We’ve all heard it before…”The clothes make the man.” Well, this statement rings true for both sexes because “The clothes really make the woman” as well. Research suggests that that formal wear significantly changes the thought process by empowering the wearer’s view of the world and their personality. In other words, there’s some punch to the ‘power suit.’ But despite its punch, we are slowly seeing the death of the power suit as we know it due to the fact that a lot of businesses and corporations are tolerating a more relaxed dress code for their employees.
Casual Friday gave birth to business casual which is now the norm for some throughout the week as well, as more and more employees are trading the traditional suit for a more simplified business look of Trouser, button down shirts and a blazer or jacket for men and A-line skirts with tucked in button downs for ladies. A celebration of individuality has broken the constraints of the corporate dress code of stiff dark tailored suits, which now have been reserved for interviews and formal meetings.
I am no fashionista but while expression of self is acceptable in the workplace, the term casual has been taken loosely to the point where people feel that they can wear whatever they want, leading to many casualties of ‘Casual Fridays.’ You can be casual and still be appealingly stylish with a sense of professionalism, don’t kill Casual Friday by showing up to work dressed like you’re headed for a tropical vacation.
know your office culture get a feel for what’s acceptable and what’s not, gain inspiration from your colleagues, take note of what they are wearing during the week and what they are bringing to Casual Friday, don’t look at other department for guidance not because while it may be acceptable for the guy in the mailroom to wear shorts and t-shirt it doesn’t mean it’s acceptable for you. And NO! Don’t follow that one person who decided to start the weekend early. Outfits can be layered up to give a professional look and can easily be stripped down after work for a night out with friends.
Don’t be a casualty of Casual Friday. Remember “you the wearer will not only be projecting a certain image but will also adopting the characteristics of the clothing you’re wearing.” While you may be forgiven for showing up to work in fishnets and a Tutu, it could put a dent in your career.
Fashion in some ways all boils down to common sense and how you as an individual feel about yourself.
**This is my submission to Debbie’s Forgiving Friday Serials, which speaks to Forgiveness and Personal Growth.
~Happy Friday and have a Stylish Weekend
©Etta D. Richards