August 2nd, 2011
Style Inspiration, What to Wear, Work Wardrobe
Style Inspiration: How to Add a Dash of Sass to a Conservative Work Look
By Claire

D says, “It is almost September and I am headed back to school. I am a Kindergarten teacher and I find myself wearing things during the school year that I am usually not crazy about. There are a few restraints on what I can wear. I am required to wear a white top and a blue bottom three days a week and heels are not an option for me during the school day *God bless those who can!*. Any suggestions that you can give me are greatly appreciated.”
Hey D! Sounds like you don’t have ton to work with. In addition to exploring funky versions of your typical white tops and blue skirts–opting for a pussybow blouse and draped skirt instead of a ho hum button down and pencil–my suggestion would be to work it out with fun accessories. Play up your white top with a jazzy necklace the kids will love, slip on a pair of patterned flats, and even try throwing on a pair of smart readers. Add a bold yet practical bag and consider getting a chic haircut just in time for back to school:

Get a few more options here:

For the days when you don’t have to wear a white top and a blue bottom, mix in a few key shift dresses in classic colors like black and navy, but also in cherry red or deep purple. Shift dresses are easy to slip on, and can be quite versatile if you mix in a potpourri of colorful cardigans, multi-layered chains, or belts.

Get more options here:

As stylist Anthony Williams said, fit is important, so after you go shopping, take items to your local tailor to make sure everything fits beautifully.
Be further inspired by First Lady Michelle Obama, who is pretty much a poster child for conservative chic:

Hope that helps!
Do you guys have anything to add?
*These tips can work for *any* conservative corporate environments. Simply swap out the flats for a hot shoe.

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18 Responses to “Style Inspiration: How to Add a Dash of Sass to a Conservative Work Look”

  1. EntertainmentsFuture says:

    These are some great ideas, they sure helped me…

  2. Aleet says:

    Verrry nice… The whole lot of it.

  3. D says:

    This is awesome! This will definitely help me add some pizzazz to my school wardrobe.
    Thanks Claire :)

  4. Savage says:

    Thankyou Claire!! Alot of great ideas, seeing as how I spend most of my life in a suit.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Love your ideas! Love the patterned flats especially the first set! Can’t wait to rock these looks at my hum drum j.o.b.

  6. classCie says:

    Great suggestions!

  7. Anonymous says:

    Great ideas!

  8. DNICE says:

    This is by far my favorite post- amazing and helpful.

  9. Swear we’re always on the same page! I JUST put that tan Dooney satchel on my wish list. And “conservative” is going to be my new “thing” for the fall/winter. Gotta switch it up!

  10. Alisha says:

    This is a great post! It’s also perfect timing for me because I’m starting a new corporate job next month and currently working on building up my wardrobe. The looks you posted are definitely great examples that conservative doesn’t have to be boring at all.

  11. Empress says:

    I’m jealous…I work in my outfits consists of scrubs..
    This is a nice post…Love the outfits..I have always been a fan of the way Michelle Obama dresses..Love her!

  12. Anonymous says:

    LOVE IT!

  13. binks says:

    Great post Claire, LOVE those flats. I was wondering about this the other day myself since I have to prep for my legal internship. But I totally co-sign a bangin hairstyle or cut some many people underestimate what great hair can do for an outfit!

  14. NIk says:

    WHERE?? Where can I get the brown watch in the main picture?

  15. Amber says:

    Great ideas! I am definitely inspired. Would have been nice to see some more affordable pieces though. The average teacher would not likely be able to afford these pieces.

  16. supplechic says:

    luv’ed ur ideas

  17. tt says:

    BRAVO. fabulous ideas.

  18. BrittanyZ says:

    This article makes me drool….LOL….I live

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