By Jenn Bussell
My formative post-college years were first spent in Washington, D.Cc where I bounced between risk mitigation consulting for conservative clients like the World Bank, IMF, and Citibank, and doing advance work & meeting planning for the American Red Cross.
Though non-profit work was rewarding, it left little in terms disposable income. I was fortunate to have future high-roller friends working on the Hill where every night you could waltz your way into a lobbyist-sponsored cocktail party. Aside from eating and drinking for free, and learning to seamlessly switch gears between “Sure I’m a Republican” and “Of course I voted for Clinton,” I also needed to adapt my daytime office proper to after-hours appropriate without a round-trip home. Do that and you’ll for sure miss the open bar. You may find yourself in a similar situation today. Here is how to perform the day-to-night transition with ease.
The key is to start with a wardrobe base that can be dressed up and dressed up, such as a fitted top and a tailored pencil skirt in an unexpected color. For the office, add a structured jacket and an oversized, patterned scarf to ‘professionalize’ the top. Pointy-toed, suede flats will take you from commute to conference room in comfort. A bright tote is where you’ll stash your after-five glam gear…bold statement necklace, chunky cocktail ring, suede stilettos, and a conversation-worthy clutch in a contrasting hue. And don’t forget to stash a few extra business cards in there. You just never know who you’ll meet waiting on line for that adult beverage.