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  • Girl Boss: A Guide to Business Casual Fashion

    January 18, 2019 8 min read 1 Comment

    With the new year in full swing, it's a great time to revamp your work attire! However, it can be difficult to define business casual for women, as different companies have different dress codes. When we talk about business casual fashion, we are talking about clothing that can be worn in most offices and that looks both stylish and professional. Some women have strict dress codes at their work environments, while others have more creative freedom with their outfit choices. Whether you're starting a new job or just looking to add some class to your daily style, business casual fashion will keep you looking and feeling like a boss babe! This guide will show you how you can build the perfect workplace wardrobe without sacrificing comfort or personal style.

    Let's Start with the Basics

    Black Blazer and Dress Pants

    Every working girl should invest in a black blazer and a pair of black dress pants. Not only do these pieces serve as closet staples, but they also make it easier to experiment with unique colors and patterns! A nice pair of black slacks will pair perfectly with everything from a white turtleneck to a fuchsia blouse, and you can throw a black blazer over anything and still look like a boss! When you choose bolder prints, simply pair them with your go-to blazer and pair of slacks!

    White and Navy Blouses

    Nothing says "business casual" better than a white blouse. It's a smart idea to add a few white blouses to your closet. Don't be afraid to experiment with various fabrics and silhouettes! Find a white blouse with dramatic sleeves and a ruffle collar for an unforgettable look. Another excellent color for business casual blouses is navy blue. This deep blue color can serve as either a pop of color or as a neutral, depending on how you style it!

    Solid Color Pencil Skirts

    Pencil skirts are a must-have in every business casual wardrobe. These fitted midi skirts create a classic, professional look that will pull together any outfit. Having two or three solid color pencil skirts will make it easier to create office-appropriate looks. We recommend choosing one black and one colorful pencil skirt. Black pencil skirts are so timeless, and a colorful pencil skirt is perfect for wearing a bold color in a conservative way.

    Midi and Knee Length Dresses

    There's nothing better than finding the perfect dress that you can wear to work, especially when it's cute enough to wear outside of the office too! Here at Bella Ella Boutique, we have lots of gorgeous dresses that you can add to your business casual wardrobe! Midi is the standard length for work dresses, but knee length is also appropriate. Our Focus On Me Patterned Midi Dress is perfect with its midi length, 3/4 sleeves, and trendy color. If you're looking for the perfect knee-length dress we recommend our Chance to Shine Knee-Length Dress!

    Now It's Time to Show Off your Unique Style


    We are obsessed with the jumpsuit trend, and the right jumpsuit can look amazing and professional at the office! Be sure to choose a jumpsuit with sleeves and high-quality material. Have a sleeveless jumpsuit that you want to wear to work? Simply wear a turtleneck top underneath and you're ready to go! Striped patterns are flattering and fashionable! Plaid is another one of our favorites for business casual fashion.

    Bold Dresses

    Sometimes, a girl just needs to express herself in vivid color! We love finding office-friendly dresses in bold and bright hues. Whether you want to create an eye-catching outfit or have a work party coming up, why not choose a vibrant color for your next business casual dress? We love the fun and feminine style of our New Look Blue Multi Striped Dress! The ruffle sleeves and v-neckline add the cutest finishing touches! If you're looking for something red hot, we recommend our Pay Attention Red Midi Dress!

    Patterned Pants

    Every girl needs a pair of patterned pants in her business casual wardrobe! Whether you prefer polka dots, plaid, or striped patterns, we have something for you here at Bella Ella Boutique! By pairing a cute pair of patterned pants with a plain blouse and sensible heels, iconic office outfits can be easily created. Patterned pants can also be a great way to incorporate more color into your ensemble.

    Floral Dresses

    Floral dresses are easily one of the most popular styles we offer here at Bella Ella Boutique. Many women are unsure if their favorite floral dresses are appropriate for the office. We definitely think so! It's important to choose dresses with floral prints that aren't too busy, and one of the easiest ways to do this is to find a floral dress with a smaller floral print. We love the soft and feminine style of floral dresses!

    Trendy Skirts

    While we love pencil skirts, there are so many other skirt styles that are office-appropriate! We have been loving all of the fun new trends for skirts these past few months. With its trendy abstract polka dot pattern our Crazy About You Black Midi Skirt is everything you could ever want in a skirt! If you're looking for something a little fancier, we recommend our Playing Dress Up Pink Knee-Length Skirt. It has pleated details and gorgeous material! Pair either of these skirts with a coordinating blouse and heels for the perfect outfit!

