With the rules for formal dressing taking on a decidedly casual approach, here’s how to master the business-casual look.
If you’re someone who loves the definition a suit lends, but also wants the comfort of a pair of jeans and a threadbare T-shirt, you may want to consider business-casual dressing. It combines smart semi-formal pieces that pass muster in an office environment while providing the comfort of casual wear. Here are five essentials to nail the look.
We aren’t talking about pairs with distressed detailing or outlandish washes. A pair of dark indigo jeans, with a straight fit is a business-casual staple. When teamed with a fine twill, multi-coloured checked or geometric-print shirt, it works as a lovely replacement for your regular trousers, without compromising on comfort.
If your formal dressing preferences lean towards old-school style, transitioning from formal trousers to jeans might seem a bit drastic. Fret not, because chinos make for the perfect in-between option. They look polished and appropriate to wear to a meeting, but are a more breathable and comfortable option for a busy day at work. Opt for colours such as brick red, charcoal and dark teal and wear a pair of corduroys to switch things up every once in a while. Pair them with shirts in muted shades like black, grey or navy to offset the vibrancy of your pants, or a blazer in the same colour.
If you are skipping the suit, a few neutral blazers are a must. They enhance a shirt’s appearance and even make a basic white or black T-shirt look snazzy. Remember that fit matters; after all, you don’t want to look sloppy. If you already own a few solid-coloured ones, opt for tweed blazers or ones with subtle patterns, fitted with a shawl collar. Rich blue, deep red, navy and hunter green are great for winter, as is mustard.
A STYLISH BAG
A briefcase will look terribly out of place with a business-casual outfit, which is why it is worth investing in a messenger bag or a holdall, depending on what you have to carry. Leather bags are timeless, but if you find them too high-maintenance, pick one that combines leather and canvas.