While Casual Fridays and Business Casual attire are more commonplace and some offices are moving toward even more casual attire, I have always struggled with this. In my opinion, there are fewer good options for women in the the "casual dress" space. Take Business Casual as an example. A man can wear khakis and a golf shirt and look completely acceptable by tucking the shirt and wearing nice shoes and a belt. For many women, however (and I am definitely one of these), this look is not flattering at all. I don't find khakis and golf shirt to be flattering or feminine on most women.
I continually find myself searching for examples of appropriate dress for women in the casual workplace. My father taught me to always dress "a click above". I don't really know the origin of that expression, but I knew the meaning -- to dress for success by always dressing just a little better than you would be expected to dress.
As I conducted my never ending search for women dressing for success in a corporate environment, I ran across this http://under30ceo.com/4-ways-dress-success-increasingly-casual-workplace/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Under30CEOAll+%28Under30CEO%29
I thought this advice was helpful.
1. Dress like your superiors, not your peers. Similar advice from my father was "dress for the job you want, not the job you have." I pay close attention to women executives in my office and try to learn from them.
2. Stay clean and crisp, even when casual. As much as I dislike ironing, I agree that it helps you look neater. Hair, nails, makeup and shoes should also be neat and clean.
3. Just because you can doesn't mean you should. This just happens to be one of my favorite sayings. It applies to more than just dress, but it is good advice for deciding what to wear.
4. Wear something that will get people talking. I agree with this if it is something tasteful. I would not agree if you are wearing something inappropriate or tasteless.
So what is your secret for "dressing for success" in a more casual environment?