I would be in complete awe watching Mad Men. Not only were many of the interiors complete goals (I mean, hello season 5-7), the office dress code in the 60’s and 70’s just looked too perfect. But tbh, our Joany often didn’t look very comfortable. Fast forward fifty years, is the office dress code still relevant?
It took me a while to pay attention to dress codes. I couldn’t really give a fuck when I started my first job after graduating. I was working a desk job at an architecture firm and I hated being there 75% of the time so if I was going to be miserable, I at least wanted to be comfortable. I’d go to work in my pj’s if that was socially acceptable.
But when I started working at a design furniture showroom and needed to interact with customers, I quickly realised that dressing for the job made it more enjoyable. I felt more confident and people took me more seriously. I guess you can call it power dressing, in a way.
And yes, dressing myself to make me look older helped. And yes, there’s something sexist about that, too. I still feel like I have to dress older and more serious, even in my current job. People have taken me for the intern or the secretary before. With the risk of sounding like a total asshole, this really pisses off my inner feminist. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with any of these jobs, but it’s not what I do. As far as I know, the guy I replaced was never taken for the intern or the secretary.
I think I finally found a balance between the office dress code and still feeling like myself. I don’t like to take myself too seriously, but I take my job seriously and I want that to be reflected to my clients. So yes, there are things I own that I just can not wear to work (I’m sorry Gremlins T-shirt) – but I’m coming to terms about it. I like clothing that looks like it’s office proof – but is secretly very comfy. Y’know, office dress code but with 25% wiggle room for nonchalance.
I bought these pants ages ago on a little trip to Antwerp, but I didn’t wear them for the first few weeks. Back home, I wasn’t too sure about the colour and fit – and I felt a bit guilty because even though they’re made from the sustainable fabric lyocell, the brand I bought it from (Weekday) isn’t exactly a fair fashion brand. Forward a few months, and I absolutely love wearing these pants now. I like pairing it with a tied shirt and some open sandals, or a tucked in tee and a pair of sneakers. These pants are not in stock anymore, but I found very similar ones at Armed Angels. I also found out the ‘Gwen’ sandals from Matt & Nat (that were featured on my latest wishlist) were on sale, so I sort of had to buy them, lol. I’m not going to lie, they were quite uncomfy the first few wears, but they’re okay now. Comfortable enough for the office.
shirt – second hand
pants – Weekday
sandals – Matt & Nat
I do have to say I’m very happy about working in a place where there’s no strict dress code. Nothing was ever said or implied about it and I doubt anyone would even say something if I did wear that Gremlins shirt to work one day.
I’m also in no way saying you can’t wear a Gremlins shirt to the office. It’s really all up to you and what you feel comfortable with (and what you can get away with – lol). You do you, gurl.
But this job does influence how I shop these days. Shopping less and going for more sustainable choices means thinking twice about investing in a piece of clothing, so I try and make sure it’s also office proof. I need my clothing to be flexible and versatile enough for me to wear them for work, and for play. I’ve worn the same pants with a tucked in white tee and sneakers. Or with a black knotted top and some slippers. Not office proof, but deffo hot weather proof for after work.
Do you keep your job in mind while shopping for new clothing?