energy-lawyering sensibility, I won’t even foray into a hotel pool while at a company/energy conference. No sirree bob.
So I am not going to advise you on work appropriate swimwear. Don’t think it exists.
However, all the rest of the situations certainly crop up. Let’s take a few examples.
The corporate gym. Yes, by all means, go work out on your lunch hour. However, you don’t want to look like a hootchie if you bump into your client or the CEO. Sorry, but you don’t.
For corporate gyms, I am a huge fan of Athleta. It’s pricey, so shop sales, but I love their stuff. It wears well and some of it is work appropriate. Avoid short shorts and sports bras without a top over it. But otherwise, yoga pants, work out capris, and lightweight tanks are all super functional but also modest.
I love this look of the 2 in 1 capri from Athleta which they’ve partnered with a lightweight tank. Or if you’re jogging this fall (LATE this fall for us Houstonians), this Pose top with some fitted workout bottoms offer comfort and cover. I don’t think of the gym as a place to exhibit your style, so you may be far more adventuresome than I am in this department. Feel free to offer up your recommendations.
For the boss’ lakehouse outing or the company picnic, again think cool, comfortable, functional and modest. I struggle with sundresses at these kinds of events, as CUTE as they are, because of the uncertain sitting situations (e.g., think you on a ground with your dress being blown up) and activities involved. So how to do casual and functional while still looking stylish? Avoid low cut blouses, sheer fabric, and short shorts.
Long shorts with cute tops and flat sandals, or manageable wedges with ankle pants and lightweight blouses are solid options, like these structured shorts or this light striped sweater with fun accessories:
I’m a huge fan of white ankle pants in the summer, but really be careful of your venue because these could get trashed in a hurry if you’re on grass or dirt. A safer option would be summer fun bright ankle pants with a simple tank (and sub out these shoes for interesting flats or sandals).
If you want to try a skirt, just make sure you have bike shorts on underneath (and if you do, you’re braver than me!). If you really want a skirt, a safer bet might be a summerweight maxi skirt like this hippie chic one. Take the pulse for your event. You don’t want to be the dressiest one there or the new employee unable to compete in the sack races!
What say you? How do you select what to wear to those “non office” office activities??