With graduation season slowly coming to an end, I’ve been receiving quite a number of emails from recent grads asking me for help building a work appropriate wardrobe on a student budget. Now that you’ve graduated, and some with jobs (hopefully), dressing the part has become your next challenge. Since you haven’t earned that first real life paycheck, swapping your wardrobe from cool and comfy to office friendly can become a pain. Trust me, I’ve been there and in my years of working in an office setting, I certainly have learned ways to shop for pieces that may not necessarily scream professional but with some fine-tuning can qualify for office friendly.
Take my work look below for instance. The romantic blouse paired with a fitted not tight pencil skirt is professional. Would you believe my if I told you my blouse was under $30? By itself, my WhoWho What Wear Collection by Target top can easily go with a flowy skirt, mini skirt or even jeans. This is a good example of how you can stay on trend, without breaking the bank. Keep an eye on the WWW collection as it’s on-going and pieces are added monthly. The price range is perfect for women who want to be on-trend on a budget.
My Jcrew pencil skirt is more of an investment piece however I always recommend checking out the Jcrew Factory store which is equivalent to the traditional outlet store. Over the years, I’ve managed to stock up on office must-haves like-button down tops, low heeled pumps, camisoles, cardigans and slacks.
Below, I’ve compiled some of those pieces necessary to look put together and professional at least on the outside.
click on images to shop
Many of the items above are good quality for the price. I learned early to not skimp on cheap button down tops as they’re most frequently worn so a better quality fabric is vital. The same applies to a pair of simple black pumps. Go for a low heel (3″ or under) to keep your feet from aching. Always have a pair of flats in your bag or under your desk. A pair of white sneakers will work with just about any outfit and it’s on-trend too. Often times, it makes sense to splurge a little (maybe after your first year of working) on key items that will last you for years to come.
Tell me, was this helpful? What other items would you include into your post college wardrobe?
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