There was a show called 'Lipstick Jungle' that ran for two seasons in 2008-2009, about three high powered women in NY that I was obsessed with. The women were the embodiment of everything I wanted to be at the time; they had great friendships, they were at the top of their game in their careers and had lust worthy wardrobes to match. The power and confidence that they exuded at work was as much a function of their expertise in their respective careers as it was the executive presence of their appearance.
I put together an outfit that I can imagine any one of them wearing and I explain in detail below why all the elements work for a #GirlBoss in most office environments.
A pencil skirt is flattering on most if not all body types. I love how the structure sucks you in like spanx and how the tapered shape defines the waist. Add a fabric in a bold print and now we're in business. The floral print is feminine without being cloying since the size of the print is not too small.
As you'll notice, the rest of the outfit picks up colors from the print making the skirt the star. If you're not a fan of floral prints, any other type of print like stripes or geometric will work as well. If you hate prints, though I can't imagine a good reason why anyone would, a solid color pencil skirt can work as well but won't have the same punch as this option.
This bold skirt reads someone who is not afraid to stand out, a key element of a #GirlBoss. Make sure the length of the skirt hits at the middle of the knee cap, my preference is for it to cover the knee cap but it definitely should not be any shorter than knee length.
Details, details, details are what make this blouse worthy of a high powered executive. I absolutely love tie neck blouses, they're demure and sexy yet still appropriate for the most conservative office, all at the same time. You've all seen the pictures of the sexy librarian or assistant and nine times out of ten they're wearing a tie neck blouse. Enough said.
You'll notice that the blouse is tailored extremely well. There is enough room in the bust area to keep the girls safely ensconced (there is nothing worse than gaping buttons in the middle of your chest caused by a blouse that's too tight), and then the blouse nips in to define the waist.
The silk fabric is both light weight and breathable which makes it appropriate for summer. This version is also long sleeved which negates the need for a jacket. If you do add a jacket (in the colder seasons perhaps), pick a well-tailored fitted option that defines the waist and shoulders and that is long enough to cover the waist band but not any longer than the top of your butt. After all, you still want to show off your fabulous figure.
Make sure to tuck in the blouse but leave a slight drape around the waist so it doesn't look like you're wearing a strait jacket. You can loop the ties into a bow below the collarbone or leave them as is as shown in the outfit. Either option will look sophisticated. If you're planning on heading out for drinks after work and want a more casual look, show a little cleavage by undoing some buttons (how many is up to you) and letting the ties hang loose.
I love the oversize frame on these sunglasses and the fact that they have no embellishments. They read 'I live the jet-set lifestyle and I love it'. I'd wear these on my commute or while heading out to a lunch meeting. While indoors, I'd swap these out with some oversize eye glass frames for the same effect.
The earrings work with this look for a couple of reasons. First, the design is fairly simple with the black enamel set in gold, yet the tassels draw attention to the face. Second, because the tassels are made from fabric, they're perfect for wearing all day since they're not too heavy, a common issue with drop earrings.
You'll want to make sure that the earrings are not too long. The ideal length would be jaw length i.e. no longer than your chin especially because this look features a high neck blouse. The last thing you want is for the tassels of the earrings to compete with the neckline of the blouse.
This accessory is completely optional for this look but I think it adds some interest to the large expanse of white in the long sleeved blouse. I would use it to anchor the loose tie necks to the blouse, or if you choose to tie a bow, pin it right in the middle of the bow.
Just like the earrings, these rings work because of their streamlined shape and muted color palette. The contrast between the black and gold details add interest while the design is a little bit edgy without being inappropriate for the office.
This bag is everything. The structured shape in the neutral black color is exactly the kind of bag every professional woman should have. But what makes this more special than just another black structured bag is the sheen of the patent leather finish that allows the gold clasp to stand out.
The other great thing about this being a structured bag is that it can stay upright on its own when you set it down. I also love the size of the bag, large enough to hold a tablet and other essentials but not too large that it overwhelms someone with a petite frame.
Closed toe pumps are the best choice for a business casual or professional office. While I know many office environments these days have pretty lax dress codes, that doesn't mean you shouldn't have higher standards for yourself. If you must wear open toe shoes, try to stick to a peep toe style that shoes a hint of your feet but not too much and for goodness sake make sure your feet look immaculate. That means no chips, no overgrown toenails etc. you know the drill.
These pumps are perfect for this look because the closed toe is somewhat conservative but the five inch heel makes them oh so sexy. Of course you don't have to wear a pump with a heel this high but I wouldn't go with anything less than a kitten heel height. Flats will not give the same oomph to this look the way a fabulous pair of statuesque pumps do.
In addition to the style and heel height of the pump, the suede texture adds interest to the outfit since it contrasts with the smoothness of the patent leather bag and the sheen of the silk blouse. The color also goes with the colors in the floral print skirt, adding interest without competing with it. While these puppies are on your feet, I consider them to be the crowning glory of this look. Enjoy being a #GirlBoss.