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Local Living Magazine

Fall Fashion for the Professional Woman

What does the term “dressing for success” really mean in today’s professional work setting? And we can all agree that this term has a different meaning for women versus men. Women want to be stylish but not stylized, which subtle difference but an important one.

We have office casual, meeting days, meeting with clients... and the list goes on and on. It can be an overwhelming process to feel professional, polished, and fashionable with limited time to get dressed in the morning.

Who has time to spend an hour getting ready for work? I know I don’t, but that doesn’t mean I can’t look professional with minimal effort.

The key is to keep it simple and embrace your natural style with small adjustments based on the workday.

Here are few tips on how to streamline your look for work and still be stylish:

1) Invest in key pieces that fit well but aren’t too trendy. Be sure to stick to neutral colors. You can always add a printed blouse or a pop of color with a bag, shoe, or scarf. Jewelry should be on trend but only one key piece at a time, please!

2) The typical work environment does not require a suit for women but do invest in matching pieces from one designer. The idea is that you can build and add as needed to your core pieces and the color, fabric and design aesthetic will be seamless.

3) Dresses are key pieces for any woman despite the sea- son, sleeveless is the best option as you can layer a sweater or jacket to dress up or down based on the day.

Additionally, sleeveless dresses can also be styled to ap- pear dressier for an after work event or cocktail party.

4) Season less fabrics are a great investment as you do not have to change your closet and just add accessories or shoes to make appropriate for the time of year.

5) Plan your outfits in advance to save time during the morning routine. Create a list of events and use as a guide for your wardrobe for the week. If that Monday meeting re- quires a more polished look, you will want to wear your suit and classic jewelry. But if Wednesday’s office day is more casual and followed by a low-key evening work event, wear a skirt and blouse. (But be sure to bring a fun pair of colorful shoes and trendy jewelry to spice up your style for post 5 pm!) Ultimately the key to looking professional in the work- place is keeping your style simple and having one bolder item that makes you feel stylish. Always think: fashionable not fussy!

By:  Jillian Dunn has over 25 years in the fashion industry from managing local boutiques to corporate based retail businesses. She is currently managing a luxury re-sale boutique called Revivals in Narberth, PA. Her skills include personal shopping and styling, hosting charity based shipping events and closet and home organizing. She can be contacted at [email protected]