Summer Work-Wear on a Budget

Since joining the real world after finishing my studies and finding that jobs require a certain level of maturity and sensibility which I at first, lacked – I think a couple of years ago I could have done with reading a blog telling me how to dress chic, appropriate and wallet-friendly quite urgently. Now, I didn’t have that so have thus gone through the ups and down of creating a work wardrobe meaning now I can point someone in the right direction – much like I needed back then.

I find buying clothes for work reallllllly difficult sometimes because I really hate spending money on clothes by which I sit at a computer all day wearing. Having said that, no one wants to look crap at work. In terms of the face and hair sitchu – I never really try too hard because I like to let my face breathe during the week and hair gets put in the ‘can’t be bothered’ category at 7am so clothes are the only way that I can salvage the idea that I am a woman who does care about her appearance.

When it comes to work-wear, I’d easily say that 90% of it is sale finds. This is great in my mind because it’s cheaper, work-wear doesn’t have as strict ‘seasons’ so it is more versatile and its cheaper (have I said that?). You have also got to take into consideration your dress-code at work – is it formal? Is it relaxed? Are jeans acceptable? Where I work it is fairly formal and jeans are a no – much to my disappoint because I live in them. Buying work-wear is also a task which isn’t amazing fun so I usually only stick to the following places as they have the best selection: Zara, Mango and ASOS.

My work wardrobe screams versatility because I know any dress in there can be paired with 3 or more pairs of shoes/ can be worn with any coat or be styled for every season. That’s what I’ll try to explain how to do below:


I think culottes in the summer scream class. You can pair them with flats, heels or sandals and you’re going to look not only classy but be cool in the sweaty office environment. I love pairing my culottes with eitherASOS Culottes Pink.PNGan open-toed heeled sandal and a simple tee – it’s a perfect mix between casual anZara Culottesd formal. Culottes, on the whole, aren’t too pricey. I picked mine up in Zara in Paris for €15 (£13.00) whilst on holiday but prices are pretty similar in the UK too. Mine are black with a paper-bag waist and a tie front so they go with nearly everything. A must-have staple for the summer months! These blush rose ones from ASOS are to-die-for and are the perfect shape. They’ll add a great pop of colour to your wardrobe and if styled with other neutral tones can look so chic and they’re only £25 which isn’t too bad!

Black Sandals

RAID HeelsZara HeelsThe classic black sandal (a shoe-drobe must, as we talked about here), is perfect for work. In my job, I stare at a screen all day so I’m rarely on my feet – meaning I can wear the most inappropriate shoes I desire. However, I’m sure this isn’t the case for most other people BUT this doesn’t mean you cant too benefit from the classic black sandal. High or low, stiletto or block – you’ll be looking gorgeous in a black sandal with nearly any outfit. I think a black, chunky sandal is best as they will thin your foot and leg visually, meaning it’s going to go perfectly with a tapered trouser or bare leg. Price wise, sandals can vary but it’s so easy to find a good quality pair on a budget, my current faves are from Public Desire and I got them in the sale for £14.99 (sold out now though) but these from Zara (pictured above) are only £25.99 and with consideration that you can style them with every outfit it’s a small price to pay.

Cigarette Trousers

Despite myASOS Trouser efforts at the gym to get the perfect figure, I’m not the most curvy-in-the-right-places kind of girl. So due to this, I’m all for clothes enhancing curves – the cigarette trouser is perfect for this. Synching you in at the waist but tapering your leg, these trousers can look great for any occasion and in particular, work. Try and get ones that finish before your ankle as I have brought ones which are too long in the past and I’ve looked frumpy. Whether it be black, white, tan or colourful (if you work in a relaxed environment) – these trousers will jazz up your work-wear. I find that every pair of tapered trousers I’ve bought have always been under £30 and from ASOS – I probably need to branch out and try other brands but I find ASOS’s sizing so true to size and they’ve fit me perfectly so far. THESE are a steal – check them out.

White Blouse

I love white blouses because they’re so versatile and look great in the summer with a tan. AgaMango White Blouse.PNGin, you can pair a white blouse with most outfits and pull of an effortlessly glam look. I go through white blouses like nobody’s business because Ross cant seem to tell the difference between a white and dark load of washing and they all turn grey. But because on the whole, they’re fairly inexpensive, its do-able. Plus – they rarely need an iron so you can not only save money but time too with this wardrobe staple! My favourite at the moment is this one from Mango and is only £19.99 in the sale- Bargain!! BooHoo White Blouse.PNG

Hopefully someone out there now finds a good bargain and saves some dosh whilst looking chic as can be – if you see any amazing sale finds please let me know!!

Katie x

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