THE thorny subject of what to wear for work goes into overdrive about now.
During the Winter, we manage relatively well – whether the office dresscode is “smart” or just “smart casual”. Men generally get the best deal with variations on suits, jackets and trousers and women tend to have staple dark dresses, skirts, trousers and jackets that mix and match relatively well with a Next top.
Summer and the occasionally British warm weather throw a spanner in works when it comes to what to put on for the working day. And, according to a new survey by clothing company Banana Moon, we often get it wrong.
They asked 2,000 Brits about workwear and found that just under 25 per cent had been called into their manager’s office for “a chat” about their outfits. Men were the worst offenders, usually about shorts and sandals (don’t bother, just never wear them) and women were told off for wearing inappropriate outfits like low-cut tops or tight leggings.
I suppose we need to reassess a couple of things: where we work, what we do, what our colleagues expect and, finally but probably the most important, what we actually look like.
Basically, colleagues don’t need to see too much flesh. While fine for clubbing, festivals or sunning in the back garden, flimsy dresses and cropped tops affect productivity (yours and theirs) and just don’t look right.
Similarly, muscle vests and shorts of any kind are a no-no for men unless Dress Down Friday takes a very casual turn – or you work in IT. Certain offices are, by their very nature very relaxed about clothes particularly creative industries.
However, most public-facing jobs demand a rather more formal type of dress-code or may even have their own uniform, usually hated by those who wear it. These do, though, look the part and send out the right corporate message, both in the office and to clients.
I suppose that’s it, really. Our workwear reflects our commitment to our job. Mind you, as I’m writing this still in my pyjamas and from my home-office, who am I to judge?