BlueSuitGirl emailed me today. She's a recent MBA grad who just left her publishing company business manager job for the Big Consulting Firm. She's in her "training" (read: brainwashing) phase, but they're pretty much letting her work at home until she's put on a project. Here's her dilemma:
HELP.....I need some advice from my fashionable friend, DC Celine..... I have a work happy hour to go to tonight....what to wear? I've never met these people before, from what I understand, the company is fairly conservative, I want to make a statement but not over the top. I don't think jeans are appropriate, although you can always dress them up and look hot, not going to wear a suit, so I need something in between. And i don't want to look as if I've actually gotten dressed up fpr the event....remember, I've been hanging out at home all day!
I could feel sorry for you that you're at home all day, but I won't. Instead, I'll help you with your dilemma (sorry, just couldn't help getting that in).
First thing that came to mind: Kate Hepburn. Always savvy, always stylish. Cuffed slacks, like the Trina Turk pair above left, or for a modern version, the now ubiquitous suit shorts (see the Banana pair on sale, left). My personal preference is gentle brown or rusty tweeds, as they can be so elegant, but I'll leave the color up to you. Put on a cowl neck sweater (the Isaac one, sleeveless, would do nicely for a day that keeps insisting we aren't one day away from December), and use the sophisticated drape to your advantage.
Or, if you don't want to do the pants/shorts thing, go Wrap. It's my new favorite thing, ever since I put on my new H&M version this morning, and H raved all the way out the door. The Target (yup!) $22 version sports sassy patterns, and you can pick it up today in your busy schedule (wink wink). If you don't feel like baring the boobs, like most of the wraps end up doing, throw a little coordinating cami on underneath, or find a brooch in your jewelry box that'll let you pin the V-neck shut a little.
Then, of course, report in and tell us what you end up with, and how your new colleagues react to it.