    Styling Tips

    Combining Patterns

    Mixing and matching different patterns and prints has been all the rage in street style lately, so why not bring this trend into the workplace? Combining patterns isn't as complicated as it sounds, we promise! The first step is to find some classic prints. Some examples of these would include leopard print, basic stripes, houndstooth, polka dots, and grid plaid. Next, add some more unique prints like florals, plaids, paisleys, abstracts, etc. Some of the basic tips for creating cohesive looks is combining similar colors, using different sizes of prints, or sticking to monochromatic, black and white prints. Some of our favorite combinations are polka dots with plaid, leopard prints with stripes, and florals with linear prints. For more tips, check out our blog post on how to mix patterns like a fashion blogger!

    Our model, Madelyn, is wearing our Inner Beauty Mustard Floral Blouse with our Life Imitates Art Grid Palazzo Pants. This combination is definitely one of our favorites! The floral print and windowpane plaid print complement each other so well, and the mustard yellow serves as a pop of color from the black pants, shoes, and choker. The unique silhouette and modern style make this business casual outfit so artsy!

    Tie-Front Tops

    Tie-Front Tops have been so popular lately, and we've had many customers ask us if these cute tops are appropriate for the office. Our answer is yes, of course! The key is to choose a top that fits you just right. If your tie-front top fits too tight or too baggy, it won't look as professional. However, once you've found the perfect tie-front top, it's so much fun to experiment with business casual looks! One of our favorite ways to style a tie front top is with a plain flare skirt with a high waist. If you want a bolder look, try pairing a colorful, patterned tie-front top with a pair of skinny black slacks and then stack on the jewelry!

    Our model, Rachel, is wearing our Go-Getter Beige Top with our Free Falling Navy Pleated Skirt and the cutest floral loafers. The frilly and feminine top is perfectly balanced by the sleek and classic flare skirt, and we think the floral loafers tie the whole outfit together!

    Yes, You Can Wear Jeans

    More and more companies are allowing (and even encouraging!) their employees to wear denim jeans, and we couldn't be happier! One widely spread misconception about jeans is that they can't be worn in business casual outfits. We are here to tell you that not only can you wear jeans, but you can look like professional while doing so! Choose dark wash jeans with no holes or distressing and pair them with a muted color blouse, black blazer, and high heels. During the summer, jeans can be styled with a lightweight white blazer and heeled sandals. We recommend wearing dressier pieces with your jeans to avoid a look that's too casual. Another way to class up your jeans is to cuff them and accessorize with some classy hoop earrings or a gold watch.

    Our model, Madelyn, is wearing our Made for This Dark Wash Blue KanCan Skinny Jeans! We love how these jeans look with a simple black turtle neck. It's the perfect classy outfit for a day at the office!

    Two Neutrals + One Color

    There's something so chic about business casual outfits with a single pop of color! To achieve this look, simply combine two neutral pieces with one colorful accent piece. For an elevated ensemble, choose a neutral-colored pattern or print for one of your base pieces. You could also use darker colors like forest green and navy blue as neutrals for a more colorful look. There are endless styles you could create following this simple color trick! Whether you combine black, gray, and purple or beige, white, and mustard yellow, this look will make you stand out!

    Our model, Janessa, is wearing our Influential Black Houndstooth Pants with a basic black top and our Tales to Tell Burgundy Cardigan. The silver jewelry and black strappy heels really tie this look together, and the burgundy and black plaid combo make the perfect winter outfit for the office or even a night out!

    You Got This, Girl!

    Remember, no matter what you wear, you deserve to be treated with respect at work! A true girl boss recognizes her own worth and knows that she doesn't need to wear the perfect outfit every day in order to be a good employee. That being said, it can be fun to dress up for work, and sometimes it's required.

    We hope this guide gave you some new ideas for office-appropriate outfits. By investing in some staple pieces and then choosing unique accent pieces, it's easy to create the perfect business casual wardrobe for you!  

    For more inspiration and the latest, fashion-forward business casual styles, check out our new Girl Boss collection, only at Bella Ella Boutique


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    1 Response

    Madison White
    Madison White

    June 08, 2020

    I’ve been looking for business outfit inspiration and this helped me with ideas!

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