Reader Request: How Can I Make Sequins Work-Appropriate?

by HumaR | July 15th, 2010   

By Huma Rashid

I got yet another email from a reader that referred to my last post here, where I discussed making shorts work-appropriate. This one is kind of in the same vein, in that Melanie wants to know if there’s any way for her to show up at work wearing her favorite sequin-embellished tank top.

I’m not going to sit here and scold all of you for even daring to think of wearing tank tops to work. Hardly! I’m actually a huge fan of lacy camisoles, and I love wearing them under brightly colored cardigans. One of my fellow law students has a similar love of corsets and bustiers, and admits that she’s been known to show up to court or work wearing a bustier over a collared dress shirt, under her suit jacket.

The point is, there are always ways to gussy up your favorite articles of clothing that would usually be too sexy for the work place – like tank tops, camisoles, and, yes, corsets and bustiers.

So I found a pretty embellished tank and created an outfit around it that would absolutely be work-appropriate.

3165lyo Reader Request: How Can I Make Sequins Work Appropriate?

Tapered Skinny Dress Pants ………. $15
Hannah Studded Tank in Grey ………. $19.99
Solid Varsity Cardigan in Grey ………. $39.50
Spring Flat in Purple ………. $22.99

I picked a pair of skinny dress pants that hit the ankle, no lower. They’re like work-appropriate skinny jeans! I know a lot of you really dig the skinny jean trend that’s been around for…forever. It sure seems like forever, at any rate, doesn’t it?

I paired them with this studded/sequined tank. It was one of the better ones I could find in our price range. Feel free to go with one that’s more heavily sequined, because what we’ve done here in this outfit is really dress it down, so a more glittery tank would still work.

I dressed the sparkly tank down by picking a long, modest cardigan in the same color. I absolutely adore this varsity cardigan from Delia’s. And to finish off the outfit and add a pop of bright color, I picked these purple flats. I wanted to find studded flats, but these were the best I could do for our price range. Check out the embellishments, though – they’re kind of studded. It ties in with the tank and pulls it all together.

To accessorize, consider throwing on a silver bracelet or two, and a gold one, to tie into the buttons and just add some interest. It’s totally on trend to mix the materials of your bracelets (bronze, gold, silver, leather), and here, I’d go with two silver and one gold.

And there you have a fool-proof way to dress down sequins so you’ve got an ensemble that’s low-key but polished enough for the office!


Well I have looked at this several times and thought about it and have concluded that you and I are not on the same page at all. I fail to see anything even remotely appropriate for a business office, no matter how casual, save perhaps in the entertainment or fashion industries.

While I appreciate your need to show a variety of looks, I thought the purpose of this site was for looks to wear to work in more traditional office settings. Honestly, showing your undergarments? Okay, I'll chalk this one up to some grave social/cultural/educational mis-communication. As far as the credibility of this site, you have lost me.


Hi Lorrwill! Actually I've seen the look successfully achieved even in the most conservative of office settings (of course making sure the bustier isn't made with red lace or the like!). Here's a great article on five office-appropriate bustier looks with some great ideas - my favorite is Outfit #2 obviously paired with work-appropriate wide-legged trousers or a pencil skirt.


Good gravy, how on earth could you make that work appropriate? Am I missing something but isn't that like wearing your bra as a top?