Performancing Metrics

3.25.2011

Casual Friday


My friends and I were recently chatting about casual Friday dress codes and how, while they may be great in theory, they are often poor in execution. Says my girlfriend Elaine, "People in my office seem to think that casual Friday means wearing pajama pants and Garfield tee-shirts". Quelle horreur!

I know that you, Fashionistas, know better than to don your jammies at work. But casual Friday is still a conundrum - how do you walk the fine line between "casual" and "promoted"? Here are a few suggestions...


Unless you work "in fashion", the office is not the best place to exhibit your sartorial daring. Now is not the time for harem pants, turbans or whatever obscure (cool?) trend went stomping down the runway. Start with jeans. Nice jeans in a solid color, preferably dark, with no holes, acid washes or bedazzling of any kind. A skinny, wide-leg or bootcut jean are all safe, but save the boyfriend jeans and your jeggings for the weekend.


Pair them with a blouse in a nice fabric that is appropriately cut for the office.  By "appropriately cut", I mean no cleavage. You don't have to be a nun, just remember you could always get pulled into a meeting with a client or your boss, and you want them listening to your good ideas, not wondering if you are going to bust out of your top.



Add a jacket. These are pretty much de rigueur in an office setting. You don't have to be boring, though! If you'd like to add a little personality to your outfit, choose a blouse or jacket that has a fun element to it. If your blouse is printed, wear a simple jacket. If your jacket is a little funky (mine is bouclé with fur trim) then keep your blouse plain.

 
Closed toed shoes are the most professional, though many offices will allow open-toed shoes or even sandals in the summer. You know your workplace best, so choose your shoes according to office standards. But! If your toes do show, make sure they're fit to be seen. David Foster Wallace wrote that "most really pretty girls have pretty ugly feet." I beg to differ, but I also beg you to get a pedicure before wearing those open-toed pumps!



Have a little fun with your accessories! My gold leaf earrings may be a little too big for a normal day at the office, but they work just fine on casual Friday. Again, keep your senses with you - your chin-length feather and chain earrings should best be kept for after 5:00.


That's it! You are so getting promoted. How about you - do you have any casual Friday tips?


Blouse: Vintage
Jacket: Vintage
Jeans: Gap
Shoes: Target
Earrings: ???
Sunglasses: Michael Kors