Style File – Summer Business Casual

Summer has heated up properly in Chicago. And now I’m trying to strike the right balance — it’s acceptable to dress a little more casual since fewer students and faculty are around, but not too casual. I can’t look like I’m off to the beach.

The grey, draped shirt is by Zara, but is unfortunately sold out now. Otherwise I’d buy a whole armful, because it has the right amount of drape without completely consuming my figure. (Although I have it in white too.) The skirt is from the Gap and is probably eight years old. I can’t believe it’s still in rotation in my wardrobe. The Kenneth Cole Reaction mock ballet shoes are a recent purchase from DSW, and I found the purse by Pour La Victoire on eBay a few months ago.

I’m loving this purse. Just enough polish for work with a good dose of style. I came to the decision that I couldn’t keep lugging my black tote everywhere, especially to functions with donors. They say you have to dress the part, so I think this fits the bill of chic professionalism.


  1. Ellie says:

    I love those shoes! They are really cute. I also love the bag. I’m kind of the hunt for a new work bag that I can take to functions and things where carrying in my bike bag isn’t really suitable.

    We don’t get to go much more casual for summer but whenever I don’t have court I wear lightweight dresses and sometimes for court I add a 3/4 sleeve or short sleeve blazer.

    • jacqueline says:

      If I were you, I’d wear a lot of sleeveless silk shirts under your blazers. No one will know while your in the office or at court, but the moment you step outside into the heat, you can bring yourself some quick relief by whipping off the jacket.

  2. Katie* says:

    Great bag find! I didn’t realize how many sleeveless shirts I’ve been wearing to work lately, but somehow I still think they’re office appropriate.

    • jacqueline says:

      Hey, with a nice cardigan or a blazer, no one has to know you are wearing a sleeveless shirt. Perfect for the office. (And is your office as cold as mine? They are pretty much a requisite unless I want to turn on my space heater.)

  3. Trillium says:

    Cute outfit. I like the asymetrical look of the top.

  4. Such appropriate timing! I just moved jobs and I have been struggling to put together appropriate workwear when it feels like the sun is actively trying to roast us all alive.

    What is your opinion on hats? I have a bit of a walk between my home and my bus stop, so I’ve been trying to protect my skin with a hat, but my baseball cap is not exactly a stylin’ look. Any stylish ways to protect the face from the sun?

Speak Your Mind