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To get more insight into the office-wear trends of the season, we spoke with Nancy Dennis, brand and trend director for Sears Canada. She shares her tips for putting together stylish yet professional outfits that stick closely to the season's top trends. With only a few simple steps, you can amp up your look for fall while still abiding by your office dress code.
1. Incorporate accessories
The fastest way to update your wardrobe is to opt for accessories, says Dennis. "If you work in a traditional office setting you can incorporate vintage jewelry, like necklaces or jewelled brooches, into your attire," she begins. "A bold statement necklace is a quick and easy way to update any outfit."
In the spirit of autumn's vintage obsession, Dennis recommends looking to art deco pieces and other strong shapes to give your outfits a punch. "This season it's all about art deco–inspired pieces," she explains. "Look for necklaces that feature geometric shapes to add some elegance and glamour to your outfit."
2. Wear statement blazers
If you have to abide by a dress code at work, Dennis suggests using a blazer or jacket to make an impact. "If you work in a more creative or casual office, try the season's statement blazer," she offers. "Bold plaid patterns, corduroy textures or elbow patch details update this classic piece, and when paired with a slim pant and riding boots they have an equestrian feel that's perfect for the season."
As for outwear, don't be afraid to use your jacket or coat as a way of adding spark to your nine-to-five uniform. "A bright coat is a must-have this fall," says Dennis. "The classic peacoat never goes out of style, and the clean lines make it work with every woman's body type."
On casual days, she recommends pairing a bright peacoat with a denim shirt, slim blue jeans and metallic heels for a sleek and sophisticated yet laid-back vibe.
Page 1 of 2 – Discover two more great ways to update your work wardrobe for fall on page 2. 3. Adopt embellished, textured pumps
Wearing fashionable footwear is the perfect way to stay on trend while remaining workplace appropriate, so Dennis stresses the importance of sporting statement-making shoes.
"Colour-blocked pumps will be everywhere this fall and are a simple way to add an interesting touch to a traditional work outfit," she says. "Try having fun with texture with wedges, stilettos or blocked heels in textures like suede, faux pony or cracked patent."
Many of last year's fall footwear trends are back, says Dennis, such as shoes adorned with various get-noticed fabrics. "In footwear, we're seeing a lot of surface interest instead of embellishment," she explains. So scrap your hardware-heavy shoes and opt for vintage-inspired choices that offer a textural twist instead.
4. Add a pop of colour
Just like spring and summer's vibrant palettes, autumn calls for more than just neutrals. "Add a pop of colour through a great accessory. Try a bright pump or a structured bag in a bold shade to give some energy to a neutral outfit," Dennis suggests. "Cobalt blues and poppy reds are strong colours for the season that have a 1960s mod vibe to them, while warmer hues like caramels, olives and cognacs have that rich fall feeling of the English countryside."
The same goes for jeans on casual days. "Skinny jeans in rich colours like red easily transition into your fall wardrobe," says Dennis. "We're also seeing the evolution of the peplum top in fall-ready colours like deep blue." Combine the two for a look that's office-ready yet easy to take into evening.
Giving your workplace uniform a kick doesn't have to be difficult. By embracing bold fall colours, turning to textured footwear and using statement accessories to add interest to basic outfits, you can make a huge difference in the impact your outfit makes.
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