Business Casual Superstar: Wearing Capris to Work!

by HumaR | October 7th, 2010   

By Huma Rashid

I’m back after a month-long sojourn due to the appellate brief from Hell. It’s been vanquished, thankfully, so now I’m back to deliver weekly wardrobe assistance packaged up as a cute little blog post with a picture, a couple links, and random non-sequitors.

I got a request a while ago from Lori, who read my post about wearing shorts to work and wanted to know if I could help her with capris. Parts of our country are still experiencing heat waves, so even though it’s October, capris aren’t out of the question just yet. And for those of you that live on the West coast or way down south, capris might very well be an option year-round. I’m from Chicago, so I have no idea what that’s like. I’ve already gotten out of my down comforter and my Uggs. Drat.

Anyway, some ground rules for wearing capris to work:

  • Capris should hit at mid-calf. Avoid those that hit just below the knee; they’ll look like clam-diggers, and you don’t need that.
  • For work, go with silk, cotton or linen capris. Those tend to be most work-appropriate, because the goal is to wear this casual article of clothing without looking inappropriately casual at the office.
  • Capris should be straight-legged or have a slight flare. Do not go with wide-bottom capris, and don’t go with skin-tight capris. They should fit without going toward either extreme.
  • Avoid tapered capris, because they may very well make your hips look disproportionately wide. And then your bottom half looks like an ice cream cone, and just…no. (Of course, there’s always going to be the reader that’s a total twig and can totally pull off the tapered capris. icon wink Business Casual Superstar: Wearing Capris to Work! Haha. Just use your best judgment and look in a full-length mirror so you’re better aware of your proportions.)
  • Also avoid capris with huge pockets, tons of extra buttons, and other fussy details. You don’t need that. You want to pull off a sleek look in capris, not look like they’re your beach-cover-up, with all those drawstring ties and cargo pockets and clackety-clack buttons all over the place.
  • The best shoes to wear with capris: sandals, wedges, flats, kitten heels. I’ve seen some women pull off the high-heels-and-capris look very well, but they’ve been few and far between. And often runway models. And most of us are not runway models, because we actually, you know, eat.
  • It is absolutely NOT true that short women cannot wear capris. (We just have to be extra careful, among other things, to avoid tapered capris because they make us look shorter and thicker.)
  • And finally, if you’re a big fan of capris, thank Mary Tyler Moore for basically starting the trend. (Or at least bringing it to the forefront of our fashion-consciousness.)

marytylermoore32 Business Casual Superstar: Wearing Capris to Work!

She was adorable.

Anyway, here’s an outfit created around capris that would be totally appropriate for work.

ww32 Business Casual Superstar: Wearing Capris to Work!Cotton Twill Signature Capris in Soft Pewter ………. $9.88
Confetti Shell in Blue Multi ………. $29.99
AE Colorful Bar Belt in Weed Green ………. $19.50
Unplugged Dumbo in Nude (top picture) ………. $39.97
CL Flat in Champagne (bottom picture) ………. $39.95

Now, everyone pull up a chair so we can discuss this.

I picked a pair of twill capris, straight through the hip and thigh, hitting mid-calf, in a nice beige color. (Soft pewter, rather.) I went with a pretty shell in a lively blue print (I was hemming and hawing about going with a short-sleeve sweater top that I really liked, but picked this one), and I’d probably tuck it in. I added a green belt (I really wanted to do orange, since I’ve always loved orange and blue together and it would have given us a nice pop of color) but picked the green in case a lot of you wanted to play it safe. (I believe this same belt is available in orange, too, so there we are.)

For the shoes, I wanted to go beige to match the pants, and I found these two pairs that were comparably priced. The first from Piperlime is a round-toe, which, frankly, I’ve always preferred. I’m not wild about pointy toe flats (but I do include them in a lot of my posts just because I know a lot of people are). I like the ruffle on the toe mostly because it reminds me of these really cute Elizabeth & James grey flats I have, that have a zippered ruffle thing going on, and I love them, so it carries over to these ones for some unknown reason.

In case you like pointy-toe flats, and wanted to add some glitz to the outfit, I also added these sparkly champagne flats for some sparkle and fun. Just a two cent difference in price, and we’re still below our budget of $100.

And there we have a way to wear capris to work!