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Casual Dressing For The Corporate Professional

Casual Dressing For The Corporate Professional

We are smack dab in the middle of summer in Chicago and the heat is definitely on (not that we’re complaining). If you’re a corporate professional that has to adhere to some type of “dress code,” getting dressed for the day can be quite a challenge, let alone deciding what to wear that can be considered as casual work attire with such hot temperatures.

Your mind is saying shorts, tank top and some slip on sneakers when your professional/corporate job is mandating button-up and pants, ugh! we’re sweating at just the thought too. With that said I’m putting some looks together to help you dress appropriately for both work and the hot weather.

Pro-tip: When dressing in the summer for your office environment, wear versatile, layer-able pieces. While it is steaming outside, indoors it can feel like Antarctica. A blouse where you can roll the sleeves up or down when you choose or a blazer to wear over a sleeveless top or dress are good examples of versatile pieces in your work wardrobe.

This first look allows you the flexibility to wear all of the pieces together as a suit and then based on how hot or cold you feel you can add or remove the blazer at your leisure.


Shop the look: Blazer – Neiman Marcus or Elizabeth & James  | Top – White House Black Market or Finders Keepers | Pants – Barbara Bui or Preen | Pumps – H&M or Givenchy


Here we have a classic chambray top and a printed pencil skirt. This look takes a little thinking outside of the box by pairing a chambray with this skirt, but trust us, it works. The chambray looks chic while still being professional enough for the office. Style tip: Roll the sleeves up for a more casual look and to keep cool.


Shop the look: Chambray – J. Crew or DL 1961 | Skirt – Nordstrom or Ann Taylor | Bag – Tory Burch or Michael Kors | Pumps – Steve Madden or Jessica Simpson


Bright colors are a great way to stay cool in the summer heat and this bold yellow dress surely fits the bill. If yellow is too loud for your style, try tan or pastel colors to achieve the same look. Style tip: The button up blouse can be optional. Wear it while you are in the office then once you are headed out for happy hour, remove it for a quick change-up!


Shop the look: Dress – Victoria Beckham or NY & Co. | Top – Ann Taylor or Ralph Lauren | Bag – Foley & Corinna or Rochas | Sandals – RAYE Lily or RAYE Libby


Are you fond of t-shirts? If you are this look is perfect for you. You can get away with wearing a simple white tee as shown in this look but be sure it is of high quality and not too sheer. Paired with a maxi skirt you will be comfortable and breezy in the summer heat.

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Shop the look: T-shirt – T by Alexander Wang or LOFT | Skirt – ModLi or Chic Wish | Bag – Michael Kors or Ralph Lauren | Heels – Jimmy Choo or Steve Madden


Black and white is classic and will not go out of style so you can’t go wrong with this look. The great thing about the white pants is that you can pair just about any blouse with them and this style can work for you again and again.


Shop the look: Top – Oscar de la Renta or Michael Kors | Pants – DVF or Ralph Lauren | Bag – Michael Kors or Calvin Klein | Pumps – Marc Fisher or Cole Haan


I hope you find inspiration in these selections to kick your summer work wardrobe into high (and cool) gear. Stay tuned next week for more style tips and outfit inspiration to keep you going. If you need style help or outfit questions, send me an email here.

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