Fashion For Real Women

Summer Business Attire Guidelines

When it's warm outside and thoughts of playing hooky occasionally (okay, frequently!) cross your mind, it's tempting to forego your regular business attire and opt for less casual duds. But unless your company has a summertime casual dress policy, fight the temptation. Even a few days of inappropriate business attire can mar your reputation or that of your company.

Here's what you can do instead:

1. Try A Sheath Suit

Tired of skirts and jackets? No problem! Sheathe suits are a popular alternative and offer surprising versatility. They can be worn together for a professional look, or you can wear the dress separately or pair the jacket with other items. Keep your existing capsules in mind when selecting styles and colors.

Sheath Suit

2. Don't Forget The White

If you can only add one new piece this season, make it a white skirt or pair of pants. Nothing says summer better than white, and it will lighten even the darkest ensemble. Pair it with your navy jacket and you'll be en vogue with this summer's hot nautical trend.

3. Cover The Sleeves

While many will debate this, I believe that sleeveless tops are too casual for most traditional business situations. Wear short or cap sleeves instead. If you feel you must wear sleeveless, pair it with a jacket when in meetings, with customers, or in any situation that requires you to appear authoritative.

4. Lose The Jacket

I know, I know-I've told you time and again that jackets give you an air of authority, and they do. But if you find yourself on a day with no pressing meetings or clients to call upon, try pairing a suit skirt with a whimsical blouse and leave the jacket at home for a change. One of my favorite ensembles is a teal suit skirt with a bold teal and white stripped camp shirt. Crisp and freshly pressed, it screams summer without sacrificing professionalism.

Use a collared blouse to convey authority

5. Put Up Your Hair

One of the hottest trends in Hollywood right now is the upswept 'do. It's elegant, sophisticated, and best of all, cool! If you have medium or long hair, this is one trend you can get behind and look both polished and professional to boot.

Buns, French twists, and knots are all hot now, and will keep you from overheating in sweltering temps. Don't know how to create a French Twist? Check out these step-by-step instructions at HairBoutique .

Whatever you do, remember that regardless of how hot it gets or what others you work with wear, you represent both you and your organization. Don't forego professional business attire to keep cool. Instead, think of cooler, warm-weather alternatives that allow you to dress appropriately without sacrificing your credibility.


Need more help in deciding which business attire is right for you? Grab a copy of Business Wear Magic by author and image consultant Diana Pemberton-Sikes to discover how to increase your income by dressing appropriately for your line of work. You can find it online at Business Wear Magic 

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