enowned for being the triple threat office outfit, the white shirt, pencil skirt, and killer heel combo is a classic ensemble that will very rarely let you down. It is true that the best things come in threes; from breakfast to the boardroom, from desk till dinner, these three trusty wardrobe staples will leave you feeling both confident and elegant on any occasion.
As Gianfranco Ferre says, ‘the prim white shirt turns out to have a thousand identities.’ Serving as the blank canvas to your working wardrobe, being a mixture of glamour, poetry, freedom, and impetuousness, the classic white shirt is easily dressed up or dressed down and allows for multiple styling options. Like the tailored pantsuit, this timeless piece has been passed down to working women from the boys, and will forever be a welcomed addition into our closets and working lives.
The white shirt’s perfect pairing is of course the pencil skirt. The Bonnie to its Clyde, the Sherlock to its Watson, the Dolce to its Gabanna; the pencil skirt adds a touch of elegance and poise to the overall look, as it is flattering on all body types. Investing in the perfect pencil skirt is the equivalent to finding the ultimate life partner, being reliable, trustworthy and most important of all, pretty damn cute. Luxury pencil skirts are considered the staple but mid-length designs are a sophisticated alternative, adding a flare of typically feminine style. Finding abstract cuts and textures add subtle changes to this classic piece, making a dramatic difference that allows your personality to shine through your outfit.
Finally, ‘give a girl the right shoes and she can conquer the world.’ Marilyn Monroe was certainly not wrong when she said this as heels have the ultimate responsibility of tying your entire look together. While the shoes may not give you the power to conquer the world, the confidence you exude when you find the right pair will certainly make you feel like you have. You can never go wrong with the perfect pair of heels in the office environment, as long as you follow the rule of thumb: heel height to skirt length. Find a pair that you feel as comfortable in as you do elegant, and you’re be sure to be running the office in no time.
The Layered Look
Shop the look: Aubrey Shirt by Majorelle London | Bonas Black Multi Flower Print Heels by Lucy Choi | Lumen Pearl Earrings by Ora Pearls | Cashmere Jacket by EmmaJane Knight | Cross Stitch Cardigan by EmmaJane Knight | Pencil Skirt by Emma Jane Knight
Pair a cardigan or a well-tailored jacket to your ensemble to add an undoubtedly polished sheen to this classic combination. When layering your white shirt, choose a shirt style which has an interesting stand collar, such as the Aubrey Shirt by Majorelle London, with its ruffle trim collar and cuffs. Both collar and cuffs will be evident, putting a quirky twist on an otherwise classic item. To give the outfit even more character, pair it with the Bonas Black Multi Flower Print Heels by Lucy Choi for the addition of colour and print.
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Style it Sleeveless
Warm weather is always a welcomed part of our lives, both in and outside of the office. However, when the sun is beating down outside but the air conditioning is on full blast, finding appropriate yet comfortable office wear can become a taboo ridden minefield. As one of our summer office style staples, opt for a professional look with a sophisticated, sleeveless version of the classic white shirt. The Ava Blouse, by Majorelle London, is the perfect choice as it will keep you comfortable in times of high heat, but will not compromise your professional attire. Worn with the Yani Lightweight Pencil Skirt and matched with Lucy Choi’s Ruby Pink Snake Heels, the colour clash will create a bold, yet elegant aesthetic.
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Shop the look: Leila Top by Majorelle London | Boucle Pencil Skirt by D. Exterior | Onto Suede Court Shoes by Office | Tribeca Leather Grained Satchel by DKNY | Fenestra Pearl Necklace by House of Demu
Playing with different fabrics and textures – whether that be the shirt, skirt, heels or all three – is a sure fire way to add a modern twist to this classic ensemble. With its textured boucle weave, the Boucle Pencil Skirt, from D. Exterior, ensures effortless sophistication with every wear. The subtle shimmer from the lurex thread will add the perfect amount of glamour to your office outfit. Paired with the Leila Top by Majorelle London, detailed with an exaggerated sleeve, and the Onto Suede Court Heels by Office, you will radiate an instant Italian polish.
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Desk to Dinner
Shop the look: Beattie Print Pencil Skirt by Coast | Mapel Off White Shirt by Reiss | Crepe Cropped Jacket By Jaeger Outlet | The Deal Closer Satchel by She Lion | Dollarbird Blu Notte Heels by Chillerton | Black Drop Pearl Pendant by Ora Pearls
On days when your outfit needs to see you through from a high-powered business meeting to a hot date, add a splash of colour and pattern to your office base. The Beattie Print Pencil Skirt by Coast is an excellent day to night option as it is crafted with a statement wrap design, featuring a modern print and midi length. Pair the skirt with a flowing white blouse, such as the Mapel Long Sleeved Wrap Top by Reiss for its elegant draped, wrap-front design. For an instant addition of understated glamour, switch your work wear blazer for a cropped jacket by Jaeger Outlet and complete your look with a stylish statement bag. The Deal Closer Satchel and Laptop Bag by She Lion will allow you to carry your office essentials throughout the day while at the same time serving as your perfect arm candy for a night out on the town. Opt for a heeled sandal for your feet. The Dollarbird Blu Notte Heels by Chillerton are ideal for going from desk to dance floor, with the midnight blue sparkle and gold zip adding a subtle sense of glamour.
Words by Emily Freund