What should I wear to work?

 Posted on October 25, 2016 by    Category: Fashion, General, Styling      Tags:

What should I wear to work?  

This is a question I am often asked by my clients, as it seems the lines have been blurred somewhat when it comes to business attire. The traditional way of conducting business i.e. “face to face” is changing and with the rapid growth in technology, the way we now communicate is very different.

As a result, some businesses have chosen to relax the dress code, whilst others remain the same.  This has caused confusion and problems for many staff and employers and unless the company has an official “Dress Code”, many are left wondering, “What should I wear to work”?

“Cracking Office Dress Codes” is an infographic (featured above) created by T.M.Lewin (a British heritage brand with expertise in business wear and dressing smart www.tmlewin.co.uk). It was designed to visually help professionals decide what to wear to work and I am very grateful to their London based Visual Consultant, who has shared this resource with me to use in my blog.  I would also like to add a few more helpful tips;


  • Match your leather belt to your shoe colour (Black or Brown)
  • Add a White pocket square for Business Formal attire
  • Business Professional and Business Casual, choose a colour from your tie and pick that up in your pocket square


  • Wear classic style jewellery in Gold, Silver or Pearls for Business Formal and Business Professional
  • A tailored shift dress with a matching jacket in a neutral colour, is a great option in lieu of a pant/skirt suit for Business Professional
  • Team the shift dress with a lovely silk scarf or elegant accessories, to soften the look and you are ready for Business Casual

As an Image Consultant, I advise to always present the best version of yourself, in both your personal and professional life.  Dressing appropriately for the environment and the occasion, shows respect for oneself and those with whom you are meeting or working alongside.  Statistics show, that those who dress well, attract attention for the right reasons and are more likely to be promoted over those who don’t put effort into their appearance.

What we wear has a huge impact on how we feel about ourselves and hence, the way we perform.  To test this theory, Professor Adam Galinsky of (Northwestern’s Kellog School of Management in the US), conducted an interesting experiment and as a result of his findings, coined a new phrase, which you may read about here… “Enclothed Cognition“.

Many factors contribute to the way we dress, climate, country, culture, and industry, to name a few. Therefore, I recommend that you always check with your employer, to ensure that you are following the preferred dress code of their business.  If in doubt, refer back to this article and if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me directly: susie@biddyandjean.com.au

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