The Chic List: Office wear? Let me be your boss

Fashion columnist and influencer Joanne Hegarty on what to wear to the office.

As more of us head back to the office and face-to-face meetings resume, never forget this: life is too short for boring workwear.

Work outfits often have a bad reputation – stuffy, nerdy, restraining, a drudge uniform we have to don. What absolute rubbish! Workwear can – and should – be chic and exciting.

Team fitted cashmere knits with long pencil skirts. Jumper, COS, skirt, Raey, from Matchesfashion.com, and shoes, Manu Atelier from Brownsfashion.com

Let’s not forget, looking the part goes a long way in helping you crack that big whip under your desk or nailing that deal-clinching presentation. And, in 2021, it’s joyously doable.

The trick to office style is to dress in a clever way that adheres to your employer’s rules and keeps your individuality.

Let’s begin with the suit and the now many attractive silhouettes and options that are available. Trouser suits are always a wise wardrobe addition, even outside the office. I love their effortlessly chic feel and you can get them in a variety of muted tones or brighter shades.

The key to a great trouser suit is all in the shape: a little slouchy and oversized in the jacket, with high-waisted, wider-legged trousers is how to go. Team with a shirt, a gold chunky chain and heels or flats to finish the look.

Don’t be afraid to mix and match shapes, either: try a slightly oversized tailored blazer and fitted trousers with zips at the side (Cos has some great black and khaki ones at the moment), plus a pair of smart flats, loafers or heels. Or try sleek pinstripe trousers.

Alternatively, add texture with wool trousers or a skirt to go with your blazer – try Joseph for some divine options.

As for colours, creams and pastel shades hit the mark in spring, but come winter I’m all about cosy greys, camels and blacks.

Another modern office look is to mix separates. If you have two suits, try swapping them up and wearing with different shirts and tops. This will create the illusion you own more workwear than you do!

This season, longer pencil skirts (check out Raey at Matches Fashion for great choices) are having a moment. Wear them in a stylishly understated way by teaming with a white tee or shirt and statement necklace.

And don’t forget the glorious knitted dress. Ora fitted cashmere knit in a block colour and some favourite earrings.

Change up your shoe options, too– heels, loafers, knee-high and ankle boots all keep life interesting. Accessories such as gold chunky jewellery and bags with chains give extra luxe glow.

And nothing works harder than your coat. Having a few favourites to rotate will help you stand out from the herd every morning.

Follow me on Instagram @thestylistandthewardrobe

Keep it contemporary with an oversized cut. Blazer, £550, Totême, net-a-porter.com

Stay stylish and cosy all work-winter long. Coat, £385, novo-london.co.uk

Add instant personality to your workwear. Earrings, £350, Completed Works, harveynichols.com

Layer this top with a white shirt and gold jewellery. Vest, £38, arket.com

Mix and match separates, such as these pinstripe trousers, with blazers and shirts. Trousers, £79, cosstores.com